PaLady, I totally relate to losing myself, my sharpness and mental clarity to meds and pain. I'm usually on the Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) panel, even though I've had CP for 12 years. It's been forever since I've really been myself. I have accepted that there are tradeoffs with meds and pain.I sometimes wonder if I will ever be myself again, now that I'm diagnosed with RA and have an entirely new type of pain that doesn't respond to my CP meds, and requires a whole new set of meds with new side effects I'm learning to adapt to. The worst is the prednisone, for the pain, which works well but leaves me feeling like I'm one step away from a mental institution.
I have a very mind-intensive job, where I have to be sharp. I'm 49, went back to college a few years ago, and graduated in 2003 as Valedictorian with a 4.0 GPA, in spite of the CP. I got my dream job 3 years later, and worked my way up to department manager. Six months ago I was replaced/demoted due to my inability to function well because of pain, even though I was still putting out 110% effort, to no avail. I did my job well for 3 years, winning several multimillion $$$ contracts for the company, until the RA pain began affecting me at work.
Now, I've been on disability leave for 12 weeks, and will be off another 3 months according to my doctor. I'm scared...I learned how to function well with the CP (most of the time), but throwing this RA pain into the mix, I have to learn how to function with new pain, new meds, and new side effects all over again, and I don't know if I can do it in 3 months. So I'm pretty scared for my future.
Rheumatoid Arthritis, Chronic Pain, Chronic Major Depression, Generalized Anxiety Disorder, Schizoaffective Disorder, Recovered Alcoholic w/15 years Continuous Sobriety
Post Edited (ladywriter) : 7/27/2009 5:07:00 AM (GMT-6)