"Are you gonna puke?" Angelina asks me when I tell her I'm sick. "No, sweetie, I'm a different kind of sick." A couple seconds of silence. Wheels turning as she tries to process what that means. Process fails. "Well, can I see it when it comes out?" (This is her asking me about whether she can see the puke when it comes out.) My daughter is obsessed with bodily functions these days. But I try to explain to her again that I'm not that kind of sick. Rewind to about a half hour ago and I'm screaming in her face about I don't even know what. All I can remember is that all of the sudden, I was angry and yelling at her. Then I was fine. Then it registered in my exhausted brain that I scared her. Hugs, apologies... Then the guilt.. The kind that makes your stomach churn.
So I'm trying to figure out how to explain to her what just happened. It's a tough feat when I'm not even sure I really know. So I tell her I'm sick, that we're trying to figure out what's wrong and I don't mean to yell at her like that or scare her in any way. The thing is, a 4 year old doesn't process the reality of such a situation like an adult would and I have no business expecting that she'd understand. So what am I supposed to do? She does understand 'sick' so that's my first attempt at trying to explain. I tell her I love her and that I'll try very very hard to not yell or scare her anymore. She seems to be OK with this and walks away, but not before asking one more time if I'm going to puke. Then her attention is stolen by a new Barbie movie she wants to watch.
That type of mood swing for me has been happening more regularly lately. I feel very tired afterward. I want to just crawl in bed and fall into a deep sleep. I have three babies to take care of so I can't. But I don't know how much I can handle while trying to figure all this out. My seizures, if that's what is truly wrong with me, have slowly been changing me into a completely different person. I don't like it. My husband doesn't like it. And I'm pretty sure that when they have to experience it, my kids don't like it, either. A lot of the time, the seizures manifest in little ways.. I say little but I really mean ways that are just unnoticed by others. Dizziness, "pop rocks" in the back of my head, funny sounds and smells..sometimes I think I see things that aren't there.
But some of the time, they manifest in an outburst of rage. This is very scary. Who knows what sets me off but all of the sudden, I am screaming and saying horrible things and I can't even really see anything. And then just like that, as fast as it came on, it's over. What's left is usually a confused and tired Mommy and very scared little babies.
I want to be able to be a normal functioning Mommy for my children. I don't want to scare them or yell at them and I don't want to end up hurting them. They deserve so much better than what I am right now. It's bad enough to have to worry about changing the imperfections of my personality that already halt my ability to be who they need me to be for them... Now on top of that, I have to deal with this issue, something I have no control over accept to keep trying meds until I find one that actually works with out any intolerable side-effects. In the meantime, I am stuck being a slave to these seizures and if it's not them, then it's the side-effects of the medication.
The first medication I was on made me break out in this horrible full-body rash. I stopped taking that and waited for the rash to go away. Now I'm on a different one which I started taking last Tuesday. This past Saturday, though, I woke up feeling horrible, like I hadn't slept in days and I felt very strange and then I was screaming at my husband, saying horrible things to him but it was worse than any other time. It reminded me of how I used to be when I was on Topomax many years ago... To sum it up in one word, CRAZY. All the time. OK, so that's 4 words.. But that's how it was. I figured that maybe it wasn't the seizures but the medication that was affecting me that morning. So I stopped taking it.
This morning I called my neurologist and had to leave a message, as is the normal routine. Don't know when she'll be getting back to me. I also don't know what I'm supposed to do if this medication doesn't work either. Try yet another one, I guess.. I'm already so done with this entire process. The whole thing is making me so sick that maybe I really will puke after all.