It is with a broken heart I must inform all of Patti’s followers that she passed away Monday, October 15th at 1:30 pm at home in my arms. I’m numb now but may be capable of writing more later. She will be missed greatly!!! Her true love for life and beyond. Richard Redd
As my husband and I have been wending our way through this lingering condition of U-238 uranium and tungsten poisoning, the number and strength of medications has been increasing. Last week we had the worst thing happen to us that could – our prescriptions for the month were way-laid for 1 full week.
I’ll skip the details on how the medication shipment got delayed, but suffice it to say, last week we went through detoxification (obviously un-planned and not controlled). Detoxification of our systems for seven days had us literally physically jerking every limb day and night, throwing up, and all the basic ingredients that every addict fears the most.
Because the poisoning that we have is so heavy (trust me: uranium is the heaviest heavy metal out there), no cure is available. Chelation won’t touch this poison. Surgery won’t work – unless we wanted to have every single organ in our body transplanted (I understand this has been done before, but the chances of survival are about 3%-we think those are lousy odds).
So, today we drink tincture of opium, take about 4 different pain pills, and add in valium….oh, almost forgot: I use a 100 mg morphine patch too.
Going cold turkey: Let me assure you that it’s an experience that is uniquely wicked. And, I don’t mean “wicked good.” Your entire body including all hair folicles and fingernails hurts like hell. You vomit constantly, and then you lose everything out the other end too. During detoxification your skin goes from clammy warm to freezing goosebumps alternating every 10 minutes or so. You cannot sleep, and you long for death.
I found myself dropped to the floor on my knees praying, “Oh God, just kill me now and get this over with.”
Well, since you’re reading this blog, you know that He didn’t provide that option to me as an answer 🙂 Both of us made it through 7 long days without our medications. I’m pleased to have a bit more time inspite of how I felt all week.
Bottom line for us is that although we wish we didn’t have to take drugs, we must if we want to continue living. If we stop, we will be stopped . . . permanently.
I am completely amazed at how much humans desire to live! We fight for our lives even when we know that the final conclusion will be death. No matter how jaded, cynical, angry, or pessimistic we may be: Life Is Important.
There are other important issues: Quality of life and finding a dignity as we die. Unfortunately in the United States of America and most all countries, the dying are not provided a dignifed, comfortable, and painless way to die. Suicide for terminally ill patients is unlawful (except Oregon – and there are so many restrictions there, that I would advise you not to pack your bags and get right over there…).
Richard and I have gone full circle on the subject of the right to die. We firmly believe the laws must be changed to protect people such as ourselves. We should have a say over our bodies and life. We must. Because by not having a right to say when and how I will die from a debilitating condition, the government basically OWNS me.
There are a few exceptional events in our life where I don’t want the government involved, and the right to die is one.
Going back to being without our medicines for one week for a moment of reflection: It was hell. But, I found that I have an incredibly strong desire to stay alive through it all. We humans can take a lot of battering and pain for just one deep breath of air.
Simplicity can cure a lot that ails us…yet another post that I will remember!
The brain is an amazing thing. It processes millions and billions bits of information every second.
Your brain and the way the think about your life is what makes your life what it is.
You are a product of your thoughts and of course your thoughts are a result of all you have experienced in your life.
So how is minimalist living or living at least a more simple life the answer to the problems you may be experiencing right now?
Well a lot of us go through ups and downs during our lives. But it amazes it how generally unhappy a lot of us seem to be. We have so much. so much to be thankful for. But we forget this don’t we?
We tend to focus on what we don’t have. We think we don’t have enough money, enough good looks, enough of a house, enough success. We…
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Over the last 3 years I have heard much conversation and read a lot about “pain management.” …sounds like a great idea to me. So, why can’t I find it?!
I do know that every chronic or long-term patient has thought about it. You just can’t get through your day without thinking about how best to combat pain.
Unconsciously I bite the inside of my mouth when pain gets the upper hand. . .I think it’s because by causing pain in another area of my body, it minimizes the pain in my gut and other areas on my body that are painful – so, biting the inside of my mouth kind of distracts me.
Think about this: if you had lung cancer and were going through a lot of suffering because of that, you would try like heck to make the pain go away, right?! So, I think it’s probably normal for us to try to distract ourselves from chronic, harsh pain. And, if you can’t get the right medicines immediately, our natural inclination is to do anything in our power to Stop The Pain!
What are your favorite coping methods? I would love to hear from you and find out about what works for others…Here are some of mine:
- Re-visit some of my favorite places in my mind (particularily scuba diving spots that stand out in my memory)
- Writing Lists of Fun Things I Have Done and then re-reading the list. (thanks for that one, Mark!) Funny, but I revisit this list and can always add to it
- Stub My Toe (Diverting my mind to another part of my body)
- Talking and Listening to my Husband
- Calling a Friend
- Have a Good Cry – – I mean a big, loud and blubbering cry some where nobody else will hear me
What are your favorite coping mechanisms? Inquiring minds want to know!
This morning my “pain medicine” will consist of roling over in bed and snuggling with Richard. It’s a little after 6am and after being up any period of time, I find the pain starts rocking my little world no matter how much morphine I take or how many pain relieving patches I slap on my body! This morning my vote is to snuggle.
Beyond Treason – – Today I was inspired to re-watch a video “Beyond Treason.” It’s a long video (about an hour), but if you want to know anything about depleted uranium and our personal situation, it’s worth the time. I’m not so hot at re-posting, but hopefully I can do it here. Ah – to heck with it for now! I tried to post this video and can’t figure out how, so, until I get smarter, just go to www.youtube.com – type in Beyond Treason and watch the full length version!
Rich and I have had a very tough week . . . he’s asleep, thankfully, now. After early this morning I’m glad for him to have the relief of resting. I’m also grateful for our friends and family caring even though we tend to be isolationist-type of people.
Lately we have both felt the effects of the poisoning increasing in severity and swiftness. It’s not easy to face, but face it – we must. I’m grateful for many things this afternoon as I lay here in bed next to my sweetheart. We have had a blessed life together in so many ways…we’ve lived in many beautiful countries, done some darned interesting things, have had great friends and family support, and our love together. Rather than wring my hands and feel despair, I would much rather think of these and other great things that have been treasures for us through the years.
There! I feel just a little better!
The effects of the poisoning are often extremely violent both suddenly physically and emotionally. For instance; dateline this morning at 4:02 a.m. – I awoke to hearing Richard vomiting in the toilet. His retching was strong and violent along with tears. Grabbing a washcloth, I wet it down and held it to his forehead with another one on the back of his neck. With my third arm I grabbed a clean towel (didn’t know I had one, did you?). Laying the towel over his back, I re-wet a wash cloth and cleaned his face. The retching doesn’t stop for about 10 to 15 minutes. I murmer encouragement and put a little Gold Bond powder on Richard’s back.
With my fourth hand I muddle through the pill drawer and locate a diazapam and two light-duty sleeping pills. Oh, yes, and three Lomotil….because at this point, Richard certainly can’t take any Tincture of Opium. He is back and forth on the toilet with tears and hurting badly.
He cries just like I do when an attack hits – man, woman, child, adult…this is hell. After about 30 minutes, the effects wane, and Richard settles back down into the bed uneasily – worrying a little that he’s going to begin throwing up again. I hold him and talk softly to him … hoping that he can settle down soon.
We worry a lot about running out of medicines to calm the gut and our emotions. You do what you must. Sometimes we just lay on the bed or on the floor and rock . . . and yes, we pray.
Knowing that the pain and hurt isn’t going away – – this is our life; settles into our heart — it hurts. We have each other to take each other: that’s it. That hurts too.
We love each other and we care for each other. How grateful we are for each other. It will never get better.
Just two days ago I was in the same boat as Richard. And, he was here for me.
Over the past year more information and research material has been eeking out about uranium poisoning…in particular, we’re seeing increased awareness of uranium and tungsten poisoning coming out of the previous gulf wars and now Afghanistan and Iraq. While I am grateful to see the heightened awareness, so much more needs to be brought to the forefront about this frightening and disturbing “war by other means.”
Our illness seems to have sped up 10 fold over the past 6 months, yet there are no answers, no doctors, no studies…simply nothing out there to give us hope for assistance or help. Mainstream media plays the political game quite nicely; putting a happy face on the obvious fact that more and more troops are returning from the war-front carrying with them the horrific affects of depleted uranium. Many don’t know what they have yet. What will happen when reality strikes? When our military troops, their family members, and government contractors begin to exhibit the horrible affects of the poisoning…diahrrea, throwing up, gastro pain, rashes, seizures, strokes, memory loss, weakness…the list goes on. How long do the governments think they can cover up the reality of this disaster? One year, two years, five years, 15 years????
The gulf war syndrome was denied for many years – in fact – still is denied by many physicians, veteran hospital staff members, and yes…even patients who are suffering with it and deny the reality. Amazing: Sometimes I think we will do anything to avoid dealing with the truth.