#sicknotweak

T-Minus Five Days Until #SickNotWeak Launches!

Almost two months since my last post?

Opps! I am so sorry fellow followers.

But things have been hectic over the last two months. So let’s do a catch up.

First, I spent the last three months in and out of the hospital because I was having acute gallbladder attacks. Turns out I had a distended gallbladder full of gallstones, which by the way, is the most excruciating physical pain I have ever experienced. After several ultrasounds, an MRI, a failed ERCP produced, an Endoscopic procedure, almost being airlifted to St.John’s, several trips to the ER, and two weeks spent in the hospital comatose by morphine and gravol, I finally had my surgery two weeks ago to remove my gallbladder.

While I was nervous as hell about surgery, I was lucky to have a great surgeon and surgical team, though the surgical resident who inserted my IV left me with a green bruise the size of Texas (not really, but it does cover the whole top of my hand, knuckles included). I couldn’t help but joke and call him the O’Malley of Grey’s Anatomy. But as far as I was told, everything went smoothly and it felt just like falling asleep. Probably the best nap I’ll ever have in my life.

The waking part wasn’t fun though. And no offence, but my recovery nurse was rude and not “caring” in the slightest. I was in a great deal about of pain after I woke up. I was sobbing hard and obviously my anxiety was worse than usual. But the nurse just looked at me and told me, “Stop crying and get over it.” Then she tossed me my bag of clothes and told me to get dress on my own with no help. I know laparoscopic surgery isn’t as big as being cut open, but I still had wounds, I still had deep cuts. I was both traumatized and pissed. When I couldn’t get my shirt on, and sat down, crying harder, she asked me, “My god. What’s the matter?” I lost it.

“I just had surgery! The pain is unbearable! And I have PTSD. Leave me the hell alone!” I shouted.

She just simply said, “Oh.” and helped me put on my shirt. Then she said if the pain becomes that unbearable come back to the ER later.

Honestly, I’m still mind-blown about how I was treated but there is nothing I can do about it now. It’s all said and done, even though I did end up back in the ER later that night. It’s bad enough for someone “normal” to be treated like that, but to simply disregard someone struggling with there anxiety just blew my mind. It was just a harsh reminder about why I fight so hard for mental health rights. She only fuelled my hatefire for wanting to break down the barriers for mental health patients.

But now I am thankful to be minus my gallbladder and onto a full recovery. At least I get to spend time home raising our baby girl Miesha, our English Mastiff who we got in January. She is the cutest, and though she has chewed through several pairs of clothes and socks, I love her so much. She’s only fifteen weeks old and weighing in at almost fifty pounds. She’s growing like a weed!

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But most importantly, I am excited to announce that I have officially become an ambassador for Michael Landsbergs’ #SickNotWeak initiative, and I now represent SickNotWeak here in Corner Brook. So if anyone knows any local Corner Brook businesses that would like to get involved with a great cause, and would like to be advertised on the official website, please send them to me! I’ll be happy to talk to them. I’ve also been selected to be a mediator for their online chat group, which means during the week, you could have a chance to live chat with me about your struggles and I will be there to listen and help. I am so excited to hear about your personal stories!

I am also excited because the SickNotWeak website launches this coming March 10th (Thursday)!! So, I encourage all of you to mark the date and head on over to http://www.sicknotweak.com to see the BIG unveil. Also, I am sharing my story on their website since I was asked by the SickNotWeak coordinator to write a special piece. So you’ll be able to check out my first officially published personal article! Excitement doesn’t even begin to describe it.

Since I don’t want to give anything away yet, here’s just a little sneak preview of what I wrote:

“But the hardest thing for me to accept was that this is something that will be a part of me for the rest of my life. Because I knew so little about mental illnesses at the time, I just assumed that after a few months of therapy and swallowing pills it would get better and go away, but that’s not true. For me, my illness will be a part of me for the rest of my life. But I’m slowly learning to cope. I’m learning to survivor.

I’m learning to fight the good fight.”

I worked really hard on this article and spent a great deal of editing and re-editing, and deleting and re-wording. I wanted the piece to be perfect, but I also wanted it to reflect who I am as a person. I sure hope it will do that. Fingers crossed! And please, when you read it, please offer me your honest criticism. Since I am an aspiring author, I am constantly looking for ways to improve my writing.

But back to the main point!

I am so excited for the launch of SickNotWeak and I encourage all of you to get involved. If you’re looking for a great organization to volunteer with and work with a great staff who are understanding, you’ll find a home with SickNotWeak. I sure did. If you have any questions, I would be glad to share with you the information needed to get involved. Or if you would like to share your own story, you can, and you don’t even have to tag your name to it if you would like to stay anonymous.

But at the end of the day, it’s about changing the life of one person. While were pushing to break down the barriers for mental health, changing the life of even just one person can make the world of difference.

So visit SickNotWeak on March 10 for the official launch! Mark your calendars. Get involved. Volunteer. Become an ambassador. Become a mediator. Share your story. Spread the awareness. Break down the barriers.

And as always, fight the good fight.

Until next time.

-Amanda xo

 

 

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