Long term use of prednisone is classified as six weeks or more. Not two years.
Prednisone works, so that's why it's been my go-to for the past few years. But it's made me slightly insane, and not in the good way that most drugs do.
Here's an example of a good drug: in college, I got stoned and saw Willy Wonka. I thought all the Munchkins were tiny George Lopezes. It was frightening and sort of like being stuck inside a TBS commercial loop, but still sort of of awesome.
Here's an example of a bad drug: This morning, I got up at 5 and fell out of bed. Then I tried to walk to the bathroom. I fell into the wall. Then I sat on the toilet, and fell face forward onto the floor. A variation of this has been happening all week. I asked my doctor and she was all "Yeah. Prednisone."
But! GOOD NEWS! I'm tapering down from 60 mg and soon I'll be free of the drug. (This is where my pessimistic self says yeah, until next time dummy.) Last night, I took my first dose of Thalomid, a drug used to treat leukemia. The side effects of Thalomid are not pretty, no. But it's better than prednisone, which my endocrinologist said, quite simply and without a hint of a smile, would kill me. I'm 25.
So, to wrap up, my medically challenged friends: prednisone is evil. The new drug: lesser evil. And remember: any sort of fat you might see on my body is the drug's fault and not from Twizzlers/beer/mac and cheese/funnel cake/fried chicken/soft pretzels/my feelings.
Stay off the drug if you can. Be happy you have good health. And donate money to autoimmune research so that no one--no one--ever has to suffer through prednisone's effects again.
*Note: this post has been slightly aided by Sarah Manguso's excellent memoir, The Two Kinds of Decay and various shit I Googled. ALSO BY MY LIFE.
This post brought to you by Morphine, official sponsor of Kelly's delusions.
On Wednesday, after a week of debilitating mouth sores and fever, I threw myself into a cab and booked it to the ER. I'm no amateur so I made sure to pack the trinity of Loserdom: my Kindle, iPhone and iPad. Chargers nestled into my bag, I headed uptown in search of Morphine and a possible foreign exchange doctor whom I would make my husband. (The less English they speak, the more likely they are to laugh at my jokes. Plus I could convince them that rubbing my dogs--feet--is an American marital tradition.)
I spent 5 hours in the ER, tweeting my misery and informing dimwit interns not to send me to fast track because they will eventually admit me. I was correct. Eventually I was escorted to my room, where I realized that my following ad in the Times paid off. See below:
Are you an elderly woman, half deaf and surprisingly malicious? Do you havE an obsession with Nancy Grace? Are you enthralled with every possible reason Miss Casey Anthony was acquitted? Do you, like the defendant, enjoy screaming at your children and young and beautiful roommate, who reminds me of your younger vibrant self? Well then ma'am, do we have a room for you! Join roommate Kelly Bergin as we spend three days together in complete and utter misery. Never mind her uncontrollable fever, migraine and high blood sugar? She would just LOVE to hear Nancy Grace's rant on repeat 24/7!
After 18 hours with Esther,(the name I gave her) she requested a room change. I suppose she didn't think my dressing attire: underwear and a t shirt was appropriate. How was I to know her son would gape at me as if I was some sort of short-legged pariah? As she packed up her stuff, I turned and yelled "Later rooms!!
She was not pleased. (Note: I am usually sympathetic to the elderly. But I've been in this position more times than the average octogenarian. I'm all for rudeness, but save that for your personal family, for Chrissakes! Also: Sorry Red.)
After she left, I failed a routine neurological exam, assuring myself I had MS/Parkinson's. (See previous post) Tomorrow, they'll rule out a brain tumor or an absorbed twin, but for now I'm taking triple dose of Xanax to ensure mental stability. I'm also taking suggestions for the name of my absorbed twin. I think Kelly the II sounds nice.
Then they tested my blood sugar, which came in at a whopping 400. If I get diabetes, I'm...gonna find a fucking cure. Because Girlfriend do not live without milkshakes and white Zinfandel. Quality of life, people.
Tomorrow I hope to be discharged, unless they're sawing my brain in half or delivering Kelly the II.
Till then, dear well-wishers.
Kelly "Lupe! There It Is" Bergin
It's such a dramatic thing to say. Thirteen years ago I was 12 and livin' the dream. Summer of 98 could not be beat. I belonged to a swim club, my boyfriend was cute and I had a flat stomach. Plus, Hanson was popular! I mean, I should have held onto that time for as long as I could have.
I did not have a headache thirteen years ago.
But I do have a headache now. I've taken so many drugs for this headache but it persists. I haven't gone to the doctors because that's not my style. My style is totally just taking whatever drugs I have lying around and then tweeting about it.
My style sucks.
Anyway. This headache! This headache feels like my brain is trying to physically separate itself from my skull and its best route is to crawl out through my left temple. I also have all these weird sensations on the top of my scalp and last week I woke up and my arm wouldn't stop twitching
So yeah, probably Early Onset Parkinson's Disease or something, I don't know. I shouldn't Google shit at 2 am while reading Michael J. Fox's memoir that I bought on Amazon when I couldn't sleep last week.
(Guys: what's wrong with me!? Diagnose me in the comments or something.*)
It feels like I've had a headache for thirteen years but it's only been a month, which is a short span of time (relatively speaking). I'm almost glad my mouth is so bad because it sort of takes away from the pain of my headache. Although my mouth is so bad I may just go to the ER later...
I'm going to go to sleep now, I took an Ambien. At 2 am. I mean that's just dumb. I have work tomorrow.
*Later we'll look back at say: This is where her blogging really slid downhill, but it's probably because of the brain tumor she didn't know she had.