Saturday, 8 September 2012

A Wave of Relief

In an earlier blog post, I outlined some potential cardiac problems I was facing.  Well, last week, I saw my GP who had the results of the stress test I underwent and everything came back normal.  He said I could run a marathon.  Indeed, my doctor, who was on holiday when the initial EKG results came back was royally ticked off that such a big deal was made.

Needless to say I am relieved.  I hope that others who are being treated for depression recognize that many medications have the potential for scary side-effects.  You should ask your treating physician to have baseline testing done before you start your medication and have regular follow-up testing done once treatment begins.

I have long preferred not being on medication of any type unless absolutely necessary.  This experience has done nothing to improve my view of medication.  Now I am faced with a dilemma.  I have come off one of my medications, the mood stabilizing Zeldox, and have tapered down on my anti-depressant, desipramine.  A big part of me wants to come off my meds altogether.  I don't like the cardiac side-effects nor the other ongoing side-effects of dizziness and constipation.  My psychiatrist, however, is concerned that I will relapse back into a major depressive episode.  Further, if she is no longer actively treating me, I can no longer be kept in the mood disorder program and would have to be re-referred along with the attendant one year wait I faced last time if I do relapse.  This, of course, raises a whole slew of other issues about the nature of the mental health care system, which, really, is a subject for another post.

One silver lining about the scare I endured is that I am now really dedicated to improving my overall fitness and not taking my physical health for granted.  I can't foresee a circumstance where I will not have a regular exercise routine and try to manage my diet a bit better.  I want to be around for my family as long as possible.

Wednesday, 5 September 2012

The CIBC Run for the Cure

As many of my readers know, my wife Kate has been diagnosed with breast cancer.  She has decided that she wants to participate in Ottawa's edition of the CIBC Run for the Cure in support of the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation. which will take place on September 30th.  To support her and this cause, the Bean and I will be walking right beside her.  Please see Kate's blog for more information.

Normally, I'm not a fan of canvassing for funds.  I really don't like asking people to part with their hard earned dollars, especially when we are all bombarded daily with requests for donations from myriad charities.  Just because I may be a neighbour or friend, I don't want anyone to feel obligated.  Having said that, I have a vested interest in this one, and if anyone out there would like to make a donation, I would be deeply grateful and you can sponsor me with a donation online at this link.  Or you may want to consider participating in an event in your city.  Or not.  (My God, I'm the king of the soft-sell)

In any case, I appreciate you stopping by and giving this a read.  I hope you all take care.