Coming off Cymbalta even with doctor supervision and support has been a HUGE challenge!! Yet, it is nothing compared to the cold turkey symptoms, albeit there has been some overlap.
During the first two weeks with the reduced dosage, I have experienced electric shocks, intense brain fog, burning that is overwhelming, skin beyond overly sensitive–lightweight blouse causing stabbing sensations that reach to my core, and nausea…to name a few. I have also had increased ringing in my ears making sleep a challenge!
I am now to the next step…which is one of the lower dose capsules every other day for two weeks. Should be interesting! LOL Since there is so much going on in my body, I have continued to take the two short acting opioids. It will definitely be an interesting conversation with the pain specialist this next Thursday! My guess is we will up the dosage of the pump and then stay at that level for 3-4 weeks as we see how my body settles.
It is very exciting to think that I will be Cymbalta free by Labor Day weekend!
I have learned so much in dealing with chronic pain…whether it be Pelvic Floor Syndrome, Rectal Prolapse, Spastic Sphincter, Fibromyalgia, Chronic Pain Disorder, IBS-D, Polyarthralgia, Colostomy, Hysterectomy, Benign Tumors, fluid build-up, Peristomal Hernia…there have been many lessons.
I know that our Heavenly Father has used these illnesses/conditions to teach me many things…the lessons have not been easy…it has been a rough road that has had its many challenges…however, I have had the support of family, friends and, of course, our Heavenly Father.
I have learned:
- To be humble
- To allow others to do things for me
- To say “No”
- To be patient with myself
- To take naps
- To appreciate small talk
- To not take anyone or anything for granted
- To appreciate the view through my window
- To enjoy a ride in the car
- To accept my limitations
- To understand that I cannot always follow through with our plans
- To know that there is no way to predict how my body will feel
- To know that I can choose my attitude
- To better appreciate time in prayer
- To take more time to listen
- To prepare simple meals
- To ask for help
- To smile no matter how I feel
- To always appreciate a hug or gentle touch (no matter how much it hurts)
- To become my own medical advocate
- To speak up for others with similar conditions
- To never give up
- To see the best in those around me
- To encourage others
- To be sincere
- To use my wheelchair
- To use my walker
- To use electric carts
- To see medication as a tool to help improve my quality of life
I know that there are many more…my mind now draws a blank…
Each step we take…to allow others to do for us…to utilize all the tools that we have been given…is a step in improving our mental health, our relationships, and our confidence. Our bodies may fail us; however, our faith can keep us strong.