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Oh guys. February marks six years Brad and I have been together (I love that word, together), and six years since Brad’s chronic pain started. (I hate that word, chronic.)

It’s been a bit since I’ve updated you on his treatment and his symptoms. I never know how interesting this is to anyone else. Do you get bored of hearing about pain and pills and diets? I didn’t set out for this blog to be a chronicle of his treatment, but our life is so often built around these realities that it’s hard to ignore.

Anyway, here’s what we’ve been up to: After two months of twice-daily IV treatment, Brad’s doctor wasn’t satisfied with his progress. (Have I told you about Brad’s doctor? He’s Swedish, so I love him, just like I love every Scandinavian Olympian. We’re basically relatives.) While on the IV, Brad inched forward–his sleep got a little better, he could walk without a cane again, and his appetite improved. These aren’t huge steps, but they felt good. His major symptoms–the knee swelling, the joint pain, the myriad other aches and immobilities–didn’t budge. So we tried two weeks of doxycyline, an oral antibiotic, in the IV’s place.

Mistake.

The oral upset Brad’s stomach daily so he lost a lot of the appetite he had gained previously. His joints got even more painful and immobile. He’s had a headache almost the entire time. It’s been poopy, to be honest. All our questions about this path came back, too. Are antibiotics really the answer? Will this even work? Will anything ever work? Will he be this way always? Will our life always look like this? If we didn’t have to devote most of a kitchen cupboard to pills and supplements would our kitchen look cleaner? (Probably not.)

The Swedish Doctor took Brad off the doxy as soon as we called in and said it wasn’t working for us. Today we’re starting another round of IV with a different antibiotic, hoping we’ll quickly make up the little bit of ground we lost and then some.

My knee-jerk reaction is to be outrageously optimistic about each new thing as we start it, so I’m pretty hopeful this will get us back on track. And I’m looking forward to the early mornings snuggled up on the couch again. Still, if you want to leave a comment telling me Brad will get better soon and for sure, it would make me so happy. We can all will it into happening together! (There’s that word I like so much again.)

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