I skip doses.
I self medicate.
Basically if I don't "feel" like the medication is "working"... and working means instantaneous relief... then I stop.
I think I'm irresponsible about this because I've had these two diseases for such a LONG time that I'm tired of it already. I've had COPD since birth and RA since I was 17. I'm over it.
Let me share with you the long laundry list of my medications:
Advair: 1 puff, twice daily
Spiriva: 1 capsule inhaled daily
Combivent: Rescue inhaler as needed
The Vest: Done once daily for 20 minutes. See my vlog here:
|But mine is pretty in PINK!|
The Acapella: Breathing exercises one twice daily
Enbrel: One injection a week
Like I said, over it. But just because my mind is over it, doesn't mean my body is.
So I went in to the pulmonologist a few weeks ago to do a Pulmonary Function Test (PFT). It's a machine that you blow into and it measures your lung capacity. When I did the test back in April, I had about 46% lung function after medication. This time around it was worse. Much worse. So bad, that my doctor refused to even give me a number. She just told me to be diligent about taking my medications over the next month and we'll take the test again in a month.
Ok, I told her I'd give her ONE month... with no cheating.
And guess what?! I feel better.
I feel like I can take deeper breaths. I feel like I'm not as winded while doing my daily activities. When I lay down at night, I feel like I can exhale fully without hearing a symphony of crackles in my chest.
It's actually quite amazing.
I'm not trying to sound like I'm complaining, and I know I could have it a lot worse. So I finally realized... after 29 years... that it's time to be responsible. It's time to work on me... I need to be a grown up now and take care of my OWN health... because no one else is going to do it for me. And if I skip doses, procrastinate or self medicate, I'm only hurting myself.
And I've decided I want to live for a long time. Like a really long time. And not just live... but live WELL.