Hi everyone, I’m interrupting our regular programming to let you know I’m speaking on the Stanford PANS Parents Support Group teleconference tonight at 5:45 Pacific Time!
You don’t have to be in California to listen. You can hear it by calling 1 (650) 724 9799. International numbers are available here. The meeting ID is 649 394 165.
Dr. Frankovich from the Stanford PANS clinic will be conducting a Q&A at 5:45, and then I speak around 6:30. I’ll be sharing my story, some encouragements, and some things I wish I could’ve told my parents when I was at my worst.
I hope you’ll join me!
This week, legislators in Wisconsin have the opportunity to save hundreds of lives and millions of taxpayer dollars: a bill to establish an advisory educational council on PANS/PANDAS is under review. New York is also considering similar policies, and several others including Virginia have successfully implemented them.
Continue reading “Why PANS/PANDAS Awareness Matters: An Open Letter to Legislators”
As I made my way through the halls to my neurologist’s office last May, I stopped in my tracks as I saw a face I recognized. She was receiving IVIG and roaming the halls hooked up to an IV bag pole, accompanied by her mother and a nurse. She was exhausted. There was no light in her eyes. She had a sense of burden and deep sadness about her that penetrated to the depths of her soul.
Once you’ve seen the face of a child with PANDAS, you can never forget it.
Continue reading “Why PANDAS Awareness Matters”
This week marks the one-year anniversary of my blog. To say it’s been an incredible year doesn’t even begin to describe it. I’ve come such a long way since I first started writing about this difficult journey—and so has this blog…
Last June, I’d hit rockbottom. I was in such bad shape and declining so much that I thought I’d die. Although I was otherwise dysfunctional to the point of not being able to walk, not eating, and not being able to speak coherently, I was able to write. In the countless hours my family spent researching PANDAS/PANS on the internet, they’d never found a blog written by a PANS patient. I thought maybe I could change that. I hoped that maybe by sharing my experiences, I could help someone else going through the same thing. So I started a blog.
Continue reading “Happy Birthday, Dreaming Panda”
This week, I’m going to be seeing three neurologists including one PANDAS specialist. As you can imagine, I’m very nervous but also excited about the possibility of figuring out what has gone on with me for the past eight years. In order to prepare for the appointments, I’ve been trying to get my hands on my own medical records for awhile—with little success. Forgive me, because I need to vent… Continue reading “Is Looking at My Medical Records Really Too Much to Ask?”
So I tried Xyrem for a week, and I did sleep like a baby. It was actually wonderful—I would wake up in the morning feeling completely rested and not feeling like I needed twenty more hours of sleep. I hadn’t felt that way for eight years. But it upset my stomach so badly that I lost even more weight because I was unable to eat anything. I’m down to a hundred pounds. I was around 111 before this summer…
My doctor is just plain flummoxed by my strange reactions to meds, so he made me stop everything over the weekend—even my anti-depressant. As would be expected, I felt horrible in every way. But one of the worst parts was what someone said to me about how I would be off my meds: Continue reading ““You’re Just Tired””
I don’t even know where to start since I last wrote. I seriously think I’m going crazy.
The other night, I got in a really bad way. During the day, I would just sit down and stare into space, because that was all I could do. I had no concentration whatsoever. Whenever I tried to do homework, I found myself just staring, thinking about nothing. I tried to make myself focus, but then I’d just start staring again before I realized I was doing it.
Continue reading “De(pressed)ad Again…”
So, my Xyrem finally came.
For my non-narcoleptic readers, Xyrem is one of the meds used to treat narcolepsy and cataplexy, but it’s a controlled substance with only one pharmacy in the US that makes it. After getting a prescription from the doctor, I had to go through two weeks of phone calls from nurses and pharmacists at that pharmacy. The best part of one conversation went like this:
Nurse: Do you have cataplexy in addition to narcolepsy?
Me: *falls to the ground…*
Continue reading “Why I Can’t Stand All These Meds”