Old Patriot's Pen

Personal pontifications of an old geezer born 200 years too late.

NOTE The views I express on this site are mine and mine alone. Nothing I say should be construed as being "official" or the views of any group, whether I've been a member of that group or not. The advertisings on this page are from Google, and do not constitute an endorsement on my part.

My Photo
Location: Colorado Springs, Colorado, United States

I've been everywhere That was the title of a hit country-and-western song from the late 1950's, originally sung by Hank Snow, and made famous by Johnny Cash. I resemble that! My 26-year career in the Air Force took me to more than sixty nations on five continents - sometimes only for a few minutes, other times for as long as four years at a time. In all that travel, I also managed to find the perfect partner, help rear three children, earn more than 200 hours of college credit, write more than 3000 reports, papers, documents, pamphlets, and even a handful of novels, take about 10,000 photographs, and met a huge crowd of interesting people. I use this weblog and my personal website here to document my life, and discuss my views on subjects I find interesting.

Wednesday, March 15, 2006


I haven't been very active lately with my blog. There have been too many other things that I've had to spend my time on. One major problem that has kept me from doing as much as I'd wish is chronic fatigue. This is a part of my pain and other physical problems, and really screws up my life. I get tired of it, but truthfully, there isn't a whole lot I can do about it but live with it.

February in our household is usually tax time. This year is proving to be a real problem, as I have more income than usual, and from sources I'm not used to dealing with. I've been online a dozen times looking for forms, booklets, and just plain suggestions from the IRS. I have to say, the IRS website may not be the easiest to negotiate, but everything you might need is there - and more.

I've also tried to spend less time on my computer and more time with other things, including my family and work around the house. That hasn't gone great, but I am contributing to the overall functioning of our household more and more each week.

We're also in the process of planning a wedding for our youngest daughter this July. I never knew planning a wedding could be such a hassle! That will all be over in July, Lord willing!

I've also tried to be more active with my stamp collection - one of my primary sources of pleasure and relaxation. In fact, I've kind of overdone it with purchases the last few months, and I have excess material piled all around me. That's also slowly being absorbed, but again, it takes time and energy, both of which I have in short supply.

I've finally been forced to upgrade my computer, as well. My antiquated Pentium II, 10Gb hard drive, 96Mb of memory, and Windows 98 have given way to a new HP Pavilion P4, 250Gb hard drive, 1Gb memory, and Windows XP Professional. I'll keep everyone informed as to its usefulness.

I've got lots of things I want to talk about, and a dozen or more articles in progress, but finishing them has been a difficulty greater than I'd expected. One thing I want to write about is the appalling lack of knowledge of our Constitution, and what it really means. Apparently even the Supreme Court has had trouble understanding the document until recently.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Chronic fatigue -- I've been living with that for the last four years. I won't suggest that you pace yourself, because my experience is that you won't know how much strength you've got until it's used up, since one's reserves change daily. Chronic fatigue is anyway more about not recovering from exertion than about strength, in my experience -- I'd be fine doing whatever it was, but useless for days afterward.

I'm sure you're taking a multivitamin daily, eating lots of fruits and vegetables, and trying to do 20 minutes of something aerobic every day, to prevent your strength from deteriorating. I've found that a mid-morning nap helps, to get through to evening. And my father (the retired biochemistry professor) said to take vitamin B-12 once a week, under the tongue. Apparently B-12 is absorbed through the mucous membrane, not in the gut.

If you haven't done, have a *complete* blood work-up, to look for things like anemia and low levels of insulin-like human growth factor #1 (hgf-1, as the endocrinologists call it, and it's the kind of thing endocrinologists test for, not regular GPs). If you can get that one (I'm not sure if it's a replacement therapy or stimulation therapy, but it does involve daily injections, just like insulin), it is expensive (on the order of $1500/3 months at the dosage I was on) but well worth it -- it increases the rate of cellular repair, increases the ratio of lean muscle to fat, improves mental functioning and, when it first came out, was used as a youth serum for rich old people. I think that's probably what kept me alive until the emergency surgery just before Thanksgiving, when they realized that if I didn't have a hysterectomy *right now* I would shortly be dead of really severe anemia.

Also, consider things like seratonin-reuptake inhibitors and Welbutrin. The theory is that when brain chemical levels are screwed up, it takes more energy just to get over the threshold levels necessary for physical and mental function. This is separate from a true depression -- it appears that screwed up levels of brain chemicals result in some really disparate symptoms. You may also want to talk to your GP about an MRI brain scan, to see if, for instance, something like a tiny, benign tumor (aka a microadenoma) is putting pressure on your pituitary or some other part of your brain, which could have a cascade effect on the production of a whole slew of hormones.

Finally, ask your wife if you snore. Sleep apnea results in poor quality sleep -- as does chronic pain -- which results in Chronic Fatigue-like symptoms. If apnea is a problem, an overnight session at a sleep laboratory should reveal it. They're prescribing positive-pressure sleep masks for that nowadays, the cost of which should be covered by Medicare/caid. If apnea isn't a problem, please seriously consider taking something like Ambien a couple times a week -- I found that just getting a good night's sleep helped for days afterward!

Finally, when I googled "Chronic Fatigue", I discovered that something like 2/3rds of cases spontaneously remit within five years, and the majority of those within three years. So it's likely the problem will disappear as suddenly as it appeared, and you just need to keep up your strength and your spirits until then. Getting that wedding organized should help -- congratulations to you all!

1:12 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home