Struggle bus.

Always happy to hang out and enjoy life

Interestingly, this post is NOT about Nay Nay (or Subi or Jiminy). The boys are fine. This post is about me.

It’s January. And for the 3rd year in a row, I’m struggling.

Being asthmatic sucks. Seriously.

It appears I can’t survive January. This month just doesn’t agree with me (yes, there have been other months that I’ve had similar issues, but January has been by far the worst).

At the end of December, I started to struggle to breathe again. The temperatures finally started to drop and my body said nope. I took it easy because it was cold. I was giving Nay some time off after his weird bought of ouchiness. And honestly? Some days were too cold to do anything anyway. Yet despite taking it easy, stuff got worse.

Always holding down the couch with me

I hit the medical professionals for the first time on January 10th. My PCP couldn’t see me so I tried Urgent Care at their advice. I wasn’t bad, but my numbers were dropping. And I thought maybe if someone took me seriously, I could get ahead of it.

Bad selfies but that’s what we’ve got around here

It turns out when you tell urgent care you can’t really breathe, they push you to the front of the line. And it was good. While the doctor wasn’t helpful, she gave me an RX for steroids (I’m extra complicated as I’m allergic to prednisone) and a combo-nebulizer medication that typically helps when I enter a flare-up. I figured good, I’ll get ahead of this.

Nope. The dose of dexamethasone was pretty low and just sort of kept my levels from falling further while I relied more and more on the nebulizer.

Thursday of the same week, I found myself at my PCP as I started to feel more crappy and my steroids were running out. I didn’t see the asthma specialist (she’s not a specialist, but she’s done a decent job helping me in the past), but rather someone else who…was less skilled with asthma. More steroids but it took a while to get her to keep me on dex vs introducing another steroid. Allergies. Know your allergies folks.

Except, she ordered a taper pak vs a straight number of pills (create your own pack if you will) and the pharmacy was out of stock. Another PCP provider at the office called in a new script (almost called in PREDNISONE OMG until my allergy came up) and gave me the lowest freaking dose possible. Over the weekend, my numbers dropped dramatically and I debated each day a trip to the hospital. But with covid and lung issues, that didn’t seem ideal.

And then my heart rate became semi-crazy. See, steroids plus insane use of nebulizer meds… Yeah. My resting heart rate was at times 120bpm…

Cats are also useless

Finally, on Thursday my numbers tanked. I still had decent oxygen saturation which is the only reason I never hit the ER. I managed to get in with PCP again AND was able to see the PCP who has treated my asthma. She took one look at me and said we needed to overhaul my entire regiment. It’s amazing how you can be in such a bad state and have someone say a couple words and feel instantly like things will be OK?

It’s Sunday now and I’m on 13 days of high dose dexamethasone (the taper for this requires some a page of instructions) which isn’t ideal or safe to be doing even yearly, but I’m slowly improving. I’m trying to cut the nebulizer out some and my heart rate is stabilizing. I have a new inhaled corticosteroids which also seems to be helping as well (old one was useless). So yeah. Progress is being made. My body feels like it’s been through war though.

My husband has been doing most of the horse chores and I’ve been jumping in when I can. I miss hanging out with my boys, but the cold air just hurts, even masked. Winter is hard.

I do see a pulmonologist (finally) next month so hopefully we can find some long term treatment plan that will keep me from this annual January slump.

Brief update

Where to start, where to start?

Why we can’t have nice things

The short story is there is not much to say? Nay has more or less been on vacation since my last post. I just wanted to rest his hind end from his mystery lameness what mostly subsided the next day other than some shortness. I had planned to bring him back to work last weekend with some nice, quiet walking, but it was freezing and I decided against it. Yesterday was warmer and I was on vacation (it’s just been COLD, like too cold for me) and I decided to give riding a try. It was fine. He’s basically sound.

fancy in his new bareback pad

Longer story? It’s cold and my asthma sucks and he’s basically sound, but he now has a fat hind leg. Completely different spot than before. Trots sound, just a fat leg. I don’t know, I give up. He’s not bothered by it either. I’m assuming at this point that spending all his free time standing in the shed and/or avoiding hard frozen ground has left him stocking up. The fat leg came down after some walking, but not completely. He’s going in standings starting tonight so we’ll keep an eye on it. But, it’s not bothering him and he’s sound.

Bestest boy

Anyway, our ride. After not riding, I decided that hopping on with his new bareback pad sounded like a very smart idea. And Nay was a good sport. We were just planning on walking (my plan was no cantering until Feb), but after a while, Nay let me know he REALLY REALLY REALLY felt good and needed to let off some steam. He was showing off some rather interesting dance moves with his front legs. So I hopped off and let him lunge himself. He bucked a few times, cantered a minute or 2 and then stopped when he was ready. I got back on and Nay felt much better. We walked over some poles and all was good. I did try and trot a few steps and it was fine, but I need to work on my trot bareback. That said, since I can’t breathe, walking was my speed.

He’s a brat but I love him
Dragon breath

Otherwise? Everyone is doing well. Jiminy thinks he should move inside during the winter. Subi is happy and healthy and is actually eating oil in his hay cubes (WHAT THE HECK?) and Nay is Nay. I need to get some blankets cleaned soon but I’m just too lazy. I have several that are gross and smell, but I can’t figure out which ones I can live without depending on how long it takes for cleaning. It’s not like I don’t have millions, but I don’t have millions of every type of blanket.