Monday, November 2, 2009

Breathing Easier

My asthma woke me up Friday and Saturday night.  I had coughing fits that I was sure woke everyone else, but no one said anything.     

I remember when I was first diagnosed, I never wanted anyone to see me using my inhaler.  I have to use it before I exercise, so if I was going with a group I would either use it in the car on the way or hide in a corner so no one could see.  If I had to use it at work because my chest was hurting, I would go to the restroom.  I was supposed to not only carry my inhaler at all times, but make sure people knew where it was.  I really didn't want to do that.  If I'm having an acute attack I can't always speak, though, so I have to.  If people don't know what's going on they freak out and start slapping me on my back which does not help. 

I bought a little drybag so I can bring my inhaler with me when I'm on or near the water.  It's a good thing, too, because I needed it during my kayaking class.  We had to flip our boat over and practice a wet exit.  As soon as I was upside down, I went into bronchial spasms.  When I came back up I was gasping for air and could not catch my breath.  The instructor had to flip my boat back over to get my inhaler, which was strapped inside.  I was embarassed because we were doing it one at a time and everyone was watching me. 

I absolutely hate showing any sign of weakness.  There are people in this world that will take advantage as soon as they catch the slightest hint.  So far no one has done that as a result of my asthma, though.  If I act like it's no big deal, so do they.     

I've been back on Symbicort for 4 days now, and I'm feeling much better.  Breathing is one of those things that you don't think about until you can't.  I don't think about it much when my asthma is under control and sometimes forget to use my inhaler.  I have set the alarm on my cell phone to remind me to take my meds and enrolled in the pharmacy's automatic refill program.      


kenju said...

I don't have asthma, nor do I know anyone who does, but that sounds scary! I hope the meds will control it well.

Jen said...

When I use them every day like I'm supposed to, they work so well I forget I need them.

Pat said...

I thin yu are very brave to do that in a kayak - even without asthma.

Jen said...

They had us do it first thing so we wouldn't be afraid of tipping over. It's not as scary as it sounds.

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