Day 5 of 30 Day Shred – Also My First Day on Avonex

I started this morning with an important mission:  to completely clean my house.  Since our schedules are so crazy during the school year, we usually clean the house in shifts over the course of the week, but during the summer I actually have time to clean it all in one day.  Today was the first whole-house-at-once clean of the summer, and I saved it for today because the nurse would be coming tonight to train us on the injections for my medication.

I know this may seem stupid, but it’s important to me for my whole house to be clean, whenever possible, when I have a first-time guest in my home.  And I’m not talking about “organized clean,” which is more of a fake clean in my book.  I’m talking about scrubbed and dusted and mopped and everything.  It’s just important to me for a person’s first impression of my home to be as positive as possible.  Our house is always well organized and never really all that messy, but it makes me happy to go that extra mile for a first-time guest.

After I finished the clean, I did the Shred DVD and went for a 3.1 mile run (at the gym, since it was after noon and super hot out by the time I got to the run).  Today’s workout wasn’t super easy or anything (no phoning it in!), but my legs are officially back to normal.  Since I’m not in pain anymore, it’s kind of boring to post about the Shred, so I don’t know if I will necessarily give you a day-by-day play-by-play until I move up to Level 2 on Day 11.

This evening Diana, our training nurse, came over to teach us how to give Avonex injections.  Avonex is an interferon which slows the effects of MS and can even shrink the size of existing lesions; as a CIS patient, Avonex will postpone my eventual MS diagnosis and will lessen my symptom flare-ups.  It requires a once-weekly intramuscular injection.

Diana was very nice and helpful, though at first I think she was surprised by the fact that we had already read MS for Dummies and the Avonex information we were sent.  We chatted for a while and then it was time for presents!  I didn’t know I would get gifts!

Gifts from my nurse:
– A travel bag to carry my Avonex on trips (with a pocket for an ice pack to keep it cold)
– A giant water bottle to stay hydrated the day of my injection each week
– A diary to keep track of my injections and my workouts (and my symptoms, if any…)
– A DVD in case I need to review any of the steps to giving the injection

Then we learned how to give injections by using a fake thigh.  Once we passed that, it was time for the first injection.

Yup, it’s a pretty big needle.  But I jabbed it into my thigh like a pro and it didn’t hurt one bit.  I’m glad I am not the sort of person who is scared of needles, though!  I probably would have fainted on the sight of the needle.

Many people experience flu-like side effects during the 24 hours after an injection.  I hope I won’t be one of those people… but they say the side effects don’t set in until about 6 hours after the injection, so if I have them we will find out in another 2 hours or so.  I’m crossing my fingers for zero side effects, but hoping that if I do have them they won’t be so bad as to keep me from doing the Shred.

Have you ever dealt with any side effects from a medication?  How did you deal with them?

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3 Responses to Day 5 of 30 Day Shred – Also My First Day on Avonex

  1. Varda says:

    My father brought me up with ONE theory. PMA ~Positive Mental Attitude~ He told me over and over again that a positive mental attitude would make a huge difference in my life….and he was so right. Wise man. I’m so proud of YOU for being so positive. Keep up your PMA!

  2. Good job not being scared of needles…I’m not really either and I think it makes life a lot easier. Last fall when I had the kidney stone the vicadin made me puke very time I got out of bed….even water so that wasn’t good. I kept taking it because I was in so much pain and just dealt with it. Good luck with the treatment…I really hope it’s successful for you.

  3. I’m the same way about a clean house – especially when it’s my mom coming over, haha!

    Glad to hear your intro to the medication went well. I agree wholeheartedly with the comment above – the mental attitude can make a huge difference and you are rocking it!

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