So, it was my first day taking part in the Jelly Bean Challenge today. Already I’m seeing some of the difficulties people on this medication go through every day!
Firstly, just remembering to take the “pills” was difficult – I am on “Protocol 3″, which involves taking 10 pills a day, all at different times. Some pills must be taken with food and some without food, another complication. Then there was the confusion over which bottle contains which pill! I have three bottles with long drug names – Zidovudine, Lamivudine, Nevirapine – and remembering which ones I had/had not taken got a bit confusing at times. I am even unsure whether I took the right amounts of each drug for my first dose, a triviality when it comes to taking Jelly Beans but much more serious when real ARTs are involved.
The side effects we were all sent made my day a little more difficult too. For Zidovudine I was told I had a taste disturbance and so should add a strong flavour to my food. The super super spicy dinner I made was bearable, but the thought of experiencing it for every meal did not fill me with excitement. For Nevaripine, today I had myalgia (muscle ache), so I had a warm shower in the evening to see if that helped. To be honest I was pretty busy with work in the evening, and definitely would not have taken the time out for a shower otherwise!
All in all then the first day was an eye-opener, definitely confusing and annoying at times but thought-provoking none the less, and that’s what it is all about! I will re-post in the next few days to let you know if I have become more accustomed to the ART way of life or not!
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