Thursday, August 8, 2013
Not Really That Well. Thankyou For Asking..
This is the face of not-a-happy-blogger. You know how we all tell ourselves little stories about the person that we are? Well, my story includes me as a healthy person. I am the person who never gets sick, has no diseases or allergies, and can tick all the NO boxes on health forms without even reading them. I eat well. I, erm, occasionally go for a walk. All my family seem to live until they are ninety. So when I got sick eight weeks ago, and didn't get better I was perplexed, annoyed, and then finally outraged.
I have a lovely doctor. I go to visit her every couple of years for girlie checkups, we chat about art, and renovating and then she tells me that I am still perfectly healthy, and I smile smugly.
I have visited her more times in the last eight weeks than in the last decade. Continuous flu type symptoms, nana naps, and with a side order of raging candida albicans, thankyou very much. I am not someone who has ever embraced the taking antibiotics or any other prescribed drugs for me or the children without a prolonged discussion with my doctor about what other avenues we could pursue first. But over the last eight weeks I've been saying, ooh, yes please, to everything offered, and asking if there is anything stronger?
Nothing made a difference, drugs or diet, and in the end my Very Nice Doctor sent me off to have blood tests for an enormous long list of every disease or condition she could think of. And rang me that same afternoon to tell me I was severely anaemic and needed to book in for a iron infusion immediately because I had almost no iron stored or in my blood, and gosh, how is it that you are you still standing up? So yesterday I spent three hours sitting on a recliner chair at the hospital, having an intravenous infusion of a year's worth of iron. The Man was hoping that magnets would then stick to me, but sadly, no.
So that should stop me feeling like I am dying every time I climb the stairs or a slight incline, stop the nana naps, and kick my immune system into gear so I don't feel like a dying swan anymore. But now the tests begin, to find out why I have no iron. It's not diet - The Man has perfect iron levels, and we eat the same things. So either I am losing blood internally somewhere (oh my goodness, the scary list of diseases and conditions that can cause that), or not absorbing iron due to intestinal damage (also a horror list). The blood tests showed it wasn't coeliacs, which is often diagnosed from low iron levels, because the damage it causes to your intestines stops iron absorption. So that result is good and bad, because Let Them Eat Cake is one of the Ten Commandments, right? And I have just worked out how to make perfect bread, so that would have been a bummer. But on the other hand, I could just have taken a gluten-free baking course, and never had to go back to a doctor again. Which would have been brilliant. Because it turns out that the next round of tests involves words that end with 'oscopy' and 'scope'. Bleuggh.
So here I am, former healthy person, doing rounds of tests that only sick people need. Bugger. Worse, I get to imagine all the terrible things that could be wrong with me until my tests at the end of the month. I am thinking that it will be stress induced stomach ulcers in addition to whatever the underlying cause is.
And one more thing. As I sat in the Transfusion Unit in the hospital yesterday, surrounded by other people who were very ill indeed, having drugs pumped into them to keep them alive, I made a resolution. Whatever is wrong with me, it is unlikely to kill me (despite those 3am wakeful worry sessions), and I want to get healthy again and stay healthy, and I will be working much harder in the future to be fit, to be well nourished, to keep my family healthy, so none of us have to end up in one of those blue chairs.