Friday, September 13, 2013

I'm Not Dead Yet... I Think I'll Go For a Walk..



                                        July                                                      September


Ten things I love about iron, a whole ocean-liner-load of iron in fact, pumped into my left arm a month or so ago:

1 It makes me bounce around like the energiser bunny.
2 I don't feel like I might keel over when I walk up a  hill anymore.
3 I'm now not so pale that you can see every one of my freckles.
4 I smile a lot.
5 I've stopped being so shouty.
6 I can stay up past Posy's bedtime.
7 I can stay up past Posy's bedtime and get off the couch. But only if I really want to.
8 I don't cry when I lose the car keys.
9 I don't lose the car keys. Let's not get carried away here.
10 I don't seem to be able to panic. I think I've transformed into one of those calm, serene people who do yoga and drink wheatgrass juice for fun. Except it turns out you don't need yoga and wheatgrass juice, just a boatload of iron.

So now I'm not pale and languid anymore I have had to stop doing my celebrated impression of a mid-Victorian invalid. I've bounced up off the chaise longue and keep helpfully reminding everyone who looks a little pale to go and get some iron.

Seriously. Iron, people. Every time I had a newborn I was slightly anaemic and slightly post-natally depressed. The midwives would look critically at the inside of my eyelids and say, 'You need iron, go and get a bottle of Floradix immediately,' and of course I wouldn't, Well, ignore the midwife at your risk. I strongly suspect now that my post-natal anxiety and mini-panic attacks may have been all the better for that bottle of Floradix.

But we were way beyond a need for Floradix this time. None of the extensive number of tests I've had so far have showed any reason for me to be catastrophically anaemic. 'At least it's unlikely to be cancer', trills the doctor cheerily, 'If you were this anaemic from cancer I'd expect you to be dead by now.'

I have a lovely doctor, but she tends to get carried away by professional enthusiasm, 'Don't worry until I tell you to be worried,' she instructs me, 'There are lots more tests we can do yet!'

Oh, yay.

I think I'll go for that walk now. While I still can.


18 comments:

Heather said...

Well, even if they don't know the cause of the iron deficiency, I'm glad you are feeling better. It is hard to get through the days when you don't have any energy.

theroadtoserendipity said...

As a vegan I tend to be very low on the iron scales as well. We can't find a doctor here in Tassie (none of them are taking new patients in our area) so I dare say I am probably as low as you are but never fear, dates and orange juice are here! ;). I had to have an iron transfusion once and it was taking too long and I told them that I had to go to work so could they hurry it up please? Don't ask them to hurry it up folks...I ended up with little brown dots from my feet up at alarmingly equidistant intervals that stopped at my knees! Thank goodness I didn't ask them to "Hurry it up" any earlier in the process! They took 2 weeks to disappear. Glad you are feeling better. Did you want any of those kefir grains by the way? I don't read back comments on posts so if you do could you fire me off an email or just let me know with a comment on my latest post. Cheers :)

Tammy said...

I, too, appreciate the joys of iron: not feeling tired and not always feeling cold. I must admit I did go off the iron when it got so hot here in the last few weeks, but I had to go back on after about a week because I too tired to be any good to anyone. There simply isn't enough caffeine in the world to counter that feeling.

So glad you are getting a respite from the fatigue and are feeling human again!

lucindasans said...

I'd love it too if iron could solve other issues. I don't lose my keys anymore but my similar character flaw that I'd like resolved is misplacing my mobile. So iron doesn't help with that? Bugger.

I was low on iron and had to take iron for months. If I didn't my doc threatened me with having it intravenously. Hate injections so I took the iron religiously and reached the age where iron was not lost so frequently and it got better. No cause found, except being a womanly woman, if you get my gist.

Love your analogies in this post. There's something to be said for being a Victorian invalid. Weakly calling to your partner, "Dear, dear, I need a tonic." I'd still feign it sometimes.

And, BTW, you are very pretty.

Jo said...

Heather, I did suggest to my doctor that I pop back for an iron infusion every year instead of having more tests. She just looked at me over the top of her glasses. Apparently not.

Jo said...

Fran, that is completely hilarious. I am thankful to say, no spots. I was also very happy to sit still for three hours and read a book. In fact, the whole experience was very relaxing. Yes, would love the kefir grains, have left my email on your latest post.
Tammy, yes, the cold hands and feet have gone away too. Isn't it the wonder drug?
Lucinda, there is generally some reason I can think of I need to recline on a couch and demand cups of tea. I have a very fertile imagination!

lucindasans said...

I hope that your doctor is just over efficient and that it is just being a busy woman.

Time for elevenses! So someone should bring a nice pot of tea to you. Just because!

Jo said...

Lucinda, ha, Saturday just isn't that kind of day in our house. Hockey final, ballet, school fair.
However my lovely daughter did just bring me a cup of Irish breakfast for afternoon tea. She wins 'favourite child' of the day award.

Frantic's Antics said...

I have been AWOL- but I hope you are ok Jo xx

Jo said...

So do I Mrs Frantic, but I can't seem to get worked up about it. Love that iron!

SarahN @ livetolist said...

I've not heard of this floradix, I'm always given Ferrograd-C. It's pricey, but the bf is making sure I take it and Vit D daily, as let's face it, I'm a tired sad mess far too often, and I too wish I wasn't. I've not had my iron tested for a while, except for when I last gave plasma (rather than whole blood, which takes away too much of my red), and I passed. Interestingly my doc didn't suggest a blood test when I told her I was tired!?

I'm so glad to hear and see you're on the mend. I have no idea how you continue to care for your brood when you feel so half dead. And still blog! INcrdible.

Jo said...

Floradix is great Sarah. It's a herbal tonic from Europe, which is high in iron, and lots of other minerals as well. It's very easy to digest, which gives it the edge over many iron supplements that cause, well, digestive upsets!
Has the iron helped? The range for healthy iron is huge, and if you are right on the low edge, which I was with all my pregnancies, there is lots of room for improvement.
The problem now is, that I was way below the bottom of the scale on both types of iron. Hardly any in my blood, and almost no stored iron. But it is amazing how you can get used to functioning in any given set of circumstances..
One of the many things I am being tested for is thyroid function. You might want to look at that. Low thyroid can mean that you are a tired, sad mess, and is associated with iron malabsorption as well..
Aren't we a pair!

e / dig in said...

i'm off to get me some floradix. i recognise some of your top ten thingies, so if iron fixes those, sign me up!
seriously, glad you are feeling better.

Jo said...

Hope that works for you. I'm sure it can't do any harm, and most women seem to be at least a little low on iron. And I love the taste of Floradix, although some people can't stand it. AND it comes in a glass bottle. Win, win, win.

farewellhackneyhipsters said...

Gah! Wrote a ridicoulusly detailed comment and just realised my PC lost it.

I really hope you are feeling better. My family females all have iron issues so I know how flattening it can be. At work I'm not allowed near patients with low Hb but I know my sis managed to drag herself through full time teaching and mum duties with scarily low Hb and like you didn't let it stop her despite feeling like hell. Unfortunately where she lives they wont give transfusions so i still worry about her. She swears by some vile beef blood tablets. I think its a weird Dutch product. Lol

I'm sure you've heard it all before but just in case try to avoid our beloved tea within 30mins of any meals since tanin stops iron absorption.

Also has your gp ruled out vitamin b12 issues?My mum has to have regular jabs due to a B12 problems. It took them ages to work out what the problem was but its really helped her now.

Jo said...

Hi Libi, I think you left the comment on my other 'sickie' post, thankyou so much for caring enough to write it twice! Trying to be good with the tea. Sigh. Was tested last week for B12, will know soon.
Apparently my immune system will kick in again any week now. Good news!
So sorry for your sister, though her solution sounds nasty. I would take an iron infusion over beef blood tablets any day! Maybe that's why blood pudding was popular in the good old days - concentrated doses of iron. Yum..

Barb. said...

Eating Liver was the thing that got mine up again. But it seems it also got the cholesterol up...it's hard to get the balance right without taking supps. I do have a bottle of Floradix in the fridge, really should take it before it goes off. Low iron is very common but can be mistaken for too much so Iron supps of any kind shouldn't be taken without the doctors approval.

Barb.

Jo said...

Hi Barb, my butcher recommended liver, but I haven't been brave enough to try it yet. He promised to give me detailed instructions... maybe next week. I would rather fix the problem with diet too. But first I have to work out why it is happening. But generally, yes, food before supplements every time. And you are right, check with your doctor before you take supplements, y'all!

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