I just realized that since I’ve moved to this new blog I haven’t been writing much about myself and what’s going on in my life. I guess my birdwatching obsession has taken over here too. As my various health issues over the past six months have limited my activities so much, watching the birds and taking their pictures from the window have been just about the only things to keep me sane. I’ve been too sick to even knit or read, two of my other favorite pasttimes. Especially this week, which was particularly bad.
I’ve developed some sort of digestive disorder that we’re in the process of trying to diagnose. At this point it could be ulcers, a gallbladder problem, acid reflux, or who knows what else. All I know is that it’s very painful, and when it occasionally happens for five days straight I feel like I’d rather be dead than go through this. Seriously, it’s maddening.
I had an EGD on Wednesday, during which they found some “erosions” and inflammation in my stomach. Biopsies were taken and I got a prescription for Prilosec to take while we wait 2 weeks for the lab results. The test wasn’t bad at all as I slept through the whole thing. I also slept most of the rest of the day, as I recovered from the anesthesia. But the real fun started on Thursday morning, as I woke up and immediately vomited blood. I had been told not to take aspirin for a week in case there was bleeding from the biopsies, but I still panicked when I saw blood in the toilet. I called the doctor’s office and was told they’d page him. As we waited 45 minutes for a return call, I vomited blood again. When they finally called me back, they said if I continued to see blood I should go to the emergency room. Great. I feel like crap and I might have to get dressed and go out in the cold to the hospital, where they’ll poke and prod and violate my dignity. Don’t. Want. To.
Thankfully I started to feel better and there was no more vomiting that day. But the whole episode had scared me quite a bit. I’ve been frustrated and miserable a lot in recent months, but this was the first time I’d actually been scared like that. Not really scared about what they’d find was wrong, but worried about how I would deal with continual visits to multiple specialists and hospitals. I don’t have patience for long doctor’s office waits and filling out the same form for every new doctor I see. OMG, why can’t they computerize this stuff so they can just pull our records up from a central database?!
I’ve been really lucky in my life up to this point because I’ve been healthy most of the time. But it seems that everything is going to hell at once, just as I approach a milestone age: 50. I’m overweight, I’ve got back problems, arthritis, digestive problems, sinus headaches….does it ever end? If this is a wake up call, believe me, I get it! I’m motivated to do what I can to get healthy, but I need some relief from constant pain before I can do too much. Right now I spend too much time trying to sleep so I don’t feel the pain, and I know that’s not helping anything either.
Thankfully, my husband has been wonderful through all my problems, taking time off work, doing household chores and taking care of me. I hate not being able to keep up with things like laundry and cleaning, but I’m learning to take advantage of my good days for doing what I can. And I’m learning to appreciate every moment that I feel good too. Believe me, there’s real truth in that saying, “Without your health, you have nothing.” If only I could go back 10 years and live a healthier life….I swear I’d do it right the next time.