2013 was a pretty intense year for me. From school troubles to mental health issues to physical health issues, I had a lot of things to deal with.
One thing that I didn’t post about is how my most recent specialist appointment went. I didn’t post it because I’m in a grey area – I’ve gotten what I’ve been told is basically a diagnosis for my chronic pain, fatigue, illness, and even contributing to my depression. The problem that I have is the word basically.
I’ve had trouble with doctors for as long as I can remember. Between the dreaded “lose some weight and you’ll be fine” and the “exercise will help with the pain” advice, I’ve been basically sitting there wondering why I can’t just get over whatever I’m dealing with and stop being lazy.
Turns out, I most likely have endometriosis, which is what I suspected all along. But once again, there’s that uncertainty: the “most likely” is the issue. The doctor did an ultrasound (not a diagnostic tool for endo but it would rule out other things), which came back normal, and said that short of pulling my uterus out and poking around in it with a pathologist, this is the best I’m going to get for a diagnosis.
It’s hard for me, when I just want answers, to take a “most likely” diagnosis. It still makes me feel like I’m faking everything and that it’s all in my head. But instead of sitting around waiting for answers (and I do have a good general physician now that’s looking into things and helping me manage the pain), 2014 will be the year of being proactive.
The first step is already done. The doctor suggested the Mirena to help minimize the pain and deal with the symptoms, and one excruciatingly painful doctor visit later, I’ve taken that step.
The next step is one I’m going to start in the new year, though. I want to take some time to mentally prepare myself for it, so I have a few days before I need to jump in.
See, for years, I’ve been trying to diet for weight loss and assuming willpower was the reason I couldn’t lose weight. (Well, a lack of willpower, anyway.) Turns out, inflammation is a beast that just wouldn’t be tamed – but I’m working to tame that beast now. I’m looking into different foods and their connection to this awful disease, and going to see if I can’t manage some of my trouble through different dietary changes. Don’t get me wrong – I already eat ridiculously healthily (especially for someone of my body composition, but that’s another story) – I just want to see if I can eliminate some of the chemical reactions going on inside my body that are causing this suffering.
Let’s face it, though: I’m an amateur at best. I have so little understanding of this sort of thing, beyond what doctors have told me. Because of that, I’ll take any advice I can get! What do you know about inflammation and chronic illness, and how would you approach such a huge change in your life?