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Archive for June, 2014

You’d Think I’d Be Thrilled

This week I heard from the doctor that I don’t have Celiac, that I’m not gluten intolerant. WHAT!!??!! How is that possible? I gave up bread and pizza and cake and everything! Now you’re telling me that, that isn’t the answer!?! That when I’ve had horrible migraines, diarrhea, body aches, horrible gas, running to the bathroom hope I make it, etc it hasn’t been because I messed up and had gluten along the way???????????????

So what does this mean? Last night I gave it a try, because I’m already in hell why not go for the gold. I ate a breaded chicken sandwich on bread and a gluten full cookie and the world didn’t end. No headache. No 10 trips to the bathroom in one night. I still had the problems I’ve been having but it was no worse. WHAT THE HELL!!!????!!!!

You’d think I’d be happy about this, and don’t get me wrong I am. I’m not going to go full throttle because when I’ve been eating gluten free I’ve felt the healthiest I’ve ever felt, plus I like the weight I’ve lost and I don’t want to go back to BIG TAMMY :). Plus cooking has become something I excel at and love. But I’m looking forward to eating cake on occasion and when I eat out not having to freak out about what has touched what in the kitchen.

You’d think with this new revelation I’d be happy but the truth is I’m not. I thought I had THE ANSWER! I thought for the last several years that the answer was GLUTEN and if I stayed away from it I could live a happy, healthy, life. I thought that my troubles were behind me and that my change in diet could be the answer….but now they are telling me I never had the answer. That that wasn’t it.

How can that be? I lost lots of weight, and felt better with minor blips along the way where I would have all the tummy troubles but they would only last a day or so not months upon months upon months.

So the blips have been minor flare ups? And the months upon months have been actual flare ups? So you tell me, WHAT THE HELL IS WRONG WITH ME!?!

The minor blips come with diarrhea and the need to run to the bathroom; migraines; body aches, weakness, and tiredness; painful gas; and this all comes on within moments of eating. I mean I remember eating out with my friend Betsy and within a few bites of food I knew I was going to be sick for the rest of the night. I would eat and my body would feel like it ingested poison and around 2 am I’d be running to the bathroom.

The days upon days upon days of this stuff comes with morning, noon and night trips to the bathroom, multiple trips to the bathroom; painful gas, and nausea. Most of my trips to the bathroom happen in the evening but they seem to be related to the time on the clock and not when I eat. In the beginning I thought they were triggered by my eating but I noticed when I skipped a meal I was still having the same problem.

So basically I’ve been living with this for the past 10 years with no solution. I thought I had a solution but I was wrong.

You’d think I’d be happy I can eat gluten again but I’m not. I’m not happy that I don’t have an answer anymore. I’m willing to give up the foods I love, even if it’s the veggies I adore or the fruit I love (though I’m very hopeful I won’t have to give these up) to have the answer I need.

Lord, I’m seeking an answer. It doesn’t have to be today but someday soon please. What is the answer to this question? Please help the doctors that are treating me to find the right answer. I’m sorry I’m not grateful that I can eat gluten again, it just feels like I’ve lost hope again and I’m not happy. I know you are the great big GOD and can do all things, so why God am I still suffering? Healing would be awesome God but if that’s not in the plan an answer would be even better. I just want an answer. I’ve got millions of questions but this is the one problem that I need an answer for. Please give that to me God. Amen.

“Pushing Back the Dark” My week

“Keep on pushing back the dark”

My week has been one of ups and downs for sure. Although at this moment in time the only thing I can focus on are the downs. “Whatever you do, just don’t lose heart.”

I’ve been dealing with a medical annoyance for about a month and this week it met a height that I could no longer ignore. “One million reasons why, you shouldn’t even try.”

Okay I’m gonna get gross, only so that you can for a minute be me and feel the frustration and anger and sadness that has been this week, this month, the last 10 years. “After all you’re just one heart, a single candle in the dark.”

For a month now, and 3 years back for 2 years and 6 years before that for a year and a half, I’ve been having diarrhea at least daily and usually multiple times a day after I eat. Gross I know but the facts. My stomach/bowels will speak to me after I’ve eaten, before I’ve eaten, almost all day long and all night long. To the point that people talk to me about it or ask if I’m hungry or feed me or whatever to make it stop and no it doesn’t stop and no it has no effect but I’ll let you think it does so that we’ll stop talking about it. “And there are shadows here, feeding on your fears.”

This week I was going to the bathroom like crazy, having diarrhea 20 times in one night and that was just after eating dinner. So I decided to go to the doctor. “That you don’t have what it takes–who are you to make a change.”

I went at 3:00pm this past Tuesday and laid it all out for the good doctor. I told her about my past and my missed diagnoses. One specialist said, Ulcerative Colitis. The next said they were wrong and nothing was wrong with me. I told her that I have given up the gluten completely because when I eat it I have to run to the bathroom and pray to God I make it, I get massive migraines and become lethargic the next day with great body pains. I told her my entire history with this stupid stuff and then she did what they all do she started circling the tests she wanted to perform. “But oh, oh, don’t underestimate the God you follow.”

So I walked down to the lab where they gave me the cup to pee in, the bowl to collect the poo in and the cups to put the poo in. Then I went to the bathroom and collected all the disgusting samples and it took about 15 minutes to completely collect and fill the cups. But I was determined not to take that stuff home. “The city on a hill, it should be shining still.”

Once finished with my collection I walked back to the lab and dropped my samples off. Then the nurse proceeded to collect all my blood (not really but there were a lot of viles she was filling). Then I went back to the Lab waiting room, waiting for someone to call my name. “Every sinner saved by grace, has a purpose, has a place.”

When they called my name they took me to the X-ray where I disrobed and lay on a table in those ridiculous gowns and waited. They took the X-Ray they needed and I got dressed again. “Inside the bigger plan, we might not understand.”

I should say before she sent me to the Lab to be poked and prodded she told me what she thought. She said it could be diabetes, it could be thyroid problems, it could be kidney dis-function, it could be IBS, etc, etc. I was barely listening but I remember the big 3 “thyroid, diabetes and IBS.” She said she was sending me for labs and that we would talk on Monday once she got all the Labs back. Then she sent me on my way to THE LAB. “But if we just keep walking on, we will see the kingdom come.”

I have to tell you while sitting in the Lab and while getting my X-Ray and while driving home I was FREAKING out. Sure this has happened to me before. The first time my mom was there with me, the second my good friend Vicky was there and this time I have friends in the state and all over the country I can talk to about it. But I felt truly alone and scared. So scared. “Whatever you do just don’t look back.”

I kept thinking about the times before, the diagnoses before, the guesses before and the non answers I was given. The last time I did this, after the clean colonoscopy my Doctor turned me away. She said I was fine. And that was it. She was done. I was fine having diarrhea all time. This was it she was done with me. I had no hope then and that feeling returned in full force this week. “Oh somebody needs the light you have.”

When I got home, after being released at 5:00pm, I called my mom and talked with her. I wrote a note to my prayer group and texted good friends and still I felt all alone and SCARED. “Whatever you do, just don’t lose heart.”

Wednesday I had to work from home because my problem was still a problem. The doctor called in the morning and said what the others had said, “you’re pretty healthy.” My kidney function was good, my urine was good (something no doctor has ever said to me), my blood glucose was fine so diabetes was out, my thyroid function was fine, so she was crossing items off the list. Leaving the one thing she thought it might be IBS but she was still waiting to for my poo to come back and some other tests so we would wait to talk diagnosis until Monday in her office. “Keep pushing back the dark.”

So Thursday I went to work and worked from work but came home early and it was a good thing I did. I got books from my low carbohydrates colleague and got on and read about IBS. Some of the symptoms fit but not all. The most disheartening thing is that I’ll have to change and limit my diet all over again. “Keep pushing back the dark.”

I’m disheartened, I’m scared, I’m feeling alone, I’m frustrated, I’m angry and I’m sad. I don’t have a diagnosis yet but what else makes sense. “Oh, oh don’t underestimate the God you follow.”

She did say that my X-Ray showed lots of bowel in my colon and lots of gas in my other intestine. No impaction, no nothing. “He is the light that burns inside your soul.”

So that’s where I am this Friday. I have the day off to get some stuff done in town and I’m excited for the day off but not the day to sit in my head and keep thinking about all of this. “So keep shining until the whole world knows.”

The song that is throughout my post has been in my head all week long,¬†Pushing Back the Dark¬†by Josh Wilson. I’ve heard it in the car each day to and from work, from the doctor, etc. I’ve heard it in my head when I’ve woken up each day. It has made me cry, it has given me hope and it has reminded me that the diagnosis is not yet here and that this doctor seems determined to give me an answer and hopefully she won’t give up until she has an answer.

That’s been my week. Ups and downs for sure. The ups were talking with my mom and her never ending encouragement. Sharing with friends who pray for me and send me hugs from DC, Texas and CA. Sharing with co-workers who give you cookbooks, share in your frustration and those that simply say, “That pretty much sucks.” My friends, family and co-workers are awesome.

“Pushing back the dark” of my downs. I’ll let you know the endgame when I do.

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