Maybe I've mentioned this before, but if not, here it is: I'm going to quit going to doctors, well maybe I'll go to one if I have to.
Every time I go to a doctor I am subjected to another test or two which results in another diagnosis or two. My mother-in-law attributed her health and long life (103 yrs.) to the fact that she stayed away from doctors. She may have been right!
Now, I say, if I had a preference I would not choose Celiac Disease, which makes me change my diet--no gluten allowed. I must avoid all wheat, barley, and rye products. But there it is, and it's best I claim it before I suffer the worst consequences, which is a long list of illnesses I don't want, and including some of the things I already have that could get worse. Honestly, I was almost sure I didn't have Celiac as I have few of the symptoms.
When I was in my twenties I was diagnosed with Grave's Disease, an autoimmune thyroid disorder, which caused me to keep losing weight until I was down to 98 pounds. (You would not believe it now!) I chose RAI (radioactive iodine) treatment instead of surgery. Sometimes I wonder if that was a good decision. With hardly nothing left of my thyroid gland, I'm totally dependent on the correct dose of prescription thyroid hormone replacement.
Some doctors consider symptoms of low thyroid, others depend solely on the TSH test which shows how much thyroid hormone is circulating in my body. It's only after I've gained an extra 10-15 pounds and feel a real lack of energy (an honest couch potato), that the endocrinologist will finally increase the thyroid hormone replacement. Sometimes the pounds will start going back down, but often I have to starve myself a little to get it going.
It's a real roller coaster ride! Up, down, up, down. Am I having fun yet? Not!
So here I sit, a real conglomeration of autoimmune disorders: thyroid disorder, fibromyalgia (which I think is the result of a malfunctioning thyroid), diabetes II, peripheral neuropathy (the painful, rather than the numbing, kind--not caused by my diabetes II, but by autoimmune something), a striated muscle antibody, which could be another autoimmune disorder, or when added to other symptoms could be Myasthenia Gravis--what Onassis had--or a marker for cancer. Most recent discoveries are GERD (yep they found that too), and Celiac.
At least I can be thankful for one or several things. Most of these autoimmune symptoms are mild enough that it's been several years since I've had a full-blown -- darn, what's the word I'm looking for here? -- Anyway, my ANA, when last taken, was almost normal compared to a high 1-1280 ten years ago, which probably means nothing to some people.
I spend a lot of time trying to keep track of what I can or can't eat, taking my blood sugar; and trying to keep myself from giving in to depression. I keep telling myself, I can do this, I'll be okay, God is in control...but when can I get to a "normal" place in my life?
Thank God for the health of the rest of my family, and that I can still enjoy our grandkids, and our daughter and son. Yes, thank God for all the health I do have left.
I sometimes read the obituaries of many who have died that are younger than me. I check to see if my name is there, and once I know it's not, I count my blessings and keep going.
"But let me reveal to you a wonderful secret. We will not all die, but we will be transformed! It will happen in a moment, in the blink of an eye, when the last trumpet is blown. For when the trumpet sounds, those who have died will be raised to live forever. And we who are living will also be transformed." I Corinthians 15:51-52