Two Years and One Diagnosis Later
I lived the first 22 years of my life with an un-disgnosed disease. I struggled with debilitating migraines, weight gain, exhaustion, brain fog, menstrual irregularities, acne, aches, food sensitivities, and more.
The first signs that something was wrong started when I was about 4 or 5. From my early childhood into my teens, I would wake up in the middle of the night, every few weeks and puke my brains out. It was miserable for me and my poor mother who had to clean up whatever mess I made. This went on for years, always thought to be something I ate.
The next symptoms started when I was a teen, I traded vomiting in the middle of the night with painful migraines and vommiting in the day. I would lose my vision, ability to communicate, and whatever was in my stomach at the time. I spent hours lying on the bathroom floor crying because it felt like my skull was splitting open. Every few weeks I would get one, and this would be the end of my day, even if it was 8am.
I had always assumed that life was hard, unreasonably hard, for everyone, not just me. I never had any other experience to base it off of, I didn’t know I was sick. My parents, my teachers, and even I thought I was a lazy flake who never applied myself and made excuses. I missed at least 30 days out of every school year because I couldn’t drag my ass out of bed in the morning. I got mediocre grades because I couldn’t read or focus for more than a few minutes at a time. I was living my life in a fog, and blaming myself for it. I always assumed the migraines were my fault, that I ate something funky or didn’t get enough sleep.
This went on for years, day in and day out, dealing with pain, discomfort, and extreme fatigue. I went un-diagnosed and un-medicated. Instead of reaching out to Doctors and big pharma, I smoked weed. As much as I could, as often as I could. I have nothing against marijuana, I actually credit it with keeping my from losing my mind completely, but it’s no substitute for the drugs I needed.
After I graduated high-school things progressed as usual: depression, migraines, fatigue, repeat. There were days when I couldn’t even get out of bed. My brain went in circles and my body was just too heavy. I wasn’t functioning.
I put off going to the doctor for so long because I knew once I started down the path to getting better that it was going to be hard. Once I had the desire to be healthy, it was going to take work. I was going to have to experiment on my body with medications, eat healthier, excercise, and be conscious of my boundries every minute of everyday. I was afraid.
It took getting married to finally push me to go to the doctors. I wanted to start my new life on a good foot, lose weight, get healthy. So I went to the gynecologist. It was there that I finally learned the names of all the things that were wrong with me. After blood tests, ultra sounds, cat scans, and neurological tests I finally had a diagnosis.
I have auto immune hypothyroidism, poly cystic ovarian syndrom, and migraines with aura caused by low seratonin. Basically my endocrin system is fucked, and I drew the short straw in the gene pool. There are no cures, and I have to remain medicated for the rest of my life in order to function like a healthy person.
Initially I was in shock. My world shifted, how I viewed myself shifted. All the things I blamed myself for over the years, all the things I thought I had caused, they weren’t my fault. I was sick.
Now it’s been two years since my diagnosis and I am a completely different person. The irony that getting healthy was inspired by my marriage but ultimately led to my divorce, does not escape me. My only explination is that I simply am different. I look at pictures of me before and I don’t even recognize this sick person or her mind set. It’s like I woke up from a dream and found myself with new ambitions, needs, and desires.
I’ve lost 45 pounds and counting, my cystic acne is gone, I no longer suffer from depression or debilitating migraines. I still have plenty of symptoms, and I still have bad days accepting that I will always be a little broken, but I’m getting better, and I hope its an upward trend.
If you took the time to read this, thank you.