Saturday, December 8, 2007

Inside This Patient's Head andJust a P.S. to my Clinical Schminical Post

One of my dear blogosphere friends was concerned for me based on what I wrote in the clinical schminical post and so I will just try to clarify a bit. Also...she is right and I should listen to my doctors. I guess denial is an easy hole to crawl into. My rationale regarding the diabetes has been "well... the numbers aren't bad" so I never consistently made an effort to comply with the program...whatever "the program" is. One thing scared me once or if I let myself think about it and that is a friend who is also diabetic and takes meds for it said the thing about diabetes is that it can act up for no apparent reason and take a serious turn for the worse. Back in the hole I went.

I does an otherwise intelligent, rational human being ignore something so important? I don't know...other than to say I have a strong nesting instinct and I have made my hole of denial real comfy. I do have the head knowledge on the topic but just don't apply it.

Almost two years ago now, I spent the 1st week of the New year in the hospital because I had sepsis/hydronephrosis and pyelonephritis because I had a totally constricted ureter. (Thankfully, that was the first and last time I was ever so sick) For the 1st time ever had to take medication for diabetes. The hospital has a rule that if your blood sugar is 150 or over that the pt has to have insulin injections while there. (I think my blood sugar was right around there) So they gave me the injections for the entire week.

My PCP that was discharging me said "You need to lose weight. You don't want to go on medication for DON'T - WANT - to go down that road!" I didn't ask questions then and still haven't. I did lose some weight but have more to go. This particular doctor is also an autoimmune doctor and is why I go to him in the first place. He diagnosed me with autoimmune syndrome with Lupus and Sjogrens disease. He said I was lucky because everything is mild and I don't need meds. I also have HTN. Years ago it would've been considered borderline but now they consider it HTN. This doctor has told me that "if" I lost weight...I could reverse everything.

Can you imagine that? Just doing this one thing could reverse it all. Imagine if someone said to a quadriplegic...if you just do could walk again or if you just do this... to someone with MS or Parkinson, etc. could reverse this. I am pretty certain there are millions of people in this world that would JUMP at the opportunity to make even the slightest improvement in their diagnoses never mind "reverse" it. And then here I am... ignoring his wisdom and my window of opportunity.

And that is what I feel like right now. I feel like I am teetering on the edge and could go either way...and the choice really is... all mine. I don't mean that I am teetering on the emotional edge of things...I AM grounded emotionally/psychologically. HAHA! I know there are some of you who read Seaspray's more ..ahem..."unusual" posts that might take issue with that and o.k. I guess I am somewhat obsessed about urine now...but other than that, I assure you all my French fries are in the box. (It figures I will use a food analogy now) I am also perimenopausal, but still too young to allow these disease processes to take over. Not that there ever is a good time but this is my prime for sure!

So I know...I REALLY need to stop pussyfooting around and stop being passive about my health. If this were about anyone else I would be their champion, encouraging them to go forward into a healthier lifestyle in which they would reap wonderful benefits...if it were about anyone else. It's always easier to see the solutions for another. :) But I am the one who always says people need to be proactive with their own health care. I talk the "I" need to walk the walk. No one can do it for me. I get it. It's a no brainer really but I guess I can be a rebellious one sometimes...or stupid!

If your one of the fortunate ones, you go through life feeling pretty invincible until a sudden serious injury or illness hits. Things just have a way of sneaking up I guess. Some poor choices probably brought me down this path...but some good ones can redirect me onto a better one.

When I was pregnant with my second son I was diagnosed with gestational diabetes. The doctor (who was wonderful and had an excellent reputation) never actually explained the disease to me. I got the results of the glucose tolerance test before he did because I got them from lab while I was working at the hospital that day. That night my OB called me regarding something else and I told him I had the results. He wanted to know and after I told him he commented that the numbers weren't bad. So I didn't take it seriously in that I didn't know how careful you were supposed to be. I was careful about taking care of myself and gained 32lbs which he was pleased with. But this one day, I casually mentioned that I had a Dairy Queen sundae the day before. He looked at me incredulously and calmly said..."I don't understand...W-H-Y would you do that?" I smiled and said "I don't was just a sundae and I thought the numbers were low." Then he said "If you have have it." and went on to tell me that the baby could be born still born "just because" you have gestational diabetes and also other complications. I felt like the worst mother in the world and I cried. He was a really sweet man but he brought the point home that day. The gestational diabetes went away. I had a heads up that diabetes could be in my future, family hx too and ignored it. And now because my numbers are seems that I have been doing the same thing.

Perhaps I should print this out and keep it somewhere prominent so that I will actually allow myself to process this stuff. When I wrote that guest post for Dr Carone on being a conflicted patient...I told him it was cathartic for me to do that and I felt like I worked some things out in the process of writing. Who knows? Maybe this is my first step out of the hole of denial...even if it is a baby step. The number 8 is the Biblical number for new beginnings. Maybe this New Year - 2008 will be a year of wonderful new beginnings. Better choices, better health and a new job that I hopefully will love and who knows how many other wonderful possibilities. I wish that for everyone! :)

Thank you for the admonishment Angel. When people care...they take the risk and speak up. :)

*Oh...about the perimenopause...I have a short funny story that I will share in the future. It involves my urologist and evidently he hit a hot button with me that I didn't know I had. I am mortified but chuckle when ever I think about it. ;)
About the Herbal Aloe Force juice (I discussed the juice in the previous post)

I got his name from the manufacturer of the product up in the Adirondacks in NY state. His name is Lloyd Wright. He has written a book (or more not sure) on how he cured him self of Hep C and I believe he has a radio talk show. When trying to find the health food store to link to last night I saw that he has pod casts you can listen too.

I don't buy anything other than the juice from him because he is the cheapest I could find on line. I have ordered from them several times and receive the product within 3 days.(From west coast to east coast) Well...actually that was when they used the post office now I think it was 5 days because they switched to UPS for better tracking. The staff is extremely pleasant and knowledgeable. One woman told me he sells his products so reduced because he just wants to see others get well like he did. I called around...even health food stores in the area and he offers the cheapest price...even with shipping and handling so I don't think he makes a lot of money on it. I found out that it sells for 22.00 in the health food stores in the surrounding counties.

I don't buy the juice because of him -but because of the person that recommended it and uses it themselves. I know they know their stuff and as I said I trust that person implicitly. I do wish I knew about the juice sooner though but it never occurred to them that I would be interested in a product like that and it was something I just happen to mention. :)

I used to volunteer my time at a food co-op for a few years in exchange for discounted prices. I do believe in the use of pure products and whole food vitamins. (I could go on here but then that would be another post) I don't eat free range meat or all organic vegetables/fruit etc but do think it is the better choice. I use food and makeup with additives/chemicals. So…I am not a purist. Well food I try not to but make-up…I really don’t care. I do a lot of things right but when I am bad…I am really bad.

An ER doc I worked with used to go around with me on the use of synthetic vitamins vs whole food and was adamant that I was throwing my money away buying the whole food vitamins. Ha! He’d probably flip if he knew what I paid for the juice! He also thought my skin care products were snake oil and that I should save my money and just use Vaseline on my face...oh the horror and perish the thought! Yuck! And maybe heredity plays a role in it but I know those products have protected my skin too and get the compliments to prove it. (Sometime I’ll do a “girl talk” post and discuss skin care) But I digress.

I really do believe that Aloe does wonderful things for the body. I used to drink this stuff called George’s Aloe juice (you can still buy it) and I used to say it felt like velvet water going down. It is tasteless, therefore much easier to drink then the Herbal Aloe Force. I am sure it did good things but as I already said…I trust the person and their researching abilities and is the reason why I am using this product for now. If someone could enlighten me to a better product or one of equal value that provides the same benefits but it tastes better or is cheaper then I will go over to that.

I do still wonder about the effects of cinnamon regulating glucose levels and lipids? And I do wonder if the herbal aloe force had anything to do with it?


passionstamper said...

you can bet I'm keeping a copy of this post just for you seaspray, in in a file with YOUR name on it! (and it's not the aloe juice segment I'm referring to here) Time to walk the talk! No need to thank me-that's what friends are for!

Chrysalis Angel said...

Oh, sweet Seaspray, I wasn't admonishing, but cautioning, guiding gently. You are such a dear, but you need looking after. I'm with that Judge from years ago. I see what he saw in you. You aren't stupid, your sweet and precious, but you can give us the fits...Watch out for her passionstamper, her Angels are working over time, ha ha.

CresceNet said...
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Health Psych said...

Ah, you could be talking for me, Seaspray. I am having the same battle with my coeliac disease.
I know I shouldn't eat gluten, I know if I do I'm going to pay for it...and it's not even the immediate gastrointestinal problems but the longer term issues, but still I can't quite commit to being totally gluten free. And this is someone who works with patients who have adherence problems!

SeaSpray said...

Ahhh...physician heal thyself...if only it were that easy. You might work with patients with adherence problems but you are still human. I's not easy.

Good to see you again health Psych! :)