Muddling Through

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All in all, I’m not feeling too awful. I hadn’t had a great time sleeping, but once I’d figured out my feet haven’t been warm since… I can’t remember, it was time for some socks. I usually can’t sleep with socks on, but my feet liked this, and I slept like the proverbial log. I thought I should look online to see if I could find some slippers. Not an easy thing in August. I may stick with the socks with the trippy bottoms for now.

I was miserable last night. I had a couple of days where I had slept for 20 hours or so, and my meds were all screwed up. My knee kept popping out, my face and head hurt, my back hurt, I had cramps, I couldn’t remember anything, and I was lonely.  I was whining to my husband that I couldn’t get comfortable, and I was freezing. I wanted more pillows, and he got this happy look on his face. Apparently, he had purchased all these pillows and didn’t know what to do with them. So he immediately piled four pillows on me and produced three from under the bed. Such comfort!

My sheets are so gross and smelly. I’ve been so sick, husband hasn’t been able to get me out long enough to change them. This weekend. I am so excited! The kids’ bedding is changed every week, but I’m always asking him to leave it just one more week, we will be fine! Ugh.

I am so tired these days. The heat, the pain, not moving, the stress. It adds up. I’m usually better after my shots, but I haven’t heard from the clinic yet. I’m not eating as much, either. I get weighed on the weekend, usually, too.

Today it’s mostly my head, my back, and my pubic bone giving me trouble. My knees are acting up when I get up to use the washroom. I try to straighten them and they pop and crack, quite painfully, as you see the patella slide around, or it knocks sideways before sliding into place. God, it hurts.  I’m trying to rehydrate. Last night I had the worst case of dry mouth. It’s probably from all that time asleep. I should have taken in some water. Thunder storms and rain today. The big stick that pokes my wounds.

My boy is a grouchy today. His sister is being sweet to me. I was thinking just yesterday how I will missthem when school starts. Check that. Not the fighting. Sigh.

As long as my feet are warm, I’m sleepy. So it’s naptime. I’m nodding off.

My Super Hyped Doctor Appointment!

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As is apparent, I survived my doctor appointment yesterday. I had some mixed feelings about it, and needed time to process, but on the whole, I think I’m much better today. Emotionally. Physically, too. Let’s start at the very beginning where my happy alarm goes off at 6:00 am, my husband brings me coffee, and I start to look dazed.

First thing I grab my medication. The second thing I do in the morning when I have time is vape. I wasn’t going to have time today, so I should have used my marijuana oil. Vaping takes an hour and a half, start to finish. My therapist keeps nagging me because she thinks that’s too long for medicine to be consumed, it should go faster. Nagging me- she mentioned it twice. It still bugs me. I can’t control this. I didn’t remember my other medication – the marijuana oil – until we were partway there, but perhaps it helped with my sensitivity? Showing them how sensitive I truly am? I don’t know, I probably just screwed myself.

We dropped my son off at school, and proceeded to the hospital where we hung out. The doctor was only a half hour late, but we were treated to a bevy of overly perfumed women (really, don’t wear perfume in a hospital, it doesn’t matter when last you bathed) dramatically emphasizing how they were in the most pain of anybody! So Loud! I felt sorry for each woman in their own way. Each needed something they weren’t getting. And then I looked around and felt sorry for all of us, as I realized everybody had something they weren’t getting. And then the doctor called us in.

New, young, gorgeous, doctor this time. She had read all three volumes of my file and asked for update on the situation. We told her about the head pain. The neck pain, nausea, dizziness, having to lie down. The stomach pain. Just on the surface of the stomach. Did I throw a cyst recently? My pubic bone. My hands hurt, my joints hurt, my knees hurt, Things are not going well.

We discussed the effect of the pain, how it feels, quite in-depth. She wanted to examine me. This was going to be the toughest part.

I changed into my formal hospital wear, and my husband held my hands as she did a surprisingly gentle upper abdominal and lower abdominal palpitation exam. I didn’t scream, only major flinching around my lower right quadrant. It was incredibly sore. She did back off right away. It didn’t hurt so much then, but ten minutes later was …wow!

On to the pelvic. She did some sensitivity testing around my ladybits, and a modified pelvic exam. I’m usually screaming during pelvic exams, but there was no speculum involved. She said I was something that amounts to ‘not letting the horse into the barn’ (my words) and I should probably get back to pelvic therapy. I was teasing my husband that she was trying to tell me I was frigid, but he didn’t know what that meant. I had to explain. Cute.

Naturally, by this time, I’m not feeling too fantastic. We start talking about the weird headaches I was having. My husband volunteers that it was like I have these vertebrae sticking out, and she goes to touch them..

Bad idea!

This send a searing shock of pain up through my neck, up to my head and I cry out in pain. I think I scared everyone,  including myself. The doctor runs out of the room, embarrassed, leaving me to get it together.  I’m scream-crying, trying to hold on until the initial shock of having the top of my head blown off subsides.

I finally calm, husband helps me get dressed, and we wait.

The doctor comes back, apologizing, but saying the demonstration really helped. Even though she’s sorry.

After some back and forth with the Old doctor, where he threatens to cut my medicine down, because I’m on an awful lot, and sometimes too much isn’t good either, which feels like the new ‘lose weight’. I’m not on THAT much medication, and I adjust accordingly. I wish he’d discuss it with me. My husband is dismissive of this comment, but I am not. I feel like it’s a warning, but I’m just a paranoid girl.

I feel like he’s saying “if you bother me too much, you’re getting less medication”. Which is insulting, because hello, not a drugseeker, and we haven’t even discussed the problem yet. Fer chrissakes. It especially rankles me because I’ve been sucking it up for most of my life, pretending I’m okay, pretending I can get by, pretending it doesn’t hurt as much as it does.

After that bombshell, I just kept a straight face, and he continued his best recommendation was to continue on with the Botox treatment as planned, because it does so well for such a large part of me, we will try for a referral to a person who may do nerve blocks or x-rays of my c-spine to deal with the headaches. In the meantime, he is prescribing a compounded cream for my headaches that he said he thinks might help. I can’t remember what’s in it, but one of the things is ketamine. He said I could probably use it other places, too. Last night I was thinking about my abdomen. The pain is about an inch deep, if that. This may be perfect. Here’s hoping! It would be nice to not have to take something that has to traverse my system to work. (I know this enters my bloodstream, but it doesn’t need to go to the edges of the skin to be where it needs to be? But the brain… yeah, right, it’s been a long week)

So, we are just waiting for the magical compound to show up. I don’t know how my hair is going to like it,  but thank God for Olaplex.

The more I think about his recommendations, the more I think he is right, and I think he made good suggestions and I see how they are beneficial and applicable. The cream may be just the thing on my abdomen, as the pain only goes about a half an inch down, I’m excited to try.

We had briefly spoken about referrals to specialists, but in light of the EDS clinic referral, which is underway, I don’t know what will come of that. Does it make more sense, if that is imminent, to see their in-house people?

My memory is improving ever so slightly.  I feel like I’m at least over whatever cold or flu thing I had. I feel so much better than I did!

I spent the rest of the afternoon just flaking out and surfing the Internet and trying to stay comfortable. This morning was pretty much back to normal.

Have a great day, Zebras! 😘

 

PS. Just FYI, the reason I don’t use my family’s names in my blog is simple. I thought it might be too confusing for someone coming in in the middle to figure out which one was the husband, the son, or the daughter. I thought this would be simpler. Also, it gives them some anonymity when we go viral. 😁 I may slip up occasionally.  It’s not a tragedy to me. We aren’t in hiding.

Predictions

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I predict I will be visiting the hospital soon. This pain in my front right abdomen is agonizing. I feel like I’m on so much medication. But I’m not really ‘high’. In that Beavis and Butthead would be funny, kind of high. I feel like I’m  (shoot, I just made a mucromovement!) If I keep really still, but I’m trying to relax, anyway, I don’t have pain. If I move, though, something will sublux, and my pubic bone aches from my 2 pregnancies. Both of whom are teens. (Or will be in two weeks). I find it hard to think. I want to sleep. I’ve taken my sleeping pill, night marijuana oil, night meds, and breakthrough medication.

I’m extremely hungry, but my stomach is upset. I bought new clothes from Old Navy, I’m always spilling, in size XL. In regular people size! Not plus! I’m amazed! Thrilled! I essentially bought a new wardrobe! $3 tanks and sleep shorts, and the same dress 3 times. It’s a great dress, perfect for the doctor!

It’s what I’ve been doing to pass time. It’s the only attention span I have. Got to stop now.

Anyway. The pain is increasing, wrapping around my back, to the point it hurts to move often. Add this to the nausea and dizziness. Add in my neck and head pain and I just need to have a moment, perhaps.

It has occurred to me people have been treating my pain for the last few years, but not really looking after my other bits as well as they should have. We need to talk about that. I think my doctor finds girls icky, and avoids the tests he’s supposed to do. Not good. I will have to scold him. As if it will make a difference. Put that on the list of items to fix.

My husband has just come in from picking up a friend from England? South Africa? He lives both places, and just flew in, so picked him up and dropped him off, and now is at work downstairs in the dining room, because there was (is?) some sort of crisis.

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Do you love hospitals as much as I do? 

He did check on me first and felt there was a hospital visit coming. He doesn’t like that I’m still on the same amount of medication for a whole two days, (not a personal fault, a measure of pain) it doesn’t fit the pattern. I don’t remember, am in too much pain now, probably then, too. I think I will try to maintain as much as possible and go to the hospital at the most convenient time for our family. Also, I don’t want to scare the kids. When I told my daughter is might have to go, she burst into tears. She is under a lot of stress right now.  I’m feeling comfortable and sometimes I resolve cysts on my own. Plus, I might be catching the cold the kids had. Oh joy.

I love my kids. Is there some other way we could have gotten them? Pods? Amazon?

If you don’t hear from me for a couple of days, I am probably just very heavily medicated and trying to be very still. If something happens I will try and get a note somehow at some point.

My sincere apologies to Tylenol, you are much more useful than I thought.

To readers and commenters I’ve neglected, and well, everyone! I’m trying, but it shall continue for a time. I truly appreciate your patience – I will catch up! 😄.

The gentlest hugs to all of you. Have a wonderful whatever it is, wherever you be! 😘

My Wonderful Husband 💙

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Things got a bit awkward? no, unfortunate last night. My darling husband and I started to snuggle, and we got about as far as Marge and Homer in the above .gif, only we were still wearing our matching pajamas (yes, every year at Christmas I buy the family matching pajamas. We are Canadian and it’s May, of course they’re on!) when suddenly I had the blinding head pain and nausea return. I was so upset. I’ve been in too much pain to be intimate for so long. Of course he understood, and just held me. He has to stop being attractive, too, though.

I was thinking if I should ask him if I could tell this story, I paused and I could almost hear him say “Why? It’s facts!” I started to cry. He’s so wonderful. Of course, just then my kids burst in with early Mother’s day gifts. They had a makeup brush I wanted and deodorant in a particular scent. They bought three sticks! My son informed me. Also, I stink. They wanted to know why I was crying, of course, so I told them it was because their dad was wonderful. They were fine with that. My husband rounded the corner shortly after and I had a chance to ask him if he would be embarrassed if I shared the story of last night. “Why, it’s facts?” He said.

Yesterday I just slept all day. I had stuff I wanted to do, but a two-hour nap turned into three, which became five… I think it was good. The pressure in my head was bad, and I needed to relax. My husband suggested I sleep in again today, but I thought if I did that I might not get up at all. When am I going to accept that he is always right? I did some makeup stuff, but the photos are awful. If I don’t feel good, the photos don’t turn out. Waste of time if I can’t show off. Or if I cringe looking at the photos.

Right now my head is throbbing and my jaw really hurts. I overdid things. My pubic bone hurts, too, likely from sitting up so long the past few days. I ache all over. I can’t remember much of any conversation. Watching TV is futile. I can only watch reruns of animated stuff I’ve seen a million times. I can’t follow other stuff. Law and Order was really bad. Archer is baffling to me. I keep calling him Bob. My husband watches sports beside me on his tablet. Or we watch together.

Ha! Husband just ran in, gave me a kiss and ran out again.

This head thing is really frustrating, but my husband really cheers me up. So glad he’s in my life. 💙

For Mothers day (because my husband is such a terrible speller, we refer to it as Mothra’s day, and of course Fathead’s day. Although that may have come about as a autoreplace suggestion. 🤔 My husband is a Fathead, yes he is! Full of knowledge!)

Anyway, I haven’t really been feeling well enough to do anything for my Mother, so in appreciation, Mom, if you are reading this, I will not take you to see Snatched this weekend, that atrocious looking movie with Goldie Hawn and Amy Schumer. My Mom works so hard looking after my Dad, she deserves major snaps, because she has her own challenges, yet she cares for him tirelessly. I’ve long felt it’s easier to be the patient than the carer. I know I would have bailed long ago.

I’m feeling really frustrated with this stupid head pressure affecting things so much. I didn’t even vape yesterday because inhaling was going to hurt too much. That’s not good. I’m frustrated it’s taking from the tiny amount of leisure I was afforded. I don’t want to have to give everything up. I’ve had to give up so many hobbies already.

I’m scared it will come down to choosing between functioning and being comfortable.

Have a great evening, Zebra pals! 😘

Needle Day

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The past couple of days I’ve been in just incredible pain. It feels as if someone has been standing on my shoulder trying to chop my head off. It has been incredibly painful. Fortunately,  I had my Botox treatments yesterday, and they help immensely. I’m waiting for the juice to kick in, but they mix it with lidocaine, which helps.

He got my jaw and pubic bone good this time, I screamed at the pubic bone shot. He felt for the trigger point, I’ve known this doc for years, or it may have been my husband, they work together now. It’s sweet. I love the way my husband gives the doctor advice and he actually takes it. Aspergers isn’t all bad, also, being white, 6’5″ highly intelligent, male, and used to people listening to you helps. I’m usually in too much pain to do much more than grunt or squeak.  Husband translates. 😂

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The end of the session. My doctor ran out of there. I don’t think he likes my screaming. It is kind of intense. Not fun for me, either. You know how they say beauty is pain? So is walking.

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Since I only go out for doctor’s appointments, we commemorated the occasion of being fully dressed with a photo! This was before I learned the horrible news. Here’s my dilemma. My home scale says I’m 200.0 lbs exactly. It measures Andrew to what we’ve found is the proper weight on almost every scale. I went to the doctor’s office and was in a room I’m in only maybe 1/4 of the time. That scale weighed me at 210.0 lbs. Which one do I go by? The one I have access to? Or the one shoved in a corner that had files on it that I don’t even know is in use? 🤔 puzzled. (If this is my largest problem? Thank the Lord! Right!?!?)

My doctor is sending me to the EDS clinic at another hospital, which is confusing, because I thought he was starting an EDS clinic. Either that fell through, or we will have two? We can’t have two. He said the wait list wouldn’t be long, so that’s reassuring. I am starting to enjoy things and pains is getting in the way.

I enjoyed nesting this weekend. It was very enjoyable. I rested yesterday. I was hoping to come home and do some things, but no. That was too much.

My son came and cuddled with me. It was nice. I need more of that. 😊😊😊

Have a lovely day, Zebra friends!

 

Return of the Porcupine

dk6cthn9wog2kMy husband and I have been referring to the pain in my lower right quadrant of the abdomen as my ‘porcupine’ for a while now. It feels like a giant porcupine is sitting there, as there is weight, and it doesn’t hurt unless you move. Then you have a stabbing, sharp pain.

My pubic bone is also back to aching. I’m tired. But I still feel pretty good. Better than I usually do. Because I’m usually aching all over, too. So, today I’m going to rest and see if I can’t prolong this winning streak! What a lovely surprise!

Yesterday I became curious when I ate lunch and became bloated and gassy again! A glance at the ingredients on the crackers reveals the suspect! Beet fibre! I’m allergic to beets! My husband knows this! I’m skipping them today to see if this helps.

My daughter is back at school, she seems better, still tired, though. My son is home again, still dealing with anxiety, I think. He has started testing for Autism, and is on the spectrum for sure. He is so precious, I worry. I know he has stomach issues, as autistic individuals often do, but with pain and sprains, I think EDS? I can’t help it.

My husband’s eyes turned red with irritation again. This time the eye doctor changed the glaucoma medication. We wait with bated breath.

I’ve had a blast playing makeup the past couple of days. I want to again today, but I should probably nap instead. I’m so torn!

My cannabis doctor just called and moved my appointment from the morning to the afternoon. They are always moving my appointment around. It is so irritating! My husband takes time off work so he can take me there. Then they change at the last-minute. If I could swan in anytime, I wouldn’t need the medication. Luckily, my husband took the day off this time instead of the morning. Only two people ahead of me, too. Last time I had to wait an hour and a half. It hurt. I was in tears. My old doctor retired to go into addiction recovery. Maybe now I will get someone who will stop trying to get me to cut down. I want this to replace my opioids, not the other way around. Plus, this guy was trying to shame me over my use! Having never used a vape machine before, sorry sir, there was a learning curve. I don’t exactly hang around with anyone who can show me. The stuff I threw out for the first three months was still green.

Anyway, I’m enjoying the heck out of myself. I’m puttering around, getting a few things done, but that nap will be coming up soon. I might even get a read of my book! I don’t know!

I hope you enjoy a respite as well, Zebras! 😙

Rare Disease Day

wp-1488290747322.pngFor Rare Disease Day, I have asked many people to take the time to learn about my experience with my illness. I have written this post as if it were a one-time visit. Please indulge me.

Today is Rare Disease Day. On the last day of February every year, we celebrate the rare diseases. Why? Because February contains the rarest day of all, February 29th.

We ask people to wear their jeans in support of people in support of rare disease, because it’s in their genes.

I was diagnosed two years ago with Ehlers-Danlos Hypermobility Type 3 Syndrome. Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome is a genetic condition which means your connective tissue is faulty. Hypermobility is a common feature of Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome, determined by the Beighton scale in patients aged 16 to 35. To learn more about Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome, please visit Ehlers-Danlos.com.

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This is me, Dana, pronounced DAH-nuh.  This is what I look like on an ordinary day.

My Personal History

I was not diagnosed with Ehlers-Danlos syndrome until I was 44 years old. My childhood progressed normally, with a few peculiarities. My mom reports I used to eat every third day or so. This was mirrored in my teens, as I had severe disordered eating, but mostly because my stomach hurt.

My knees used to ache during ballet class in middle school. I was told it was growing pains. I used to walk everywhere. I was a free-range kid. And adult. As a person in my 20s, I worked three jobs, and loved it. But things started to wear on me. As I turned 25, I got one good-paying job. I worked eight hours, I would come home and sleep. Then I would need to sleep on Saturday. Then I would be sleeping most of the weekend. What was wrong with me?

I met my second husband in 1998, and we started talking about a family. We had an ectopic pregnancy in 2000, and a daughter in 2002. In 2003, the pain in my hip and pelvis from symphysis pubis was too much to bear, after three months, I couldn’t return, and was on short-term disability. Then long-term. In 2003, I fell pregnant with our son, and in 2004 our family was complete.

Not Much Has Changed

The only things that have changed since those days is how much more independent my kids have gotten and how much my pain has increased.

Pain

I am in pain every minute of every day. It’s not something I talk about much, because it’s boring, and I have been working with the best doctors in the world on treatments. Someone always has something negative to say or a better idea. The only input I entertain is from fellow pain sufferers who approach with respect. This sounds harsh, but you need to hear some of the stories I can tell!

My knees are without meniscus or cushioning, my hips are so sore they can’t be touched without me screaming in pain. I’m not exaggerating, either. My stomach muscles along the right lower quadrant have been spasming for two weeks. They go into a deep twinge where I can’t move or breathe. I’d scream if I could. It’s like being cut in half with a chainsaw. I get chronic migraines, they are pretty well controlled with Botox injections, but I still get them. My elbows are sore, I have killer carpal tunnel, trying to see a doctor about that. These things mostly keep me around the house and in bed.

Two of the worst ones, are the pubic bone pain, and the Proctalgia Fugax. The pubic bone pain is from the birth of my kids, the ones I’m so lucky to have at all, because my pubic bone separated and never went back together. So it feels like I’ve been kicked all the time. Walking is so incredibly painful. Proctalgia Fugax is a pain in my ass. Literally. This is so embarrassing, but it’s the worst thing ever. It’s when my anal sphincter cramps up. I get no warning, and I am in blinding pain, where I can’t see, think, or breathe. The first time it happened,  I was sleeping, I thought my first husband was violating me. Why he would, I don’t know, that’s just what it felt like.

My stomach pain and constipation and diarrhea are the most inconvenient. My stomach always hurts. I am currently on the FODMAP eating plan, which is gluten and Lactose free, garlic and onion free, and I still have wicked acid reflux. I eat about 800 kcals a day because that’s what my stomach will allow. I’m constantly nauseated. I’m always trying to force food down. There are maybe five things I’m eating right now. My constipation used to be so bad I used to get shots to make me go, shots that would counteract the opioids I am on. It was a horrible nightmare. Now I can go about once a week, but it’s always urgent diarrhea when I do! Fun times! This eating plan has helped with the bloating and gas pains, but I still have actual sharp stomach pain, and my last stomach biopsy last summer said my stomach had an ‘unusual texture’.

Money

Money is always a fun subject because people get pissed off. My husband and I have been damned lucky in our lives and I won’t deny that for a minute. I had a pretty good job when I got sick, so I have disability insurance and he is a genius, so he makes a good living, plus good benefits. We live in Canada, so that is a perk right there. We managed to buy single, detached house right on the edge of downtown Toronto right as the housing boom started. It’s tiny, sad and ready for destruction by the next person who buys it, but…

Some of our expenses include:

  • Medical, prescription marijuana
  • Botox injection fees
  • Therapy and counselling fees
  • Prescriptions not covered by our plans

In Canada, if your medical expenses exceed 4% of your income, I believe, you can write them off on your expenses. Likely we will get some of this money back. Considering we have two children with Aspergers, this medical expense amount can be high.

Medication

I do take pain medication, but I don’t like taking more than I absolutely need to, or I get fuzzy headed. This is why I negotiate with my doctors to keep the dose as low as possible. On the other hand, what is the point, though, if you can’t do anything because you are in too much pain? I’ve been struggling with this lately, as my back pain has been flaring as well as my lower abdomen. If I take the breakthrough medication I’m prescribed, I’m drowsy. If I don’t,  I’m in agony. If I take sleeping pills, I sleep for two days, if I don’t,  I’m awake for two. Lower the dose? I’m at the lowest that works, unfortunately.

Friends

I can’t tell you the number of friends that have come and gone. It’s too painful. I’m like a girl in a rom-com repeating ‘don’t get attached’ every time someone is nice to me. It starts out fun, usually. Especially if I am mobile for a while! I’m having a good couple of weeks! But then it drops off. Always. I do have some friends who have stuck it through. They always have chronic illnesses themselves. The able bodies who do stick around for a while do imbue you with some kind of deficit, however. Whether it be intellectual, social, or your judgement, they will second guess you at something and educate you at every turn. It’s fun.

Family

My family is mostly accepting. My husband is a gem from heaven. I had him running off his feet last night, as he was performing myriad little tasks for me and I finally asked him to stop when it came to cutting my toenails, which I find difficult, since my back hurts. I told him it wasn’t fair for him to do this for me. He responded that he wanted to. I told him that it made me look like a demanding wife. He told me to forget about appearances and be my own woman! 😂 I love him. Even though his parents actively tried to have him leave me when we found out I had chronic pain. Just after the kids were born. They decided I was faking and just didn’t want to wash dishes or cook or do laundry.

Loss

I feel a lot of loss in my life. There is the life I wanted. I had wanted to be a photographer when I grew up. I never had the stamina to study. I wanted more than two children, but my husband was raising them, essentially alone. He couldn’t raise more than two. I wanted to be a gym bunny! I can hardly walk, not even a block, never mind a treadmill. I wanted a big career, a degree, an education. I know at this time, that is futile. This was supposed to be a starter home. I know the over $30,000 in medical bills we average per year has stood in the way of that. Our kids love this house, though, so that’s probably not that big a deal. At any rate, I did not want to spend my life in bed.

The Plus Side

On the plus side, I have met some many wonderful people because of this disease. It’s given me a chance to slow down. I was able to see my kids grow up. My children always know where I am. Teachers know where to reach me. My husband has had the opportunity to be an outstanding father. My kids have learned how to be compassionate caregivers. I did manage to also lose 100 lbs over the past two years, through incredible stomach pain and vomiting. There were days I would lie curled up in a ball and sip water because my stomach would hurt so much. The gastroenterologist hoped the FODMAP eating plan would help, and it has, slightly. I still have the sharp pains, but they aren’t constant anymore.

I hope this has given you some insight into what my life is like. Feel free to ask any questions you may have.

Stay stripey, my zebras and friends! 😘

Edited to add: I kind of thought this went without saying, but we haven’t had sex in ten months, and that isn’t going to change until a doctor finds a way for me to be touched without screaming. I bet you’re jealous now! I miss snuggling. Hugs. Holding hands lasts for five minutes before my hands get too sore. See how easy it is to forget about intimacy?