I last left off 3 months ago on Part one of my journey to wellness. Yes, it took that long to finally get into my doctor’s appointment with the rheumatologist. Well, I had that appointment today and I am left here tonight sort of spinning again.
First off, this appointment wound up lasting 2 hours! I spent quite a bit of that time waiting, but the rest of it was laying out all my symptoms, going over my labs from the ANA test, and then discussing a game plan. My labs were a little conflicting because one came back positive and another said normal. We are leaning more towards the abnormal side right now.
Anyways, with all of my symptoms and the short physical exam they did today, the rheumatologist definitely believes I have fibromyalgia. Now this was not at all shocking to me because I have all the signs of having it. The doctor said there isn’t a cure, but there are ways to help manage the pain associated with fibromyalgia; light yoga, tai chi, meditation, medication, healthy sleep hygiene, and diet (just to name some of the ones we talked about). She prescribed me a medication that I am to start taking at bed time. I told her I would be willing to try, but now that I have it on my nightstand it has me going for a spin in my mind. Medication anxiety. Ugh. At least I have some answers I guess and a path to start on to wellness. The doctor even said it can take time to find what helps.
On top of the fibromyalgia, my abnormal ANA results warranted for some more labs (blood and urine). The rheumatologist feels like my symptoms meet lupus criteria, so she wanted some other labs to deciper that I guess. I got the results back already and there are some abnormalities according to the “normal” ranges they list next to my numbers. I am anxiously waiting for the doctor to call with what it all actually means. Upon googling (which we should not do when we are anxious….😒) all these different things, some of the possibilities, seem scary. I am trying not to dwell, but here I am anyway. I told myself I can’t get on Google the rest of today and need to wait for the doctor to call; hopefully tomorrow.
Then I get to thinking, had any of the doctors I saw in the last 15 years took me seriously, maybe I would be healthier now, managing better now. I actually feel like a lot of people don’t take it seriously. Just like mental illness, if they don’t physically see an illness consuming you they can’t wrap their heads around it. It makes me feel ashamed sometimes. It makes me feel like a wuss a lot of times. I feel like a shitty mom a lot of the time. I often times feel like people believe I am a hypochondriac because they cannot see what it is I am feeling. It just sucks sometimes and it feels isolating.
The good news is, at least I haven’t given up on myself. I am advocating because I know and have known something is not “normal”. I don’t think chronic pain should be considered “normal” to just do nothing. I am going to keep going until I get the answers. I want to live a fulfilling and productive quality of life. I feel like I am heading down the right road to get there. Hopefully answers are coming sooner rather than later.