I started my blog a while back and it never became much of anything. Probably because I didn’t have a lot to say – or I was afraid to speak about the things I did have to say.
That is no longer the case. In that past year I have gone through a lot of changes. I broke up with my boyfriend of three years; I was hired on full time by my Alma Mater to work as a psudeo-admissions counselor/office/database assistant; I moved out of the boyfriend’s and into my own apartment; I had two moles removed – one of which had cancer; I re-homed one of my cats (she is VERY loved and happy now); I dated a guy who was significantly older for six months; my job changed and now I am a full time admissions counselor (yay!!); and I may or may not have an autoimmune disease.
That’s right – I might have an autoimmune disease called Celiac disease. You probably have heard of it – but maybe not. Yesterday I nervously called a naturopathic doctor my sister had gone to in the past. He doesn’t take insurance – but he takes your calls for free and talks to you about your symptoms. This way – when you go into his office you don’t have to chat a lot when you are paying for his time. He can get right to the nitty gritty.
I felt so nervous as the phone was ringing. I didn’t know if he would listen to me. None of my other doctors had. As he picked up the phone I said, “Hi Doctor David. My name is Mary and my sister Sarah had come to you before.” When he asked me why I was calling I said, “I weigh about 20 pounds less than I did six months ago.” He asked me to tell him about it and these are the things I told him:
- About 5 years ago I started to have chronic yeast infections.
- I went to an endocrinologist and tested positive for ANA. (The antinuclear antibody (ANA) test is ordered to help screen for autoimmune disorders).
- I was then tested for all the classic autoimmune diseases – Lupus, HIV, etc. I tested negative for all of them.
- I have had chronic diarrhea for years. Last year I charted everything I ate for a month. I then would write down what my stools were like, if I had a yeast flare-up that day, etc. This is how I found out I can’t eat dairy and eggs. (He congratulated me for putting myself through a clinical trial. He then said – “It must have helped you find some problems, but it didn’t help you get any better!”)
- 6 years ago I was diagnosed with Raynaud’s syndrome. I have extreme numbness in my hands and feet.
- For the past 2 weeks I have not eaten any (except occasional slips) gluten, dairy, eggs, or soy. I have been taking a probiotic with 400 billion organisms. I have had more solid stools in a row than I have in 2 years.
After listing these things off with a few kind interruptions, and words of encouragment – I was told that I have something called leaky gut syndrome. I was told that over the years I have slowly developed severe allergies to certain foods. I may or may not have had a false negative test for celiac disease. He said he was thoroughly impressed by how well I listen to my body, and that I have done an amazing job with self-diagnosis! You can not imagine my relief (FYI – everyone else thought I was crazy)! All I know is, I tried eating wheat free, rye bread yesterday and I have had the worse gas pains. That’s not crazy – that’s my life.
There are no certain answers right now, but I do feel a huge weight lifted. Even knowing I most likely have leaky gut is a start to me being able to heal. You have to understand that these types of physical imbalances and illnesses have a huge effect your mental/emotional wellbeing. I go in to see him next Thursday, and I am so excited to be tested for my sensitivities and treated for them!
I am starting a path to recovery – spiritually, emotionally, and physically. I hope to connect to people who have been through similar journeys. I honestly am afraid of doing this on my own.
With love and hope for a better future,