Monday, February 28, 2011

A plan (Jennifer)

My primary dr suggested a third opinion from yet another ENT...with a third diagnosis.  And honestly, I am not sure I am buying that one either.  I told him my *story* from start until now.  He reviewed all of my scans that I brought with me.  He said he is not concerned with my enlarged lymph node, and he also doesnt believe I need sinus surgery as the first dr suggested.  He scoped my through my nose and down to my esophogus.  This is the third time for this and I am sure my insurance will be having a fit at any time now.  He said the top of my esophogus, my vocal cords, and my throat are all pretty irritated.  Surprising?  Nope.  I have been feeling like crap for months.  His opinion:  Silent Reflux.  I am having no heartburn which is why its called silent reflux apparently.  It causes  damage with different symptoms than regular reflux(gerd) and according to him takes a while to be repaired even with the new meds that I am on.  He did however, tell me I could stop all the other meds I was on which was thrilling to me because before this I had been on no meds. Having been on so many different things that werent even working was not making me happy.  I am not much of a mediciney kinda person.  So, I am now on Prilosec and have been for the past week.  The day I saw the dr I left there such a believer.  I had hope.  I just wanted to hug him.  But as the days go by and I am not feeling any better I am starting to lose hope. My neck/throat/ear is still bothering me on the left side.  It still feels like something is in there.  And I still have that feeling like there is something in my left chest area like I cant clear my lung.  I did have an angiogram (to rule out  an embolism) so I would like to think that if something were going on in the lung area they would have seen it?  And my primary dr keeps listening and saying everything sounds good in there.  Then why do I feel this way????????????????? plan is to move forward.  I cannot sit and dwell on this any longer.  The temps are rising into the 30's here, and sometimes we even get a treat of seeing the 40's.  Thats acceptable running weather (to me...although it is still snowing here and there)!  So I am going to get back onto my health kick, eat properly, exercise more and stop feeling so bad for myself.  No more wallowing in my frustration. 

With all of this, I have been forced to look at what bothers me so much about this situation and here is what I have come up with... I am petrified that I have some sort of cancer that is being missed for all of this time and therefore spreading.  I feel helpless.  My biggest fear is becoming terminally ill.  I wish it werent a fear of mine, but it is. If I drop dead of a heart attack, fine.  Its not death I am afraid of I guess. But becoming terminally ill where I slowly die and cannot do anything to help myself is a huge fear for me.  Now, if I could figure out how to combat that fear....

Another deep post.... 

Hope you all are doing well!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Thanks and an update (Jennifer)

Thanks to those of you who have been "checking" on me.  My weight loss and priorities have kind of been on hold these last few months. And I really didnt want to drag down the blog with my health issues...even though at this point I still dont know what they are exactly.   So, I havent been posting that much to spare you all of the negativity and frustration I am feeling.  But here is an update for those of you who have been asking.  I have had 4 CT scans in the last month and a half.  Please dont comment on that because that much radiation scares me without others saying it.  I have been pretty stressed actually.  The drs did speak (primary dr and ENT) to each other in making the decsion for the additional CT's I just had but their opinions from that point on dont seem to be the same. 

I got a call from my primary the night I had them done and he said I have enlarged lymph nodes, and the scan, although not of the sinuses, did pick up on a sinus infection.  I had a sinus CT done with my first ENT a month and half ago who I later found out did not take my insurance so I had to leave him.  He wanted to possibly do surgery for a blocked sinus but wasnt sure this was what was causing my issue.  Anyway, my primary dr said I  also had bloodwork that came back concerning so I had to have more done which they said came back better. The lymph nodes dont surprise me because I have been saying for months that the left side of my neck, ear and throat feels swollen.  It is relentless and scary for me.  The further tests, he said, were looking for cancers and lymphomas and he said those came back okay.  I had to wait several days for them....STRESS.  The dr said the lymph nodes combined with the bloodwork, in his opinion, means that I am fighting an infection.  However, I have been on(and still am right now) 4 rounds of pretty strong antibiotics since September so that I do not understand at all.  If its an infection then why doesnt it go away with the antibiotics.  And why doesnt the ENT seem concerned?  He(the primary dr) thinks this is all sinus related as I have had this post nasal drip that wont go away since this all started. However, I do not have a stuffed nose.  He gave me some antibiotics to put right into a neti pot to try to treat the sinuses directly.  And in my opinion its not helping.  I am also having pressure on the left side of my head, as well as my neck and ear.  I am hoping it is just the post nasal drip causing the cough that I am having.  I have been on tons of different meds and nothing seems to be working.  This is extremely frustrating to me because before this I was not on any medicine and for the last 5 months I cant seem to get past whatever this is that is going on. I told the dr its ironic that I finally started taking care of myself, lost 65 lbs and now I am not feeling well.

So...then the ENT dr called me and said the scan looks fine overall and he doesnt need to see me until my next appt...a month away.  What?  The other dr just called and said I had enlarged lymph nodes, bad blood results, and a sinus infection.  Yet he is not concerned?  The primary dr said that to the specialist that isnt all that bad because they see the worst of the worst, and he will treat me until I get back to the ENT.  So now I wait.  For what I dont know.  I will keep using the neti pot with the antibiotics and hope it starts working.  I am just hoping we are barking up the right tree here.  I am trying so hard to be patient.  I just want to feel better and I hope that I do soon.  I feel that I will have a new appreciation for life, and health, and my body if I can just get past this.

Please keep me in your prayers.  And if anyone knows anyone who could possibly add a little insight to my situation I would be open to hearing it.  There are no doctors in my family  :(

I hope you are all doing well!

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Todays weigh in (Jennifer)

Today I hopped on the scale and it was different.  It wasnt with hesitation, or nerves, or even excitement.  It was more of a "lets see where I am at" thought.  The verdict:   166.  Not too shabby.  Right in *my range* where I have been hanging out for several months, even when I was counting calories and exercising regularly.  It kind of does excite me that when all this medical stuff gets out of the way and I can really pursue some intense exercise that my weight may really start to drop.  I am happy with 166 right now.  Of course its not my goal weight but it reassures me that mentally I am where I should be in the weight loss world.  

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

A quick update (Jennifer)

A quick update.  I have not been paying too much attention to my eating and in an amazing way it feels great.  There is no guilt and I am feeling like a "normal" person eating normal portions of normal food.  Wow...I never thought that day would come.  I havent been on the scale in a few days but the last I checked I was about 168.  Still in my "my range".

I greatly look forward to the nice weather to begin my running and such again but right now that is not what's on my mind.  I am still not feeling well and have been back to the dr.  I have the new ENT and the new primary dr.  The primary took my bloodwork and said my white count is a bit high and wanted me to have it redone along with some other tests.  I went yesterday for that.  Then he had a call with my ENT and they decided I needed two CT scans... yesterday.  Yup, ordered them and I had them in the same day.  I was a nervous wreck.  I havent heard on the latest bloodwork but my dr himself did call me last night at 6:00 with my preliminary CT results.  He said my lymph nodes are enlarged on the left side.  I kind of knew that since I havent felt good in that area in months...  He also said that although they did not scan my sinuses again it did pick up on a sinus infection.  I have been on 4 rounds of antibiotics and I am even on them now so I do not understand this.  I am hoping that is what is causing all my my issues.  I am forever clearing my throat and have awful post nasal drip on top of all of this.  I am going to call my ENT tomorrow to make sure he got the CT results and see what is next.  Obviously the antibiotics are not working for me.  I dont want to be a pain in the butt to them but I dont want to wait until my next appt which is scheduled sometime in March.

I pray all of this gets worked out soon so I can be on my way to a healthier me.  Yesterday I was praying to God and I had this realization about what is important in life.  An epiphany? Health is important.  Family is important.  Self love is important.  It made me realize that I cannot sweat the little things in life and let them get me down.  I need to stop and smell the roses so to speak. I found myself asking God to make me better and telling Him that I have learned my lesson and that I will be much more appreciative in life.  I hope I do get better and past whatever this illness is so I can move on in my life as a much healthier person, both body and mind.

Wow.  That was deep.  Thanks to you all for your continued support and kindness.  I apologize for the lack of blogging but I figured most people dont want to hear about all this medical drama on my weight loss blog so I figured I would keep it at a minimum.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Normal (Jennifer)

My friend gave me the rest of her Medifast food which was very nice of her.  The only problem is that I didnt get it until Monday...and the inlaws came to stay with us this weekend.  Those of you who read regularly know that this is such a struggle for me.  I like when they come because I love to have company, but my MIL brings so much yummy, and definately healthy food with her...every single time  She is diabetic, yet doesnt seem to pay much attention to it :(    Anyway, the first day I did okay.  I stayed on plan and all was well even thoug I did struggle.  Day 2 came and I totally caved.  Now...I am the first to admit to my failures, but in this case I really have to say that a huge part of this was not having many MF foods that are appealing to me, or still in date for that matter. 

However, I got on the scale this morning and saw that I am still at 170.6.  Not my lowest but I didnt gain any of the weight I lost on MF for those few days :)   So, now I have some MF foods that I like and I am in debate about what to do with them.  I know I want to use them.  I am thinking that instead of doing the plan 100% that I might use them as my daily foods (about 500 calories or so) and then eat a nice dinner(not a restricted one as on plan) and also exercise.  I say this because yesterday I went to the gym and it was great.  I felt great all day.  So, I am thinking of doing a modified type plan.  Most of the foods I have I like so it wont be an issue there, and I dont see any harm in eating them, regardless of whether I am on any plan, because they are so packed with vitamins and minerals. 

While thinking about this today I had a comforting feeling come over me.  I felt like I am capable of eating well and that I am at no risk of going back to the Old Jen and the old eating habits.  It was very comforting to feel that.   Plus, my husband said something last week to me while I was in debate whether I should continue MF.  He said that I have come so far and that I can eat the way I want to within reason and if I exercise it will be okay.  I can indulge here and there while still making good eating choices most of the time. Exercise is the key he said.  And he is right.  That has been the missing variable for so many years.  Although I may have struggled over the past few months when I step back and look at the big picture I see that I have been living life and really havent done too bad!  Normal peoples weight fluctuates a few pounds.  Normal people indulge a little during the holidays.  Normal people can indulge and then eat well again for the next meal.  Maybe I have become normal?  Could it be?  What wasnt normal was the Old Jen who indulged every single day of life at every single meal.  Wow...this is pretty eye opening for me.

Still not feeling great...going to start all the meds the dr gave me(5) tomorrow-including more steroids. I am praying that something works and we can get this figured out.  Thanks to you all for your kind comments along the way.  It really means the world to me.