Finally Diagnosed

Today is a good day. Let me tell you why.

I am the queen of the word “through”. Get through, push through, power through… I say these things a lot. I’m super motivated, goal driven, a perfectionist and problem solver. Those things are like a magnet for stress. When you don’t know how to deal with stress in a healthy way, it can cause problems. There are obviously a lot of positive points to being this way, but stress is the major drawback.

Well, I went to the doctor last july and mentioned that I had a pain in my side and maybe it could be an ulcer and he dismissed it and diagnosed it as something else and suggested I started a more healthy diet. So I did and moved on but after a while the pain came back. I can’t tell you how worried I was. I was thinking something could be wrong with my pancreas or spleen or intestines and bowels. Theres just so much stuff over there to have a problem with. I worried about stomach cancer, and really every kind of cancer. I crawled into a dark mental corner of fear, assuming he worst. The pain came and went so I would think it’s gone and maybe it was all my imagination but then it came back and I was super confused.

I also assumed that our three month road trip at the beginning of last year and our month in China might have been too much added stress or maybe I got something in China, who knows. So off and on i’ve been really stressed and worried about this for a really long time now.

So why is today so great? Today is great because I got a new doctor here in kalamazoo and I recently went to him and said that I have a lot of stress in my life and I have this pain in my side, maybe it’s an ulcer. Again. Last guy said no but did no tests. So they take some blood which takes all of 5 minutes and we wait.

I get a call today and it’s the doctor telling me I do in fact have an ulcer. Not cancer, not dying, just an ulcer. Thats how I will take it for now. I guess you can get stomach cancer from ulcers but they (the internet) says thats quite rare and often happens to people more in their 50′s than their 20′s. It’s hard for me to not over-worry, but there isn’t anything I can do now but try to get rid of the bacteria first. Antibiotics should help me start feeling better really soon he says. It’s a few antibiotics together since I guess it’s a fairly serious infection since it takes so many not to mention it’s crazy expensive but at least we can be on the road to getting better. I can’t wait to feel better again and I just loathe myself for not putting myself before my work and getting this taken care of months ago.

This is a really long winded version of what could be a happy hooray it’s only an ulcer! But there’s a point to be made here that I have no problem sharing with on our “business” blog. It’s called I’m growing up and learning about what’s important.

I will no longer put off health concerns. I will no longer take my health for granted. I will solve the problem of stress in my life by learning how to cope with it before letting it destroy me. I am restructuring a lot of our business to make it more laid back but still make ends meet. I have not been living a healthy life, I’ve been living a life of work and stress. I love our work and it’s hard for me to not overwork so finding a balance has been tough.

If you know things about ulcers, your probably thinking ulcers are not caused by stress. Yes, that is true, it’s a bacteria. However, stress can irritate an ulcer which is probably why I felt so much of the pain when stressed or anxious. I’ve also read that extreme emotional or physical stress can be a factor in ulcers as well, but who knows if thats really true. The internet says a lot of stuff. I’ve been through some difficult things this year, more than I ever thought I could handle so that makes a lot of sense to me whether it has facts to back it up or not.

So now I’m trying to figure a way to get the antibiotics a little cheaper since the “pack” they prescribe does not come in a generic and it’s just an insane amount of money. I’m sure it will all work out though and there is nothing else I can do about it. If I have to pay it all then so be it to get this nasty bacteria out of my body so it can start healing itself. It’s going to be a rough 14 days on the antibiotics for me since my body does not enjoy them but I’m really praying it’s not as bad as I’m anticipating.

I hope this is the last ulcer I have in my life and maybe thats asking a lot. I just really pray this first round of antibiotics gets rid of it so this can be the end of it and I can go on with my life without pain all the time.

So, in the end, I guess it’s good news. It makes me realize in such a small way how much I’ve taken health for granted and I’m just not going to do that anymore. Feeling physically well is one of the greatest gifts in life that you don’t know you have until you don’t have it any more.

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