Thursday, October 14, 2010

Soap Opera Thursday: Who poisoned who?

I kind of feel like I'm in a terrible, typical soap opera. I keep finding "illegitimate" children (Illnesses) that no one knew about, myself included, but are a product of choices I unwittingly made....like environment, pushing myself too far, exposing myself to contagions, etc...
I have my "lovers", i.e., doctors, who each know "secrets" about me, stay with me for a while, but go by the wayside or in the dump when I'm "done with them", or are tired of the ways things were progressing. Like yesterday. We didn't even go to the final consultation with one of my pain specialists, Dr. Srini, who did the two bilateral shoulder muscle and shoulder cap cortisol shots. My mum just called, thanked him for his time and expertise, told him about my negative reactions to the shots, and that we would be seeking other pain alternatives--elsewhere. *shrug*
Poor guy.
*sigh*
Anyway.
Where was I....Soap opera...yes. Well, I will stop with that analogy here: Most of the twists and turns are "for the worse".
And here is a continuation of why that is true....

I went to my main doctor, Dr. Fetters, today. We were getting the face to face meeting about the results from my heavy metal poisoning test. Yeah, the one where the nurse wouldn't even tell us what was wrong, only that the doctor was moving our date up so we could meet f2f. It turns out that the test was abnormal because I was the only patient he had EVER seen with such radically high levels of lead in their body. I mean VERY high levels. My bones and muscles are steeped in it... =/...The scary part is that we have no idea how I would have gotten even mild lead poisoning. I haven't ingested it, or been involved in ANY of the activities that could expose one to mild lead content, except the occasional painting foray. But that stopped months before this whole thing started. I haven't painted since. It's too much work, and it hurts my shoulders. So the levels shouldn't be that high! ARGH.

It made me laugh though to hear that I was the ONLY patient he had ever seen with lead poisoning of this magnitude. I was more than halfway into the red zone of high toxicity (the highest part on the toxicity chart!!). And here's the best part. The treatment is special pills that we build up over four weeks until I take 4 pills 3 times a day on an empty stomach....and then I'll do that for 4 months...so, a month buildup, and then 4 months (typically...he says it might take longer in my case) of intensive internal pill therapy to get the lead out of my bones and muscles. Only then can I start to recover from the poisoning.
The side effects of the lead poison?
Increased pain, spasms and twitching, "colic" (part of the reason I can't eat, it turns out), headaches, chest pain, fatigue, and a compromised immune system. Sound familiar? There's also the added dangers of damage to every organ in my body (especially Kidneys, nervous system and brain), cognitive and behavioral problems, neurological disorders, neuropathy, and even insomnia, hyperactivity, irritability, coma and sometimes death. Lovely. So lovely. =/ We're just lucky to have caught it.

Another "turn of events" has shown that I also have almost no Zinc in my body, which, combined with magnesium, is the body's natural mineral defense against heavy metal poisoning (*grunt* No surprise there). It bonds with the lead, causing it to become inert and flushed out of the body. It's rare to have someone with essentially no Zinc in their bodies...but again, I am that one in a million. *disgusted sigh* Joy and elation, let me tell you.

This is also in addition to the severe vitamin D deficiency that they identified earlier (not to mention all the other problems I have listen in previous posts. Those are still the same. No change =( ). It seems that Lead compromises your ability to retain and produce Vitamin D as well, making things worse in that area too. A few of the side effects of even basic low vitamin D? Pain, spasms, headaches, sensitive nerves, the lot. So, all my deficiencies are causing my Fibro to be even worse than it already is. Hence, my near crippling at present. Sometimes I can barely even walk from my room to the bathroom, which is right next door. I've never felt so weak in my life.

We can eventually fix those deficiencies with intensive long term medicine regimes and immune system care. But those are only aggravating factors. Once those are dealt with (5 months at the absolute soonest), we'll have to deal with that pathogen in my system. You see, we can't start me on antibiotics for that right now because my immune system is so suppressed by the Lead, fibro, and various other problems. The only treatments they have work in tandem with your body, but don't deal with the issue completely on their own. So the lead has to be gone, essentially. Still. Once we deal with the pathogen, we can then hopefully give me some relief in joint pain. Then we can try to get my acidosis (high acidic bodily fluids and muscle tissue) under control. I have an almost completely acid based fluid content right now, the kind that makes my doctor say "god, how can you be this bad?!"
Yeah. That makes me feel soooo much better. Thanks doc.

So, I guess you could say it's "good news" in that we can treat all of the new developments with time and medicine. But it's still bad news that with every test and every new idea of things we "could try and test for", we inevitably always turn up with something abnormal, strange, unusual, and/or extreme. I'm getting pretty tired of the whole downward spiral thing, where all I get is bad news on top of my already high pain and severe downturn in my ability to function.
But God's there with me. I'm not sure what He wants to teach me in those 5 months of treatment for poisoning that He couldn't teach me in 5 months of overall improvement, but then, I don't see the whole picture.

I'll just keep plugging away, nose to the grindstone, pedal to the metal, hope in a sack on my back on the journey to freedom. Whatever you want to call it.

And I will be tested even further with how well I can keep a positive attitude about things in the next two to three weeks, starting Sunday. That's when we're moving out of the house. I hate to say it, but the thought of leaving my "comfortable" zone of the house and immediate area, where I know what my limits are, where things are, who I am, and how to survive (from years of learning those limits), is causing me to have mini panic attacks. Increased breathing rate, the temptation to hyperventilate, shaking, nausea, tightness and pain, and even the sensation that I could burst into tears...it all floods at once. It's hard to not be in control of myself! My mum and I agree that it's partly my medications talking. But that alone is causing us to take special note: Should we put me up at a friend's house, where the family is pretty mellow and I can be around surroundings and places and people that I know (a suggestion that doesn't cause too much anxiety), but would keep me further from my family and my mum's watchful care, or go with my family up to a house about 40 minutes away from my house, far from hospitals, doctors, friends, familiar areas, etc....
With my brain fog, inability to drive long distances because I have to be off my narcotic to drive, inability to withstand trips of too many hours (which would happen with appointments and such), and the panic such separation causes, I'm not sure if I can literally survive being up at that house. Even typing about it makes my stomach clench and my head pound.
It's sad, really. But it's a fact. And right now, it's a major concern. We're afraid that the panic might cripple me and exhaust me to the point of hospitalization far more than being way from my mum. We'll just have to see. Logically, I can see how staying with my family could be advantageous, and why it would be my mum's favorite choice. I hate to impose on people. But in reality, I'm not sure I can do it in my present physical and emotional state. We'll be deciding Friday or Saturday which place I'll be staying, so that's something you can please pray about.

Other than that, life has been normal. For you all who aren't in my shoes, my life is anything but normal, I know. But I hope you can at least relate to bits and pieces. I just wish I could be in your shoes for even an hour. You know what it's like to feel "tired"...I only feel "Exhausted" on the good days. You know what it's like to feel healthy....I can't even remember what it's like to feel just a tad achy, let alone pain and ailment free. But we both know what it's like to persevere. And so with you and God I walk, facing the challenges still before me, and praying that my present trials will soon be over with, if such be God's will.
The Lord be praised no matter what though.
You know that line, "I will praise Him through the fire"? Well, I am. And doing so is a great comfort and strengthener.
Do you have anything that is weighing on your heart? That feels heavy and hard to bear? Lay it at God's feet, calling out to Him and praising Him for His goodness, and willingness to make even the heaviest of burdens light. The release and freedom from that simple act is amazing.

Be well, my friends. Be far better off than me, although that is not hard to do. And smile at someone today. Give them a hug, a letter, a note of encouragement, or a thoughtful gift. You will show them that they are loved, and that is a gift beyond measure, and without price.

Good day, my Muselings!
-Rae

2 comments:

Oddyoddyo13 said...

Here's hoping things get better. You've got my well wishes, and I am sending good vibes your way!

*closes eyes, rubs temples, hums*

Calandreya said...

I'm extremely grateful they've found at least one problem they can treat! Has the rest of your family been tested for lead poisoning? I'm thinking they should be, if not, in case it's environmental and affecting everyone. And, if it isn't, that narrows down your sources, considerably.

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