Wednesday, June 17, 2009
Posting and Pouting......
I have decided to make this post to tell each of you how much I appreciate your support on my blog. When I started this, I had no idea anyone would find anything I had to say in the least worth reading. You all are such a blessing to me!
I am so far behind on visiting your blogs. I have tried to read and comment as often as I could. I just seem to be getting more and more behind. As you all know, losing my husband has left a large hole in my heart. Dealing with the grief has been at times both overwhelming and totally debilitating to me.
While dealing with my grief, I am also dealing with a chronic illness that is getting more and more out of control. I have idiopathic gastroparesis with chronic intestinal psuedo-obstruction. All of those words simply mean that my vagus nerve does not deliver the necessary electrical impulses to my stomach or intestinal muscles to make them work correctly.
Food does not move through my digestive system in a timely manner. There are no known cures for this ailment. However, there are treatment options available. In October, 2004, I had a gastric stimulator implanted with leads attached to my vagus nerve in the abdominal area. It works somewhat like a heart pacemaker in that it delivers the electrical stimulation needed to help my stomach empty into my intestinal tract and then on into my colon and out of my body.
I have suffered with severe alternating constipation and diarrhea for most of my life. The stimulator has made it less troublesome, but it is not a cure. Episodic constipation can result in no bowel movements for 2 weeks or more. Conversely, I have episodes of diarrhea so bad that the food goes quite literally straight through me. I eat and then go immediately to the bathroom to empty.
My original stimulator quit working in the fall of 2006 and was replaced in December, 2006. That stimulator stopped working sometime before last Thanksgiving. Because my husband was so sick and I could not be away for surgery, I opted to just live with it and do the best I could. After Terry went home in January, I scheduled an appointment with my doctor at Vanderbilt in Nashville.
He tested me and, surely enough, the stimulator was completely dead. After an ordeal with Medicare, I was finally able to get on the surgery schedule, but not until July 10. In the meantime, my body is quickly reverting to the old patterns. Constipation is an everyday problem, with bowel movements now coming only about weekly, if then. I am nauseated 24/7 and throw up 15-20 times daily.
I am losing weight, which in and of itself is not a bad thing, it's just the method that's bad! My blood count is now low and I am trying to avoid having to go in for blood prior to surgery. I have ruptured two blood vessels in my stomach due to excessive vomiting. My body cannot manufacture red blood cells quickly enough due to what my body perceived as mal-nutrition. I am also having other symptoms of mal-nutrition even though I continue to be overweight.
I have said all that to say this, I am sorry I haven't been around to visit as often as I should. I miss the visits. I enjoy each of the blogs I visit so very much and I enjoy each of you who write them. You have all become such wonderful new friends! Please just be patient with me and pray for me. As soon as I can get the stimulator replaced on July 10, I expect to begin to feel better almost immediately and be back to myself again.
So, if I don't come around and comment, it's not because I don't enjoy you and your blog, it is simply because I'm just too sick sometimes to be able to sit and read. I find myself more and more needing to just lie quietly and/or sleep. I will be back, Lord willing!!!!