Friday was my big appointment with the rheumatologist. The one I’ve been waiting months for.
It was supposed to be DIAGNOSIS Day. I was supposed to find DIRECTION. We were going to develop a plan of attack and beat this thing. I was hoping for lots of ANSWERS!!! (Okay, so that doesn’t start with ‘D,’ but still …)
Well, none of that happened.
Instead I felt DISMISSED. The doc treated me like I was a wee bit DELUSIONAL. It was a huge DEAD END.
In short, it was really DUMB!!!
DUMB, I tell you!
Okay, enough with the ‘D’s. You get the idea. Truthfully, I’m just trying to add some levity to a situation that is totally infuriating!
So … What did the good doctor say?
She disagrees with all four of my other doctors. Basically her ‘expert opinion’ is that there is nothing wrong with me, and I just need to recover from my ordeal in the hospital. (Apparently losing 40 lbs and most of my hair and still struggling to walk almost 5 months later is just run-of-the-mill?)
She recommended physical therapy for my painful joints, said I should probably see a neurologist about the tremor in my hands, and asked me to follow up with her in 3 months. She’s running some blood work “just in case,” but is “pretty sure none of it will come back positive.” Really?
Um … I might not have a medical degree, but … Doesn’t it feel like we’re missing something?
Okay. So. I don’t have anything against doctors. In fact, I am immensely grateful for several fabulous doctors, some of which have literally saved my life on more than one occasion. My little brother is a doctor, and I know how much work and sacrifice goes into his trade.
However … Has anyone else had this experience with specialists? Like they feel the need to prove all the other doctors wrong … because they are the expert … and they know better?
I got the same attitude from a gastroenterologist eight years ago. Luckily he decided to “humor me” and do an endoscopy “just to prove nothing was wrong.” Not kidding. He actually said that. Well, good thing we took a peek because we found a softball-sized cyst, and my pancreas was bleeding into it. Right.
So what am I supposed to do now?
For one thing, I’m heading back to one of my doctors who actually gives a darn and has known me longer than five minutes. Next, the neurologist I guess? *sigh* So. Exhausted.
And do you know what’s really crazy? I didn’t sleep much last night. I started to wonder (again) if it’s all in my head … if somehow I did this to myself … if the rheumatologist is right–that there is nothing wrong with me.
Is it just me? Have you ever felt this way in the middle of a medical mystery? It’s all upside-down, I tell ya. Maddening.
On a lighter note … I got a sweet haircut today. I keep rubbing the back of my head and wondering where those last five long strands have gone. Haha! No more Beverly Hillbillies or Linus-look-alike hairstyles for me … at least for now. *wink, wink*
Also, I have been super distracted showering my Littlest for his birthday. (Our birthdays always last an entire week; it’s a family rule.) We did something very ‘constructive’ this year! It’s amazing what you can come up with when you’re too blasted tired to throw a party at the house!
Ridiculously cute pics to come. It’s time for some happy, fun stuff on my blog! Stay tuned.
Photo credit (top, WWII planes): Carnegie Science Center
9 thoughts on “My very own ‘D-Day’”
Long time, no commenting. I have just recently been catching up with your blog; I am SO sorry about your ordeal. But, for what it’s worth, I have been going through some very similar experiences (which is why I haven’t been blog-reading for some time), especially with feeling like a hot potato passed from doctor to doctor without getting the help I need. Some months ago I got a diagnosis of Chronic Fatigue to go along with my other health problems. The doctor told me ‘and there’s nothing to do about it, so we’re done here.’ To be the fair, the rheumatologist was a bit more sympathetic once I teared up (he was a very young man), but still, that was that. One endocrinologist actually YELLED at me when, after she told me she couldn’t help, I asked what I should do next. Like you, I have a few amazing doctors in my life, but none of them seem able to deal with all the pieces of my health issues, and I feel abandoned, stuck, mired, frustrated, outraged, sad, guilty (I must have done SOMETHING to bring this on, right? And if I were just a better, stronger, more determined person I could pull myself out of this morass, right? All I have to do is meditate, lose weight, change my diet, find support, take turmeric, sleep more, sleep less, use the right essential oils, go for acupuncture, adjust my aura, adjust my attitude, count my blessings, and I’ll be fine, right?), and more than anything else, I am exhausted — too exhausted to do all the research, to hassle my doctors, to demand the care everyone in real life and in the fora and the books say I should be demanding.
All I can offer is sympathy and solidarity and my deep and profound wish that your good health comes roaring back. I hope this birthday week (excellent idea, that) is full of joy and cake for everyone in your family.
Ugh! What a DISAPPOINTMENT!! I groan with you! I’m happy you do have a doctor who knows you whom you can go back to. But annoying to get no blessed results from this one. Hopefully she’ll realize something from the blood test.
You look super fly in your new do! Mwa!
First: sorry about typing your name in wrong. I had been e-mailing about a Melanie, and when I got started with that Mel… my fingers finished up without checking in with my brain.
My daughter just sent me this:
Even though what you have may not be ME, this speaker’s experience will resonate with you, and maybe with others of your readers as well.
[…] never forget one specialist who looked around, told me there was no storm at all, and walked away. She was supposed to be “the one.” The expert all the other doctors were […]
Thank you Ruth!
WORD! Thanks for the solidarity, friend! Love you!
Noooooooo! Well then, I’ll fight for answers for both of us! Let’s figure this out, huh? I’m laughing my head off at your checklist, which includes turmeric and sleeping more and sleeping less and essential oils … and you forgot yoga and PT … and a boat load of other things. They all sound mysteriously familiar. Haha. Cheers to you, sweet friend. We will BOTH make it through this quagmire!
It all gets maddening. But you stay so sane! I know you have awful days, probably moments of near-despair, and I’m not dismissing any of those terrible times (in fact, if you were NOT having any struggles, I’d worry), and that’s amazing.
Did I already share this link with you? The creator of these cards was thinking mostly of cancer victims, but I think you’ll appreciate them too:
[…] Occasionally I have lost my temper. […]