Friday, March 30, 2012

On the Mend

I’m certain that March 17 was the worse medical day of my life. But fortunately, every day since then I have felt a little better. The Crohn’s and the meds, not sure which one contributed more, made my muscles and joints hurt all over. I couldn’t sleep for days due to the pain in my muscles. I hurt so bad a couple of the days I had to walk with a cane. 

I’m still not 100% but I’m certainly doing much better. My muscle and joint pain is gone now, but I still need about ten hours sleep. With enough sleep, however, I have enough energy to actively make it through each day now. Yay.

My gut is not quite normal yet. But there’s been improvement there too. My appetite has returned, but I’m not digesting normal quite yet. Bowel movements have improved, but they also are not normal quite yet.

Now this week, I’ve been very bad on the diet. Meaning, I haven’t followed it most of the week. I figured since the medication is managing my symptoms, I was going to take the opportunity to eat all of my favorite foods. So I did:)

I’ve still eaten vegetarian, but I’ve had vegan pizza, Mexican, pasta, a salad with thousand island dressings, Krispy Kreme donuts, and ice cream (almond milk based). All of this has slowed down my recovery I’m certain, but I know I will not be able to eat this as I wean off the medication and certainly won’t be able to do so once I’m off the meds, so I took this week and cheated massively!

Tomorrow starts the healing diet again so I can get to feeling 100% and begin to wean myself off the meds again.

You really don’t know how enjoyable the taste of certain foods are until you haven’t had it for months and then have it again. It was a wonderful tasteful week!

Sunday, March 18, 2012

A Turn for the Worse

The fatigue continued to get worse and worse. I first started going to sleep at 9 p.m. so that I’d have enough energy to get up and make it through a work day. But then, that wasn’t early enough, and I began going to sleep by 8 p.m. and even then I didn’t have enough energy to make it through the day. So I literally began going to sleep when I got home from work. I’d get something to eat and then get to sleep by 6:30 p.m. and even then, with twelve hours sleep, my day was a struggle.

My appetite had been non-existent and because I was only awake 12 hours a day I was missing meals. Because of the lack of energy, preparing food hasn’t been a priority either, so I’ve lost about 5 lbs in the past two weeks. I’m really thin compared to any time in my life. I don’t think I’ve weighed 120 lbs since I was in junior high school. I really don’t want to lose any more weight, but I just haven’t had the energy to prepare food or eat.

Friday, the 16th, and my birthday, things came to a head and I left work early. I cancelled my evening plans, and was in bed by 3 p.m. Yet Saturday, I awoke at 10:00 a.m. just to realize that I didn’t have any more energy than when I went to sleep. This was the worse day I have had since my diagnosis, and may actually have been my worse ever, even compared to the days prior to my diagnosis that I refer to as my walking zombie days.

I have been soooo strict on the healing diet, yet things got worse and worse. Dr. Azar says you cleanse in layers, and this did not surprise her. But ultimately, I have been feeling ill since the end of January, and I cannot continue this way.

I made the decision Friday night to start back on the medication. Dr. Sigmon had recommended that I start back up on the mesalamine, which is an anti-inflammatory, the last two times I have seen him. I didn’t listen and tried to manage things holistically. But Friday night it became evident that I would have a long painful road ahead of me if I were to continue holistically.

I started back on the mesalamine Friday night. But when I awoke Saturday feeling so bad after seventeen hours sleep, I also started on the budesonide. Budesonide is an immune system suppressant and corticosteroid. I really didn’t want to start taking this, but I felt so miserable, so much so that I couldn’t image that the mesalamine alone would make an impact in a timely basis. Mesalamine is really meant to keep Crohn’s in remission, not to manage a flare up and clearly I was having a sever flare up.

I have already taken many days off of work this year, and I can’t afford to take another two weeks off right now which was the picture in my mind that would occur if I relied upon the mesalamine alone.

I’m very disappointed that back on the meds. But holistically working through this will take much longer and require much more time off work, and I don’t know how to keep my job with the amount of time I believe this disease would require curing holistically.

So I’m back on the meds. I feel better today than yesterday, but keep in mind, yesterday I was like the walking dead. I only got up to eat and use the rest room.

Oh yeah, in all of this of course, my bowel movements are all messed up. I almost didn’t make it to the toilet in enough time on Friday night. That would have been very embarrassing.

Now, the side effects of the meds have my muscles and joints fatigued everywhere. I had so much pain in my left ankle yesterday, I had to use a cane to get around the house. Of course I have Stephanie and Rick taking care of Rusty, because I don’t have enough energy to walk him.

Last time I was on the meds, it took about 4 to 5 days in order for me to have enough strength to make it through a work day. Tonight will make 2 full days. I really hope I can get back to work before Wednesday.

Any ways, once I am feeling good again and all my symptoms are gone, I do plan on weaning of the medication again, in an attempt to stay of the meds this time.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

I Just Want To Feel Healthy Again

The weekend of February 25, I was up at Beech Mountain with my boyfriend Rich, for the totally retro 80s weekend. It was quite fun actually, but I had no energy at all. I just felt drained the entire weekend. It felt like I had a mild fever and all I wanted to do was rest. Since I was in the middle of a Crohn's flare up, I just assumed that my fatigue and mild fever was related to the flare up.

But come Tuesday evening, I was so tired and felt feverish, and sure enough, my temperature was over 103. I assume that I had the flu because my fever hit over 103 through the next Saturday. In addition to the fever, I felt like I had arthritis in all my joints, had sinus and head congestion, massive fatigue, and a nasty cough. Just to put fuel on the fire, I also got this awful fever blister. My upper lip swelled up so much it looked like Angelina Jolie on botox! Seriously! 

This weekend, I was supposed to go to Louisville, KY, with Rich. His daughter is playing in a volleyball tournament there. I had to cancel, and instead, I'm home just resting. I still have the nasty cough, and massive fatigue. It seems that all the symptoms are running together. I'm not sure if I'm recovering from the flu or just dealing with cleansing symptoms.

This past week, I did return to work, but at then end of each day I was so tired. I've been going to sleep no later than 9:00 p.m. and getting at lease 10 hours sleep each day and it doesn't seem to be enough. Last night I slept 12 hours! That's crazy. 

My holistic doctor, Dr. Azar, says I'm going through a deeper layer of cleansing, and the fatigue and cough and fever has a lot to do with the effects of cleansing. If you've been reading this blog, you know that my healing diet, is also a cleansing diet, and I've been very strict at adhering to this diet over the past month because I simply want to feel healthy again, and cheating on the diet, I believe is what triggered the most recent flare up.

So, I'm on the most boring healing diet without any variance. I eat a banana smoothie for breakfast, a honeydew or cantaloupe for lunch. I have juice each day consisting of celery, carrots, red pepper, cucumber, romaine and an apple, and my dinner is either sweet potatoes, potatoes or acorn squash. This diet not only is perfect for creating an alkaline environment in my GI tract, but the juice is also great for improving my anemic condition.

This is the diet I have been following for about a month. Now and then I'll have mango, raisins, or pears. In any regard, I'm so bored with the diet, but at the same time, it's now just something I do without thinking about it.

I just want to feel healthy again...

If I just keep getting my rest and sticking to the diet, I should feel better soon.