The beginning of my story… Chronic illness that came “out of the blue”
I’m getting more and more excited to publish my first book… I wanted to share just a glimpse into my story that will be continued in the book.
When I scheduled my elective surgery for June of 2004, I had absolutely no idea that anything was wrong with me. As far as I knew, I was a healthy 24 year-old who simply was finally going to get the breast reduction that I had wanted since I was 16 years old. Although I was apprehensive about what is still a major surgery and unsure how painful my recovery would be, I was looking forward to the end result.
As the day of my surgery approached, I went through the standard pre-op procedure. Appointments with my surgeon, pre-op blood-work, and waiting for the day of the surgery to arrive. Then the night before my surgery, I received a call from my surgeon. He told me that he had received my pre-op bloodwork back and that the results looked abnormal. My heart began to race…
The surgeon first said that it could be some sort of error with the lab results themselves and asked me to return to the hospital to have the tests run again to make sure of what was going on. Panic was beginning to wash over me. I tried to stay hopeful that it was just a lab error or glitch but hearing something looked “off” was unnerving. We repeated the labs and they showed the same abnormal results.
Another call from the surgeon confirmed that surgery needed to be cancelled because there was something “wrong with me.” The surgeon said I should follow up with my primary doctor as soon as possible to investigate what was going on. My mind was racing. “I feel fine… I feel absolutely fine. What the hell is going on??”
The next day I saw my primary doctor who ordered more bloodwork to try and figure out what was going on. After the labs were drawn, I went home to await the results. I was filled with anxiety about what the lab tests would show was wrong with me. It felt like I had woken up in the middle of a nightmare. Again, it made no sense how I could feel completely fine and yet be told that something big was going on with my health.
Next thing I knew, I got a phone call from a gastroenterologist who I had never heard of asking me how I was feeling. “I feel ok,” I said as I felt a wave of panic rising up over me. He replied that since I wasn’t feeling any symptoms, it was ok to stay home that night but that I should report to the local hospital first thing the next morning, where I would be admitted, and he would see me there. Then he told me “If you start to feel any symptoms, come to the hospital tonight.” Well that was certainly unnerving to hear… I suddenly felt like a ticking time bomb that could go off at any moment.
I was completely shaken after this phone call from an unknown doctor and I waited nervously, continuously scanning through my body to make sure I felt ok until the next morning. In my mind I wondered what exactly I should be looking for in terms of symptoms but no mysterious symptoms appeared as I scanned my body repeatedly through the day and evening. What followed was a long afternoon, evening, and night of waiting and wondering but I was still feeling fine on a physical level so I didn’t report to the hospital until the next morning.
I hope this glimpse into the beginning of my story has peaked your attention and you will be excited to read more. Stay tuned for future sneak peaks into my story and my new book!