Back in December, I got sick. I thought it was just a sinus infection. The doctor gave me meds and it went away. All was well in my world, or so I thought. Less than a month later, the sinus infection along with a horrible cough was back. The doctors were reluctant to give me another antibiotic, which I get, because they don’t want to over prescribe. They gave me cough medicine with codeine, and Benzonatate, neither of which did jack for my cough.
I was miserable, people I work with were sick of listening to me cough all day long, and my family was over hearing me cough all night long. Back to the doctor I went and they decided that another antibiotic was indeed in order. Again, it worked and all was well in my world.
Until the cough came back with a vengeance. Nothing was touching this cough. I ate cough drop after cough drop, I tried using a neti pot, over the counter cough remedies and home remedies. And still my cough remained, so back to the doctor I went.
They decided that the best course of treatment was a steroid, coupled with a chest x-ray. My chest had been clear all through this, but they just wanted to make sure. So I took the steroid and I had the chest x-ray. It was a miracle, the steroid worked and my cough went away. But then the call came – my lymph nodes were enlarged and they wanted to do a CAT scan.
So I scheduled the CAT scan and had the necessary blood work done for that – or so I thought. The phlebotomist who drew the blood did a crappy job and I had a bruise and a lump on my arm that could probably be seen from outer space. My students kept asking who bit me, it was that bad. I also got my cough back which resulted in another round of steroids. And as I found out the day of the CAT scan, she didn’t run the right tests. I was ready to walk out then and there because I did not want more blood drawn, but the nice tech at the CAT scan place drew some blood before she hooked up the IV I needed and ran the test really quick.
The cat scan was painless and done very quickly and the results came fairly quickly as well. Yes my lymph nodes were enlarged and my doctor referred me to someone for a biopsy. Now I was starting to get scared. They were tossing out words like lymphoma and another word I had never head of, sarcoidosis. My doctor sent me to another doctor. I went for the appointment and the next thing I know they’re escorting me to another doctor in the hospital who wants to see me right away. “But don’t worry, nothing is really wrong,” they said. “We’re just going to walk you right over there.” Yeah, that freaked me out. I met with the nice doctor and he decided that the biopsy was going to be done next week. “It’s not really a big deal but we want to get it done right away.” Sorry, but all this stuff happining fast screamed big deal to me, but hey, what do I know, right? Anyhow, the biopsy was scheduled and I was quietly freaking out.
I had the biopsy, and the doctor told me I’d probably get the results in 5 to 7 days. I also got another a funnerific cough courtesy of the endoscopy tube shoved down my throat. I was quite surprised when the doctor called me the next night to give me the results. I was confident all along that it wasn’t lymphoma, and I was right. But it is sarcoidosis. He also heard my delightful cough and prescribed another round of steroids. I should be ballooning up like Violet Beauregard from Willie Wonka fame any time now.
After I got my new script filled, I did what any other person in my position would have done. I took to the interwebs to find information. I went to intelligent sites like Mayo Clinic and Web MD but then I made a HUGE mistake and I turned to facebook and looked for support groups. I thought I would find a lot of information from people dealing with the same thing, and there was some good information, but there was also a lot of poor me and boo hoo and I’m so miserable. I get it. I really do. I’m feeling all whiney and boo hooey myself, but I refuse to get in a funk about this. I’m a huge proponent of positive thinking, and I do believe that your mental outlook can go a long way toward repairing your body.
So where I stand right now is in a sea of uncertainty. I don’t know who I’m supposed to be seeing for treatment, I don’t know what type of sarcoidosis I have – apparently there are many different types. I don’t know anything other than I’m on a steroid. I don’t like not knowing anything, but that’s where I am right now. I guess I’ll be reaching out to my doctor to find out what is next in this process of healing and getting this disease into remission. I’ve been slacking a bit on my diet, my doctor actually said just to wait until I got the biopsy dealt with and school was out, because my stress level has been sky high. She didn’t see any point in worrying about keto and macros and all that because I was just stressing out more.
I know that eating healthy will be good and exercising is good, and eliminating stress is also good. However, it’s hard to exercise when you are coughing up a storm, and stress, well I’m a magnet for stress, but I’m still going to try. It’s small baby steps. Like I’m not doing serious keto and I’m not counting macros, but I’m not going to eat french fries and potato chips all day every day. I can’t do hard core exercise right now, but I can walk, and if I have to stop and cough, so be it. As far as the stress goes – I really just need this school year to be done. That is a big part of my stress right there for reasons I won’t go into here, but anyone who knows me knows what I’m talking about!
I have this disease, but this disease does not have me.