Sunday, March 10, 2013

Week 9: Self-Diagnosis Says...

One year ago today, in Kawazu, Japan, for the cherry blossom festival:

How time flies!

This week started off with a snow storm, that turned to rain and started melting away the snow...all in the same day of course, because I live in the Maritimes.

I had an appointment with my audiologist on Monday afternoon and she went over my latest hearing test results (from meeting with the specialist a couple of weeks ago) in more detail. The short version being, that my hearing has deteriorated a fair amount - where I was at about a 40-60% loss before, I am now looking at a 60-80% loss. We discussed next steps, and I go back again at the end of this week.

I found myself in tears on the way home. This is nothing new, I've been living with this for 10 years now. I was upset when I was first diagnosed, but I thought I had come to terms with it, the fact that things would likely get worse...But I guess it's different when you are faced with the reality of it. I am doing my best to focus on how fortunate I am that I have options, and that hearing aids are so much better now, and getting better all the time. It's still hard though.

By Monday, I was also feeling exhausted again, which probably didn't help matters. When I got home, I was flipping through a magazine and happened to see something about fatigue and Iron deficiency. So I looked it up and saw a list of familiar symptoms - fatigue, headaches, feeling weak, shortness of breath, inability to concentrate, dizziness; that describes exactly how I've been feeling.

How does one have these symptoms and not clue in that something might be wrong? I'm just so used to being tired. I get tired easily, I've always been that way. When I start to get over-tired, to the point that I can't keep up with things, I just try to take it easy, rest up, wait it out. This time, things were pretty extreme, but when you get in the habit of ignoring something, I suppose  you need some sort of wake-up call to realize there is more to it.

On Tuesday I bought iron supplements and started taking them right away. By the second day I was starting to feel better. I'm still not bursting with energy, but I don't feel half dead and that is a huge improvement.

I did make a doctor's appointment as well. This seems like something I should get checked out, and I'm not sure what the deal is with iron supplements - how long one should keep taking them, for example.

I haven't mentioned this to Husband, since he is still away and I don't want him to worry. I'm expecting a rousing chorus of "I told you so!" when I do tell him. He's been saying for years that I need to eat more red meat, then I wouldn't be so cold all the time.

I have actually been looking up the iron content of everything I eat as well. I eat lots of things that contain iron, just not necessarily in large quantities.

Anyway, I feel like there is a light at the end of the tunnel now. I'm honestly still being pretty lazy. I forced myself to work out on Monday & Tuesday, because I'd been feeling like I couldn't just sit back and give in...But since then I just haven't been able to make myself do it. I'm not really feeling bad about that, truth to tell. But since I am feeling better, I'm hoping this coming week I'll be back in the game.


Let me in! It's snowing out here!

On Thursday, I went to see Ray's Reptile Zoo on my lunch break because I wanted to see the Lynx.  Her name is Hazard. She did not appear to be impressed with the proceedings. Don't you just wish you could give her a hug?


MIz said...

Im so like you in that when I feel theres light (A DIAGNOSIS! A DIGANOSIS!!) I feel so much brighter.


Christy said...

I've known so many women around my age (not sure how old you are, i'm 37)who have been diagnosed with an iron deficiency. Like you, they just thought they were tired and thought it was a normal feeling. So glad you booked a doc appt and are hopefully going to get some help in this area. SOrry to hear about your hearing, I can't even imagine. I would have done the same, broken down in tears. Yes, there are options and yes, things could be worse, but don't let that take away from the way you feel, you have every right to feel that way. xo

JavaChick said...

Thanks Christy, it's nice to have someone understand. It's hard to know my hearing is fading away and there's nothing I can do about it.

And I'm coming up on 43 at the end of April, so we're not so far off in age.

Jess said...

Oh I'm so sorry to hear about your hearing. It is really tough and you probably needed a good cry. I hope you feel better with the iron. I was really anemic during my pregnancy and I found that changing my diet helped a lot. Also consuming vitamin c while you take iron or iron rich foods helps you absorb the iron better.

Anonymous said...

You need to take/eat vitamin C with the iron so that it is better absorbed.

JavaChick said...

Thanks guys! I do get a fair amount of Vitamin C through my diet, and my iron supplement actually has Vitamin C in it as well. I think I'm pretty good there. :)