This blog post is part of a series of posts that began with what I wrote about how I almost died. Make sure to first read that one first and then the follow-up post after that before reading this one. Things will probably make more sense that way.
The good news is that I’m totally off the steroids and because of that, the depression has dramatically ramped down to my normal, annoying level of depression. I now only experience the depression that I’ve been dealing with for a while now. Watching the evening news doesn’t make me cry.
Depression is part of the normal human experience. If your cat dies or your wife leaves you for someone else, the normal, natural response is to get depressed. I get depressed for no reason. When I get depressed, there is no outside stimulus responsible for it. I just feel severely depressed.
I was on the steroids to treat the inflammation of my intestines. Hopefully, the steroids did what they were supposed to do, because I don’t want to go back on them.
Again, being on steroids gave me a whole new appreciation for Baltimore Orioles great Cal Ripken Jr. I don’t know how he could use steroids for his entire career. The fact that he did and didn’t allow the side effects of steroids to drag him down is a testament to what a great athlete he was.
I’m experiencing shooting pains in my lower abdomen after eating. They can get quite severe. I have pain pills when they get really bad. I’m supposed to avoid anything high in fiber. I can’t eat salad or whole wheat bread. The only fruit I can eat is canned fruit. I think the pain is made worse because it’s related to what put me in the hospital. If I was experiencing the same level of pain in my leg or my shoulder, it wouldn’t bother me nearly as much. The fact that the pain is located in my abdomen bothers me on a psychological level.
It turns out the fatigue I was experiencing is because I have anemia. This is normal for intestinal problems because you can’t absorb certain nutrients. I’m taking iron supplements and giving myself vitamin B-12 shots. I haven’t really noticed a difference. I still get tired quite easily.
I took two naps yesterday. I feel like I’m turning into our cat.
Tomorrow I have an appointment at the imaging center for a CT scan of my intestinal area. I have to drink some type of special liquid and then they will do what they are going to do. The CT is needed to make sure it’s safe to do the colonoscopy. I will not know what’s really going on until the colonoscopy. I just want to know definitively what’s going on with my guts. If it’s Crohn’s disease, then I can start treatment for that. If it’s something else then I can start treatment for that. What I find aggravating is my gastrologist will not schedule the colonoscopy until he sees the results of the CT scan. I just want to get this done.
Not knowing is the worst part.
The good news is that for the first time, my diabetes is totally under control. Spend eight days in intensive care and it tends to make you take your health issues a lot more seriously. I’m testing my blood constantly throughout the day and I’m recording everything in a log book. I’m not eating anything a diabetic should not eat. My doctor took me off all my medications for diabetes except Humalog, a fast-acting insulin. I’m now also taking Xultophy, a once-a-day injectible pen. That’s it.
Once I get the anemia under control, I want to get back to going to the gym. I have a Planet Fitness membership just collecting dust. With daily exercise, my diabetes should be even easier to keep under control.