Thursday, January 28, 2016

Fighting Grave's Bravely

It's been a long ride this past year.  I have not been feeling well for the last few YEARS and visited  many doctors. The worst part of this diagnosis besides extreme fatigue, was the not knowing factor ...
My eyes had been giving me problems and I went to opthomologists in Georgia than Virginia. I can't begin to tell you the frustration I felt.  My primary care doctor would come in and I would lie on the bed waiting for her, that's how tired I was . I have fibromyalgia and of course breast cancer twice and knew every time I was ill .  The hard part was convincing my doctors that I needed answers . The bizarre fact was one blood test that showed my thyroid levels were changing rapidly .  I was bouncing from hypothyroidism to hyperthyroidism. I was told that I had Graves' disease by my Opthomologist ! I went to endocrinologist and a barrage of blood work ensued . My endocrinologist said DO NOT go to my month long journey through Italy . I went . I did not regret it but I did end up in a Rome hospital for two days . I was not going home . I had many symptoms including extreme fatigue but I was determined . I started in Venice to meet one of my cousins and my father's brother in Verona. Elena was wonderful. We than visited Florence and ended in Ladispoli., where many of my first cousins lived .It is a coastal city, not far from Rome. I began to piece together my medical history as well as our family tree. We had a count that protected the Pope.  I was royalty !  .  I found  that I was the eldest of 21 first cousins . Finally,  I was meeting my fathers family . I kept pushing myself  keeping me from going into a thyroid storm was a drug PTU. I knew that I wanted to go to Sardegna and I took a flight there to meet many cousins and two Aunts . I can honestly say that everyday was so special . I had a family ! They were worth my symptoms and I am going to go back soon.  I was not forgotten.
When I returned,  the immediate removal of my thyroid was scheduled . My doctor called a surgeon and told her I needed this surgery ASAP. The surgery went well in July and I began my medrol infusions because all the flipping hypo, hyper had take a toll on my eyes. .  I found out I also has Thyroid Eye Disease. (TED). Finally I was getting answers and HELP ! When I was in surgery my friend called my daughter and left a message regarding my disease and surgery. It does have a hereditary gene. 
I have not heard one word from my family . I knew that she didn't care .  My own daughter, sister and son have not called me . I was not surprised . 
Now I am truly relieved .  I am being closely watched by my ocular surgeon and endocrinologist.  

 Part of my month long excursion was my family's  medical history . I stayed with my Aunt for last week of my trip and was in shock that she had been through breast cancer and also had her thyroid removed .  I was truly my father's daughter . Again the synopsis of this entry is to follow your instincts. I knew there was something that the doctors were missing and a simple thyroid test brought me to answer "what was going on in my body! " I am still having small changes in my medications due to the different T levels . I will be having decompression eye surgeries soon .  I'm on medication for the rest of my life . I will be returning to Italy healthier . I am grateful that I have the stubborn gene like my father .  I never gave up trying to get answers .  I had many setbacks even in Italy, but I was determined to meet everyone.  I have a loving caring family in Italy .  I am not an orphan . My father's family gave me so many loving gestures and their patience was remarkable. I was born when my father was still an Italian citizen . I am allowed dual citizenship. I believe once again that everything happens for a reason . Please remember that your body speaks to you .  I had  never heard of the disease. Graves disease affects every part of your body. So when the thyroid is gone your whole body is affected . I just hope my children, Jason and Cara Scarano Podenski realize that they are only hurting themselves by ostracizing me. I will not give up my dream to meet my grandson . They might think it's best to forget me.   It's sad that they feel such ugliness towards their mother . 
Karma is all I say. I don't wish any ill towards them but it's a fact that how you treat others bounces back . I'm still a mother first.  I always put them first and I was last.For example, I slept on a used mattress and had a full school schedule in NY . They had bedrooms and beds..Their own rooms always. I knew that I had to insure their safety and their health. 

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