Friday, March 03, 2006

The Doc is In

I've decided that I like the TV show House. I started watching it when USA started showing it on Friday nights. I don't watch it religiously because, like most people my age, I usually go out on Fridays. I rather like the series though - it entertains me. Did you know that Dr House is played by the guy who was Percy in the Black Adder series. I think that's funny, but it's a total side note. I watched House tonight and was kinda excited when one of the requisite (at least) 3 diagnoses was Wegener's Granulomatosis (AKA WG).

I was diagnosed with WG (as most anyone reading this already knows, maybe) my Sr year of high school. Wegener's is one of those auto-imune gems that no one has ever heard of. For a super cool text book explaination of what it's all about This site or This one are pretty decent.

As of right now, my Wegener's has been in full remission (read: I've been completely off medication) for around two years. Go me! Yes that is something major to celebrate! I'm very freakin' proud of myself there, and from this distance I can look back and see the whole thing a little more calmly than ever before.

It took a long-ass time to get over this thing. I gave up a lot, but I honestly gained a lot too. It's amazing how much you can learn when you face your own mortality at 17. I had to postpone college to finish treatment. That was probably one of the most traumatic things for me, and I fought my doctor on the issue for a long time. But it was pretty apparent that I wasn't well enough to go and it's hard to switch hospitals/states in the middle of chemo-therapy. That's right, I went through chemo. And I was on Prednisone- the worst drug EVER!! It made me gain 50 lbs in 2 months. I hated that. I hated running my hand through my hair and coming away with a handful of it. I hated being stuck at home. I hated not having the energy to do everything I was used to doing. I hated the whole two years I was undergoing treatment. Two years is a LONG time to be sick.

About a year and a half ago I had a little bit of a breakdown. I left Fort Lewis College about a month into the semester and came home because I thought I might, maybe be having a relapse and it freaked me out. Turns out it was just a cold. I went to a shrink when I came back (this was a really serious breakdown) and worked though a lot of mental issues I had involving WG. There was a lot of anxiety about a relapse and also a little Post Traumatic Stress. The chances of a relapse are pretty high. Especiall since I was diagnosed so young, I have a lot of life during which it could happen. Hopefully I've worked through my issues enough that I can deal with it if/when it happens. Hopefully I'll never have to. That's a pretty big hope.

1 comment:

Shan said...

It is a big hope, but I'll throw my weight into it too. And congratulations on the (approximate, anyway) two-year mark!

I don't think most people realise how tough you are, but really, it's all there. Keep it going, babe.