Your attitude can change your perspective note that I didn’t say it will necessarily change your circumstances but it can help you cope when life throws a curve ball.
For about three years I have lived with constant nausea (not vomiting) without knowing why. No I am not pregnant despite a few doctors asking me even after I had told them how long I had been feeling sick for (it would be the longest pregnancy ever!). I tried many remedies to stop feeling sick from heartburn medication to nausea tablets (which did nothing) to having a concoction of naturopath supplements (which made my feet and hands radiate heat, needless to say I freaked out and stopped taking them). I tried a sulphite elimination diet which had me eating pretty basic for over three months. After several weeks I built a repertoire of:
Breakfast: banana smoothie (banana, almond milk, honey) poured over oats
Lunch: Wholemeal pasta with vegetables (carrot, peas, corn), plain chicken, homemade chicken stock and avocado
Dinner: plain chicken (without seasoning) with vegetables (carrots, peas, corn, sweet potato)
It seemed to be working. I was feeling better and I was so relieved. As I slowly added more complex foods back into my diet the feelings of wellness drifted away much the same way it did when I went on a blood group diet. Going from hopeful to disappointment.
I put off going to see a gastrologist for so long but for two main reasons; a) I am hesitant to have any medical procedures due to my colourful medical past (Beautiful Scars) and the biggest reason I was worried was; I would go and explain the situation only to be told there was nothing wrong with me, leaving me feeling awkward and stupid.
As the saying goes desperate times call for desperate measures. Yep it wasn’t common sense that compelled me to get a referral and book an appointment but rather frustration. Aside from the constant nausea that would spike at times, I also experienced other symptoms including: bloating, headaches, itchy mouth, needing to pee a lot, stomach cramps and emotional mood swings.
So I finally went to the gastrologist out of desperation; praying a simple prayer “Lord Jesus I just want answers.” Well Jesus answered a yes to my prayer but the answer to what I was struggling with left me reeling. Non –ulcer (functional) Dyspepsia in lay man’s terms an oversensitive stomach. As the gastrologist explained I sat there stunned each point made as jarring as the last. No cure. Forever will feel sick. Not a result of allergies or hormones. No way to ease symptoms (as nausea tablets did nothing for me). Stomach will enjoy certain foods for a time but then not like them. If you find anything that really works for you let me know.
Devastated is the only word I can think of to describe that moment. I didn’t even make it to the car before tears gathered in my eyes and spilt down my cheeks. With all my being I wanted to fix it, not add to my list of non – curable hardships first Cerebral Palsy then Chronic Fatigue now Non –ulcer (functional) Dyspepsia. I wanted my Daddy who was in a different state due to harvest season to be with my Mum and me. He is the steady one when life falls apart. Yet all I could do was talk to him on the phone crying before and after. All I could think of was all the social situations that I would be forever sick at: catch up with friends. Sick. Christmas. Sick. Weddings. Sick. Birthdays. Sick. The list goes on, I was even making my Mum depressed at the list.
Psalm 16:9 “Therefore my heart is glad and my tongue rejoices; my body will also rest secure.”
It was in the hopelessness of the situation I decided to look at the positives and regain my hope and to hold onto it with all my might. This is a few that came to mind:
I had gotten answers it was no longer a mystery
I didn’t need to cut out any foods or go on any restrictive diets
I wasn’t damaging my body the way I was eating
When I have children, they will get all the essential nutrients they need
My Mum and a friend added a few more to the list
I am still lovable
Going to the doctor sooner wouldn’t have changed the outcome
I have been living my life with the condition 3+ years already
You had horrible periods (think post – baby type of level so I have been told) as a teenager yet your body has changed and you no longer struggle with this. There is a possibility your tummy could one day not feel sick anymore.
These points helped restore my hope but I struggled with the deep sadness that seemed to echo ‘this is your life now’. I wanted to be happy but I couldn’t shake my negative feelings. When I asked for advice my Mum said I had to make the choice every day to be happy despite my circumstances. So every day I pray a simple prayer “Lord Jesus I need your help to be happy. Help me to be happy despite my circumstances.” It has really helped my happiness level and focusing of the positives helps keep me hopeful and optimistic.