The Path Of Addison's DiseaseI was 27 years old, it was August, 1978, and I had just gone through a complete body cramp that was so painful it cut off my breathing. I was so weak from not being able to eat and was looking out the window. "I'm going to die". It was a simple statement of fact. I was not scared, because I knew it was a reality and there was nothing I could do about it. Then I thought about my three small children-ages 5, 4, and 2. "I don't want to leave them, please Lord, let me live. I don't want another woman raising my children."
From that, I became more sick. My normal weight was 128 pounds. My weight plummented like I was on slide. I joked with a friend that "now I weigh 106." It was spring of 1979. I had an appointment with my ob/gyn. I mentioned that I couldn't keep food down, had whole body cramping (even throat, stomach, back, tongue, arms, legs, fingers and toes.) Everyone thought I had been laying out in the sun because I was so bronzed. I had not been in the sun.
My ob/gyn decided to do some tests. (That was on a Friday). He called me later to say he had made an appointment with an internal medicine specialist for Monday afternoon. All my tests were abnormal.
I visited the internal medicine specialist. He proclaimed that I was hypoglycemic, and said I should eat 6 meals per day. He forgot I couldn't eat anything without throwing it back up.
Two weeks later I decided to stay with my mom and dad and take my 2 year old with me. The other two stayed with their other grandparents and went to school.
That night, Mom decided to give me Pepto Bismol. I heaved all night long trying to vomit it, but there was nothing on my stomach. The next morning, mom called my dad home from work and they carried me to the ER. My blood pressure was so low they could not find it (it took them three days to find it, and then it was 60/40 and barely audible-and that was with me standing! I was too weak to stand and the nurses had to hold me up. They guessed my weight at 90 pounds. I had no sodium at all in my body, blood sugar was extremely low, I was severely dehydrated and severely malnutritioned. No test was normal. It took a week of testing which included a 24 hour urine and ACTH test to clarify that I was in severe Addison's Disease. They said I was hours away from going into a coma that I would not have awakened from.
That was 33 years ago. I have had many Addisonian Crises, have come so close to death it was just not my time to go. The doctors say I have auto-immune disease. This has led to me having hypothyroidism, and now diabetes. I also have arthritis all over my body, fibromyalgia, asthma, pulmonary arterial hypertension, and am awaiting another diagnoses because my white count and red blood cell count is too high. Yet, I go as if nothing is wrong with me, trying to hide all my symptoms. I have a handicapped tag, and people look at me as if I have nothing wrong--like both legs amputated. I am on oxygen and have to watch my activity level, because I get so out of breath and my lungs really hurt.
We are here until God gets through with us--until we do everything He planned for our lives. Not until then will we go to be with Him in Eternity.