I had an appointment with a brand new doctor today, a gastroenterologist. I am going to go out on a limb here and say that no hilarious story ever starts with the word “gastroenterologist” in the first sentence.
I took some awesome pictures while I was waiting in the exam room, though. Maybe when this is all said and done, I’ll do a one woman photography show entitled, Pictures I took in Exam Rooms While Waiting to See Doctors. You will, of course, want the oversized, four-color coffee table book that goes with it.
So, it turns out that it took a long time to diagnose my diseases because my symptoms came all backwards and out of order. I can officially tell you that I have Crohn’s Disease, with a possible side of Sarcoidosis*. On Friday, I’m having a colonoscopy and an endoscopy to check for granuloma.
I have spent a lot of time trying to figure out how I am feeling about all of this and I can honestly say that I am simultaneously relieved, embarrassed, pissed off and excited.
I’m relieved that specialists in their field’s have found incontrovertible medical evidence that there is something physically wrong with me. One of my biggest fears was that I would end up with no diagnosis or end up in one of the catch-all categories that sick people are put into when no diagnosis can be found. I think that would be terribly frustrating, and that I would worry that people didn’t really believe anything was wrong with me.
I’m embarrassed that at least one of the things wrong with me has to do with digestion. I’m a bit of a prude when it comes to bodily functions. I generally don’t find fart jokes funny. Crohn’s Disease is pretty icky. I figure posting photos of a digestive tract here is step one towards getting over this.
The anger isn’t anything specific or intense, just a general feeling that I have Things to Do and this isn’t something I have time for. “Why me?!?”, etc.
Mostly though, I am excited that I am starting treatment on Monday to get all of this nonsense under control. I’m going to be taking injectable drugs called Tumor Necrosis Factor Blockers along with some drugs that make them work better. Hopefully I’ll be in remission quickly and then it’s a question of staying there. That’s all really good stuff.
I have received so many lovely, supportive emails from blog readers who are worried about me and my weirdo health, so I wanted to post an update here letting you know that I am okay. I’m on the road to Wellville. This feels very much like the beginning of something good.
* My gastroenterologist asked me if I’d ever heard of Sarcoidoisis and I was like, “Um…yeah. About once a week on House. It’s always the first thing they rule out in the dying guy.”