The past few weeks have been stressful. Even though I have hit my sales quota, work is still beyond crazy right now. I know I should be able to relax a little more, but demanding customers and lots of deadlines aren't really helping that situation. Also, family issues have continued, causing a level of stress and anxiety I don't think I've ever felt before.
Every day these past few weeks I could feel my body tensing up, and each day I began to feel more and more tired. Like, too exhausted to get out of bed, focus at work, and then be able to carry on a conversation by the time I got home, tired. I started noticing a recurring rash on my right elbow, and then my hair started falling out. I noticed a slight bald patch behind my left ear and had a major freakout, and then called my rheumatologist.
I was convinced that another lupus episode was fast approaching, and hoped that it wasn't too late to find a way to stop it. It's been almost 3 years since my last major relapse, and the thought of having to go back on medication was almost more than I could handle.
Fast forward to the good news. I got my blood work done, and went to visit the doc. Surprise of all surprises....my numbers are the best they have ever been since I was diagnosed almost 12 years ago. That stinky little double-stranded DNA issue is still there (it always will be- that's the way Lupus works), but my kidneys, liver and all other levels of anything you could possibly test are nearly perfect.
So the doctor basically tells me to chill out. Take a deep breath, wash away the worry, and carry on. He said that obviously there were many good things in my life. Things that were contributing to my overall health in a positive way, and those are the things I need to focus on. He asked what had changed over the past year- the two main things I mentioned were diet (eating about 90% vegetarian), and my living situation recently. He definitely thinks that the diet has contributed to my health. Since I eat mostly fresh, whole foods- I have eliminated a lot of harmful chemicals and preservatives. And having a support person right there in the same very house? Not such a bad idea. If it makes me happy, then go with it.
So I went to work that next day, and literally took deep breaths almost every 5 minutes. I had to keep reminding myself that I can't get worked up and stressed out over things that I cannot control. I've made baby steps, and am starting to feel better. Elbow rash? Gone. Energy level? Getting closer to normal. Bald spot? Still there, but I don't feel like half my hair is falling out every time I move.
An apple a day and a focus on the positive were the doctor's orders, and I'm doing my best to follow them. That's one prescription that for once I won't argue with!