Yeah yeah yeah, I know I've been gone for over four months, and my Inner Egotist has been yelling at me regularly that my loyal readers (the few I may still have) have probably been missing me and wondering what may have happened. I have also taken several months off Twitter (as you may or may not have noticed), and when my brother recently asked me why, I replied simply, "Sanity". I realised that I was taking inordinate amounts of time writing, and that isn't fair to my family, and it isn't right. They deserve better.
Writing this blog isn't difficult, but it can be time consuming. Coming up with a patient to write about is easy, but making a blog post out of it can be cumbersome, because I don't want my stories to be trite, boring, or repetitive. So instead of putting out boring short stories, I consider it better to put out nothing and keep people wondering.
Well wonder no further, because the patient I'm writing about today was easy to come up with.
It is I.
No, I wasn't in a car accident, and I wasn't stabbed or assaulted, and no I didn't cut off my finger with my table saw or have any other kind of traumatic injury. But over the past few months I have seen three different doctors, including a specialist, a sub-specialist, and a sub-sub-specialist, and I now have an official diagnosis.
In the interest of my own privacy, I will not be revealing what the diagnosis is or the type of doctor that I've been visiting. I will, however, divulge that just this past week I was diagnosed with a very rare degenerative disease that is incurable, progressive, and potentially disabling, though it is not in any way deadly. It's not multiple sclerosis, and it's not ALS or any other motor neurone disease.
I'm not dying.
The good news is that this condition was diagnosed very early, and it was only found based on a hunch that the second doctor had. He very easily could have chalked up my symptoms to aging and let it go, but he decided to investigate further. Usually this disease isn't diagnosed until much later in life once significant and irreversible damage has already been done, but mine was found before any of that happened, so my long term prognosis seems to be good.
The bad new is that no one knows the cause of this disease because it is so rare. It was only first described about 30 years ago, but no one took it seriously until about 15 years ago when it was discovered that it was indeed progressive. Because of that, there is no textbook treatment. The disease is thought to be autoimmune, so I will be taking immunosuppression medication for the rest of my life to keep it at bay. Hopefully.
I'm not looking for sympathy. I'm not interested in anyone's thoughts or prayers. Yes this sucks, but I have accepted the diagnosis and am hitting it with everything I can. Ignoring a problem like this won't make it better, and pretending it doesn't exist will only make it worse.
If you're looking for a silver lining like I was, consider this: if you thought I railed against antivaxxers before, just imagine how I'll treat them now that I am one of those immunosuppressed patients they put at risk with their bullshit.
You're on notice, antivaxxers.