On June 27th, 2015 I was at Entrepeneur of the Year and started feeling a bit unwell. I had cramping in my back and down my leg and frequent trips to go #1. I thought maybe it was a UTI so, I went to the doctor the next day. The results were negative. I continued to have the same pain, so I went to my OB on that next Monday. Come to find out I had a large cyst on my ovary that had luckily just collapsed. The pain started subsiding that next week…then the headaches started. I started getting crazy headaches that made my head feel like it was going to explode. I had pressure everywhere in my head. It would start near the base of my skull and then radiate into my ears. Often times I would feel a slight vibration in my skull. My ears became plugged especially my right and I just felt so much pressure constantly. I became dizzy and my eyes couldn’t focus. I was also extremely sensitive to light. I had to wear sunglasses all day, indoors and out. I couldn’t stand it all, so I went to my Primary Care Physician. They looked at me, said that nothing looked wrong and that it was allergies. They told me to start on Nasacort and a daily allergy pill…so, I did. Within a week, nothing had gotten better, and I developed sores all down my throat and had a cough. I thought it was from the Nasacort, so I went to a doctor, he told me to get off of it and put me on a zpack. The sores started to go away as soon as I got off the Nasacort and the cough began to get better. Still the pressure and pain continued.
I began to feel exhausted. I couldn’t function or get through the day without taking a long 2 hour nap daily, even then I would still wake up exhausted. I had a friend tell me about a “Voo doo” Doctor (muscle testing doctor) who worked wonders on her. She told me to try it out. He was a good distance away from us, but I figured I’d try it anyway. I met with him and he did all sorts of muscle testing on me ( look it up if your curious). He came to the conclusion with all that testing, that I had an improper functioning Uterus, Heart and thyroid. He said this was all due to isopropyl alcohol overload in my system… what the? So, I had to go on a million vitamins and get rid of anything alcohol related in my home. Makeup, all hair products, conditioner, soap, hand sanitizer, LOTION, SUNSCREEN, cleaners etc. I’m talking pretty much everything. I was able to replace a lot of it with natural products luckily. But it took some time. He also said that I had an inner ear infection, and gave me an oil for that. While in this process, my skin started to feel sunburnt, I started getting pins and needles down my arms etc. I was a mess. I went back to him and he told me that my body detoxed too quickly and that he needed to slow down my thyroid…more vitamins later, I felt worse. So, I had to move to another plan.
I had been in this process for 3 months now. It was now Septemeber. I decided since I have had neck and back problems for years, I would start looking into that. I started to look up my symptoms and see if there was any relation to that. I found something that had to do with the top bone in your cervical spine called the atlas. If that bone is out of place, then all of my symptoms could occur. There is a chiropractor in my area, that works specifically with the atlas, so I made an apt. with him. He took some x-rays and came to the conclusion that my atlas was tilted and moved forward. So I started treatment. I would go get the atlas adjusted twice a week.
I’ve been to many chiropractors in my life. Typically at those visits they pop your bones and adjust you just right. This guy pulled out what looked like a metal gun, measured my feet to see if they were even, laid me down on an uncomfortable table and put the “gun” to my head. As you can imagine, this was quite frightening for my kids to watch (they were the ones who took the pics). The gun literally makes a little click and you barely feel a thing. He then sits you up and feels your neck to see if it loosened. Low and behold, it did. I felt all this pressure go away. It was crazy.
I wish I could say that was the end of it and I was healed, but, NOPE. I felt good for about an hour. But then things returned. The dizziness never went away, just the pressure. My neck felt like I couldn’t hold it up. It was so weak. I continued the visits however, and they were helpful.
My neck was getting some relief, but everything else was still there. The Chiropractor told me that he believed I needed to get an MRI to rule out any possible serious things. So, I turned to a neurologist next.
The neurologist was my most unpleasant visit I have had with a doctor yet. I had been in and out of doctors offices multiple times a week and it was really getting old. I was starting to get fearful of what I might find going on in my body. I not only come from a family that has anxiety in the blood, but I also come from a family that is loaded with cancer. My little brother has had it twice and my mom once. Not to mention the numerous aunts and uncles on both sides that have had it. I was fearful of what was to come.
I went to a neurologist in my area. I was waiting in the room and the doctor came in with a scribe who writes everything down for him. I happened to have the boys with me and he rolled his eyes as soon as he saw them. Then he started to ask me questions. He was extremely rude in the way he talked to me and made me feel like an idiot. Then he sits me up on a table and starts doing these “feel tests” where he has a tool and rolls it down your arms, legs, face, and feet on both sides of your body to see if you can feel it. He also does something with your toe. When he did the toe thing on me, he got a concerned look and said ” Well now I finally have something to be concerned about” He said that to his scribe by the way, not me. I looked at him and said, “what’s the problem?” he said you have right sided hemiparesis. I said “I’m sorry, but I don’t know all these medical terms, what does that mean?” He said in an annoyed voice “One side of your body works better than the other side” I said “ok, what could that mean?” he said annoyed again and very fast, “Well, it means something is wrong with your brain! Right sided hemiparesis has been seen in migraines before, but it could also mean brain tumor, stroke, Multiple Sclerosis or brain damage of some sort, now I have a reason to give you an MRI set up the MRI and then come back in two weeks after you get it”. I left that visit feeling extremely anxious and uncomfortable. I got home, got my kids busy and went in my room and cried. Later that day I went out to check the mail and my neighbor was outside with her friend. I started telling them about my experience. My neighbor’s friend said WAIT was the doctor you went to named Dr. Barry??? I said YES! she said “I HATE that man! He is a woman hater. There is no person in my life that has made me feel more like an idiot” I was at least happy to know it wasn’t just me. It was HIM.
I couldn’t help but look at my family in fear. What if they lost me? Would they be ok? The fear started to consume me. I didn’t want to get an MRI. I am terribly claustrophobic and I didn’t want to know if something was in there. I felt like finding out would be a worse scenario than never knowing and just dying eventually. I had many long conversations with my mom and Andy, prayed my little heart out and finally found peace. I felt like I needed to buck up and get it done.
I set up the MRI. It was set for October 1st, 2015. While in the process of waiting to get the MRI, I started getting worse. I was getting pins and needles that started in my scalp and went down my face into my arms and hands. I began to shake when I was in the process of falling asleep, my vision (unable to focus) was getting so bad, that I was afraid to drive. Andy and I started talking and decided it probable wasn’t safe for me to be alone and decided to ask my mom to come stay for a couple of weeks. My mom had offered her help in the past, so we called her and asked her to come. This was extremely difficult for me to do. I am a very independent person and hate asking for help, but I knew, I needed it. She of course was ready and willing.
Just a couple days before she came, I was getting ready for bed. Andy had not returned home from work yet and called to tell me he would be bringing a guy from work to stay the night. He was new to the company and was in Texas looking for a house for his family to move into. So I waited for them to get home. Got them situated and then we got into bed. As I laid down and started to fall asleep, suddenly my left arm started to go numb. I started to panic. I woke up Andy and told him what was going on. He asked me if we should go to the ER. I said, no, I’m sure it’ll go away. It kept going on and then I got scared. I feared I may be having some kind of stroke. So, we decided to go. It was convenient we had someone at the house and we felt that was a blessing.
We went to the ER and they did a CT scan which unfortunately was all they had at the hospital. The doctor there, said the scan was clear, ( which basically ruled out a tumor) but, he felt like I was having symptoms of Multiple Sclerosis (MS) and that I needed an MRI to look for that. Luckily at this point, the numbness was starting to wear off. He then sent us home with orders to get an MRI which we were already set up for.
We went home. I was glad I wasn’t having a stroke, and hopeful the clear CT scan really meant no tumor but I was still worried about what may be wrong. The next day I went outside to find this out on my lawn. My sweet friends family did this for their family night. Our boys were thrilled about it and of course it made me feel hopeful and grateful that people were thinking and praying for me. I needed that!
A couple days later, my sweet mom came to town! And I felt relieved! I had been feeling so alone and so scared. My mom has been through more than anybody I know. She has so much knowledge on anxiety, back and neck problems, cancer, but most of all, she has an amazing testimony of our Heavenly Father and his guidance in our lives. She was there to talk and comfort me and make me feel uplifted. Sometimes you just need your mom and I really needed her at that point. I was so grateful to her!
The next day I had to face the dreaded MRI. I am really claustrophobic and this MRI machine was particularly tight because they needed a close look at my brain. When I saw the machine I started to panic. My doctor had told me that he would prescribe me medicine to help me to handle the MRI (to relax me). I asked the tech about the medicine and he said my doc never prescribed it. OF COURSE! That doc was the WORST! So, I decided I would brave it.
As he got me ready, he told me that they would need to put things over my eyes and then I would lay in what looked to me like a cage that clipped over my head. These pics from the web give you an idea.
He laid me down, clipped the cage over my head, told me I couldn’t move for the next 20 minutes and then I panicked! My heart started racing and I told him I couldn’t do it and to please let me out of the cage. He opened it and nicely and calmly talked me through. He told me to think of my favorite songs and sing them in my head and that he would talk to me throughout the whole process. I took a DEEP breath, said a prayer in my head, pleading with the Lord to get me through this and I laid down. He covered my eyes, placed the cage over my head and rolled me in. I’ve never tried so hard to stay calm. I sang primary songs in my head over and over and finally my heart slowed down and I could relax. By the end, he told me I did so well that he was able to get extra images. I credited my Heavenly Father for that. I left and was glad it was over. Now we just had to wait for a week to get my results!