Everyday, I feel a bit older. Everyday, you are a bit older. I mean that I physical feel it. I am 32, and I often feel like I am on the fast track to a nursing home. Today, I had an appointment with a cardiologist. Apparently, individuals with Ehlers-Danlos syndrome are at risk for heart problems. I had this appointment today, and from this appointment, I have to make 3 more. I heard they sell them in bulk as Sam’s Club. One for a CT scan of my aorta to make sure it is not super sized; one for an echo-cardiogram to make sure my heart is pumping like it should; and one for a sleep study because I may have sleep apnea. He may not have sleep apnea, but he definitely has some sort of sleep disorder. I miss the days when I went to the doctor, he told me everything was fine, and there were no follow up appointments. It’s like taking your Frizbian to the mechanic. “While we were replacing your wiper blades, we realized that we had to rebuild the transmission.” Now days, when I go to a doctor, I leave with at least 1 more appointment to schedule. Thankfully, despite memory problems being one of the symptoms of ADHD, I do not get distracted SQUIRREL! I am surprised her remembered the movie reference.
So, about red herrings. They don’t exist? The history behind the red herring, like most of history, is a little muddled. If only historians would have had a blog like this to right down the origins of popular phrases. Some believe that the strong smell of the red herring was used to teach dogs how to following a specific scent. The red herring was used as a distraction to throw them off course or teach them to focus. Or to teach them that fish is yummy.
In my case, diabetes is the red herring. When I first moved to Virginia my A1C was over 8. It was over 9, but who’s counting? I was having a number of symptoms that appeared, to me anyway, to be unrelated. I was sent to different specialists for each symptom, and each specialist told me that once I my blood sugar was under control, the symptoms would go away. This was after the through examination which consisted of, “So, you have diabetes?” This year, I started pumping. Should I cue the choir of angels? One of the requirements of my diabetes educator was that I have a good record of blood glucose, insulin, and carbohydrate numbers before I started using the pump. Doing this actually brought my A1C down dramatically. Paying attention helps? No. Surely that is not true. I began to have much better control. Control which only improved after I started using the pump. The symptoms should start subsiding, right? Well, I assumed it would not be instant. I did not start out with a high A1C. Despite his early attempts of treating diabetes with cranberry juice. I spent a lot of time building up to that number. What I did not expect is for things to start getting worse. It seems that the more control I gained over my blood sugar, the more evident my symptoms became. It is now to the point that just standing for a long time or driving causes a great deal of pain in my back. I cannot stand for long periods of time because my legs feel weak, and I start stumbling like a drunk. A reaction he also has to a teaspoon of cough syrup.
I am not certain what the moral of this story is. Don’t eat red herring? I guess it could be, if your doctors seem to blame your diabetes for everything, you may want to get a second opinion. Since we moved recently, we have changed clinics and our new primary care physician is trying to pick up on the real scent (and he is also the one that referred to my diabetes as a red herring). Hopefully, in the next few months, I will actually know what is wrong and be able to at least treat it. You are all welcome to send me donations to find a cure for the common Frizbian.