Knowledge

If you are sick and this sickness is not going away, then you should become as educated about it, as possible.  I am not saying, "Do not go to the Doctor", it is important to have a health care team that knows your virus, knows you and is current, caring and takes time to listen.  I am lucky, I finally, after a search, found such a team.



The Beginning


I am always told, "Start at the beginning," but I rarely do.  My thoughts jump around in my mind, faster than I can sort them out, sometimes. There are the times where it all goes dark, nothing is coming across.  It has always been like that but before I became sick, I could sort faster, now, I lose thoughts, things that have happened disappear and I can't find them.  I found out this is due to the effects of the virus, Hepatitis C.

In 1982, I was told that I had non-A, non-B hepatitis and that was about all that was said, besides the do not donate blood, probably got it from a blood transfusion in the early 70's, we do not know what it will do, and so on. So, I forgot about it, I was hardly ever sick, full of good health and life, why worry about something no one knows about.

Then, in 2005, things starting changing.  Nothing major, nothing to worry about, more like maybe I am becoming a hypo, I just did not feel right.  Just about everything that happened, could be explained with the natural aging process, so, once again, I did not worry about it.

 

In 2007, things really began to slide downhill, memory losses, confusion, weird mental thoughts, and a run down tired feeling that was painful.  Most of it I could explain away, aging, working many hours, high stressed job, living somewhere I hated, being at a job where my employer and his staff made fun of me (put downs) and did not like me, but, the mental issues where scaring me.  I thought that I was losing my mind. 

2008 brought more issues, harder to find reasons for, everything I ate and drank, burned, I had diarrhea, and the tiredness was so much worse.  It wore me out just to chew my food, to breathe.  I became depressed and tried to hide it all behind joking and making fun of myself.  I would break out in tears for no reason, I went to the job, got off work, climbed into the car, broke out into tears, and went home.  I was scared, very scared now.

In November 2008, I had a TIA, diagnosed high blood pressure and COPD and was stressed out from long work hours, the situation at my work, home and life.  My doctor put band-aids on what he could and we went on.  By December of the same year, I had pains in my right side which I thought was trapped gas, but I was running a fever and really sick, so went to my doctor, She ran blood tests, and scheduled a CAT scan and MRI, both within the week.  My gall bladder was finished but had a stone stuck in it, surgery was scheduled, an out patient trip, supposed to last an hour, with me out in two to three hours.

When they put me out, I went out, a major artery that is supposed to be under the liver was on top, there were bleeding issues, and my liver was ugly. She did a biopsy, and I had non alcohol cirrhosis of the liver.  The surgery lasted for 4 hours, I did not want to wake up, so I was in the clinic till late that night.

With in 2 weeks, blood test results came back and I was told I have hepatitis C.  Another doctor, found out I was in stage 4, we discussed treatment and I decided to go for it, even though I knew I probably would not be able to complete it.  The thought was that even though I was non- responsive to treatment, going through some of it could keep me from developing liver cancer.  I made it to the 14th week and about died.

Since that time, I spent a lot of time reading everything I could, going to support groups, talking to professionals and people infected.  I wanted to learn all I could.  I know that this is it for me, no new liver, no magic cure, I am not going to get better, that day by day, my liver is failing and as it goes, other things that the liver was doing, are no longing happening.  Our livers are responsible for over 101 different functions, the largest organ in the body and a hard worker.  It is also the only organ that will try and heal itself, so as you can see, the HVC virus is very smart.  It can “hide” inside your body for 20-30years or more before symptoms begin to show.
This blog is my story.  It is about the things I learned, the junk that people told me that aren't true or even safe, some of it anyway, and how I am managing all the rest of my life.  I want to share the honest truth with my readers, no magic ending, no sugar-coated crap.

But, in my day to day life, I have found peace and joy and laughter, that I want to share that with you, too.  I hope that when you read this, that you can see yourself in some of it, and that you can find a peace within and move forward.  We should not have to travel this journey alone, so to those who are clear now, who are starting treatment, or who, like me, are in the end stages, I offer my hand and my heart.  I will put on your shoes, you wear mine and we can do whatever is possible to bring about an end to this virus.

And so, my journey begins........