Tuesday, June 18, 2013

My journey with anemia

Back in February, I started to have trouble with my heart.  Pressure and pain, feeling like my heart was struggling to work.  I was always very emotional, though I'm not sure if it was because of the pain or along with it.

Obviously I have been going through a lot of stress, so I chalked it up to that, self-diagnosed myself with depression, prayed it through and kept going.  I never mentioned it to my husband.  But the trouble with my heart did not go away.  I remembered that I had experienced similar symptoms during my teen years, but they had never found anything wrong.  This time I was worried something really was wrong.

Finally, one Monday I was in a lot of pain and pressure, shortness of breath.  I wondered if I was having a heart attack, should I go to the hospital?  I didn't think it was a heart attack, but I was very worried and very emotional.  I texted my husband to tell him, and he was not happy that I had been keeping this from him.  He told me to call the doctor immediately.

So I went to the doctor and had a bunch of tests done.  Turned out that I was severely anemic.  I have been anemic all my life, kinda par of the course, and just figured it meant I was a little more tired.  But I had never been this anemic.  My body was literally starving for blood, which was causing my heart to work overtime, which was causing the pain and pressure I was feeling.

My doctor put me on a high dose of iron, and I've been taking that for the past three months.  I can feel a difference.

About three weeks ago I decided that I was tired of the weight that I was carrying, so I started to eat right, which for me means not eating a dozen cookies every day!  I also wanted to exercise, as I can tell that my body is inching closer to forty.  ( I can't believe I just typed that!)  So I ordered an exercise Wii game that I like and got started.

I noticed after a few workouts that I was incredibly tired after the workout.  Wait a minute, I thought exercise was supposed to energize you, not make you want to take a three hour nap.  Then, after my fourth workout, I started feeling that heart stuff again.

So, I checked with Dr Google, and found out that anemics have to be very careful with exercise, usually limiting themselves to walking or other forms of low-impact exercise.  Aerobics is not recommended.

I'm so disappointed because I have no desire to walk in the hot heat and I really like this exercise Wii game.  And I want to lose weight and gain some strength.

But I have to get my anemia under control first, I guess.

As Jim said "Oh well, at least I have a good excuse!"

1 comment:

  1. Oh my goodness!!! I am not alone!!! I have had so many issues with my anemia! I have literally been on the floor in chest pain before. The first time it happened a few years ago I thought for sure I was having a heart attack. My husband carried me to bed and told me not to move, he was calling 911. But, alas, I only found that it is because I was not taking in enough iron and so my blood count was low again. I have learned that it is very difficult to deal with (especially when you get busy and don't think about it) and every-time I feel a dizzy spell, I know that I have not been "taking care of" myself, LOL.