Feeling down due to fatigue & undiagnosed health issues
I haven't been using the forums much apart from a couple of responses to others posts. I stopped as I was too busy & trying to keep up with the forums was becoming too stressful. In September My husband went to Europe which was great although tiring due to the pace of the tour we did. Unfortunately a few days before returning home I fell heavily on concrete steps hurting my right side. I continued on relying on icepacks to manage the pain. I couldn't sleep because of the pain when lying down. The last day I came down with a bad cold which developed into a chest infection later on. The pain eased after 6 weeks & I recovered from the chest infection but have ongoing problems with fatigue & abdominal discomfort. My GP arranged pathology tests. The blood tests are normal but urine isn't. Today I was sent for a ultrasound of kidneys & bladder. Next week I have a gastroscopy & colonoscopy. My stress levels seem to be escalating out of proportion each time I see the GP & get sent for more tests. Prior to my accident my mental health issues were settling down but the last week it is much worse. I have lost my temper a few times in the last week without much provocation. This is not normal for me. I have been on a diet for several months but I am now finding it really hard to stick to it I just want to go & eat food I know will make me feel worse. The diet is a healthy one which I normally find easy to stick to because the food is satisfying.
I just want to get back on track & feel in control of my life & not feel so stressed & down. I also feel guilty for feeling this way because There is no confirmation of a serious illness.
Hi Elizabeth, glad to hear from you again,
These period whereby all sorts of things are happening come and go in our lives. I tend to expect them now and that makes it easier to accept...if you know what I mean.
I also say to myself "it could be worse" and imagine an extra few serious issues arising.
As for guilt I know that that is possible to overcome. Guilt is illogical and non productive. Continue to pigeonhole those thoughts in the box marked "silly thoughts".
I hope you get well soon and resume that great progress you have been having
Hi Elizabeth. In spite of your unfortunate mishap, I hope you enjoyed your European trip. Not a good end, however. With everything that's gone wrong since you returned, your mental health would be on a downward spiral. You've had so much to contend with, hubby's ill health, I seem to recall you had problems with son and DIL staying with you, now your own physical health is causing you concern. I would expect you to be a bit short tempered seeing as you have been under such a lot of strain. Is there anybody who can offer some support for you at this time? You have had to be the rock for everybody, you need to be cared for now. Diets are no fun when you're unwell, even though you would normally enjoy the food, you tend to want 'comfort' food, rather than 'sensible' food. I hope all is well when you get your results from the tests. Are you able to talk to your Dr about your stress levels. He needs to know where you are emotionally. Stress can elevate blood pressure, so if the Dr is aware of your stress, he can help you.
Elizabeth, have you considered seeing a dietitian to see if there are any ways where you can tweak your diet to make it easier on you? Dieting is great and eating healthily is massive for mental health but it takes time and effort to do so. A dietitian may have some tips where it makes it easier.
With the exercise, are you being to stressful on yourself? As in are you pushing harder than what you need to do? Exercise should be enjoyable. For example, I used to push myself pretty hard but now i just do my 5km every morning at a leisurely pace. I have nothing to prove to anyone and not impressing anyone. I have found that, that is ideal for me. Gives me my 25 mins of exercise i want per day. It might also be worthwhile to seek out some personal trainer, a good one, to refine your exercise to match what you want. I have a mate who is a PT and he sees so many people doing the incorrect types of exercises for what they are trying to achieve. Not saying that you are doing the incorrect types, but it would be good to know that you are doing it right.
Are you practicing mindfulness? If not, I would well recommend that you start doing it. There are some great apps out there for help you. I use "Smiling Mind" daily and after persisting with it, I am now a lot more calm than what i was.
I would think it is pretty normal to get anxious when more tests are ordered but at the same time, you need to keep that anxiety in control. I used to think that if i sneezed, I had cancer as I catastrophised that much. It was the mindfulness that keeps that in check. I still do it to a degree but I am now able to calm myself down.
Great work getting back on here and posting. Understanding why you went off and well done for recognising that.
Keep posting and see if can help guide you through this journey of yours.
Hi Mark Thanks for your reply. I don't think I need a dietician at the moment unless the test I'm having show up something suggesting I need a special diet. I am close to my goal weight. Ideally I'd like to lose more but at the moment it is more important to be within my healthy weight range rather than the ideal. The diet I use was effective when I stick to it and I felt satisfied after meals & I felt healthier after going on the diet than before. The problems are sticking to it when out with so many temptations. The odd day off is OK but lately there are many things affecting the diet. The issue is more psychological feeling bad when eating wrong when out and then eating more bad food & feeling worse physically & mentally.
I was seeing a physiotherapist who gave me specific exercises to assist me recover from multiple injuries. I was diligent but have let it slide lately now my injuries have healed. Exercise means any physical activity improving or maintaining fitness. I don't enjoy gyms & can't stick to traditional exercise regimes long term hence I don't want to see a personal trainer. I try to walk 30min a day at least usually to a set of 120 steps near us & try to climb them 3 times. I enjoy walking & figure the steps at least increases my fitness level. I can do the walk at when it suits me each day. Last year after injuring myself I had several incidents where I went out for a walk & then became so tired that I struggled to get home or to the car. This was so embarrassing & frustrating & stopped me being able to anything I enjoyed so I started doing VERY tiny walks each day & gradually increasing them. I now need to maintain the ability to walk both on the flat & on hills, steps etc because I hate not being fit enough to do things. Your 5 km a day sounds good. For me with my walking I need to remember why I'm doing it (so I am not restricted from doing things I enjoy particularly exploring places when we go out) Doing it to be able to what I want is more motivating than because I should achieve a goal.
I'm not good at mindfulness. I Know many people say it helps & it makes sense so my logical brain accepts I should do it. I need to get that logic into inspiration or motivation so I can learn to use it. to benefit me.
My challenge is knowing when to relax, recover or cope with the stresses & not beat myself up about not being productive & when to force myself to do things to take my mind off things & feel good about being productive.
Oh Elizabeth, my virtual Beyond Blue walking partner.
We can open up the walking thread again or perhaps start up another one. If you think it might help you in achieving your fitness goals there. I would jump at the opportunity to join you, because it was encouraging me before. But please don't feel pressured, I don't want to add anymore stress upon you.
Elizabeth, you certainly know what you have to do and have been doing it but you are just facing the same battles that we all face, keeping on track. Can be really hard to do and yes, i do fall for temptations regularly!
Love the idea of the walking thread. Where is that? Can you post a link to it.
Ok Elizabeth, I will re open the walking thread. I will look out for a post from you whenever you are feeling up to posting. No stress. Hope you feel better soon. And yeah I am okay, just struggling some with frustration and anger a bit is all.
Mark..I will open up the walking thread, pretty much after I leave Elizabeth's thread here.