They all told me I was crazy.
Well, not in those exact words. But, by continually offering me anti-anxiety medication and anti-depressants, they were basically inferring that I was looney tunes.
Who you ask? And what was I doing that was so off-the-wall?
Doctors. The endless stream of them that I saw... a general practitioner, a gastroenterologist, a cardiologist, and an endocrinologist... all of whom told me nothing was wrong with me and eagerly offered me prescriptions for medications when I had the audacity to tell them that something was wrong with my body.
You see, by the end of 2012, I knew something was not right with my body. I was only in my early 30's and it basically felt like my body was falling apart on me. I had symptoms literally from my head to my toes, including:
- Low blood sugar/hypoglycemia
- Bruising easily
- Thinning hair
- Muscle pain and fatigue
- Heart palpitations
- Brain fog
- Debilitating fatigue
This was not just a little tickle in my throat.
I knew that something was wrong. And it wasn't an "Oh my gosh! I have a brain tumor and I'm dying!" type of overreaction either. I just knew my body and knew that something wasn't right. Something was causing this myriad of symptoms to cascade down my body.
Yet, every time I went to a doctor, I was told that nothing was wrong with me and sent on my merry way.
That is, until finally... in late 2012, I went to a naturopathic doctor. Almost immediately, he diagnosed me with advanced adrenal fatigue and the mystery was solved.
I wasn't crazy after all! Hurray!
Turns out, as a result of the string of traumatic events that I had been through back-to-back (which, little did I know... weren't even over yet at the time), my body's "fight or flight" response had pretty much been blown out and my adrenals had had enough.
They were on guard 24/7... always sending out the "emergency! emergency!" message to the rest of my body, even if the "emergency" was something as simple as me bending over to pick up a load of laundry or taking a shower.
ANY type of stress was now too much for my body, hence the massive overreaction and cascade of symptoms throughout my body.
Unfortunately, "traditional" medicine doesn't really recognize adrenal fatigue as a "real" thing (probably because you can't throw a pill at it). But thankfully, natural medicine does.
And that is when my life finally began to turn around and my health finally began to improve.
So, why am I telling you this? It's not just because I like to type.
I'm telling you this because SO many of us are walking around one step away from adrenal fatigue (or suffering from the symptoms already and don't even know it).
In fact, the book that was a life saver for me during my own health crisis, Adrenal Fatigue by James Wilson, even refers to it as the "21st century stress syndrome." Because most of us (in America) are overloaded, overworked and over-stressed. We run on coffee, energy drinks and no sleep, we work long hours, eat tons of sugar and salt, and live in a constant state of stress.
It's a wonder our adrenal glands hold up at all.
But what I hope for you is that - if you ARE having symptoms of adrenal fatigue, if your body IS crying out for help - that you recognize it before things get worse.
Don't wait until a traumatic event pushes you over the edge, like it did for me. Don't wait until you have to take a nap just to get through the day. Or you literally can't survive without some sort of caffeine.
Take notice now. Is your body crying out for help?
Do you always feel fatigued?
Do you get sick a lot?
Are you having a host of symptoms that seem related, yet you're not sure how?
Your body will tell you what it needs.
Now, whether you listen to it or not, is a whole other story. Your body may be telling you it desperately needs rest, but your response might be, "Here, here's another cup of coffee, now hush while I go do a million more things..."
Your body may be telling you it needs fresh vegetables, more water, less sugar. But, your response may be "Don't be silly, this diet coke will fix you right up!"
Believe me, I understand and there's no judgement here. But again, I'm trying to save you from going down the same road I did. For years, I "pushed through" not getting enough sleep, eating a terribly unhealthy diet, avoiding dealing with stress and hoping that it would all just magically "get better" on its own.
Except that it didn't.
It's up to YOU to take control of your own health and if you think something is wrong, don't give up until you figure out what it is.
It may not be adrenal fatigue. Or it may be. But the point is to listen to your body. Fight for it! Take care of it! And give it what it needs.
I promise you, the results will be well worth it.
Oh and p.s..... you're not crazy.