Before my appointment to review my GI Map with Anya, I was feeling a little on edge about the results. I felt like I was back in school waiting to be handed back a grade for a test that I didn’t study for. Through this anxiety, I have realized that I have a lot of “fear of the unknown” wrapped up in my medical experiences. Fear that I’ll find out something terrible about my health that would monumentally alter my life. Fear that all the years of not taking care of myself and not regularly going to the doctor had finally caught up with me (and now it was too late). Fear that there would be no answers or that I would just be told the same things I’ve always been told.
So much fear… I’ll unpack the exact source of all of these fears another time but this did make me realize that I have been using the “ignorance is bliss” mantra for too long, and it was time to face reality.
Whatever my worst case scenario imagination could come up with, or the most likely scenario of I just might need to stop eating so much cheese…I do believe it is always better to know. Ignorance has not been offering me peace, because it gnaws at me to not know. Even if you receive “bad” information, it is still better knowing where you currently are because this knowledge moves you in a direction instead of remaining stuck.
In this process, I am challenging myself to remain present and look for joy in the ordinary moments and small rituals that bring comfort. Ignoring the bad also means ignoring the good, and though it might seem easier to ignore and numb out, it means missing out on joy too. I do not want to play life safe and miss out on the best parts, mess and all.
To help ease my anxiety leading into this appointment, I had my health coach Stevie sit in on my GI Map review. This offered me comfort knowing someone else would be there to help listen and take in all the information. As thoroughly as Anya has explained everything to me thus far, it’s all still a lot to take in and I knew I would have a lot of questions. This made me feel like it was a team event and everyone had an integral role to play (myself included).
As it was explained to me, the results are this: my gut health was not as bad as Anya thought it was going to be. So this means further investigation into other reasons as to why foods have been making me feel so physically uncomfortable. I was not getting an A+ grade by any means, but it was a relief to hear that at least some of my efforts to eat well weren’t completely a loss. I do genuinely eat a lot of vegetables and apparently that counted for something!
Anya mentioned that some of my discomfort immediately after eating could have more to do with my gallbladder (which I’m embarrassed to admit that I had no idea your gallbladder had anything to do with digestion). The term that was used was “sluggy sluggish” (my favorite terms of endearment btw), and that my sluggy gallbladder may have trouble helping to process fat. I was then prescribed a supplement regimen to take for the next 6 weeks, along with a powder to drink that I was warned tastes terrible (spoiler alert: it does taste terrible). Also … if you want to see Anya break down my stool test results, we have a short video on this.
To say that I left my appointment feeling relieved is an understatement. I had things to work on and did not have all the answers yet, but this felt like momentum in taking action. I might not currently see the light at the end of the tunnel, but for the first time in a long time I believe it’s there.
So where are we now? Although my gut health is not at catastrophic levels, I still have inflammation that Anya would like to see go down. How will we accomplish this? Through my greatest fear: being dairy and gluten free — stay tuned for more on this!
Feelings this week: Annoyed that I have to go gluten and dairy free.
Favorite moment from experience: Having the time and space to ask all the questions.
Something I am currently loving: Looking for ordinary joy moments, trying to romanticize my life.
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