So, I had a rant prepped and ready to go where I bitched about the propensity for medical professionals explaining away actual health issues as "the new normal" or "just part of being a woman". Then I thought, "Fuck that." I've got too much to be thankful for to spend time bitching about what's not going my way.
As some of you know, I've been recently diagnosed with Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS). As I've been saying for years, my hormones are fucked up. The diagnosis explains a great many things and, with a doctor on my side, there is direction to kick PCOS square in its pink parts. These next few weeks I'll be starting new meds and removing certain things from my diet. Wheat and dairy are chief among them, followed closely by alcohol and caffeine. I also have to limit my fruits and carbs as my body has essentially become insulin resistant.
Anyway... I told you that to tell you this: I am surrounded by awesomeness.
I told my friends/family about this change, and so far everyone has been as helpful as I will allow. (I admit I can be stubborn, so sometimes I turn down the offer for help because I want to try something on my own first.) But I have many friends dealing with PCOS, many who are gluten free and/or dairy free. My husband has offered to follow a looser form of my diet rather than sit back and watch me nibble on peppers and sugar snap peas while he enjoys a heaping plate of lasagna and garlic bread. (Amazing one I've got there.)
The best response, though, came from my daughter. My beloved 8 year old saw us taking food off the shelves and boxing them up to give to friends. Can't cook with this kind of oil or eat that kind of cracker any more...so here ya go, right? Anyway, she saw this and asked what was going on, so we explained that my body doesn't process sugars from dairy and wheat in the way it should. Because of that, I have to take those things out of my diet. We explained that she's still growing and usually makes very healthy choices (even if they lack variety), so she doesn't have to follow the same diet I do, but that Sean would do it to support me.
My daughter's face screwed up in consternation. "That's not fair. It's not okay for us to eat normally when you can't. That's torture!"
Oh, my sweet girl. She started crying at the thought that there are things we can't share. (This milk is for Mom, this is for you.) I explained that I'm not sad about it. Sure, I'm going to miss some things (chocolate and chai being at the top of that list), but that this is best for me in the long run. So it's not torture.
She accepted this after a while...but she still wanted a snuggle or two. We cuddled and she drifted to sleep.
I'm blessed that at 8 she still reaches out to twirl her fingers in my hair for comfort. I don't know what I've done to deserve that kind of love but I hope I continue to earn it.
Damn I love that kid.
In other news...have I mentioned how lucky I am to have a network of professionals who will help a sister out when she has questions or needs a new set of eyes? Yeah, I worry that I can't repay that, or that I'm selfish or needy. I try very hard to always play quid-pro-quo. But there are some people who just help regardless. You fucking rock my stripey socks.