Megan’s Story – One Year Later
“Thank you all so much. You are wonderful people, who give people their lives back. I wish there were more places and people like you in this world.”
It’s been a year since Megan started her journey with POTS Care and her road to recovery. In this testimonial, Megan reflects on the past year and how it has changed her life from fighting off a cold, to walking her first 5k to raise awareness for POTS!
When I realized what the date was today, it hit me. Exactly a year ago today is when I entered into your office and started my journey to healing. It is super crazy to think how fast the time has went. Looking back on how things have changed this past year, I can barely remember what things used to be like for me. That is crazy to say, I used to think I would never get my old life back again. Now, I am sitting here and I can’t imagine what I used to be like a year ago. My old life is back. My mom has said many times “she is back to herself.”
Things didn’t magically get better over night. Like you said; it was gradual. There are many things I don’t even remember changing and going back to normal; they have just changed without me knowing it. I now feel safe taking a shower when I am home by myself. Someone used to have to be around for me to feel safe, just in case I passed out while I was in the shower. I also feel safe enough to stay at home by myself; which has been a good thing since I have been teaching from home since March. In the past, the heat and humidity bothered me something terrible and I wouldn’t be able to get off the couch. Now I can tolerate them, I just get more tired than most people. I have been able to be out in the sun and heat a lot this summer, and have accomplished many things. I helped stain my parents’ house, in the direct heat of the summer sun in Wisconsin. I have been able to tolerate the humidity and heat we have been experiencing for the last two weeks.
I work out twice a day. In the morning, when I get up, I get on my recumbent bike and ride for 15-20 minutes where I crank out 3.5-4 miles. Then I go for a walk with my dog and husband in the evening. The walk is more like a marathon. My dog walks a 15 minute mile. He means business when he is out there. Needless to say, we walk 2 miles in 30 minutes. I was a fit person before I got sick with POTS, then I could barely accomplish 15 minutes on my bike. Now I am back to getting into shape. The exercise has given me more energy to do other things.
Many people have commented on my discipline to stick to the anti-inflammatory diet. At first it seemed liked something that was gong to be challenging for me, and I didn’t know how close I would follow it. By following it, I do believe it has made a huge difference. I can feel it in my body when I have too many “cheat days.” After being on this diet, I feel like I eat better than before I got sick. I am eating a bigger variety of food, in order to get my nutrients. I am also eating new things I haven’t eaten before.
One of the biggest differences I have noticed is, I don’t have to go in to get fluids anymore. I was up to at least one bag of fluids every three weeks before coming to see you, and I haven’t gone to get any fluids in over a year! I only caught one cold this school year, and I usually caught everything the kids were sharing. It was great not to be sick the whole school year. I did catch another cold the weekend we roofed our house. My nieces were sick, and so was my mom. I had been home away from everyone for three months, because of our “Safer at home order.” So when they were around I caught it, because I had no immunity anymore. The good thing is, in two weeks I was able to fight that cold by myself. That is something that hasn’t happened for me in years.
I no longer have to worry or be afraid of what might happen to me when I go places. I don’t have any reaction. I can just go an enjoy myself. My POTS would flare when I went places before, and I would always have to know where the closest door was so I could leave if they got too bad. Not anymore. I can be in the middle of everything. I just wish this summer I could go more places and do things, but I can wait and do them when things become safer.
Here is a funny thing. Ryan and I were driving to his cousin’s house (we have went there plenty of times before). On the way to their house, I said it was like I was really seeing everything on the way to their house for the first time. I don’t think I actually remembered what road to turn on to get to their house, until recently. I sure do not miss the brain fog. I enjoy remembering things and being on top of things again. It does feel weird when you see things again clearly for the first time after years of being in a fog. I have started to have more confidence to start driving again, with my husband in the vehicle with me. It’s like riding a bike. I now have to see how far I can drive……..that will be the next step. Then I will have my total freedom back again. In this last year, I have definitely learned there’s nothing I can’t do. I have been through so much, and was able to overcome it and come out better on the other side.
Next week, I am going to do my first 5k to help raise awareness for POTS. I will be walking, not to the running yet but some day.
I truly want to say thank you to you all for giving me my life back. I get to enjoy everything again, and keep up with my almost 3 year old twin nieces. I am not sure where I would be today, if I hadn’t decided I was fed up enough with the answers I was getting from other doctors. I am so glad I made that phone call to you in May. Who I was a year ago is just a distant memory to me now. I do watch to make sure my symptoms aren’t sneaking back up on me. I don’t want to go backwards now.
Thank you all so much. You are wonderful people, who give people their lives back. I wish there were more places and people like you in this world. Hope you are all staying safe and having a wonderful life.