I have an eating disorder, but not the one you are thinking of. It is not the one where I am obsessed with being thin and wasting away to nothing. Been there, done that. I slayed that demon when I was in my twenties. No, I have a different kind of eating disorder. You see, for about one week every month, every time I eat I have pain in my chest and upper abdominal area as well as severe nausea and sometimes vomiting. My doctor has already eliminated any gastrointestinal problems as the cause, meaning I have to endure more tests to solve this conundrum.
Meanwhile, I am left with episodes of pain and nausea. Now I am scared to eat. I see the numbers dropping on the scale. I have to admit that at first I was thrilled. My old demons tried to tell me this was good. But I knew better. Now I am scared of the numbers falling. I am scared when my clothes simply hang on me. I am scared of eating.
The way the healthcare process works in the US means it could take months if not years to find an answer to my health problems. You know what I mean: initial appointment with specialist takes a few months to get, then it takes another month to get first tests done, then another month or two to get appointment to see the specialist again. This can repeat over and over again. I first saw my current GI doctor back in January. In that time, I have had two tests completed plus bloodwork. Now I am waiting another month to have another test done with a two-month wait until the doctor has another appointment opening. My biggest fear is that my weight will drop down to critical level or malnutrition will force me to the ER. I cannot imagine going through this delayed process if I had cancer. Americans like to make fun of social medicine in Canada and the UK for their long service wait times. But, HELLO PEOPLE! We are just as bad in the good US of A!
There is nothing scarier than knowing your health is going downhill and being at the mercy of a slow system of care. It is crazy that in this day and age with the level of technology we have that healthcare has not moved out of the 20th century.