Saturday, 17 May 2014

Refusing treatment

I'm not great at making decisions. Right now, for instance, I'm trying to decide (again) where to move to and how and when.

I sometimes feel my life is a litany of decisions that, well , perhaps haven't served me in the best way. But then who's to say?If I'd made a different one then it could have led to death and destruction. I mean, probably not but it could have.

Recently I made a decision that has left me all sorts of  uncomfortable. I don't know that it's the right one and all I have to go on is that it feels right. Or at least, the alternative feels wrong.

It concerns treatment for my irritating and boring illness. It concerns hardcore hormone shots that would bring on a temporary menopause in the hopes that this will somehow kickstart my system and change the hormone balance so that I won't feel like I'm dying for one week out of every four. It concerns side effects ranging from hair loss to severe depression. It concerns feeling out of control of my body as the drugs do whatever they like on a slow release for a month. It concerns things I'm just not comfortable with.

I have endured five years of different treatments for this illness, including two operations. None of the treatments have helped. The doctors freely admit that it is all experimentation. Everyone is different. What helps one person hurts another and it looks like I'm in the percentage of people who don't  respond well to the normal endometriosis control.

The night before my first shot I snapped. Privately and quietly. Suddenly I didn't want this treatment. Suddenly I made the decision to say no. There is such a low chance it will help and the side effects are so severe that I decided to deal better with what I know.

I've never refused treatment in my life. It seems churlish and partisan. As if I'm saying I know more than doctors. As if I'm not willing to help myself. As if I'm an ungrateful git as I am blessed to live in a country with accessible healthcare.

But I didn't have the injection. And I didn't have the second one. And in a couple of weeks I will go back to the hospital and tell them that I didn't have their prescribed treatment.

The only real cure for my condition is to have a baby or have a hysterectomy.

Neither of which I want.

I've decided what I need to do instead of chasing treatment that makes it worse and dashes my hopes. I need to accept it for what it is and learn to live with it. As illnesses go, it's a shitter but it could be so much worse. This is my lot and I will learn to manage it better and be thankful that, for now, I'm not suffering from something more dreadful.



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