If you could go back in time and talk to yourself (or your loved one) on the day of diagnosis, what would you say?
This is a pretty powerful prompt today. If I could go back in time to talk to myself, my whole life would be different.
First, I was never really scared so I would be there to calm myself. I think the biggest thing that was going through my head was just wondering what was wrong. I remember just when I got my diagnoses. I remember sitting in my bed, being handed some pamphlets and just having a blank stare of bewilderment. This was all new to me and I had never heard of Ulcerative Colitis or Crohn’s Disease. I think I was more confused than scared which caused me to deny what I had.
So if I had a future me to talk to, I think it would have been great. I would sit with myself and explain just what it is I have and how it is going to affect me. I would explain to myself in basic terms what it is that I have and correct the initial diagnoses. I remember being told I had UC, because later on when I found a regular GI, not a Pedi GI, he would tell me I have CD because he saw it in my ileum.
Next I would explain to myself that I am not alone. I went through life for many years not knowing or talking to anyone that had IBD. I felt very alone in the world with my disease. This past year and a half I have met hundreds of people with IBD and I now know I am not alone. Now of course I was diagnosed pre-internet so I still would have to wait to really meet everyone. I would however encourage myself to get more involved with CCFA.
Lastly, I would prepare myself for the meds. I have not had success with medicine and I it has cause a lot of frustration and stress on myself. I would prepare myself for this.
Now, I know many people would think that if they could go back in time and talk to themselves, that they would probably do most of the same things. But I would do one more thing. I would guide myself in job choices and give myself some winning lottery numbers. Come on, if I could go back in time, I might as well make it worth my while 🙂