As some of you know, for the last few weeks I had totally been off my feeding tube. I had been living off Ensures. My stomach was handling it pretty well. Some discomfort, but no severe nausea or throwing up. That was huge. Extreme nausea and throwing up had been part of my eating and drinking experience the past few years. But here I was taking in some Ensures and not spending the rest of the day in the bathroom.
Some of you will recall my trip to Emory in Atlanta back in July. My doctors had referred my case to Emory to discuss the possibility of having a procedure to help with the gastroparesis. It was during that trip that I felt God starting to heal my stomach or at least allow the gastroparesis to go into remission. I had a army of family, friends and strangers praying for my stomach to be healed or at least go into remission. As you can see from my first paragraph I believe that prayer was answered. Praise be to God.
Also during my trip to Emory, I truly believed God was going to allow me to eat and drink again. I felt that would be part of my stomach being healed or the gastroparesis going into remission. As I was drinking the Ensures the past few weeks, I was having issues with choking. I have dealt with this problem for a few years due to my Parkinson’s. It is called Dysphagia. First, I thought since I had not really been eating or drinking for a few years, my muscles were weak and just needed to get stronger. I was so excited to be off the feeding tube, I didn’t want to believe it was my Parkinson’s causing the issues. It was such a relief to be off the feeding tube. But, as the choking continued I knew the cause was not from my muscles needing to get stronger, but my Parkinson’s causing the issues. I could not ignore it any longer.
So this past weekend I went back on my feeding tube full time. I am not going to lie, I am disappointed. As I shared earlier, it was great being off the feeding tube. If you have never been hooked up to a machine for any period of time, it is hard to explain the pure happiness I was experiencing. Several people have inquired about me using a thickening formula to help drink the Ensures and any food I might try. Sadly, based on me having several other medical issues the thickening formula has never worked for me. I have tried it on several occasions with poor results. So for now, I will stick with the feeding tube.
As I shared before this latest setback is disappointing, but it has not broken me or shaken my faith. Instead of dwelling on the negatives, I am choosing to look at the positives. I am thankful I did not get rid of my feeding formula and supplies. I am thankful I did not have my feeding tube removed. I am thankful I am able to get the nutrients my body needs. I will continue to do my best to fight my health issues with a positive attitude and grateful heart. I will continue to share my story in the hopes that it encourages at least one person. I promise to keep fighting and giving God the glory for all my blessings. ~OC