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Health Background

I am not sure how far I should go with this because illness is personal - and boring except to those suffering when it is painful. However by putting some of my health here in this blog, people might recognise similar symptoms and might see a way of helping themselves. I shall categorise by weakness:-

Liver

I will never know whether this weakness was totally self-inflicted. It began with .yes, the drink. My earliest recollection of the booze was at 16 when I puked up in a friend's house all over the family's new wallpaper. A week later I puked all over a friend's toilet at a party - it was appendicitis. Sadly I took no notice and was regularly drunk until I was 36, when thankfully I stopped. During this time I suffered occasional days that were easily associated with hangover but which I now associate as hangover-related liver symptoms. Whilst recently experiencing flu symptoms I now feel the same feeling in my liver area. How I stopped drinking was with acupuncture, and is written here.

In that same blog entry, I discussed Hepatitis Z. This is a non-existent disease but I called it that because I exhibited hepatitis-like symptoms for three months in Africa - waking up fine, getting home, sleeping after school, and repeated for three months. The doctor described my symptoms as those of a heavy drinker yet I hadn't touched a drop in 7 years. My liver was obviously damaged by the booze, yet at that time I also associated it with protecting me from all the diseases etc. that Africa puts in your system for all kinds of eco-sociological reasons. Yet going to Africa was such a rejuvenating move.

I sadly left Botswana, and moved from one stressful international school job after another; this stress and its causes are discussed as a theme throughout my education blog. With the death of my parents I was lucky to come into a small inheritance, and after two years I was able to retire to Thailand where I have begun a journey that includes coping with my health (now covered in this, my macrobiotic blog).

The point about this and my liver is that sadly my liver never improved because of all the stress, and it is only now in retirement that I can begin to address the problem. In my last job, the most stressful, I was under continuous stress because of a lunatic situation in the school. I would regularly go home and give myself internal stress bolts to the liver. On occasions I would wake up stressed and feel the tiredness and "stomach" complaints that I now realise was the liver - these feelings were in part the same as those mentioned above when I was still drinking.

Starting the Diet

In retirement I had calmed down, I wasn't feeling stressed and was (and am) enjoying my life tremendously. My diet was reasonable but I didn't eat exactly the way I would choose because of being in Thailand (see sourcing food). My bulk was thinning but had come to a standstill. The night before a recent trip to Bangkok I woke up with a horrible taste of bile in my mouth; this had happened before but not as foul. And after my journey to Bangkok I had a migraine. Both of these spurred me to go into a Natural medical centre whilst in Bangkok where I was diagnosed with GERD (I don't suffer the more serious symptoms). Cure - the diet.

Cervical Spondylitis

Sadly this caused my mother great pain as did other of her bones, and I have inherited it. It is in my upper back, and I first associated it with academic stoop. I fell over the front of my pushbike, the collar bone cracked and has healed slightly out of shape. I regularly had migraines never associating it with my back until my acupuncturist pointed it out; at 48 my shoulder muscles were seriously scrunched up. Sadly the migraines did not end, and more and more I associated them with digestion until now I am sure they are connected with the liver. At the moment I cope with the spondylitis through exercise, swimming was excellent for it.

Loose Cartilege

I think this started when rambling. I ran down a hill with clumps of grass and twisted my knee. I got up and it seemed OK until soon after my leg locked when playing football and I was carried off. At uni I was very unfit and I would get up quickly and the knee would lock slightly. I was taken to a specialist who told me the cartilage was loose, and when I moaned I wanted it removed he refused because it would increase arthritis. This angered me but I now thank him - well he must be dead but you know what I mean.

Ever since then I have lived with the possibility of the knee locking. When the muscles were strong it did not happen, and I even could kick left-footed. But now in retirement the knee feels continually weak, and I am afraid of locking.

I feel thankful that these are the only health burdens life has dumped on me.

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