Good Morning Ladies! Paula here to share an Everyday Miracle with you. The story starts back in October 2012. My doctor ran blood work and decided that my thyroid levels were normal and that at nearly 54 years old I should be on the other side of menopause. She took me off my thyroid medication and my hormones. This threw my body into a major trauma. I started suffering major anxiety as well as the symptoms of perimenopause - hot flashes, night sweats etc. as well as still having a regular monthly cycle. I obviously was not on the other side of menopause by a long shot. She let me go back on the hormones which helped a bit. As the weather grew colder and darker my depression set in. This year it was far worse than normal. I became afraid to be alone. A lot of time with prayer and devotions helped pull me out a bit but then other things started to happen. I was unaware of what had been happening until after I ended up in the hospital. I was blacking out for significant amounts of time daily. I was getting lost. One day I woke up so confused I felt like I remembered my Mom being when the Alzheimer’s got bad. I could not figure out right from wrong. I knew I was a Christian but I had to ask if this was a good thing. We went to the ER. They did a CT scan - thank God no signs of dementia or early onset Alzheimer’s. The blood work showed that my thyroid was indeed out of whack and I was put back on my thyroid hormones and advised to consider going into the hospital. At that time I was able to answer 30 of 30 cognitive questions correctly. I thought 3 or 4 days went by but I have been told it was 2 weeks. The decline continued. I was forgetting to eat. I was no longer able to drive. I could not answer simple basic questions, did not know where I was going or how to get anywhere. I was told I was talking a lot about my childhood and that I had recently gone to Celebrate Recovery and that some of the testimonies may have stirred up memories of childhood and teen sexual abuse and rape. We opted for the hospital. I have never been in or out patient for anything. I was scared but I was more afraid of not finding my way back from this black hole. Off to the psychiatric hospital we went.
I remember being in the waiting room with my ex-husband and then all the kids coming in to say good bye and give me a hug. Then I was taken to a room. The only female bed that night was in geriatrics. When I was awakened I was brought to yet another unit. I saw the man that admitted me. I had told him that I chose that hospital as I wanted to have art therapy. I told him that I was clean and sober for all those years but that the confusion was driving me crazy. He told me that he felt that they had assigned me incorrectly but that he was going to make sure I got to the unit that would be best for me. I was moved to a unit called 'Recovery'. I remember very little of my first week there. What I did know was that in my head I knew my full name but that when someone said my name I did not recognize it. I did not know the date. I have since seen papers that I completed during that first week and I wrote the date as 1916 (the year my Mom was born). I also filled out one and dated it 3/13/1313. Every day we completed forms about how we were feeling (depressed, anxiety, suicidal etc). It asked if there was anything that we felt should be added or that they could do to help with our treatment. I remember writing give me B12 shots and please listen to me. The next clear memory I have is standing in the med line and everyone was talking about when they came in, how long they were there, when they were being discharged etc. I realized that I had been there over a week. I still did not recognize my name. I continued to ask for B12 shots. I did not get any. Eventually with all the therapy, eating 3 good meals a day plus snacks and going to bed at 10 pm I started to improve. I was in-patient for 16 days and released to start the out-patient program. At this point I knew who I was, the correct date and all my necessary information but still did not have my sense of direction back and had trouble driving out of my neighborhood.
The first thing I did when I got home was to research B12 deficiency. Back in the 1980's I had been diagnosed with pernicious anemia. About 10 years ago the insurance carrier stopped covering my treatment and I stopped treating for it. The ER or the psych hospital would not do anything about my requests to be checked or for B12 shots. Only God could have told me to write THAT on my forms when I could not even recognize my own name. I discovered that not only does pernicious anemia need to be treated for life but that B12 deficiency causes any number of mental and physical debilitating diseases - many more than even what I had experienced. I found a You Tube video about this condition which I would recommend to anyone with any sort of mental or physical debilitating disease.
As I watched it the tears were streaming out of my eyes. I knew that God had led me to the answer to what had caused this most terrifying period of my life. I had a doctor’s appointment that day. I didn't know what time and had gone at 10am. The appointment was not until 2pm. I came home and that was when I found that video. I went back at 2 and insisted on testing. When the results were in, my B12 levels were significantly low and I started shots. I have been on my road to recovery for a year now which included the need to see a neurologist, a psychiatrist, a hematologist and more to see what type of damage can be reversed and what residual damage may remain so that I can learn to live with whatever I need to in the best possible way. But all in all without listening for the voice of God I would not have gotten my answer and found a way out of that deep dark black hole.