More Than My Asthma
Last updated: May 2023
I have written several posts over the past few years regarding my asthma comorbidities...and how the list seems to keep growing. Over the past few months, I have finally started to feel better than I have felt in a very long time. Shhh... don’t let my asthma and its friends hear me saying that... I don’t want them to decide that it’s time for some mayhem.
Asthma and my other diagnoses
I have been chasing my baseline for more than a year. My heart interfered, then one respiratory infection after another, asthma exacerbations, COVID joined the party, then pneumonia, twice. As I sit here today preparing this post and thinking about the twisty, crazy path I have traveled in the last several years, I cannot help but feel grateful.
My asthma diagnosis came later in my life, it was followed very quickly with GERD, then lung cancer, vocal cord dysfunction, excessive dynamic airway collapse and new to the party are more complicated, but well managed, heart issues. So again, I feel grateful. All of my "players" are being managed successfully. I am finally very close to that elusive baseline.
Managing my asthma
I began monthly biologic injections for asthma in November. I am happy to report that they are making a remarkable difference in my asthma. Breathing is easier. My cough is infrequent, and my stamina is much better. Steps and inclines are still challenging but I am better able to push myself now than I was 6 months ago.
I have been followed closely for lung cancer, there are some new spots but so far they are not growing. My pulmonologist feels confident it will stay that way...again, grateful.
Monitoring and managing heart issues
The newer heart issues are completely under control, total mystery as to why the incident occurred, but my cardiologist monitors me closely. I take lots of new medications now, a small price to pay. Bottom line, it is under control and well-managed...grateful.
Vocal cord dysfunction, and airway issues
The vocal cord and collapsed airway issues are behaving and I think that having my asthma better controlled by the injections has helped to tame those issues...grateful.
Grateful for where I am in my journey
My theme is obviously gratitude. While navigating this rocky road over the past several years and especially in the past year, I cannot help but feel so very fortunate to have the doctors I have, access to the medications I need, and the support of a loving family, friends that I can count on, and a community like this to vent, and share ideas and experiences. Getting support from the community that truly knows what it is like to deal with a chronic illness, or even a few chronic illnesses is comforting and validating.
The path is not easy, the hunt for doctors you can trust to listen to you, who actually hear you, is daunting. It is not pleasant when you hear a diagnosis that complicates your life, then you hear another, and another. I know we all feel bewildered, and scared when faced with medical challenges that impact our daily life.
Asthma is a struggle for many of us. My life was turned upside down by asthma and the diagnoses that followed. My daily routine must include assessments about how my day can progress given my asthma and its friends. BUT...I am grateful to have the life I have. Excellent treatment, many resources at my fingertips, and above all, the people that keep me smiling and moving forward.
Challenges may still be waiting in the wings for me, but given the things I have already faced, I feel well-prepared for anything life has to throw at me...which makes me very grateful!!
Has laughter ever triggered your asthma?