Live and Learn

Muriel from Blog

As time passes, I’ve had to change my mind on many issues — just one of which is wondering why otherwise intelligent people can throw money away on promises of unlikely cures. I didn’t understand, for instance, why people with cancer would pay thousands of dollars to go to some Mexican clinic to be given shots made of apricot pits. Did they really think it would work? Why, I thought, would they be so gullible as to believe charlatans and frauds who offer magical cures for whatever? (Thank goodness delicacy required me to keep my mouth shut on the subject at the time.)
You know I’ve dealt with dizziness, nausea and imbalance for years. Episodes in the past were awful, but less frequent. During the 1990s, they hit with a vengeance and tenacity I was unable to cope with. I, myself, became one of those “gullible” people. I now realize it is not so much gullibility as desperation.

The dizziness was so persistent, I was unable to cope

The dizziness was so persistent, I was unable to cope

I, who had flatly refused to take hormones, who questioned and refused just about every prescription any doctor tried to give me, suddenly accepted, bought, payed for, swallowed and did whatever my doctor or anyone else suggested might help. I wanted my life back!
Antivert didn’t help, so I tried SERC, then Dramamine, then, as recommended, I doubled the SERC. I tried a diuretic. I was willing! I was desperate! I was even ready to try inner ear surgery which causes deafness but “might” eliminate the dizziness. (I later did have that surgery, but whatever was causing the dizziness had by then also caused deafness in that ear, so there was nothing to lose.) It too did NOT cure the dizziness.
“We just got a brand new product in for nausea,” suggested my local pharmacist, who no longer had to ask my name. I bought it… It didn’t work.
“Have you tried acupuncture?” inquired a business associate over the phone.
“No, do you know someone?”
I didn’t know her, but I accepted her recommendation anyway.
“How about a holistic practitioner?” someone else proposed.
What’s his number?” I asked.
I was ready to try anything. If someone had promised the dizziness, imbalance and nausea would go away if I stood on my head and spit nickels, I’d have tried that too.

 Off-balance, dizzy and suffering with nausea, I would try anything

Off-balance, dizzy and suffering with nausea, I would try anything

As you can imagine, I wasn’t doing much cooking and jokingly threatened to turn my kitchen into a bedroom, but the shelves began to look more like a large medicine cabinet, lined with containers full of prescriptions and remedies that didn’t work. I thought I’d have to toss out some dishes just to make more space.
I popped pills, was poked by needles, swallowed vile-tasting, expensive Chinese herbs and solutions as directed, plus I obeyed and consumed nothing but cooked foods. My body had “too much dampness and too little energy”, and there was a heck of a lot of work to be done on my “spirituality”!
Finally, I came to the conclusion that what I definitely didn’t have enough of was — money, to pay for it all — I had become too ill to work.
Being desperate enough to grab at any solution myself, I learned an important lesson and was, once again, humbled. Vestibular disorders don’t kill you, but they can make you wish you were dead. So I now fully understand how others suffering from incurable and possibly life-threatening diseases can succumb to the hope held out by those bastards who prey on our vulnerabilities.
And, I’m still learning…..


3 thoughts on “Live and Learn

  1. Yeah… I think they are all taking stabs in the dark… I think the patients know a lot more specific knowledge than practioners, because we specialize 24/7 in our illnesses.
    . . . It sounds awful Muriel. In pursuing the TCM herbs you mention, one night I actually experienced, ironically, what it sounds like you’ve had to deal with your whole life. I lay face down on the bed, if I moved my head to the other side I felt dizzy and discombobulated until I stopped moving my head. Standing up and trying to move towards the bathroom was a nightmare.
    . . . That was the one and only time I tried that. The Chinese TCM doc didn’t seem to know why it was happening, or whether it SHOULD be happening, or what benefit these herbs would yield.
    . . . Not getting any information from him I decided to switch to someone else where they didn’t make me dizzy, but I wasn’t sure anything was doing anything.

    Its too bad. I think there is a TON of usefullness in TCM or naturopathy. But I don’t feel like doing the immense research and vetting of different practioners to find the one that knows what they are doing, or I guess knows about my type of situation.
    . . . And most people I hear from seem to have similar results to you, Muriel – ie. no useful results.

    So, I pursue the generalist approach – vitamins, sleep, exercise, conscientious diet, and meditation. Arm your body and let it do what it does best…


  2. Those herbs may have been helping me, but if I’m going to feel THAT awful, I want to make DAMN sure that they ARE doing what we want. I have never felt so bad in my life. Horrible dizziness and just feeling horribly, horribly unwell, till I went to sleep and they wore off.

  3. Thank you, a good read – but you don’t say what worked in the end, so maybe nothing did? Don’t forget celery seed capsules for gout though, I’ve recommended them to others and they work for them as well as me!

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