Thank you so much for your prayers. I don't always think to ask for prayer for myself but, like duh! I need it just as much as the next guy. Thank you again, I really appreciate it. And God answered quickly.
I made a visit to a new (to me) female doctor for my female issues and boy am I glad to have that visit done! It's been 4 years so I was overdue. But this lady doctor was really, really great - it wasn't the average doctor visit. For starters, she has set up practice on her own now and runs the whole show (answers the phone, etc.) She used to be at our local hospital but moved to Portland and can't yet afford to have any office staff. So it was just me and the doc for 1-1/2 hours. Like visiting a friend. And she knew my husband and my primary physician, which was also beneficial. It was tiring to drive 2 hours there and 2 hours back but I'm so glad I did.
So the diagnosis? (Drum roll, please ...) Mild diastasis of the rectus abdominus muscle. I can almost say it now. In layman's terms, this means the muscle that goes down the front of my belly, from my belly button on down, is split. Mildly. Ugh. This happens with pregnancy, as the belly expands rapidly and the muscle is stretched. This is an important muscle and holds up a lot of organs, from what I can see in diagrams. Apparently, I have had this damage for at least 7 years (since my last baby) but have recently done more damage to it. Which has caused several problems that seemed to me to be muscular in nature but I couldn't figure out why. Now I know. And the reason I am writing all this is in the hopes that one of you have heard of this and might know what I can do for it. There are exercises to help repair the problem but I am finding it difficult to get more information. There is a book somewhere but I can't find it yet. In the meantime, I am trying to be more careful with my stomach muscles and have better posture, which helps.
And this is interesting ... in all the info I have come across, one message is clear, "Do NOT do sit ups or crunches!!" I have been meaning to start doing sit-ups for about a month or more but just never did them - now I know why! I believe God was keeping me from doing them. I really do! He knows these things, obviously, before we do. I am thankful!
And my doctor said I was "fit"! I've never been told that! It really made me feel good - isn't that silly? My husband says I look great and I've been told I was thin, but to be told I was "fit" ... I don't know, it just rang pleasantly in my ear. Even if my insurance doesn't cover the cost of my office visit, it was all worth it!
Finally ... today we had a beautiful day. I even sat on the deck this evening, reading, with the sun shining on me. It felt wonderful. Yes, I had on sunscreen. But it still felt wonderful.
The fog has begun to lift. Literally.