Testing My Body

Today, Thursday, has been a really interesting day, and I’m keen to share.

On Tuesday, I decided to look up podcasts on Bronchiectasis (thank goodness for auto-correct, it knows how to spell it and hopefully soon, I won’t have to remember!). I chose a medical one and started listening.

It gave a lot of the science and it also talked about how Bronchiectasis is a permanent, long term lung disease (which I don’t believe, but anyway). I listened to about 10 minutes before I got distracted and moved onto something else.

It got me questioning myself though, is it really permanent – am I kidding myself?

My philosophy is this: At some point on my journey, most likely when I had pneumonia, my lungs needed more air than they were getting. In order to do this, my lungs went ‘let’s widen so we can get in the air Susan’s body needs to function.’ So my body went to work doing that.

Then at some point I was fortunate (I’m joking here) to bring in this Non-Tuberculosis Mycobacterium (NTM – again thank you auto-correct), which when my lungs widened, it thought ‘ohhhh goody, more space to grow into, let’s PARTY!’ And it did. The amount of mucus I coughed up increased.

Then my body went, oh we don’t want you in here, so it naturally my body found ways for me to remove it and this was largely through coughing it up.

In essence, my body was doing the best it could to make sure it could function – at it’s best. 

  • Widening my airways so I could breathe – tick.
  • Kicking out the bug in my lungs by wrapping it in mucus and coughing it out of my body – tick.

Annoying as it all was, it’s actually really cool right – my body did that to support me!! Thank you body.

So, I figure, if my body can create this, then my body can uncreate this – and that’s not to put all the pressure on my body to do it, I actually have to turn up and help it heal.

I have to do the work and not ‘magically’ think it’s going to change just by thought alone (although that’s super powerful and part of the process too).

Imagine this, what if I could reduce the mucus in my lungs, and if the mucus wasn’t there (long term goal) then my bronchial tubes could contract back to normal size? It’s a possible theory right?

So now you know my philosophy on this whole adventure, let’s get back to today – Thursday and why it’s been so interesting.

I woke up at 5.15am this morning. I had a work call at 6am and I get up at that time to boil my jug and make my Chinese herbal tea – that takes 5 minutes (my tea steeps for 20 minutes). Whilst the jug is boiling, I go down to my office, turn on the light, uncover my microphone, log into my computer, check my email and make sure I have everything I need for my call (which I do because I set it up the night before). Make sure my Remarkable is in the middle of my desk, and my ear phones are ready to go.

Then I headed down to my kitchen, pour my herbal tea and I get back into bed with Chris for a 20 minute cuddle before getting on my call.

I’m so low maintenance on my calls, no makeup and my hair pulled back. Super easy and super authentic.

I coughed twice when I was at my desk checking email etc. 2 x dry cough, then I coughed again when I got up to get on my call, again 2 x dry cough.

During my two calls, I muted myself to clear my throat, but it was just a bit of mucus, nothing to worry about and nothing that I needed to spit out in a tissue. It was more of that niggly mucus that makes your voice sound hoarse.

I got off my calls at 9.30am, and has one decent piece of mucus to bring up – it was about the size of a 20c piece. I then went out to mulch my garden and I coughed up a couple of little bits of mucus, again small and nothing to think about.

I then meditated, had lunch with Chris, had a shower and sat down to write.

At about 1.30pm I had more mucus come up, but it was liquid, no more than a teaspoon (even though it feels like a tablespoon in my mouth!) and it was done. I’ve coughed a few times since but the was it.

This is the interesting bit, when I was in the shower I had the thought, ‘maybe it’s time to test my mucus.’ Ohhh that’s interesting, I thought. What I meant by this was to eat and do things that created the mucus, like going gluten free for a while and then adding it back in to see if your body could tolerate it.

I knew I wasn’t at the point of testing out my mucus response but the fact that I had the though meant that things were changing and soon, not far away, I’ll be ready to test my body and see what happens!

My ultimate goal is to be NTM free for 5 years. That’s what I can see is possible for me, and when I do that my bronchial tubes will stabilise, returning to normal, and I will have healed.

This is the journey that I’m on and I’m excited!

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