#dSavannahDefects – Q is for…

My theme this year for the #AtoZchallenge is #dSavannahDefects, aka “What’s it’s like dealing with #InvisibleIllnesses”. Or, in short, {some of} what’s wrong with me.

Q… Questions

One of the most difficult things about being a Sick Person is all the questions I have. Questions that seemingly have no answers, that lead down a rabbit hole to more questions. With no real answers.

Of course, the biggest question of them all is:


followed closely on its heels by:


And there’s no answer to either one of those. The big WHY is a question that is best to let go of. It’s not productive, and can actually be hurtful. Even tho it’s the most natural question in the world to ask when you’re faced with any kind of illness, invisible or not.

When I first went to my holistic doctor a year ago, she felt certain that my problem was lack of progesterone, one of those annoying “female” hormones. She even prescribed it for me. But turns out, that’s not it.

So we’ve tried other things, and discovered other things. A year later, we have some answers, but not enough. Not all of them. But I’m continuing to look, and research, and read. I’m not giving up. And neither is she.

word cloud questionsYou should ask a lot of questions before you even go to a doctor. Like, check out their reviews on sites like citysearch.com, 2findlocal.com, healthgrove.com, vitals.com, yellowpages.com, doctor.com, and kudzu.com. Google the doctor’s name with “sucks” or “complaints” or the like and see what pops up. If you see anything that looks… fishy… you don’t have to go to them.

When you finally go to a new doctor for the first time, be sure to take every detail of your current health info with you. I take my document and a folder with all of my imaging studies. If you can, get their paperwork beforehand and complete it, so you don’t forget something important. And so your doctor can read your answers.

And of course, most importantly, take a list of questions with you. Everything you can think of that pertains to the reason you’re going to the doctor in the first place. It will help you focus, as well as use the doctor’s time wisely.

And there are lots and lots of questionnaires online that you can print and take to your doctor. The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality even has an online tool to help you build a list of questions specific to your situation. Here are a LOT of questions to ask if you’ve been diagnosed with cancer; some questions to ask if you have general health issues; and the National Institute on Aging has a list of questions for you to ask yourself before you get to the doctor!

Too often we’re taught (especially as women) that the doctor is an authority figure and thus must know what they’re doing, but… the truth is … they are as human as you are. They put their pants on one leg at a time, just like you do. They have kids to take to school, friends to buy presents for, significant others they might be in a fight with….  Be compassionate for them, but remember: they are working FOR you. If they don’t also work WITH you, you can fire them and find a new doctor.

And, by the way, the same goes for taking medications. I was reading about one I’d been prescribed, and the reviews people had written regarding its side effects, and they were all blaming their doctors for prescribing the medication. Cuz some of the side effects were brutal.

Dude. It is *our* responsibilities as patients to research and find out what medications ~ and doctors! ~ we think will work best for us, and not just take the doctor’s word for it. Ask the doctor prescribing it! Ask the pharmacist! Ask the google! Ask! Ask! Ask!

Persevere, my friends! And don’t be afraid to question!

More ramblings / other posts you might want to read...


About dSavannah

~ #disabled #spoonie fighting numerous, chronic, painful #InvisibleIllnesses ~ also #wife #feminist #ally #advocate #papyrophiliac #DogCatTurtleWrangler
This entry was posted in #AtoZchallenge2016, #dSavannahDefects, health, illness, making a difference, perseverance. Bookmark the permalink.

14 Responses to #dSavannahDefects – Q is for…

  1. Ruth says:

    We were always told in school the only dumb question is the one that isn’t asked. I recently went to a training class for Sunday School teachers that tweaked that a bit in defining if a question is good. “A good question is one that makes you think.” So keep asking and thinking!!!

  2. Elaine LeDoux says:


  3. It takes courage to walk in and ask your questions. Doctors, like any other people, come in a variety of sorts, and though it’s ostensibly a helping career, I’ve been treated like I was stupid or problematic when I’ve asked questions at times. Luckily, I live somewhere with lots of health care options, so I can be quick on that “you’re fired” button.

    @mirymom1 from
    Balancing Act

    • dSavannah dSavannah says:

      That’s true. It does take courage to not only ask the questions, but press on and not back down if you’re not getting answers. And I’ve been treated the same way. At least I’ve learned not to put up with it!

  4. Betsy says:

    Glad you are finally getting some of your questions answered.

  5. My mother in law has a number of chronic health conditions – writing down questions and keeping a good health log is a must. Sharing.

Whatcha think? Tell me, tell me!