My results came back and they are fine. My level is 9. Anything above 9 is considered a risk, so I am right at the top end. Patrick Holford advises anything over 6 is less than optimum. So all in all, I might have slightly higher homocysteine levels, but considering I am a 42 year old coeliac with osteoarthritis and I am permanently exhausted, that’s not too bad, right?
After this, and the breast clinic visit, and my reasonably good blood results from December, I have had a bit of a think. The mind-body connection is a phrase bandied around a lot, but maybe in my case a lot of my ill health really does stem from my mental health, not my physical condition. The negative effects of stress and depression on the body are slowly being accepted by mainstream doctors. My mental health has been poor, pretty much since I became a mother seven and a half years ago.
Part of it was the realisation of my own parents under-parenting (which I had just never really given much thought until I had my own children), and part of it is the absolute exhaustion of being a mum with no one to help out – no family, no friends. I have found the journey so hard, and I have often felt so completely spent, but still had to pick up and carry on day after day. I have a perfectionist streak and criticise myself constantly.
And of course, when your mind is not right, you don’t do the right things when it comes to eating and exercise. I seek solace in chocolate and wine and pick at food instead of making myself proper meals. The long term effect is vitamin deficiencies and tiredness.
So I need to clean house – mentally – in order to make this journey work. I have finished searching for weird things that might be wrong with me (I think this is partly a hangover from three years of miscarriages with no attributable medical cause ever found). I need to focus on making the steps to clean up my diet, but also on making steps into the dusty, crowded, dark and neglected warehouse of my brain and putting things in order. I’m not quite sure how I’m going to do that just yet.