Langhorne, PA

Ok, this is gonna be long. I'm 33 years old and both I and my mother (I think at least!) have either primary lymphedema or lipedema, but I believe for both of us it has progressed into lipo-lymphedema. I've had symptoms since puberty but it only really got bad within the last 10 years or so. My poor mother's had it bad for 30! I've felt sick for years - physically I had no energy. I could barely move from the couch most days. I was always tired, had to take a 2-hour nap every DAY, and couldn't make plans because I never knew when my energy would run out. I had dry skin. Sore muscles. HORRIBLE and debilitating period cramps. Awful headaches. Shortness of breath. Stomach issues. Foot cramps. You name it. Cosmetically, my hair was always oily, my skin was textured and filled with veins and cellulite. And MENTALLY! No one ever talks about that. But did you know that if your HEAD is clogged with toxic SLUDGE that it can cause depression or something??? Who knew?? I just thought everyone felt like this. I thought I was just being lazy. Because of course, my doctors just saw I was overweight and that's ALL they saw. 'Lose some weight' was all they ever said to me. Blood work was normal. I was on antidepressants. It must be MY fault I didn't have the energy to work at a job for more than 2 months. It must be MY fault I can't lose weight no matter how hard I try. It must be MY fault I'm depressed and exhausted all the time. Cut to a month ago. I stumbled on a youtube video for lymphatic drainage massage. And my life has turned upside down. After a few days of LDM and doing all the other self-care stuff I was supposed to - hydrotherapy, stretches, eating better - my health has done a 180 literally overnight. I woke up with ENERGY for the first time in 10 years. I woke up with excitement for the first time in maybe ever! I have lost 28 pounds since Oct 4 (today is December 17th) ALL from FINALLY treating (by myself!) a chronic illness that has been overlooked, underresearched, and viewed as 'not that big a deal' by doctors all because it happens primarily in women. And yall I'm an EXPERT at this stuff now. I think I know more than most doctors learn about the lymphatic system in all their years of medical school. I Can feel the passageways and clogs not only under my skin but others! This has been, no overstatement, an absolute miracle. All I want to do now is help spread awareness. It's not right that I'm 33 and have been suffering my whole life with something insanely treatable. It's just not right! I'm happy and optimistic for the first time in my life. I don't know what the future holds, but thanks to learning about this, I'm ready for it for the first time in maybe forever. I wish you all good luck with your recovery. And that you be as loud about it as you can! Love, Arielle