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Learning to Listen to my Body

Mikayla, age 23, Pennsylvania

As someone who has always struggled with health anxiety, it was hard to find a diagnosis from doctors. 

Once I hit my young teen years, I started experiencing dizziness and blurred vision (especially when moving from a seated to standing position). At the time, I thought this was normal until I started experiencing heart palpitations and found it harder to exercise. My mom took me to a bunch of doctors who ran a bunch of tests (which all looked quite normal). I often left with the classic "it's probably just anxiety" or "it could just be your menstrual cycle getting ready to start." It wasn't until I found a great doctor who was experienced in POTS that really took the time to dig deep into my symptoms until I got the infamous tilt table test. Seven years ago I finally got the diagnosis of POTS.

Something I learned from having POTS is that it is so important to listen to your body and advocate for your own health. Some days are great, while others are bad. This is something I had to accept and learn to cope with over time. The hardest thing I still struggle with is explaining to others what POTS is. Since POTS is an invisible syndrome, many people do not understand when you do not feel up to going out, or even doing simple tasks. It is important to raise awareness of POTS both in and out of doctors offices. I am thankful for this amazing Standing Up to POTS Instagram page and I hope to help others dealing with the same symptoms and let them know that they are not alone. <3

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