So today is my last day to be 20 something. I have had mixed feelings about turning 30 for a few months now. Aging gracefully has always been one of my goals, and by that I mean not running to the drugstore to hoard every anti-aging do dad i can find or coloring the few white hairs I have back to my dark brown. I could be sad that my still youthful 20's are gone. I could be angry I haven't experienced more of life. 2 of my goals to accomplish before turning 30 were to see another country and to own my own horse. I have failed miserably at both,lol.
I have chosen to be grateful. I am grateful that I am still here and that I have the chance to look forward to my 30th birthday tomorrow. The truth is, had it not been for the Lord I may have been forever 29. Not a whole lot of people know the whole story of my new found diabetic lifestyle. I think today is the best day to share it.
I have been warned my whole life to watch what I eat because basically my whole family is/was diabetic. And like a lot of diabetics, denial was their comfort and they continued to eat like there was never an issue. I was once told (in not so loving ways) that my weight was always gonna be an issue for me. I hated hearing that and denied it, but it is true. Some years I was scary thin with no muscle tone, some years I look healthy but pudgy. For the past 9 years I had been grotesquely overweight because my husband always tells me I'm beautiful, denied my being fat and food was just, fun. I thought i ate well- I don't drink soda, eat whole grains, love my veggies and fruit.... but it was not enough. Or maybe too much???
In May 2010 I began getting that feeling...like diabetes was lurking closer to me. That still small voice was getting louder with every run to Dairy Queen . But I had made it this far...surely I would make to at least 50 before it became a problem! By June I was having symptoms....migraines almost every everyday, so tired that living was just beginning to feel like it was too much,I miraculously lost 10lbs in 7 days no matter how nice a day it was i was always so HOT, and the weirdest/scariest symptoms of all were extreme itchiness and every time i began to stress out or yell i began bleeding---like i was having my period. That terrified me- especially because my aunt and my stepfather were fighting cancer and I had just recently lost my father-in-law to cancer. I scheduled a pap and it later came back normal. I explained to my Dr. my cancer fears and i was assured that wasn't the issue-- .I, like so many other women before me, was written off as hormonal ( which is doctor speak for ' I have no idea what's wrong with you, so rather than lose my god like status i will make you think you are inept at knowing your own body.')due to my just having given birth to my 4th baby in August. I don't buy it, but I accept it for the time being.
By the end of the month I am in full party planning mode for my eldest child's 7th birthday....but there would be a twist this year. It started when she began begging me for a pool- something i was not too keen on,but we relented and my mom gave us hers, only she forgot to give us the pump. I was unusually thirsty heading to her house to get the pump and stopped off for a soda ( which I've never been big on anyway). Within 15 minutes I was there and stopped in my mom's room to let her know i was there. For no apparent reason at all she asked to take my blood sugar- which again, I was not keen on. I DO NOT like needles of any kind or size, but I know my mom. It was best to just do it to get her off my back. *prick* ow. waiting...waiting...waiting...waiting....5:00. Why is she looking at me like that? I ask if she's ok.
Her mouth is agape and she's staring at me like I'm gonna explode. "What???" i ask. "Oh my God, my poor baby". OK, now I am getting annoyed. When is thing gonna give me a number and why is she looking at me like that??? Apparently this thing was not telling me it was 5:00, but rather that my blood sugar was 500! The next few hours become a blur of tears, serious denial, a fight between me and my mom over her not letting me drive home and my step dad insisting I go to the ER. I feel fine. I don't believe this is happening. I don't wanna hear it. I just came for a pump and I'm leaving a diabetic?!? ME- who watched every one's junk food intake, makes food from scratch and lives to eat whole grain and natural foods. At the ER i learn i am 232 lbs of denial and evil genetics. My sugar has come down a measly 30 points and I am refusing any kind of insulin. After a few hours of sitting, being poked some more and tears I come home to a husband who barely got the heads up as to what was going on before i left for the ER. I walk in an he hugs me with a pathetically weak smile and his best attempt at being reassuring. All I know is genetics suck.I begin seeing Drs., or at least Spencer's version of such. The one is a physician's assistant who is gentle in telling me both what I already know and don't wanna hear. Thankfully though he tells me i can possibly hold this at bay or even change it with diet and exercise. He is kind but I feel hopeless. I stare at the bottle of my new meds( and if u know me at all I also hate Drs.,and medication) and just cry. I sit at breakfast with my family and just cry. I can't do this. I won't do this- if I do it makes it real. John points out whether or not i take this pill it IS real. I can either do what's right like I am aptly programmed to do, or I can deny like every other diabetic in my family. Is living "free and normal" worth losing limbs, heart disease, going blind or dialysis?? But what about Caia? I still nurse her! I cant wean her yet, it's not fair- the others got 2 ½ yrs!She's only 9 months old. I look at my kids who are looking back at me. My son who takes an allergy pill every nite goes," Don't worry mom, you are a big lady. Take your medicine". Sierra asks,"Don't you wanna see me forever?" Brianna goes, " yeah, cuz you'd look funny with no awms. How'd u hug us?" i swallow it crying.it's real now. no turning back. I am a diabetic.
6 days later i go to my appt. with an actual Dr. This fool is easily 50 lbs heavier than me- he can't even bring his leg up to his knee when he sits. He looks at my scores, which with the exception of my morning fasting scores are all below normal or within normal range, and tells me it's not good. I could stand to lose 50lbs, he ups my dosage despite my protests and suggests the easiest route would be to just take insulin because I am too far gone for diet and exercise to help me any. I angrily inform him I have never been one to take the easy route, I refuse the higher dosage and i storm out to the car where i begin bawling again. i can't take much more. I've heard my mother,grandmother, (heard of ) my aunt and grandfather all say how hopeless and hard this disease is. I am so angry I could scream. I've watched what John has warned me against happen to my family and I refuse to go down without a fight. i am gonna fight this thing for every diabetic that has or has wanted to give up because it was too hard, or they had a crappy Dr. and no support team- but mostly i was doing it for my family. I love my babies and husband more then life itself and I'll be darned if i die a victim.
In August I joined the local gym. Can't beat $25 a month and I go EVERYDAY for at least an hour. Big on cardio, trying to avoid weights. u want me to lose 50 lbs huh tubby? just watch me on this treadmill.....the look on your bloated face is worth every asthma attack i may endure!! I also change Drs. and set up to see a new one in September. By the end of the month I was 222lbs.
September 2010The new Dr is nice but kinda emotionless- very matter of fact. He agrees I need to lose weight but disagrees with the insulin call....That's a last resort thing. He would like to see me below 200lbs by December. Will do doc. I join 2 separate Zumba classes and a kick boxing class. My week looks like this:Monday: home school 10am-3pm/gym 4pm-5pm/kickboxing 5pm-6pmTuesday: home school 10am-3pm/ gym 4pm-5pm/zumba I 6pm-7pm/Zumba II 7pm - 8pmWednesday:home school 10am-3pm/gym 4pm-5pm/Thursday:home school 10am-3pm/gym 4pm-5pm/zumba I 6pm-7pm/Zumba II 7pm - 8pmFriday:home school 10am-3pm/gym 4pm-5pm/Saturday: either gym from 12pm-1pm or home with familySunday: restI work out quite a bit, and the weird thing is I don;t lose weight...but i do lose inches....1-2 to be exact in my hips,waist and arms.....October 2010looks much like above except i lose 10 more lbs bringing me to 212. This is gonna take forever, but I can't stop now!November 2010I am continuing my workout regime but I know Thanksgiving is coming. People always worry about over eating and weight gain, but not me- I never cared anyway. Now I do. Between the end of October and Thanksgiving I have lost another 5 lbs! 207lbs,I remember when saying that out loud was a bad thing. How bad was my weight that it's now an achievement?!! I prepare Thanksgiving as I always have, but my plate is a salad plate, not a regular dinner one. On it I forgo the skin, and heap the veggies and 2 slices of turkey. Dessert is my sugar free french vanilla creamer in some skim milk with a sugar free chocolate chip cookie. yummy.The next day I weigh myself: 1 lbs gone!!! Hello 206, the last time I saw you I had just delivered Sierra....... I feel like I'll never be below 200 like the doc wants...i mean December 8th is so close and that's my next appointment......
December 2010I get to the Drs and as i get up the scale everyone is telling me how wonderful i look. Just to drive my seriousness home i wore a workout outfit so i could get to the kickboxing class afterwards. i go to read the scale but the dang thing is in kg's.....they look at it in disbelief and ask me to step off. I worry so i slip of my sneakers. back on the number is less. I ask what it is in lbs. they push a button and it pops up: 196!!! I haven't been 196 since i graduated high school almost 15 yrs ago!! The Dr is so impressed and pleased he prints out a chart of my past weights and show just how far I've come. He all but hi fives me,lol. We set the goal now for 180lbs by mid April. i am fairly dancing into my kickboxing class.January 2011John's work schedule changes to 7 straight days of 12 hour shifts, 5pm to 5am, then a week off. This screws up my workouts. The weeks he works he sleeps til 1 while i try to run the house and teach school, then i have to be out the door by 2 and choose between running errands or working out because he leaves at 4:30. Oh the joy of sharing 1 vehicle and not having a babysitter anymore....but, on his weeks off i kill it to make up for my sloppy performance the week before. I am 193 by the end of this month.
February 2011I am down 7 inches on my waist and 3 lbs more. I have no plans to slow down or stop....I have even gone so far as to purchase an Ab Circle and the PS3 game Zumba Move so that when I'm stuck at home i have no excuses. I hope to reach my goal of 180 by the end of March...I'm kind of an optimist anymore,lol.Well, I didn't quite reach that goal, but I am close. As a woman, I am gonna break 2 cardinal rules at the same time: reveal my age and weight at the same time. Tomorrow I will be 30 years old and 188lbs. I'm not ashamed, especially considering where I have come from. I haven't been this weight since I graduated high school!This is why I am grateful. I could be dead right now. My dad was diabetic and slipped into a coma after having his sugar hit somewhere between 500 and 700. He's gone now. Now i can see why the hospital staff were in shock that my symptoms weren't worse and that I was able to walk and talk at 500. Who knows what my stress bleeding meant?! I had always felt like I was gonna die young and I told my husband and mom that. They hated hearing it, but it was such a strong feeling I didn't want it to be a shock if they found me dead. I don' t feel that anymore. God gave me my life back for my birthday.