Saturday, January 21, 2012

And now I begin

I made a decision that 2012 was going to be the year that I would make life-altering changes.  I know ... everyone says that at the beginning of the year and they also say they really, really mean it.  Not to sound too cliche but I really do.  I have been struggling with my weight my entire life, quite literally, and it's killing me.  So, fresh year, fresh blog (I've done two others).  This place where I write is mainly for me, but also for you to find someone else that is just like you or that wants to share their story so openly or maybe that you can get something small from.  It will help me heal, and maybe you, too.  The things I need to share on here are deeply personal, highly sensitive and straight from my heart.  And I am here because I want to be better and feel better.  So I kindly ask anyone wanting to post a comment to be cognisant of that and just to be respectful. 

To just jump right in there and begin, the other day I got on the scale and it read:  406.8

And that was the moment that cemented my life - either in the grave or on the road to health.  I weighed 406.8 pounds.  Oh. My. God.  Last year in 2011, I turned 40, had cancer, had my heart broken by a man who I was going to marry all while working full time and going to college full time.  I have type 2 diabetes, sleep apnea, so many different physical pains of being heavy and I'm just done.  Stick a fork in me ... I'm done.  Who I am inside is not who I portray on the outside.  I'm a skinny girl inside who wants to run down the road and just laugh because it feels good. 

I have tried so hard over the years to lose weight with different programs, like Weight Watchers, Jenny Craig, Overeaters Anonymous (OA), etc.  I have lost a lot of weight, the most being about 100 pounds in OA, but then it worked until it didn't work.  And then I got to a point where, while I cared what happened to me, I lost the fight.  I'm a scrappy little fighter so it was just like taking the wind out of my sails.  I ate more, exercised less.  I have been through major events in my life and survived, like being abused as a child at the hands of my mother and being raped when I was 13.  I know I will go into all of that at a later time, but this is just a snapshot for now.  I work in the counseling department of a very big high school, love what I do, but I also have been feeling like I'm lucky to wake up each day, that I survived the night without taking my last breath.  Trust me, I'm not trying to be morbid.  Just that I'm scared for my health.

As drastic as my health situation has been with not only significant weight, the sleep apnea, but all the other issues I haven't mentioned and I have come to realize I need to take drastic measures to save my life.  I have tried many, many less drastic things and here I sit at over 400 pounds.  I can't begin to tell you how humiliating that is for me.  I never saw this coming, I just really didn't.  I'm now one of "those" people that gets stared at when walking in the mall, who wears tight clothes because nothing fits, sweating when no one is sweating around you and whatever other image one congers up when describing a super morbidly obese person.  So, I made the decision to seek medical attention and am going to begin Optifast soon.  Through Kaiser Permanente, my medical provider, they have a medically supervised program that is pretty intensive in the work they do with clients, whether it is all the medical monitoring, the counseling, the year of nutrition and physical trainer services after reaching maintenance and just getting down to why we choose food to cope with life.  This is very drastic, I recognize that.  But, I am in a very drastic place with my health.  After the first week of the program, diabetics get weaned off their meds.  I will feel more energetic and healthier as the weight comes off.  I don't have blinders on, but am in a very serious place with my health. 

I have gone to the first session where we learn about the program to make absolutely sure this is something we really want to do.  The next step is I will be doing blood work and an EKG on January 30th to ensure I'm okay to proceed.  I actually am very excited that I have made this decision and am looking forward to whatever comes my way.  I have committed to God that I am going to put my whole heart and soul into this, wherever that takes me.  Sure, I'm scared, but I'm also hopeful and that isn't something I have experienced in regards to my health in a very long time.  So I will be sharing my journey here as I walk it.  Scary and exciting at the same time.


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