Saturday, January 19, 2013

where the heck have you been!?

So... it's been a while since I posted on the blog. If you are still here, Thank You for hanging on and waiting for me. The last year, 6 months, 3 months have been a bit weird for me.

If you were paying attention in the summer of 2012 I posted that I had lumbar puncture (aka spinal tap) and the recovery from it was kicking my butt in a major way. A 3 day recovery turned into an almost 3 week recovery, leaving me completely helpless and sad. My Mom and Dad had taken the girls for the 3 days it was supposed to take me to recuperate, but when they came home it was quite clear that my headache wasn't going away. I pretty much packed up and moved home to my parents and spent the next 3 weeks sleeping, sitting, and floating around in their pool. I hung out with the kids as much as I could and then Mom, Dad and my Aunt B were there to take over when the headache got bad. The only way to combat a low pressure headache (from taking spinal fluid) is to lay flat, so off to bed I went. I had a leak in my spinal column where the doctors had taken the fluid sample from which is why the healing was taking so long.

I went into my neurologists office fully expecting an answer. Something that would explain these annoying headaches, a magic pill maybe that would solve the problem. My doctor went on and on, and finally just said, you are fine. Just like that. There was nothing odd in my sample, it was crystal clear, every enzyme, ph and level were right where they should be. I wanted to cry. Which seems odd considering he had just told me that I didn't have a tumour, or a aneurism, or ________. However his answer to my headache problems, wait for it, wait for it...

Lose weight.

Sounds simple doesn't it?

Well it's not.

At least not for me.

I left with the order that day to lose as much weight as I could and as fast as I could to see if the weight I was carrying really was the problem, or if I just needed a medication after all. He said if I couldn't lose it fast enough he would give me diet pills. I wasn't impressed.

1. I thought (that day) that he just didn't have any clue what to tell me, so he thought, I'll just tell the fat girl that she needs to lose weight. I always thought of blaming weight as a cop out excuse.

2. If I needed to lose weight there was NO way I was going to take diet pills. EVER. Are they not bad for you as well? Did he forget that I also have high blood pressure?

3. What the hell is as much as possible, as fast as you can?

So I went to see my dietician (the only good thing the neurologist did for me!) at the end of August told her about the test results and the diet pill suggestion and my absolute disgust of the idea and we went from there. I also left her office crying, feeling like a big fat failure (pun intended) We made plans to meet up the first week of October.

In the month of September I actually gained weight. The stress of needing to lose weight (as fast as I could) caused me to freak out and eat more. Partner that stress with Poppy starting school, and me suddenly being sad and confused about Ola's Down syndrome diagnosis (after 2 1/2 years!) September was a really bad month for me.

I met back at her office the first week of October and had a meltdown. I sobbed, and cried, and struggled to breathe. It was messy and awful and so so sad. She told me at that point that there wasn't any thing else she could really do for me. I knew what I needed to do, but there was so much personal stuff holding me back, weighing me down. She recommended that I go see a phycologist. When I hesitated and told her that I couldn't do that, she said I should check out an over eaters anonymous meeting. It was a low moment for me. Not the lowest... we are getting there.

I went home, and cried for 2 days.

I looked up the over eaters anonymous website, but I just couldn't do it. Over eating was not my problem. I couldn't picture myself in that meeting. It was deeper than that, it wasn't about the food, it was about the hole I was trying to fill.

I texted my friend Cynthia a picture at 11:15 pm in mid october of the handlebars of my bike. I was outside in the rain peddling my bike on my bike stand. I was sobbing after having an argument with Mark about exercise (or lack there of) I was so mad at him. I was mad in general. I set my timer on my phone for 15 minutes, and by 10 my head was pounding. I rode another 6 minutes and stormed back into the house and in to bed. I officially hit my low.

Those 15 minutes prompted me to make a change. For good.

The next morning I set up some "ground rules" for myself. I needed to set some realistic food boundaries for myself.

1. No more Starbucks or Tim Hortons in the car. If I was going to have a coffee I needed to be with a friend, sitting inside enjoying the coffee with a friend and a conversation. No friend = No coffee.

On October 22nd I got this email from my Dietician:

"I just received an email about this excellent program being available near you.  It is for people who know what they should be doing, but are aware that so many things get in the way that they never end up doing it.  Would you be interested in information about that?

Let me know if you’d like information.

Take care"

Umm.. yes please send me information about that!

She ended up sending me info about a course called Craving Change. I knew that I needed to go to this group/class/whatever you want to call it. I felt like I had a good base with my new rules, but I needed more.

I showed up to this meeting nervous and worried about being the fattest girl there. Scared to tell them my story.

There was 4 of us.

All different types of women. Mothers, and not. Married, and not. Working full time, and not.

We met once a week for 2 hours, for 4 weeks, and it was one of the best things I could have done for myself. We talked, we laughed, we cried, and I finally realized that I was not alone in trying to fill a void with food.

I didn't tell anyone but my Mom and Mark about these meetings. I kept them all to myself. Just for me. Just a visit with friends.

It has been just about three months since that night on my bike.

Things are different now.

I no longer stop in at Starbucks or Tim Hortons every day. I have been to Starbucks 4 times since October and have had great conversations each time. I actually enjoy my latte now, and I drink every last drop.

I have been to Tim Hortons twice, and sat with Poppy while she had a special treat and I have had tea.

I can eat a cookie/chip/piece of cake and not feel like I am the worst person on the planet now.

I still get headaches here and there, but who doesn't?

I learned that I was letting others control how I was living my life because it was easier to have others tell me what to do than decide for myself.

I have learned to say no.  I can say no to booking 3 appointments in the same week for Ola. I can say no, sorry I can't bring 2 dozen cookies to the Christmas Kindergarten lunch at school, I can just say no because I don't have to please everyone around me.

I learned what it was like to not make losing weight a New Years resolution!

I am learning that I really like being happy, and I am sad that I wasted so much time last year feeling sorry for myself.

I am learning that it's a really nice feeling when your best friends notice that your pants appear to be getting bigger!

Left: January 2012  Right: January 2013

Making positive changes in my health, have lead to positive and exciting changes in my personal life too. Things are falling into place, and I can't wait to share them with you!

The last thing I want to share with you is something I stumbled upon by accident last night and it feel like it describes where I am right this second.

It's time I get my body moving, which is something I have been able to avoid up til this point. I haven't tested my threshold in almost 3 months (the night on my bike) so I am eager to see if I can do 15 minutes without a headache yet.

Cross your fingers for me! Here we go!


Sherry said...

What an uplifting story! I can relate to this -- my sister had this issue for most of her life. I wish there had been a programme like you described...and the fact of knowing "you are not alone" -- I think that is one of the biggest roadblocks for all of us, in any situation. We fear that we are alone. When we recognize that we aren't and there is support it's amazing how far we can go.

I love that you have done this for yourself and that you continue to make changes -- including knowing that it is just fine to say "no".

I wish you much continued success and continued self love. And thanks by the way for that quote...that was something I needed to read this morning! xo

Amber Strocel said...

All my fingers are crossed! I am pulling for you.

Vintage Home said...

Well written & so open & honest. I know you to be a kind & talented wonderful Mom!
Blessings to you as you continue o this journey!

Mrs. Merriman said...

Love you :D xx

lorena said...

Fingers crossed for you! Thank you for sharing your story. :)

Poot & Boogie said...

@Sherry, Thank You for you kind words.

Poot & Boogie said...

Thanks everyone for the kindness!

Lisa Gordon said...

You are awesome!!!

The Informal Matriarch said...

Such a great post. I'm glad you wrote again and I'm glad things are going well for you.