Hello! First off, I just want to say that my brain has resumed normal functions after yesterday’s full-on frazzled state. I wrote this blog and went for a jog/walk, and that was all I did yesterday. I just could not concentrate on anything. Today, I’m back on track, and I’d like to talk more about my health.
I did hit the 25-pound mark today. I am 15 pounds away from my first goal, which is to lose the weight I gained since I moved in with my mom. On the exercise front, today I walked a little further than usual, and I have noticed that it is taking less time for me to catch my breath after jogging. It is also starting to feel like I actually have muscles in my legs and stomach. Woo! I have to remember that progress is slow. I like instant gratification, and I have NO patience, so I have to keep in mind that this is going to take a while. Making little goals helps a lot.
I did have one problem during the exercise today, and that was my right knee. My autoimmune condition (called GPA for short) has given me arthritis since my mid-20s. It is the worst in my knees, and if I step just right, it feels like my kneecap is going to snap in half. I am hoping that losing weight will help relieve the pain in my knees. But I am tired of using my bad knees as an excuse to not exercise.
Oh! And I also noticed that I am having the URGE to exercise! I can’t believe it. I hope that the urge to exercise takes the place of the urge to eat. Wouldn’t that be so great?
Speaking of eating, I have been dieting for three weeks now. Now, some folks might be a bit concerned about the kind of diet I’m on, and I totally understand. I am now eating one meal a day: dinner. I was eating two meals a day — lunch and dinner — but I’ve decided that I was eating way too many calories with two meals. When my cat died, I did not feel like eating anything at all, and that started the diet for me. In the three weeks since then, I’ve only eaten something at lunch three times: half a grilled chicken sandwich (light dinner that night), a bowl of peaches and two pieces of toast. I ate because I was feeling blah, so yeah, I will definitely eat something if I think I really need to.
But it’s been working. I have been eating less at dinner too. I would eat lunch, dinner and so many snacks that I really just felt like I had to take an extreme plunge to actually stick to dieting. I still can’t believe I have been sticking to it. So crazy. But 25 pounds (10 of those in those three weeks)!
Moving on, some folks know that I have been self-isolating since March 19. In that time, I’ve gone out five times, three of which were to the vet. Because people won’t do such a simple thing as wear a mask, I can’t go anywhere. It’s so frustrating. I am going insane from the lack of human interaction. Some folks may be wondering why I am so scared of getting COVID-19. Well, I am not only at high risk, I am at VERY high risk. My autoimmune condition (GPA) is a form of vasculitis — and while I know not everything is known about COVID-19 and information is changing all the time — from what I have read, COVID-19 affects the blood vessels. Well, gee golly, so does vasculitis. You heard of COVID toes? I had that when I was in the hospital before being diagnosed with GPA. COVID also affects the kidneys. Guess what I have? Terrible kidneys due to GPA. I feel like getting COVID-19 would be like GPA squared, and I do not think I would survive it.
Quick recap of a blog entry I did the other day ICYMI: I was diagnosed at age 19 with GPA (called Wegener’s Granulomatosis at the time), and I almost died after a year of crazy seemingly unrelated symptoms. Well, I apparently didn’t learn anything from that, because I still wait and wait and wait until the last minute to go to the doctor if I have medical issues.
Case in point: I had gall bladder issues for SEVEN years, then had to have emergency surgery to get it removed. The symptoms were mild at first, then just got worse and worse over the years. I attributed it to heartburn or indigestion. Yeah, that was dumb. The last couple years I had problems, I had to sleep sitting up on the couch. I definitely should have gone before the point it became an emergency, but I was poor and knew I wouldn’t be able to afford the bills, even with insurance. The gall bladder surgery was, I believe, $12,000. The insurance paid a lot of it, but because the health care in this country really likes to screw you over, I got separate bills from five entities, and it took me four years to pay it all off. Pro life tip: If you have medical bills that are just too high to pay, first, ask for an itemized bill. A lot of times the costs will be reduced. Second, you can set up a payment plan (which is what I did thanks to this tip from my brother), and they cannot charge interest or anything. I set up four payment plans at $20 a month for three and $40 for one. (The fifth bill I paid in full when I got it.)
This next bit may be somewhat TMI for some, but it’s part of my health. I am really struggling with this particular health issue and have been for several years now. I am going through menopause. I am 37. Yes, that’s young, but my family has a history of it. Well, apparently, doctors everywhere think that’s too young for menopause, and none of them has helped me. So, I have been having some really, really rough times. My mood swings are all over the place; it used to be that I would have PMS one day, then the next day my period would start. Nope. No more. Everything is unpredictable. My period starts whenever it feels like. I’ve been skipping months too. It drains me the day before I start and the day I start to the point where I’ve called in sick to work before.
I am in pain all the time because I am pretty sure I have something going on down there, but who knows what, because no doctor will do anything about it. I had one doctor who said I needed more fiber. She didn’t do any tests or anything. She just decided I needed to poop. NO. NO. NO. I really wish doctors would listen. I worry all the time about this, mainly because my mom had to have an emergency hysterectomy in her early 40s, and she almost died. Other family members have also had issues and surgery related to their female organs. Attention doctors: LISTEN TO YOUR PATIENTS. I cannot afford to go to 18 different doctors before finding one who will listen.
I feel like I should end on a positive note. So, here’s my favorite one-liner: A guy walks into a bar and say “ow!” Thank you, thank you. Until next time!