Sunday, June 13, 2010

Which Are You Feeding? (and an update)

I weighed in at work Saturday morning, and I’m more or less holding steady. Part of me is happy about that, since I had some binge-y moments this week. In reflection on those moments, I know how it happened. On Tuesdays, I eat dinner at work (4:30 PM) in order to make my schedule work for a committee meeting each week. I don’t like this, since I usually finish lunch around 12:30. 4:30 is a little too soon for a full meal. By 10:00, I’m starving and shoveling in whatever's not nailed down (and that’s even with snacks at the meeting). So now, I’ve decided that I will simply have to stop and pick up something on the way to the meeting and eat it then. I hate the idea of spending money instead of taking something from home, but you do what you have to.

And this week, I tended to listen to my "head hunger" instead of my "body hunger." I wasn't really caring whether or not I was physically hungry, but wanting to satisfy my emotional hunger instead. I was letting my mind outfox my body. That was especially evident on Thursday night. I was perfectly physically satisfied, but mentally and emotionally starved for something. I fed the wrong need; this hunger didn’t need physical food but some sort of affirmation or reassurance.

Amazing, huh? After four years, I still fall victim to the old ways of thinking. I’m just proof that it can still happen to anyone. Even with knowing all those good habits to follow, my old brain followed the wrong internal circuitry. So this week, I will be taking extra precautions to listen to the right signals.


I went to the doctor on Thursday for consultation and answers. I mentioned that I do have some of the signs they mention for hypothyroidism or Hashimoto's, but not all. If I am fatigued or sluggish, it's only when I've gone until I just cannot go anymore and then crash! If nothing else, I have become a perpetual motion machine. Sitting still kills me. I also don't have a "sluggish system" – nosireebob, 50 grams of fiber a day pretty much helps with that. Pale, dry skin? I give white a bad name, folks. And dry, well, yeah, but you know, mostly seasonal and I'm older now. I understand.....

But I do have the low tolerance for cold temperatures. The A/C is on because it was 90+ degrees outside and it's starting to get humid. And usually I'm wearing a cardigan anyway (surprisingly, I'm not at this very moment, but I am cool). I sleep in yoga pants and a tee (either long or short sleeved) year round. Wasn't that long ago that I slept in a short-sleeved tee and shorts, and broke out the longer pants just for winter. I have two pairs of flannel pj's that get quite the workout each winter. In the winter, as I told Dr. H, I literally back my rump up toward the gas heater and get my butt warm. For some bizarre reason, my butt is always cold in the winter. Can't explain it.

Unexplained weight gain? Really, Doc, just read my blog posts since February of this year. Nearly every week is a lament about that. I have been consistently stuck about 5 pounds above goal for months now. There's a reason and that's part of what all this is about.

Irregular cycle? Well, DUH! That's what set this whole process in motion back in 2006. Irregular cycles have been sending me to doctors for years. I should have seen one in my teens -- not for irregularity in timing (oh no, that was no problem), it was all the pain and other stuff. It took me until age 27 to realize that all those things were not normal. And since 36, I haven't been "normal" in any regard to that.

Shoulder pain and stiffness? Just ask my chiro. The adjustments help but within days, it's back to the pain, and it's not just in the joints of the shoulder. It's my neck and upper back. My trainer has a few moves put into my routine to help me develop better shoulder/upper back strength so that the poor traps (i.e., the ropes that go from neck across the top of the shoulders) don't tote the whole load..... best of luck there. I still hurt. A large chunk of the excess skin that needs to be removed is all up front -- chest, midriff, the "I had all 19 of the Duggar kids at once" abdomen. Not to mention the backfat and now-practically-nonexistent derierre. Oh, and God no, let’s not forget the saddlebags that are my arms and upper legs (to the knee), and even a small portion above the calf.

These things are what have sent me looking for answers. I know, beyond any doubt, they're connected. I need to know what just what my body is trying to tell me. That need had me once again on a doctor's table. They checked my heart rate twice, once by hand and once with an oxygen saturation monitor. Same number both times: 56. (And great oxygen absorption, too, at 99%). The heart rate is low – for most people, but for me, it was considered "athletic" range. ME? ATHLETE? I still chortle. They were pleased.

He seems to think most of the issues may be interconnected, and the overall thing is the HUGE weight loss. I also said, "Oh, before I forget, by the way, I meant to show you this last time...." I have a cyst on my shoulder. I hadn't really paid much attention to it but I noticed it about 18 months ago, I guess? It doesn't seem to have grown or anything but who knows... He looked at it and said, "Oh, probably nothing, but just keep an eye on it." I said, "Do you need to do a biopsy or anything?" His response, "Eh... I don't know."

He went to his office and came back and said, "You know.... I'm going to go ahead and have (Nurse) draw up the orders for a full thyroid panel anyway. I don't think there's anything there, but I agree. Answers are helpful. And uh, depending on what the tests say, I may do an incisional biopsy of this cyst."

If ever there were a loaded word in the English language, biopsy is surely one of them. It sounds odd, but I am so glad that work was busy on Thursday afternoon and all day Friday, insanely busy as it was. And I’m thankful that I had things to keep me occupied this weekend. If I hadn’t been totally occupied, I might have simply wasted hours thinking about the “what ifs.” As it is, I’m sitting here on Sunday afternoon, and the word is a little less scary. I’m not as freaked out as I would have been had I dwelt on it for long ... but I’m also not out on my lawn cheerfully asking, "Gimme a B!!" either. I’m waiting, patiently, and trusting that in the Master Plan, all will be well. Julian of Norwich’s very famous quote comes to mind: "All will be well. And all will be well. And all shall be exceedingly well."

So I’m waiting to see what happens, in a lot more faith and trust than I am used to exhibiting. I’m not saying that I’m not worried or scared or concerned, but I’m not going to dwell on it. It will be what is meant to be. And all will be well, in every area where I wish to be healthy.


bngsmom said...

Just curious. Do you still have your gallbladder? The neck and back pain had me wondering. And if you do, you know, lots of weight loss causes stones. Just a thought.

nettiemac said...

No - mine was removed in 2003. My first attack was on Easter Sunday, and my last was end of August (then had surgery right after Labor Day). Trust me, I lost at least a good 15-20 pounds that summer, because all I ate were salads and "light" fare. That, and my digestion was all messed up.

Oddly enough, even when I was at my heaviest after the surgery, I found I couldn't eat french fries afterward! Before the surgery - the supersize pack of McD's fries was just right. After - gimme the Happy Meal ones (and even then couldn't eat them all). I'm still not a big fries fan now, just remembering how they upset my tummy after the surgery....

But good thought....