Trust Your Gut is a series of stories about real people with weight issues, and complications arising from those issues. It will explain what the person is facing, what their options are, what they have decided to do to take action, and why they chose the path they are on. Each person’s story will be based on truth, so it won’t all be happy, but it will be real. The goal of this series is to get people talking about options that are available for people who have weight issues, on either end of the scale. If you would like to contribute to this series, there is a contact form linked on my Home page for this blog. I know there are people out there that want to help people like them; as I do.
The names here may or may not reflect the person’s real name. If someone wants to remain unknown, we will choose a different name for that person’s story. The goal is to help people, and anonymity is a valid personal choice for contributors. I will use a person’s name only if they give permission to do so.
This week I am pleased to share another of my own stories.
Here is Trust Your Gut: Tish’s Story; Part 13
I am retaining water. The scale is climbing. I am still fighting a sinus infection and on antibiotics. I am not scared to eat this week (I see the results of that on the scale) because my insulin and my body have started working together again. That being said, I still do not feel well. I am getting my sugars back under control, which is a good sign. I am still experiencing sinus pain and pressure, my face is still puffy, and the headache is still bouncing around with an aura or two just to keep things interesting.
Where am I headed with my story this week? Back to the doctor. My sugars were slipping out of control for a while now, and I was avoiding a trip to the doctor because I thought I was doing something wrong. I was not eating the healthiest choices and was blaming myself for the sugars being high.
People talk about that little voice in your head. The negative one. The one that whispers so quietly you aren’t even really sure if it is in there, but it is. It’s the one that says my sugars are high because I am failing at my diet and the doctor isn’t going to want to help me anymore because I am not doing my part to take care of myself. It is whispering that it is OK to try that ice cream because it is a new flavour and once you try it, you won’t wonder about it anymore. Don’t get me wrong, treats are OK, but they aren’t meant to be an everyday thing in the life of a person with type 2 diabetes. If I didn’t give in a little once in a while, I would give up and stop caring altogether, and that is not the path I want to walk on.
Another little voice is nagging in the back of my head, telling me that there might be something REALLY wrong. Like when my knee was infected and my life had to go on pause in order to fight that infection and get better. My knee still hurts, a little, from time to time. It is not a muscle pain from any exercise related injury. It still feels like jello sometimes. You want to know the scariest part about that whole experience? They still don’t know why or how it became infected in the first place.
I did what the doctors said. I stayed as still as possible. I got better. I wore bandages for two months on my calves to reduce the fluid in them so I could be fitted for compression stockings. They work really well because I force myself to exercise. I have a job where I need to sit for most of my day. I listen to music in my down time, and I dance in my chair. I have a stool at my desk to elevate my feet to keep the fluids from pooling in my calves. I put up my feet and bounce in my chair as much as I can. Sitting still in a chair all day is not good for anyone. So I move around to keep the blood pumping, and the music does keep me in a decent mood at work.
I have missed Zumba a lot the last few weeks. With a migraine, I didn’t go. With the sinus infection, I didn’t go. I have decided that I need to revisit the doctor I saw last week. I am on day 8 of the antibiotics. Day 10 is on a Friday. The doctor is only at the clinic Monday to Friday. Saturday is not a day I want to spend waiting to see a doctor. I am not getting better fast enough. I need more help.
When you have issues with weight, it is easier to live in denial about the state of your health than to go to the doctor about it. It is a vicious cycle. Eat sleep avoid living and just exist. If you are morbidly obese like I am (I am fighting for the day I can stop having to use that description for my weight) then it is just that. It is so much easier to not care and eat whatever you want and be miserable on the inside, faking the happy person you appear to be on the outside.
Because it is all a huge cover up. Acting. Pretending everything is OK. It’s not. Anybody that has issues with their weight like I do is not happy. Not truly. And if you are listening to that little voice and believing it when it says that the junk food will make you happy, you are letting that little voice in your head lie to you. And you are falling for it every time you listen.
If you are like me, there are discussions that happen with more than one voice in your head at the same time. (That will be a good thing when I am hearing the characters from my book talk in my head when I write). I spend more time talking myself out of things than I do talking myself into them. Because it is easier to do the thing that is not the best choice most of the time. Easier does not mean better. If you want something, you have to work for it. It is easy to be fat. It is hard work to be healthy.
And then the littlest voice of all whispers that I will still need surgery when I lose the weight because I will have flaps of skin left hanging around. It is a fight I have been having inside of my head for years. That one little voice has been working against my wishes to be a healthier person. It is so quiet, and then it sneaks in and gets a little pushier and louder and then I realize I went off plan again. I tell myself that I won’t feel guilty about it, but I have layers and layers of guilt protecting my body from the healthier person that I could be.
I have also had a former doctor treat me like a hypochondriac. I stopped wanting to go to the doctor because he wasn’t listening to me, or taking anything I was telling him seriously. When he moved away I was lucky that my next doctor was one of the good ones. He is an advocate for people that try to improve their health, and he was supporting me in my efforts to become a healthier person.
Last month a letter came in the mail. My current doctor is moving away too. I am afraid that the next doctor will be another bad one. So scared that I have been avoiding making an appointment to go, and avoiding my regular blood work as I know the numbers are not going to be good. Not at all. I am secretly terrified of what is going to happen when I get another doctor. That is not how I want to live my life.
So, I am going to the clinic in the morning before work tomorrow. Not where my new doctor will be, but to the one in the mall where I work. He diagnosed the sinus infection, and he saw me a little more than a week ago. I need to feel like trying again. So I am going to ask for more help. Because what I am doing now isn’t working, and it is time to try something different. I want to be better. I want to get back to living my life, not just merely surviving it. It is hard to go back to the doctor because I am scared that I will be told to give the antibiotics more time. Or that he will prescribe the same ones for a longer time. That is a part of the reason the other doctor thought I was a hypochondriac. He thought everything that was wrong with me was because of my weight. He made me doubt myself, and that is why I am having such a hard time with all of this.
My gut tells me that the antibiotics aren’t working. Tomorrow I will let the doctor know what I think, and I hope that he will help me find another way to feel better. I hope that a week from now I am back to prep cooking, and Zumba, and feeling like trying to be that healthier person I want to become, again.
Trust Your Gut.