The One Where I Say Good-bye to Health Woes

The last time I wrote, I’d just found out that my breast lump was just a cyst. AMEN TO THAT.

Since then, I went and hiked the tallest mountain I’d hiked yet. It wasn’t a hard trail, but the altitude and the things it does to my body made it hard. I get altitude sickness. Because of course I fucking do. I get every other weird assed ailment possible so why not this one, too? I don’t know what to do about it. I do know that I need to find a way to force myself to drink more water as I hike up the mountain, despite my feeling that I’m doing a good job of drinking water I am not. I need to snack more as I go up. Stopping at the saddle, just 500 feet short of the summit, did me in. If I’d just kept hiking I would have made it to the top. But stopping and letting it all catch up with me caused extreme dizziness and nausea to hit. I didn’t want to lose my balance on the last bit of up that was steeper and I didn’t want to push the nausea as I’m not supposed to throw up after my surgery. So….great.

The hike was lovely and now that I’m over a week removed from it I’m super glad I did it but at the time I was just mad. I felt like shit and my body hurt and I felt like I had no business doing it and even said “Why did I think I could do this?!” and everyone looked at me and said “Well…you did do it sooooo….what’s the issue?” I hate it when everyone just doesn’t let me be illogical and unreasonable. It’s so rude.

I was afraid to eat once we got to the post hike grub but a cheeseburger was exactly what my body needed and I inhaled that thing and then felt so much better. Behold the power of the cheeseburger!

And I’ve not done much in the way of activity since. I did some hallway walks. I did the gym once. But I’m committing to doing both of those much more often. The heat is getting higher here so I doubt I’ll be doing neighborhood walks for a bit but I can swim laps in the pool and do things like that in between hikes and gym.

On Friday I had the cyst aspirated. They did it with an ultrasound so they could ensure they got all the fluid out and let me tell you that was pretty dang cool to watch. I saw the needle go in to numb my breast and the cyst, which was the most painful part. And it made me queasy. Likely since I was watching it and feeling it. But then watching the needle go in and start to drain the cyst, seeing the cyst start to shrink smaller and smaller until it just no longer existed was awesome.  The bonus is that the fluid that was in the cyst didn’t have any blood in it, they even showed me that and it was awesome and gross. Like, that just came out of my breast!! But the lack of any blood meant that it was simply a cyst and no more testing or concern was involved. They just tossed it into the trash and that was that.

Later that night, though, my boob hurt like hell. It was tender and uncomfortable. I wasn’t anticipating that. But it recovered. It still has a bruise but it’s not sore anymore.

And with that, my current state of health is HEALTHY AND GOOD AMEN.

Tonight I am doing meal prep for the week and getting back on that train. I will lost 15 pounds and that is final. I’m making some nicely seasoned chicken breasts, some sauteed red peppers and zucchini, oven roasting some brussels sprouts with red onion and bacon, cleaning and cutting up some fruit for snacks, and making my bacon fat deviled eggs to breakfast. Solid plan. Solid menu. I’m a fan.

I also have become obsessed with Hippeas snacks. I like to feel like I’m snacking so it makes my heart happy to still have that while knowing that my snack is healthy. It’s a win win!! Woo!

My boyfriend has started eating less and running more, as if he needs to. But he’s doing it for me. So I’m not in this alone. And I love him for that and that’s gonna motivate me to really be actually motivated this time. Because dammit, I need to be motivated this time!

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Imaginary Converstations

I’m riled up today. I’ll get to that in a moment. For now, let’s do a quick catch-up:

  • I did an upper GI test last week that revealed that my surgery has not failed, which is awesome news! It’s just a wee bit on the tight side, which is good so it lasts for a good long while, and my esophagus is tiny so I just need to take smaller bites, chew more, etc. while also making sure my bathroom habits are regular and staying ahead of that instead of allowing gas and constipation to build up. Woo!
  • I’m down 3.2 pounds since February. Not the almost 10 I should be down by now but I’ll take it and run with it. But because we both have a lot going on we’ve decided to not do the challenge any longer. I think that’s for the best, really. But I’m going to continue on my own. Which is also for the best.
  • I had my annual exam on Tuesday. Apparently, with all the other health concerns of mine, I’ve been slacking on the monthly breast exams. Now I know to never ever ever do that again. Because I have a rather sizable lump in my breast and have to wait close to two weeks for the mammogram to see if it’s a clear lump or a solid lump and then have needles inserted into my breast to drain it if it’s just a cyst or take a biopsy if it’s not. I’m a bit freaked out to say the least and my anxiety brain keeps bringing up all the ways I’ll need to tell people when (IF!!!) I find out it’s cancer and that’s not helping. I don’t think. Or maybe it’s my brain’s way of preparing me for the worst? Hope for the best, prepare for the worst! So, I dunno. I also am just slightly superstitious without wanting to admit that I am and I don’t want to worry the bad news into existence so I’m trying to be chill and not think about it but then I find myself fondling the lump and being mad that I didn’t notice it. And then worried that some of my GI issues are actually related to this lump. I had adhesions on the gallbladder. And my stomach. What if….
    So, yes. I’m worried. I think it’s reasonable to be.

Now…on to my riledupedness!

I am SO FUCKING TIRED OF EXTREMES! Guys. It’s ok for me to say “man the education system here in America really needs some work.” Nowhere in there did I say “Man, America fucking sucks!” It’s possible to enjoy a thing while, also, seeing where it can improve. But nooooo, the “Get out of American if you hate it so much!” crowd cannot be reasoned with. Shut up.

I’m also tired of the extreme liberals who think everyone that isn’t a liberal is some racist, dumb-shit mouth breathing moron. No they are not. Stop being a snob, you assholes.

I’m tired of people acting like if someone you admire did anything at all bad even once in their life they are now “problematic” and should not be supported ever. With that mentality Martin Luther King, Jr. wouldn’t have gotten very far. None of us would. Stop being so all or nothing, damn. Humans have issues.

If you can see the headline “Trump advised that Cohen is likely to flip” and you can still tell yourself “Trump ain’t done anything wrong!” then I do not understand you. A person cannot “flip” if they have nothing of value to share! That’s not how it works, folks.

Starbucks is having a racial bias awareness training. This is dumb. I’m sorry, but it’s dumb. The country, mostly the white citizens of this country, simply need a “Do not call the cops unless you see a literal, verifiable crime taking place. Is there no crime happening? Then do not call.” It’s really that simple.

Hell, for that matter can we all have a “Be a Reasonable Person Training.” I think that’s what I want. I want for everyone to reset back to neutral. And then if I’m talking to a friend of mine and I say something that is racist but I’m not aware it’s racist and they say “You know, Andrea, that’s racist.” and I then respond “Oh, my goodness I had no idea, I’m so sorry.” and then we both move on with our lives…. That. That is what I want every single person alive to be able to do. No drama. No butthurt. No defensiveness. Just….reasonableness. Why is that so impossible?

If you know better, you do better. Right?

I’m tired of journalism being a joke. There are so many other things this administration is up to than porn stars, Russia, and dumb shit tweets. Scott Pruitt, the head of the EPA (protecting the environment is right there in his fucking job title!) is too busy spending money to protect his phone calls, his car, and his plane rides and then scaling back actual protections of the environment yet it gets very little notice. Ryan Zinke is running around shrinking public lands so we can drill and frak and log on them. They’re making it so it doesn’t matter if a rare type of bat lives in the area, log them trees, bats be damned!! I hate it and I hate that journalists are keeping the other dramas alive instead of highlighting the bullshit that is happening in EVERY department of this administration. Do your jobs, journalists.

Basically, things have gotten to the point of being so extreme on both ends that I have very little faith that we can ever be a truly united citizenry ever again. I’ve lost that hope. And that makes me sad. Because it’s very much a sign that most, not all, people are truly that simple minded and selfish. On both sides. And that is heartbreaking.

Ten

I don’t even remember the date but ten years ago this month my divorce was final. I’ve been divorced ten years! And in that time I’ve gone to Ireland; made friends on blogs and Flickr and traveled around to meet them in person; saw Prince in concert twice; moved to Arizona; become a hiker; lost two dogs and a cat and then gained two dogs; had a brief fling; had a very irresponsible relationship; had another brief fling; had to tell two different very nice guys no thank you; hiked the Grand Canyon; went to Russia; went to Canada; went to London; went to Spain; went to Mexico; had visitors; made visits; met a guy and started the first really good relationship since the divorce; was laid off; got a new job; got a new car; went on two family vacations; and just had all of the other day to day life you have in a ten year span. WOW! It’s just sort of nuts. It’s like I’ve lived a whole other lifetime since that time.

So, last week was horrible and terrible. Why? Because for reasons I have determined to be my own stupidity and my period converging inside of my person, I had a nice build up of debilitating gas. It was so bad I stayed home from work on Thursday. I’ve done all of the things and started treating my stomach much kinder and moved around and taken the OTC meds and it’s all calmed down now. I’ve read the forums full of people that have had my surgery and I’ve come to the conclusion that this is just a thing that is going to happen for a while and until I am, truly, back to 100% (if if that is never) I need to not treat my stomach like a frat house. Moderation will now be key. Sure, I can have pizza. But not the same weekend that I also eat tacos and chorizo and cake and ice cream and beans and all sorts of other stuff. Space that shit out, damn!

And, yes, I understand that generally speaking it’s not that cool to go Googling and winding up on the WebMD diagnosing yourself with some sort of cancer. But that’s not me. I am reasonable, I know what I’ve gone through, I know what I’m going through, and I’ve not really steered myself too wrong yet. I have an appointment with the GI’s office tomorrow, however, just to make sure. Because I’m not a doctor. I’m just a reasonable person that knows how to properly Google.

I’m also a bit with the ruffled feathers when people give me side eye because “well, I know x person that had that surgery and they were fine” or “you need to go to the er immediately because you’re dying” or “did you take any pills for the pain? why suffer?” How about mind your business? Let’s do that.

I dunno. I’m as guilty of this as the next guy but we’re all very much too much with the “Well this is how I would handle it and that makes sense and works well so everyone should follow suit.” Yeah, no. Not all approaches work for all the people so how about no.

How about understand that not all surgeries are the same, not all repairs are the same, not all of our reasons for the surgery to begin with were the same, and how about doctors give us all a heads up that just because this is a laparoscopic surgery doesn’t mean it’s not a serious one. Because it is. And a heads up on all the recovery issues would be nice, too. For fuck’s sake.

So, last week there was no official weigh in but when I did weigh in I was down a total of 5.5 lbs but that won’t last. That was after taking prescription Miralax for two days and not eating a whole lot.

Yesterday I hiked. That made me feel a whole lot better. So, I’m gonna do this thing where no matter what and no matter how I feel I move my body each day. Every day. In some way. Because I want to be healthy. And my blood work revealed that I mostly am. But damn if my triglyceride levels weren’t high. So, no more bacon fat deviled eggs. Oops. I may have just revealed the source of that issue.

To end I want to recommend everyone listen to Dax Sheppard’s podcast “Armchair Expert.” It’s SO GOOD, OMG!! I’m finding my favorite podcasts are the ones where the interviewer is doing more of a good conversation. Marc Maron, Chris Hardwick, and now Dax are my three favorite podcasts.

Severed

After I wrote my post yesterday something very hurtful to me happened. I’m not gonna go into any details here but I’m documenting it because it helped me get to even further realizations. The realizations are also hurtful but they also helpful in letting me know that it’s not in my mind, and that I’m doing just about the best I can in this situation. Of course there are things that I could have done better but ultimately it wouldn’t really matter. Which is the saddest realization of them all.

Because of this event I decided early in the day that I was going to have cake after dinner. I planned it and then I did it and it was too much and it was too much sugar after limited my sugar intake and I immediately felt like crap. I think I’ve even dealing with the after effects today. I feel all weak and dizzy and like I need a salad and protein to soak it all up and out of my system. So I’m having a turkey and bacon wrap for lunch and hopefully that’ll be better than the carbs and sugar fest. Dang.

We’re not doing the official weigh in today at the office due to the other girl being out but I weighed anyway to just stay on track and accountable and I’m up one pound from last week but that means I”m still down 1.5 pounds from the beginning and that’s not a lot but it’s not nothing so I’m using the events of the past 24ish hours to motivate me to DO BETTER.

I can do better.

We all can.

The See-Saw

I’m back down 2.5 which means I’m basically gaining and losing the same pounds over and over. I gain, I see what needs to change and I change it and I go down and then I think “oh, I’m doing good, come here carbs!” and then up I go again.

So, that’s fine and good.

I’m still in 1st place. Out of 2. Which is so absurd to call this a challenge.

That’s all I got. I’m still doing my spring cleaning and it’s all coming together and when I see my dumping ground room I smile because I’m turning into my Granny and she was pretty effing awesome.

Even if the dumping ground room is a hot mess. And so was Granny’s. But she was awesome. Let’s focus on that.

I’m aging into my awesome Granny. Go me!

Square One-ish

Today is official weigh-in day. I am still, somehow, in first place out of the two of us BUT I went up and now I’m only down a total of 0.1. HAHAHAHAHA!

My carb and sugar fest has caught up with me and I totally know what I need to do to move forward and I shall. This is not a problem.

I am SO SORE. Sitting down hurts. Especially when having to sit down to pee. Toilets are so low, you guys. Ouch. But I packed my gym bag and gymming will happen again today. I may just, you know, not work my legs so I can hike Saturday morning as planned.

In other news, remember when I said I used a new product on my face and dried it the fuck out and I was so sad? Well, I did some research into the two products that I used and discovered other people had the same issue with the moisturizer, so I stopped using it. It was CeraVe AM Facial Moisturizer with 30 SPF. My usual facial moisturizer only has 15 SPF so I was trying to give my face more protection but by doing so I dried it way out after only two uses! So, no more of that. And my face has finally returned to it’s soft and smooth self. I also added Garnier Micellar Cleansing Water to my routine and holy fuck is that shit magical. I feel like my face is even softer and smoother and looks more even and glowy. But that could just be all in my head. Which is fine. If I think I look better it helps with my confidence and that reflects in my posture and my face and my all of it so I likely wind up actually looking better. It’s a win! I will say that all of my fine lines are still there and that’s fine. I don’t believe that any products can actually get rid of them and they are all selling you a lie. That’s what I think. I think you can look brighter and shinier and happier using some of these products but none of them are gonna do magic, you know? Let’s just all get happy with aging, ok? Stop calling them crows feet…that’s an ugly term and of course you’re gonna hate it. They are laugh/smile lines! That’s how they form! That’s years and years of laughter and smiling on my face!

I also finally cut my hair and it looks SO MUCH BETTER. Which is, I believe, also helping my face. My hair is healthier and softer and not so scraggly and it’s all better. Yay, haircut!

To recap, the carb and sugar bonanza is gonna end and my evening walks are going to get back to the serious phase and away from the “some walk is better than no walk!” slack fest.

And that’s the news as I know it.

Hurts So Good

Yesterday morning I packed my gym bag. Then I actually went to the gym after work. I made a plan and I stuck to it!

However, I had no plan once I was actually there. I had no idea what to do. Turns out, it didn’t matter. My former trainer saw me walk in and he came over immediately and gave me a hug and offered to write up a plan of action and text it to me so I would use my time well. He’s so awesome and it was just great seeing him and being welcomed that way. It immediately made me feel super from the inside out.

So, I got the plan, I asked him to come over and let me talk through it to him to make sure I remembered what it all was, catch up with him, and generally alleviate my anxiety before I embarked on this solo gym session.

I was nervous that I wouldn’t be strong enough to do some of the stuff after being out of the gym for so damn long. Turns out I had no need. There was only one thing I had to back down on the weight but I am nowhere near back to ground zero in my fitness and I, truly, felt like a badass being there and just being able to get back into it that way.

I left the gym smiling, happy, and feeling just empowered and great. I love that feeling.

Today I am sore, though. In places that haven’t been sore in so long! It’s awesome!!

Tomorrow is the weigh in and my weight is NOT going to be down. It’s up. And you know what? That’s fine. My main goal in this weight loss challenge was putting myself back in my routine and getting myself motivated to get all of my routines back in place and that’s happening. The weight will come off and it’s fine. I’m not a disordered eater and I don’t hate myself or my body. The opposite is true, actually. I am so happy and I love my life and myself and my body and therefore I want it to be healthy so it can carry me through my happy life for a long time to come. It’s possible to love and accept yourself while, also, making improvements.

Man! The gym! Tyler, my former trainer! He’s awesome. It was, just, really really awesome to see him and catch up and, really, to get that “you can do this, you silly ass” from him. Because I can! I did. I will!

I will!