Benign.

I don’t think I’ve heard a better word in a long time.

When the doctor called me with the results, a wave washed over my entire body and melted all the stress I’ve been holding onto.  I could almost see it running down my arms, dripping off my fingertips and disappearing through the cracks in the hardwood floor.

I didn’t realize how much stress I had been holding onto until that moment.

The two-inch scar, the bruising, the discomfort, the swelling, the fear, and yes even the 7 lb weight gain–I would do it all again, and again, and again….

Because I live with enough uncertainty, we all do.

Having an answer for just a little piece of uncertainty can change your life.

I’m so thankful that my answer came back “benign”.

So very, very, thankful.

I would love to be able to say that the only thing wrong with me is that I’m overweight.

LOVE to be able to say that because most people would hear that and think: fixable.

Unfortunately that isn’t something I’ll ever be able to say.

I can share that I’m no longer clinically obese, my BMI puts me in the “overweight” category now. I’m feeling better about the way I look and enjoying clothing more than I have in the past 14 years.

BUT I still suffer (and will for the rest of my life) from autoimmune diseases, and the issues associated with that can still bring my life to a standstill.

I’ve felt disengaged from life for a few months now—sure I still get through the day to day stuff but it hasn’t been easy.  I’ve distanced myself from people I love to hang out with because once again I feel the brain fog creeping in, the inflammation of my body makes it hard to concentrate on conversation and I feel like I bring the party down with my presence.

Living with an autoimmune disease can be tricky.  When you have more than one it gets complicated.  What helps with the inflammation and allergy often causes my thyroid to go out of wack.  And lately I’ve been experiencing some loss of muscle control. That symptom alone brings a whole host of other considerations and problems into my life…it’s the symptom my neurologist has warned me about and the one I can’t ignore for too much longer.

But first I need to deal with the breast issue.  After having 2 mammograms, 3 ultrasounds and being told the docs wanted to monitor me for the next six months due to a strange mass in my right breast,  I took matters into my own hands.  I went to a breast surgeon who took one look at the mammograms and told me she would want the mass taken out—no needle biopsy for me.  Surgery.

Needless to say the past five months have been a bit stressful.  Stress tends to trigger autoimmune symptoms.  The stress of the unknown for me is particularly bad.

I do have a plan in my mind if it turns out to be cancer.  Obviously I’m hoping this is not the case.  Having the back-up plan in my mind helps keep the stress down somewhat but this hasn’t been something I’ve yet been able to talk about. Joke about: yes, but talk about in my usual manner not so much.

As for the muscle control issue—no plan.  I expect it’ll be another MRI and a possible MS diagnosis…or maybe this is just another symptom of my current autoimmune and the stress I’ve been feeling.

I’ve kind of put life on hold in some ways.  I was so excited back in October planning a new business venture, planning to go back to school and working on getting healthy.  Then I hit the “oh shit” moment and fell apart a bit.  Oh I faked the happy well when I had to—but it’s getting harder to do as the reality of my life grabs hold.

Next week is surgery, and this week I feel like I’m falling apart emotionally.  I’m finding it harder to hold myself together to even get through the day to day…

I keep reminding myself that I’ve gotten through so much, these new symptoms and new issues are just a few more bumps on the road to health.

I’m trying to keep that in mind and stay positive.

It’s hard, but I’m trying.

the new me is the old me

Interestingly enough, I’m 20lbs over what I was when I got married BUT I fit into my old jeans and a good portion of my old skirts from that time.

I’ve spent the month firmly in one-derland (194ish) and have been doing a lot of reading about Leptin and resetting my hormones in general.  The information isn’t really new to me, but putting it all together and looking at some things in a new light I’ve had more than a few “AhHA!” moments.

People that have known me since our move to the states (14yrs ago) are in awe of the transformation my body has undergone…while people from my life before the move, who haven’t seen me in the same amount of time, comment that I “haven’t changed a bit!”

Which makes me look at them in horror–after all the crazy medical, all the surgery, all the babies I haven’t changed???  OH, right you didn’t get to witness all that or my spiral into obesity.

The moment passes quickly and a sincere “thank you” comes out but in the back of my mind the thought lingers.

I looked at myself in the mirror for the past 14yrs and most days I saw the “old” me.  These days I’m almost surprised to see her.  It has made me realize how much denial I put myself in over the years regarding the changes in my appearance.  So I guess in some ways I shouldn’t be taken aback by the surprise my current circle of friends exhibit when they see me now–I have changed, they’ve only ever known me obese…this thinner me will take some getting used to.

And my old friends–they’ve never known me obese or sick…of course they’d think I haven’t changed much.

Looking at photos from my late 20s, I do look much more like that girl than I have in a long time.  In many ways the new me is the old me…only she has a wealth of experiences the old me never thought/dreamed/could anticipate would happen.

There’s still a long journey ahead of me, but I’m happy to be able to say that it looks like I’ve made it to stable ground.  Blood work looks awesome, hormones seem to be doing what they are ment to do and fitting into sz 12 (which are now getting loose!) jeans is a definite bonus!

One-Derland!!

199.8–still counts as one-derland, right?

:)

 

7 pounds to wonderland…

I’m 7 pounds away from one-derland!  And it looks like I have a stomach bug…not sure if I can count that as a good thing or a bad.  Good, I might see one-derland before the sickness leaves me.  Bad, I won’t be able to count it as a true weigh in because the weight you lose while sick never stays gone!

 

 

Inspired

There are some places in this world where you cannot help but be inspired.

For me, being on or near any body of water sets my mind at peace and send relaxed waves through my body.  No matter my moods or thoughts before, viewing the crashing waves will bring my  mind to peace and my body to rest.

While walking along a beach on the Strait of Juan de Fuca this summer thoughts about how transformed I felt floated through my mind as my eyes scanned the sand for treasures to point out to my children.  Then I saw this, a perfect smooth rock resting in the sand…

The words took a moment to register, a moment more to smile at the thought of someone writing the perfect words just for me at that moment.  At least that’s how I felt.

I AM exactly where I need to be at this moment of my life—I’ve let go of the stresses associated with my health.  I’ve come to terms with my
weight loss struggles and triumphs.

I am in a place where I do not allow the outside world to form me, I have worked hard to transform myself and to accept thoughts that may have been foreign to me at one point.

I feel as if I am a new person.  A person transformed and born anew.

My life changing journey has taken me places, has introduced me to people and has reshaped my mind…and I am grateful to still be here, to be able to continue this journey and others.  To be able to say that I’m changing my own little world…starting with me, but touching all those around me and maybe encouraging someone else to take their own journey toward change.

I still find myself posting, thinking and writing more about my crafty side…but every now and then I come back here to share the more personal side of me….

I hope that todays day brings something inspiring into your life…or at least makes you smile as you continue on the path of your own journey.

In the two-teens

I hit the twoTeens–mid level.

Nothing much else to report…feeling good after eliminating dairy, gluten and other allergens on my list to avoid.

Now I’m off to the crafty side to play catch up!