I get asked a lot, “what happened to you?” Life. Life is what “happened.” Last week I woke up hurting, depressed, disgusted in my body, shamed because “I let myself go”, just feeling like I wanted to disappear. That coupled with my wrist and hand swelling and hurting after a day of treating……I was ready to say “I quit!”
After the pity party, I decided right then to stop the madness. Yes, I created this world and I am the only one who can get myself out. So fast forward 5 days and here we are again…..”What happened to me?” So here is the reality of what “happened” to me…..
6 years ago I was diagnosed with Hashimotos (thyroid autoimmune) and suspected Lupus. Was told by my physician (whom I totally adore) that I had to give up gluten. ALL GLUTEN! Not just hear and there, totally give it up. This would help my joint pain, brain fog, depression, fatigue, etc. All associated with Hashi and Lupus. So I did just that. All gluten gone from my diet and lifestyle. I got extremely serious with my walking (which may be a slow jog) and Yoga. Lost about 45 pounds and joint pain, brain fog, fatigue GONE! My depression was even better and more controllable. Felt the best I had felt in my life! Happy, care free, had a tremendous amount of energy, AWESOME! I finally could have fun with my husband and then 8 year old.
2 years ago, I had to have a complete hysterectomy after battling PCOS, extremely high estrogen levels, endometriosis, and all the menopausal symptoms you could give me. After working with my physician for 2 years this was truly the last option. So BAM! Surgical Menopause here I come! The 6 months after the surgery were awesome. No hot flashes, night sweats, emotional roller coaster, life was great. What also went was my diet and exercise commitment. What I didn’t notice (or acknowledge) was my weight was going up, my fatigue was coming back, and my hair was falling out. Yes y’all! I was losing my hair. Then the depression wall stopped me dead in my tracks.
The past 2 years, I have done everything from shakes, crash diets, restrictions, pills (which helped a bit but made my heart race like I was running for my life), everything. Fatigue so bad that just to get out of bed in the morning took a small army and serious self talk. Would start and stop exercise programs, remain consistent to my yoga practice and walking for about 6 weeks, then I would have a Hashi and “Lupus” flare then go right back to sitting and doing nothing cause I hurt so bad. And the weight, this is why I get asked “what happened to you?”
What are these flares? Well imaging everything in your body on fire and your joints so stiff they feel as though they will break if you move them. Then migraine city joins in and that makes for some pretty rough seas. Then after everything calms, feeling as though you are moving through wet sand just to get up and go to bathroom. So when they hit, I did nothing but ride the wave. EVERYTHING suffered…life, work, and family.
To begin to reign everything in, today I sat in my living room and cried because I can feel the flare coming and I know it’s because I haven’t been taking care of myself as I should. This morning’s pity party was different. Instead of the normal gloom and doom, there was a feeling of “I got this!” Really, I got this! Then I put pen to paper and here is what you have.
This is what I know:
Pain so bad you just want to curl up and cry.
Weight gain like no other and the feeling of shame that comes with it.
Not wanting to leave the house because someone may see you and talk.
Knowing I need to move but don’t because everything jiggles and I will berate myself.
Making decisions to change, and do for a bit, then go right back to where I was.
Loneliness cause there is no one to express this to.
Feeling as if I am the only one who is going through this.
Drastic mood swings, hot flashes, night sweats.
What opened my eyes and heart up this time was, “I am the ONLY one who can fix this!” So I have put things in place to aid me on my journey of taking my health and life back. Being this “size” or “shape” is something that I struggle with because 1) I have never had to deal with this before and 2) was raised that looking like I do now is taboo. At the end of the day, it’s not what defines me!
This experience has taught me that you truly never know what someone is going through so just shut the hell up with your judgement. So when I get asked again, “what happened to you”….after I refrain from the cussing them out and urge to throat punch them…..my answer will be “I got this.” Nothing more than that. May offer some “chocolate” pie. If you have seen the movie The Help, you will understand the reference here. Sometimes you just have to make someone a pie.