Tuesday, June 05, 2012
So, I went to the endocrinologist today. You won't believe what he said. I'm having a hard time believing what he said!
I walked in with my labs. He glanced at them, glanced at my paperwork and said "so you're here because....?" I said that I'd been diagnosed with insulin resistance about 10 years ago, I've had increasingly hard time losing weight, haven't been feeling good for awhile and I'm tired of being tired. He asked what I'd done to try to lose weight. I told him, WW. Supervised medical fast. Exercise. Counting calories. Jenny Craig.
And he said......
"You know, I just became a distributor for Medifast, it's a great program and you should give it a try!!" I said, um well, I've done one supervised fast and it was the same problem, I can lose about 20 pounds but then it stops. His response?
"Oh but the food is really good now!" and went on about what options there were with food and how tasty it is now. I replied, look I can't afford it.
For the next 40 min he asked me all the questions I had already filled out on the paperwork in front of him (which he did not look at). He looked over my labs and said "well, it's all within normal limits". He asked me if I tracked my food/exercise and when I mentioned Spark, promptly told me "all those programs grossly overestimate your calorie burn and calorie intake. Mostly useless".
He mentioned Medifast 22 times. I counted. At the end, when I again, firmly said I can't afford that, he said......
"Well, if you won't try Medifast, then I want you to cut your calories to 600-800 a day, eating 100 to 200 calories at a feeding. (he kept using the word feeding, which I found bizarre). I also want you to cut your exercise out for about a month, because you are going to be really hungry and working out will just make it worse. After about three weeks or so, you're body will start to burn fat. How about you come back in two months and we'll see how you're doing. If you decide to try the Medifast, just give me a call and I'll get you hooked up."
Honest to God. That's what my appointment consisted of. The 30 min drive back to the office, I alternated between being angry, being flabbergasted and feeling despair. I talked to a trusted friend, and I talked to my partner. Both were pretty horrified at his suggestions.
Hell, I'm horrified at his suggestions! Really? You want me to stop exercising for a month and starve myself on 600-800 calories a day? I lost 2 hours of work and paid you a copay to hear that "advice"?
So now, I'm thinking, what's next? What do I do next, where do I want to go. I believe strongly that I need to do exactly what I'd been doing, cutting wheat/grains, processed foods, etc. I need to eat 6 small meals a day, and I need to keep exercising. I need to be patient and I need to celebrate the small things like feeling my stomach lose the bloat I get from wheat/processed foods. Maybe I'll never lose all this weight, but I'll feel good.
Hours after the appointment, I'm still shaking my head and thinking, really?? Is this a joke? am I on Candid Camera? Wow.
Tuesday, June 05, 2012
Today is the appointment with the endocrinologist to talk about my metabolic syndrome (insulin resistance, possible polycystic ovary syndrome, basically 'pre-diabetes' stuff).
Why am I nervous? Well, I have about 25 years of unsuccessful attempts to get help.
In the late 80s, when I was having periods that would last 48 days, stop for 12 days and start again....I heard "oh, there's something wrong! we'll get to the bottom of this!". Thousands of dollars and everything "within normal limits" later - the neurologist they sent me to handed me an Rx for lithium and said I was "depressed or maybe bioplar". After two 10 min visits, he is qualified to tell me I'm bipolar???? Well, maybe I was depressed, but if HE had had periods that never stopped, betcha he'd have been depressed too! (later longterm work with a psychologist told me no, I was definitely not bipolar, I had PTSD).
When I went to the doctor saying I couldn't lose weight, was tired all the time, etc. and got my initial diagnosis of insulin resistance/metabolic syndrome, they did blood work. When I came back, the doc said "you have insulin resistance. It's basically prediabetes and you're at a greater risk for stroke or heart disease." I said, what do I do? and as she walked out, she said "lose weight". That was 10 years ago, and I've been trying - unsuccessfully - to lose weight ever since.
18 months ago, a doctor (who unfortunately left the area) DID give me some reasons: My hormones are out of whack, I have way too much estrogen. If I don't control my carbs, the insulin resistance is going to continue pretty much unchecked.
So what am I worried about? I'm worried he will want a million dollars worth of blood work to tell me "there's nothing wrong with you" or as the one doc did, say "lose weight" as he walks out the door. I. Can't. Seem. To. Lose. Weight. That's why I'm here.....Will he (like the one doctor who listened) say the only way to help myself was to go to a radically different diet (no grains, no potato, no rice)? While I've managed to cut a lot of that out, cutting it 100% has proven very difficult for me. I end up having one of those daily, despite my best intentions, or because of a very tight budget, I'm having a bowl of cereal for dinner kinda stuff.
Of course, I'm not losing weight doing it either. It would be motivating to keep working hard at it if I was losing. But to work freaking hard and lose nothing for weeks in a row? Very difficult to maintain my motivation.
Sooo. I'm a little nervous. On top of the warning by my primary care that he didn't want me to mention that I'm gay to him...because, and I quote, "He's really the best in town at what he does, but I'll be honest he's sort of a jerk and he's very conservative. I don't want him to treat you differently because you're gay".
Really? Gee, no that doesn't make me the least bit nervous. There are other endocrinologists in my town, but not covered under my insurance. I figure, I'll go to this guy to start and only have to pay a copay. If he is intolerable, I'll save up the $$ to go to the ones that aren't covered by my plan.
But it's all combining, the history of no help and the warning to not be myself, have me ...... nervous. I'm sure I'll be letting y'all know how it went, LOL....
Sunday, June 03, 2012
I walked a charity 5K this a.m., Heaven Can Wait - a fundraising walk for a local breast cancer program. Along with roughly 4,000 others, I walked a 5K (3.1 mile) course.
I've done this walk probably 5 years in a row. This was the first year I didn't train very well for it...and wow, did I hurt when it was done! Definitely felt some regret that I hadn't been diligent in training. But, it's done and after a couple Advil and a nap, I'm mostly recovered.
Finally got that hair cut I've needed so badly, and feel better already! Those simple acts of self care really do add up...
Saturday, June 02, 2012
If you're a woman - "pretty" might have loaded meanings.
Is it the trappings of trying to fit into a patriarchal society? Is it vanity? Is it the stereotype of femininity? Is it trying to keep a deathgrip on youth in a society obsessed with youth?
When I was young, I loved all things makeup and beauty. Adored it, enjoyed it, I liked using cosmetics, playing with my hair, etc.
Then I came out as lesbian, and the very first lesbian friend I made had very different views. She felt using makeup and fussing with your hair was only for women trying to attract men's attention. She suggested I cut my hair, stop using makeup etc.
I tried, but that didn't last LOL.
Today, I'm back to the makeup and long hair I love.
Except, sometimes, I don't feel pretty. Yes, yes, beauty comes from within. Blah blah blah.
As a woman pushing 50...my life is changing. My kids are growing up, 2 of the 4 are adults living their own lives away from me. The teens left in the house enjoy poking fun at how old I am (Civil war and dinosaur jokes, etc).
This week as I've looked in the mirror, I see aging. My hair desperately needs to be colored - the gray roots blink like strobe lights under the fluorescent lights in the restrooms at my work. The fine lines - from laughter and worry - are clearly visible to me.
I've not felt pretty lately. The beginnings of menopause are changing my skin, and I often wonder "who is that?" when I look in the mirror. My face is no longer young and taut...but softer.
My weight doesn't help things.
I'm not a vain person. I don't base my self worth on my appearance, usually anyway. I'm living my life as fully as possible - today. Wrinkles, weight, graying hair, and all.
I wondered this a.m., what would make me feel pretty? Well, my nail polish is a few specks on some fingers...I could re do that. I could make the time to get my hair cut so that I could color it and not have my eye drawn to the gray every time I see a mirror. I could make sure that clothes I feel good in are clean and pressed and ready for next week.
Love myself as I am? Well, that's been a lifelong project and it's not over yet.
Thanks for sticking through to the end of my thinking out loud on being "pretty". Tell me, if you lasted through the whole thing, what makes you feel pretty? If you're a guy, you can tell me what makes you feel good about your appearance. Or what makes you feel pretty if you're that kind of guy, too. :)
Monday, May 28, 2012
I post this because I want other large women to know, YES you can too bellydance!
I've been working on the costume, and this was a run through to help me see what else needs to happen with it before the second week in June. The dance? I had a hard time remembering the choreo, LOL. I can see myself thinking thinking thinking....
Is this my best ever performance? Nope. But here it is anyway. If you are obese, or you are over 40, or you have some reason that you are NOT doing the things you dream of.....do it anyway. Life is short. Just do it.
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