Monday, August 5, 2013

Wants and Needs

So, a small and significant issue happened with my mother recently. On Thursday (7/26) my mother was admitted to the ER with severe (read: SEVERE) abdominal pain that radiated into her back and arms. For those with some medical training, this is a classic sign that her gallbladder has gone bad. This issue, usually insignificant, turned out to be horrendously dangerous, and she ended up having emergency surgery Saturday night. It lasted more than 4 hours because the surgeon tried to go in through scopes and having found Mom's gallbladder had become gangrenous, decided to open her up and remove it the classic way, which would require a more in-depth post-op treatment.

She remained sedated and entubated through Saturday night into Sunday in the ICU, mainly to help her body recover from the death-pleadingly-horrific pain she had been in the past 2 days, and so she actually got some rest from it. She was moved to a regular room on Monday (7/29) and was on a regular diet by Wednesday. On Thursday she was allowed to go home, having been making great strides while in the hospital, the doctors found no reason to keep her once her abdominal drain was showing clear liquids and she was able to use the restroom without pain.

What does this have to do with me? Well, my mother is only the latest of my maternal family to have her gallbladder removed. Both of her sisters, my grandmother, and even my grandfather have all had theirs removed, which means there is a good chance I will need mine removed some day as well. The pathologist found no real reason as to why her gallbladder had suddenly and violently flared up in a bout of gangrene and severe pancreatitis, but it almost cost my mother her life. So, as I read up on classic gallbladder symptoms and prepared myself for what I hope will be my only ever hospital stay (so far I have been blessed to have only ever suffered one minor broken bone in elementary school and no hospital stays).

Again, where is this going? Aside from the fact that it is now 11PM on a Monday, my husband is (hopefully) fast asleep in the bedroom as he has to be up and at work at 4AM tomorrow, I am suffering with my first bout of insomnia since high school. It was a trip with my mother today to her regular doctor that has my mind a-racing. Her doctor said "Chris, you are extremely lucky to be alive. The doctor, and even the surgeon, didn't think you were going to make it out of surgery."




WHO SAYS THAT?! I mean sure, it's a valid observation, and sure, we are adults and can handle hard truths, but Jesus H Christ if my doctor said that to be I'd be looking for a new doctor. Calling it a close call is good enough for me. I need sugar coating when it comes to my own mortality, thank you very much. But, it really got me spooked. My mother is not going to be there for me forever. I will outlive her (most likely). Some day, she is going to die, and that freaks me the fuck out. I need her to live forever. As much as she is a pain in my ass most times, and as much as we have our differences and how thick-headed she is that I need to explain how to use a computer time and time again, I will only ever have one mother, and she is it.

So do I really want to bring someone into this world that will inevitably be thinking the same of me? Do I want a child to sit by my bed in a hospital as I lay there beeping and in pain, begging for death, and have to come with the real life terms of my own and their mortality? Do I want to see my life turn into youth, pouring from me to this innocent vessel of my creation? Right now, the answer is no. I don't want someone to prematurely mourn for my death and think about how short life is only 2 years into their own adult life.... I don't want a child to have to see the things that I saw and carry with them the burden of what they should do if I am not able to get my own affairs in order.

Today I used the BMI calculator at the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute to find out what my BMI is. This actually ties into the doctor's visit my mother had today as she dropped about 20 pounds during her hospital stay, and is now officially UN-Categorized as obese! In fact, she is actually fallen so far down that she is on the borderline between just "overweight" and "normal weight". HOLY COW!!

She obviously did not do it the ideal way, getting sick and all, but it is about 20 or so pounds she doesn't have to worry about losing. AND- she's been cigarette-free since her initial intake in the hospital, 11 days! Not bad for someone who has smoked since she was 13! That should also help her keep off some of that weight, and probably lose more!

Here I am, only down about...... 5 pounds since last November. WHAT?!?!?!
Yup. A blog post from November says I was 210, and I'm 205 this week. So, I've yo-yo-ed all friggin year. Sure, I've dropped 2 pant sizes, but then that means I built some muscle.... or gained fat back somewhere other than my waist.

My biggest want is to be healthy and free from the addictions I have let myself into to: junk food, soda, etc. My biggest NEED is to change my lifestyle and change it for good. I went back through last year's blog posts to see what I was doing right and wrong, and it seems that the gym was all my right, and food was all of my wrong.

Tomorrow (Tuesday) I'm going to eat only unprocessed food. So, no canned salsa, cream cheese, soda, ketchup, etc. I will only eat "paleo" for the day. I want to see how my body reacts to it. I have a fridge STOCKED FULL of fruits and veggies, and I have almonds, whole grain rolled oats, fresh homemade cheeses and applesauce, salad, homemade FRESH lime-vanilla dressing.... I have enough food to not pop open a can ALL DAMN DAY! So, let's see what happens. I shall turn into a rabbit!

This really tapered off towards the end. But, I'm pretty down right now. The doctor's visit today has me scared, and work has not been any easier. I haven't been to the gym on a regular basis, and John really doesn't make me feel any better when he criticizes me for needed/taking 7-hours of sleep at night. Just because he can function on 3-5 hours doesn't mean we all can. And not all of us are early risers either. But, I was at one point. Last year there was a time where the gym and the early AM were my friends. Maybe I can get back to that?! I have a 3.5mile goal to hit every day, plus an additional mile each day to help cut into that deficit. I WILL make my destination by the end of this year!

Also, it's the beginning of August, so time to set a goal I think. Something tangible I can work towards. I am 205lbs right now. I want to be UNDER 200 by the end of the month. Yup. Five whole pounds is what I need to lose. Nice and easy. Well, sorta.

Night y'all. I'm off to try and find some sleep.

1 comment:

  1. I know all about the yo-yo'ing of pounds...I have been doing it all year. I keep saying I am going to break the cycle and then I don't!

    Some people do well with hard truths, it's the only thing that makes them change. Would it make you re-evaluate your efforts if your doctor sat you down today and need to lose xxx amount of weight or you will not make it to next year. I sure as hell would! However, if they sugar coated it and said you need to lose xxx amount of weight or there MIGHT be a chance you won't make it to next year....I would only hear "MIGHT" and figure that there is a chance it won't.

    It's unfortunate that the cycle of life means our parents won't be around forever. I pretty much grew up knowing my mom wasn't going to live as long as other mothers. In fact, I never knew if she would make it out of the next surgery. I still honestly figure she only has 15 - 20 years max. She's 56 now.

    I will be heart broken and overcome with grief when that time comes. I also know that she is proud of me and my accomplishments. I am also glad to have given her grandchildren and that she is still well enough to enjoy them. If we spend our lives worrying about things that haven't happened yet, we won't be able to enjoy ourselves.

    Don't let all of those "if's, and's and but's" stop you from having children. You can't predict the future.

    As for food, we will get there. Plus, we will get our goals for walking in this week!

    Love you!