It's My Journey
Thursday, July 14, 2016
I read an article this morning about how blogging could be an incentive to keep it up. I'm pretty sure it will help keep me on the right path to losing that last 20-ish pounds that I want gone. So it goes!
Well. I thought diabetes was going to be the main theme of my Journey blog. But it's only going to be part of it because my life is so much more than being a T2. So, as some of my SP friends know, my elderly mom, who lives with me, has Alzheimer's & Parkinson's. That is NOT a good combination. Although, to be honest, I don't think there is a good combination that contains either one of these two.
So my mom fell, again, on July 3rd. We did the hospital and a 2-week (laughable) rehab thing with her. She came home July 20th, in a wheelchair. They told us at the rehab place that she would not walk again. Well, after being at home for about a week, she declared that yes, indeed, she could walk. Mom "shuffled" from bedroom, to living room, dining room. Slower that before July 3rd, but still up. That lasted maybe a week. Then she went back to exclusively using the wheelchair. And over this past weekend (August 13/14), she stopped feeding herself. So now I get up in the mornings, take a shower, get dressed, feed the cats and start coffee, then get my mom up and man-handle her over to the bedside toilet, give her morning meds while she's there, move her to the wheelchair, push her to the dining room, hand-feed her breakfast, and move her to the lift chair in the living room. Then I get finished getting ready for work, and run out the door by 6:14 am so I can beat the school bus stops in the neighborhood on my way to the interstate for the 20+ mile drive to the big city.
I no longer have time to sometimes ride the recumbent bike before leaving for work, but that's not a problem since I do walk at least 30-minutes before work, followed by at least 30-minutes during my lunch break Tuesday-Friday. Mondays are reserved for taking my entire lunch hour with 3 of my coworkers at the food court across the street from our office. And I enjoy my salad bar salad on Mondays, eating low card stuff because of that diabetes thing.
After work I go home, except on Wednesday when I go straight to church for Bible study, and hand-feed mom dinner, and potty her and put her to bed somewhere between 8:30-9:00 pm.
It's an exhausting life now, but really, she won't live forever. If it weren't for my ex-husband, I'd have to quit work and lose everything I have. Not that I have everything I want, but I do have everything I need. I try to get my one local brother to help out some but he just won't make time for OUR mother. I took a 3-day beach trip with my 26-year old daughter and 7-year old granddaughter. My ex took care of my mother exclusively because my brother could't fit coming over even for a little while into his schedule. Did I mention that my brother's kids are both in college? It's not like he has young children to help take care of .....
Andi is hosting Victoria's 7-birthday party this Sunday (August 21). Jerry and I will both be going. Unfortunately, due to mom's current condition we no longer take her anywhere except to doctor appointments. My brother says he will come and stay with OUR mother so we can go to early service and then the party at Pump It Up. He has NO idea what he is in for, and I have no intention of telling him. He wouldn't come if he knew it was going to be more than just a "social" visit. And, yes, I realize I may never see Paul again until mom is dead after this. But really, it's not fair to me, or my ex, to be mom's only caregivers. Not when I have a full-blooded brother who only lives about 30 minutes away. I can only hope that when he realizes how much she has declined that he will step up and help care for his mother. I know that thought is a pipe dream and will never happen.
It's been quite a journey up to this point. I'm sad and ashamed to say that when I started this journey, when I was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes in August 2014, I weighed 273 lbs. I have been "heavy" most of my life but never this big. I'd say I wanted to lose weight but somehow, by not changing my eating habits, and not starting any kind of exercise program, the weight never did come off.
When I was diagnosed, my doctor told me to eat less carbs and walk 10 minutes a day. Well, I thought I was going to DIE! I was starving. And I was so out of shape that after a few days of walking 10 minutes a day my calves hurt so bad I just wanted to give up and quit. But I had also located and joined a support group on Facebook. And I was seeing posts about people going back into the hospital to have another toe amputated.
Another. Toe. Amputated.
If that wasn't a wakeup call nothing is. I have a young grandchild. And I vowed to myself that I was going to watch Victoria grow up with all of my toes. So even though I was hungry, and even though my calves were killing me, I kept it up Eating low carb and walking, just 10 minutes a day. Plus there was that added benefit of the known side effects of Metformin, the diabetic oral med. If you've ever taken Metformin, you know what I mean.
Then one day I realized that my calves weren't hurting any longer. And even though I sometimes got hungry between meals, I wasn't starving any more. And the weight was slowly coming off.
And then it happened. On April 18, 2015, I weighed in at 197. Onderland! It was at that point that I finally set a goal. I decided I wanted to shoot for 150 lbs.
Then I took my next step. Because I had divorced my husband due to a late-in-life crack cocaine habit, I moved. Away from my church and friends. Away from my ex-husband. But on the same street where our grown daughter lived with her husband and daughter. Still in the same state but in a different county. it added another 9 miles each way to my job. And I had to look for a new church because I really didn't plan on driving close to 30 miles each way to go to church.
So then in August 2015 I went for my next diabetic checkup with my doctor. I weighed 174 lbs. And my A1C was 5.0. She took me off of 2 of my 3 meds - Metformin and blood pressure. I was so excited. And a little apprehensive because I wasn't sure if I could do it without the medicine. At that point I also decided to look for a new doctor. One closer to home. To my new home. She took it well when I told her that I was going to look for a new doctor. Dr. Jordan wished me well, and said if I didn't find a new doctor that I liked, I was always welcome to keep coming to see her.
So one day I was at my mom's doctor's office, taking her in for something or the other. And I realized that I did like him with her. And so I asked him if I could transfer to him. He said yes, and I did all the paperwork to have my records moved to his practice.
My last A1C was in February of this year, 2016. It was 5.1. And I weighed 169 lbs. Yes, I had lost just over 100 lbs. Plus my cholesterol numbers were firmly in the good numbers, so I was able to stop taking that 3rd and final medicine.
I have fluctuated a wee bit in my weight since then. I started snacking on peanuts in the evening while watching TV. So I joined a challenge with one of my SparkPeople teams and my goal was to give up peanuts. So far it's been 3 days and I haven't snacked on them once!
I haven't reached my goal yet of 150 lbs. but I have EVERY intention of doing it!