Wednesday, September 28, 2011

"At least you have your health."

I thought the worst of the year was over. DING! I was wrong.

I went off of Nuvaring in April. I took Yaz-B for the month of May. And then I decided that I wanted to remain celibate for a year - especially after all that shit went down - and decided to return to o'naturalle. One vein reason being that I thought I could lose a few easy pounds going off BC like I did the last time I went off of it at 22. For the fear of my fertility, I told 18 year old me I'd only be on it for 4 years. I decided to go back on it again when I started well, that whole story. Suffice to say I thought $70 a month would be cheaper than a baby. And I chose $70 for Nuvaring over $20 for pills cause I suck at routines. So there's that story, because I blame this all on Nuvaring. Once a loved novelty, I now wish I'd never used.

For a long time I was 142 to 145. While training for the half-marathon in spring, I averaged 146; muscle, I assumed. A month after going on off birth control - 2 months off of Nuvaring - I had put on 3 pounds. I was 149. I thought maybe it was because I'd stopped training for the half marathon; it was the heaviest I'd been since being fat for a minute after Christmas 2009 and going on a weight loss bet with my friend. July I was working out to get fit for Miami, but to no avail. I gave up, I went to Miami at 153. Something wasn't right, but I blamed age and lack of total rigor. (I used to be able to drop weight at the gym easy.) August rolls around and I'm 153. My pants don't fit and I've been wearing mostly dresses. The clothes that fit now are the ones that were transition from when I had gained 20lbs in grad school and was working towards dropping 30. At the end of August I start to train for the Army Ten Miler coming up in October. 4+ hours at the gym every week, plus a run every Saturday: 2.5 miles working up to 9.25 (and a mile to walk the dog: 10.30). I now weigh 156. For me, I'm huge. Disgusting. I don't want to leave my house. I'm tired now. I haven't had a period since June (exactly 28 days after the last pill). Initially I blamed it on stress from July, but I got over that. (Now I"m panicking about my health...and the health of my uterus.)

Last Friday, feeling fat still - the uncomfortable, fake kind; like bloating just before a period, I went out with friends. I let loose, had drinks and woke up the next morning with a belly that was seriously distended. It stayed that way for 3 days. I sent a photo to my mom (i.e. Personal RN); Before and afters (below), you know. She was convinced I was pregnant. Though, to be fair, I did look 4 months pregnant...and hadn't a period. "Impossible," I told her. After convincing her I didn't have a "night of unknown sex" (her words), she started to worry. Tumors, cysts, diabetes...  Between telling me she was going to have to put the family dog (of 15 years) to sleep that night and listing what might be wrong with me, she insisted I call the doctor (which sucks cause I have a high deductible plan and it renews on October 1st).  I thought I'd go in and they'd look at me and tell me to go on a diet.

"Has your diet changed?" he asked.
"Yes. I eat about once a day and it's always a grilled chicken salad...CAUSE I WAS GAINING WEIGHT!"

Luckily, they didn't just throw me out and tell me to diet: I'm tired, achy, retaining water, gaining weight (when I'm training and should be losing it), no period for months, thirsty, etc. He poked around and told me it could be any number of things: hypothyroidism, lyme disease, etc. etc. And if he has to order CT Scans or other scary there's-something-seriously-wrong-we-need-to-find-it hospital sounding things, they need to make sure I'm not actually, in fact, pregnant (though he was sure to tell me that he did believe me when I said I wasn't, but "didn't want to be mocked by the medical community for not checking"), so they're checking my blood for that too.

Perhaps my plethora of photos which I use to document my progress at the gym helped. Although he kept giggling at all the abdominal photos I kept making him look at "See, see! THIS is me..."

"And this isn't," I exclaimed, showing him my photographic evidence. So, they took 5 or 6 viles of blood; I can't remember 'cause I was too busy talking to the Polish phlebotomist again and trying to convince myself my hand wasn't tingling and I wasn't going to pass out. I get the results back tomorrow. I'm terrified if they find results and almost even more terrified if they don't. I don't feel like myself; I don't look like myself. This year is taking a lot out of me and between losing family members and family friends and others having strokes and family pets dying twice in the past two months and feeling like friends dropped me while a stupid boy was betraying me and car windows shattering and purses being stolen and being broke, I'm not sure how much more I can handle.

At least before people would say "at least you have your health". That's all I had going for me; and they were totally right saying that "at least you have your health", because I'd go through all that again to not be going through what I am right now. I thought: Everything is wrong and they'd say, "At least you have your health". Well, so what happens when that's gone?  I need something positive to grab onto now.