Today is the third anniversary of my being cancer free. I am really happy that I was able to get here. Here is my little story.
I had come to the conclusion that I did not want to have children. I like kids, but I just don't want them for myself. Some people were meant to be mothers and I am not one of them. Kids are needy little buggers. I like it if I have extra money in my pay check I can spend it on... you guessed it me! I talked to my doctor and he referred me to a gynecologist. It was time for my annual exam which meant...pap time. I get the test done, and I sit and wait for the results. A couple of days go by and I get the results. Abnormal cells. I go back to the doctor and he sends me to a specialist where I have to get pieces ripped out of my cervix for examination. I get the test done and I sit and wait. Now, this time more time than is usual has passed with out an answer. I figure everything is ok and I don't think anything of it. My mom convinces me to call the office. I call the office and they track down my results. I am in the middle of the store when a nurse calls me and tells me that I have cervical cancer. I am shocked! I don't admit my findings for a couple of days. I then tell my mom that I have cancer. I call and talk to my dad and he makes me feel better. Then I tell hubby and he did not take it well. I go back to the doctor and we start going over my results. He suggested an ultrasound. I get one and find out that I have tumors. Even better. I am back in his office and he suggests a hysterectomy. At the time I was 33. We get it cleared from the insurance company and I make my plans to be off of work. I have the surgery and the doctor comes in the next day to say the surgery went well. He did tell me that he thought one of my ovaries looked odd so he took it out. I now find out that I had ovarian cancer in one of my ovaries. I am very grateful that it was found and removed before it was too late. It certainly helped me get my life in order and change my perspectives. Make sure all of you ladies go out and get your yearly exams. I know they are an embarrassing pain but I would rather deal with a couple minutes of embarrassment than an eternity of death.
I have been gluten free now for going on one year. I have to admit that I feel great. Here is how it happened.
I was watching an episode of the Dr. Oz show. He had on a guest who had a gluten intolerance. She was going to show everyone how to make gluten free scones. So, I sat through the commercial to see what she had to say. She started talking about her stomach problems. Oh my goodness...those are the same problems that I have. I had been diagnosed with IBS about 10 years earlier. I decided that I was going to give it a try. Now I would have gone to my doctor to get tested but my place of employment had horrible health insurance and I had to pay everything until I reached $1200. I took myself off gluten and started to feel better in the next couple of days. I no longer had any of the horrible stomach problems that I experienced.
I went out and bought gluten free cookbooks to help me until I learned how to do it on my own. Those 7 cookbooks are the best cookbooks that I have ever owned. ( Thanks Half.com). I can now cook on my own and can even make my own cookies and cakes. I try to avoid commercial gluten free products since they aren't that healthy and loaded with salt and calories.
I do miss the ease of ordering when I go out to eat or being able to pick up something when I am short on time. Oh, how I miss pizza. Now, I have to read every ingredient to make sure it isn't hiding in there somewhere. I always have to ask for a gluten free menu or ask to talk to a manager to see about what items are gluten free.
I was really worried when I went to Disney World that I wouldn't be able to eat a lot while I was there. Boy, was I wrong! I was able to talk to all of the chefs and they told me what I could eat or gave me a tour if it were a buffet. I loved Tusker House in Animal Kingdom where I was given a tour by the chef and he gave me gluten free bread. I even was able to have Mickey shaped waffles at the Ohana! The chef made them for me and I had my own plate for all of my food. The chef at Hollywood and Vine even made me my own chocolate cake. I could go on forever about the wonders of Disney World but I'll spare you (Feel free to pm me if you really want to know). Just know they will take really good care of you if you go. If anyone is going to visit there I suggest you get a gluten free friend to take with you because you get to cut in front of everyone when you are waiting for counter service.
My DH went gluten free as well for the most part since I do all of the shopping. I do buy him bread so he can take sandwiches to work. We are now in love with Chex and rice cakes.
Going gluten free has helped my health as well. I lost weight and am able to control my blood pressure. It also helps me stay away from buying all of those wonderful cakes and cookies that I love. I know that is not the point but it is just a little added bonus. Well that is my gluten free story.
It was early in the morning and my dog woke me up to tell me that he needed to go outside. So I roll out of bed and I put his leash on. I walk down the stairs and I'm standing in my driveway when all of a sudden my jammy pants fall to the ground. (Since I lost the weight I was laid off from my job and have been unable to afford a new wardrobe.) Luckily for me, it was 6 am. Thank goodness for 6 am and no one was out.
My local YMCA has several yoga classes. Most of them have an additional fee but I found one that is free. I can afford free. I am able to take it in-between spinning classes. It isn't at the most ideal time for me since I would rather finish my workout day with yoga but I manage with what I have available. Well that and beggars can't be choosers.
So, today after my first spinning class and some time on the treadmill I went to the yoga class. It is so relaxing. It is such a great way of getting rid of all the tension I have in my life currently. When I first started taking classes I couldn't hold the poses very long and had horrible form. Luckily for me, the instructor was wonderful and would come over and show me how to do a pose better or how to use modifications to help achieve the pose. Well today I noticed that the instructor didn't have to come over and show me what to do. I was doing everything better. I also no longer need to rely on the yoga blocks. I'm so much happier with what I have achieved. I also feel better in my yoga clothes. 73 pounds ago I really wasn't happy wearing anything close to tight fitting. Now, I can wear appropriate clothes and feel comfortable in it. I love progress.
I was on the fence about blogging about my weight loss journey. Today, I decided to do it. Today I am going to write about how far I have come.
I decided to take control of my life about a year ago. I was at my highest weight of 211 pounds. I am 5'0 and this weight was certainly taking a toll on my health. At the time, I needed to be on several blood pressure medications and I needed to watch my cholesterol. I couldn't go a day without having some kind of horrible pains in my feet. I admit it- I was miserable! One day I was talking to a friend of mine about my decision to lose weight. I told her that I was going to join our local YMCA and wanted to start pricing bikes. As luck would have it she gave me her old bike! Yippee! I qualified for a discounted membership at the YMCA and have been working out ever since.
I went from rarely leaving my couch to working out 6 times a week.
I went from being sore after a 10 mile ride to being able to ride for 66 miles without a problem.
I went from being scared to take a spinning class to now taking three classes in a row. (Yes, that is 3 hours of spinning.)
I never wanted to exercise and now I am crabby if I go a day without it.
I learned that I wasn't eating properly. Now I eat healthy foods and enjoy it.
I am no longer on blood pressure medication.
I went from not exercising to wanting to train for a triathlon.
I went from only running if I were being chased by a fire breathing dragon to running a 7 minute mile...and enjoying it.
I was ashamed of how I let myself go. Now I am happy with the person I became.
I went from a size 18 to a size 6. (There is nothing wrong with a little vanity.)
I lost 73 pounds and I am darn proud of it.
I know that this is still a journey and that I have more to learn but I am up for the challenge. I wish all of you the best of luck on your journey. It is possible- you can do it, I have faith in you.