MILLIFRED
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At Goal; At Last after 4 years

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Friday, June 07, 2013

Looking back in my records I find that on June 3, 2009 I had reached an all time high for me of 206 pounds. At 63 my health was suffering with such problems as diabetes, high blood pressure, etc. Now exactly 4 years later I have reached my goal of 150 pounds. My blood pressure is normal and my diabetes is reversed. Sounds like a success story and it is but there were some major bumps along the way.

Just over two years ago I entered the hospital for observation with a diagnosis of kidney stones and was scheduled for removal of said stones the next morning. A month later I woke up in ICU on a ventilator undergoing dialysis. The surgeons hand had slipped injuring a kidney and infected urine poured into my abdominal cavity resulting in toxic shock syndrome and multi - system failure. What this means in lay terms is my heart, lungs, liver and kidneys had all failed and I had been in shock for a month causing many at that time unidentified problems. I woke up totally deaf. At first it was sort of amusing, then frustrating, then downright scary. Gradually I went through the recovery process and when another month had passed I was sent for inpatient rehab. At this time a small amount of hearing had returned in one ear and I was able to sort of hear with the use of a hand held amplifier. I had lost 20 pounds while in the hospital and was unable to stand with two people holding me up. I was on dialysis three times a week at this time.

Another month later found me at home, still going in for dialysis and trying to adapt to my first hearing aid as the hearing loss was predicted to be permanent. Eventually I fought my way off dialysis by finding another nevermore who was willing to give it a try. Since then my kidneys have continued to improve to the present day where I am hovering between stage 3 and 4 kidney disease. A year ago I had a cochlear implant in the non hearing ear and now am able to manage quite well in most situations.

This Spring I decided to try to take it a step farther and returned to Spark People as a means of losing a bit more weight and gaining in strength. It was time to return to normal living. I was tired of being treated as someone fragile and needing to be protected. I looked about for a form of activity I would enjoy as I knew I really do not like "formal" workouts as in a gym. I hit on an old love, gardening. Now I have worked up from doing about 10 minutes a day in my flower beds to developing several more flower beds and planting and maintaining a huge vegetable garden (with my husbands help of course). I credit the Spark system of starting slow and building up for my success. I now spend hours outside doing whatever I can find to do and am feeling much better.

I still need to work on the balance issues that were also a result of my illness, but should be starting vestibular rehab for that shortly. It is said to be very successful in most cases.

My work towards goal weight was relatively easy this time with only 15 pounds left to lose. My new goal will be to maintain that weight or lose possibly 5 more pounds. I plan to stay physically active and work on the balance problem and, oh yes, enjoy my gardens! Thank you Spark Friends for all your support and encouragement over the years.
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