First, before I get started, mom and I will be doing our first co-blog on Friday. I've already read her post, and it's just as witty as one would expect! So now I have to live up to that....good luck to me! I can promise it will be interesting to see two very different perspectives on the same topic. So be sure to tune in on Friday for that!
Ok, on to today's post. This was mostly sparked by the fact that I made a doctor's appointment with a new doctor today. So, here's a little back story. I'm currently very over-weight. I didn't always used to be over-weight. After going through pictures I figure that I really started to gain weight my senior year of high school. I was really active in high school. Not only was I in the marching band and constantly moving (it takes more athleticism than one would think....clearly it's no football work out, but we were never sitting around doing nothing!), but I also had a gym membership throughout most of high school. A gym membership that I actually used on average of 5 days a week. I may not have been eating perfectly, but I don't think that I was eating poorly enough to completely cancel out my workouts or to really explain how much I ballooned. At the end of my junior year I think I was wearing a size 12 or 13 in juniors pants. By the time I started college I was a size 16 in women's pants. It was only downhill from there. I continued to gain weight through college and into recent years. I'm now a size 20/22. Let me tell you...it's really difficult and very expensive to shop for clothing now. I shop at 3 stores...Old Navy, Lane Bryant and Dress Barn. Plus I feel like crap....physically and emotionally.
Turns out, there was actually a reason for the weight gain. Granted, in college I helped myself gain some of that weight, and I accept full responsibility for making a bad situation worse, but there's not much I can do about it now. Anyway...in the summer of 2008 I was getting ready to move to Washington, DC and decided it would be best to get all of my doctor's appointments out of the way before I went. I got my new contacts and glasses, and got my teeth cleaned, and made my first visit to a lady doctor. I'd never been previously as I'd really had no need to go, or so I thought. After going through a long list of complaints (facial hair growth, extreme cramping, weight gain etc...) the doctor decided I had Polycystic Ovary Syndrome. I encourage you to visit the site to learn more, but it basically comes with a whole slew of really obnoxious symptoms. I have almost all of them. It's painful....it's frustrating....and it's hard to find a doctor that knows how to treat it.
That first doctor wrote me a couple of prescriptions for things she thought would help, and then told me to lose weight. Then in DC the first doctor I went to told me I was likely misdiagnosed, but she didn't feel the need to go back through the symptoms with me or try to help, so I dumped her. I finally found a doctor that I liked. Unfortunately, she didn't specialize in PCOS (99% of the very few that did specialize in it back there are fertility specialists...not something I was looking for then, or now for that matter), but she was a wonderful person. She did research, and tried to help me find a diet that might help spark the weight loss, all the while being sympathetic to the fact that I had a disorder that causes me to gain weight and simultaneously makes it ridiculously hard to lose it. She was fabulous, and I lost 20 lbs while seeing her.
Now I'm back in Arizona, and was facing having to find yet another doctor. Preferably someone who knows something about PCOS, and would be willing to do a full work up on me to figure out how severe it is, and actually treat it. Let me tell you, it was not something I was looking forward to doing...at all. Lucky for me, my mom spends her days talking to doctor's offices on the phone. She's found a doctor that she assures me is amazing, and gave me a secret phone number to get a hold of the woman she knows at the office so I'd be sure to get in (how awesome is she?!). I have an appointment with said doctor next week, so fingers crossed we can start to really figure this nastiness out and try and get rid of it.
I know this has been a long, less than uplifting, post, but it's something I struggle with daily and will likely blog about numerous times in the future. I'm really determined to get better. I'm currently uncomfortable in my own skin. Literally. I'm never fully comfortable. I'm also in pain pretty frequently. I know some of you may be thinking, "So you gained some weight, deal with it. At least it's not cancer or some other awful terminal illness." Believe me, I fully agree with you. I have family members and friends who have battled cancer. I have a friend with Crohn's disease. I know that compared to what they've gone through, what I have is really minor, but that doesn't mean it doesn't suck. So yeah, that's the reader's digest version of my battle with PCOS.
That's all for now.....come back on Friday for a much lighter post about cooking! My first co-blog with mom.