Never Say Never Again

I haven’t posted in a while – mostly because IF I GET TIRED OF LISTENING TO MY DRAMA I’m sure others do too.  It’s exhausting.

Yes, I still deal daily with my adult children’s chronic mental and physical health issues – yes, I’m still dealing with my divorce… and the resulting anxiety and minor depressions.  And once again it has become crystal clear that, as much as I hoot and hollar to other women that we must always take care of ourselves first if we are to take care of others, I have been ignoring my own health.  Or, at least, not paying attention to it.   No. Ignoring it.

I went to the doctor this week for the first time in about 2 years.  After seven years and multiple health insurance changes, I was finally able to get back in to see the coolest doctor I’ve ever had.  I had to wait almost an hour past my appointment time, which normally would have driven me up the wall, but then she spent forty-five minutes with me.  Well beyond the expected ten minutes in and out crap that most doctors manage.  She listens.   She responds.  She’s intuitive.  She picked up right away on my anxiety and low grade depression issues.  She recognized my self-medicating with wine (better than Zanex, I argued) and suggested we try something that might be more helpful and less harmful.   She acknowledged my concern about regain after my gastric bypass surgery 10 years ago and the psychology around it – the stressors in my life and how they  are impacting my health.  Within that 45 minutes, she started the following processes:

  • Ordered immediate blood work to check hemoglobin for diabetes indicators, and thyroid functioning (done that day)
  • Referral for mammogram (done yesterday) and colonoscopy (scheduled for May)
  • Referral to a local bariatric center that, besides doing surgeries, offers post-op medical/lab support, support groups,  psychological counseling and regain weight loss programs designed for post-op patients.  (intake appointment next Thursday)
  • Rx for a low dose of prozac to calm me down and help me cope with my day-to-day shit. (started Wednesday)
  • A follow-up appointment in a month to check on me and see how I am doing

I walked out of her office feeling better and stronger already simply because I finally felt like I have someone in my corner – rooting for me – not just telling me to lose weight and get therapy.

That’s a long way around to NEVER SAY NEVER AGAIN.   In 2008, I weighed 147 pounds – 3 years post op and 10 lbs up from my happy weight of 135-ish.  In 2009, it was 151.  Not bad, four  pounds.  This week I weighed in at 187.

I was one of those post-ops who swore NEVER AGAIN.  I’m never going back “there” again. The reality is that without vigilance, without continuing to always work on our HEAD BATTLES along with our FOOD BATTLES, we can easily regain the weight we so painstakingly lost. We can … and we do.

But our tool is always there – our pouchies for us RNY gastric bypass post-ops.  I’m back at that sick and tired of being sick and tired point.  I’m not beating myself up nor am I full of self-loathing for having regained.  I am concerned that the very issues I sought to avoid in 2005 are again realistic concerns … a very strong family history of heart disease, stroke and diabetes.  I’ve been lucky so far, but I fear the possibilities.

So next Thursday I begin a medically supervised fasting weight loss program designed and administered by a medical group that specializes in weight loss surgery and support.  I am grateful that my health insurance covers it. I will take advantage of this as long as i have this insurance (pending my divorce becoming final) or can afford a subsequent medicare supplement that also covers this service.

I’m putting myself out there for the benefit of others on this journey.   It’s real, this path we take.   Never the easy way out, always requiring care and vigilance.  But don’t ever give up.

Namaste …..

I honor your journey –





Rainy Days and Mondays …

Well, the rainy days part was cool – three good days of rain here in drought-stricken California!  The sun is trying to peak out today for the first time since Thursday night – probably a good thing for the 3-ish inches we received to have a chance to soak in well before the next “chance of rain” comes in a few days.  I hope it does, we need it!

So I went to my psychologist appointment this morning – 8 am sharp – half an hour of completing questionnaire/background forms.  Dr. B (the psychologist) took me in and we reviewed/chatted about the info on my forms and about my “current issue” – my son’s bi-polar depressive spiral – my daughter’s issues – my grandson – and … and … and … their father and his issues.  Yep, she says (Dr. B.) – we need to chat more.  We need to get your anxiety under control and to get you some coping mechanisms.  We meet again in two weeks – to start some individual counseling. We’ll talk more about where I am and how I got here.

I also saw Dr. R., the med psychiatrist – after a few minutes of him reading Dr. B’s notes and he and I chatting little more, he has taken me off Xanax because of it’s highly addictive nature, and is having me try Trazadone and Zoloft for sleep and mood stabilization.

During our chat, and in talking about my kids and their issues (which is hugely and obviously the cause of my anxiety), I verbalized a feeling that I have held internally forever – anger – anger towards my kid’s dad.

His life – our life – was more frequently than not, an emotional disaster.  A soap opera unfolding.  I felt like I was always picking up the pieces, cleaning up after his messes.  And here I am … 22 years after he died, still trying to pick up the pieces and clean up the messes.  No, he couldn’t help the genetics that were passed on to him and on to our kids and now on to our grandchildren. How many more generations will be affected?  But there was (or is it “they were”?) collateral damage to choices he made in his life, just as he suffered from choices his parents (biological and adopted) made.  Yes, I’m angry at him still.  Angry at the chaos he caused with his behaviors, angry that he left, and just as angry that he is not here to help – and angry that he is not here to see his grandchildren grow up.

Dr. R hit it on the head …. In taking care of everyone else, I never allowed myself the full grieving process … delayed grief he called it.

My head hurts – too much crying – too much thinking.  Where’s the Excedrine? And an hour nap before my weight loss surgery support group …

Namaste – today I honor me.

Itty Bitty