Over the years and due, mainly, to my health I’ve had to have a few life re-sets. A change in a major factor in my life. Walking away from nursing with very little skills apart from caring for people was just one of those times. Every time the change was mostly out of my hands, without sounding too dramatic (true though) if I wanted to continue living I had to re-evaluate.
When I had my ostomy surgery in 2010 I decided that for the first time in my life I was going to be in charge of my next step! The meds that had got me to the operation had made my weight increase to just under 18 stone (about 250lb) and I was so unfit but for the first time since I was young teenager the pain had stopped!
This was going to be a whole new adventure!
To get fit and lose enough weight to get into a size 14 (uk) pair of jeans I had bought years ago and never worn!
It took just over 2 years to lose 84lb. After 6 months of exercising I was advised to stop, Eric the stoma was very active and the output extremely watery. My body temperature had never, and still hasn’t, settled down from the intense meds, this means I sweat a lot without doing a lot. So exercising really made the sweat pour off of me, leaving me with an extreme headache and feeling fuzzy headed! No amount of electrolyte drinks and dioralyte could replace the fluids I was losing. Dehydration sucks!
The weight loss wasn’t easy, even with Eric my body can’t tolerate ‘healthy’ foods very well. Fruit and veg still have a negative effect one way or another, even potatoes on some days. I can’t bulk my meals out with filling fibre and after the 1st year it became difficult to not snack as I was almost always hungry.
I knew that I would never reach my text-book weight, the last time I was 133lb (as per medical guidelines for m height!) I was at death’s door in hospital and I did NOT look good! I set my goal weight at 175lb, when I reached that goal I was so chuffed! The 1st time I had lost weight safely and sensibly.
I never dreamed it would end up going all back on!
So here I find myself, at the start of 2017, weighing in at 240lb. The last few years have been tough for me! I knew I would put on weight when I finally gave up smoking in september 2013 but my body had started to let me down again! This time though it was nothing I was used to. My HS (Hidradinitus Suppurativa) actually got worse, even though smoking and being overweight is supposed to be the main reasons for flare ups! It limited my abilities to do simple tasks like get dressed. My hyperhidrosis was getting worse, even a walk up the stairs could make me sweat like I’d run a marathon so my dehydration issues got worse. A pain in my foot, which I had lived with since I broke it in 2007, started to intrude more and more! It became virtually unbearable. You soon realise how useless most of your coping mechanisms are when you can’t even step out of bed without excruciating pain. The worst part is that due to my limping on the foot my back starting hurting, then my other leg and foot decided to chip in, nd round and round the pain went! Various Drs, tests and remedies just seemed to give me a brief light of hope before failing! By the end of 2015 all I could see was pain. I could barely stand let alone exercise, cooking good meals was impossible and Baz was having to live with ready meals I could just throw in the oven (my excuse was at least he was getting a bit of veg with his meals lol). The long walks I used to take with my late dog Eddie was no impossible and my new Pup Lola was lucky to get 15 minutes! My balance was shot and I found myself on the floor more times than was good. My mental health, obviously, was taking a bashing as well. So early 2016 saw me in my GP’s office, Baz with me for assistance when I lost my track of thought (Brain fog due to pain!), in tears. At the end of my tether with not 1 positive thought.
Over the year I’ve been seen by various different specialists having various tests. As of yet I still haven’t really got any answers but there is now a glimmer of hope.
A Dr who listened!!
This may seem like a no brainer, but being in the system as long as I have, along with back ground of working in the NHS, I’ve learnt this isn’t always the case! Especially when you suffer from an invisible illness. I’ve actually been discharged from one Drs list because I refused to take ibuprofen for the pain even though I explained that I can’t take Nsaids because of the crohns! The Dr wrote to my GP saying I couldn’t be in as much pain as I stated because I refused his treatment plan! This is common for those of us who hide our issues deep inside!
In October I saw a neurologist. She’s sending me for more tests but she listened to me and spent time with me and I walked away with a new pain-killer (not opiate based!), a change in my basic meds (reduced my Amitryptaline and added an SSRI, sertraline, into my arsenal) and a rough understanding of what could be causing the issues!
It took about 10 days to adjust to the new med regime but by Christmas 2016 I was walking without my walking stick! I was taking Lola for longer walks and I was thinking about the future! It hasn’t been a miracle, I’m still in pain and have realised that it doesn’t take a lot to increase my pain levels. A dance in the park will knacker me…but I’m dancing in the dog park again!! I’m now at a place in this chapter of my life where I can start thinking happy again!
So its time to start shifting this weight again! I’ve increased my nutrients by making smoothies, for the 1st time in my life I’ve actually had spinach! My biggest issue though is my inability to eat foods that are good for me! I don’t eat fatty foods, I don’t handle carbs or fibre very well so that’s limited and the foods I can eat aren’t that good for me! I could see no way of losing the weight!
My GP has been in talks with my GI though and they’ve both ok’d me to start on Orlistat. The only prescription Diet pill!
Today is the 18th January 2017. Today I started Orlistat!
21st Jan I’m having a full spinal and brain MRI to see if my issues are Neuropathic!
Today I danced in the park, ran with the dog and did over 10000 steps. To me this is immense!
I’m hoping this can help me with this blog as well! My plan is to try to record my journey on here, with anyone that wants to follow me and help me as a search of the all-knowing world-wide web has so far given me nothing in regards to an ostomate taking orlistat! I don’t believe I’m the first!
Hopefully tomorrow will see me in the same frame of mind. If all is good then I’ll put up my progress from today and tomorrow with some pix and my measurements etc!
Today I get to do another life Re-set!