6-Month Follow-up

Hi!   Now that it’s been 6 months since my surgeries, it’s time for a  follow-up.  First, I apologize for the rather long hiatus (so sorry!).   I guess I haven’t had much to report… that and I’ve been trying to find a way to post updates without forcing you all to attend a pity party (miniature violins not included).  But things have been getting back to “new normal” – which admittedly isn’t as awesome as the “old normal” was.

Back in Feb. I went back to Dr. Fact’s because I still had swelling under my chin.  I was sporting a turkey wattle and it was less than flattering (esp. considering all I went through to NOT have a wattle!).   He injected cortisone into my pouch and though I was skeptical the following weeks, it seems to have taken care of it (yay!).

In early April I saw my endocrinologist to have my thyroid levels checked and they were within normal range , meaning I was officially no longer hypothyroid (whoo hoo!)   Every morning around 5:30amish I pop a tiny pill of synthetic hormone.  Taking the pill isn’t a big deal, except on the weekends, but thankfully I have my kids to reliably wake me at dawn.   But I need to fast for at least an hour afterwards, and I didn’t realize how hungry I would get if told I couldn’t eat!   Nothing but water to start the day…..needless to say my first hour at work from 6am-7am isn’t always my most productive;  I basically sit salivating on my keyboard watching the clock click minute to minute.

Aside from that, the biggest change has been loosing the love of my one and only hobby, working out.   Now I realize for most people having a love addiction with the gym is like  seeking out traffic, but for those who have crossed from casual gym goer to full-on gym rat, you get me.   For decades working out was what I “did” – how I spent nearly all of my free time and vacations.   I loved anything active, hiking, running, biking, yoga, weights, cardio, swimming laps.  I worked out the day I delivered my babies and was back at it within two weeks of their births.   I loved how I looked and I loved how I felt.  But sadly, you can’t save up fitness.

Last year I did my best to keep up.  I dragged my tired, sick ass to the gym and watched sadly as I just couldn’t keep up anymore.   I started to put on weight and seemingly new body parts started to grow that I had never seen before.  I was discouraged, but there wasn’t much I could do about it.

So in Jan. I resolved to get myself back.  I was determined to be one of those cases were they just “bounced back really fast” – surely I deserved it, right? I was unfortunately dead wrong.   At first, I was discouraged by all the little changes….how I looked in my work-out clothes, the bright red scars visible to the world, my lack of strength and stamina, how the pain in my left ear made it uncomfortable to wear ear buds or a headset, how whenever I tired to exercise on my back or do abdominals, my esophagus seemed to be chocked by scar tissue and I would break out into a hacking couch.  Yep, I was that awkward self-conscious person looking around suspiciously and breaking out into coughing spells – not who you want on the elliptical next to you. In a matter of months I had lost what had taken me years to develop and it hurt, still hurts.

Not to say I’ve given up (now that would just be plain stupid!).  I’m still trying to drag myself to the gym 5 days a week, as work allows.   I set up my equipment right at the very front of the class and face the mirror so I can’t hide.  I look into my eyes and tell myself that I can do this….right after asking myself what the heck is bulging over my hips and why  I didn’t shave my underarms the previous night?   I laugh at myself when I screw-up or fail when I shouldn’t – because nothing makes someone appear more sane than giggling at their own reflection in a public forum. So to all those who have the pleasure of working out with me – I know I’m the awkward one, but I’m trying.  Really trying here.  And maybe some day I’ll be back…..well, maybe if I wasn’t so old.

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