Friday, August 30, 2013

School, Work, Life

Well, Life is happening. My past few days have been jam-packed, as in leaving my apartment in the morning and not getting home until 12+ hours later. Between school starting, work, meetings, trying to make new friends, tutoring, etc...not a whole lot of free time anymore! I am taking five classes and working two jobs, so that's maybe unwise in the name of moderation and self-care and all that good stuff—but, I've never really been one for moderation. And for now, I'm loving it all. Just don't want to feel like life is passing me by anymore, you know?

In my masters program, you don't come in with an adviser already chosen, and the first semester is mostly core coursework. But after having such a fantastic research experience with my thesis adviser last year, I decided that I was going to be pushy and find someone to be my mentor early on. Guess I lucked out, because I found someone willing to work with me pretty easily (the young professor I mentioned in my last post). I met with him yesterday, and he seems awesome. He has a few interesting projects going on, and wants to get me as involved in the data analysis/manuscript-writing process as soon as possible. #nerdexcitement

So, things are moving in positive directions all around. Can't believe this was me two weeks ago. Actually I can, because my memory of feeling like that is still so raw and real. But it's more that I can't believe how I've been able to jump into school and hit the ground running despite that, if it makes sense. I tell myself that I am only able to handle things right now and feel optimistic because my pain has been improved for the past week or so, but maybe it's the other way around. Maybe feeling optimistic has allowed me to put the pain aside in my brain and concentrate on the world around me.

Anyway, what I've been up to:
School, obviously—Classes started this week and I've had four of my five so far—all seem good! Lots of work, but interesting. I had been worried that the masters program wouldn't be as academically rigorous or engaging as undergrad, but so far I'm pleasantly surprised. It's nice to be around smart people again. I had to e-mail one of my professors about missing a class in October, when I'm flying home to see Dr. A, and she was completely understanding and very sweet about it.
Work—I haven't been working very many hours since classes started, which is unfortunate because my income has dipped significantly and bills are due this week...oops. Luckily I now have a better handle on my schedule, plus the added hours from Job #2, which will hopefully be enough to pull my net worth out of the red.
Friends—Well, let's be honest; school just started and I don't have a lot of friends yet. But I have lots of friendly acquaintances from classes, and I almost always have someone to eat lunch with and chit-chat with during down time. I also have some friends from undergrad who are here at the law school or the medical school, so I know a decent number of people on campus. Helps to feel more connected and less alone.
Therapy—I am back to seeing Dr. P weekly after bumping it up for a couple weeks earlier this month. Things are going well and I really feel able to talk about stuff openly and honestly. I've marveled about this before, but I've never felt like that in therapy before.
Health—Knock on wood, I'm still doing okay. My eyes are great and my pain is improved...for however long that lasts. I feel better having the appointment with Dr. A lined up in a couple months. I am also going back to see this doctor from last fall (oh shit! Now I have two Dr. P's! Gotta think about this one...) in September to hopefully renew my order for PT and get another perspective. Just gotta keep plugging along...

Okey doke, I'm getting a computer headache. Think I've covered the major areas, but if anyone has any burning questions about my rockstar lifestyle, please feel free to ask! Happy Friday, everyone.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013


I had a really interesting day yesterday. Partly, because it was so busy and involved lots of driving in circles searching for parking spots, trekking around campus in 95-degree weather, and being flustered. But, everything worked out according to plan.

7:00am - Wake up, drink coffee.
7:15am - Walk to gym, bike for XX minutes, walk home.
8:00am - Shower, eat breakfast, get dressed, guzzle more coffee.
9:00am - Drive to campus transportation office to pick up parking pass.
10:00am - Tutoring on campus.
11:00am - Pick up sandwich for lunch, walk to Grad Program Building to print resumes, scarf down sandwich, try to make myself presentable.
12:00pm - Mingle awkwardly at job fair; shove resumes at people.
1:00pm - Drive to Other Campus for work.
2:30pm - Leave work, drive back to Main Campus for a meeting with a professor.
3:30pm - Back to my office on Other Campus for more work.
3:35pm - Realize I have a CRIPPLING headache. Buy a cup of coffee from the vending machine, guzzle, still have headache, realize I left my Excedrin at home, curse.
6:30pm - Drive home, collapse.
8:30pm - Wake up, discover I have nothing for dinner, curse some more, make a pb&j, wonder when I will become a grown-up and start cooking grown-up food.
10:30pm - Try to finish my reading for class tomorrow...instead, end up taking a little pre-bedtime snooze on the couch.
12:00am - Bedtime for real.

Days like these usually stress me out beyond belief because of so many moving parts and so many possibilities for error/lateness/etc., but I actually had a GREAT day. I think I got myself a good work-study position (in addition to my current, non-work study job) doing research with a youngish but super  smart, enthusiastic professor. In my short experience in graduate school, I have learned that tenure-track faculty are excellent employers because they want to publish as much as possible—and need help doing it. Which means, there are lots of opportunities to get your name on one of their papers.

But the real reason things went so smoothly is because I was essentially pain-free. It was amazing—I've been feeling better the past week or so, which makes sense because I always feel better for a few days before my period and then usually the first couple days of my period, but I always have some pain. But seriously yesterday, the majority of the time I felt completely fine. It was the last day of my period too, so it seems like the good phases are lasting longer and longer each month.

You'd think I could just enjoy it and be thrilled and grateful, right? No...instead, I panicked. It just seemed too good to be true, you know? I started dreading the inevitable moment when things would go downhill again and all my hopes would be totally dashed. After I got home, I spent the evening worrying about how my brain would cope with the disappointment. Because that's basically what happened last month, and clearly I did not handle it well.

Anyways, I'm trying really hard to stay optimistic and just be grateful that I've had a string of good days—a longer string than usual, which can only be an encouraging sign long-term. And maybe the best part is that I am finally getting really excited about school and work and the future. It's been a while since I let myself feel that way, and it makes such a difference in how I see the world around me.

Sunday, August 25, 2013

End of Summer Updates

Classes start this week, so I guess today is my last official day of summer. Tomorrow is going to be a doozy, between tutoring, work, big campus event, and meeting with a professor, but I think I've got the schedule figured out in a way that will be manageable, albeit will involve lots of driving in circles.

I almost called the cops on my neighbors yesterday—a bunch of fratty-frat undergrad boys have moved into the building adjacent to mine, and have taken to sprawling all over the communal front steps/entrance area, meaning that everyone in the complex can hear their rabble-rousing and has to climb over them to get in or out. In the end I decided to suck it up and let them have their fun for their first weekend in town...but rest assured that I have grown cranky in my old age and will NOT stand for this all semester.

damn kids

I have discovered the magic of heating pads. I don't know if this is from leaning over a computer all day or if I'm just prone to tight shoulders, but my neck/upper back/shoulder blade area is literally riddled with muscle knots—the kind where you could sit there and knead it with your fingers all day long to no avail. Sometimes my shoulders blades will randomly seize up with no warning and I have to hobble around like a hunchback until things crack back into place. Anyway, someone suggested that might be related to my headaches and that I should try a heating pad to loosen everything up. I've only used it once but oh lordy it feels good, even when it's 95 degrees out! Can't wait to curl up under that thing in the winter.


I made another appointment with Dr. A in October. The last time I saw him, it looked like things were pretty much under control and would just take time for the pain to subside. But, with everything that has happened this summer and with how I'm still feeling physically, plus with the fact that Big Northern City Doctor won't make space for me for another five months, I decided that I don't trust anyone with this stuff more than I trust Dr. A. Since the last appointment, I've been putting off calling him again because I didn't want to seem doubtful or needy or paranoid, but you know what, I'm a young person with a life I'd like to live, and the pain is still getting in the way of that. It's okay for me to decide that I Am Not Making It and still need help. If things miraculously improve in the next two months, then I'll cancel the appointment and get down on my knees thanking God that Dr. A was right all along and time really was the cure.

Okay, I've got some cleaning/reading/sun-soaking to do. Happy Sunday, everyone, and hope all the students are kicking off a great semester. 

Friday, August 23, 2013

Diagnostic Overshadowing

When Doctors Discriminate.

The example in the article is bipolar disorder, although I would argue that patients with anorexia face an especially tricky path because of the physical nature of their illness. When an anorexic patient shows up at the doctor's office, it's nearly impossible to determine where the mental illness ends and the physical illness begins—and most non-ED specialists have no clue where to start.

The medical world (in the US, that is) tries its damnedest to keep the body and brain separate, and good luck trying to get treated for a medical issue once you've been labeled a loon. The simple fact of the matter is that patients with mental illnesses are still often seen as willfully deranged, whatever that even means. Stop acting like a crazy person, and we'll stop treating you like one.

Grr. It makes me SO MAD. I went to the student health center on campus once for an EKG because my heart was skipping, and the nurse refused to do it. She saw "anorexia" stamped on my file and told me—this is a direct quote—"We can't help you until you help yourself." That bitch is lucky I didn't, you know, die.

About a year later I went back for a referral to a gastroenterologist because of tummy troubles (and a family history of colon cancer) and was, yet again, dismissed.

It's no use getting bitter about this stuff now, but I guess I'm glad to see the problem acknowledged.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Hormonally Challenged: Zits, Cramps, Moods, and Boobs

I'm about to complain about something shallow and dumb, so, sorry. But WHY at 22 years old do I have worse skin than I did at 12? It's like my hormones went to sleep for ten years and suddenly decided to wake up and go fucking nuts. I don't have terrible acne or anything so I really shouldn't be whining about this, but it sucks to go schmooze at grown-up grad school events feeling like a preteen. I know that it must be related to weight-restoration and regaining my periods and all that, but gosh I'm over it. In fact, my skin had never been clearer than when I was underweight, restricting, and amenorrheic. Probably because my skin was super dry and unhealthy, but STILL. As soon as I started gaining weight and getting healthier, zits started happening. Really hoping this is one of those icky post-anorexia things that just takes waiting it out until everything regulates and settles down.

Other girly issues that haven't been a problem for me in years:

—CRAMPS. I used to think girls who bitched about cramps were exaggerating, because I never had bad ones as a teenager. In the last year, though, the week before my period is like getting slugged with a ton of bricks in my uterus.

—Moods. Again, never had PMS moodiness until my periods restarted last summer. Now, I turn into an emotional wreck twice a month: mid-cycle and right before my period. It has taken me a while to pick up on the pattern, since my moods are also very much related to my pain levels, which are ALSO very much related to my cycle, and there are a ton of other extenuating factors.

—Boobs. I've written about this before (and it remains one of my most-searched posts, you filthy pervs) but my body proportions have totally changed with weight-gain this time around: aka, I actually have boobs now. I've been a 32A my whole life until about six months ago when I abruptly went up a cup size.

Here's to Puberty: Round 2 wrapping up sometime in the near future. It was no fun the first time around, and WAY LESS FUN the second. At least I don't have to go through middle school again too.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Notes from Orientation

I am in the midst of the World's Longest Orientation so am pretty exhausted, but wanted to give an update. Yet again, my moods are doing the crazy cycling thing—maybe PMS? My period is due in the next week or so. Anyway, I woke up Sunday feeling super shitty for no apparent reason. Just one of those random days where all I felt like doing was crying. Depression scares me the most when it doesn't have an obvious cause. Usually I can pinpoint something—the pain, ED stuff, loneliness, etc.—that might have made my brain switch to Unhappy Mode, but sometimes the depression seems totally unrelated to anything external. That's when I worry about what's wrong with my brain, and what will happen if I finally get all the health stuff resolved but am still miserable. But, we'll worry about that when it happens.

So anyway, I was having a really down day on Sunday until it was time to meet my friend C for coffee. We met last summer at my internship and totally hit it off. She went to college at a small school up north, but is now back living with her parents in College City. So, she isn't thrilled to be stuck here but I'm glad to have her! Anyway, we met up around 3pm and didn't leave for four hours. And you know what? I totally snapped out of my funk. I came home feeling refreshed and okay and not alone.

Monday, I was nervous for orientation. Not really nervous actually, just unexcited and uninterested. I didn't feel like I had the energy to meet new people and be sociable and enthusiastic and impressive. I started having second thoughts about doing the masters program at all, given how unsteady my brain and body still are.

In typical Panicking Kaylee fashion, I called my mom in tears about an hour before I had to leave. My.poor.mother. The crap she puts up with from me—my goodness. Anyways, she talked me down and reassured me that it would be okay, and that if I wasn't up to staying for the full thing the world wouldn't end. So I figured I'd stay for the speeches and maaaayyybe make an appearance at the reception afterwards.

Well, what do you know, the reception ended up being the best part. I met tons of incredibly sweet, friendly, interesting people who all seemed just as nervous to be there as I was. You guys! I might actually make new friends! Today we had a full (FULL) day of curriculum overview and info sessions, and for the first time, I started to get excited about starting school.

I'm a little bit over the jam-packed orientation activities and ready to just get started already, but at least things are looking more manageable than they were the past couple of days.

One not-so-good thing: I got a call from the pain specialty clinic in Big Northern City where I've been trying to schedule an appointment, and their next available appointment is in January. So, that was a bummer. Was really hoping to get some relief before then.

Hope everyone is having a great week.

Sunday, August 18, 2013

By the Numbers

I am bored, nervous for orientation tomorrow, and have an hour to kill before I meet my friend C for coffee—so, some shameless time-wasting:

22 - My age, although according to my mood and the time of day I might feel either ten years older or ten years younger.

3 - Number of addresses I've had in the past year.

$9.25 - How much I get paid per hour. Yeah, totally not worth it. Shouldn't my very expensive bachelor's degree be worth a little more?

5'3" - My height.

8 - My shoe size. Shut up, I'm already self-conscious about it. 

5 - Number of piercings I have (all in my ears...I could never do bellybutton or tongue or anything).

14 - Number of doctors I've seen in the past year.

11 - Number of doctors who didn't do shit for me in the last year. I might be a little bitter.

1 - Number of phones I've dropped in the toilet.

$1,388 - The amount on the bill I just received from my insurance company for a recent round of blood work. Nice try, Insurance Company, but you are paying that.

3 - Number of times I've seen my dad cry: once when my brother was 8 and my dad accidentally slammed his fingers in the car door, once shortly after I was diagnosed with anorexia, and two weeks ago in the hospital.

XXX lbs - My weight. HA! Just kidding. #nottelling

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Inarticulate and Numb

I want to post, but am not really sure what I want to say. I've been in kind of a strange mood the past few days—not depressed or angry or suicidal or anything, just strange. My mom left town yesterday, so I'm back on my own. For the entire time she was here, I was craving my privacy and counting down the days until I'd get it back. But now that she's gone, I miss her.

Things are sort of in a holding pattern at the moment. I'm waiting on test results from my doctor, and I'm waiting for school to start in a couple of weeks. Can't really say that I'm excited or nervous or stressed or anything, but to be honest I'm not feeling a whole lot of anything right now. Sort of ambivalent, I guess. I'll be happy to be a student again, and have more structure to my days.

At the same time, it's hard to imagine starting school. I feel totally disconnected from the world around me. I don't know how to talk to my friends anymore. My phone is usually buzzing nonstop and I am constantly tapping out texts and e-mails and checking my calendar, but lately I've just been putting my phone on silent and forgetting about it. It feels like I've drawn a line in the sand: I am not the same as everyone else. Because I'm still hurt, and because I don't have anything figured out, and because of what I did.

Like I said, I'm not depressed. Just a little bit pensive, a little bit lonely, and little bit sad. I'm trying to make sense of what happened, and where to go from here, and how to make it all mean something.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Moving Forward

THANK YOU to everyone who commented, e-mailed, texted etc. after my last post. It means the world. I am doing much better, mentally and physically, than I was a week ago and feel more ready to face the next few days/weeks/months—whatever it takes to get this horrible pain CURED.

Highlights from the past week:

— My therapist, Dr. P — We had our usual appointment on Tuesday, which was right after I got out of the hospital, and I was predictably unstable. Of course, she was lovely and compassionate and totally understood where I was coming from. She emphasized really strongly that if things ever get as bad as they were last Saturday, I need to CALL HER rather than quietly self-destruct alone in my apartment. I don't know why that was such a revelation to me, to have someone willing to be on call for me, but it made me feel a lot less alone.

— My gynecologist — She doesn't get a letter because she sucks. I don't know why I keep going back to this doctor, except that she is supposedly the College City "expert" on pelvic pain and everyone else refers me to her, but she has done literally NOTHING to help me in two years. Also she is rude, condescending, and ugly (okay, that was unfair. But she still sucks). I've never left an appointment with her not in tears. Someone tell me again why I keep going back? I guess I just always figure that it's so hard to get an appointment anywhere, I might as well go where I can. Desperation will do crazy things to a person.

— My psychiatrist, Dr. L — My mom had scheduled this appointment while I was still in the hospital because she was SO freaked out and didn't really know who else to call. Plus the psychiatrist I had to see in the hospital was a dick and made me feel terrible, so it was kind of a relief to have my beloved Dr. L follow up. That being said, this appointment was kind of mortifying because both my parents came, and the three of us squeezed into Dr. L's tiny office, and my dad couldn't sit because he had thrown out his back, and my mom was just kind of stumbling over her words and not really sure what to say, and I was staring at the ceiling willing myself to disappear through the floor. But Dr. L is a smooth lady and said all the right things to make my parents feel better, and offered to be in e-mail contact with them about any questions or problems.

— My new GP, Dr. C (or Mr. Dr. L, as you may recall) — Again, my parents came and again, it was positively mortifying. On the plus side, he is a wonderful doctor and listened intently to everything we were telling him, took notes, and agreed wholeheartedly with my dad's request for him to be in contact with my uncle (a doctor who has been helping out). While Dr. C admitted that he didn't have any brilliant answers to explain all my medical problems, he was humble and open-minded and seemed to genuinely care about helping me. I had more blood drawn to double check some tests from last week, and he is going to try to get me in to see someone good at University Hospital - probably another rheumatologist, but I'm not sure yet. "I know you're hurting," he told me, and gosh darn it if that didn't make me tear up. I just need someone to know, you know?

My parents have mostly been driving me insane since getting here, and I hate having them all up in my business, but I suppose I should be grateful for all the help. My dad went home Saturday, and my mom is leaving tomorrow. It's a relief to be getting my privacy back, but I gotta admit—it's been nice having her do my grocery shopping and cook me dinner every night.

I don't know why I expected things to just go back to normal right away, and I don't necessarily want them to go back to normal—since I was hurting and in way over my head in terms of handling the medical system, finding doctors, and coping on a daily basis, etc. But still, it's really hard to swallow the fact that my parents, my doctors, my cousins, and my aunts and uncles (at least one or two on both sides of the family....) know what happened, and probably think I'm a certifiable nut job. Guess that can't really be on my list of Top Ten Life Complaints, but it still sucks.

Hope everyone is well.

Saturday, August 10, 2013

The Full Story

JS's comment yesterday made me realize that I never actually said what exactly happened to me. Probably because it's kind of hard to articulate, and I don't fully understand it myself. My pain had been getting steadily worse for several days, and when I got up Saturday it just seemed so entirely unbearable that I started having all those terrible thoughts I used to have about what life would mean to be hurting like this forever. Haven't felt like that in a long time, but it all came back really quickly.

So, I pulled out the stash of Vicodin left over from my wisdom tooth surgery and swallowed just about the entire bottle. Not exactly sure how many pills—more than 10 and less than 20. And I'm not exactly sure what my intention was; I remember thinking that I just wanted to sleep that awful day away and wake up when I felt better. But I did want to wake up.

After a couple of hours, my dad called. I missed it because I was slipping in and out of sleep, but happened to look at my phone and see his name. By this point, I was getting scared. I called him back and told him what happened. He hung up to call 911 and within ten minutes, the paramedics were there.

My time in the hospital was a blur. The ICU was exhausting - no privacy and no quiet, since the rooms aren't really rooms, and are only separated from the main part of the floor by curtains. There were nurses coming in every five minutes to check vitals, draw blood, help me pee (because they were IV-ing gallons of fluids to flush my kidneys...), and lecture me about how everything would be all right and how much I scared everyone. I had needles everywhere, sticky EKG thingies stuck all over my chest and stomach, compression stockings around my calves, and got shots of Heparin in my stomach twice a day to prevent clotting.

I tried to tell everyone what my thinking had been, that I wasn't really trying to hurt myself—and I don't think I was—but of course no one really took me seriously and I classified as a suicide attempt and put on watch. I had a "sitter" assigned to me—that's literally a person who got hired to sit in my room 24 hours a day, even when my parents were there. They removed all trash cans, plastic bags, tables, and anything with sharp edges from the room. It was humbling and mortifying and exhausting. Felt like I was outside myself, watching this happen to someone else.

A psychiatrist came in to evaluate me and determined, thank God, that they didn't need to put me on a 3-day psychiatric hold. So I got to go home as soon as they determined I was medically stable and that my liver wasn't going to disintegrate from the acetaminophen. It took a few days for the horrible nausea to subside, and for my legs to feel stable enough to hold me up. The whole episode seemed to set off another migraine, which has been under control with ibuprofen (imagine that, they wouldn't give me Tylenol...) but it still just won't go away.

I don't really have the energy to fill in everything that has happened since I got home. Basically my parents are here, driving me insane, insisting on accompanying me to all the appointments we made this week, talking about me like my life isn't my own anymore, and generally making me feel like I'm stuck in a tiny glass bubble.

I feel dumb. It was so impulsive. The most impulsive thing I've ever done. I don't want people to think I'm crazy. I'm even nervous about writing about it here, but didn't want to keep everyone in the dark.

I'll write more soon about the appointments I had this week, the good and the bad, and where I'm going to go from here. School starts in a week, and at the moment I'm planning to be there.

Friday, August 9, 2013


Sorry for the break. Things went downhill really fast last week. I got rushed to the emergency room early Saturday morning and spent a couple hours there before being transferred to the ICU. After two nights they moved me to a regular floor, and then finally let me go home late Monday.

My parents flew out to stay with me, but instead of feeling grateful I'm feeling stifled and irritable and depressed. My dad goes home tomorrow, and my mom goes home whenever she decides I'm okay enough for her to leave.

So, that's where I've been all week. I'm still getting my bearings, but I'll be all right.

Friday, August 2, 2013

What a Difference a Good Doctor Makes

I forget if I mentioned this before, but I recently started seeing a new GP. It was getting to the point where I'd seen so many specialists and was still having so many issues, that it was impossible to navigate the healthcare system alone and I needed HELP. I e-mailed my psychiatrist Dr. L, who is an angel sent from heaven and also went to medical school, to ask if she had any recommendations. She responded something like "Well my husband's a GP and I might be a little biased since I'm married to him, but I think he's pretty good. Oh and also he has a PhD in chemistry from Fancy University #1 and an MD from Fancy University #2. And a faculty appointment at the aforementioned Fancy University #2 Medical School. He's pretty smart."

So I called his office the next day and made an appointment, and gosh I'm glad I did. First of all, GPs are WAY EASIER to schedule appointments with than specialists. I got in to see him about two days later, when he spent an hour with me asking questions, taking my history, looking over old records, and brainstorming. I brought him the list of blood tests my uncle had suggested, and while I was afraid New Doctor might be offended, he was instead fascinated. He ordered all the tests and said we'd follow up when the results came back.

He called me this past Monday with the results (super high CPK - in the thousands. Normal range tops out at about 140) and admitted that he had no idea what could be behind it, but was going to think on it and get back to me. So he called later in the week after consulting with a couple specialists he knows, and admitted that he still doesn't have any brilliant answers. The most common condition with high CPK would be muscle diseases (muscular dystrophy, polymyositis), heart attack, or kidney disease—none of which, as far as we can tell, I have any signs. That's good, I guess, right? He suggested more labs to test inflammatory markers and something else that I can't remember. 

I stopped by his office today after work to get the blood drawn—that's twelve vials in ten days, if anyone's counting—and was sitting in the exam room pouting about getting stabbed again and about being a medical mystery when New Doctor knocked on the door and stuck his head in to say hi. Like literally, he was like, "I just wanted to say hi!" We chatted a little bit about The Mysterious Labyrinth of Weirdness That is My Body and about how symptoms like fatigue and pain are nonspecific, elusive, and hard to evaluate. 

I said, "Most doctors think I'm crazy at this point."

He said: "Nah, you're not crazy. Something's up. We'll figure it out."

I finally, finally feel like someone has my back. I am so sick of being the detective; of trying to educate myself and advocate for myself about stuff I don't understand. #doIlooklikeadoctor? Hopefully New Doctor (I can't think of a new initial yet...Male Dr. L? Mr. Dr. L? Sir Dr. L? I'll work on it) will continue to take the lead and pull strings and call in favors and study my case by moonlight in the wee hours so I can finally take a break. At the moment, it's almost enough just to know that he takes me seriously. 

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Resisting Temptations

Wow, August already? That means school starts for me in less than THREE weeks. Kind of incredible how quickly this summer has gone by—and I think it's partly because I've been generally, not-always-but-more-often-than-not, happy. The fatigue, pain, and weight stuff are still kicking my butt, but not devastating me in every way possible like they used to. Don't know how else to describe it, but compared to how fragile and emotionally broken I've felt for most of the past year,  my brain just feels stronger and more resilient.

The whole "exercising moderately" thing has turned out to be way trickier than I imagined. Six-ish months ago when Dr. A made the connection between overexercise, hormone loss, and pelvic atrophy/pain, I was totally gung-ho about taking care of my body and never overexercising again etc. etc. etc. I just assumed that knowing the consequences, any temptation to fall down that hole again would be nonexistent; or at least easily restrained. Not. True. I'm not overexercising at the moment in that the time/intensity of my workouts are nowhere near objectively excessive, but I find myself totally hooked in the old, obsessive ways. Suddenly, my morning feels like a failure if I haven't gone to the gym. Breakfast feels like an indulgence I haven't earned.

So, nipping that in the bud: I am reminding myself of all the reasons that satisfying a short-term anxiety is SO NOT WORTH the potential long-term effects. I am reminding myself that while it may feel like being skinny is a distant memory, I've only recently become weight-restored. A year ago, I was still underweight. I've only been eating beyond a minimal amount of fats for about five or six months. It would be risky and stupid to assume that all the damage is behind me and it's okay to throw myself back into intense workouts again. Really, really stupid.

In the spirit of recovery, I am heading off to accept a VERY impulsive, last-minute dinner invitation from a friend. Happy Thursday everyone!