Blog: Transition to Healthy Living
by annakb

My Foundation

Where my past has led me-

Date:   6/6/2005 4:56:25 PM   ( 15 y ) ... viewed 1775 times

Background:

Before we can move forward, we must first establish where we are and where we have been. Thus it becomes necessary to outline my lifestyle and health to this point to determine where the problems lie.

My initial and constant issue is my weight. I was born overweight to overweight parents and have continued this trend through adulthood. I participated regularly in sports beginning with summer league t-ball and softball when I was 5, then YMCA summer basketball until I was old enough to start school sports, which I participated in volleyball, basketball, track, and then summer softball. I also joined cheerleading my 8th and 9th grade years. It is important to note here that my weight has never dipped below 200 lb since I was 12 years of age and reached my full height. My family was poor so my diet was incredibly unhealthy – lots of pastas, processed meats, crackers, bread, very few vegetables, very little full muscle or lean meats, lots of hamburger, potatoes, frozen French fries, frozen breaded products, and virtually no seafood. We did not keep soft drinks on hand, but we went through about a gallon per person of low-fat milk per week and drank well-water or instant iced tea. The food was never good quality, but we always had as much as we wanted. I believe that food was also used emotionally as I was growing up, we were fed favorite food items as reward, and made to “run-laps-around-the-house” as discipline. When I was not participating in sports, I engaged in the favorite past-time at my house…watching TV.

I converted to a vegetarian diet when I was 16 years old, began birth control, and broke my ankle while sledding that year, and have not participated in sports ever since. After discontinuing sports I began taking Prozac to help with my depression and during the summer that year I had my first surgery as an emergency abdominal exploratory to remove a large (basketball sized) cyst from my ovary which had ruptured (at which time they took my appendix as well). Within the space of 2 years I gained 85 lb and waged a constant battle with depression. My college career ended with a mental breakdown after half a year and several odd jobs. About a year and a half later I was in the hospital once again this time with pneumonia which was not showing up on x-rays, so the doctors decided to do another abdominal exploratory … on what evidence I have no idea. By this time I was 40 pounds heavier than I was even at my high school graduation, and I ended up in the hospital for 10 days with life-threatening double pneumonia and a 16” surgical wound from the exploratory. Fortunately the hospital wrote-off the cost of this surgery since I was currently without medical insurance. A month later during a follow-up session I was again cut due to infection which was left open to drain. 3 weeks later another emergency surgery was performed since the infection had tunneled throughout my abdomen. This again was left open to drain, however my abdominal cavity wall was breached and I began to lose abdominal fluid and was restricted to my bed for a total of 3 weeks. As testament to my ordeal, I sport an enormous scar roughly the size of a football 3 inches deep in the flesh of my abdomen.

During my healing process after my final surgery I began the Atkins diet. It was very easy for me to stick to and (with the healing process) helped me to lose a total of 95 lb in 3 months, which I kept off for 2 years.

When I became pregnant I used it as license to eat whatever I wanted, I had a lot of complications due to the scar tissue and ended up resigning from my job since my doctor once again prescribed bed rest to alleviate the bleeding and contractions. My daughter was born healthy 3 weeks early after 53 hours of labor and I was a full 85 pounds heavier than I had been when I got pregnant. I had planned to breastfeed however, my milk didn’t come in for a full week after she was born and depression set in after the first day. I also have flat nipples and it was such a fight to get my daughter to latch on that after 2 weeks I just gave up. I began a new (and very stressful) job at 8 weeks, and have gained another 85 lb in the 2 ½ years I have been working this job. I now have other problems including a rash that can’t be explained by my doctor that nothing seems to cure, menstrual problems, a cyst on my wrist, migraine headaches, and have been trying to conceive a child for the last 2 years with no success.

So, here is my foundation. All future endeavors will build on this.

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Comments (4 of 4):
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