Life has a funny of way of going off course when you least expect it. One minute everything is humming along and the next minute you find yourself in a tailspin. That was my life just a couple of weeks ago.
Back when I was pregnant with my children I was diagnosed both times with gestational diabetes. I was very strict with my diet and did everything I could to make sure that my children were born healthy and without issues. Both times after delivery my GD went away and I was back to my old self however, I knew that down the road I was at a higher risk of developing pre-diabetes or worse, Type 2. As with many things in life, even though you KNOW the risks you sometimes put those aside and carry on in the hopes that you’ll be fine and not have to worry about them. But then, life throws you a curve ball.
I hadn’t been feeling great for a week or two and I was noticing some unusual things with myself such as an increased thirst, frequent urination, feeling more tired than normal, and slightly blurry vision when reading small print. Independently I wouldn’t have thought much of either one of these but the fact that they were occurring together started to raise a red flag. I knew what to look for when it came to high blood sugar so on a whim, I decided to test my sugars to see if something was going on. Up until that point my sugars had been in the normal range and all seemed fine with my health but then I saw 328 flash on my glucose monitor HOURS after having eaten and I almost fell on the floor! Just as reference, a normal person should be under 140 two hours after eating. Here I was probably 8 hours after eating and I was in the 300’s. Not good. Not good AT ALL.
My first reaction was panic. My second reaction was panic. And well, my third reaction was panic. I felt like I couldn’t catch my breath. I was so nervous that my sugars would go even higher and if they did, I knew I ran the risk of feeling worse. I felt completely out of control, like I was in a tailspin with no way out. At first, I didn’t say anything to anyone, not even my husband who I share EVERYTHING with because I was afraid I would panic him. I also felt like if I said it out loud it would make it real and I really wanted to be wrong about this. I really wanted to live in denial for just a bit longer. By the next night after tossing and turning, crying in private, and panicking all day I finally told him. In hindsight, I wish I did it right away because being able to talk with him about it and cry on his shoulder was the only thing that started to finally calm me down. I am so thankful to have him to lean on, he’s my rock, and he got me through the panic so that I could take the steps needed to fix this.
I was faced with two choices, fight or flight. I wasn’t going to take this lying down or put my head in the sand about what was happening so I made the decision to immediately overhaul my diet, it was the best (and only) thing I could do to make a quick change. I cut out white flour and sugar, all junk food, and anything processed. I ate lean proteins, plenty of veggies and fruit, and I drank nothing but ice water. I started to feel better almost right away. I also saw my endocrinologist who put me back on Metformin to help to bring my sugars down and control them. Surprisingly, within just 4-5 days I had dropped five pounds and my sugars were coming down little by little. It was such a relief and it felt great to start to feel in control again. Making the immediate changes that were necessary to protect my health was the smartest thing I could’ve done and now just a few weeks later, I’m feeling better and still doing everything I can to get myself healthy for myself, my husband, and my children.
I consider this my wake-up call. I am 42, not getting any younger, and I can’t afford to neglect my health. So as part of these lifestyle changes I’ve also decided to join a gym because regular exercise is a great way to keep your sugars in check. I’m also overhauling how I cook because I can do better in the kitchen. That doesn’t mean that all sweets and goodies are forever off-limits, it just means that they need to be more of an occasional treat instead of an everyday thing. I want to set a good example for my kids and keep them and my husband healthy too! We’re in this as a family so together we’re trying new foods, new recipes, and new mindsets about the food we eat. I know it won’t be easy but it will be worth it.
Going forward my blog will still include lots of yummy indulgences and goodies but it will also feature lighter, healthier treats and meals too! Whether you have a health issue or not, everyone can benefit from making better food choices. I feel like I was lucky in that I recognized the signs and was able to catch this early so now I have a second chance to do better and that’s exactly what I plan to do! This curve ball was what I needed to realize that it’s time I take care of me because I don’t want this ride to end. I want to be around for every minute and every moment with my kids and I want to be 100 years old sitting on a rocking chair with my amazing husband and looking back on the awesome life we had together. So with that said, here’s to trying new things, doing better, and making a change!!