Sunday, October 13, 2013

Taking Care of Me for a Change

It's the scenario we hear all the time.  Moms taking care of everyone else and not herself.  I admit that I'm definitely one of those.  Not only my family, but others in my community.  Doing for others, and not for myself.  I recently backed off from a lot of the volunteer commitments I had made and have been trying to focus on myself for a change.  As you may or may not know, I'm a type 2 diabetic.  It's been a struggle for me since I was 24 years old when I first was diagnosed with gestational diabetes while pregnant with my oldest.  Health psychology and my inability to adhere to medical advice has been a definite struggle as well, and I'm trying my best to tackle them with a more positive outlook.

For instance, I was recently diagnosed with dysthymia.  It's a low grade chronic depression, and it's suspected I've had it since I was a teen.  I can definitely look back over the years and agree with that.  I've never been diagnosed or treated for depression, although I have suspected it.  Not only does it affect my mood, but it affects the way I care for myself.  This is something that I need to start being proactive about because it's affecting my attitude toward my diabetes.  I have to push the "don't give a crap" attitude and start taking care of myself and staying on top of my meds and exercise.

Secondly, there is the fact that while getting my body back on track, the Metformin messes with me, and I have almost all the side effects, minus the headaches:

  • Diarrhea -- occurring in up to 53.2 percent of people
  • Nausea or vomiting -- in up to 25.5 percent
  • Gas -- in up to 12.1 percent
  • Weakness -- in up to 9.2 percent
  • Indigestion -- in up to 7.1 percent
  • Abdominal discomfort (or stomach discomfort) -- in up to 6.4 percent
  • Headache -- in up to 5.7 percent.

This is not fun, and ironically, I had my Health Psychology class last semester, and it made me recognize one of the reasons I don't adhere to my medication is that my mind and body would rather deal with the long term unseen effects of diabetes than deal with the very real symptoms and side effects from my medication.  True that over time, these side effects will slowly fade away, but I just had the week from hell while my body adjusted, and I missed out on some good times with friends and family this weekend.  I need to start dealing with the immediate and get past my own self so that I can live a healthier lifestyle and prolong my life here on earth for my boys.  

I just reached 40 years in August, and I would love to have 40 more.  I won't be able to do that on the path I've been choosing.  There are so many people out there that inspire me.  Recently my friend Carrie, as I've seen her on her journey on a return to health and happiness, and I realized that no matter how much I may fail at my attempts to get back on my own track of those things, I need to keep getting back up and not let it keep me down.  

It's a struggle, but I can't let it get the best of me.  I have to rise up and overcome.  I have to start focusing on me for a change.  I have to start saying "no" so that I can say "yes" to life and longevity.