Monday, January 31, 2011

202 to 188: 'Condensed' Pt. 3

Where was I? Hmmm . . . IMPROVING!!! So what can I report? Let's address the title first, shall we? 202 to 188. Random numbers? Nope. I'm proud to announce they are pounds people! Pounds, I say! Before leaving for the ATL I weighed in at a hefty 202 lbs.

Just to give you a baseline - my first prom dress was a size 3. I was an athlete in high school. Still fit in college. Then at 21, I remember feeling embarrassed that my wedding dress was a size 10. I weighed 140 at the time. The most I'd ever weighed. Ever.

Enter MS and the kiddos . . . and the POUNDS. I really can't complain as I have been lucky enuff to maintain right around 200. Steroid use due to exacerbations would rocket me up to near 220, but that has been my all time high. I've always eaten what I wanted - still do.

Trouble has been my darned inactivity. Lack of energy. Lack of ability. Grrrrrrr! MS sux! So I get LIBERATED. Have I joined a gym? No. Doing rehab? No. Insurance wouldn't pay, remember? And my docs don't believe I need therapy just out of the blue. Anyways . . .

So I've been feeling better. So much so, people are noticing. "You look good." "You are smiling more, Angela." "Your color is better." I told you about the guy at church asking me if I'd gotten taller, right? And my favorite compliment thus far: "You losin' weight?"

Welllll surely not. I wasn't doing therapy or working out or eating healthier. If anything, thanks to my reawakened taste buds, I'd been eating more. So I'd reply, "Nah. Just feelin' better, but thanks." Or, "Nah. Just wearin' bigger pants." Ha! Yeh, I know, sad attempt at being funny.

Then I try to get in the truck the other day and can't lift my leg. Oh no! Was the MonSter back? Whoops! Long story, short - welllll, thank the good Lord and my Momma 'cause my ass was all them bad boys was hangin' on. Huh? Those once perfect fittin' jeans gave a whole new meaning to ridin' low. Too many more steps they'd surely have wound up 'round my ankles.

Maybe I had been losin' weight. There's that word again - MAYBE. So I'm at my Mom's for dinner and there sits her fancy new scales. "Do you mind if I try those out, Mom?" Up, up and "WHAT? That can't be right." 188. Ta da. Another LIBERATION miracle. Hmmm . . . must be 'cause I'm able to be more active. Not alot, but apparently every little bit counts.

Just imagine what I could accomplish if I worked at it. Ahhhh, yeh. But this entry isn't about my future. This is about now! So what else is going on? Let's make a list, shall we? Where to start? Where to start? I mentioned taste, right?

1. Taste is revived. Some stuff I don't like as well. Some I like more. Eat! Eat! Eat! And swallowing is easier too. Knock on wood - not once have I choked since LIBERATION. I'm even swallowing pills easier. (Ahhh, pills! A perfect segway to my next improvement.)

2. I've been off of my Provigil for 1 month. Thanks in part to my new insurance requiring prior authorization and in part for the med being $600 a month for cash paying customers - long story short - I chose to wait it out. And low and behold - I made it. A couple innocent little naps here and there, but by golly, I MADE IT! Up w/out uppers! Yeehaw!

[Sidenote: Now I'm struggling with whether or not to start them back up. Not because I NEED them but because I can't help but think they'd make me feel even better. Make me more productive. A better me perhaps. Just sayin'. Dunno. Jury's out. Maybe just half. Or maybe every other day. Any thoughts?]

3. SHOWERING!!! The jury didn't even have to deliberate on this one. Yes, Todd, I'm sure the water bill has skyrocketed but my bathing daily, as Ms. Martha Stewart would say, "It's a good thing." And why is it special? Isn't there some unspoken rule that bathing daily is just what people do? Well if you hadn't picked up on it yet I'm just gonna come out and say it. I didn't!

I used to dread it. It would zap me of all energy. Even sitting in a chair, yeh. Sad, sad ordeal. Just the act of undressing. Soaping. Standing to rinse. Drying off. Dressing again. Killer! Shampooing? Hated it. And thus didn't even do it every time I'd shower. Nasty, I know. But think about it. It's more sad than nasty. And then there was making my way outta the bathroom to drop like a ton of bricks and not be able to function for hours afterwards.

And speaking of dropping. Nevermind all the wet slippery circumstances prime for falling. Nobody who falls in perfectly safe conditions ever goes enthusiastically into a more precarious environment. Just sayin' . . . until now! Now I look forward to it. I even stand a great deal of the time. And I can put my head back to rinse my hair. That is a luxury I'd forgotten about, my friends. I'd been rinsing from a chair, head down facing the floor for much too long.

Opening of the shampoo and soap bottles is going better too. I don't need help people! Do you hear me? Drying off is easier too. Standing and drying outside of the shower is much more time effective and efficient than attempting to dry while sitting inside on my chair. (And yes, I do turn the water off first.) Drum roll please!

I have energy after I shower! I can dress. I can stand to brush my teeth. Yeh, you heard me, STAND! And then leave the bathroom and do something else. Get a snack in the kitchen. Shoot some pool. Watch some TV. Or get this people . . . you sittin' down? Dry my hair! That's just crazy, heh? Actually on purpose applying heat to oneself. Suicide, right? Not anymore!

So I'm "all gussied up" as my Dad used to say. And no where to go? Huh? Here's a shocker for ya - I feel like going out. And I have been. Guess what. Walking better = not worrying about falling or embarrassing anyone. Yippee!

4. WALKING! No walker. No cane. And, yeh, I may be just a bit taller. I still waddle, sure, and at times could pass for drunk, but the point here is - I AM WALKING!!! Yes, everywhere! With a hand up and down curbs. And with just one hand on the railing - the stairs! Walking up and down the stairs y'all. Hear me? Not crawling. Not struggling. WALKING, I said!

5. Dancing.
6. Driving.
7. Staying up later.
8. Getting up earlier.
9. Baking.
10. And what kinda writer would I be if I didn't leave a little sumthin' sumthin' for your imagination? Suffice it to say there have been improvements even where improvements weren't needed. Yeh, take that and let your mind wander. EVERYTHING IS BETTER. EVERYTHING!!!

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