Single Mom Slice of Change:
The First 3 Weeks


OK, so when we last left off, I had been diagnosed with malignant hypertension after having been admitted into the hospital with a blood pressure reading of 249 over 156 leading to the life changing realization that my life is about to change.

In the weeks since, the change in life has been… one hell of a chaotic roller coaster ride. I wanted to sing the praises of a new found love of life and lifestyle, brag about the amazing changes… but reality set in, got comfy, and let out a big giant fart.

Week 1

I was slow and sluggish. My body was still trying to regulate itself after having no drugs, IV drugs, and then hospital prescribed drugs. My stomach was a mess, my memory was shot, and my arms were bruised for days as a parting gift from the hospital.

My first doctor appointment was rather disappointing. It turns out the hospital released me with a blood pressure medicine that was the equivalent of baby aspirin. So when they took my pressure again, it had come down, but was still reading 177 over 115.

Yeah, it was down, but still not better. Nor was my weight. Sure, it had at that point only been a week, but I wanted the magical world of instant weight loss… despite the fact that I wasn’t active yet, but more importantly I just wasn’t hungry. It’s hard to get energy, get active, and lose weight when you sleep through most of your meals.

Related: Our Story Begins: It’s Time to Take Care of You!

Week 2

I think the best way to describe week 2 was I was just so angry. Slowly family and friends were starting to learn of my hospital stay and every single one of them had something to day. Everyone has a book, a lesson, a lecture, a recipe, and a workout regimen that is guaranteed to make the weight just “fall off”. But that was just annoying, that’s not what made me angry.

What made me angry was being forced to acknowledge that I was worse off than I originally thought. During the previous week’s doctor’s visit I had left me with four new medications, an order for a kidney scan, blood work, and a request for an echocardiogram.

Why all the meds? Well, a blood pressure med that works, plus a water pill, a potassium pill and a magnesium pill.

Why all the tests? That’s because when you have high blood pressure and let it go unchecked for years it doesn’t just damage your heart, but your other organs as well. The kidney scan would be to check and see if I killed my kidney and not just my waistline.

On the other hand, my energy level was starting to come back. I could spend a full day at work without requiring a nap, I could eat all my meals in a day, and by the weekend, my anger became just good old fashioned irritation. Oh – and I was down 4 pounds.

Related: Monday Morning Motivation: Are You Stuck In A Comfortable Rut?

Week 3

… also known as the week of Christmas. Two days of force feeding myself healthy broccoli, chicken, sweet potatoes and salmon does no good when in one week there are three holiday parties that have fried, sugared, or cream based dishes… and in case you forgot from my last post… I’m a food addict.

My kidneys are fine – yay! My blood pressure has continued to drop. By last doctor’s visit (because I’m doing one a week at this point) my pressure was 115 over 86. My potassium is still low as is my magnesium.

But for each step forward is, not really a step back, but a reminder of how real this all is. The kidneys, cholesterol, and blood sugars are all fine. However, my thyroid numbers are anything but. So… more bloodwork, more tests, and my heart is still damaged.

Suddenly, all those double cheeseburgers don’t seem like they were worth it.

So, my story continues.  Clearly, it won’t all be sunshine and unicorn glitter… but if I’m sharing my story, I’m still moving forward, and forward motion is always a good thing. Now that the holidays (a food addict’s worst nightmare), a last minute road trip, and all the bad food in the house are behind us, I’m moving forward.