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Tag Archives: stupid doctors

This is the Part Where I Get Angry

3 Aug

I think everything kind of crashed down on me today. Anticipating tomorrow, and whatever prognosis it will bring, I’ve had a swelling of anxiety, but today at my shrink’s we got to the heart of the matter.

I’m pissed. I’m pissed because just over a year ago today, I had a botched D&C, and I know that’s what started all of this. One doctor, which I trusted, which came highly recommended, who didn’t think to prescribe antibiotics, or make sure that my uterus was left unscarred, caused all of this mess. A 5 minute procedure that has irrevocably altered my life.

I can’t sue him. There’s no way to prove that this was the cause. But I know it is. I know that I had a healthy uterus before this. Healthy enough to hold on to a sac for 8 weeks. An empty sac, but a sac nonetheless.

So I’m scarred. I’m scarred not only physically from those 5 minutes a year ago. I’m scarred mentally, emotionally. This was a doctor I trusted. He came “highly recommended”. He was “the best” in the area.

He fucking messed up my body. And here I am, one year and two additional miscarriages later, about to go under the knife of yet another doctor, who is “the best”, who comes “highly recommended.” Who’s to say everything will go as planned? The last time certainly didn’t. How am I supposed to be calm when the last time I was put under sedation my body was permanently damaged, and my life path was altered forever?

I was supposed to have a baby in my arms by now. Instead, by this time tomorrow, I may have no fallopian tubes. I may have internal organs REMOVED because one fucking doctor didn’t do his job properly. How can I trust that this one will? How can I be calm?

People keep telling me it’s a minimally invasive procedure. So is a D&C, and look where that has brought me.

So I’m pissed. I’m pissed and I’m scared. And I can’t be grateful for “the path” or “answers” right now. All I can do is be bitter and angry at the fact that one incompetent doctor screwed up my body forever. And hope that this doctor will fix the damage, as much as it can be fixed, and not do any more.

This fucking sucks. And I’m fucking pissed off.

I want to make sure this one does the job properly. I want to come out of this with at least part of my fertility intact. And I feel helpless to do anything about it.

Dear readers, you have been so amazing and supportive through all of this. I need you to come through for me one more time. I need your comments, your love, and yes, even prayers. Even as a heathen, I know they can’t hurt. And tell me if I’m forgetting anything. If I should insist on anything being done. If there’s anything I should be asking for to at least try to make sure that no more damage is done.

I go in for the lap in 23 hours. I probably won’t post again before it. If I’m conscious enough after I promise I will, and if not, I may just have Shmerson do it for me.

Thanks. Love you all.

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The Power of Control

6 Jun

First, an update: Ladies and gentlemen, we have a winner! Eggs in a Row got it right in the betting pool.  Spotting started today at noon. So she gets chocolate! Yay! Also – stop by her blog and leave her some love – she had a lap a couple of days ago.

Now on to the down and dirty business of my complete emotional breakdown yesterday. Yep. It was a hoot and a half.

I’ve been on edge for days and days. The fact that AF wasn’t showing up was stressing me out beyond belief, which made me even more stressed because I realized at one point that stressing myself out would make the bitch take her sweet time even more.

Then yesterday – the day I was SUPPOSED to get my HSG, I woke up to some devastating news. A dear friend had miscarried for the 4th time. She had gotten pregnant right after my last loss so she hadn’t told me about it to spare my feelings. She lost the baby a few days ago at 9 weeks. I felt terrible. My heart ached for her, and I couldn’t help but feel a pang of guilt because if it wasn’t for my own crap, I may have been able to be there for her more. I love this woman so much and all I could do was stare helplessly at a screen and try to find some words of comfort, which felt like too little, too late.

At 4:30 I was supposed to have an appointment with a geneticist to get the ball rolling on a chromosomal work-up for Shmerson and I.

At the same time, I was cramping like crazy, AF wasn’t showing herself, and to make matters worse, I hadn’t been able to get a hold of Dr. Twofer for days. I had emailed, called, and nothing.

He needed to get me a consent form for the HSG (at that point scheduled for this Thursday) and he was MIA. I was freaking out. By 2:30 I had tried and failed miserably to get some work done, I had broken a glass, and I was going out of my skin. I decided to get the heck out of the house so as not to subject Shmerson to my wrath, and to walk around a nearby mall until my appointment.

Window shopping did nothing to ease my feeling of being on the verge (neither did the large fries). I don’t know why, but I was hoping the geneticist would at least let me feel like I was doing SOMETHING to control this whole frakked up situation.

The appointment went something like this:

Doc: So – why are you here?

Me: Three miscarriages. All in the first trimester.

Doc: Any live births?

Me: Nope.

Doc: Ok – my lab at the hospital will be sending you Form X in about a month, and then you take it to your health care provider, and they will convert it to Form Y, and then you and your husband will come in for blood tests, and about two months later, you’ll get an answer.

Me: Um.. Ok.

Doc: Just so you know – there’s about a 90% chance that these tests will not give you any answers at all, so you may as well keep trying to get pregnant. If you do get pregnant, give me a call and I’ll try to speed things up. Any questions?

Really – what could I ask? I thanked him and left the room. I walked down to my car, and started having a breakdown in the parking lot. I called Squish bawling my eyes out, telling her about my friend’s loss, about my own stupid body not cooperating, about Dr. Twofer disappearing. Then I lost it completely. I had my first panic attack in months while on the phone with her (thank FSM that I had a xanax handy). And I just kept saying “I’m done. I’m done. I’m done with this shit.”

She managed to calm me down enough for me to realize I needed a mommy pep talk, and after talking to my mom, I was finally in a together enough state to make the drive home, puffy-eyed and emotionally drained.

When I got home, I finally saw an email from Twofer. Turns out he was out of the country last week. But, since he’s not officially a doctor that works with my health care provider (remember, I went to him for a second opinion), he couldn’t get me the consent form I needed for the HSG.

So – an hour of being on hold, three conversations with random receptionists, and a couple of bouts of me suppressing throwing the phone at someone later, I finally realized that I had no choice but to bite the bullet and go to Dr. Blunt to get the frakking form. So I made an emergency appointment at his clinic and sped over there.

I disliked Dr. Blunt before. Now – I hate his guts.

I’ll spare you the details of the appointment. I caught him up on the third miscarriage. Told him I had gone to Twofer for a second opinion. Told him about my ovulation date, my last beta, and how I was concerned about AF not showing. Basically, he said that since AF hadn’t yet reared her ugly head, he wanted me to go get my betas checked to make sure I wasn’t preggo, and if I wasn’t, he told  me to go ahead and get the HSG as planned on Thursday.

Oh. Then he said: “You know what your problem is? You over-manage yourself.”

Or in other words – “I don’t get why you bother to do your research, keep detailed records, or educate yourself on your body and your options. You should just let us big male doctors run the show. And did I mention I’m hung like a horse?”

Ok – that last part was in subtext only. But I was livid.

I clenched my teeth (I still needed that frakking form after all) and said: “Well, I tried to just let things go and then I miscarried for a third time. So I’ll just continue to do things my way, thanks.”

(You freaking egomaniacal prick).

So I left his office, consent form in hand, vowing to never go there again unless I have absolutely no choice.

Because tomorrow and Wed. are a holiday here, I knew I had to get those betas this morning.

And guess what? I overslept today (thanks iPhone alarm clock and insomnia!) and missed the lab hours. I was hysterical. Knowing the clinic would never give me an HSG without recent negative betas, I called and pushed my HSG – again – to this coming Sunday.

20 minutes later, I go to the bathroom and see that I’ve finally started spotting.

I sat there and laughed. I mean, seriously- what else could I do?

(at least I know that pushing the HSG to Sunday now was completely warranted, since I’ll be on CD 6 and probably only a day or two after AF goes away again).

I have to tell you that the minute I had that consent form in my hand, and a solid plan and timeline in place, I already felt better.

Earlier in that parking lot I felt like I had no control over anything. It’s amazing what a wonderful illusion of control a tiny piece of paper in the shape of a consent form will give you.

This is what sucks about our situation. If I controlled the world, my lovely and amazing friend would not have had her loss. She wouldn’t have had her first one – let alone her fourth. If I controlled the world, pricks like Dr. Blunt would get humiliated (ohh! let’s play a game in the comments – fantasy ways to humiliate Dr. Blunt! I’ll start with having him march naked down a street full of infertile women, and have them pelt eggs at him while disparaging the size of his Schlong – now it’s your turn!).

Ehem.

Sorry – were was I?

Right. If I controlled the world, I would have a baby by now. None of the people I love would be in pain, or I could do something magical to make that pain go away. I would also do what I could for world peace and non-fat bacon that tasted exactly the same as regular bacon. But you know, I’d start with the pain of the people I loved first. (That and Dr. Blunt’s De-Schlonging).

But I don’t control the world, and all I have is a freaking consent form, a panty liner eagerly awaiting to be swapped away for a heavy pad and some tylenol, 6 days of waiting for my HSG, and a feeling of helplessness because I can’t make my friend’s pain go away.**

**Honey – if you’re reading this – and I don’t know if you are – I love you. I wish I could do something to make this better. For both of us. For every woman in this crappy situation. But especially for you. Remember that no matter what, I’m always here for you.

PS – just in case my friend is reading this – let’s also use the comments to send her some love, shall we? I’m not naming names out of respect for her privacy. Just call her Mrs. Awesome, cause she is. So: de-schlonging fantasies about Dr. Blunt and massive love for Mrs. Awesome in the comments… Ready… Go!

Sunday – The Day of the Doctors: Help me prep!

8 Apr

Ok, so here’s the deal: I’m a mess.

No, seriously. I’m a complete mess. The last week or so I’ve been detached, I’ve had middle-of-the-night anxiety attacks (something that hasn’t happened to me in months), and two uncontrollable crying fits in the last 48 hours.

Something’s up.

I mean – duh, of course something’s up. What I mean is, too much is up. I think my anti-depressants aren’t working. And I think it’s not a coincidence that I started having panic attacks as soon as AF showed up.

So I decided to make Sunday my Day of Doctors. I already mentioned making an appointment with Dr. Twofer. That’s happening at 6pm. At 3pm I have an appointment with my GP just to go over some blood tests and get my mega-vitamin-D prescription renewed. So – I decided to go all out and add Dr. Happy Pills to my appointment list at 11am that same day. I’m a woman on a mission. By the end of sunday, I want to know what the hell’s going on with my body. I don’t care if it’s me being control-freaky. It’s time.

And for that – I need your help!

I’m about to spew a very long list of concerns and problems I’ve been quietly not thinking about or talking about. Once I’m done with them, I want all of you guys to chime in – I want to hear your opinion. What tests and workups should I be asking for? What am I missing? Am I exaggerating with anything? Should I just shut up? Because I tried shutting up with Dr. Blunt, and with all due respect, it just made me sit around and wait to have another miscarriage. I really want to feel like I’m in control of my body.

So – this is something I don’t think I’ve actually done on this blog before, but without further ado – here’s my whole sordid history:

Age 17 – first bout of depression and anxiety – periods start to become irregular. Go on BCP. (I think these two may be connected. More on that later)

Age 22 – Diagnosed with PCOS – stay on low dose BCP. No other action taken. Anxiety and depression still come in bouts.

Age 27: Lose the pill. Meet Shmerson. Periods incredibly irregular. Use condoms as Birth Control. Anxiety and depression still there. Still (somewhat) under control.

Age 29 – present (halfway to 31):

Because of Jewish Laws and such, I needed to make sure that AF was done a few days before me and Shmerson’s wedding, so that I can go to the “Mikveh” and the wedding would be recognized by the rabbinical institute here (long, annoying patriarchal story).

Anyway, because AF wasn’t regular, and the wedding was coming up, I took provera for 3 days to jump start AF. It worked. Because AF was irregular leading up to the wedding, Shmerson and I had decided to TTC right away (as in during the honeymoon). I was completely clueless even about ovulation at that point. Turns out those rabbis know their stuff, because the way they time it, you ovulate right around your wedding day. Clever bastards. So (I assume) due to that AF jump start I ovulated on our honeymoon and tada! Baby made. Didn’t find out I was preggo until I was around 5 weeks because I was so used to AF not being regular. I POAS on a whim and got a BFP.

Betas were normal. First US at 5 weeks showed a small sac.

I go and get my genetics tested to make sure all is well. I get the all clear so shmerson is told he doesn’t need to test for hereditary diseases.

Second U/S was scheduled for 8 weeks. 4 days before that I started bleeding, diagnosed with a blighted ovum. I ended up getting a D&C on the day we were supposed to see a heartbeat.

Anxiety and depression get worse. I decide they will get better if I get preggo again (really smart of me).

Surprisingly, AF shows up exactly when it’s supposed to – 30 days after D&C. Positive OPK on CD20. BD from CD 15-CD 21. Faint BFP on CD 27.

Now this m’dears is when things get complicated. Here’s where I share some stuff I haven’t shared here before, probably because I was too scared to think about it, let alone write or talk about it. It’s only in the last few days that this whole affair has started to come into focus for me.

So – Faint BFP on CD 27. Time to get a blood test to confirm right? Wrong. A perfect storm was brewing. It was Rosh Hashana – which is Israel’s equivalent of everyone else’s “Holiday season”. Two weeks of EVERYTHING being closed. Between that and my total state of denial I kept on putting off the blood test. I figure I would just go “after the holidays”. Denial is a wonderful thing.

But I knew I was preggo. I kept on getting BFPs. I peed on many sticks during those two weeks. Another fun fact: My anxiety was through the roof. This is when I started waking up in the middle of the night with anxiety attacks (this was every night. and they were BAD).

So, holidays are wrapping up, and I start bleeding. I call my obgyn. He brings me in that same day. He does an U/S, and he doesn’t find a thing. No sac. Nada.

He actually believes I’m either not preggo or I got my math wrong. I assure him: Positive OPK on CD 20. I’m almost 6 weeks along. Trust me.

He tells me that I need to get my betas done so that he’ll know whether he needs to go looking for that fetus. (In other words, there’s a chance this may be ectopic).

So the next morning, I get my Betas. They’re in the high 900’s. Bleeding still going strong. OB says to wait 72 hours and get another beta. I can’t wait that long. 48 hours later I get a second beta. it’s 1200. Numbers aren’t doubling. I call the doctor. By the time he calls me back I’m already passing clots. I know it’s over.

I come in two days later, he sticks his magic wand in my hoo-ha and says that all is clear. I say ok. I’m destroyed.

I don’t think to ask why the hell he didn’t see a sac in the first place, and why he’s only looking at my uterus and not at my tubes. I don’t think I want to know. I don’t think about the fact that this could have been ectopic.

Anxiety and depression become unbearable. AF becomes a clockwork 29-30 day cycle (this is the first time since the age of 18 that this happens without the aid of pills). Ovulation happens always between CD 17 and CD 20 (usually closer to 20).

I break down emotionally in December and decide to go to a shrink as Shmerson and I pick up the pieces and decide it’s time to figure out what’s up.

In the meantime, I start having a slight sense of cramping on my right side during AF and up until ovulation. Then it goes away. This happens every month. I decided to ignore it (oh god please don’t let there be something wrong with my tubes. please don’t tell me my last pregnancy was an ectopic and this pain is because of that).

I go see Dr. Blunt. I don’t tell him about the pain because I’m stupid and I’m in denial. He sends me to do a clotting test. My MTFHR says I’m a Heterozygote. Dr. Blunt says that means that I’m fine and I don’t need anything. He suggests progesterone supplements after a BFP. I ask him to do a hormonal workup (all I’ve had checked is my thyroid) he says I don’t need it. I’m uneasy with this, but in the spirit of “letting go of control” I go along with it. And in that same spirit, he doesn’t give me an US or anything.

In the meantime, I go to my GP for a general blood workup- high blood pressure and a vitamin D deficiency, and also, elevated lymphocytes, which are basically antibodies. That usually happens right after a sickness, but for me I’ve always had it. Doctor wants to monitor lymphocytes. I have no idea why and whether that has anything to do with anything.  I start taking prescription dose vitamin D and decide to quit smoking because that will obviously help with the blood pressure thing. And yeah, I should really quit smoking because of all the other stuff too.

I quit smoking. Shmerson and I start TTC again. Ovulation not monitored but guessing it was on CD 17. AF starts on CD 30 and that freaking pain on my right side comes right along with it (worse than ever).

And on the night before AF starts,  I wake up with an anxiety attack. The first time that’s happened since I started meds. And then the next night it happens again.

And the last two days, I’m pretty much as much of a wreck as I was right after the second miscarriage.

I have realized that it was all nice and good while Shmerson and I weren’t TTC, but now that we are again, I need to take control of my care. I cannot wait around to have another M/C.

I also can’t spend another TWW like I did this one. I also cannot handle being back with all of that anxiety and non-functioning depression. So when I go to my day of doctors on Sunday (in case you’re curious, sunday is Israel’s monday), I want to come armed with everything I need to tell them, everything I want to ask, and a list of every test me (and possibly shmerson) need to take.

I’ve got a few guesses.

I think that maybe – just maybe my PCOS is causing a hormonal imbalance that has resulted in increased anxiety, and that the meds may be masking that.

I think my second pregnancy was an ectopic that cleared, though I have no proof of that except the beta numbers and that stupid nagging pain on my right side that was never there before.

I think that if I have another miscarriage I may go insane.

And now I need your help.

What do I say to Dr. Happy Pills? Should I stay on the anti-depressants if they’re not working for me? Should I just detox off of them and hope that balancing out my hormones will do the trick and take xanax until that happens?

What do I ask Dr. Twofer? The man’s a gyno and an endocrinologist, and I’m paying for a private consultation, that means, everything is on the table. Every test in the book. I just don’t want him to think I’m crazy. Am I imagining this ectopic? What affect would a prior ectopic have on TTC at this point?

Have at it ladies – I need all the help I can get. I need to come in armed with a plan and take control of this Biyatch.

So – theories, personal experiences, debunkings, lists of tests, screaming at me to shut up, lists of questions – all of it. Lay it on me.

Thanks!!

Not Knocked Up – And Happy About It

5 Apr

Ok – so the red lady has yet to sing, but she’s due tomorrow and I got yet another BFN today. I know I’m out this cycle.

And guess what? I’m happy about it!

“Happy?” you ask. “How can you be happy about a BFN?”

Here’s the thing. I’m a bit mad that I’m not as clairvoyant as I thought. But on the other hand, I’ve been walking around during this TWW with a huge sense of unease. I was having a hard time pinpointing why, but I had this general feeling that Dr. Blunt wasn’t taking me seriously. Now, don’t get me wrong, I like the guy, but I think he, like most doctors over here, is set up so that he only gets serious after 3 miscarriages.

Both me – and Shmerson it turns out – have been walking around these last two weeks waiting for a BFP, and also for the inevitable Miscarriage that we were both sure would follow.

Then last night, I ran across this post via LFCA. This woman has been through multiple miscarriages, and she basically wrote up a survivor’s guide. Most of what she said was not news to me, but one message came across loud and clear: why go through more heartache waiting for another loss? Insist on all the tests NOW!

It struck a chord with me. So I let that message stew in my head for a bit. Then this morning I remembered something, and smacked myself upside the head. How did I not think of this sooner?

Three years ago, just as Shmerson and I were starting our relationship, someone recommended that I go see a doctor who is not only an OB/GYN, but also an Endocrinologist (he’s the only one in the country who is both, which means he’s an expert in women just like me). I went to him back then, and without even reading my medical history he knew immediately that I had PCOS and could predict half my history just by looking at me.

At the time, there was not much he could do. But he said: When you want to have babies, come back and we’ll see what we can do.

I left there feeling like this guy knew his shit.

Now, mind you, Dr. Twofer (yes, that is what I’ve decided to call him), does not work with the universal health care system here and is a bit pricey.

But this morning I remembered him, and I said to myself – what’s more important? The money, or the knowledge that you’ve truly done everything you can?

So I talked to Shmerson, and my mom, and with the promise that my parents will help us cover some of the cost, I have set up an appointment for me and Shmerson this coming Sunday evening.

I can’t believe I’m about to say this:

I am so incredibly happy to have a BFN. I get to insist on getting some answers. i don’t need to have another two week wait feeling helpless. If there’s something that can be done, this man will help us do it. If there has been a stone left unturned, we will now insist on looking under it.

I feel like a huge weight has been lifted off my shoulders. I think the universe likes me. Thanks Universe!

***UPDATE: 2 hours after posting this I started spotting. It’s over, the red lady has sung, and I am relieved. How weird is that?

MTHFR? WTF?

15 Feb

As if we didn’t have enough acronyms to contend with on this baby-making roller coaster.

So a few weeks back I went in for blood work to see if my MC’s have anything to do with clotting issues.

So today I get an email notification that the results are in. I log in to the handy web interface.

Now mind you, despite countless hours on the google machine, I never really went into the clotting thing because it just went waaaay over my head.

So – into the handy web interface I go. Most results are given with a range (as in, if you’re somewhere between point A and point B, you’re cool). And on all of those all was well. Then came the ones without a range, and the confuzzlement set in.

Now mind you, each of these tests has a handy little link that is supposed to explain what they are, and what the normal results are supposed to be. Guess what? They didn’t help one little bit!

So here are the enigmatic, WTF? results for your reading pleasure:

Antithrombin activity – greater than 100% (what does that mean? Is my antithrombin thingy an over achiever?)

Protein C-Activity – Greater than 100% (are these tests reality tv stars? are they also 200% sure of stuff?)

MTHFR – Heterozygote (does that mean that my chromosomes prefer chromosomes of the opposite sex?)

Ok – that was a really stupid joke. So before losing sanity I called the hematologist’s office to find out what the heck all of this was supposed to mean.

Once I got the “let me get back to you on that” from them, I hopped on Dr. Go Ogle and did a bit of a search.

So apparently the MTHFR thing is a chromosomal mutation that could possibly cause MC’s. But there’s not concrete proof. On the rest of the WTF results, no luck. Heady-explodey. Denial until I get some answers from Dr. Blood.

Dr Blood’s secretary got back to me and said “he says everything’s normal, but you’re welcome to make an appt with him” Gee, thanks Dr Blood, that’s encouraging. How is a chromosomal mutation normal exactly? urgh.

Googling continued,  I saw a lot of science babble, gave up on the google machine, and emailed my lovely Choco-Buddy Courtney, since I remember her mentioning something about MTHFR on her blog a while back. She of course, as usual, saved the day.

So Court managed to bring the sense back into my life and told me that my MTHFR result basically means I’ll need to take a vitamin cocktail while we TTC (extra folic acid, B6, that kind of stuff), and also once I’m preggo, but all should be well. Thank you Court. You rock.

Plus – I have to say it’s kind of nice to have some sort of minimal explanation of why these darn babies-in-waiting refuse to hang out in my uterus.

I still made the appointment with Dr. Blood though. Because hey, I like having information. And what’s the deal with the greater than 100% WTF tests? Seriously. If any of you guys have any clue what they mean, do enlighten me. I know there’s at least one doctor among us, and many amateurs.  So… Help?!?

And I’m really getting sick of acronyms.

kthnxbye

ttyl

xoxo

BBS

CU

G2G

TTFN

MO is AFK

17 day diet my ass!

9 Jan

Ok – I watch Dr. Phil. I know, it’s a show that is at times ridiculous, incredibly preachy, and cheesy on many levels. But I watch it. Sue me.

Today I saw the episode kicking off the shill-a-thon that is the “17 day diet challenge”, and I’m pissed off.

This man is supposed to be a mental health professional and it’s seriously upsetting to me that he’s pimping out this BS program.

I’ll start by saying this: weight issues are solved not by changing what you eat (though of course that is something you need to do). Weight issues are caused by emotional eating. They are a symptom! Not the problem.

And the fact that this supposed mental health professional basically ignores this  in what he preaches is incredibly upsetting to me.

I’ve written here before about my own struggles with my weight. Since the age of 17, I’ve been yo-yoing between 120 pounds and 190 pounds.

I gain the weight, go on a diet, lose the weight, and then gain it again.

Now that I have some clarity – it’s obvious to me why this happens.

I was depressed, I suffered from extreme anxiety. I self-medicated with food.

I was raised to see food as a comfort. I celebrated with food, I mourned with food, I ate and ate “because I deserved it”.

I do not know one single person who is overweight, that does not also have problems with depression, anxiety, and/or low self-esteem. Not one. I literally ran through every person I know who has weight issues, and they all meet this criteria.

Since going on zoloft, and beginning to deal with my emotional issues, I have lost weight, and I’ve done so without even trying. I don’t have the urge to binge anymore, I’m not obsessed with food, and I no longer eat until I’m stuffed – only until I’m full.

I realize that especially because of my high cholesterol and high blood pressure I need to take more steps to eat healthier, and I need to exercise more. I’m working on it, step by step, and getting better at it every day.

There is no magic diet. You lose weight by eating healthy and moving your body. It’s not rocket science, yet people struggle with it all the time.

“Dr” Phil showed taped segments of the competitors in this 17 diet whatever, and each one of them mentioned, at least in passing, going through some tragedy in their lives, becoming overweight as a result of a major life change, or emotional eating.

Yet for some reason – nobody even brought up the thought that treating these people’s obvious issues with depression would be a far better approach – instead of making them run through tires on national television.

Yes – of course they need to learn how to eat healthier and exercise – but when you’re depressed, or feeling bad about yourself – are you really going to be able to find the motivation to get off your fat ass and do something about it? Of course not!

Losing weight is about loving yourself – it’s about saying to yourself “I deserve to be pretty and healthy”.

Gaining weight is about self-hate. I never stuck to anything because in my heart of hearts I felt like I didn’t deserve to feel pretty. I didn’t deserve to be healthy. I was engaging in self-destructive behavior. Period. This is what substance abuse is. Self-medication. It’s the same for smokers, for alcoholics, and yes – for people with weight issues.

Why is it that when a heroin addict goes into rehab he or she spends most of their time dealing with childhood trauma or abusive spouses or depression or whatever, but when an overweight person goes on a diet not one moment is spent in figuring out why they overeat in the first place?

I saw a few months back a story about some guy who was on “The Biggest Loser” and lost something like 200 pounds, and then a year later, away from the cameras, he gained it all back.

Of course he did! Because losing weight did not solve any of his REAL problems.

It pisses me off that a supposed licensed psychiatrist would be so irresponsible as to perpetuate the myth of magic diets.

There is no such thing as a “diet” that works. What works for people with lifelong struggles with weight is to figure out the true cause for their self-medication.

“Dr” Phil needs to stop peddling some bullshit goods that will supposedly make these people magically thin and happy.

They may end up thin – but trust me – the second those cameras go away, those people ain’t gonna be happy.

Zoloft is not a magic diet pill. The reason I’ve lost weight while taking it is because I have real medication for my emotional problems, and no longer feel the need to self-medicate with food.

I still have a long way to go – and many pounds to lose. But I will not be buying any gimmicky books to do so. I’m just going to work on getting healthy and moving my body more, and I know that if I continue to look after my mental health, my physical health will easily follow.

It’s not that I’m against legitimate programs like weight watchers that help a person deal with the day-to-day practicality of eating right. They do good things, and emphasize long-term change.

But I went on weight watchers – and I lost 30 pounds on it – and then I gained it all back – BECAUSE I WAS DEPRESSED.

“Dr” Phil needs to take a good hard look at his own (overweight!) self and start educating his audience about the real causes of weight gain. It’s not the fast food joints. It’s not the dramatic pounds of lard that he dumps on his stage to illustrate what his guests consume every month.

No – it’s people with emotional issues that are self medicating in order to deal with them.

Deal with the cause – and the symptom will eventually take care of itself (with a little bit of hard work of course – but I know that it will).

I’ll end with an anecdote: last night I went out to a show with friends. When it was over, we went to a restaurant. I was starving because I hadn’t really eaten all day. I ordered food (some healthy, some a bit less – but nothing too damaging), and I ate until I was full. And then – I didn’t order dessert. I didn’t even consider it. It wasn’t on my radar. I was full, I didn’t need to eat chocolate cake because “I was out with friends” or because “I deserved it.”

I just didn’t need it because I wasn’t hungry anymore. It’s as simple as that. And I was clear headed enough to see this. There was no internal yes or no battle here. I wasn’t hungry so I didn’t eat it.

These last few weeks have been the first time in 13 years that I have gone out to eat on several occasions and not even broached the subject of dessert.

And no BS book was involved. All that was involved was clarity.

 

 

Taboo

18 Dec

Well it looks like this blogging thing is starting to work out – so I’m going to do something that is expected of most bloggers. Rant. I apologize in advance.

The first time I got pregnant my parents (and especially my father) freaked out and basically begged me not to say a thing until I got through my first trimester.

I pretty much balked at them. It’s not that I told the whole world, but pretty darn close to it.

Now, mind you – three months earlier one of my closest friends miscarried at nine weeks – so it’s not as if I didn’t know that this was a possibility, but I was so excited I just couldn’t help it.

To be honest, I didn’t really regret telling the people I told. Most of them were my support system once I went through the first miscarriage.

The second time I got pregnant my husband and I hardly told anybody. I basically did the math: If I miscarry again, who would I tell about it?

Those were the only people we told.

But a funny thing happened after my second miscarriage. I wanted to yell about it. I wanted everyone to know. If I could have shouted it from the rooftops I would have.

A friend of mine shared a video with me from TED (a site which I love, and everyone should check out). It’s a cute funny video about two parents talking about “parenting taboos”.

You can find the video here

Alisa Volkman speaks beautifully about her own miscarriage. I won’t try to paraphrase her here (just watch around the 10 minute mark).

But basically, I agree with her completely. You can’t have a funeral for what society at large calls a “fetus”. there is no public forum for you to express your grief. It’s something that happens to you quietly and behind closed doors.

The weird thing is (and Alisa kind of touches on this as well) – is that once you miscarry – all of the sudden all of these stories start coming up out of the woodwork. And that’s when you start hearing about your neighbor, your aunt, your husband’s cousin, etc etc who had a miscarriage.

But then it gets even weirder. People STILL won’t really talk about it.

When my husband and I came in to the doctors office while I was in the middle of my second miscarriage (this is the expensive private doctor – not the a-hole from the first pregnancy), he seemed completely unsympathetic and unperturbed. I asked him why this was happening. He said “I don’t know – it just happens”

yep – and it happens in about 20% of all pregnancies!

20%! Think about that for a minute. Sit ten women who have been pregnant around the table and chances are that two out of those ten has miscarried.

It’s a staggering statistic. Yet no one talks about it.

And after the second miscarriage I really tried. I think I was kind of testing people.

I was working at an office at the time, and it was a fairly big company – something like 100 employees in the building, and I knew about twenty of them.

When I found out I was pregnant I didn’t tell anyone except my boss because she had to know in case I had dr’s appts and so on. Plus, I really  liked her.

But that was it. No one else knew.

When the miscarriage happened I was out of the office for a week. The first three days were because I was physically weak. The rest were because I just couldn’t handle being around people.

When I came back, people were naturally curious as to why I was gone. So I tested it out on one of my co-workers. I told him – the truth is that I was about 6 weeks pregnant and I lost the baby.

And he was actually quite sympathetic. And I felt a bit better myself – just for saying it out loud.

I quit that job about a week later (the whole – what am I doing with my life this is a wake up call- thing). And on my last day, I stopped to say goodbye to the receptionist. I smiled at her and she asked me why I was leaving.

I chose honesty again: I had a miscarriage. It’s my second one in three months. I need to re-think my life choices and I can’t do that here.

She took both of my hands and looked into my eyes. She was crying. She told me that six months earlier she had miscarried at four months. The pain in her eyes was palpable. I could feel how she was relieved to see a person in front of her who so openly spoke about it. it was as if she was exploding wanting to say it to everyone.

I lost a baby, I am in pain.

I squeezed her hands tightly and said “I can only imagine your pain” (and I barely can. I know how broken I am after such a short time – I can’t fathom the pain of a miscarriage that far along into a pregnancy). “I understand. I know. Be strong. Take care of yourself. Try to bring yourself to a place where you can be happy again. I wish all of the joy in the world.”

And I walked out of that office.

My mother – who turns out had a miscarriage about two years before she had me, and guess when she finally told me about it – even my mother – who I assume understands the pain of losing a baby – really wants me to move on already. As in – the minute I’ll have a healthy pregnancy and she’ll be a grandmother all will be well. And why am I still sad about this anyway?

Well – first of all – of course I want to try again. I wanted to try again the second I could medically do it. But trying again just isn’t that easy.

I’m sorry – I can’t just “get over it.”

(don’t get me wrong, my mom is pretty sympathetic toward me with regards to what I’m going through – but I know her. I know what she’s thinking. And she’s thinking “get over it and make me a grandchild already dammit!”)

But I’m kind of getting away from the point. If 20% of women have miscarriages – why the heck don’t people talk about them? Why did I have to go through one to find out just how common they are?

Honestly – I don’t even think Oprah’s done a show about it. And you know what – considering that she’s done shows about men giving birth that is quite a statement.

To quote Kenan Thompson: What’s up with that?

A quick footnote:

That very expensive private doctor who was very informative the first time around but incredibly blase’ the second time around? yeah – I’m not going to see him any more.

The new doctor I have started seeing is awesome. When I walked into his office and told him what I have gone through, the first thing he said was: “I understand this has probably been very difficult for you. You should definitely take a couple of months to recover from this emotionally. In the meantime, let’s see if we can figure out if there’s a reason this is happening.”

Yeah. I like my new doctor.

Chapter 3: Choose your doctor wisely. Seriously.

16 Dec

So I’m about 5 weeks along at this point. (we’re talking June 2010). Since I don’t have a gyno/obgyn I just pick one randomly that works with my medical plan (Israel has a universal health care system – complicated and not important at this point).

We go to the appt. and it’s still early so basically we see a little white circle. Nothing much else. Oh – and this doc’s an asshole.

He’s just not nice. I don’t like him. I want to change him, and like, now.

So a week later I do – and I make an appt for week 8 of the pregnancy with yet another doctor – knowing this is when we’re supposed to see a heartbeat.

So two more weeks go by. Nicknames are being made up for the fetus, cravings are happening, people are being told. I’m feeling a bit weird (could be the nicotine withdrawal), all is well. For now. It seems like everyone is basically trying to digest the fact that if all goes well, by march first we will be parents.

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