Since, “Spring Ahead” arrived not long ago, the hush and ink in the wee hours of the morning is dead. Not a sight or sound can be heard anywhere. I must flick the switch of the lamp near my writing desk in order to see my keyboard waiting patiently for me. Letters and keys in black and white. What will they say today?
Because the theme of my blog is, Chronic Conditions, I must revisit it. Every now and again, my writing veers off its course. Perhaps I was walking my dog before a woodland friend crossed in front of him? Maybe, I change the topic in order to give my readers a break? Sometimes, it is more for me, I think.
A few weeks ago I saw my Endocrinologist. She’s a doctor who specializes in diseases of the endocrine system. She’s studied biology, hormones, the thyroid, metabolism, reproduction, and is truly an authority in the area of diabetes. She has been one of my doctors for many years. No, I do not live with diabetes, but I see her twice a year for other things. She does what most doctors do: looks over my chart to see how many pounds I’ve gained or lost, discusses lab reports, adjusts my medication, and talks to me. That’s what I like about her the most. Not only does she talk to me, but she listens to me, too.
In my early twenties I was diagnosed with Polycystic ovarian syndrome or PCOS. Slowly, it tends to make a person put on the pounds. In addition, it often leads to infertility which I had experienced early in my marriage. Although, as you know, God, blessed me with the gift of sons. I have always been proactive with my health. Yet, there came a time when it didn’t seem to matter what I did or didn’t do. Like a hawk, I watched every morsel upon my plate. I exercised for hours in the cold and in the heat. For months, I’d rise and shine at the crack of dawn to walk and run five miles at the high school track. Still, as soon as my toe tipped upon the dreaded scale, I’d see a small red arrow rise up and over giant black numbers against a flat background of white. “How could that be,” I wondered to myself? I gained another agonizing pound or two or sometimes three….
The first time I saw an endocrinologist, I finally felt relief. Everything I had been going through was ‘normal’ for my body, for me. I had done nothing wrong. This was my life and I was living in the shell that God had given to me. Still, things within me were a bit off kilter. My doctor drew blood and yes, she would wait for the results. But her expertise together with my symptoms and her common sense typed a diagnosis in her computer long before any numbers came back upon the screen. No, I didn’t have diabetes. Instead, I lived with a close relative named, “Insulin Resistance.” All in the family, so to speak.
When lab reports confirmed what my endocrinologist suspected, she suggested a new plan at that time. In clinical trials, a common Type 2 diabetes medication was believed to delay or prevent the onset of diabetes when used to treat my condition. “Would I consider it,” she asked? “Let’s go for it,” I answered! If I had any chance to possibly prevent myself from developing diabetes, I would be a fool not to try. There was nothing to lose except the weight. It was ironic, I had everything to gain!
Fast forward to today. I’ve lost many pounds over the years. Today, I weigh exactly the same as I did in my senior year of high school. In fact, my doctor doesn’t want me to lose another ounce, let alone another pound! I still exercise, but now it’s in moderation. I eat what I want, but its healthy and in smaller portions throughout the day. Oh, and the medication I’ve been on? Slowly, my doctor has been reducing it over the years. On my last visit, she stopped it altogether. My insulin resistance is gone.
Just a few more words for all of you, my readers. First and foremost, I am not a doctor. Everyone’s body is different. What works for me may not work for you. But, if you have had symptoms such as mine, or if your family has a history of diabetes, consider making an appointment with an endocrinologist. Don’t be afraid. Education is the key to a healthy life and longer living.
What do you have to lose? Give it a try….