“Rest and self-care are so important. When you take time to replenish your spirit, it allows you to serve others from the overflow. You cannot serve from an empty vessel.” – Eleanor Brownn
You have one chance to live your best life. One chance. Now. . . just for a minute let that sink in.
Are you living your best life? Do you feel good? Do you smile? Are you happy? Do you love your life?
We all go through ruts. It’s okay. I believe that’s how it’s meant to be. After all, we have to learn somehow. Right? But how long do we have to feel awful before we decide it’s time to take care of ourselves and feel better? What makes us think that things will get better if we just wait it out?
I think we try to be strong for everyone else. As a mother, a wife, a WOMAN, I will speak for myself and say that I’ve always worried about taking care of everyone else first. My health has always been placed on the back burner because all those people I love needed attention first. And that was okay. It was all part of my learning process.
When I realized that I couldn’t continue taking care of others because I wasn’t going to last much longer the way I was feeling, I was called selfish. I was told I was an awful mother, an awful person. But I kept pushing through. It has taken me years to find my laughter, my smile, my zest for living and my health. It made me realize the “who” and “what” in my life that I actually NEED. I learned that no matter what you do in life you will NEVER make everyone happy. Sadly you have to make the choice to take care of yourself first. Make yourself happy first. Those that are happy for you will stay with you. And honestly who has the energy to try to make everyone else happy?
The time in my life when I needed to be loved the most I had a limited number of peoples that loved and supported me. That’s okay. It just made my circle smaller and stronger. My dear friends turned into the family I needed. Those that matter the most will be there for you to help you every step along the way. After trying so hard to impress and help out everyone my whole life, I learned the hard way that I don’t need the approval of anyone. Those who I thought would/ should love me through it all judged the hardest and left me to fend for myself during my hardest time of my life, all while talking shit about me and putting me down to others. Awesome huh? And people wonder why I love animals so much….?
I chose to turn my anger, heartache, and energy into taking care of me. I researched the HELL out of health issues and the problems I was having. I found doctors that were willing to help me without just wanting to hand out limitless prescriptions with all sorts of side effects that just seem to cause yet more issues. I knew what I wanted and I made it known. Two doctors I visited didn’t make the cut. They weren’t willing to dig deep and figure things out. But because I was so picky and told them what I needed they were able to be honest with me and tell me whether or not they were willing to help me.
After my hysterectomy in March 2017, my health was better in ways and it went downhill fast in other aspects. Holy cow…. I was depressed. I didn’t realize it at the time but when I look back I realize what a mess I was.
The one thing it all boils down to…… HORMONES. Hormone imbalance.
I didn’t leave the house for weeks, sometimes months at a time. I worked from home at the time, so I didn’t have to get dressed and brush my hair in the morning and I had my dogs at my feet keeping me company. My husband was working night shift so I had to be quiet while he was sleeping and make sure that he was getting a good rest to wake up and go back to work, so I would go in my office, shut the door, get on the phone and do my work. I’d take breaks to throw laundry in or do dishes. I kept my house clean. But I was miserable. I didn’t feel well and if I had allowed it, I would have slept for hours and hours every day. I was so tired. Exhausted actually. My body ached everywhere. I was gaining weight like mad. Then I started getting these awful headaches. I will NEVER forget the first of these headaches I had. I honestly thought I was going to die. Literally die.
I was sitting on the couch visiting and laughing with my daughter and this headache hit so suddenly. The left side of my head suddenly was in so much pain that I was sobbing. My ear ached, my jaw was locked and my eye felt as though someone had removed it from my face, threw it in the freezer and thrown in back in my face, frozen and at full force. I instantly got an awful stomach ache and ran to the bathroom. I was throwing up with such force that it cause my nose to start bleeding. My poor bathroom looked like WWIII. I just figured it was a migraine so I took a pain killer and went to bed. I woke up with the same headache so I called my son and asked him to take me to the emergency room. This was a big deal. I’m independent. But I didn’t think I could make it on my own.
Long story -short…. they did a CT scan and all they could see was inflammation. They were worried I was having a stroke. No signs of a stroke. I was put on medication for “cluster headaches”.
I was sick. The headaches were unpredictable and would come on without a warning. While the medication helped the headaches some, the side effects were absolutely ridiculous. They caused my body aches to worsen. And they gave me a serious hangover. When I would take one, my husband would tell me to just quit talking. My brain would be thinking one thing and something completely different would exit my mouth. I made no sense. I would forget to swallow my own spit and I’d drool. Embarrassing. Several times I had to go to the hospital because even the pills weren’t helping so they’d have to give me a shot and leave me in a dark room. Sometimes the first shot wouldn’t help and they’d have to give me a narcotics shot. Then I’d have to call my husband to drive down and take me home. Bless his sweet loving heart. I always tried to not bother anyone but for the first time in my life… I had to ask for help, not be the one to help.
This is when I began to research. Everything kept coming back to hormones. After my hysterectomy, my doctor told me I’m young enough that I should be fine. He said hormones would work themselves out. Little did he know.
I dealt with it for over a year. I learned some headache triggers. Strong scents…especially pine, stress, lack of caffeine, noisy environment. The doctor changed my script to injections. The side effects weren’t as awful. I got pretty damn good at giving myself a shot in the stomach. It was my new normal.
It didn’t need to be. But I didn’t know better. I am sharing this with you so you know better. You do not need to work through feeling like you’re about to the end of your rope.
After researching for months upon months, I finally started calling around to hormone specialists. We are required to carry insurance as it’s the law. But insurance is not required to pay for hormones. It is “elective treatment” in their eyes. I call bullshit. It is a vital part of a human. It’s what makes our bodies run!
After nearly deciding to give up because of the expense that I wasn’t sure I was willing to pay, my darling friend from high school made a post on facebook. She mentioned that she had found a doctor that had helped her. She explained her symptoms she was having and said he had fixed her. Of course I wasted no time and I messaged her. We discussed things and she convinced me to go talk to him. Not only was he what I was looking for, he was nearly half the expense as the other clinics I had contacted. And…. he billed insurance for everything he knew they’d pay for.
I called and was given an appointment the next week. I went it and they handed me the paperwork to fill out. There was this section to fill out all of your symptoms/issues. There were three different parts within this section. I pretty much checked the box next to each symptom…. weight gain, headaches, irritability, lack of energy, body aches, blotchy skin, etc.
As I was talking to the doctor I began to cry out of total frustration. I explained to him that it took every single ounce of energy to get out of bed and get moving in the morning and that it took all I had to get through my work day and drive home without falling asleep from pure exhaustion. (I had started working outside the home in October 2017) He promised me he would help. He told me he could tell that I had an imbalance. He explained to me that it was going to take a while to get things straightened out but that he wasn’t going to stop until I was feeling better. He kept his word.
That day he put me on bioidentical progesterone. He told me to start taking it at night and that he was going to call me immediately when he got my blood results so that we could figure out a game plan.
Two days later he called me. He said he wanted to see me immediately for testosterone pellet implants, he was putting me on thyroid meds and he wanted me to continue my progesterone as I was. He also wanted me to take vitamins A, D, and B. So his receptionist made an appointment and I went down the following day. I got the vitamins from his office and I got my implants. Not painful at all until the numbing meds wore off. Then just sore for a few days. The day after my implants I got one of my headaches. It was pretty outrageous but not my worst. I stayed home from work and slept it off all day after giving myself a shot.
After a couple weeks I had my blood redrawn to check my levels. I had been so low that he doubled my thyroid and progesterone and I had to go for a testosterone booster. When most people get one pellet implant, I had three. Three. He told me I was the 1%. My original counts were literally non-existent. He explained to me that I had been running on adrenaline and my own will to survive.
About a month went past and I was feeling so much better. I discussed weight loss and he suggested I try the KETO lifestyle and that it worked really well with helping balance out the hormones.
I didn’t have time to take from work and I didn’t have the money to pay for them to help me with the diet part as I was spending everything extra I had on the hormone angle of things, so I decided to bust out my will power and do it on my own.
I started living the keto lifestyle on September 17th, 2018. After 3 weeks, I went for a checkup and had lost eleven pounds. I just went for my second set of pellets on December 7th and was down another 15 pounds, totaling 26 pounds lost in 12 weeks.
I have done well and I feel well.
I have decided to share my story because I want to help you feel better too. I want you to know that you don’t have to be miserable. Do it for you. Those that love you and appreciate you will stand by your side and help you.
And please… reach out if you need to. I’m not an expert. But I’ve done my research and I know what has worked for me. I would be more than happy to help you or help you find someone that could help you the way my doctor has helped me.