On Monday, April 11, 2016, I’m starting The Whole 30.
I have been unhealthy and overweight my entire life.
Sickness has always been a reality for me. I’ve survived many colds, ear infections that required three sets of tubes, and then leukemia when I was 14. My adult life brought a bad case of bronchitis, knee issues, high blood pressure, and an autoimmune disorder (Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis). In the last few years I’ve ended up in urgent care/ER twice because of severe stomach/back pain, and most recently I’ve started to deal with sporadic heart palpitations (brought on by, I believe, anxiety).
I’m only 32 years old.
This is unacceptable.
I’ve tried a ton of diets and workouts in the past. I’ve lost weight, and I’ve gained it back. So what makes this time different?
The last six to nine months of my life have been a roller coaster – high highs and low lows. My life personally has been pretty great. I love where I work, I have amazing friends, I go to an awesome church, and have starting doing things that I’ve always wanted to and enjoy, without apology or hesitation. But very real pain and struggle has come to those whom I love dearly. And while my pain is no where near what theirs is, it is still very real and has been quite the road to walk.
The last few months of 2015 were the lowest of low. It felt like in the course of a few weeks, blow after blow kept coming. I felt like I might go a little crazy at first, but I took some deep breaths and seemed to be coping okay.
At the end of December/beginning of January, my body told me differently. I started having heart palpitations. It freaked me out so I of course went to Dr. Google. This is the first time I’ve looked up a medical symptom online and actually felt better afterward. Usually the internet tells me I’m dying or something. But not this time. Apparently living through three months of constant stress affects your body, and in my case, I started to have heart palpitations. I started taking magnesium, and they’ve become less regular, and I’ve been to the doctor since, so all you worriers out there, I’m doing fine!
My palpitations had resolved for about a month, which was nice. Then, I got a phone call from my dad which lead to an extremely stressful evening that ended with a lot of tears. I won’t go into details, but my dad deals with addiction. In talking with my mom that night, she said something that really hit home for me. She said that nothing was ever important enough for him to stop.
Nothing was ever important enough for him to stop.
Nothing has ever been important enough for me to stop.
In the midst of dealing with the bad decisions my dad has made, I was cut to the heart with my own bad decisions. Nothing – no goal or bad experience – has ever been enough for me to stick with a plan to lose weight and get healthy. The next day I started having heart palpitations again – my body processing anxiety.
One of my highs came five days later, though. I went to a convention and got to meet actors from one of my favorite television shows. It was amazing and inspiring – it’s hard to explain how much that weekend meant to me. But it definitely added even more fire to my dreams and goals.
A week after that, I ended up going to the ER at 3 am because I woke up with severe stomach and back pain. Everything ended up okay, but as I laid in the hospital bed, I reflected on my health: I’m 32, but because of my lack of healthy living, it’s completely possible I could have a heart attack.
I’m tired of this. Tired of feeling “a little sick all the time.”
Finally working on things like acting, writing, etc, has made my dreams a little more tangible. It’s like I finally have something that I can hold onto instead of food. Something that I can objectively look at and see that the choices I make in my health will directly impact my ability to move forward.
Also, for the first time, this isn’t about weight or my appearance. I’m sure weight loss will come with healthy eating, but what I’m really after, what I really want, is to FEEL BETTER. To feel alive.
To feel like I’m 32 years old.
I’m going to blog every day of this 30+ day journey. I almost didn’t want to start this because what if I fail? But it’s this flawed thinking that pushes me to start this blog – I have to see myself as a winner. I can’t fail. I’m going to kick it in the ass.*
So welcome to my journey. I hope that it encourages you, makes you laugh, makes you think. I’m not sure what this will look like, so we’ll just find out together.
Comments and thoughts are welcome!
*’Kick it in the ass’ is something the late, great Director Kim Manners used to say – that’s where I got that from and just want to give credit where credit is due.