Saturday, April 27, 2024

My Challenging Weight Journey


Weight Loss in the US is an obsession that affects women from an early age. I was no different. I heard from a young age to "clean your plate" from my grandmother, but at the same time, "lose weight because no one loves a fat girl." Two very different ideals - How can you clean your plate but lose weight so you are "loved'?

I started obsessing about my weight at around fifteen to sixteen. I saw the way other students treated each other due to weight. It became important to me to not be "fat" because I didn't want to be made fun of at school. As well as listening to the grandmother talk about how men don't like fat women. 

I never dated in high school and because I wasn't like other girls, I began fretting that I was too fat. I also wore glasses and got contacts so that I would be the four-eyed frog-faced fat-girl.

From the ages of sixteen to about twenty-six, I weighed between 85 and 100 pounds. I was labeled by doctors in my mid twenties as anorexic due to my eating one time per day or eating just a little at each meal. I had kidney stone issues because I wasn't drinking enough water. I used laxatives constantly to keep myself thin, and was always doing something physical - horse back riding, hiking, line dancing, and the like. 

At twenty-six, I moved from Colorado to Missouri (or Misery as I like to call it). I went from 100 pounds to 185 pounds in about six months, due to not finding a job easily, the stress from the person I was dating to "find a good job and be 'normal' and not a horse girl or "boyish" because no one wants a girl that can compete with a man. 

I then started the constant yo-yo dieting. Bouncing between 110 to 175. I left the boyfriend I moved back to Missouri with, and started dating another guy about a year later. I was still doing the bouncing between weights, constantly hating myself because I wasn't "pretty" enough by societal standards. 

I was with this guy for six and one-half years. My weight never balanced out and I was getting heavier at one point I crested 250 pounds. I left him and spent two more years in Missouri before I moved back to Colorado. 

By this point, I was having health issues that the doctors in Missouri told me "You are just fat lose weight." I kept telling them there was something WRONG, but no one would believe me. 

I was eating a loaf of bread every 2-3 days and tons of sugar and feeling sick all the time. Doctors in Missouri just kept telling me that I had no self-control and to follow strict diets, which when I did made me feel like I was starving and only made the cravings worse. I was having horrible periods and kept saying there had to be something wrong, like with my uterus or that for which I was told by a doctor in Missouri, "We don't give hysterectomies to WHITE girls, because you will want to have babies someday."

I literally gave up until I decided to move back to Colorado in 2012. Since I moved states and got new insurance I had to play the game over again of being tested for things. Nothing was coming up other than high blood pressure and my weight. After struggling for 5 years in Missouri I went through another 5 year struggle in Colorado until that one month, it all came to a head.

No matter how much I hiked, horseback rode, walked, walked, walked, and walked some more, I was gaining weight, not losing it. 

In November and December of 2016 I didn't have a period. YEAH!! I was so happy. After starting my period at the age of 9 I was really hoping that I was DONE with this crap. January 2017 I had a period that lasted 3 days, the same with February 2017. I was like okay, that works since I used to have 7 day long periods. March 2017 I had a period that lasted 31 days. 

I went to the doctor and was sent to a OBGYN. That's when they found it - a tumor in my uterus. At the time it was removed in September 2017, because of course insurance wanted me to do treatments - the tumor was the size of a cantaloupe and weighed 7 pounds.

These images (Above) are from July 2017 and I looked like I was pregnant and I had been for 10 damn long years - yes that's how long they figured the tumor had been growing. If the doctors in Missouri had LISTENED to ME, it would not have been quite the struggle. 

I was so excited because for about six months after that I looked good. Then it was like I was starting all over again with the weight yo-yo. Because of the hysterotomy, it was a partial so I still had the ovaries, I started having hormonal issues. 

And I was having tons of migraines and bouts of vomiting/diarrhea. My body decided to head into semi-menopause and my weight and then COVID destroyed even more plus working night shift in an ER for 5 years, stress, not doing all the stuff I once loved to do, and I gave up again. Settling between 195-205.

In November 2021, I was horribly sick and in the ER on the day after Thanksgiving. This started a year long journey of multiple ER visits, doctor visits where I was being told to lose weight but not being offered any ideas HOW. I was told to go off of gluten by a doctor that was covering for my doctor and I felt better. 

Finally in February of 2023 I was diagnosed with high gluten intolerance by my doctor and the other doctor read the report (the one that had told me to go off of gluten) and said I had celiac. 

I was not given anything other than don't eat gluten by my doctor and to lose weight. The other doctor directed me to blogs and the like for help. 

The hardest part of this journey, that is still continuing, is that medical professionals don't really seem to want to help you because there is no money in healthy people. So, I have decided to do my own health assessment and see where I will go with that in another blog. Thank you for reading and I hope my struggle has helped some of you to not feel so alone in the world. 

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