The TIA that I Needed
For the most part of my adult life, I had been able to maintain a healthy weight without rigorous exercise or watching what I ate. After the birth of my second child who was premature and very sickly, I began to progressively turn to food for comfort. Soon, I weighed over 200 pounds - the most I had ever weighed in my life.
I did no exercise, and began to feel sickly myself. I was first told I had rheumatoid arthritis. Then, that was changed to fibromyalgia. Finally, it was mentioned I may even have lupus. My cholesterol shot up, and my high blood pressure became even more unmanageable to where I was on almost ten medications every day. Mind you, I was 31 years old.
We have a history in our family of strokes, but it never occurred to me that I'd have to worry being so young. One afternoon, I took my two girls for a walk. By the time we got home, I was having trouble seeing and when I spoke, my speech was slurred - I was also having problems thinking of words. I was hot and then cold, shaking...heart beating irregularly.
I drove myself and my girls to the ER where I was admitted immediately. After 3 days and many tests, I was told I had a TIA but managed to get care in time to not have any apparent after effects. I was also advised that I have small vessel disease in my neck, so this was why I had consistent headaches. I was warned that unless I changed my lifestyle, a full stroke was imminent.
Shortly thereafter, I joined a gym and retained a personal trainer. I gave it everything I had and changed my eating habits as well. Six months later, I have lost almost 30 pounds. While it has been slow, I have kept it off even after eating more liberally.
I had no idea how important exercise and proper eating was, even at 30 years old. I figured I had the rest of my life to worry about what I was eating. Fortunately, now I do have the rest of my life ahead of me, except this time, I'll be in better shape!