Friday, October 7, 2011

Starting up anew

Dear Me (Since no one else is reading),

I was looking to start a new blog about trying to be healthy in my 31st year. But while trying to think up a catchy new blog title I thought, "Hey, I like this one!". So I'm going to keep it. Plus, LBIO is like a little online reflection of my life and my life has simply changed directions now. When I started LBIO I was a 27 year old single party animal...hitting up New York: working, going to school, eating, drinking, and living hard.

Now in 2011 I'm 31 and married living in sub-tropical climate S. Florida. Man what a difference a few years can make. The last couple of years have been a hard and slow wake-up call to how I was living and how it affected my health. Here is what has been going on.

In 2007 I was diagnosed with a uterine fibroid. No big deal it was smaller than a pencil mark. I went to acupuncture, it solved my symptoms and I went on living my usual life full of fast food, alcohol, caffeine, etc. But by 2009 things changed dramatically. I remember getting my period that November and just writhing in sudden, intense pain. I had never experienced anything so painful in my life- the previous summer I had experienced two ovarian cysts rupture and although the pain was severe it went away in an hour. This pain would continue to come and go for the next 3 days, rendering my life unliveable for those days.

As my symptoms (aka pain) got worse and worse every month I went to the doctor over and over. My fibroid had now grown to 3cm. My body was treating this like a pregnancy every month and trying to "deliver" it. That's right folks: imagine going into labor every month for 3 days. I cried, begged, and learned to go deep into the pain with meditation. Sometimes I could actually "see" the pain hitting me like waves. I read up on everything and learned that dairy is a main problem for fibroids. So I cut it out completely for 3 months. No symptom changes. Acupuncture did nothing either this time. I had one minor surgery that didn't work. Things just got worse and worse. Finally by November 2010 I couldn't take it anymore. I went back to the doctor to discover that my fibroid was now 5cm (the size of a 3 month old pregnancy). I cried a lot. It seemed like nothing I did helped. I had surgery again in January 2011. My fibroid was officially gone, but the pain has still not retreated. It's not nearly as bad as before but it has now been joined by vomiting before my period. PMS gone way, way awry.

My first reaction to the continued misery of my symptoms was to just indulge. I wanted my old life back dammit! I want to drink and eat however I want, whenever I want. Fast food, mac and cheese, and coca-cola! I've been on back to back birth control pills for the last 4 months to avoid the pain cycle and get some kind of sanity back in my life, to feel like I can have some kind of control.

But in the last two months I've watched two amazing documentaries. 1) Fat, sick, and nearly dead and 2) Forks over Knives...these movies led me to read the following books: 1) The China Study, 2) Crazy, Sexy, Diet 3) Eat to Live and 4) Eat for Health. All this information has convinced me more than ever that a vegan, low-fat, low-sugar diet is the best way to go and will give me the best hope for naturally fixing my PMS-on-crack symptoms as well as avoid the pitfalls of my family history including, but not limited to: heart disease, stroke, MS, and breast cancer.

But knowing and doing are totally separate things. For the past two months I've drastically increased my intake of raw and cooked vegetables, healthy grains, and more fruit. I cringe at the thought of how few vegetables I have eaten over the years. Cheese might has well have been the only food group! But today I'm still definitely not to 100% vegan. I still eat WAY to much fast food. I still drink WAY to much coca-cola. And if my husband brings cheese into the house I will eat it up in a matter of hours. I've never been to good on willpower as any former reader of the old Daisy remembers.

So anyway, I'm starting up again to chronicle my ups and downs with trying to be vegan and ditching the fast food and delicious coca-cola. It's tough. My family definitely doesn't believe this is healthy so I have to constantly be a one-woman information campaign. I'm not a good cook nor do I really enjoy it. My husband loves his meat and I'm not about to make him stop eating it on my behalf. Restaurants are my greatest downfall. I miss all my old faves. It's hard to eat a salad when there is mac and cheese on the menu.

We have found 3 meals right now we both enjoy that can be prepared both vegan and non-vegan. Tacos, spaghetti, and an asian marinated grill meal that he makes with tofu for me and chicken for him. It's seriously good. But then again I'm blessed with a seriously good cook for a husband.

Anyway, my new life doesn't resemble anything like my old one and sometimes I miss her but part of my new journey is finding joy in living healthy. So let's go!

And P.S. I'm drinking a Coke right now!

No comments: