Thanksgiving, Surgery, and Other Stuff

Hello Everyone,

Well, I don’t have anything big to report this time…and I’m thankful for that! My weight’s held steady, all of my other bodily functions have continued to occur like clockwork as they should, and I’m happy. My final Fall term of my undergraduate career is wrapping up, and BOY, I can’t believe how fast it’s gone. All of you who haven’t gone through college…It’s true that it FLIES by! I was asked the other day if I’m ready to be done with college (though I am still planning on going to nursing school), and my answer was a very firm “No”! I’m having an absolute blast this year. I’m loving where I’m living and the friends I’m living with, I’m loving my classes (for the most part!) and finding microbiology much more interesting than I thought I would, I love my job managing the gymnastics team, and overall, I’m really just loving life. Do I still have days where I feel off? Yeah, of course. But I’m no longer consumed by something that casts down so heavily on my soul. The sky being gray and gloomy outside doesn’t cause me to sink further into depression, my jeans being a little more snug than they were the day before doesn’t cause a panic attack, and a restaurant being out of the meal I was planning on having is just a reason to try something new. Thanksgiving normally brings with it a ton of stress, drama, and anxiety. This year though, for the first time in as long as I can remember, that wasn’t the case. My brother and I joined our dad, stepmom and stepsister on a trip to spend five days with my dad’s parents in California, and while there were plenty of uncertainties and events that could’ve triggered a plethora of adverse responses, they didn’t. I counted the other day, and I think I ate out 12 days in a row until I returned back to school yesterday. Is that ideal? No. But did I handle it? Yes. It was just the circumstances that arose over those couple of weeks, and I made it work. Now, I can (hopefully!) get back into my routine, but I feel like it’s situations like that that cause me to gain more confidence in myself and trust in my body. I made healthy choices for the most part during those 12 meals out, but I also went with the flow. I went for walks in the morning (and a short run, twice) during our trip, but I didn’t go out of the way to find a place I could go lift, or go buy a guest pass to a fitness studio for a week like I would’ve done in the past. I recognized that it was just five days of vacation, and while I really missed getting a good workout in, it didn’t harm my body. My clothes still fit, and I’m still me! If anything, the break helped me to come back stronger. While I didn’t feel particularly powerful in the gym today, I did certainly feel ready to get back into it, and was more pumped for my lift than I’ve been in a while!

I just realized that I don’t think I’ve posted on here that I had to have a third surgery (all within 10 months) on my wrists a little over two weeks ago. This was my second on my left hand/wrist, the other (third) being on my right one last December. This was another reason for me eating so many meals out: It’s a lot easier to purchase and eat a meal than it is to cook it when you only have one hand! Anyway, because of that, I also haven’t really been able to get in a “good” workout for a while. I didn’t do any cardio from the day I had surgery (November 9th) until I went for the two runs I just mentioned while in California, and when I say they were short, I mean short (we’re talking 15-20 minutes). I can’t lift any weights with my upper body until at least 8 weeks post-op, so my return to the gym today was solely leg focused. I’m pretty bummed about the muscle I know I’m going to lose in my upper body (I’d actually been making a lot of progress the last few months), but I’m also just that: bummed. I’m not devastated, or distraught, or in a wave of panic. I’m bummed, and that’s okay. I know that I can get it back, and I love my body for possessing the strength to get it back once it’s healthy again.

I’m so, so thankful to be in the headspace that I’m in, and I celebrated this Thanksgiving thinking of how thankful I am to have made the progress in my recovery that I have this past year. I am continually so thankful for everyone who has helped me to get to this place that I’m in, namely my family, treatment team, and close friends. I have more to be thankful for than I can even comprehend.

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Brad and me in California last week

Here’s a belated “Happy Thanksgiving” greeting from me!

Bridge

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Oh, Happy Day!

Hi Everyone!

I just had to pop back on here to share an update of some VERY exciting news.

Drumroll, please…

I started my period today! For the men that are reading this (which I know some are!) I’m sorry if this seems like TMI, but I didn’t feel I could not blog about this. I haven’t had a period in 19 months, and a regular one in five years. A period is symbolic of so many things, the most important to me being that my body is finally returning to a state of equilibrium. I have had to work SO hard to get my period back this time around. Each time I’ve lost it, it’s been hard to get it to return, but this time was by far the most difficult. It makes sense, as my psychiatrist told me that each time you lose your menstrual cycle, the body requires a higher amount of body fat before it will begin it again. It has to do with the body not trusting that you’ll continue to provide it with the nutrients it needs, and that it will continue to have an adequate fat supply. I had to go above and beyond the initial weight range that was set for me, abstain from cardio exercise for over a year and a half, and be conservative with the strength training that I’m doing. I was constantly living in a state of taking care of my delicate body. I was always having to be careful. I was intentionally consuming more fats every day, and having my hormone levels tested via blood draws once a month. I no longer have to do these things, as this was the last thing my treatment team was waiting on before declaring me “healthy” and fully, finally, weight restored.

My body is no longer delicate, it is STRONG. I don’t have to worry anymore about my bone mass deteriorating prematurely every day, or about being unable to have kids. The damage that I’ve done to my body in those regards are still valid concerns, but they are no longer getting progressively worse. It’s only uphill from here.

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Marionberry Rosemary, Lemon Lavender, Cold Brew & Pumpkin Spice. Yum!

How did I celebrate this great news, you may be wondering? Well for one, I went out and bought a box of tampons! That’s a purchase I haven’t had to make in a while! And secondly, I enjoyed some donuts from a local donut shop in Corvallis that I’d been wanting to try with my boyfriend. He didn’t know they were celebratory donuts, but I did 🙂 Some things you just don’t share with boys!

 

Okay, now it’s back to writing my research paper. I really do prefer writing for my blog! Unfortunately, that’s not what I’m going to school for!

As always, if you’re reading this, thank you so much for walking this journey with me. Today my family is praising Jesus for the miraculous work that He has done and continues to do in our life.

Also, shoutout to my incredible treatment team! I (of course) contacted all three of them as soon as I could and my dietician actually got emotional! I 100% believe that I would not be where I am today without them, and I am SO thankful that they’ve stood by my side throughout this entire journey.

In Him,

Bridge