Sometimes health problems occur when you least expect them, problems that require you to change your lifestyle. This is a very hard task to take on, but if you don’t, your quality of life could be at risk. It could lead to a miserable existence if you don’t or death. This is hard to wrap your mind around. When you’ve been through mental illness, the news that you have another health problem can weigh heavily on your mental well-being. Changing your lifestyle is more than changing how you eat, how much you exercise, and how you live; it also means working on your thinking and how you feel about yourself.
My sugar has been running a little high for a while and I have cut down on eating candies and I drink a lot of unsweetened tea. Apparently that wasn’t enough. I went to see the doctor Wednesday for my carpal tunnel and they took my blood work. A couple days later a nurse called me to tell me my A1C was 6.3 and diabetes is 6.5. I’m only a few points from having diabetes. It was like a kick in the stomach.
My mind went crazy. I deserve diabetes. It’s my fault for getting so fat. I’m a fat pig. I don’t eat right and I have a big stomach. I gave myself diabetes. I knew I had a sugar problem and I didn’t take care of it. I’m going to die a miserable, awful, and painful death and it’s my fault.
I couldn’t help but hate myself for having a health problem. I didn’t need another problem. I’m still waiting for the doctor’s office to schedule me with an orthopedic doctor for my wrist. I have been worrying for a while about having another surgery, and now on top of that I’m worrying about how I can prevent myself from getting full blown diabetes. My mind is swirling in circles. My thoughts are out of control. Which should I worry about first? How to prevent an awful disease or is there something the doctors could do to my carpal tunnel other than surgery?
I messaged my friend and she told me not to be hard on myself. She said I needed to make a lifestyle change and from now on I need to think positive. Deep down I knew she was right. I have to make more serious changes to my life. I have to start eating better, I have to push myself to exercise, and I have to give up sugary sweets. I have to do this.
There is no more sneaking a candy bar, no more eating a doughnut while on the run, no more drinking pop in the mornings to wake me up, and no more meals out because I’m too tired and sore after work to cook. I have to pick healthy snacks when I’m watching television at night, I have to learn to plan healthy meals at home, and I have to push myself to exercise. This is a lot. Can I do this? I’ve tried diets in the past and never succeeded. This time I have to be successful.
To make these big changes I have to get my thoughts sorted out. Thinking this is my fault and I’m a fat pig is not going to help me change. I need to think positive like my friend told me to. I need to put my mind in a good place. I’ve overcome so much and I have never given up, even when things got really bad in my life, and I’m not going to start giving up now. I’m not a quitter and I’m determined.
My friend messaged me, “You can do this. Stay positive. Don’t be hard on yourself. It’s all up hill from now on and we will exercise.”
I have to fight those negative thoughts and worries. I have to find that determination I used to rise above bullying, to reach recovery from mental illness, and to kick cancer in the butt, to fight off diabetes. The worrying and self-destructive thoughts will not help me change my lifestyle. It’s not easy. I can’t flip a switch in my mind and shut them off. It’s a battle. I have to battle my mind, my cravings for junk food, and my lack of interest in exercising. I have to fight for me. I need to change for me.
Medical problems will come up in your life. Your mind will go to a dark place. You may have to change your lifestyle, and you’ll fear you can’t. You can make those changes. You had to make changes to fight mental illness and you have to make changes to stay healthy. You can do it. Don’t beat yourself up. Dig deep inside you and find your determination and fight.
I don’t know what will happen with my wrist, but I do know I can prevent diabetes. I will do whatever it takes to change my lifestyle and be a healthier me. Because I’m willing to do this, I know I will soon be standing even taller in the light of recovery.