Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Iron Deficient!


I am ridiculously excited to say, "I am iron deficient!"  I suppose I should back up.

I have been having a handful of funny symptoms for a while...some of them for a long-enough-to-get-"the"-look-from-my-doctor while.  It got to the point where I decided, much like trying to avoid weighing in when I know I've made poor choices, not knowing what was going on in my body didn't change the fact that something was going on & I had to go get checked out. 

I won't go into what the symptoms are, but I will say that some of the potential diagnoses had me a bit rattled for the last week--not because they were life threatening, but because they were self-worth threatening.  Of my doctor's two primary theories, the first seemed implausible because I hadn't exhibited the primary over-arching symptom.  While a little scary sounding, I just wasn't that concerned.  Her second theory was a thyroid issue. 

Many people struggle with thyroid problems & many of those are able to get treatment & be quite happy.  Here was what had me shaken:  What if I have a thyroid issue that would have caused me to lose weight?  What if I lost my weight as a symptom of a medical condition rather than a symptom of hard work? 

I was pretty inconsolable for a couple of teary nights.  At first I was just beside myself at the possible explanation, but then I was upset for being upset.  Had I really pegged so much of my self-worth on being thinner?  Had I pinned all of my feelings of purpose on shedding pounds?

Not exactly.  As I picked through my feelings & wiped up my tears I realized that it's not specifically about the weight as a physical thing, it's about the weight as an accomplishment.  For years I was a can't-do kind of girl, a quitter.  Tackling my food demons & reigning in my weight marked the beginning of an all-new can-do me.  The success rippled into other areas of my life until I was trying cooking & gardening & re-purposing & exercising & running & racing & dancing &...

The cornerstone of New Sara is that I acknowledged that I have a problem after which I made & consistently executed a plan to fix it.  What if the execution wasn't me at all?  What if it was a wonky thyroid?

I'll never know how I would have actually responded, but I had gotten myself to a relaxed head space that was more ready to accept that there may have been a piece of the puzzle that was out of my hands but that doesn't change the other 99 pieces that I worked hard for.  My thyroid didn't make me fill my fridge with produce.

Instead I have to take iron supplements--plain old, ordinary iron supplements!  I also have to lay off the blood donation, so someone out there--yup, I'm talking to you--needs to start donating to pick up the slack for me for a little while.  It only takes an hour & you know you've felt like you should, so do it already!  Some kid in a car accident this weekend will thank you.

Though admittedly awful, my best Popeye face.
As for me, I'm going to channel Popeye & go "eats me spinach"--& an iron supplement, too.

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