I had been told I was slowly dying by Dr. Bonnie Nowak, MD in 2010. She gave me two choices: (1) Start planning my funeral; or (2) Change your lifestyle for the better. I opted for #2.
I had extremely high glucose sugars (560 were the average); extremely high blood pressure; my triglycerides were off the charts (over 1500+) and my cholesterol could not be measured because of my triglycerides.
I had massive joint pain in my ankles, knees, hips. Constantly my legs and hands would go numb. I had severe sleep apnea and was dependent upon a CPAP and a mask since 2004. I took it everywhere and for any type of sleep too. When I wasn’t at my job, I would be sleeping any time of the day, for excessive amounts of time.
Energy levels were zero. I was tired all time. I was angry all the time. I realize my zodiac sign is Cancer. And that being a moon child and all, we tend to be moody but I was beyond moody.
I developed almost a secret world of being a hermit. I absolutely hated going out in public, let alone any type of family function. Once upon a time, I was a social butterfly but I was nothing but a large mass of a barely breathing human being.
Also at that time, my insurance company kept telling me that I was wanting the Gastric Band surgery for glamour purposes. I had 14 specialists/providers write in on my behalf to the then-said insurance company urging them to reconsider. But to no avail.
Fast forward, April 2012.
I changed providers after Dr. Nowak moved to Fort Collins, CO … and found a Super Hero PA-C named Lori Ranek. She is a true champion to fight for the underdog (aka me).
The photo to the left was taken =in January 2013.
Changes have been huge.
All of my joint pain has vanished. My feet have shrunk a full size and two widths. All of my edema is gone. I barely could fit normal size socks over my then ginormous calves, now anything fits. I went from a size 36 (5x) to size 16 (0x) as of June 2013 and still losing inches.
April 2013, ALL of my sky-high deadly numbers for my Type 2 Diabetes, etc …. Normal range. I went from taking 14 pills to 5 pills as of now, August 2013. While I still wear my CPAP, I have been sleeping without it and have not woken up choking. And I now only take naps when I am really really exhausted, which is rarely.
I want to exercise — and I want to learn how to run successfully too. I have shed my hermit lifestyle. I am more vocal, active and more social.
I am a completely different human being now. And I like the person I have become.
*** UPDATE *** DECEMBER 2017 *** FOUR YEARS LATER ***
As of July 6, 2017, my provider, Lori Ranek, PA-C, at Bon Homme Family Clinic in Tyndall, South Dakota gave me a clean bill of health. All of my labs came out NORMAL!!!! And I am now only taking 2 (two) prescriptions plus one multivitamin. I still have my CPAP but when I go on trips or overnight visits, I do not bring it along. I also have excellent health insurance right now and I received my final lap band fill on December 1, 2017 from the Surgical Institute in Sioux Falls, SD. My original surgeon, Dr. Michael Haley, MD, from Mitchell, SD, retired in 2016. I was referred to Dr. David Strand in Sioux Falls. My lap band now holds 10 – 3/4 cc’s of saline solution. I have a large band and it holds 14 cc’s total.
In April of 2017, I joined the Wheat Belly lifestyle. I have eliminated all wheat and all grains from my diet. I have revered my Type 2 diabetes; my depression/anxiety and my life long year round allergies since April.