This past week I had to check in with my cardiologist. Last summer, I checked in for sinus surgery only to find that my blood pressure was 263/195, so up I went to ICU for a week. Apparently, I have some kind of issue where my body is resistant to efforts to restrain my blood pressure and then proceeds to hike my blood pressure up even more. There’s a big long story behind it which I don’t feel like sharing so back to checking in with the cardiologist…
My cardiologist, Dr. M, is a pretty awesome dude. He’s very energetic, positive and sticks to the point. Dr. M really won me over at “contrary to what you hear about the medical profession, my goal is to never see you again. You seem like a nice person but I really want to get you off the meds and never need to see you in a medical situation again. I want you to get things under control.” When I left his office six months ago, I had a plan. I was going to exercise, eat right and blow him away with a 50 pound weight loss in six months. Fast forward to last week…I gained 26 pounds. From the second that my hyper little nurse said “step on the scale”, I knew it was all downhill from there. I was fuming. I believe my exact words were “damn shoes, of course I’d wear the heavy ones today.” She didn’t even acknowledge me speaking. By the time Dr. M came in, I started in with the whole I’m exercising, I’ve made big changes and yet I gained weight. He asked how my eating was and I admitted that I don’t eat the greatest but I’m exercising, doesn’t that count? He said that yes, the exercise is probably what kept me from gaining more than 26 pounds. I told him about trying Paleo, going gluten free, etc. Dr. M looked around and said “I’m not saying there’s anything wrong with those plans but it’s really about burning more calories than you’re taking in. Do you understand that? You can try anything that you want, but you have got to understand, you have to burn more calories than you eat. That’s it.” He gave me my paperwork and I asked when he needed to see me again and he said “I don’t. There’s nothing else I can do.”
Do you understand what that means? He’s given up on me. This wonderful doctor who saved my life in September 2013 has done all he can. I get it though. His practice is full of patients who swear they listen to him and yet he obviously can see that they’re not. How could I even defend myself against being bigger than I was 6 months ago AND my blood pressure elevating again? I couldn’t. I had failed. Dr. M is very passionate about being a cardiologist. Six months ago, he sat with me and explained all about a healthy heart and what we, yes – he said we, need to do to have a healthy heart. I was stoked at that appointment and he was stoked that I was stoked. Then I walked out of there and blew it all off.
I wanted to run back into his office and beg him to see me in six months, that this time I would have lost weight but why should he believe me? Between me and Dr. M, he had made a bigger effort than I had. I was disgusted. Not at my weight but that I had burst his balloon. Now I’ll just be another patient to him. I won’t be his success story. But stop! Collaborate and listen! (Couldn’t resist.) I can be his success story.
I emailed my nutritionist and told her what happened and how upset I was. I let it all out to her. She emailed me back and gave me a huge pep talk and chewed me out, both of which I needed. I woke up the next day at 5:30am and did yoga. I meditated and decided no more promises six months into the future. I will focus on today. One day at a time. And you know what? I’ve lost 7 pounds since that appointment but besides that, I’m tracking my food intake and focusing on what I’m putting in my body. I’m going to hang in there and keep trying. And someday, I’m going to show up at Dr. M’s office as a success story. I just know it.