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I promised I would do this, so I am. I was going to sit on this and think about it, but that's just another excuse for not posting it. I feel like Holly in saying I hope it's not too melodramatic or too long.....
I originally found Healthy Living through Sheryl, a very dear friend. Like some of the others here at Healthy Living, I am not overweight, but do have my own challenges.
Ever since I was a child, I was always told I was "frail" because I had asthma. I could never do the things that other people could do because of my "special condition". If I went anywhere, I had to have half a medical cabinet with me. A breathing machine was a staple in my suitcase when I travelled. I couldn't exercise, because that might induce an asthma attack. I led a sedentary life and ate horribly. Not surprisingly, I was a very unhealthy person for many years.
Less than a year ago everything changed. I went to the Mayo Clinic. Specialists found that I did not have asthma; rather I have a rare structural flaw in my lungs that affects my breathing. There was a chance that an operation could remedy the problem permanently.
They tried the operation. Unfortunately, the procedure required is much more serious than originally thought – there is a high mortality rate for the procedure. We weighed the risks and came to the decision that as long as I led a functional life, we wouldn't try the operation. Right now, there is nothing to be done except to go for semiannual visits to the Mayo and hope my condition will not deteriorate.
But suddenly, I didn't need medication. The breathing machine now gathers dust in my closet. I got the go-ahead to start exercising like any normal person would – and I did. I have spent the last year discovering what my body can do, now that I have most of my limitations lifted. I have enjoyed being able to do the things that normal people do. It's almost been like being blessed with a new body.
My condition has not deteriorated – yet. There will come to a point where it will, but I don't know when that will be. I need to be ready for when that moment comes and I need the operation. I need to be the strongest I can be to get through it, because there is so much that I want to do.
There are still limitations – I can't afford to put any more stress on my lungs. I can't afford to gain weight in any way. I need to stay healthy. My husband told me the other day that he was proud of me for exercising. My immediate answer was "I have to be strong for the operation." While there are many motivators for my exercising, that is my main one.
Since taking such a disciplined view toward my health, I have tried to take that approach to other areas of my life – emotionally, spiritually, how I view work and my relationships. I still struggle in those areas, but my friends at HL always help me out.
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