Wednesday, July 11, 2012

The Running Bug and Other Things I Just Realized...

   I guess I have never told my whole running story. Sure, I have told you about Isabel and what motivates me to run a half marathon, but I don't think I have ever told anyone my full running story. The truth is, I am still trying to figure that out, but here is what I have so far.
   Five years ago, my mom had a heart attack and went into cardiac arrest and had a stroke the day after my wedding. She was being pronounced dead at my parents house with my father and sister watching when they found a heart beat. Not a beating heart, just a single heart beat. The medical team that rushed to our house then rushed her to the hospital where my mother had a stint put in and was in a coma for 3 long days. During that time we didn't know if she would live. And if she did live, we were told that she would probably have an impaired life due to the stroke, which they still weren't sure how serious it was until she woke up. Then on day 3, my mom awoke from her coma, dazed, but alive and fully functioning. We brought her home from the hospital with in that week and 5 years later she is doing pretty good, for a woman that died!
   While she was in the ICU, her Cardiologist warned my siblings and I that we now had a high risk of heart attack and that we should do everything in our power to stay healthy. And that scared me, for about 6 months. Then the life of being a full time student, part time employee, and wife took over and I didn't think much about what I was doing to myself. Then Mark and I decided to have a baby. And we waited and waited and waited. Finally, 15 months later a doctor decided I should be fertility tested. They ultrasound me and did blood tests only to find...nothing they could diagnose as one thing or another. Yeah, my hormones looked like I might have PCOS, except I didn't have high enough testosterone levels or cysts. My periods, when they did come, might signal endometriosis, but I also didn't have that. In the end, they could see I has hormone problems that lead to my infertility, but couldn't give those problems a name. So two months after my first doctor's appointment, I was put on Clomid, a fertility drug. Mid cycle they did some testing and decided I didn't respond at all to the drugs. I knew I had, but the hormone tests said I didn't. But I stood my ground and was told to come in at day 30 for more tests. Day 30 came and they gave me a urine pregnancy test. That came up negative. My doctor assured my I didn't ovulate and that I should start the progesterone to start the next cycle, this time on stronger drugs. I went home crushed. And cried. And knew deep down they were wrong. The very next day I was walking home from my evening class and I knew something was up. I was tired and didn't feel right. But, after the day before, there was no way I was going to take another pregnancy test. Still, by the time I got home, that nagging voice in my head convinced me to take one more test then start the drugs again. So I did. And it was positive. My doctor, not believing me, sent me to a blood test. Yep, still pregnant. And I remained pregnant until Isabel was born 35 weeks later.
   Then the third ah ha moment came when I was pregnant with Addison (which I needed no fertility drugs to get!). I had a horrible pregnancy with Addison. I produced too much relaxin and developed Symphysis Pubic Dysfunction, or SPD. SPD left me unable to walk much or lay on the bed or stand too long or anything without EXTREME pain. I had to sleep in our recliner and was basically on bed rest from 20 weeks on. Then they were never quite sure if Addison was really healthy, until she was born. So that lead to 38 weeks of sure terror. It was hard to get to excited about her arrival when we weren't sure if she was even going to come home with us. They decided that she for sure didn't have Anencephaly, but couldn't rule out Hyrodcyphaly for sure until she was born. Then I had a doctor that cried wolf and insisted, due to my huge weight gain this pregnancy, that I must have diabetes, which I didn't, or needed a c-section, which I didn't. Oh, and if all this wasn't enough, I then got high blood pressure the last week of my pregnancy. By the time I came to the hospital in labor, my blood pressure was like 160/110 or something like that. Which would explain the unstoppable headache I had. 
   All of this together made me realize that I had to do something so I would never be in that position again. And while it took us a year to actually start a real running program, I can say that I have treated myself better than I ever have in my life. And now I love that my body is capable of running. That I can go run for an hour. I love this and crave it. I think all the time about the training tips I read and about how my next run will be. It is a marvelous change. And even weirder, I have the running bug. I used to tease my running friends about it, but trust me, it is great. And I hope that this lifestyle change can prevent myself from a heart attack, or more infertility, or another high risk pregnancy of my own body's making.

1 comment:

  1. Wow! Those are some awesome reasons to start. I love when the Doctors try to tell you something that you definitely are not. I was told I was on the verge of diabetes. Never got it! Thankfully!

    But, keep running! I can't wait until December!


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