Like most overweight women, I dread going to a doctor– especially, most especially, a new doctor.
You never know if a doctor is going go treat you like a second-class citizen if you’re obese. Worse? They’ll diagnose you fat before they listen to what brought you into the office in the first place. There are some great pieces about this on the Dances with Fat blog.
I scheduled an appointment for a regular check-up with my new doctor here in Florida because I hadn’t had one in a while. To my surprise, I had a wonderful experience. Not one person– the staff, nurses, or the doctor herself mentioned anything about my weight. Even after I weighed in on the scale. As part of the check-up, the doctor said she wanted to run a series of blood tests, and I complied willingly.
I took the blood tests and made a second appointment. The tests came back terrific. No problems with cholesterol, high blood pressure, diabetes, or thyroid. All within the normal range. The cholesterol could have slightly been better, but nothing to worry about at all. She did note that I had some B-12 issues, and I told her that was hereditary. I remember my father having issues as he aged. She was very concerned about this, and we set about to put a program in place to raise my levels.
Never once did she mention my size.
It’s as if I were a “normal” person, which in fact, I am. How refreshing. I will drink to that.
For the past few months, it’s been bothering me that I am grotesquely overweight. Although I don’t have high blood pressure or diabetes or any other indicator that I’m unhealthy (even my cholesterol levels are not terribly unhealthy), the truth remains I am morbidly obese. My BMI is 46 where it should be somewhere around 20 or so. I weigh 285.
As a professional, I spend a lot of time online. I work on the social web, so to speak. It occurred to me that I should try blogging about my journey to reinvent my body shape. When I started researching “fat” blogs, I came across Jennette Fulda’s amazing PastaQueen blog and story. As they say, if she can do it, so can I.
When I went through my divorce, I kept a journal online. It was invaluable to be able to express my emotions, my fears, and ultimately my joy when it was over. The journal was private, however. For this life-changing trek, I see the value in sharing my experience with others who are also struggling and with those who can offer encouragement and advice. It’s a little scary putting it all out there in the public domain, but that’s part of the problem with obesity. We’re afraid to deal with it head on.
So, with that short introduction, I’m beginning my trek. I don’t know where it will take me, how long it will take me, and whether I’ll ever succeed at tackling my obesity, but this is my attempt to begin. For now, I’m going to mask my real identity. I feel badly about that, but the real truth is, I’m ashamed of my weight problem. I’ll be talking a lot more about that in posts to come.