Hello blog followers! I'm sure that many of you have stopped checking in here since I have all but quit blogging since December. If you've missed me, I'm sorry. The reason that I haven't been sharing with you for a while is not that there hasn't been anything going on around here. It is rather that there has been lots going on, but I haven't known whether or how to share it with you. I've decided to go ahead and fill you in because it feels like I just have to in order to feel free to share anything else.
I'll stop you right there before you let your imagination run amock. This has nothing to do with babies, whether Evie or future Hall babies - E is great and no others are planned in the near future. Nick and I are still happily married and very much in love. Nothing major or devastating has happened. But I have been going through a little health-related thing.
As any of my mom friends, and especially those of you who have nursed your babies know, while you are breastfeeding you are constantly going through hormonal and weight fluctuations. Then when you stop, things gradually return to normal. Things were going swimmingly with me up until December when I weaned Evie. Then my body went haywire! I'll spare you the details, but suffice it to say that my body was NOT acting like it should, in many, many ways.
I went to visit my doctor who conducted a number of tests - drew 6 or 7 vials of blood, ultrasounds, and finally a glucose tolerance test - yes, I got to repeat that most wonderful pregnancy milestone - and it turns out that I am insulin resistant.
Basically, in a totally oversimplified way, my body acts like it's diabetic. My body won't absorb the insulin in my blood, which in turn leads to high insulin levels, which drives my blood sugar level low, which makes me crave carbs and keeps my body from burning its own fat for fuel, in fact it encourages my body to store fat. It also throws off my other "female" hormones because insulin is a major hormone, which effects all those others. In that way, it can lead to PCOS symptoms in women, which I have been experiencing.
I am now taking Metformin, a diabetes drug. which helps my body use the insulin I'm making and will, hopefully, decrease my insulin levels over time, which should help my body return to normal overall.
Why am I telling you all this? Well, for one thing this whole process has taken from January through now and has been very distracting. When I've had time and energy I've been researching insulin resistance and trying to learn what I can about how to best control it. But energy is a whole other issue. Because my blood sugar is always borderline low, and I take care of a toddler all day, I simply haven't had much energy to spare lately.
I've also just felt like this was the biggest thing happening in my life, and I didn't know how to talk about anything else without referencing it. It felt somehow deceptive. But now it's off my chest, and I feel like I can fill you in on the rest of our lives again!
Before I bid you adieu I'll answer a few questions that I usually get asked when I tell people about my little issue. First, insulin resistance is really a genetic thing. You don't "get" it or "cause" it. The two biggest risk factors for developing it are obesity and a family history of Type II diabetes. (I have neither). But if it's in your genes, you'll develop it. I just got really unlucky. Yes, it does mean that I have a heightened risk for developing Type II later in life. I'm not really sure how this will play out. When you are overweight you can lower this risk by losing 7-10% of your body weight and beginning a regular exercise routine. While I hope to lose some "vanity weight" I am already at a healthy body weight, and I already exercise regularly. Maybe my lifestyle will stave it off into my old age, but maybe there's nothing I can do to stop it. I guess we'll see!
If you have read this far, thank you. I promise to post more uplifting information in the future. If you know me well, you know that "full disclosure" is definitely my MO, and I really just couldn't keep this from you.. Next up, a beach post!