I saw the doctor yesterday, to go over the numbers from my blood work. I knew we would talk about my high Cholesterol and Triglycerides. What I wasn’t prepared for were the questions asked about low levels of Neutrophils and high levels of Monocytes.
Wait…Neutro what and Mono huh?! I was asked questions like, “Have you been sick recently? Have you had any infections?” You see, these new words are all about my white blood cell counts. As I answered the questions, I didn’t think much of them. In fact, I was pretty unconcerned for hours until I decided to sit down and look closer at my paperwork, which, of course, led me to Googling the meaning of these little white boogers.
I am scared by what I read. It’s not a good thing to have low levels of Neutrophils and high levels of Monocytes. This has raised a little flag with my doctor. In three months I am to return to have blood work drawn so they can re-check these numbers.
This undoes me more than anyone can even imagine.
Upon reading all of this, I headed for the bedroom. I could feel my emotions building. My husband (who’s this amazing guy, who totally loves, accepts and just gets me…) was on the phone with someone, but as soon as he saw me he knew something was up. He hung up, came over to where I was holding up two pieces of paper and said, “Okay…what’s going on?” Tears spilled out of me as I explained these two words I had never heard in my whole life and then I proceeded to tell him what I found out when I Googled them (thankfully, he also refrains from rolling his eyes…he knows and doesn’t really approve of my Googling antics). I told him I saw words like, lupus, cancer…leukemia (the word that I detest as it took my dad’s life), inflammatory disease, infections, etc. I told him, “I’m frightened by this.” He just listened, nodding his head as I poured it all out and then reminded me that our home hasn’t really been the picture of good health this year. The beginning of the year had us all wrapped up in that awful flu going around, which has left both of us with lingering coughs and sinus issues. We have a little family living with us, where our two youngest granddaughters have often seemed to have a little fever or sniffle of some sort. He said, “It’s possible that our bodies are working overtime to fight on the inside and because of our malnourished way we’ve been eating, it’s taking is toll on you.” His sensibility always lifts and encourages me. We talked a little, prayed a little, and then he went back out to the living room to watch the baseball game.
I, on the other hand, took to Googling. 🙂 I’ll admit it right here…I’m an addict of many things. I decided to look up natural ways to increase my Neutrophils and decrease my Monocytes. Well, guess what? I found out that nutrition and exercise is a big factor! I also read that inflammation can cause these levels to get out of whack. Do you know what body fat does? It causes inflammation that messes with your immune system. Hmmm.
Don’t get me wrong…I know that being overweight is unhealthy on so many levels…but this was something in black and white, numbers that rocked my foundation and scared the crud out of me. I can’t stop asking myself, “How did I get to this?!” “Why haven’t I taken better care of myself?! I’ve always just looked at this like I just make poor choices and eat too much. But it has to be more than that. What causes me to sabotage a perfectly good day of eating well? What causes me to look for something sweet to eat when everyone has gone to bed…knowing that once I eat it, I will hate myself for it? What causes me to not care that I’m overweight, over 50, with hypertension and a family history of heart issues?
This is ALL about emotional eating. ALL about some type of behavioral thing going on inside of my heart that causes me to continue down this road. This isn’t going to be a quick and overnight fix. It’s going to take me diving into myself and recognizing what triggers me to head down the wrong road.
Years ago, I met a man my husband worked with. I sure liked this huge guy. Every time I saw him, he was an absolute delight to chat with. I found out that he had Diabetes, but he just continued to eat the worse things possible for his body and in huge amounts. I remember being so shocked and saying to my husband, “How can he continue eating that way? If I were given a ‘sentence’ like that, I’d change everything to save my life.” That conversation comes back to me and haunts me all the time. My sentence is different, but I do have an affliction and I’ve done absolutely nothing to save my own life.
I know I keep saying, “This is my wake-up call” but friends…I am telling you today that this is definitely my call to action, my call to WAKE UP!…my motivation to be victorious on this journey once and for all.
Skinny is the bi-product of good health, but good health MUST be my focus! My body…what’s going on inside of me…is fighting. The battle is real and I’m worth it. Today, I’m committed to digging my heels in, diving in deeper, getting my eyes focused forward, not looking back…and fighting this battle.
And just for the record…I am down three pounds already and my bp reading at the doctor’s office was 133/68 (that’s awesome!). At my meeting last week, I committed to measuring and tracking what I’ve been eating. While I haven’t been perfect, I’ve been very mindful to pay attention and track ALL that goes into me. As soon as I post this, I’m heading to the kitchen to cook up some eggs and steamed broccoli for breakfast, and then heading out for a 2-mile walk.
Thanks for being here and joining me on the journey.
2 thoughts on “Focus Forward”
So happy for you that you are re-starting this journey. It is a tough one!!! Talk to me tomorrow about this too!!!!
Wow Cindy!! What a wake-up call to me this is!!! All the way in Florida, it brought tears to my eyes. Tomorrow morning I go to get the results of the heart monitor, EKG and Echocardiogram on my heart because I too have let the stress of caring for my brother and sister-in-law and my sadness at their terminal conditions cause me to eat my way to bad health. Thank you sister for once again speaking truth into my life. I miss you and your wisdom. Thanks so much for sharing.