Being Obese While Living With Other Conditions

  • How is the year going? 


    So far 2011 has been a mixed bag for me. It started with a nice belated Christmas gathering with my mother, boyfriend, and his mother.  Unfortunately, my boyfriend had a nasty cold so we each stayed in for New Year’s Eve.  I didn’t even watch the ball drop.


    In the first week of January, music lessons started back up again.  It was good to see the kids again after having been off for two weeks.  I really do like teaching eager kids.


    That first Wednesday, I felt a little off in the afternoon.  By my dinner break, I was burning up.  I took some Tylenol and tried to cancel my last student of the day.  (She didn’t get the message and we worked together anyway.)

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    Thursday morning, it felt as though a train had run over me and came back to punch me for good measure.  And I felt feverish again.  This time I took some Naproxen for the same.  It helped somewhat.


    I didn’t really put two and two together until speaking with someone that evening.  She thought that it sounded like I had the flu.  I was probably not thinking so clearly because the fever slows down my nerves literally.  My MS symptoms were flaring because of it.  Not only couldn’t I walk straight, I couldn’t think straight.


    Friday morning I woke up feeling every bit as horrible as Thursday.  I called my doctor to get an appointment that afternoon.  Then I took more Naproxen which I thought helped some.  But I was still having trouble walking straight.


    When I got to the 3:00pm appointment, I was running a fever of 101.3 although I had taken a medication which claims to also be a fever-reducer.  We tested for strep throat (negative) and made sure that I didn’t have pneumonia.


    (I’ve had pneumonia twice before and the first time I was seen on a Friday and proclaimed to have clear lungs when on the following Sunday I was in the emergency room not able to breathe.)


    I was offered Tamiflu and I said, “yes, please.”  I ended up having a fever for six days in a row, only to return on the eighth day.


    This past Monday and Tuesday, my RA flared horribly.  I couldn’t bend my fingers to type even.  I couldn’t really bend my ankles to walk.  My shoulder seemed locked in place.  It was horribly painful and discouraging.


    By Tuesday night, it was apparent that I was having some sort of allergic reaction.  My hands and arms were so red and itchy.  So I brought out my in-house pharmacy and took some Benadryl.  (Have I ever mentioned that I really don’t like taking drugs?)  I found relief from the itching and needed to repeat the process on Wednesday.


    So far during this bout of the flu, I had managed to have clear sinuses.  But alas that did not last and my nose decided to get involved.  It is still involved this Saturday morning and probably will be involved for several more days.


    So what’s the point in sharing all of this on a website devoted to obesity?


    Well.  I am not just a person living with one condition and I doubt that you are either.  I have multiple diseases and conditions and they each affect the one another.


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    During the first days of the flu, I ate lots of soup.  Chicken and tomato were favorites.  I also drank lots of Gatorade.  Easy to measure bottles to keep track of how much I was drinking.  But full of calories.  Grapes and oranges were nice to quench thirst and a parched mouth.


    My appetite was not so great and I had to make myself eat during the day.  It was a bit of a chore and I might have lost a tiny bit of weight in the process.  (I’ll weigh in again tomorrow to know for sure.)


    To wrap this up, let me ask you a question:


    What is your favorite food to eat when you have “the flu”? 


    Stay healthy.


    January 2, 2011
    Weight: 234.8 lbs


    January 9, 2011
    Weight: 235.7 lbs


    Lisa Emrich is author of the blog Brass and Ivory: Life with MS and RA and founder of the Carnival of MS Bloggers.

Published On: January 15, 2011