Wednesday, August 4, 2021

Birthday Year in Review -- #Blaugust2021 Day 4

 It's my birthday! We've got a fun day planned and I even slept in a bit. So, it's time for a bit of a review. What a strange year it has been . . . and the theme of this year has been . . . 


. . . and dealing with the results of stress.

1- The Pandemic -- Just in general, being cooped up and working remotely has been pretty stressful for me. Trying to keep track of kids going to school remotely while working my job is not ideal. My wife is an educational assistant, so she worked at the school most of the year. I, on the other hand, pretty much was the only responsible parent around, and keeping the kids in check fell upon my shoulders. Add to this that I'm a people person, and being isolated wasn't great.

2- Hellish Power Outage -- I can't tell you how stressful that week was without power. The worry and helplessness that came from that was pretty real.  We worked it out, but that week had a long shadow.

3- Sell of KingsIsle -- The announcement that KingsIsle was being sold to Gamigo was a huge out of left field thing that kinda hit me with a right hook. I really had some heartbreak going on here because I love KingsIsle and for a while I felt like I was one of the faces of KingsIsle for so many players because of our KI Live Livestreams. It took a lot to say goodbye and realize that I wasn't going to be a part of that company anymore. I was also saying goodbye to so many friends and coworkers all at once.

4- Job Change -- I was safely picked up by the new company born out of the sale of KingsIsle, so I didn't miss any paychecks. In fact, I got a promotion out of it. But, there were a lot of unknowns that we all had to be patient about. What insurance do we have? What about my oodles of PTO? etc. etc.  It all got answered of course and everything worked out, but it just added to the stress.

5- Caffeine addiction -- I've often heard that video games are built on caffeine, but my caffeine and sugar addiction was real. I was doing stupid stuff too like drinking Coke back to back with eating jellybeans, so you know . . . it was a sugar addiction as well. Stress is bad enough, but there's nothing like a can of Coke to make you really feel that stress in your fingers and toes. It was leading to some pretty bad leg cramps in the middle of the night too, so you can add "interrupted sleep" to that list of stressors as well.

All of that was a disastrous cocktail leading up to the big crash in my life that I haven't really talked about on my blog yet.

6- Type 2 Diabetes -- A couple weeks after the hellish power outage, my body went into full rebellion and all of a sudden I just couldn't catch up to my thirst. I literally had 20 glasses of water that first day and I was still thirsty. I knew something was wrong, so I searched it online and that's when I knew . . . my stupid self had developed diabetes.  All the stress and sugar finally flipped the switch in my body and that was that. My father, mother, and one of my sisters all developed diabetes, and I should have been more careful because of this, but I didn't think about it.

I went to the doctor and he confirmed it . . . my blood was basically syrup in my veins at that point and it was so bad that I qualified for insulin. I didn't want insulin though, I wanted to go the diet route.

...and so I did.

The past 5 months has been a complete change for me as far as my diet goes. I've cut out sugar and carbs as much as I possibly can and created a diet that seems to work for me. My follow up visit with the doctor was a complete success. I dropped 40 pounds and got my blood sugar back to acceptable levels. I'm on Metphormin, which is actually a pretty common and cheap medicine to control diabetes, but I've had to make a complete life style change. So this year there won't be any traditional cake at my birthday. This year, the wife has a special "diabetic" cake for me as I head into my 50th birthday.

So I don't feel guilty when I say . . . this new birthday computer I'm typing on, with its $1000 video card inside and screaming speed, is so nice! 

It's a souped-up HP Omen . . . oh man, it's awesome!

I'm happy as can be. I'm in a better place now as I head into the back end of my life. Bring on the black balloons! Let's do this!

Happy Dueling!


Chrissy The Blesser said...

Happy half a century old! Welcome to the wise, senior set. You have certainly earned it. Wisdom comes from learning through trials and that you have. We need your delightful zaniness on this side of the half a centurion side. You are now a much respected Yoda with a Scooby Doo temperament. I think that will work just fine. Fierce hugs for getting through it and I send a mega helping of blessings & giggles to send you on your merry way. Much love, Chrissy.

Nimgimli said...

Happy Birthday and congrats on making the lifestyle choices and sticking to them!

Everwake said...

Happy Birthday! And congrats on all that weight loss! That seems like a tremendous amount of poundage in a very short time frame. I opted for a cup of coffee instead of another energy drink after I read your post.

Hannah @ Dragons and Whimsy said...

Okay I totally read this post title as it being your "birthday year". 😂 Happy birthday!

Stingite said...

@Chrissy -- TY! Always love those blessings and giggles from you!

@Nimgimli -- It was tough, but I'm happy with how it's turning out. Things are looking up.

@Everwake -- I'm still dropping a bit of weight, but it's coming off much slower now. Kind of crazy to look at pictures comparing me a year ago to today. If your family has a history of diabetes, treat it real for sure. I hear that after age 45, your chances start to double.

@Dragons -- LOL! TY! 50th birthday has felt like a year in the making for sure.