Lunch Date For One

Today marked a milestone for me because I did something I never pictured myself doing as a mom. Lately, I have felt a tug at my heart nudging me to treat myself out and do things for me. Dress myself up, get my nails done, do my hair and take myself out on a date.

Not only was it for myself but it made a very big impression and difference to my son. The sound of my son’s voice this morning when he saw me “mom you look beautiful” somehow made me feel even more special.

I drove around running errands and talking to my mom trying to figure out exactly where to treat myself. Just then my mom told me that I needed to find a little hole in the wall for the best experience.

Knowing that I am embarking on a lifestyle change to better my health and weight loss journey. I felt that it was important to find something a bit healthier than I am used to.

I came across this diamond jewel called “Los 3 Pollos” in the city of Compton. When I walked in the atmosphere was suttle. I stood looking at there huge menu with images of each item listed.

Finally, I decided on my purchase the half grilled chicken plate, rice, and beans, homemade tortillas, grilled onions and chili with fresh homemade salsa not to mention chorizo on the side.

In total, I paid $16.15 for my order chunk change compared to the amount of food I received. I sat down as the waiter brought me my food along with a cup of ice water. The music began playing and I somehow felt as though I were in an authentic restaurant in Mexico.

I had half a tortilla, two pieces of chicken, a piece of chorizo and some beans. Not only was the food good, inexpensive, and worth it but I had enough food leftover for my son and me to have dinner.

Today was a day I will never forget because I was able to put my thoughts aside and treat myself out. I got dressed up and enjoyed my own company. To top things off I made a better choice of food and portion control.

Not only did I take myself on a lunch date, but I even managed to not have to cook dinner success.

Weight Loss Journey

 

I have been diabetic for a few years now and a lot has taken place. The past few months have been a complete whirlwind for me but I completely desire a change. Not just a New Years’ resolution change, but I am ready for a lifestyle change.

I am ready to embark on a change that will affect my life for the rest of my life. I want this to be a positive change that will also spark a desire in those around me.

A year from now I want to look back at my life and know that I made the proper choice in getting my health, fitness, and weight together. So I have come up with a plan that will require persistence and dedication on my part.

I have taken some time and prayed about finding a new doctor who will have my overall health in their interest. The other day I called to schedule an appointment to follow up on my overall health.

I find it amazing when God works in mysterious ways and moves mountains to direct your pathway. What we thought was a mistake in scheduling my appointment turns out to be exactly what I prayed for.

In short next week, I will see a new doctor. I am going to be vlogging this doctor visit so that I can keep track of my journey. I want to allow the world to see exactly what I am doing in hopes that my journey will encourage and inspire someone else to change.

That’s when I heard a voice whisper

  

Days went by and although they were only days somehow it felt like months. An endless wave of unwanted people continued to pour in like a flood. Doctors telling me how my life was going to be from that point on, nurses telling me that I had to pace the hallways, and a dietitian attempting to show me how to eat by using percentages per meal.

There were times when I just sat up in bed thinking. Thinking about what I can’t recall, yet I became very familiar with the scene outside of the window. In my mind I pictured myself walking through mountains of leaves which had fallen from tree branches. I pictured myself out with family and friends having fun enjoying life. I pictured myself at home embracing my son while listening to his cute attempts of laughter. The reality was that I was in neither of those places. I was in a hospital bed surrounded by people I did not even know, and one particular nurse whom I did not trust. 

At some point, the doctor came in and told me the news that I had been waiting to hear the entire time I was there. “I think you’re clear to go home, someone will be in shortly to instruct you on giving yourself insulin. Congratulations and enjoy your new life.”

That was it and why am I being congratulated on my new life. In no way did I think that this was fair, nor did I think of it as a new life. In short, I got sick and now I’m being told to take medication for the rest of my life and oh by the way congratulations.

While I was getting my things prepared for home the nurse came in. I asked what was I doing and I told him that the doctor had come in, and told me that I was clear to go home. “No one leaves this hospital without my permission.” The very clear and frightful words that came out of his mouth. I tried not to get upset or rattled about it because deep inside I knew that I was going home and that what he said didn’t matter at this point. 

A few hours later after receiving coaching, tips, and discharge papers my brother arrived to take me home. Once I got there I sat on the couch, and that is when I heard it. God whispered to me in a gentle voice saying.

“I GAVE YOU GRACE”

He sat there looking at me……..

After I had briefly woke up from my sleep I looked up to notice that the tall thin nurse with the tattooed arms full of skulls was still there. He did not say anything he just looked at me yet I was too tired to ask questions or engage an any conversation. One thing is for sure although my mind was going a thousand miles a minute trying to recover I still thought to myself. Was this normal behavior?

When morning hit I woke up and found my roommate looking out of the window. She realized that I was up and thought to give me a bit of advice. “It’s not so bad being diabetic, because you can still eat what you want. You just have to know how to do it.”

Okay so let me get this straight I am in the hospital because I am diabetic. During the night shift I get watched by the nurse who seems to be a bit creepy. During the day my roommate decides to tell me how I can get around having to change my eating habits. This visit is starting out great right no its not.

A day or two had passed and I was still unable to eat, yet the crunched ice became my very best friend. Nurses came and went throughout the day and night, but I tried to brace myself and let them do what they had to do. This thought only lasted but so long, because in came a tall husky man who was breathing very heavy and sweating everywhere trying to take my blood. Vile after Vile and poke after poke still he got nothing. He leaned over and that is when he really began dripping all over the place and and breathing even harder. At some point I got tired of being poked and having nothing happen so I remember that I kinda yelled at him and told him to get out.

That night mystery nurse came walking in with a very stern look on his face. For some strange reason I was a bit scared but I kept my mouth shut. He began to tell me about how he had heard that I gave a hard time and refused to allow them to draw blood. No one told him that I was poked so many times, and even suffered a huge bruise on my arm without getting anything.

It must have been the worse night ever because I listened to this nurse as he told me stories of a very known motorcycle gang he hangs out with. It seemed as though this story went on and on with him detailing of them riding into the night and meeting up at secret bars. First of all I am African American and secondly it really did not seem as though this motorcycle gang was very friendly especially towards my kind.

Was this an act of intimidation, was this nurse secretly sending me a message, or was my mind just overreacting and he was really doing his job the best way he could……..

Struggling to stay alive…….(3)

Finally I was admitted into the hospital, and taken to a floor that was specifically for diabetics like myself. The push down the hallway was a bit different this time, because I knew that it had a purpose at its core.

Once I arrived to my room I was kind of surprised to know that I was expected to spend time here, and yet I was sharing a room. There was a bit of a challenge there being in a robe that did not completely close, and having a roommate whom I did not know.

After I was settled into my room it was nothing short of constant waves coming in and out. Waves of doctors and nurses all telling me what to do, how to do it, poking me trying to drain my blood because they could never have too much, taking my vital signs and loading me up with information after information. I was not used to this method nor did I understand it, and in fact I found myself a bit confused still trying to grip around the fact that I have an illness.

One of the hardest things to get used to was the fact that my potassium was very low, and I had to be “injected” around the clock with a high dosage of potassium. One this was not fun, two it was not only painful going in but excruciating. If I had to describe it for you perhaps it would be like having metal pumped inside, and as long as it was being pumped inside it hurt.

Not only was I being bombarded with doctors, nurses, information, potassium, blood drawn one vile at a time. I was also being injected with insulin very frequently, yes I completely am thankful because it was all in an effort of saving my life. Each time the nurses were successful at getting my glucose levels down they would somehow rise back up. I was not allowed to have any food I was on a strict fast, and the only thing that this girl was taking in were chunks of ice.

Night time approached as my nurse changed, and in walked some tall man with tattoos of skulls running down his arm. I had a very hard time understanding how he was even allowed to work in such an environment around patients with so many tattoos.

He pulled up a chair and sat next to my bed even though I was still confused and now slightly out of it being pumped with insulin and potassium and completely deprived of food. I described how I was feeling as he confirmed it and told me that it was kind of like having to come down off of glucose.

Some kind of way we got on a discussion about various things (kind of odd but okay). Then I recall him telling me stories about other diabetics and things that had taken place. For instance the story about a man whose glucose had dropped too low, and how he snapped. The man began to pick up things and destroying them. I also recall a story of a young women who had been hospitalized once and ended up back in the hospital because she was not taking care of herself.

Not that I am a rude person, and I get it I mean I really do. Tell me the stories that are more valuable in fear, so that I myself will be more than motivated to take care of health. This was a good tactic, but at the moment I was not feeling myself truth is I was sick, and needed time to heal before I digested anything. The last thing I remember was taking a look at him sitting next to my bed just staring at me.My eyes got heavy and rolled then I guess I went to sleep……………..

Struggling to stay alive……(2)

Although my drive to the hospital was not long. It seemed as though it was too quick, because deep inside I knew that I would have to stay and be admitted. I also felt as though my drive over was too short, and as though I was fighting to breath and have control over my body. Every breath I took was a struggle, and each time I moved any part of my body I was in pain and lacked the strength to continue doing so.

My mom pulled up to the emergency department as I slowly got out of the car, and made my way up the ramp. In my mind I played the sound of my sons voice over and over again. His laughter and babbles as he tried to pronounce words, yet even though he was not able to come with me there was no doubt in my mind that he was in good hands.

Stepping inside of the hospital site and sounds became so alarming, code blue being called over the loud speaker, children crying because they were hurt or not feeling well, people talking loud and yelling asking security and nurses how much longer they were going to have to wait. There were also the loud cries of those who were silent the ones whom either sat down or stood up not speaking a word, however their eyes told a completely different story. There eyes told a story of both pain and suffering with no where else to turn but the emergency room.

Because of the severity of my case (my glucose being too high) I was taken directly to the back where I was told that I was waiting to be placed in one of the Emergency Room beds. At some point I was taken to a room where my mother joined me after my oldest brother arrived to take care of my son. We sat there as she made jokes trying to cheer me up, and having conversations about my childhood to get my mind off of being in the hospital.

At that moment I realized that no matter how old I get I am always going to be my mothers child. I also realized that no matter how old my son gets he will always be my baby, and that no matter what I will support him the way my mom supports me.

Hours went by and to continue passing the time we began to watch movies and to talk about them. Finally a doctor came in to talk to me, and this is when it got all the more real. I was told the grim news that no one wants to here “Your diabetic”, and although I already knew this having been to my doctor earlier that morning it still sank in deep. The thought of having to take pills or insulin the remainder of my life just didn’t seem to be fair.

I listened to the doctor’s voice going in and out telling me how I was going to be hospitalized for a while. Listening to the doctor tell me that he was surprised with my glucose levels that I was not in a coma and that I was blessed. I listened to the doctor as he told me that my life had changed, and that now we had to deal with what was at hand.

The long, hard, painful, trail to recovery………….

Struggling to stay alive………

I arrived to work earlier than usual just to get a head start on getting inside. Although the parking area was not too far from the front double doors of the Elementary School the distance felt as though it were a world away.

I got out of my car and paced myself very slowly towards the exit gate, and from there I found myself struggling to hold tight to the metal fence as I walked down the street. Once I got halfway down I stopped struggling to get a hold of my breath.

With each step I took my breath became even shorter and shorter. Finally I was able to turn the corner which meant that now I was even closer to the steps and those giant red  double doors.

Although my health was not good I became even more aware of my surroundings. The car coming from up the street, the birds that were flying overhead, the sound of the children on the playground playing, and the very sound of my breath breathing deep.

I was dedicated on showing up to work knowing that at home I had a son to take care of. Being a single mom is not an easy job yet at the end of the day he’s well taken care of and provided for. This is what mattered to me, and this is what helped me to push myself to show up and do my job.

The day went on as the students laughed, played, made jokes, and approached me for help. Even though I did not have the energy and I felt as though I was barely there I was getting the job done.

At some point my supervisor approached me wanting to know how I was doing, yet it became obvious to her that it was not too good. Perhaps I had some sort of cold and needed some energy, so she went and got me a club soda giving me a brief burst of energy.

A bit later I was not doing any better, so I left work early and got my mom to accompany me to the doctor’s office. Thank God I have a mom who supports and loves me so much that she never hesitates when needed.

As I saw my doctor the news was not good you see my glucose level was over 600 in fact the meter would not even read it. My doctor allowed me to leave under the conditions that (1) I was not the driver and (2) I went to the emergency room right away, and made absolutely no detours…………………..

A Teacher who really strives…..

A few days ago I wrote about my son dealing with some issues at school, and having to change his classroom. Although it has only been a few days as a parent I can see a huge difference, and I trust that my son is in good hands.

Going into the first week this new teacher has already put forth such a huge effort in making sure that my son is on the right track. When it comes to school my son got off to a late start, because of my struggles as a single parent. Although I worked for the school district financially I could not afford the $700 dollar monthly tab for him to be in school.

Can you believe it the district that I loved and worked for was charging me to put my son in daycare. As a result my son was not exposed to early childhood learning in an actual school based environment.

I am sure I will get a lot of raised eyebrows and turned heads for this, however as a single mom I worked three jobs to keep the bills paid and a roof over our heads. This was not an easy task because my mom had to personally step up and help out with taking care of my son while she was working the field of ministry herself.

When I was finally able to get my son into Kinder the struggle really became real. I was that parent that found myself running around the car in efforts to catch my running son whom had no intentions of being at school. On the days that I was successful in getting him to stay in class ironically he somehow fell ill and needed to be picked up early. The truth was that my son just was not ready for school.

Now that he has been placed in a new class with a teacher who obviously has perfected the craft of being a very good, take charge, innovative, and hard working teacher. I can see and tell that my son is going to thrive in her class.

Sometimes the truth hurts so when she pulled me aside and told me that we have take him back to the basics with his reading, alphabets, and phonics. I was not shocked a bit hurt because no parent wants their child to struggle, however the important thing is that you identify the struggle, address it, and find a solution to take care of it.

I am confident that she has not only helped to identify, yet she has also given me the tools to work with him at home while she works with him in class. This is the kind of teacher that everyone should want their child to have. A teacher who cares and really does strive for her students to learn, and do their best in learning.

Anti Bully Program Needed

Today I found myself at my sons school, yet I thank God that the principle and office staff did a great job. Since this school year has begun I encouraged my son to be nice to a student who has displayed behavioral problems. As time went on  tables turned and my son began to have problems from items coming up missing, being talked about called names, and being bullied.

 

Eventually I began to tell my son that perhaps the best thing for this student would be prayer, however I then found myself encouraging him to stay away from him. I know that kids will be kids and that as a parent I have to just trust that my son will learn to make the right choices and decisions.

 

As time continued to pass my son tried his best to stay away from this student, yet the bullying continued as this student began to become persistent in mistreating my son. The bullying began to turn physical where my son was having to deal with having his back jumped on etc. all at the hands of this student. It was decided that one of the solutions was to change my sons class room so that he would not be in the same class as the other student.I had finally had enough I mean no parent wants to know that their child is being bullied at school. Giving the media and the way the world is going our children are suffering so much and sometimes events turn tragic.

 

I realized that my son school takes a week and promotes Anti Bullying, however I now ask myself what more can be done. For the student who feels all alone walking in the hallway or into class with the feeling of being ridiculed and bullied. More has to be done for the student who gets talked about for something so little such as the clothes or shoes they ware. The student who sits alone at lunch time or never gets a recess because no one will play with them.

 

How is it that we have come to a time where this is taking place, and what contributes to this. As a mother I try very hard to teach my son core principles, to treat people the way you want to be treated, to become friends with the student that no one wants to be around simply because they do not have or for some strange reason they do not fit in.

 

I recall growing up and what my childhood was like. I remember being on the playground interacting with other students my age and how innocent those days were. our mindset was far from talking about one another, trying to make each other feel bad, or judge someone because of what they have or do not have.

 

Then I recall going into the ninth grade in the inner city, and although I only did one year before my mom shipped me off to my grandmothers in a much better community. I too was bullied, talked about, picked on, and even suffered being bullied because I chose not to hang out with the wrong crowed.

 

There has to be something that we can do besides a week long dedication to Anti Bullying. Students need to be more educated on how it can alter or change someones life for the worse. If we can spend a lot of time on phones, computers, cars and luxury items, then I am certain that we can take time (which cost nothing) to spend time with our kids and really talk to them about their behavior and how they treat others.