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    Posted November 9, 2012 by
    lilpyrogirl
    Location
    Alpharetta, Georgia
    Assignment
    Assignment
    This iReport is part of an assignment:
    CNN Fit Nation: 2013 Triathlon Challenge

    Help me end my war with my body

     
    I know war is a strong term, but to say I've had some medical challenges is a huge understatement. About 8 years ago, I had to have the entire left lobe of my liver removed. In 2008, I was diagnosed with Thyroid cancer and had a complete thyroidectomy. I also ended up in the hospital that same year with the most stubborn case of pneumonia ever. I spent 8 weeks in the hospital and several more at home recovering. In addition, I have a rare condition called Sphincter of Oddi Dysfunction and struggled for years with pain and digestive problems. Every doctor kept telling me that nothing was wrong. One doctor even told me it was in my head and I'd be fine if I just started taking anti-depression medication. I started to fear that doctor's thought I was making it up so I tried to hide it as long as I could and just dealt with the pain and the constant nausea and diarrhea. When it was finally diagnosed, I had 5 procedures to open up the common bile duct but after a period of time the symptoms would return and every time I had another ERCP, the doctor would report that the muscle had re-stenosed. Since the last ERCP was only partially successful, I underwent a big surgery to fix it only a month ago on October 10th. I had a transdeuodenal sphincteroplasty and during surgery they found that I actually have a secondary pancreatic duct that was undersized and were able to open it up as well. The doctor's think that this second duct might have also been contributing to my chronic pancreatitis symptoms. We're only a month out from surgery but I'm elated to report that it appears so far to have been successful. I can eat normal food without immediately getting sick on my stomach again. And I'm still healing but for the most part, I'm pain-free. Given all these medical issues (and I haven't given you the entire list - just the highlights), I feel like I'm constantly waiting for the other shoe to drop. I am completely terrified of what the next problem might be. I have to do something drastic so I can be comfortable in my body again. I really believe that if I can take control of my fitness, I can feel more empowered instead of just a victim of my own body. I don't want to be at war with my body anymore.

    I've actually wanted to do a tri for a few years but the SOD was making me so sick on my stomach that I couldn't do it. But I can now and I really want to. I just have no idea where to start. I don't even own a bicycle. I know how to swim and before my last flare up of SOD, I had started working on jogging but could still only jog a couple minutes at a time.

    I was really inspired by Jeff from the Bert Show on the 2012 Fit Nation team. I listen to the Bert Show every day and I know my reasons are completely different from Jeff's but his story has given me the confidence to believe that I really can do this. I really want to do this. And I really want to feel at peace in my own body again. I desperately need to take control of my fitness so I can feel empowered instead of victimized. Please choose me.

    April Musser
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