I am so excited right now that I had to share with you guys something really awesome: I’m getting a new pair of lungs! It’s time to toss out this old asthma-ridden pair and install a band new pair of lungs that will work just as good as any other pair. And the best part about this lung transplant is that it doesn’t involve cutting anything open or taking anything out or putting anything else into my body. So, you may be wondering, how in the world am I going to get new lungs? Well, after years of waiting for my doctor to give me the chance to go forward with this, I finally received the call. You see, my lungs are kind of broken. They don’t function well in cold weather. They don’t respond well to heavy exercise. The put up a huge fuss when I get sick. And they really don’t care for all this extra weight I’ve put on top of them, which is why I’m trying as hard as I can to change that. But there is one thing that is going to help me lose weight and get a pair of lungs that function a lot better than they do now. How? I’m starting pulmonary rehab. For those of you who have never heard of pulmonary rehab, it is a form of therapy designed to recondition and strengthen the pulmonary (lung) function of patients with severe lung conditions. And starting today, I am embarking on a journey to get these lungs working the way they’re supposed to!
The first time I was told about this program was a little over two years ago. I was sitting in my doctor’s office, again for the umpteenth time that month, asking the same questions that I had been asking since my diagnosis: why aren’t the meds working yet? what else can we try? why am I having so many asthma attacks? will I ever be normal again? And the questions that was burning most within me: I know I need to lose weight, but when will I be able to actually exercise the way I should in order to do that? The answers to these questions, at that point, were always uncertain, which was extremely frustrating. When I asked how I could exercise safely and effectively, my doctor told me that I wouldn’t be able to exercise until I was strong enough to go through pulmonary rehab. Finally, a ray of hope! There was only one problem: I didn’t want to wait around and do nothing until my lungs were strong enough, because we had no idea how long it would take for me to get there. So I did what everyone said I couldn’t do and I started working out. Now, I’m not saying I jumped right into long distance running or anything, but I had had enough and I wasn’t going to sit around doing nothing when I knew I had to make a change. Now that I’ve lost a significant amount of weight and my meds are under control, my asthma has improved enough to start pulmonary rehab. It’s time to get me some new lungs!
I know this will not be easy. In fact I’m hoping that it will be hard. I am sick and tired of living in a body that is sick and tired! I’ve worked so hard to get to where I am now, and I am ready to work even harder. I will be going into rehab two times each week, and I plan on making every minute count. The one thing I see myself struggling with in this program is patience. I don’t have a whole lot of patience, especially when it comes to my health. I have a tendency to want to jump right into exercising the second I start to feel good, and I’ve had to learn more than once that patience is key when building up strength. So with that in mind, I am going into this program knowing that I won’t turn into a marathon runner after the first week (even though that would be kind of awesome). But even if it takes me months or even years (hopefully months), just having that chance to strengthen my lungs and get to a place physically that is better than where I am today is well worth the effort. That’s all that really matters, right? Not aiming for perfection, but aiming to progress and becoming stronger and better versions of ourselves.