Beer Fast

beer

This past Friday I officially ended my 4-month beer fast. Well…it was also 4 months of a very strict diet with added exercise.

In June, I began feeling really off. I had extreme fatigue where any amount of physical energy I put out left me feeling exhausted. Getting to work was a lot of effort. I was winded, had heart palpitations and was dizzy much of the time. I thought I was going crazy. So I saw a doctor. I had the blood work and after a review with my own doctor, she was as perplexed as I was. The blood work did reveal one thing that I needed to take immediate action on, however. I was prediabetic. What the hell? That still didn’t explain what was happening to me but, ok, let’s fix this.

My doctor’s best course of action was to send me for an electrocardiogram (EKG) and to a cardiologist. But not before telling me to cut out caffeine entirely. Shocking but necessary, I agreed. I would go cold turkey. Bad idea. I nearly died the next day and I had to wean off the stuff over the next week. Brutal!

At my doctor’s recommendation, my employer made the possible for me to work from home. For the first week, mostly coffeeless and still feeling so alien in my body, I was able to get some work done. I tried to rest more and cut out everything that was bad for me: sugar, alcohol, carbs – that part was easy! The hard part was coping with the stress of What the fuck is happening to me?!

As the weeks went by, my symptoms began to improve. The exhaustion wasn’t as severe, the waves of dizziness slowly petered off but the stress of the whole ordeal had manifested itself in physical pain by this point, which was pretty good indicator that I was dying. I wasn’t obviously but oh, the places your mind will go.

When I finally saw my doctor for a followup, I was feeling much better by this point and both she and I felt I could get back to work. And I did. Before I left her office, she basically shrugged her shoulders and said, “Perhaps it was just a bug?”. Apparently, medical science can’t always explain some things.

It’s been 3 months since then and I’ve had some checkpoints along the way. EKGs, more blood work and followups with the cardiologist and finally my doctor. All reports were positive and after losing 2o-ish lbs, I’m happy to report that I’m no longer prediabetic and was able to cut my already good cholesterol in half!

A few weeks ago, I celebrated my 36th birthday in typical Melinda fashion: Low key and with a breakfast of coffee and (sugar free, low carb) cake. I feel better than I have in some time and there’s no looking back. I’m still young enough to be able to slow down the aging process if I continue to work at it.

I had my celebratory beer last night and you know what? It was alright but I’m content without it. Which is surprising since that’s all I talked about during my 4-month beer fast.

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I’ve been chronicling the whole stupid ordeal in a series of humorous
illustrations. I hope to reveal this series by June 2017. 

One Tough Mutha

 

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I guess this place looks a little empty, eh? *tumbleweed blows by*

Winter seems so far away, yet we’re still cowering from Mother Nature’s 2015 wrath.

Speaking of mothers, I thought I’d post this doodle I did of my Mom for Mother’s Day. It illustrates her determination and stubbornness.

She went through a lot of hurdles with her health over the past year after breaking her hip and she is still as determined as ever to kick the shit out of each and every day. Determined and stubborn. Each ‘get up and go’ has its set backs and I’ve leaned that no matter my age or what I know is best for her, she is just going to go ahead and do whatever the hell she wants to do.

Some people who break their hip will just lay down and die. And then there’s my Mutha.

 

 

A Dear John Letter to Winter

die-winter

 

Like I’ve said before, I hate to be “that person” but really, if I can’t draw a simple picture of me taking out my winter frustrations on snowflakes by way of a flame thrower, then what good is this life?

 

Artist Appreciation: Duane Bryers

Hilda

There are so many artists whose work I adore. One of those artists is Duane Bryers. Specifically his Hilda series.

I discovered Hilda a few years ago and each time I come across images of her, I just can’t help but smile. As far as characters go, Hilda is fantastic. She has a generous figure and she’s ok with that. She’s a little clumsy and just plain adorable.

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Link: America’s Forgotten Pin-Up Girl

 

Kristen Schaal

schallKristen Schaal. Is there anything she can’t do? I believe she comes from a planet of Kristen Schaals—all of whom she has vaporized with her ray gun…because she is Kristen Schaal.