It’s taken me a while to gather enough courage to publish this page. One of the hardest things about Cushing’s is the lack of control over your body. The only way I know how to describe it is this: feeling as if your body is possessed by something. No matter what you do, you cannot control it. At the time of my last trip to Europe, I was at the heaviest I’ve ever been. And probably at my most desperate. Nothing I did seemed to work. I just kept gaining weight, growing hair in gross places. Acne everywhere. Boils on my skin. I was so tired all of the time. And so, so, so depressed. And I went from my “normal” self to looking like that in just a year and a half. That’s how big of a nightmare this disease is.
I pondered this for a while and decided that the proof is indeed in the pudding. I needed to see the progress myself, complete with pictures of me at the worst, to reaffirm how far I’ve come. I’m sure that others coming to this site for more information and support also need to see that there is hope. That you can beat this disease and take hold of yourself again.
It’s hard for people around me to note my progress because they see me every day. So, here is the proof and extra reaffirmation to myself and others suffering from this wretched disease.
A big thank you goes to one of my very best friends in the entire world (literally), Kristina. Snart, love. Snart! ;)
Me at my “normal” weight when I’m not doing anything to either lose or gain…just simply existing; me at the height of my illness (and at my heaviest weight and most miserable); me four months post-pituitary surgery. The caption says 6 months but it’s closer to 4.5 months. I had my surgery on December 23, 2008, and this picture was taken on May 2, 2009.
Me at the height of my illness in September 2008. Horrid dull complexion, greasy hair (no matter how many times I’d wash it) and boils on my arms though you can’t see them in this picture. You can see how my eyes almost seem to be sinking into my face and also the hyperpigmentation on my jawline from all of the acne. The second picture is me 4.5 months post pituitary surgery. My complexion has cleared up and I no longer suffer from acne. And my hair is no longer greasy. Success!
At Heather’s request, I’ve added a picture of us before I got sick, without staying in the hospital for 12 hours with greasy, unwashed hair and no sleep. This was us only a few months before Cushing’s began hitting full force (May 2007). We were hot. ;)
Here I am, almost six months post surgery. My complexion is super clear, hardly any acne, and my skin is glowing again. Plus, my face is skinnier. Official weight loss at 6 months is 27 pounds!
So I’m a little behind in posting…but this is a picture of me with my father on Christmas 2009, a year to the date of my surgery. Big improvement! I’m very happy! Official weight loss is 35 pounds.
Update, May 2, 2013: I didn’t realize it’d been so long since I had posted pictures! Time to show some more progress!
This is a picture of me, dated January 2013. I have now had two pituitary surgeries, the second being the closest to successful. I’ve lost 50 pounds (I gained twenty back, and now I’m slowly carving that weight off), but I’m still not losing ALL the weight. I’m concerned that I am about to undergo another recurrence, especially given my recent MRI results. However, I do “look” like myself in this picture, and my skin is healthy. This is definite progress!
Surgery Pictures (First Surgery, December 2008):