Handling Lows and Highs

Let me tell you about my week.

My week had some bad, and good, parts.

I found out that noncompaction cardiomyopathy, a rare genetic condition, runs in my family, and that my heart’s walls are thick in the same areas as affected family members. Though my walls are thicker than average in some areas, my heart is completely healthy. Cardiologist, who lectures on the condition, said, “You may always be healthy. You may not. We don’t know.” He advised me to eat a diet full of fruits & veggies (I do) and to get 30 minutes of cardio a day (I go to the gym and do cardio and weights 3 times a week, and I ice skate now for 30-60 minutes two or three times a week. I told him that but then I think he forgot, because later he launched into his standard spiel). I will write a whole post on this later, but for now, let me just tell you that I have to get my children all screened via echocardiogram, and get one myself every year. Oh, also, if I faint or start experiencing fatigue, I’m to come back in. I’m hoping Cadillac’s strong heart and long-lived ancestors will help out my kids’ genetics (both sides of his family live into their late 90s, barring other diseases, like cancers brought on by smoking).

My editor left the publisher to go to a job she couldn’t turn down. Good for her, wah for me. I’m in good hands still, but I really liked working with my editor and will miss her.

I went to the endocrinologist and found out she’s not concerned about my enlarging thyroid. She thinks it’s not really bigger, it’s a human error due to machine and tech differences. However, she did point out that my blood sugar is a wee bit high, and told me I’m prediabetic. Personally I think the diagnosis is premature, and will talk to my primary doc on Monday in more detail and to get a test that will take the average blood sugar over three months, not just one time. Endocrinologist instructed me to go to a nutrition class. However, I already know about diabetic nutrition; my dad’s prediabetic (guess blood sugar abnormalities run in the family, as well as bad hearts!) and my husband’s grandnephew has Type 1 diabetes. I know you’re to avoid white flour, eat whole grains in limited amounts, and basically not eat any junk. It’s, of course, stricter for those with diabetes or with higher blood sugar. I eat well about 90% of the time. I guess I’ll have to make it 98% of the time. Change from “live to eat” to “eat to live.”

Here are the better parts of my week:

I did a fabulous event at Warwick’s books in La Jolla, well-attended and fun to boot, where we talked about the publishing industry.

I got these magazines in the mail(LA JOLLA, RANCHO SAN DIEGO, DEL MAR, and SOLANA BEACH ABOUT TOWNs), with a feature story about me and my books:



My youngest got two consecutive 100%s on her spelling tests, after a month of struggling (she’d always forget a letter, or capitalize something). I had a fun time at a Mom’s Night In, knitting. I’m taking a figure skating class and getting slowly better. My husband just got me a really good sandwich (full of veggies). My editor’s assistant scared up an advance copy of the new Harkness book, SHADOW OF NIGHT (sequel to A DISCOVERY OF WITCHES) and sent it to me.

As I’ve gotten older, I’ve learned how to concentrate more on the positive aspects of life and appreciate what I do have. In the past, learning about my heart and prediabetes and my editor all at once would have devastated me for weeks. Now, though I do experience moments of sadness, I’m still appreciating how my spindly new rose is putting on leaves, how my daughter wrote a great short story, how good organic strawberries taste compared to regular. I call that progress.

Published by Margaret Dilloway

Middle grade and women's fiction novelist. FIVE THINGS ABOUT AVA ANDREWS, (Balzer + Bray 2020); SUMMER OF A THOUSAND PIES. MOMOTARO: Xander and the Lost Island of Monsters (Disney Hyperion); TALE OF THE WARRIOR GEISHA and SISTERS OF HEART AND SNOW, out now from Putnam Books. HOW TO BE AN AMERICAN HOUSEWIFE was a finalist for the John Gardner fiction award. THE CARE AND HANDLING OF ROSES WITH THORNS is the 2013 Literary Tastes Best Women's Fiction Pick for the American Library Association. Mother of three children, wife to one, slave to a cat, and caretaker of the best overgrown teddy bear on Earth, Gatsby the Goldendoodle.

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