I’ve been trying to lose weight pretty much all of my adult life. I’d try, then fail. Try. Then fail. And while most people would insist that I not use the word “fail,” given my current status on the scale, there really isn’t any other way to describe it.
And sure…as Thomas Edison said:
So, in all these years of failure, what have I learned?
- weight-loss gimmicks don’t work
- there is no easy way to weightloss
- “I’ll start Monday” is never a good thing, especially if it’s Tuesday
- you have to be willing to make sacrifices
And sometimes…sometimes you need more help in order to succeed.
If you’re like me, you hate asking for help. You don’t want to be a burden to others. You feel that you should be able to do something on your own – if only you keep trying. I thought that way for a long time. That hard work, perseverance, sheer determination and a strong will was all someone needed.
And for some people, that’s true. But for those of us who no matter how much we want something, we invariably “fail” for one reason or another. I was severely lacking most of that, but I could never explain why.
I’ve had some people tell me that I didn’t want to lose weight. I’ve had others tell me that if I really wanted it badly enough, I’d “just do it.” And still, I’ve had others tell me that it “wasn’t meant to be.”
But I’ve never liked being obese.
I’ve never liked the limited “freedom” that being obese caused. Needing a seat-belt extender on airplanes (and god-forbid you need to use the lavatory) and in a car. Squeezing into public seating in movie theatres and sporting arenas, or on a plane or bus. The wonder if when you sit on a chair whether it will hold your weight. The stares of strangers whose looks make you want to crawl under a rock because you feel so ugly. The abhorrence to having your picture taken, or seeing your reflection in a mirror or reflective glass of a building or an elevator. Or even the constant need to keep track of which places had bathrooms in which you could comfortably fit.
Whatever the philosophy might be, the end result is that despite all of this, it never was enough of a sustaining motivator to me to lose the weight and keep it off. And to be honest, that is probably my greatest shame.
But it’s a new time now. I’ve decided I need help. And I’m asking. By deciding to have the bariatric surgery, I’m asking for help. I need help.
I don’t see this as a cure-all. I never have. And while I’ve never considered weight-loss surgery as the “easy way,” I did fight the idea because I believed that it wasn’t going to be that cure-all that many of us so desperately want. It took some time for me to fully understand that the surgery was just a stepping stone on the journey.
My 3,278th, if you will. I don’t know if that’s really what step I’m on, but it’s as good a number as any.
The steps leading to the surgery will not be easy, but they won’t be necessarily difficult either. I’ve already begun preparing so that the adjustment isn’t as difficult as it could be. The surgery itself can be difficult. There are risks, certainly. There always are in major surgery, but if there is ever a time for me to be positive – it’s now.
The post-surgery will have the greatest challenges. Drastic reduction in food intake. Limited ability to eat certain foods; complete avoidance of others. Again, I’ve already started to make the transition on some of this.
For me to succeed, I am going to have to work hard. I know this. And for the first time in a long time, I feel like I can work hard. I can do this.
And while I certainly wish I had made this decision years ago, I feel like I really needed to be in that place; to really believe it was the right time.
And that time is now.
My biggest fear with this entire process, besides the risks of death, are really – with the assumption of success in losing all the weight I want – is the inevitability of loose skin. And I will have a lot of it. As I’m not a spring chicken anymore, no amount of pleaded of my skin to bounce back is going to help. And in many places on my body, the skin has been stretched far too far anyway. And based on everything I’ve read of others who have gotten that far, the skin reduction surgery is actually worse to deal with than the bariatric surgery.
And I will deal with that step when I get to it.
First, I have to make it to the 3,279th.
Blessings to all.
PS: As of this morning I am down 40 pounds since last Fall. Yay me!