This is a letter to my formerly fat self…just before surgery.
Dear Bariatric Girl (2001),
I know you’ve tried it all….
every diet on earth…
lost and gained hundreds and hundreds and hundreds…
did I say hundreds??
You’re about to get an opportunity to finally succeed. (I’m not kidding)
Don’t be afraid, I know you think you’ll fail just like EVERY SINGLE TIME BEFORE! This time it’s going to work. Be prepared for weird stuff from friends and even family. Some friends will go away because you no longer are the holder of the “fattest friend trophy”. Believe me, when you give that trophy to someone else, they will do all kinds of stuff to stop you.
It’s a fact. You were always the holder of the trophy but you aren’t anymore and believe me, no one else wants it.
So after you give that trophy away, things are going to move fast. People will talk to you that never saw you before. Make sure and appreciate it. Don’t go to the dark side and resent the fact that you weren’t spoken to while fat. You are part of the reason that happened anyway because you felt so bad about yourself and you were sure no one wanted to talk to you.
Respect and nurture your surgery. Follow the rules.
Doesn’t that seem like a no brainer? I can’t tell you how many stories I’ve heard about people that just decide they don’t need to take their vitamins. Things like failing kidneys and teeth falling out do not compliment your newly thin body. I’m not trying to scare you, it’s important and it’s a simple thing to do every day. No matter how good you feel, do NOT stop taking your vitamins.
That’s a pretty simple trade for not being obese.
Vitamins? or Obesity?
Never forget where you came from.
Take those pictures and do whatever it takes for you to never forget how you felt the day before surgery. Understand that you will be making a lifestyle change because your lifestyle was the reason you got yourself in that spot. Granted, it started many years ago but gradually you got yourself in big trouble with food and it became your friend ….
and your enemy…..
Understand that it is easy to keep chasing the high (another post will be dedicated to that). You’re giving up the “high” of food. In exchange, the first year you will get the “high” from losing weight and it’s gonna be GREAT! When the honeymoon period is over, you better be prepared for finding something to help deal with your anxiety. Using food isn’t allowed anymore so I suggest you find something to take your mind off the “high”. It is an easy thing to slide right into shopping or sexual addiction because you are smaller for the first time in ages and those new clothes and how you look in them can be intoxicating.
Talking about intoxicating…
You might feel more like being social and doing some partying so be careful on the alcohol consumption. It’s not good on a number of levels but again…if you haven’t dealt with your need for your “highs” and how you handle anxiety, you could get in trouble. I suggest that as you lose your weight that you get involved in support of some kind so that people can hold you accountable in case you start to get out of hand.
Also know that people will think you took the easy way out and that you didn’t do it the old fashioned way. That’s OK…it doesn’t matter. None of it matters…just do your thing. The reality of it all is that you can only control what you do…you cannot do a thing about anybody else. Well one thing you can do is avoid the people that keep bringing negative crap into your life. Haven’t you had enough?
Just show them by example that you are saving your life and go ahead and enjoy it!
The great news…
you’re gonna do it this time!
As I like to say very often, I’ve caged the monster of obesity but I have to check the lock on the cage every single day.
So…note to self….you’re about to have a life you could have never imagined and I’ll check back with you and write another letter at the ten year mark. All I can say is that the first seven have been phenomenal!
Congrats and enjoy…
Have a good time but keep checking that lock on that cage.
I can’t believe you did it this time….oh…and keep working on that loving yourself stuff. Damn, that part is SO HARD!
Love and kisses,
Bariatric Girl 2008