Crying in the Dressing Room

Something happened today.  I spent ten minutes crying in the dressing room at Kohls. 

Dear Journal, 

It has been awhile, much too long actually, since I took the time to write.  I had intended on writing more than I have. I’d say I’ll write more from here on out, but that might just be an empty promise.  I’ve been so busy, but aren’t we all? dressing room

Something happened today.  I spent ten minutes crying in the dressing room at Kohls.  It was because many of the things I grabbed didn’t fit.  This experience of nothing fitting wasn’t new, but something about this WAS different: things didn’t fit because they were too BIG.

As you may recall, I had the life changing opportunity to have roux-en-y gastric bypass.  When I last wrote in January, I was a month out from my surgery date. I had my surgery on February 20.  I’ve had no complications.  My first few weeks after surgery I regretted everything about it.  I was sore, I couldn’t eat like I wanted to, and I craved all the good foods.  However, one day everything clicked, and I started feeling great.  I think it started with a positive mind.  Sure, I can’t have anything sweet like cake or cookies, and I haven’t had a Diet Mountain Dew or a Monster in over three months. But, giving those things up is so worth it.  I don’t even miss them now.

So, back to the crying in the dressing room.  I wasn’t just crying tears of joy because I lost seventy pounds already, and the XL shirts I grabbed were too large now. No, I was crying because my diabetes was in remission.  My hormones were more balanced than ever before.  I might not have the same struggles with infertility that I’ve struggled with for the past two years.  My joints hurt less.  My depression and anxiety are better.  Emotionally, I am more confident.  This new found confidence has made me a better wife.  A better employee.  A better person.

I worked hard at loving myself each and every day.  Each and every pound.  Whether I was at my highest weight of 252 or my current weight now of 179.  (I’m 5’8″ for perspective.)  I had this surgery because I love me.  I know we live in a world of body positivity and sure, I loved myself and who I was, but my extra weight was a trigger for my depression. I knew and recognized that about myself.  I started to lose myself and not care about anything.  My shopping addiction got worse because I compensated for my emotional sadness by trying to collect things. Things to make me happy and things to make me forget how empty I sometimes felt inside.  Things I didn’t need.  This surgery was not only a saving grace for my physical health, but my mental health (and my wallet).

My journey isn’t over.  My journey is just beginning.  Each day I learn new things about myself.  I’ve found out that my new love is exercise not food or shopping, and my favorite sweet eat is now raspberries not cake or cookies.  I’ve learned to recognize things that make me anxious and then breathe not eat.  I’ve paid off every last credit card from those shopping sprees and collecting things to compensate for my sadness.  My life is starting over, and I’m so thankful for modern medicine, insurance, and perseverance.

I’m glad I didn’t talk myself out of this surgery.  If you’re reading this because you are debating what to do, whether it is surgery or something else: do what your heart tells you.  Try to picture your life if you do it or if you don’t.  Dream your best dream. Then do it.

Love,

-s

Fat clothes.

Dear Journal, 

It was something actually didn’t think would make a difference to me, but it did.  I wallowed all day so far in self pity because of it.  Today, I bought clothes second-hand from someone obesitywho for most of my life I referenced as fat.  (Now, I know that in today’s world of body positivity that’s a taboo word to use.  But, I’m not talking about calling her fat to her face; it is the voice in my head that recognizes different hair colors, eye colors, and other descriptors.  Let’s face it, we know when someone is a little fluffy.  Would I treat someone different because of that? No.  So you get my point)  Now, I was able to buy these clothes from her because since January she’s lost fifty pounds.  THAT is amazing.  I am so proud of her.  But, for me it put things into perspective a bit.  That person, who for much of my adult life I regarded as fat, was now much smaller than me, and her “fat clothes” were the perfect size for me.

It caused me to reflect on how I got here.  I’m good at playing the victim to my health, and even doctors tell me I have the cards stacked against me.  I’ve been told that even if I ran a marathon a day and ate perfectly balanced meals I still would have a hard time losing weight.  I have a wonderful combination of PCOS, endometriosis, hypothyroidism, diabetes, and an enzyme issue in my stomach.  All of these things led to depression and anxiety.  I’m in the process of working with an amazing team of doctors at Mayo Clinic – Rochester to decide if maybe I have gotten some incorrect diagnosis in the past that got me to this point.  We are looking into autoimmune issues and more.  I finally feel like I am in the best of care to get down to the bottom of whatever I have going on and gain back the remaining years of my 20s and better health for my future.  But, I have a “food problem” and with all this said, I am not innocent in my decline in health and addition of weight.  I love potato chips, and I love chocolate chip cookies. I occasionally binge on them when I’m stressed, having a really bad round with depression, or just because they taste good.

With all that said, I know I need to start making better decisions and I need to be realistic about my problems.  I can’t play the victim. I need to get over my “victim of by body” mindset especially as I look upon having gastric bypass.  My consult for that is coming up at the end of May, and to say I am nervous is an understatement. I also just can’t believe that this is where I am.  I never thought that I would be a candidate for a surgery like this and sitting here weighing out the pros and cons of a life changing surgery like this.  In my mind I go back and forth, back and forth.  It’s such a tough decision to make whether to proceed or not, but I can’t help but thinking it is a good choice to make.  I’ve failed on dozens of normal diets, worked my butt off, and spent thousands on “health trends”. When nothing changes after all of that, and you keep losing and gaining the same ten pounds, it’s easy to feel defeated.  Here’s to hoping this could be a positive change after some tears and pain.

Has anyone overcome binge eating tendencies?  Has anyone personally weighed out the pros and cons of weight loss surgery?  Share your thoughts below. 

-S

 

 

 

The Journey Begins

Thanks for joining me!  I’m looking forward to sharing my life with you. My life was always pretty great until the struggles of mental health, weight gain, and fertility issues started coming to the surface. Rather than write all my ramblings in a book, I chose to expose them to the world so that maybe someone can relate, laugh, or realize they aren’t alone, no matter how dark things can be. I’ll cover the nitty-gritty, relationship issues, friendship issues, OCD, social anxiety, and more.  I aim for this to be honest and relate-able. I’ll try to publish often.  Want to know something more? Ask me! I’ll respond or write a post about it!

“Journaling is like whispering to one’s self and listening at the same time.” — Mina Murray