thirty-somethings

life in all its glory

Milestones (part two)

It’s been a while since I’ve posted an update on my post-bariatric surgery life. It has been quite a journey for me. A wonderfully positive journey for me! I had my six month post-op appointment this past week. My doctor said I’m doing really well! My labs all came out good! Except for one, that we’ll be monitoring. But for the most part, everything is great!! Having this surgery is the best decision I’ve ever made.

My doctor said that people who have this surgery typically lose a total 50%-70% of their excess weight. I’m already at 64% at the six-month mark. Per my doc, that’s a great sign. I’ve lost a total of 65 lbs.

About a month or so ago, I went shopping for the first time. It was quite an experience. Started out terribly but ended wonderfully! At that point I had lost around 60ish lbs. Mind you, I had only really shopped in one store – Torrid (plus size).  I was not sure what size I was – I knew I likely was not plus size anymore. I just didn’t know where to start. I decided I would go to Forever 21. Terrible idea. Bright lights, huge store, loud music – I had no idea where to start. I was so overwhelmed. I almost had a panic attack. I lasted maybe five minutes and had to leave. Walked into H&M right next door. Another terrible idea. It was another reoccurrence of forever 21.

I talked to a couple of my girlfriends because I legit had no idea where to start. Through conversation, I decided I was going to go to express. A few days later, I go. I was greeted by a wonderful employee, asking if I needed help. I explained to her that I had recently lost a lot of weight and had no idea where to start but I desperately needed some new clothes. SHE WAS SO KIND! Not only did she walk throughout the store with me, picking outfits, but she also helped me figure out that I still picture myself as much larger than I really am. I needed a reality check.

It’s a funny story, she asked me what size I was maybe thinking I was. I said 12 – assuming I was the largest of the “regular sizes.” She looked at me, said I looked like a 10. I jokingly told her she’s crazy. She convinced me. Same thing with the shirts. I told her I thought I was a large, she told me, I’m a medium. Again I told her she’s crazy. But at the end, she convinced me. I tried them on…and THEY FIT. I quietly cried in the fitting room when everything fit. I’ve gone down about four sizes. Before the surgery, I was a 2XL (honestly, borderline 3XL). I mean, holy shit! That’s a whole lot of sizes.

I’m trying to get used to this new body I’m in. I feel so much more comfortable in my skin. My health has improved exponentially. I sleep better, I’m no longer in danger of becoming diabetic. I’m getting closer to getting off my blood pressure medicine. My weight loss has slowed down but that’s normal at this point in my recovery. All in all, everything is moving along swimmingly.

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Awkward questions (part 2) 

So, one of the biggest adjustments I’ve had to go through since having my surgery are the invasive questions. 

I’m at the point where there has been a drastic change physically. 50 lbs is a lot of weight. Naturally people will comment things like “wow! You look great! You’ve lost so much weight!!” I don’t have a problem with that. It feels GREAT getting compliments. I always say thank you and yes, I have lost weight. 9 out of 10 times the follow up question is: how did you do it?? 

Initially I always answered that I had weight loss surgery not realizing the barrage of questions that would follow. For example: how much weight have you lost? Where was your weight before starting? What’s your goal weight? Why did you decide to do it? Why didn’t you just eat right and exercise? 

Don’t get me wrong, I actually have no problem answering those questions when it comes to my own friends and family. Where I do have a problem is that these are random people I come into contact with at work. Nobody I have a real friendship with. Nobody that deserves to know all that information. 

My therapist and I have come up with an answer when they’ve asked how I’ve lost the weight: I’ve been watching what I eat. It’s enough to justify the weight loss. Enough to satisfy their curiosity without compromising my privacy.

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post-bariatric surgery life

The surgery happened and sometimes I can not believe that I went through with it. Even though I was totally prepared mentally, physically and emotionally to have the surgery…there was a part of me that felt that I might be change my mind last minute.

It happened. It has been a little over three weeks and I am SOOOOO happy I did. It has already changed my life in so many positive ways. There has been a huge adjustment, obviously. Food intake is clearly the first one. But there’s also the emotional side of it too. I got fat for multiple reasons but one major one is because I used food as a coping mechanism. Angry? Eat. Sad? Eat. Frustrated? Eat. Happy? Eat. I also quit smoking about a year and a half ago, so I don’t have that to cope either. I’m learning. It’s a work in progress.

As discussed in my previous post. This has been a long time coming. I had to take an extensive prep course before being approved for the surgery. Since starting the prep course and now having the surgery, I have lost a total of 43 pounds. That number blows my mind.  I have a loooooong way to go but at least I am on the right path. I haven’t been back to work since having my surgery. I go back on Monday. I’m excited and nervous but mostly excited! Then I feel like this new chapter of my life will really start.

That’s it for now. Stay tuned.

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