Oh goodness, my little Double Chin Diary. I think about you often, how I want to write, how I want to hang out and tweak your logos and colors and design, but then, a baby cries or a toddler whines or a cat pukes on the carpet — and suddenly the reality of the real world thrusts a bunch of other stuff onto my to-do list. Speaking of that to-do list, I’ve been “doing” for the past several months, having attended a class each month in preparation for my upcoming weight loss surgery! Woohoo! My insurance requires six months of “medically supervised nutrition courses”, so once a month, I go to the hospital where I will be poked open, and hear about what my life will entail pre-op, post-op and then some. I’ve actually really enjoyed the program because I’m surrounded by lots of like-minded people, and my nerdy planner-loving self gets to know what I can expect once my tummy is reduced in size.
The exciting news is that May is my last class! On June 1, I meet with the RD for a final appointment, and then, I will be submitted for final insurance approval, and assuming all is well, I’ll hopefully have a surgery date within the month of June. I was thinking about the adjustments I’ll need to make in life, and then pondering how many of us live our lives through a certain lens. For example, even if I lost all my excess weight, I think I’ll always live life through the lens of a heavy person. It’s going to be bizarre and wonderful to finally see efforts pay off; I’m so excited to think that for the first time in my life a “diet” will actually work for me. I’m oddly very excited to begin this process and get back to feeling like me, the me without the fat suit. I decided I’d answer a couple of the same questions that keep coming up, as I know I’ll want to refer to my thoughts on the surgery a few months after I’m actually post-op.
- Are you nervous?
Of course, but maybe not as much as I should be? I think any surgery is risky, but the procedure itself is laproscopic, and a pretty simple procedure overall. I’ve been told I’ll be up and walking within an hour of awakening to help work out the gas used in the surgery, so I’m hoping recovery isn’t too intense. I have a pretty good pain tolerance and birthed two babies, so the actual procedure itself doesn’t worry me, it’s more just the thought of drastically changing the way I eat. (Which in itself is a good thing, and a learning opportunity I need to have.)
- How long will you stay in the hospital?
Assuming I have no complications, it will be overnight. (Since I’m a new parent, I think it’s funny and sad at the same time that I’m looking forward to a night of sleep with no wakeups from baby or toddler!)
- What will your diet be like after?
Small, and for the first several weeks, liquids and soft foods while my tummy heals. At the beginning, I’m told to expect to be able to eat only about two ounces at a time.
- How much weight do you have to lose?
My surgeon and I have agreed 100 pounds will be great, 120 would be awesome, and 150 would be bananas.
- Will you have to exercise?
Yes. The sleeve surgery isn’t magic, but it’s a super helpful tool. I actually like exercise once I get into the groove, so I’m hoping I can get back to feeling good and get back to boxing and yoga and of course, training for the 3-Day.
- What are you most nervous about?
I think my fear is that I’ll regret having it. My worst case scenario in my mind is that it causes some irreversible health problem and I’m left regretting that I didn’t just stay fat. Hopefully this does not happen!
- Do you have any rewards set for hitting certain goals?
Yes! Horseback riding, going to Costa Rica and ziplining, going to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, etc. I want to do some things that I maybe was too heavy for in the past.
- Are you sure you want to do something so drastic? Yup. “But, my cousin tried this new diet called…” NOPE.
I think one great thing about modern medicine is we usually get to choose how we treat ourselves and our ailments. I’ve spent a long time thinking about this and have researched the hell out of it, so I’m extremely confident in my decision to move forward. I need the help of a tool to help me get out of my weight loss hole – and there’s no shame in my game. Rock on 🙂
- Why can’t you just be happy with yourself the way you are?
I think that some people are 100% able to live their best lives at the size they are. I’ve been fortunate to live a life I’ve loved, whether it be at 180 pounds or 280 pounds. Has it always been easy? No. But I’ve traveled, I’ve had kids, I’ve worked an awesome career, and very seldom did size get in my way. But, sometimes, it did. And I want to feel like my best self and my best me, and I can’t live my best life with the sobering reality of the health risks of obesity lingering over me. So onwards, and upwards, and loving myself through it, and hoping you love yourself, too. (And if you don’t? Get on it. Life is too damn short for that crap.)
- What will you do when things get hard?
The same things I always do. Seek help, talk to knowledgeable friends who won’t judge me, go to therapy if I need to, work closely with doctors, be grateful, be persistent. I’m lucky to have several friends who have had the sleeve, and they’re graciously an open book to me and my million questions.
So that’s that! I can’t wait to update y’all in a little bit with some official “before” surgery photos. I hope you’re doing wonderful out there, and wish me luck in these next few weeks as I tackle my two-week liquid diet before surgery, and do all the blood work, etc. I always appreciate you cheering me on!