Monday, August 21, 2006

Heartache

This from Obesity Help, the website which used to be for recovery from this affliction of obesity and compulsive eating through various means, but which has turned into a surgical forum:

"I am 3 years post open RNY tommorow as a matter of fact. I started at 267 lbs and lost down to 133. I weighed Tuesday, and I have gained 20 lbs. . . . My friends just don't understand. They say, well just quit eating. Well, if it were that simple, I wouldn't have had my gut cut open in the first place. "

"I did great the first year. Dropping 110 pounds I went from 349 pounds to 235. Somehow once I stalled , I couldn't keep going. I have gone back to eating sweets and junk. Eating large portions. I'm hungry all the time and feel out of control. I've already gained back up to 250 pounds. . . . I started out with a lap-band and converted to gastric bypass which got me down to 250 thank god but I can't budge.. I can eat too much and I don't know when to stop. I never had that feeling that everyone described of feeling full off of a little bit of food. . . . I feel helpless and out of control."

"Well last months I made 5 years post-op but I am seriously stressed out over gaining more weight... I went down from my starting weight of 330 lbs to 187 lbs but I have now gained back 53 lbs all together sense June 21, 2001...Due to a ton of stress, my old eating habits of food being my friend and comfort zone have returned. I don't know what to do anymore and I am wondering if anyone gained back a ton of weight and perhaps had the surgery done again?"

These stories break my heart. I know how hopeless it feels to be enormous and unable to control what goes in my mouth. I don't know how or what or which set of circumstances combines to create that window of opportunity for a lasting recovery. It's almost as if desire for a better life, willingness to put down the food, acceptance that it may be difficult, and being sick of the way things are have to come together in one moment with a little hope and a frosting of fear to provide the beginning. And I can and surely have disrupted that beginning by waiting until this meal is done or until tomorrow or until after vacation or or or or . . . .

Weight loss is no big secret and in every instance the suggestion to these desperate souls has been to "go back to basics." Writing down every morsel that goes into my mouth, exercising, drinking lots of water, getting problem foods out of the house. Whichever means we choose to attack this problem, the bottom line is that it's all the same: less input and more output = weight loss. There is no magic except the magic that happens in us to make us aware that the only day we have to start is today. Tomorrow never comes, it is this day, this minute, this very second in time that I will change my life or not.

Some crusty old men in AA used to tell me, when I was fretting about the future or agonizing over the past, "ya got one foot in tomorrow and one foot in yesterday, and you're just pissin' all over today, little girl." I have pissed away many, many todays thinking of what I'll do tomorrow. When I live fully present in this life, the moment I'm in instead of fretting about the future, I am given an amazing peace which inevitably leads to joy. This moment, today, I can eat right, exercise, drink water, make healthy food choices, get enough rest. These are the building blocks of a new life and I'm grateful to be well on the way in my own construction project. I very much hope that you are as well.

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8 Comments:

Blogger FatMom said...

What an awesome post, BAB! You've made me tear up, and ripped me from the self pity I've been consumed by...(let's hope THIS lasts!). Thanks for the lovely post. What "plan" are you doing? Seems as if you're recording all of your food, exercising and drinking a lot of water. I did that, too. Was NOT rewarded by a 6 pound weight loss. What's up?!

August 21, 2006 12:13 PM  
Blogger Cookie said...

Excellent post, it really went right to my heart, every bit of it. Especially the "recipe" for lasting recovery that you described and how we can keep that recovery from getting a legitimate start by waiting for the next meal, for Monday, etc. You have very keen insight and a gift for putting it into words, thank you!

August 21, 2006 1:56 PM  
Blogger Dagny said...

Hello Belle!
Just found your blog. I see a lot of myself here in your thoughts. But I admit I couldn't have done what you did! I had to have WLS! You're a better man than me, lady!

Congratulations on everything you've accomplished and most assuredly will continue to accomplish!
Dagny

August 21, 2006 7:05 PM  
Blogger Dagny said...

OH, sorry. I don't have a profile on my blog so you may not be able to find it. It's I Am Unrecognizable.

August 21, 2006 7:08 PM  
Blogger One fabulous bitch said...

OMG, heart wrenching and inspiring at the same time. Pissing on today. Jesus. I've never looked at it like that before but I've pissed on plenty of days that could have been wonderful, happy times. Thank you for posting this, I'm going to print it out and keep it for one of those pissy days.

August 21, 2006 7:16 PM  
Blogger Kimberly said...

"I don't know how or what or which set of circumstances combines to create that window of opportunity for a lasting recovery."

Well put. This is something I thought about frequently when I was I'll-start-tomorrow-ing. Because I knew I had done it in the past, been motivated enough to just do it, but I wasn't getting that strong desire. And I'm just coming to realize that this is different for everyone. For me, this time anyway, one of the strongest motivators was creating an obsessively structured tracking log. The control is what has me hooked.

August 22, 2006 10:45 PM  
Blogger Miss Michele said...

Ahh, my BAB...i'm so glad you dropped by my site. I loved your comments and felt that you really "got me".

This post is not unfamiliar to me in the fact that Obesity Help was a site I devoured before I became abstinent again in OA 2.5 months ago. I noticed a couple of things on that site that drew red flags. However, at the time, I ignored the red flags and was feverishly determined that I must get the surgery since there was no hope of ever being able to take the 12 step journey yet again. After losing 200 lbs. twice in 12 step programs, I know the dance of relapse quite well.

What I saw on the site was the thrill of that first weight loss -- the new clothes, the men, the excitement -- the illusion that all was better cuz they were thin. That scared me but I have come to accept that is the rite of passage for any former fatty who loses a lot of weight.

The other red flag was the "cheating" ideas they shared with each other. There wasn't a lot of surrender going on, but moreso a goal of getting all the old stuff without the repercussions. Unfortunately, surgery seems to be the gold standard in the obesity dilemma. More and more surgeries every year. But the stats are sketchy on the longevity.

I've never professed that I know what anybody should do regarding losing weight. I do know that the only thing that has ever worked for me is freedom from cravings and a plan of eating that has accountability and removal of craving producing substances.

It sucks to 400 lbs. again and I really didn't think I could ever trust enough to give it another whirl. But here I am one day at a time...giving it a whirl!

By the way, I piss on today all the damn time...and it sucks...love the AA oldtimers...they really have a way of keeping it simple and putting me straight in the eye of realistic recovery.

Much love Big Ass Belle!

August 23, 2006 7:46 AM  
Blogger Melissa said...

I am so moved to read on with your blog. I am really proud of your accomplishments and CHOICES you make. As a victim to circumstance and trauma, my shrink says, many victims lose that sense of being able to make choices becuase of being soooo traumatized. You having recognized your choices is truly an inspiration for me to move from not having choices to one of full of choices. You Go Belle!!!!

September 13, 2006 10:04 PM  

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