Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Has it been five years?

On September 24th, it was five years since I had surgery. I made a note of it at the time but since I was in the middle of having a nervous breakdown, I didn’t get a chance to write about it.

Also, there really isn’t much to say.

I’d take some measurements but I just took a bunch the month prior. I don’t think anything has really changed. Not enough to bother taking more.

I’d go to the doctor for a check-up but my medical group won’t take me until January (I was late last year with my testing and now they say it hasn’t been 12 months and so I'm not eligible for my annual physical) and I’ve been to the doctors so much lately that I really don’t want to do any more tests anyway.

Same for labs. They claim they missed the B6 last time and I’m “overdue” for it, but they won’t do anything else until January unless I give them a reason. So I think I’ll wait and do them all together.

Mentally, setting aside my Topamax issues – assuming you can and it’s not all inter-related – I’m finding it harder and harder to relate to the WLS community.

At the OH conference the weekend before last, the keynote speaker said obesity is forever and you are never cured. A lot of people nodded their heads. I made a face.

His reasoning is that if my surgery were reversed, I’d gain back my weight. Okay, I can’t argue with that because it’s true. But my surgery can’t be reversed. It’s physically impossible because they cut off part of my stomach and threw it away.

This is my life now and my new normal. I can’t go back. Therefore, for all practical purposes, I am cured.

I definitely don’t feel like a fat person faking being thin any more like I sometimes did in the beginning. And I don’t feel like there is a fat person in there who will come screaming out at the first opportunity if I give her the least chance. She’s had plenty of opportunities and …. Nothing.

What I feel like is a cancer survivor.

They tell them that after five years with no signs of cancer that they can consider themselves cured and not in remission.

So I think I’ll consider myself cured too. At some point the difference between being ‘in remission’ and ‘cured’ is a difference in search of a distinction and I think this is one of them.

I will say that not everyone who gets WLS ends up here. I think that’s just because it’s one of those treatments that doesn’t work the same amount for everyone.

But, for me, the surgery mostly fixed what was wrong with me and that let me fix the rest.

Don’t get me wrong: I go through periods where I eat badly and/or don’t workout like I want to in my ideal vision of myself. But the thing is that they never last. They aren’t the first step into the abyss. They are temporary aberrations. My natural state is to eat healthy and move my body and my brain does it’s best to keep me in that state, sometimes in spite of myself.

It’s kind of awesome and I feel very lucky because some people do have a fat person lurking inside just waiting for them to let down their guard. And it’s obvious that this sucks for them.

However, I do think some people need to figure out how to be normal. They need balance. This addiction model of obesity does not work for everyone and I can see people it does not work for and I'd really like to get them to cut it out. I see them in a cycle of deprivation followed by over-indulgence because they can't accept themselves and I think "that can't be healthy" and I want to fix them.

But that's their fight and their decision for how to deal with it so I just have to let go, I guess, even though it's hard for me because I tend to be a "fixer."

Speaking of fixing... it seems that going down to 50 mg of Topamax has fixed my psychological issues. Unfortunately, my pain issues are back. I have a lot more discomfort going on with my head. It's frustrating, but at least it's the off season so I have the opportunity to go into workout hibernation and let everything heal naturally. I just have to trust that this will happen this time and in a timeframe that is acceptable to me.
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