Updates or rant? Updates or rant? Which shall I choose…?
Updates. I’ll rant another time.
It’s less than 2 weeks until I go under the knife. I’m not cutting myself – scout’s honor! I decided it’s time to take some accountability for my wicked ways and have gastric bypass surgery. I’ve gotten mixed reviews from my friends and colleagues – even my therapist, which was the most disconcerting.
The main problem has always been my psychological attachment to food. Food was a reward, my shoulder to cry on, my close friend in good times and in bad. Food never abandoned me or made me feel worthless – until one day I looked in the mirror and saw what food did to my body. A hundred pounds too late, I realized that food wasn’t a friend; it was a crutch. I needed food to comfort me, I needed it to celebrate and I needed it to mourn. Without it, I felt incomplete.
Well, I’ve since learned that I can have a good time in life without being food-focused. The problem is the habit is so difficult to break. I snack here, gulp there and — boom! I’m back up, 100 pounds over again.
My back aches constantly, I get winded brushing my fucking hair, elevators creak when I get on (don’t bullshit me – I know it’s me), and I have a fupa (for all you n00bs out there, it actually stands for “front upper pu**y area”). I swore to myself I’d stop eating when I saw the beginning of a fupa. Guess what? Little bastard snuck up on me. Nothing like putting powder under your fupa to prevent chafing and sweating. Goddamit – not cool.
Anyway. Ahem. I view this surgery as my Antabuse. For those not familiar with Antabuse, it’s a medication prescribed for people with a severe alcohol addiction. The medication blocks the absorption of alcohol in the liver, causing it to free-float in the blood in a higher concentration than if it was metabolized by the liver. This causes some really bad side effects like nausea, vomiting, headache – your worse hangover, basically. The point of the medication is to deter people with alcoholism to not drink, thus avoiding those shitty side effects.
Gastric bypass is to me as Antabuse is to an alcoholic. My stomach will go from being the size of a football to that of a EGG. I will be forced to take small sips of water, small bites of food – the right food – for the rest of my days. I will lose these 100 pounds, yes, but I will be forced to view food as a tool of survival, not as a coping skill. Eating sugar will likely cause me great distress due to dumping syndrome*. I’m okay with that. Something has to give, y’all because I’m tired of feeling like this. My back aches. My feet hurt. My A1C is not good – I’m pre-diabetic now. My cholesterol is high. My waistline is higher. It hurts to move (what was that about exercise?). I clearly don’t know how to eat sugar in small amounts and I don’t know how to control myself despite years of trying. I will make myself do it through biological means to save my life.
My mom’s mom? Died from atherosclerosis officially, but went through 4 years of ESRD* on dialysis before the dementia hit. You know what causes the renal failure? Diabetes from obesity later in life.
My mom’s dad? Died from a sudden heart attack. Had to buy an extra-large casket. He almost didn’t fit in the crypt. He was known for eating wild game. His typical breakfast consisted of scrambled eggs (cooked in bacon grease), grits, biscuits and gravy, sausage and bacon. On the fucking daily. Oh, and he was an insulin-dependent diabetic.
My dad’s mom? Fucking anomaly. She’s had 5 heart attacks, 3 stents in her heart, is morbidly obese and is diabetic.
My mom had the gastric bypass after a lifetime of morbid obesity and watching her parents die from obesity-related deaths. As much shit as I talk about her a lot of the time, she has been my rock in this. She’s been with me to all of my appointments and has talked to me about her struggles with her weight and her reasoning behind her final decision to have such an extreme surgery. She said she’d support me no matter what decision I made.
I was so unsupportive when she had her surgery – she didn’t tell me until she’d already scheduled it. I felt betrayed and angry. I didn’t get to go on this journey with her and she never explained all her reasons why. I didn’t understand then that it wasn’t for me to understand her reasons. They were hers and hers alone. She never lashed back at me for the nasty things I said. She just kept her head up. If she cried I never knew. That’s a mother; that’s a testament to real strength. Cause I would have slapped the shit out of me and told me all about myself.
Anyway. My family is riddled with obesity and disease; I won’t let their past dictate my future.
*ESRD – End Stage Renal Disease
Dumping syndrome – when food/sugar moves too quickly from the stomach to the small bowel, causing cramping, diarrhea.