The other day, standing in the shower, for a brief moment – I seriously started thinking about stomach surgery. Packing up a little car, going for a ride, talking to a doctor, and having surgery to shrink my football stomach down to a lemon.
In that moment, I quit.
I quit wanting to try, wanting to prove people wrong, and wanting to be proud of my weight loss. In that moment I decided that I will never pull the weight off, and that I’ll be obese the rest of my life. (Even if I don’t want to be.) I decided that I was only fooling myself into thinking that I can do it. (Even though a few years ago I was doing it and a few months ago, I was doing it.) I decided that the journey was too long and if I got the surgery that it would help and take away half the battle. I’d go down one hundred pounds so quick that I would have the energy, and the oompth I’m missing out on. I’d probably be taken off some medications and have a different outlook on life.
I got out of the shower and stood in front of the mirror and stared at myself. I looked at all the extra that I have. I lifted my arms and looked at my sides, I turned and looked at my back. I felt tears, but I didn’t cry. I didn’t let the feeling overtake me and I didn’t let the tears win. I dried off, got dressed (in my black t-shirt and black shorts, which I wear all the time because nothing else fits and I cannot afford clothes that fit me), and sat on my bed – in the dark.
I started thinking about life and things I want to see, or accomplish, or feel, or live. I started thinking about complications, and possible outcomes after surgery. I started thinking about that conversation I’d missing out on when someone says, “oh wow, you’ve lost a lot of weight.” I remembered that I always wanted to say, “Thank you, it’s taken a lot, but well worth it.” I think about how the conversation would be different if I have the surgery:
“Oh wow, you’ve lost a lot of weight. You look great!”
“Thank you, but I cheated, I had the surgery knowing damn good && well that I could do it on my own.”
The look on their face will be priceless, their smile would falter and they’d have a look on their face that screamed ‘I’m sorry I asked’.
I’d walk away, hating myself, because deep inside I know I could do it without it.
A few days passed before I ever talked to The Boyfriend about it. We were standing in a gas station, I had just bought three egg rolls out of the hot box, and we were leaving to come home. It was early (my late) and I had just gotten off of work – I was hungry, but I didn’t want to go home and cook. Who wants to do that when you just worked twelve hours and had to get up in six hours to work twelve more?
The cashier had just told us that she and her husband had the surgery. Together. I scanned her face, her arms, body and I sighed. That look flashed through my mind. She’s older than me, but it briefly frightened me. Would I look like that?
On the way to the car I told them boyfriend, “I’ve been thinking about the surgery lately. Maybe it would help.” He was silent at first, like he usually is when it comes to my weight conversations, but then he spoke. He sighed, and told me that if I wanted it he wouldn’t stop me, but he doesn’t want me to have it. He always tells me, but sometimes after doctor visits and they tell me I’ve gained weight since the last visit, if a doctor tells me I have to have it or death will occur, that he would step aside and let it happen. But he doesn’t want me to get it – I understand that.
I told him, once we were sitting down in the car, that maybe if I had the surgery, it would give me the weight loss boost I’m needing (or think I’m needing) to get the rest off. His face fell slightly, and he just stared at me. I know what he was saying without him saying it. It’s not hard to figure out his feelings toward something he doesn’t agree with. I understand – I don’t agree with it, if it’s not the last option. (I don’t think someone that weighs under 250 pounds should have it.)
It’s been a few days since then and it’s been on my mind. The thoughts – the shower – his reaction – his look – that conversation.
What I’ve realized since then is a few things.
One. I know I can pull the weight off by eating better and exercising. I’ve done it before. (Some part of my body seems to start hurting after three months, and I stop, put all the weight plus more back on, and then hate myself.)
Two. I want to be able to tell people that I did it with hard work, determination, and a lot of blood/sweat/tears. (Surgery will not help me do that.)
Three. I think I love myself too much to put myself through it.
So what has all of this thinking made me realize?
I still want to work hard, take years and pull the weight off by myself. Not with help from a surgeon who is out to make a million dollars by fifty. I know it’s going to be hard, a long battle, and it’s going to take a lot of time.
But I can do this. I just have to get my butt in gear and stop making up excuses as to why I can’t, or wont do it.