I have spent a lot of time making a decision, and I have been debating if I wanted to tell people about it. I think it is hard for me because of how I was treated as a child, and by some of my family for so many years because of my weight. Now I see and listen to the way people treat people for being overweight as if it is a choice, and it is a difficult subject to discuss. I am constantly harassed by doctors, even since I was 5 years old, telling me that I am fat, and that I need to make changes. My underlying health is fine. My cholesterol, my sugar, and everything else that they threaten fat people with as the end of the world. I am fine, but I am fat.
I also got over my body image problems many years ago. I rid myself of toxic people in my life who told me how ugly I am, and I focused on what I want to be. My body is difficult to control, and now the medications that I’m on, and the diseases that I have make it even more difficult, but I am surrounded by people who love me, and I love myself.
I had many conversations with my doctors about my medications that make me gain weight, and the reasons why I’m not able to lose or maintain weight loss no matter my diet, or exercise routine. We finally discussed the idea of me talking to a bariatric surgeon. I talked to one a couple of years ago, and I did not like him. He was like a televangelist, and tried to promise me that if I had gastric sleeve surgery I would be cured of all of my incurable diseases (lupus, epilepsy, etc.) I decided to not do the surgery because he scared me. A year later I came across another surgeon who did not seem so crazy, and I went to see her speak about the operations that she performs. I decided that I would have an appointment with her to see what she said to me, and she wasn’t crazy.
So, in two weeks, I am having gastric sleeve surgery. I am happy to be taking this step. It is more about my health and my joints than it is anything else. I’m looking forward to the possibility that my hips and knees will thank me in a few months.
I’ve seen some people call this, and other bariatric surgeries a cop out. They believe that committing to a hardcore exercise and diet routine will do the same thing. I am here to assure you that it will not do that for me. I cannot do a very hardcore exercise routine because of my many handicaps, though I do work out at least 5 days per week these days. I am also on a strict diet, but my weight loss is still limited because of my medications, and because of a ridiculously slow metabolism. This is why I had so many conversations with my large team of doctors. I cannot stop my medicines, and the side effects are what they are. I didn’t come to this decision lightly or quickly, and I’ve spent over 7 months with this current surgeon/dietician/team making the plan for what I’m going to do. I also had to get approval/written consent from ALL of my doctors, and that is not a small list!
I have also put a lot of effort into explaining this surgery to my kids as an exercise in helping my health, not changing my body. I have put way too much effort into saving them from the body shaming that I went through as a child to undo it all now.
Tomorrow I begin the next step in my diet process, which is my pre-op liquid diet. We will see if the whole household survives the 2 weeks until my surgery 😉