When all hope is lost

Monday, February 28, 2011 Permalink

I haven’t been ‘dieting’ over the past few weeks and – as a result – I haven’t been as stressed about my weight, weight loss, exercise and so forth.  Of course I haven’t actually lost any weight over that time, but fortunately also, I seem to have barely gained any.  I finally got on the scales a week or so ago, having not been on them for at least a month.  Given my history (of gaining 11kgs in one month) you never know what to expect, but I was only up a couple of kilos and some of them may have been the result of 1kg of hot chips the night before.

I am finally back into some walking, though my friends and I haven’t managed more than once a week due to inclement weather and my own apathy.  I find I only go if they go so I am at their mercy.  I am still doing pilates a couple of times a week but the 8 week challenge has gone out of the window and I haven’t yet been weighed (4 weeks into the challenge).

A friend of the friend I walk with (who often comes with us) has had lap-band surgery.  She hasn’t lost a huge amount of weight and from my reading that isn’t uncommon.  Many people might only lose 10-20kgs at most.  A few others, however, lose most of what they need to.

I am one of those ‘holier than thou’ types who has always thought of weight-loss surgery as ‘cheating’.  A couple of times when the surgery has been suggested to me I have been horrified, thinking: 1. I’m not big enough to need it; and 2. I can lose 10-20kgs myself (if that’s all I am going to lose through the surgery).

But I am now reconsidering.  I cannot stay on a diet.  I cannot control my eating.  I admit it.  I am weak and pathetic – when it comes to food, that is.  My world exists around food.  My nights are all about food.  Food is the only thing that brings me any comfort or joy.  And that sucks.

I realise I have put my life on hold over the past 20-25 years, waiting to lose weight… to be happy.  I also know that weight loss won’t make me happy.  I will still be me; and I recall that dieting to a 45kg anorexic as a 16 year old didn’t make me happy.  But, until I get to the root of WHY I overeat and abuse my body so much (ie. the disease) I need to treat the symptoms.  My eating and overweightedness (see, I can’t admit to obesity) is one of them.  So, I am going to bite the bullet and consider weight loss surgery – and as I want the least invasive option I am looking at lap-banding (aka laparoscopic gastric banding).

As I said, I have been doing some research, so I have read some horror stories.  One woman talked of being only able to eat a cup of food each day YEARS after her surgery.  Her post on a forum was filled with negatives, but then someone asked if she would do it again and she said, ‘In a hearbeat.’  I can’t bring myself to diet properly because the notion of ‘going without’ is more than I can stand.  I have written before about my frustration that I cannot make sacrifices in the short term for long term health (and aesthetic) benefits.  My fear of deprivation is too great.  It is almost like I am swooning with a hand across my brow panting, ‘Why live at all if I can’t eat what I want?’

Today I read a blog by someone who underwent gastric bypass surgery – a slightly more invasive option than I am considering.  Jennifer Joyner talks about having a food addiction which she needed to fight but had been unable to.  Her story gives some balance to my perception that having surgery is somehow cheating – that it takes no willpower or strength.  What I realise from reading her posts, is that the nexus between food and EVERYTHING will be broken.  What on earth will I have to obsess about if I can’t obsess about food, about dieting. I know that – in some ways – it is ‘forced’ weight loss.  But hopefully it is also training me to eat smaller portions AND more importantly it should mean that food is not the most important thing in my life.

At this stage I have made an appointment with my GP for the referral.  As she is busy that is still a couple of weeks away.  It gives me time to think and consider before making the next appointment.  I still have concerns; and I am trying to work out if I can do it without actually telling people.  The fact that I want to hide what I am doing should give me pause for thought.


I'd love to hear your thoughts