Just like that.

After my Poppy died last year, I struggled so badly with eating the things I was supposed to eat.  I coped with my loss in an unhealthy way and comforted myself with comfort foods.  When I tell people the story of my weight gain after bariatric surgery, I always say the same thing, “It felt like overnight I had gained 30 pounds and 3 sizes.”  I realize that sounds absurd, that it wouldn’t literally happen overnight.  But that’s what it felt like.  It felt like one day my size 14 clothing fit, and within a matter of days I was needing 20s again to be comfortable.  There was no transition, it was just BAM and the weight was back on.

I’ve thought about it since then, about if it was REALLY such a quick transformation like I thought, or if my mind just told me it was.  Then I went to Denver for the weekend for a conference.  Four days.  I didn’t eat horribly, but I gave myself permission to have a few drinks, some snacks I’d avoided for awhile, and pasta for one of my meals.  I didn’t go crazy, it’s not like I ate thousands of calories every day.  But when I got back, the scale said 10 pounds heavier.  IN FOUR DAYS.

I know that’s not “true” weight.  To gain 10 actual pounds of fat, I would have had to eat a ridiculous amount of calories in those four days.  Part of it is water retention for the salty snacks, part is bloat from my period, and maybe a small part is an actual gain.  The difference between then and now though is that I’m keeping myself in check.  I didn’t allow myself to continue beyond the weekend.  I got right back to my routine and healthy eating, and three days later, 7 of those “pounds” are gone.

But do you see how quickly things can get out of control?  And when you’re already feeling defeated and sad because of a personal tragedy, then all of a sudden you’re failing at weight loss too?  It takes effort.  It takes hard work.  It’s not easy.  I had always worried before surgery that it would be looked at as “The Easy Way Out.”  But I’m here to tell you that you still have to work damn hard, you have to put in the effort, or it doesn’t work.  I know I have some gals reading that are thinking about surgery, and i want to paint the whole picture for you.  Is it worth it to me?  Absolutely.  Would I do it again knowing that I would gain 60 pounds back a year after surgery?  Definitely.  I would just remind myself that it doesn’t happen without a lot of effort on my part.  And that if I get off track, whether intentionally or on accident, I just have to get back on track.  If I fall off the horse 100 times, it doesn’t matter.  What matters is that I got back on it 101 times.

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Long Time Gone

It has been quite some time since I’ve written–I had to go back now and check to see when the last time actually was–February.  And here we are in July.  So what’s been going on?

We were lucky enough to travel to Florida twice this year already.  The first time was just for a long weekend for a friend’s wedding, which was lovely (but the drive was NOT).  The second time was for our family vacation to Anna Maria Island.  It was a very pretty place, and somewhere on the Gulf where I had not actually been, so it was nice to travel somewhere new.  Later this month we have to take a long drive again, but this time to Colorado.  I have a conference to attend for my Thirty-one business, and Eddie always comes along for the ride.  This will be my third year going, and I’m excited to see what’s in store.  After this trip though, we will be saving our pennies, as we have one more trip planned at the end of the year for a good friend’s wedding–in Cancun!  We’ve never been out of the country, which reminds me… passports… and we opted to have this trip be our anniversary/birthday/Christmas present to one another.  We are “experience” people and would rather go places and experience things instead of have actual possessions anyway, so not getting the physical gifts on those holidays is not really a big deal to us.  We will have the memories!

Eddie had a double osteotomy last summer and is still healing from the second one.  For those who don’t know, they cut a chunk of bone out of each of his thighs, essentially breaking them each, then put a plate in and wait for the break to heal.  One of the breaks is still there (how he walks around I have no idea) but it is slowly getting better.  Once it’s healed up, two more surgeries will be in the works to remove the plates, as they are causing a lot of pain and discomfort in being there.  Hopefully once the plates are out he will have more relief from the daily pain he is in.  He is the toughest person I know and I don’t know how he does it.  No other choice though, so just have to keep plugging along and live the life you have!

Despite his surgeries, he’s still done great maintaining his weight loss from the sleeve surgery in February 2013.  Over 2 years post-op and he still maintains a 200+ pound weight loss!  At his lowest he was around 160, but he is more comfortable hovering around 190, which is what he’s maintained. I’m so proud of him!  I, however, have struggled with re-gain.  I could blame it on a number of things in my personal life, but the bottom line is that I stopped following my bariatric diet plan, and when you do that, you gain weight.  I lost my Poppy, I had a stressful year afterwards, I had a giant tumor pop up in my breast and had to have surgery to have it removed (no cancer!), and a host of other stressful things happened that I couldn’t control, so I let my eating get out of control too.  I am working hard now though to get back on track and lose what I gained in the last year (60 pounds), and then hopefully some beyond that.  My initial goal though is to take off what I had gained back.  It seems that no one really talks about re-losing the weight after a post-op gain.  I’ve gone to support groups to seek motivation from others who may have done it, but those people aren’t there.  I’m sure they exist, but they’re not around to be motivation… so I will be my own motivation, and I will then go to those support groups after I’ve succeeded so that I can be the motivation for someone that might be going through this too.

I guess there’s not a whole lot more going on right now, just mostly same old same old… plugging along and rolling with the punches!