March 06, 2006


So you want to know why I've been so quiet here, right? You want to know what is going on with me, why I haven't written an update in well over a month?

OK, I'll spill the beans now.

I'm leaving this evening to head to a hotel in Birmingham. Tomorrow morning at about 5am I will report to the hospital for my gastric bypass surgery. Yes, I'm having a bypass. Yes, I've thought about this for years. Yes, I've tried everything else under the sun short of lopping off body parts.

Unless you've been a hundred or more pounds overweight, you have no idea where I'm coming from. Yeah, it must suck to need to lose ten or twenty or even fifty pounds. At this point in my life I'd love to be in that boat rather than this one. I'm not, though, and this is the route I have chosen to take to correct years of dieting myself up to this weight.

I wasn't always fat. In high school I had a great body and knew it. When I was in the military I was still in shape, forced exercise will tend to keep you there. However, when I got out I was a little "soft". That wasn't quite so bad and once I started going to the gym it was better. Then I got pregnant. And lived in Germany (the food....god, what wonderful food!). And then moved to the States and got depressed. On came the weight. I tried Redux (a form of phen-fen) and lost a little weight, only to put it right back on plus a lot more when I had to stop taking it. I did Atkins to no end...and while I have always felt better eating that way, I could never maintain the loss for any extended period of time.

Hello, I am Michelle and I love food. All kinds of food.

Today is, hopefully, the last day in my life that I will ever see this number on the scale. I will drive down to the hotel with John where we will go to sleep early (OK, we'll go to bed early...I doubt I'll actually sleep much!) and then we'll walk into the hospital in the morning to start changing my life.

I wasn't going to have the bypass surgery. I was going to try and get the lap-band. I even chose my specific insurance because they covered the band. I went to all my appointments, chose a doctor down south who performed the surgery I wanted. Then I deployed for a while and got a huge disappointment just before I came insurance company was going to stop covering the surgery I wanted at the end of the year. There was no way that the doctor's office would be able to fit me in before that happened, so if I wanted any kind of obesity surgery, it was going to have to be the bypass. I was pretty stunned as I sat there and read the email from the nurse.

Then I started reading...anything and everything I could get my hands on about the RNY surgery. The pros, the cons, and everything in between. I actually made lists and was even close to making charts to help me make my decision. In the end, I decided that the trade-offs were going to be worth it for me, and the risks were not that much more than the band for me. I'm a healthy girl...I'm just fucking fat.

Yes, I am rearranging the insides in the hopes of gaining perfect health and a smaller body. Yes, I will have to take vitamins for the rest of my life. Yes, I will have to make sure I am vigilant about drinking my water, eating my protein, and exercising. Yes, I will more than likely end up needing my gallbladder out at a later time (for now mine is picture perfect so they won't remove it) as well as a high probability that I'll get at least one hernia. Me and Madonna baby, we'll have a lot in common I guess! I may need plastic surgery to remove excess skin if it doesn't 'bounce back' like I hope.

Unless you've been this heavy, you'll never know the insecurities that come with the pounds. You'll never feel the need to scan a room and see if you are the biggest person. You'll never eye those stupid plastic chairs, wondering if they are strong enough to hold you. You'll never know that the face on the outside is far from matching the feelings on the inside.

The comments of "Oh, you have such a pretty face...if only you'd lose a little weight." and "If you would just eat right and exercise..." are hurtful and humiliating. I've eaten right and exercised my way to this weight. I need this extra tool to push me over that proverbial edge onto the downhill slide where I can succeed.

Do you not agree with what I'm doing? I honestly don't care. Keep your comments to yourself in that case. I have this handy thing called a Delete key and I'm not afraid to use it. Feel the need to point me to all the websites with stories about bypass surgery gone wrong? Don't bother, I've found them all on my own already. Want to tell me about how your cousin's sister's boyfriend's mother died from this same surgery? Please don't, as I've already read dozens and dozens of heartbreaking stories. Do you just want to email me and call me names? Really? Are you 12? Do you think I don't KNOW that I'm fat? Do you think I don't look in the mirror every single day and hate what I see? I love myself on the inside, hate myself on the outside....and now I'm taking steps to fix that. Do you think I'm taking the easy way out by having surgery? Well, I have one thing to say to you then, and it will be the end of this entry....

Remember, it is a scalpel, not a fucking wand.

Posted by rowEn at 01:51 PM