I’m Floating

I bought a shirt at Target yesterday and I can’t stop thinking about it. It’s just a $5 t-shirt, nothing special, but that’s not why I’m excited about it. I’m excited because it’s a size medium. MEDIUM.

That may not seem like a big deal to you, but it is to me. I haven’t worn a size smaller than an XXL in more than ten years. I started gaining weight in college and from then on kept going. I was never HUGE, but I was big enough, especially on my petite 4’11” frame. Finally, I decided to get the gastric sleeve surgery and I really don’t regret it.

Here is a picture of me making cow eyes at Thor while celebrating my 10 year wedding anniversary at Disneyland back in December, 2014:

No Chris Hemsworth but HEEELLLOOOOO
No Chris Hemsworth but HEEELLLOOOOO

This was two months before my surgery and 11 months after my last baby.  Now, here’s my after picture, taken last Saturday to celebrate my mother-in-law’s birthday:

That's ME?!
That’s ME?!

Am I super skinny? Hell, no, but I’m wearing a size 14 after trying on a different dress that was a size 12 and also fit. That’s a HUGE improvement over my size 18 or 20 I was wearing before. Huge. That’s 60 pounds of weight difference.

Reasons I got the surgery:

  1. My kids. I want to be there for my kids. Climbing, walking, swinging, playing, all those things are SO MUCH HARDER when you have an extra 60 pounds on you. Get a big backpack and fill it with TWELVE five pound sacks of sugar. Now try climbing the stairs. Easy is it?  Heart pounding a little more than usual? 60 pounds kept me from being a mom I wanted to be.
  2. Health. I was healthy when I had the surgery. Great blood pressure, good cholesterol, only vitamin I was low on was vitamin D.  That doesn’t mean I would stay that way though. 60 pounds does a number on your heart and other organs and makes them wear out faster. I want to be there for my kids remember? I love my husband, but his idea of giving the kids a vegetable is…actually I don’t think he’s ever given them a vegetable. They need me.
  3. Nothing else worked. There’s growing evidence that for some people diet and exercise simply isn’t enough. It’s not just a matter of will power, your body just will not let go of that extra weight. I tried ALL the diets and just stopped trying becuase I never lost more than 15 pounds no matter how close I stuck to it. At one point I worked with a personal trainer twice a week, was weighed and measured once a week, AND restricted my calories and kept a food journal. FIFTEEN FUCKING POUNDS after a YEAR. Fuck that noise.

Not reasons I did it:

  1. Society. You should look how you want to look, fat or skinny (I’m using the word fat because it’s a descriptor and not an insult, I was fat, remember?). I was never harassed or fat-shamed and if I were the harasser would live a very short painful life. I was comfortable in my own skin. You saw the Thor pic, right? Confident, that’s me!
  2. My husband. He’s not perfect but he has NEVER, EVER, NOT ONCE made any comment about my body in a negative manner. Ever. And since I’m happily married, I don’t need other men to find me attractive either, so I didn’t do this for the male gaze. Except maybe Thor’s.

I would do it again in a heartbeat, even though it feels like cheating still. I have to remember that I DID do everything else to lose the weight without surgery. But here I am five months post-surgery and down 60 pounds. I sat in an airplane seat and didn’t have to worry about the seat belt fitting. I’m wearing a medium sized t-shirt. And I climb playground equipment like nothing else. I’m floating.


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