Yup, you read that right! I have lost ONE HUNDRED FREAKING POUNDS!! Well, 100.7 to be exact! I thought about waiting a day or two so I could make the title 101 lbs for my 101 list but I just couldn’t wait!
I don’t believe it! Years ago when I made my 101 list one of the things that I made sure was on there was to lose 100 lbs, even though deep down I didn’t really feel like it was ever a possibility for me… but it has happened!
Now? I feel like anything is possible, and that’s not a feeling I’ve had in a long time.
It has taken me a lot of years of yo-yo dieting, a lot of heartache and frustration and even a surgery to finally get here but every single minute of it was worth the feeling I have right now! I can’t believe I can actually say that I have lost a hundred pounds! That’s something people on TV and the internet do, not people like me!
Well, a Project Fatass goal update wouldn’t be the same without a fish!
There you have it, a 100 lb fish complete with a dude with his barn door open!
You know what else I lost?
An entire aunt Pearly, who I’m pretty sure didn’t even weigh 100 lbs soaking wet. Man, I miss her… crazy ‘ol’ bird!
The average female Newfoundland dog.
400 sticks of butter!
Yeah you get the point! It weighs a lot and I can really notice the difference not dragging it around anymore.
Now, on to my 4.5 month update. Yes, it’s 4.5 months because this month totally got away from me. I was busier than usual, I had a horrible stall which made me not even want to think about taking photos and writing blogs and I just generally couldn’t be arsed. I’ll try to get it on time next month.
Anyhoo… I’m going to try to sum up what it has been like for me and what has changed in the past month.
The Physical Bits
I seem to have gotten my B12 under control, which has been great. After taking it for 5 weeks I foolishly tried to go without and my doctor told me not to do that again. So I am now taking it as ordered and I haven’t had any more really dragged out, all systems down type of tiredness since.
My energy levels have been pretty good. I’ve gotten in a fair bit of exercise and am out and about more in general. A lot of this still relies on the weather for me, when it’s sunny I just want to be outside doing things and being active, when it’s rainy I want to get under a blanket with a book or a movie and take naps. Sunshine makes me happy, like… crazy happy. The rain doesn’t make me sad, but it leaves me more blank than anything. I’m not sad, I’m not super happy and gung ho, I’m just sort of there not feeling much of anything either way.
I had my first issue with food a few days ago. I am still very careful about what I eat but I think I must have not chewed a piece of something properly (which is odd because I really am quite conscious of my chewing usually) because I spent one night in misery. I think whatever it was must have gotten stuck so anything I drank that night just sat in my stomach and left me feeling like I was going to vomit. It felt really really bad. I had pains in my belly, I felt like I was one bad burp away from throwing up (which put me on the bed in mummy mode for a while) and I just felt blah overall. I eventually had to resort to making myself vomit and whatever it was must have come out because I felt fine afterwards. I went to bed after and the next day I felt fine and have since…
Can’t complain, it was over four months before I had any issue with food at all and this was pretty minor really.
The hair loss has continued and is going strong. I notice a drastic difference in my hair over the past month but I’m trying not to obsess over it. I am probably going to cut it a bit shorter soon and see if that makes me feel better, and will reassess the situation in a few weeks. Hopefully it will start slowing down and I can move into the regrowth phase soon.
I am shrinking out of clothes at lightning speed. Even at times when my weight hasn’t changed I still had clothes that became too big, it’s shocking!
I had a nasty flu for about a week, which was my first illness since the surgery. My husband went out to find sugar free lozenges and cough syrup (which tasted like ass) and I had a nasty cough for quite a while, so needless to say there wasn’t a lot of exercise happening for that week or two.
The skin, oh lordy haha the SKIN! This is something everyone feels the need to ask me about and inform me of. Yes, things are starting to hang and sag on me. Yes, I am starting to get batwings, saggy thighs and squishy bits. YES, WLS patients get loose skin… but you know, SO DOES ANYONE ELSE who was obese and lost a large amount of weight. It has nothing to do with how quickly you lose weight and everything to do with how big you let yourself become and how much you stretched your skin out. So in the end, no matter how I went about losing this weight, the skin was going to be there. That’s just the life of someone who got too damn fat… no matter how they get thin.
Other than that minor issue I just mentioned, the food really has not been an issue. I eat a lot of variety and have saved a lot of recipes on my Bypass Friendly Recipes board on Pinterest. They may not all be bypass friendly already but can easily be tweaked to cut out fat and sugar. I’ve made a lot of them and we have more variety in our diet now than ever. I feel far less restricted now after weight loss surgery than I have in the past when dieting, which I find sort of crazy.
To be honest, food has been the least of my concerns through this process. I am still never hungry, I eat a lot of yummy food and have a lot of variety and don’t really ever feel deprived or like I miss the things I can’t have. Other than when I am at a restaurant I don’t feel like my life revolves around trying to find things I can or can’t eat, but I don’t go to restaurants very often anyway.
All is well in the food department!!
The exercise has been going pretty well. I still basically follow a “What I can, when I can” mentality and it seems to be working well so far. I do try to push myself to go sometimes when I don’t feel like it but I haven’t set myself a strict xx times a week and do xx kilometers type of regimen. I know from my past issues that if I do that and don’t live up to my own expectations I get defeated and pissed off and that ends up being totally counterproductive. This seems to work really well for me so far and it keeps the enjoyment there for me which is hugely important.
I’ve started tracking my exercise on Endomondo which I really like. It’s nice when I come back from a walk or a bike ride to see all the stats on what I’ve done. I don’t track it when I go on a normal walk with the dogs, go shopping or anything like that, just when I am heading out for an exercise outing. You can see some of my workouts below…
The Mental Bits
This one has been 90% good with 10% bad, I think. Mentally I am still basically the same as I have been all along. I try to stay positive and concentrate on the good things but I’d be lying if I said there weren’t a few moments here and there where I’ve struggled.
The Hair Loss – This has been hard, but not hard in the way that it has stopped me from doing anything. I don’t think about it every minute of the day but there is a slight feeling of panic and dismay every time I shower and see it all come out between my fingers. Right now it’s more of a feeling of dread in regards to what may come of it, rather than what the situation is right now.
The Big Stall – This month I had a massive stall. My weight didn’t change at all for a full three weeks and I was getting really ticked off about it. I could see the changes in my clothes as they were getting big rather quickly, and I knew changes were happening but not seeing it on the scale was frustrating. Of course, this also had to happen when I was within 5 lbs of my 100 lb goal, that certainly didn’t help matters any!
Mother’s Day – This was the big one. Anyone who has followed my story over the years or knows why I had the surgery to begin with knows that it all revolves around me trying to become a mother. It has been a very long and emotional road for me and Mother’s day is often a very difficult day. Usually I would eat my emotions away and avoid what I was feeling. I can’t explain how it would work but if I went out to Burger King for dinner, sat here with a TV show on and a big bag of Maltesers, I got enough pleasure from it to numb the pain of what I was feeling about my infertility and the fact that I am not, and may never be, a mother.
This was the first year that I was forced to face my emotions head on, and it wasn’t pretty.
We got up in the morning and I had Xander take me to a movie to get me out of the house. That worked pretty well to keep me distracted. When I came home the internet was plastered with everything Mother’s Day. People on Facebook talking about the nice things their husbands and children were doing for them, photos of them and their children when they were born, lengthy status messages about what a gift motherhood is and how it’s the best thing that has ever happened to them… on and on, everywhere I looked.
I feel like I have to say that I don’t begrudge any of my friends for being mothers. I’m happy for them and I’m glad that they get to enjoy the day and are treated to a day just for them, because they work hard. I am not bitter and hate them because they have what I don’t, it’s just hard to sit on the sidelines and watch.
I wasn’t really sure what to do with myself. The surgery has taken the decision away from me in regards to binge eating, and I didn’t even WANT food. For the first time in my life I was in an emotional situation and I didn’t WANT food (in fact, it was the opposite, I couldn’t even be bothered to eat and Xander had to remind me to get in the kitchen and make something)… but I DID want something to make me feel better and had absolutely no idea where to turn or what to replace the food with.
I couldn’t talk to my friends, they are all mothers and I was hardly going to call one of them up or message them and spoil their special day with my sadness and frustration. I wasn’t going to call and cry to my own mother because she is MY mother and it’s her special day too, which is probably already hard enough for her with me not being able to be there to do something nice for her. I couldn’t talk about it on Facebook because I’ve seen how that can go in the past when someone else brought it up and faced the wrath of the mothers about ruining their day.
The only clear answer for me was to 1) Stay the hell away from the internet for the rest of the day and 2)… no idea.
So I went to bed, and I slept almost the entire afternoon away.
Then I got up and checked Facebook, because I’m stupid… and finally broke down and sobbed and vented to my husband for about a half hour. Then we had dinner and curled up and watched some TV before heading to bed.
It was a hard day, but I survived it, and I did so without eating enough to feed a small village. Ok, so I didn’t find the most constructive ways to deal with my emotions but I honestly wasn’t expecting how utterly RAW I was going to feel. It was like my emotions were magnified or I felt more vulnerable because I couldn’t hide away with my food and just avoid thinking about it. It was almost like a defenseless feeling and at the end of the day I really had no choice but to allow myself to break down and acknowledge just how much I was hurting, and that was a good thing, I think.
I’m sure there will be more of these moments and I’m glad that not only am I not ALBE to binge eat in these situations but the desire to do so is gone. I just need to think about things and come up with a more constructive way to deal with things when they arise. I’ve spoken with the therapist at my clinic about it and she actually thought I dealt with it quite well, so go figure. I think I may just throw myself into crafting or if, god forbid, next Mother’s Day finds me in the same situation, I will make sure to have fun things planned to keep me distracted. Who knows, maybe by then I will be on my way to becoming a mother too, we can only hope.
People’s comments – This has been a bit of a problem for me. I am very open about having had surgery because I like to talk things out, and I want anyone who has been thinking about the surgery to have a place to read a real experience. I also want my friends who are going through this process to see that they are not alone and someone else is going through the same things as they are. I do not write this to make it open season for the comments of everyone I know… and that’s what a lot of people fail to realize.
I understand that some people are trying to be helpful and I don’t mind that. I also don’t mind people who are curious and have questions, especially people who are thinking of surgery themselves. What I do mind are people who make comments that are completely unnecessary. Anyone who has made an effort to lose weight in any way likes to hear that their efforts are paying off and to know that they have the support of their friends and family. I think that goes especially for WLS patients. The love and support of our friends and family are so important, but so is their discretion.
It is up to US what we want to share… it is up to us to ask your opinions on things that we may or may not want the answers to and it is up to us to tell you about the more private aspects of the surgery and our weight loss.
What we don’t need are endless stories about people who have died from the surgery, tales of an uncle’s wife’s daughter in law’s best friend who had such and such complications, statistics you’ve read on success or regain rates for our surgery or reminders of all that ‘horrible skin’ we are going to have.
We don’t need a run down of your opinion on what areas are changing and what ones need work. We don’t need you to look us from head to toe and tell us what you do and don’t see changing without us even asking you.
We don’t need to hear all the reasons you wouldn’t have the surgery.
There are a lot of things that we don’t want to hear from you regardless of how much you may like to tell us or inform us. There is nothing you can tell us about OUR surgery that we probably don’t already know. There are also a lot of things you can say to us that will do more to make us question our relationship with you and what you are hoping to achieve with the comments than anything else.
I’m not saying that you need to tiptoe around us, or me in particular, but I (and other WLS patients I’ve seen talking about it) feel like there is something about us that makes people think they can just say and do anything without thinking or using even a little common sense and discretion.
What I mean is, if your sister or friend had breast cancer, would you tell her about the death rate of her surgery to have her breast removed? Would you tell her about your friend’s mother who died of breast cancer or had the cancer return five years later? Would you tell her that it will look weird having only one breast or sit her down and talk to her about plastic surgery before she’s even had the breast removed or gotten through her treatments?
No, you wouldn’t, unless you were a complete asshole.
So why would someone do the same type of things with a WLS patient? Ok, so WLS and breast cancer are not the same thing… but in many cases WLS can also be a life saving surgery for that person and in ALL cases surgery and massive life changes are scary enough without friends and family compounding it.
Just something to think about, I realize it’s gotten a little ranty but this is the section where I talk about what has been taking place with me emotionally and this has been a part of it… dealing with people and their comments. It is also something I’ve spoken with my clinic therapist about and I know that to some degree all WLS have the same issue. The only answer is to create distance between some friends/family and spend time with those who are truly supportive, or speak up and create boundaries… which I’m not so great at. I don’t express when I am hurt very well, it always comes across like I’m angry, then people get defensive and then it goes tits up. So I’ve been opting for the safe distance, at least for a little while. Thankfully the majority of the people in my life have been amazing and the issues I am having with a few people, like with everything else, is nothing major compared to the heaping loads of love and support I’ve gotten from everyone else.
Other than that one day, dealing with people’s views and comments and the minor stuff like the hair loss, the flu and having that bit of food stuck, mentally things have been getting better and better. I’m happier, I feel like I’m slowly starting to become more outgoing and still being free from the hunger, cravings and food issues is giving me a chance to really think about other things I want to change about myself and my life… and that’s a really good thing.
The Long and Short of it All
Things are good, really good… GREAT even! I almost don’t want to talk about the bad things that are happening because I know that when it comes to Weight Loss Surgery some people love to cling to the negative. I can write 100 happy, exciting and wonderful things here but there are some people who will walk away talking only about my hair loss or other, more negative things that are taking place. I really can’t stress enough how incredible this has all been for me so far. Not just the surgery, but the entire weight loss process over all. Losing 100 lbs has made such a big difference for me and I cannot even fathom what it will be like with 20 lbs more gone, or 40 lbs or 50 lbs. Can it really keep getting even better than this? It’s hard to imagine but I cannot wait to experience it finally. I can’t wait to be under 200 lbs for the first time since I was in my early teens. It is all just so exciting and new…
Now for the bit you’ve probably scrolled past all my blabber to find…
The Weight Loss
This month was a tough one for me in regards to my weight loss. As I mentioned earlier I had a full three weeks without any loss at all and it’s only been the last few days that it started moving again. I buggered everything up by not doing my 4 month update stuff on the 18th as it’s now 4.5 months and technically the bulk of the weight lost since my 3 month update should actually count towards my 5 month update. Oh I’m so confused now. Do I do my 5 month update on the 18th or do I push it now and do it a month from now. I’m feeling a little twitchy now because things aren’t falling in a straight line! haha
Anyway, here are the photos and data!!
I forgot to take a close up face shot this time so I’ll use one from the other day that I posted on Facebook and people seemed to like. It’s the most recent one I have.
Ok, well that’s all for now! I’ll have my 5 month up date on June 18th, or ummm, my 5.5 month update on July 3rd… oh hell, I really need to learn to do things on time!