Sunday, September 14, 2008

hard questions & harder answers

i saw my grandma today for the first time since, um, sometime in july. the last time i saw her was at a family potluck at my aunt's house, so it's been a good month & a half to two months. she couldn't believe how much weight i've lost. in the beginning after my surgery that was a really good thing, a thrill, when people would tell me how much weight i've lost. now it's a mixed bag. i looked at my mom when my grandma commented on how skinny i'm getting. her face reflected what i was feeling. it was meant as a compliment, & my grandma doesn't know about what i've been struggling with lately, so i can't fault her for it, but even though the comment on my weight was meant as a compliment, it makes me uncomfortable now when people mention it. but i still smile & take it as a good comment.

my grandma asked me when i'd stop losing weight. i honestly don't know so i told her my weight would probably level out very soon. she also asked me what would happen if i didn't stop losing weight. & i really don't know. i know that there are some people, not many at all, but a few, that after bariatric surgery can't stop losing weight & have to be medically managed so they don't get sick. i think it's still too early to determine if that's going to be the case with me. what i do know is that there are certain areas of my body that are getting much too small.

the other day E & i were curled up talking at my apartment and he asked me how much i weighed, so i told him about 165, which was my weight that morning. he also asked me if i've been exercising & i admitted i haven't been (this is something i really miss & i want to get back to). & then he told me he's worried about me, that i'm getting too thin & he can feel my bones when he holds me. he said he thinks i'm losing muscle & he's worried about me. i know it was really tough for him to tell me that, & i'm glad he did, but it's still hard. i look in the mirror & my collarbones stick out, my shoulder blades stick out. no one else sees it, but my ribs are pretty visible under my skin & i can't sit on a hard surface for too long or it's really painful for me.

i was talking to this guys at work, nelson, who is a certified personal trainer & was working with me & some of the other QAs. his wife had bariatric surgery & he asks me how i'm doing every time i see him. i told him about the eating problems & some of the other stuff & he said it sounds like i'm losing muscle, the same thing that E said. the only way for me to recover that is to start working out again, but i'm also almost scared to do that because if i don't get enough calories in, & especially enough protein in, i'm just going to burn more muscle.

as much as i try to get enough food, the right kinds of food, i know that i'm malnourished. i take my vitamins, i'm pretty good about that most of the time, i try to make "good" choices. but it is so fucking hard. i still can't always digest everything well, or i'll eat something & it'll make me sick, or i'll eat something & i have to stop after two or three bites because if i put one more morsel in my mouth i'll spit everything up. i really do kinda wish i could just have milk & not deal with food.

my mom & i were talking about the emily program & i told her that even though i didn't want to admit i needed help i'm glad i did it now instead of waiting until december. i also told her that i felt like if i had waited until after i saw christine in december that i may have been sick enough to have to go to an inpatient program. & then my mom said what i had been thinking, but didn't want to say aloud because i didn't want to be overly melodramatic. she said she didn't think i would've been able to make it to december.

i was at ragstock with steph thursday night getting some new clothes. while in the dressing room i had a really scary moment. i looked in the mirror & i didn't recognize myself. my face & neck & shoulders all looked too thin. & then in the same moment i told myself that i needed to lose weight that i was really too big, that my thighs, tummy, calves, & upper arms were just unacceptable. it scared me. no one would argue that i do have those flabby parts, but i do think there are several people who would argue that i really don't need to lose anymore weight.

my grandma asked me if i would be ok not losing anymore weight. my honest reaction to that is no. i want to be under 150. i need to get as far away from 200lbs as possible. i don't want to be overweight, even by a little. in order for my bmi to be in the "normal" range i need to be 145 or less, so i still have twenty pounds to lose. when i say things like that my mom gets really mad & talks about the "damn unreasonable insurance charts." & maybe she's right. maybe losing that much more is unreasonable, but maybe not.

i've been talking about this with my close friends, my mom, & E, but it's still hard at times. it kind of seems like every day is a bit more of a struggle. i was at my parents' house tonight & i got so sick that i passed out for a couple of hours. they tried waking me up & i just couldn't wake up. i would come to just long enough to mutter a couple of words & then i was out again. maybe it was exhaustion, maybe it was worry, maybe it was more than that, i don't know. but it scared me, & it really scared my parents. they really didn't want me to even leave their house, but i had to get home to play with the fuzzies. i couldn't let my kids get cage crazy, they need their run time & their playtime with me...they're very social.

april was telling me that dave, her fiance, can't understand how i can deal with having five ferrets in addition to my two rats when i have so much else going on in my life. & i admit it seems like there is something insane about taking on that many fuzzies, especially when they need so much love, care, & attention. but they really are saving me in a way. i love my furry little ankle biters (very true in the case of podo & slightly true with cass & doodle). they keep me balanced. they keep me from overworking. my little guys love me completely & unconditionally & depend on me 100%....& that makes me work even harder to try to be healthy. my family & E support me & it's not like i discount all their love for me. & i care so much about them that i am working towards getting better for me & for them. but there's something else about having my kids that helps me out. maybe it's that while they look at me with concern in their little faces, mostly they just look at me with adoration & all they want is to play. there's something very relaxing about that.

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