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@CurvyJem 34188 wrote:
Thanks for coming back to me – and your kind and supportive words!
I’m trying to get as prepared as possible for my surgery, but somehow I just don’t think I’ll fully understand it all until it happens.
I have read the recommended – “The Emotional First Aid Kit: A Practical Guide to Bariatric Surgery” that was recommended to me and it made me realise I haven’t thought through the lifelong implications fully. I have only really thought about losing weight, not actually maintaining it for the rest of my life.
Any tips or thoughts on this would also come in handy – do you follow the recommended 3 – 5 exercise sessions per week?
You are absolutely right to raise the question about weight maintenance as I personally think it’s the hardest part of the whole procedure!
Most of us need this surgery because we have used food as a ‘comfort’. It feels like we have to make the rest of the journey in life without the help of our best friend. It’s the biggest lie we have ever told ourselves.
Comfort eating (head hunger) is the thing that got (most of) us to the point of needing major surgery. For people like me, it was a life saving surgery. Turning to food for comfort will not longer be an option so what do we have? Well, there is saving lots of money, buying new clothes, saving up all the money and going on an adventure (now that we have the energy to do it) or buying a new car, taking more holidays, going to the theatre/cinema without fear of not fitting in the seats, running in the park with your children/grandchildren, walking your dog for miles….the list is endless. But the most important thing to remember, is that food is NOT your friend if it tries to make you unhappy, unhealthy or marginalised in any way.
Good, healthy food in moderation will always be good for you as will the odd treat. Finding a new substitute for food (to make you feel good) is hard. I always say it is like letting a tiger out of it’s cage three times a day and trying not to let it bite you! We HAVE to eat. We do not have to smoke, drink, gambol or do drugs, yet food addiction is every bit as real as all the others in my humble opinion.
So, what I am trying to say is that you are right to be nervous about having to give up the thing you thought was your best friend in times of emotional stress. BUT, try focusing on and remembering instead, on how utterly miserable you feel after a food binge. That sinking feeling that you have let down again your body, yourself, your health, your friends and family and everyone who had tried to help you. It sucks beyond the telling of it doesn’t it? I felt that so many times that I could fill this entire forum with posts about it. I lost the same three stone ten times over and I know some of you have done the same.
Weight loss surgery is a tool. You have to learn fast and master it to get the very best out of it. It doesn’t lose the weight for you – you have to work at it – forever. However, the benefits are so absolutely brilliant that, at some point, you will realise that you have finally won the war instead of just another battle.
Trust your surgeon and team, your surgery, and yourself (that’s the hardest person to trust in my opinion!) and be as focused as a barn owl who has spotted a rat half a mile away. Do this for yourself. Make a better life for yourself. Be kind to yourself. It’s not being selfish at all and you deserve it.
Sorry for the ridiculously long reply but I have been there and I was just as worried as you are now so I want you to know that when things get tough (they will) we will all be here to help and support you. There are some amazingly wise people on this forum who check in regularly to see if anyone needs help – that’s why it’s so popular. None of us is alone anymore. We can converse with like minded people who will never judge us.
Jenny Radcliffe’s book ‘Cut Down to Size’ is recommended by Chris Pring and is worth a read. Do your research and be as informed as you possibly can. Surprises are not always good ones so be like a Boy Scout – prepared!
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