Sunday, June 9, 2013

Bring Me to Life

I needed to document this. I need something to look back at, to watch myself change and grow through this next year. I've never kept up the blog; call it lack of commitment, lack of motivation, or what you will, but I've never been able to stick to a regular schedule. But everything is about to change. Everything. The entire year has been a whirlwind, just in the last 6 months. I landed a part-time administrative job after spending 5 months broken down from a back injury that I obtained in my short-lived, ill-fated 6 weeks as a hostess in a restaurant - my first job in four years. I couldn't go back to that job after my injury, and the stars lined up that I found myself needed and able to take this new position in an environment where I could actually work without pain. Around a month later, I learned that my insurance covers bariatric surgery. Not like I haven't been in this circus before, and I'm not sure I ever expected it all to work out in to something. Fast forward 6 months - through a trip to new York and Ireland, and coming home to find out we had FINALLY gotten a house, then through all the craziness of actually buying and moving in to that house, and just as we start getting settled, everything falls in to place. The surgery center calls me with a date, and it is less than 2 weeks from the moment I get the call. I had been expecting late July or early August, and I will not lie - I have been completely caught off guard by the emotional turmoil that is involved in the mental and physical preparation for having your anatomy completely re-wired. I have wanted this for years. YEARS. I went through Kaiser's entire program only to not be able to quite meet all of their requirements and to then lose my insurance with them just as I was getting close. This is one of those things - I suppose like motherhood - that I thought I would never happen. But this is the thing that, when it happens, could make everything else happen (like motherhood). This will change my entire life and while that is astoundingly wonderful and exciting, I am terrified. It will bring change to every single aspect of my life. I am well aware how much that change is needed, but change never comes without some degree of fear. I know my health and life as is can not continue as it has or I will be dead by 40. I have worked so hard to change and prepare. I have fallen of the horse but gotten back up every single time. I have lost over 80 pounds on my own, from my peak recorded weight of 369. Recorded. I am confident I weighed more at some point. Many people will ask me why. I don't feel like I should have to answer, but I will. Yes, I could continue as is and slowly lose the rest of my excess weight - but I could also be dead before I reach that goal. Despite medication and hardcore lifestyle and diet changes, my diabetes is still ridiculous. My kidneys are beginning to show signs of early failure because of it, and that is when a person knows that something needs to change. I am doing this surgery to stay alive. Aside from my health, I have a wonderful life - a beautiful house, a great job that I love, and -most importantly- an incredible, astoundingly supportive partner to live it with. I want to be around for as much of it as possible. I want to have children more than anything on the earth and this finally gives us a real shot to not only conceive, but conceive naturally and in a healthier environment, which may ease any pre-disposition our children may have to obesity. I am doing it to save my own life, OUR life, and to make more life together. There are so many good things to come of this. Obviously. But the fear hangs heavy over my head and I find myself so exhausted that all I want to do is crawl in bed and sleep like the dead until the day arrives. some days my willpower is not what I need it to be and I am hideously terrified that it will be my undoing, even after I've gone through everything I'm about to face. I am a foodie at heart. It's part of who I am and a big part of our life. I am not fat because of a love of cheap, fast, gross food or sodas. I love to cook, and we love to experience the places we go by the food. I love making rich sauces and melt-in-your-mouth meats and tender, buttery sides. I love baking and grilling and indulging. I love the silence that fills a room when people are eating my food and so immersed that they can't speak a word. I love the way the perfect meal can roll your eyes back in your head and make eyebrows waggle. These experiences are part of my core and to change the way I will experience those experiences feels like blasphemy. Some day, I will be able to eat extremely small portions of mostly everything I eat now, since I am already a organic/local/healthy food nut. But for the next year, it will all be different and for the millionth time, that is terrifying. 1 week from now my life will change. I will be having an anxiety attack, but at the same time, the quieter parts of me that, over time, will learn to grow louder and stronger will be rejoicing in the life that is to come.