Tuesday, April 2, 2013

The Good Stuff

So, I realized I'm keeping a score.  A record of my weight loss only in numbers.  I'm not recognizing the changes that are already demonstrating how much better my life is getting.

That's probably because I'm so focused on the scale to avoid the stuff that scares the bejeebers out of me.  You know, the stuff I'm afraid will come back...either watching the number on the scale creep back up, OR, having to face whatever demons my weight has been shielding me from all this time.

So let's start with awesome stuff.  After all, this is a blog titled Making Lemonade, is it not?

It's stuff that hits you out of the blue, but it seems so ridiculously small, you forget how huge it is.

I crossed both my legs the other day to put my socks on.  Seems ludicrous to call out here, but if I told you I hadn't been able to do that in 3 years, you would see just how big a life change that actually is.  Crazy isn't it?  My right knee has been so inflamed and arthritic that in order to put my socks on every single day, I had to put my knee up on the bed and bend the leg so that I could reach my foot.  The other day, I crossed them without even thinking...It wasn't until I had finished putting on the sock that I realized I wasn't even moving my body the same way and caught on to the change.

I walked downstairs this morning without the assistance of the handrail or leaning against the wall.  Again, it might seem like this is silly to be mentioning, but when you hurt as much as I have for the last three years, walking down a flight of stairs first thing in the morning without assistance was unheard of.  Every muscle in my body ached from the strain of carrying around the extra padding.  My body was swollen so much that I feared the smallest prick of my skin might result in a flood.  Walking down the stairs without wincing at every step and holding onto the railing for dear life is HUGE.

I picked up my 27 lb child and carried her from her bed, down the hall and to the bathroom, without even breathing heavy...this is because I've finally lost more than she weighs, and that means I'm not carrying twice her weight.  Let me tell you how monumental this is.  For two years after she was born I dealt with crippling, debilitating back pain that was a side effect of the spinal block I got to have my c-section.  Combined with my weight issues, there were days when I could barely walk, stand up, sit up...and it took the power of Christ to move my body in the ways I needed to move to look after my toddler.  Stifling back the tears was a daily challenge and forced me to use whatever I could to skirt by the easiest ways possible.  I used an ottoman in front of the sofa to change her diapers rather than get on a floor or take her up to her change table.  We put a double bed in her room so that I could stop rocking her to sleep and instead snuggle her in bed because lifting her up out of the rocking chair and transferring her to her toddler bed was too painful for me.  I think this is the first time I have lifted her and carried her any distance without feeling pain, in her entire life.  This is the hugest possible improvement I could have imagined.

My family has been generally healthy (not hit with plague after plague) for 4 weeks.  This is a first in over a year.

In total (though a few of these are still due to the flu), I've lost 32 lbs.

So here's what I'm deathly afraid of.  I don't really know why I'm so fat in the first place.  I know I'm an emotional eater, but the only traumatic situations I can link any of it to, is the loss of my father at 21, and random pressures and comments people made while I was growing up that they thought would help me manage a healthy weight, but which actually created new stressors.  And I'm afraid that when I lose this extra shield I've been building, that I will discover there was something more to it.  I eat when I am stressed or fearful of saying the wrong thing at the wrong time to the wrong person.  I eat when I'm happy and want to celebrate.  I use food to reward myself, and I can already feel the pangs of wanting to reward my 32 lb loss with some Easter chocolate.  I worry that I won't know how to cope without food or cigarettes (used to be part of the coping mechanism before I quit in 2007).  I worry that my brain has blocked out something from my memory that would cause me to use weight as my protector.  I worry that when I find out who lies beneath all this padding that I'll want something different out of my life, that I won't be simply satisfied with what I have.  I worry.  Full stop.

Of course there's no point in worrying until there's reason too.  Right now, I'm really quite happy that clothes are fitting me better and starting to feel big.  I'm overjoyed that I'm able to do the things I wrote about first in this post.  I'll take these wins and keep moving forward for now.  Will continue to wait for that other shoe to drop, and will work through it when it does...whatever it takes.

The freak show fat lady will never be me again.

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