My Story- Well...
My story, I imagine, has elements similar to many of yours. I was a chunky kid. My nick-name in grade school was Big Butt Bonnie. In fact, I remember my mother calling out the door one day as I was walking to school to walk straight, and not stick my bottom out. I had no idea what she was talking about. Looking back, my relationship with food was weird from early on. Sent to the store for something, I would spend the change on junk food and on the way home, eat it as fast as I could (I'm talking about massive amounts-just stuffing it in so no one would know). Food was something to be consumed in quantity-being totally filled up made me feel safe and comfortable somehow.
My mother, bless her heart, was heavy and didn't want us girls to be that way. She tried her best, but I don't think she had any idea - we learned from what she did, herself- not what she said. I remember her putting me on the scales in the 6th grade. I weighed 135, and she said, "Well, ok, just don't gain any more weight, and when you are 18 you will be just right." OH, my. Obviously, that was a battle plan that didn't work.
By the time I graduated high school, I weighed 225. I already had exposure to TOPS and diet pills and yo-yo dieting- loose some, gain more. My dad (his way of solving the problem) tied my weight to my self worth, and for years (and, I imagine I still deal with it to this day- work I have yet to completely resolve) I felt like a neuter, certainly not a woman. My gender and whether I was good enough or not was tied up in my weight. Enough said.
I can't count the number of ways I tried to deal (or not deal) with my weight over the next 10 years- diet, exercise, diet pills -legit or otherwise- When I was 28 I lost down to 150, and thought I had it made. Fast living and crazy relationships only take a person so far. By the time I was 30 the weight monkey was creeping up on my back again...
Just before the weight came piling on again, I married, had two lovely children, a great husband, a career (life should be good, eh? and lived much of my life throwing each day away. Id wake up each morning and wonder why I wasn't happy and , thinking that maybe the next day my life would be together, and so then throw that day away in hopes that the next day would be different. (ie- I would be thin and then deserving of that life and so then could live it) It never was. The problem was that I didn't do anything to make that happen. I was terribly unhappy and dealt with the situation by playing the dissappearing act (isolating and sleeping and eating).
Well, years went on (about 28 of them) and my weight fluctuated between 250 and 345- the higher end the last 3 years- me still waiting for life to begin. Hell, I'd been living my life all this time and not even counting it I tried lots of things- OA, Medifast, more diet pills, the same-ol same-ol. Besides the weight I also added some serious health issues- diabetes, high blood pressure, cholesterol, triglycerides, and back and joint problems. The toll on my relationship with my loving husband (who remained loyal and loving all through my "absentee" period) is just too painful to think about right now.
In June, 2011 I had a hysterectomy and they found some cancer. ( I had had a pap and pelvic only weeks before that came out normal- go figure! ) The routine operation turned out very difficult because of my great weight- things did not go well, and the surgeon said as much. I thank God that he did, BECAUSE, FOR ONCE, I HEARD IT--THE MESSAGE-- what I was doing to ME--how I was setting up a situation where I wasn't GOING TO HAVE TO WAIT TILL MY LIFE WAS RIGHT TO LIVE MY LIFE, BECAUSE, SOON I WASN'T GOING TO HAVE A LIFE.
Determined, I started eating right, exercising, writing down everything that went into my mouth, and working on my heart, soul, mind thing--my relationship with God. I began to understand that the decision was mine to make every day and that only when I decided to participate in my recovery, God's power and help were available.
Well, my good intentions lasted from July to January 2012. I had lost about 85 lbs, and (go figure--) the old patterns returned and the weight started coming back on. By May, I had regained 40+, but this time, instead of slipping into oblivion for who knows how long, I said " NO MORE"- and seriously started the process towards WLS. My thinking was this- maybe I would be approved and maybe I would not. But until I knew, I was going to practice as if. I'm glad it took a while for it all to happen. I needed time to practice patience, self control, and get healthy enough for the surgery. I credit the "homework" I did for the relatively easy recovery after the surgery
My surgery was approved for December 12th, 2012, and between July and December, I lost the 40 plus another 25. Surgery is my way of saying that the door is now shut- no going back. I'm going to let my sleeve help me know when some is enough. I don't want to live that black hole that was my life anymore. God help me help myself.