June 20, 2020, marks a VERY special day for me. Two years ago, I hopped on a plane, flew into San Diego, California, so I could be driven across the border into Tijuana, Mexico; then dropped off at a hospital for a surgery I hoped would change my life.
NEVER, did I think I’d do this.
I was desperate to change my life so I could actually LIVE A LIFE WORTH LIVING.
My journey and decision started before this day two years ago. At the beginning of May 2018, my friend started a conversation with me about her mixed emotions and decision that was weighing on her, a decision about changing her life.
She was thinking about traveling to Mexico for weight loss surgery.
She always appeared to be so confident. I had no idea what she was thinking or how she was feeling about herself, her weight. Her weight didn’t bother me. I didn’t see it. I saw her, her kindness, her willingness to lift up others even when they were cruel to her, she rose above it.
We talked about a lot of things. All of the “what ifs?” All of the “what are people going to say?” “is it going to work?” “will it last?” “will I be safe down there?” “Is this crazy?” And so much more.
We talked about all of these things over a few hours. I let her know that ultimately the choice was hers and I wasn’t going to judge her. I’d support her decision. Secretly, I had been struggling with what to do about my own weight issues. I had a referral sitting on my desks from months before this conversation. My doctor was guiding me along my own path.
After she told me more, I went and I searched out the doctor she told me about and his clinic. I join his Barfbook group and one more I’m no longer in.
I looked at his website.
I read the reviews.
I looked at the people’s photos.
Before and Afters.
I read through every single post in the group, in the beginning.
I’ll be honest, even though I did all of those things, I still barely put any time or thought into MY decision to fill out my application and set up my appointment with the doctor. At the appointment, he would tell me what and how to proceed, which surgery would be most beneficial to my needs.
I came back to that conversation with my friend and told her “I’m in. I filled out my paperwork. When are we going? I want to go ASAP.”
My life was completely miserable.
I didn’t like to do anything.
I had no motivation.
I had zero energy.
No zest for life.
But I sure did put on my “happy face” for everyone.
I was ready. I had heartburn so bad. I got heartburn from smelling a hot sauce jar open from across the room. Tomatoes kept me reeling in pain if I ate them too close to bedtime. I had Omeprazole stashed all over the house, my car, and always in my purse.
To this day, I leave those packages of heartburn relief where I find them as a reminder of NEVER wanting to go back to that place. That awful, miserable body I lived in for most of my adult life.
I tried many different weight loss plans, diets, and exercise routines but eventually, the weight always came back. That was why I wondered if this gastric bypass surgery would work, would it last for me.
I could not stand living like that anymore. I needed to do something and I needed to do it fast. I could’ve lost the weight on my own again, but it would have taken me much, much longer. I probably would have given up before I even got started. In my head, I think about what I went through to get to where I am now. I don’t want to ever go through any of it ever again.
My original goal weight was 185 pounds, I think.
Because I didn’t think I deserved to weigh any less than that.
I didn’t think I deserved more happiness.
I didn’t think I deserved to be one of those “skinny girls”.
Because people talk about how having weight loss surgery is cheating at weight loss.
Those people don’t know what you are going through. I’ll tell you what, it sure didn’t feel like cheating. You know what feels like cheating, eating a brownie when I know I should have chosen a green veggie instead. That feels like cheating. Sure, I cheat that way here and there but overall I have committed to my new, improved life.
I didn’t do what most of the other people do after gastric bypass surgery. Most of them, in my research, start exercising like crazy and eating healthy, etc. But I didn’t do that. I chose to focus on my FOOD and learning how to cope with my changes. I was more active but I didn’t focus on exercise until this year, 2020, almost two years post-operation. I wanted to make sure I could stick to ONE THING and make that a habit first.
Now I am on a journey to fill my loose skin with muscle to minimize the need for skin removal surgery.
I was on a great run and then the coronavirus shut down my gym.
Thankfully, my gym is open again.
I’m back on my mission.
I’m working on a Body Building plan that is pretty intense. I can RUN on the treadmill now. I never did that before; not even when I was on the swim team or other sports in school.
It all comes down to mind over matter.
If you think you can, you can!
If you think you can’t, you can’t.
It was a rollercoaster ride. It still is.
Be kind to yourself.
If you have a bad day, do better the next day or even the next choice.
Life is an endless string of choices.
Today, I weighed in at 153.9 pounds. My new goal is (according to my Body Building plan) 126 pounds of lean muscle.
I do not know if I’ll hit that number. But this is what I do know, I’m going to stay focused on eating right, drinking right, and exercising all while being kind to myself, especially on the hard days.
I will still enjoy some of my vices along the way, ya know like Vodka drinks here and there. Maybe a few goldfish crackers…
I am grateful for my friend and her conversation with me about her questions to me. More than she will ever know. I am grateful for finding a place that I could go to and return home from, safe and healthy without complications.
Because I know some of you will ask:
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The Perfectly Flawed Badass Fashion Freak
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