When I first had weight loss surgery I had a lap band. I can hear it right now, “why the heck did you do that Tash?” Well back in the day, the lap band was “the in thing”. It was going to fix my chubbiness and I was going to be able to finally be the healthy person that I had dreamed about being. In hindsight I rate that decision as one of THE worst decisions of my life. The lap band nearly killed me a couple of times. I had a total gut obstruction – repeat surgeries and complication after complication with it. After my original surgeon refused to remove it I was left wondering what was going to become of me. Thankfully my Gyne at the time took pity on me and he helped me to find a new surgeon who did remove the cursed thing. I feel sick that they are still promoted and that lap band is still performed 😦 … Anyway once that was done I swore off weight loss surgery – FOREVER! I had little children and I decided that I would rather be fat than dead. I had endured MONTHS of complications and hospitalisations and I didn’t want that for my kids, or Steve or my extended family anymore. I wanted my life back, so I decided to just get myself together and it would all be okay.
Fast forward 8 years or so and I was seriously regretting my vow of “NEVER HAVING WEIGHT LOSS SURGERY AGAIN”. I was growing fatter and fatter and had tried everything I knew to try to stop myself from gaining. My weight was tipping the scales up near the 150 kilo mark. Over those 10 years I had gained 70 kilos. I would diet and exercise and lose weight but inevitably the weight would come back – with a vengeance, and I felt like a failure all over again. I was stuck in the most destructive cycle. I was eating to cover my pain, to cope with shitty trauma and to hide from life.
We all have a tipping point. I have found that when I look back my tipping point was when I didn’t fit into the robes at my graduation ceremony for a course I had completed. My god the humiliation was intense. I was so ashamed of myself and on that night – I broke. The next day we increased our health insurance and started saving for me to have weight loss surgery again.
I had NO idea of the things that would unfold in my life once I had the surgery. I could never have predicted the life circumstances that would happen and the ways that I would change.
What I think I have truly learned is that
1. I did not know what moderation was and I had to learn that after my weight loss surgery.
2. I needed help to process past hurts and trauma to be able to learn better ways to deal with comfort eating – I mean professional help from a psychologist!
3. I would gain so much from the process of shedding the weight but I would also lose some things from my life that I didn’t want to lose. I would also learn what it is to be resilient and move on. Life is full of opportunities to learn, grow and move forward or we can stay, stagnate and become bitter.
4. I would become a passionate advocate for health post weight loss surgery.
5. I would, for the first time since I was a little child, feel like I can be myself and not care one jot what others may think of me because I know who and whose I am. It is one thing to say this but it is another thing entirely to believe it with all that you are.