I woke up this morning and somehow, the reality hit me right in the face. As I sat on the edge of my bed, about to get up, I looked across the room at the mirrored closet doors... the ones I used to take my "progress pictures" in... and saw someone I have not seen in years. I don't know why it is but when I lost the weight and weighed 175 pounds I would look in the mirror and see myself as still severely obese... well over 200. Then over time as I regained the weight I stopped seeing that and started seeing myself as 190 or so in the mirror. It's like my brain has some kind of time delay of MONTHS before I see myself at the weight I really am. And for the past few months I've seen myself at, oh, maybe 210, 215 which is what I weighed for most of 2012 and 2013. But I don't weigh 210, or 215. I weigh more than that. And this morning for some reason I got a glimpse of what I *really* look like, and I was shocked. And sad. And now I am upset. And it sounds so ridiculous since I *just* posted about this being a year of healing for me. And how much better my eating has been this month. And how I started swimming and walking again for exercise.
And all of that is true... it *has* been a healing year for me in a lot of ways, but I think I have been in some kind of denial about my weight. I have tried to focus on health. I have worked on the emotional components. I got an ED counselor, I have a good support group, I am addressing the physical and mental aspects. But the weight... oh my gosh, the weight, this morning it was so glaringly obvious it is out of control. How can I look like that... again? After all the work I did to lose it, how? How.
I freaking weigh 240 pounds.
The advice, the counsel from the ED specialist to "stay off the scale for awhile" and "try to eat things you like in moderation," to normalize food... to go ahead and have the gluten free cookies in small amounts, to feel okay about eating what I like... I am going to need to talk to her about this. I am not blaming her, I am blaming me. I've stayed off the scale... but this morning after seeing what I saw in the mirror I HAD to get on the scale, because how I look was not registering in my brain. And when I saw 240 my jaw just dropped. That is totally Hellish Nightmare weight. That is 5 pounds away from being morbidly obese. My BMI is one point away from Morbid Obesity. I cannot believe it.
I keep thinking I don't know how this is happening. I don't want it to be true. I saw the slow creep: 226 pounds on September 1, then 229 on the 5th when I got sick, then 232 pounds on October 16th... the last time I got on the scale. That was a month ago and now I am 8 pounds higher and at this rate... oh my gosh, I can't even deal with it.
I should have taken a hint when I got out my winter coat this month and it didn't fit. I've been wearing it anyway with my arms stuffed like sausages into the sleeves so tightly that they can hardly bend, and the front hanging open because it is too small to close around the front of me. I should have gotten a clue when I dug out the long jeans I wore last winter and they are so tight I have to unsnap them and wear a sweater over them so people can't see they aren't buttoned. I should have known... I must have known but let myself be in denial because it just couldn't be. Morbid obesity. Technically 5 pounds away, but in reality it's no different now, and I may as well be there.
I did notice it hurts to walk. I did notice it takes such an effort to heave myself up out of bed or from a chair, and that everything takes longer and I am worn out faster. I did notice that there are fat rolls where there weren't before, and that my ankles look terribly swollen, and that I am sweating and breathing hard 5 minutes into raking leaves or mopping the floor. I did notice that instead of bounding up the stairs with a 30-pound bag of dog food like I used to do, it almost killed me heaving that thing up half a flight, and my knees almost buckled under the weight. Carrying that bag reminded me of how I felt when I started this blog... 278 pounds. It felt the same, except back then, I wasn't carrying any dog food.
Look, it is hard for me to post this. It is tough to admit this. And frankly I don't have an answer or a solution and I am terrified that I will just keep gaining. I have to believe there are many, so many others out there like me who KNOW about all the different diets, lifestyle changes, things people do to lose weight but for some reason can't seem to make it stick. I think it is all the more painful for those who, like me, DID lose 100+ pounds, DID get that taste of freedom and feeling of success and the wonder of a life unfettered by morbid obesity... but then slid back to the hellish nightmare. Like I have. If there was an answer to fix this for everyone we'd all stay thin. I am super happy for the people who've lost and kept it off. I really am. I also have utmost compassion for those who have never been able to lose and get to a healthy BMI... who've never even gotten a taste of that freedom. Believe me, and read it on my blog too... when I was down 100 pounds I never, NEVER thought I could regain it. NEVER. There was NO WAY I would let that happen. But it happened, and now I have to deal with this.
I can only do what I know, and that's eat more produce, eat less junk, go back to daily weighing, go back to seeing gluten-free cookies as a NOT-okay food for me to eat. Because all I can figure is the processed junk is the culprit in the gain. I felt great and was losing weight on AIP, and the only thing different now is adding in moderate amounts of processed stuff, dairy, and gluten free grains. So I am taking them back out and see how this week goes before changing anything else. Keep swimming, keep walking, keep trying. And keep praying things turn back around because I don't want to be miserable and morbidly obese.
I am 38 years old, female, a degree-holding stay-at-home-mom, and I weigh 278 pounds. I have been obese for ten years now. Time to get out of this fat prison I have made for myself.
--This is the original introduction I wrote when I first started this blog in 2007. I leave it as a reminder to myself of where I came from. Currently, I am 46 years old and weigh significantly less...see the blog for details. I lost 103 pounds, then had a partial regain, and am once again working at weight loss and better health.
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