Thursday, November 29, 2007

My Annual Review...An "A-ha" Moment

I just had my annual review at work and I don't know whether to laugh or cry just let this headache that is in my brain take over. I have been with my current company for 3.5 years. Until probably the past 7 months, it was a pretty hellish existence here. My former boss, for whatever reason, didn't seem to like me much. I thought I was paranoid for a long time. When I would ask him for feedback on what the issue was, he would actually yell at me and reduce me to tears (much to my own dismay). He left last December, and a senior QA engineer stepped up to be our manager. He stayed until May and then left for another opportunity. That's when my current boss took over as our manager.

My current boss has been here for many years but in a different role. The first thing he did today when we sat down to go over my review was ask me what the story was the past several years because my reviews from past years didn't at all reflect my work, my work ethic, who I am from what he has seen and he literally thought he was looking at the wrong review. He asked if I had become a completely different person in the past 6 months. In some ways I have, but not with regards to my work. So he knew there must be some kind of history there and wanted to ask me about it. I had to ask him first to confirm for me that what he was saying is that he is happy with my work, and not that my work quality is less than what he has read about in the past. He was astonished I even needed to ask.

Suffice it to say that basically, he validated my suspicions of my prior boss. It is apparent that not only did my prior boss not speak well of my skill or dedication, but that he went so far as to just about malign me to other departments in the organization. I thanked my current boss for having an open mind before forming his opinion of me and my work, and giving me the opportunity to show him who I am and what I am capable of.

So yes, this is all good...wonderful in fact. But it is seriously with tears in my eyes and my head pounding at how much shit I have dealt with in the past 3 years here that I think about all the validation he gave me.

Have you ever had those "a-ha" moments when you realize just how crappy you've allowed yourself to be treated, in so many ways, and while you're glad that you're not allowing it anymore, it breaks your heart that you thought so little of yourself for so long? That's what's going through my head right now. And I don’t know if the treatment I received before was due to being obese, but it has definitely crossed my mind.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Fear of Intimacy

Several years ago I came to the realization that I had some serious fears of intimacy. I've done a lot of work on those, I think, in therapy…at least as much work as I can without a partner. Someday, I will have a partner who is kind and understanding and I will work through that stuff that can only really be worked out through being in a relationship. But, because of that fear, it was so much easier to be fat and as such, never have anyone (i.e., men) pay me any attention. It was safer to just hide out under my fat. And I struggle with not hiding behind that fat anymore...I still don't really get much male attention so it hasn't become an issue as yet. But, I get plenty of female compliments and such...and plenty of male compliments that aren't flirtation...and I just graciously say thank you and do my best to accept and internalize it. We've worked damn hard to get hard as it is sometimes to know we're being noticed, looked at, paid attention to, I think the more we accept it graciously the more used to it we become and the less foreign it feels. That's my theory and I'm sticking to it.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Thanksgiving Pies...Trouble

I have yet to do something that really pushed the limits to see if I dump, except for Thanksgiving day. I had a sliver of pumpkin pie, and then a slightly larger piece of apple pie. I can't say I dumped exactly, but I felt awful. I was queasy for a good 2.5 hours and felt awful, bloated, and was horribly gassy the rest of the evening. So I’m still not sure if I dump or not, but I'm not really all that tempted to find out right now after how icky I felt just after the pie.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Almost 100 lbs. Lost!

Down to 167 lbs. Almost 100 lbs. lost since my initial consult with Dr. B.

What would have been my mom’s 66th birthday just recently passed. It's only her second birthday since she died. I didn't talk to my brother or sister-in-law on her birthday, but I did remind my son that it would have been her birthday. Otherwise, no one mentioned it, which made me kind of sad. Today, I got an email from my mom's best friend from high school saying that she was thinking about us, knew it was mom's birthday this week, and wondered how we are doing. I have finally lost enough weight (and pudginess in my fingers) to be able to wear a ring that she gave me for my birthday several years ago. So now whenever I look at the ring, I think of her and it makes me smile. And today I thought about how proud she would be, and happy for me, that my WLS journey is going as well as it is. I just wanted to share my thoughts since most everyone else in my life kept the day pretty quiet yesterday.

Should we talk about sex? Yes, since surgery my sex drive has definitely been on the rise. But, alas, I do not have a significant other. Enter Friends With Benefits (FWBs). I was explaining this to someone else today...I am monogamous even in my FWBs relationships...for me, I have to have an emotional connection to feel comfortable enough to really enjoy sex...and then, all is good. I seem to be past the days where I could just hook up with someone. I used to be able to...but to be honest, I have found sex to be so much better when I'm comfortable and really care about the person. Even if it's not someone I'm dating but someone who is "just" a FWB, I have an emotional attachment to that person. It just works better for me that way. I know, I probably sound like a freak. Can't just hook up...been there and done that and I think hurt my heart one too many times because even despite my best efforts to remain somewhat emotionally detached, I always end up getting emotionally attached. So, now I just don't sleep with someone unless I have some emotional attachment and deep affection for him to begin with. There is only one person who has been an FWB for me in the past 4.5 years. One. Yup, that makes it monogamous for me.

With that said, I still have growing concerns about actually dating someone and the loose skin I’m beginning to notice on my belly and thighs and breasts. It’s hard for me to tell how much of my belly skin is the way it is because I was heavy and have lost weight, and how much is due to having had a baby. I have never been think post-partum, so I never knew what my belly looked like. I’ve seen way worse, but I’ve also seen better. As for the beautifully full round breasts I used to have? Well, to steal someone else’s phrase, they now look more like two lemons in tube socks. They are just not attractive now that they’re all deflated. Oh well…I’ll deal with it to feel better, have the energy I have…I’ll focus on my increased enthusiasm and activity level when the time comes instead of loose skin, and hopefully so will any partner I have.

The past few weeks I have been feeling extreme hunger within maybe half an hour to an hour after meals. I don't feel hungry immediately after eating, but it doesn't take long before I am wanting to eat again. I'm trying to determine if it’s genuine hunger or head hunger, though I and haven't caved to any cravings even when they are there. I just keep telling myself that if I start snacking, grazing, reintroducing refined carbs now, before I'm even at goal, my weight loss will be over for me, and I cannot go there. My son's Halloween candy is still beckoning me though I haven't caved.

Monday, November 12, 2007


My son and I made cupcakes last night...he chose to make vanilla cupcakes with chocolate frosting...the only thing I would have liked better is if they were with vanilla frosting. Every time I smell them, it is so hard to walk away from them. And he can't get them out of the container it's this huge waft of wonderful smell every time he gets one. *sigh* I will be SOOO glad when PMS is over this month. I am thoroughly unconvinced that I will survive it this month unscathed.

Friday, November 9, 2007

4 Months Post-op

I’m 4 months post-op today. I have so many things to be thankful for...and many of them are really just about my life in general.

First, I am thankful for my little boy, who is the absolute light of my life and gives me great reason to want to be the best human being I can be. He has been my teacher with regards to unconditional love, joy, compassion and sensitivity. He is the absolute best thing to ever come into my life. Without him, I probably would not have cared enough about myself or my life to have undertaken this surgery that is changing my life so much. It is because I wanted to make sure I would be around for him as he grows up, and it is because I want to enjoy my time with him, that I considered the risks of surgery worth taking.

I am thankful for the time I had with my mother...and in a strange way, as much as I miss her, and this will sound very strange, I am grateful for the events which led up to my surgery...that is, she passed away very unexpectedly (which I am NOT thankful for)...but the shock of it, the loss of my mother at age 38 after losing my father when I was 20, well, made me realize that I could not and would not continue living my life as I had. I needed to make some big changes and her death was the impetus for many of those changes.

I am grateful for my wonderful friends who have supported me throughout this journey so far, who may not understand everything I am going through, but who are there nonetheless, to listen, to love, to lend a helping hand when I need it. We don't get to pick our families...but we do get to pick our friends and I have some of the greatest on this Earth, I have no doubt.

I am grateful for an incredibly competent and compassionate weight loss surgery team for their physical and emotional care with me. My 4 month labs are back and everything looks great (except my B-12 is actually high, so we'll have to figure out how much to cut back on my B-12 sublingual). I am so grateful that I have so many wonderful years ahead of me and that I now have the hope that I will find love and companionship throughout my life.

I am grateful for ObesityHelp and the people I am getting to know there who have really become much like extended family. The support I have gotten there is tremendous and the importance of which cannot be overstated, ever.