Pride goeth before the fall
Tuesday, November 27, 2007
I got a little cocky last week. It's easy enough to do; I am one of the lucky ones who doesn't have any food sensitivities, who able to eat pretty much anything she wants. Chinese food, chicken, eggs, all dairy something that someone you know wasn't able to eat and I probably can.

But I got cocky last week, and I paid for it. See, I don't dump on sugar the way most people do; I don't get the racing heartbeat or the cramping or the headache or the passing out thing. I've had sugar in bites of dessert since I've started eating regular food; the most that ever happened was a little bit of light-headedness. It was enough to remind me to stop after 3 bites, but not enough to make me really sick. Perfect, right? Instant portion control! Really though, fatty food is what makes me more sick...instant nausea if I eat anything too greasy, to the point where I need to lay down for awhile.

So one Sunday night we went out to Applebee's before heading to the bowling alley, where I ate a very tasty salad filled with chicken and spinach and apples and blueberries and strawberries and blue cheese. And then the three of us (me, my husband and our bowling teammate) decided to each order one of their "shooter" desserts. Figured it would be perfect for someone like me; small, just a few bites of something sweet. I ate about half of it (a chocolate mousse one that was quite tasty), then shoved it away from me.

Ten minutes later, I was in the bathroom. And 10 minutes later I was there again. And when we got to the bowling alley for our league night, I dashed off for the third time. But I wasn't done yet! One more trip, and then I was as empty as I could possibly be. Seriously, it was flashbacks to my first month home...I was actually daydreaming of being constipated by the end of it.

It was a Lesson Learned, I'll tell you what. The dessert followed on the heels of a salad filled with fruit. Fruit which is loaded with natural sugars. That plus the refined sugar in the dessert combined to be Too Much. And I'll tell you what, I will not be eating that much sugar again for a very long time, if ever.

But it was a lesson I had to learn for myself. Kevin probably could have told me that I might not want to eat it, but he kept his mouth shut and for that, I'm grateful. (He did say he would remind me of that night the next time I have a sweets craving.) This whole journey is a series of lessons that I have to learn for myself, no matter how uncomfortable they might be. I'll tell you what, I don't want to spend another night running back and forth to the bathroom while my body empties itself out in an attempt to get rid of the sugar.

I told Kevin later that this year, during the holidays, I want to use my sensitivity to sugars (which cause bathroom issues) and carbs (which make me sleepy enough to almost pass out if I eat too many) and fat (which makes me nauseous). I want to use them to make moderation a habit rather than a chore. Life without an occasional indulgence is not what I'm going for. What I'm going for is life without uncontrolled binges. Two bite-sized brownies is okay. Scarfing down 4 or 5 full sized brownies for breakfast is not. As long as I remember that, I'll be okay.

(And I won't be in the bathroom for hours either. Awesome!)

I'll see you at the top
Monday, November 12, 2007

At the top
Originally uploaded by Minarae
Remember when I wrote this entry back in May? I was totally convinced that there was no way I would be able to do the 3-Day, just 4 months out from surgery.

Boy, was I wrong.

The walk started on Friday, which happened to be my 4 month anniversary. I'm 55 pounds down but I was still worried, because you know, I'm not skinny yet. I'm still packing on quite a few extra pounds; maybe I hadn't lost enough yet. But I had started training with a group back in August, led by a highly energetic woman names Roxanne. She kicked our butts into walking faster than I usually do, farther than I usually do, more often than I usually do. The training walks were usually attended by the same people and eventually we became this giant team, 71 members strong. And what I forgot was that I was in pretty good shape even before the surgery, so all this training was probably going to make things easier for me.

What was awesome about the gigantic team was that we were all able to find someone that walked at our pace and keep us company through the 3 days of endless walking. My partner was Nancy, and she's the one who took this picture. She took it on the top of the Torrey Pines Reserve service road, a long and windy and steep hill that we had to walk on the first day. The last time I did the walk, I had to stop 3 or 4 times on my way up it.

This weekend, I didn't stop even once. I even passed people on the way up! When I got to the top, I told Nancy that I was having A MOMENT, and she said I needed to take a picture of me, at the top, with people behind me. And you know, that was only the first big hill; we had one on Day 2 and on Day 3. And guess what? I walked straight up those too. In fact, I walked every single one of those miles, with no major injuries and no blisters. It was a goddamned miracle.

This was huge for me, on a number of levels. First, it was huge because I know that I never would have been able to do this 55 pounds ago. I think I need to send this picture to Dr. Mueller with a note that says "Thanks for making this possible for me." Second, I did this while I was still a fat girl. On Sunday night, I was in better shape than a lot of thinner people on that walk. I was limping less and I was blisterless and I was just plain in better shape. And I think it's so important to point that out, because having this surgery has not changed my mind about health at any size being possible. If I, at 242 pounds, can train successfully for an event like this and get through it with nothing more than the standard pain that comes with an endurance event like this, then anyone can.

And they should. Because man, the view from the top is amazing.