I am an extremely lucky woman. I have an amazing husband who makes me laugh every day, a wonderful group of friends, an incredible family, a lovely home, and a good job. Not to mention the cutest cat in the world. :) I have so much to be thankful for, and I try my best to remember it every day.
But today...I thought I would take some time and give thanks for a few things specifically related to my lap band journey.
I'm thankful for good timing. I'm so grateful that I attended my lap band seminar when I did. I was at a point in my life when I was really, truly, ready to receive the information and begin the journey. I can't say for sure exactly what it was that Dr. Wellborn said that resonated so much with me, I just remember that everything he said made perfect sense. Like someone had turned a light on in a dark room. He wasn't offering a fairy tale, nor was he trying to sell it as an easy fix. He just came in, spoke in plain language, and explained the process. In October of 2012, I was 40 years old and had been dieting since the 5th grade. No exaggeration. I had tried literally everything under the sun, and I felt like I was losing hope. The things that had worked for me in my 20's and early 30's, just weren't working anymore. Age and metabolism aren't necessarily friends, and I was feeling myself becoming more hopeless every day. In the days after the seminar, as I began to truly process everything I had heard, I felt the strangest emotion. It took me a while to recognize that it was hope and optimism about the future. Something that I had not felt in a long time.
I am thankful for waiting periods. I can't believe I'm actually saying this, but I'm also thankful that my insurance required six months of physician supervised weight loss prior to approving me for surgery. Not that I lost any weight whatsoever! In fact, I weighed more on the day of my surgery, than I did at the beginning of my journey. Now...if someone had suggested to me that I should be grateful for this time, I probably would've cut them with a dull butter knife. But now I realize it was exactly what I needed. It gave me a chance to fully indulge my Type A personality and my insatiable need for information. When I decided that this was the route I was going to take, I threw myself into researching every aspect of the surgery. I read blogs, books, web forums...literally everything I could get my hands on. I realize that reading about it and actually living it are two different things, but I did feel especially prepared going into the surgery. I'm also thankful that I had this time, because it allowed me to have my surgery at the beginning of the summer. Because I teach school, this was perfect. I had the whole summer to recover and ease into my new lifestyle.
I'm thankful that I cut myself some slack. In the days immediately following surgery, it's thrilling to see how fast the pounds drop. But after a while, it tapers off. Your body goes into what I affectionately like to call "WTF mode" as it recovers from the trauma of surgery. For me, Bandster Hell was not feeling hungry all the time before my first fill, it was that my weight loss completely stalled out. So, I simply stopped weighing myself. In fact, I didn't weigh myself again until around the time I made this post on July 13. By that time, the weight-loss was back on track. I think if I had continued to weigh myself on a daily basis, it would have simply devastated me. And possibly derailed my progress.
I'm thankful that I have kept my commitment to exercise. Right after surgery, I began walking as soon as I could. After a few weeks, I added some light weights. I was going along just fine and then...BAM. Plantar Fasciitis. I took a couple of weeks off and tried to let it heal. And then, because I am stubborn, I went right back to walking. Not good. I realized quickly that it was going to take more than a couple of weeks. I now know that it can take some people years to fully recover. So...I began to look around for other things that I could do in the meantime. That's when I discovered what is now my favorite workout of all. The Cybex Arc Trainer. It's like an elliptical trainer, but it's easier on your knees, and claims to burn more calories. I know that when I started it, I could barely do 10 minutes. Over the past few weeks I've worked up to 30. I have to push myself, but I always feel great afterwards. There is something especially rewarding about pushing your body and having it actually respond. It's amazing to me that a few short months ago, I could barely walk around the track. I'm thankful for how strong I am becoming and that I have energy to live life more fully.
I'm thankful for my support group. Not only do I include family and friends in this group, but the people in my actual support group. I'm also incredibly thankful for the lap band blogging community. You guys are the absolute best. I started this blog to have a place to organize my thoughts, to document my journey, and for accountability. I never could have imagined all the wonderful friends I would "meet" too. And speaking of awesome banders, if you get a chance over the next few days, be sure to check out Lora over at Heart of Life. She is a very sweet, newly banded blogger, and is knocking it out of the park with her weight loss.
I hope everyone has the most wonderful Thanksgiving. Thanks for reading!