First, the food. Why? It’s easier to talk about. Today was a lower-calorie day than I’ve had in a while, but not for lack of trying to hit my daily goal of 800-900 calories. I did hit my protein goal of 80 grams minimum, so that’s what I aim for first. I worry about calories after that since I’m burning more calories than I know I am taking in by just breathing in and out every day. 🙂 Protein must take priority!
I was on my way out of the bathroom earlier this evening on my way to the kitchen to make myself dinner, and stopped by the full-length mirror that hangs on our bedroom closet. I looked at myself and was displeased with what I saw.
I’ve never seen my adult body look so small. This is a hard thing for me to process mentally. Imagine you have spent your entire life weighing easily twice what you should, and only knowing the super-sized you. Now imagine rapidly losing the only you that you know, seeing her in the mirror, and trying to reconcile who and what you see with who you are. It’s tough.
These days, when I look at myself, I am somewhat discouraged by what I see. When I look at myself, I simply don’t like what I’m seeing. I like that I am shrinking, but I don’t like what’s being left behind in the wake of the weight loss.
When I get out of the shower in the mornings and look at myself in the mirror, while I am excited that now the bath sheets we have wrap all the way around me, I am not excited about seeing all the blue twisty veins under my skin as the fat disappears. I am one veiny mother.
Speaking of veins, my varicose veins have worsened. They are far more visible now than they ever were, and they are causing trouble. I have to see my PCP soon, so I am going to ask her about what I should do. I own a pair of compression sleeves for my calves and use them, but not as often as I probably should. I’m not a fan. And compression socks? I won’t be able to wear sandals (which I can do until practically January here in Texas) or dresses, both of which are staples in my wardrobe. This distresses me greatly as I am kind of a girly girl. But the edema that has developed in my legs is so bad that compression socks may be the only way for me to relieve the pain and swelling that I’ve been having despite my best efforts to drink plenty of fluid and move plenty.
My left knee, which has been problematic for the past 18 years, is even more so now. I am pretty sure I will have to have arthroscopic surgery to fix what I screwed up so long ago. The knee joint is swollen and it makes it difficult to bend my leg. Walking or standing for long periods of time is quite painful, and stairs? Yeah…about that. Stairs are a bitch with this knee. This knee is one of the reasons I have a love-hate relationship with physical activity. If I could take Aleve to relieve the pain and swelling, that’d be awesome, but since I’m so early out of my surgery, NSAIDs are a no-no right now. UGH.
My hair is coming out by the handful, and my hair is fine to begin with. I am starting to see larger patches of my scalp showing through. This makes me hesitant to cut my hair, even though I am badly in need of a haircut. I know that the hair loss stops eventually, but it’s really crappy right now to be losing my hair!
Whatever hair I’m losing on my head, I’m gaining on my torso. The hair on my abdomen is darker now–it was very light before. So now my tummy is pretty fuzzy. Ew.
My upper arms are decreasing in diameter, which is good, but which looks weird to me when I put my hands on my hips and stare down my upper arm. I can also see the outline of my deltoids in each of my shoulders, and my collarbone is starting to emerge slowly from the fat that once covered it up.
The loose skin is the most distressing thing–my upper arms are the worst, but I’m also starting to see it in my neck, my forearms and my abdomen. I will Spanx the hell out of what I can, because I refuse to submit to another surgery–one that is not generally covered by insurance–in the name of vanity. I was cut on once, and that was enough for me.
So what I suppose I have to do is learn to love the body that biology is uncovering for me. I have to learn to get to know it and love it, because it’s a body I’ve never known but will be living with the rest of my life.