Friday, November 5, 2010

Why I'm fat

I didn't really mean to publicly blog about my lap-band. I started this blog last January really just to help myself after starting Weight Watchers again (for the third time). Then when I started the lap-band process I returned to this blog just to have a place to write down my thoughts. I made everything super-private so I couldn't be found. As I became more involved with the LBT forums, I started finding more and more blogs, and that's when I made the decision to become "public" as far as blogland is concerned. I was amazed at the vast network of bandster blogs and had to get involved. Now that I have 22 followers (thanks guys!) and have been feeling the comment love, I thought I would give you a real intro to my story. It's quite long, sorry about that.

My family loves to eat. We're Italian, and everything is a reason to celebrate. Of course, when you celebrate, you have to eat ridiculous amounts of food. That, along with the following story I'm going to share, is why I'm fat.

I've always been bigger than average. I was born a week late (apparently I was already a lazy baby) at 9.5lbs, 21.5in. Growing up I was always the tallest kid in class, but I wasn't really a fat kid. I do remember my mom being fat pretty much my entire childhood. She had thyroid problems after I was born and it caused her to balloon up to 400 pounds. My dad retired from the army after 20 years in 1986, and after that he also packed on the pounds. 

My first memory of being "overweight" was 3rd grade. I was already 5 feet tall by then, and I remember going to the doctor and I weight 115lbs. I remember the doctor told my mom I needed to lose some weight. I joined the basketball team that year, and the next time I went to the doctor I weighed 104lbs. The doctor told my mom I was on the right track. 

When I was 10, these twin girls were getting a limo on their birthday and all the girls in the class were going to ride in it. They told me I couldn't go because I was too fat and wouldn't fit in the limo (mind you, they were about 50 pounds each).   

I pretty much stayed a size 14 throughout my teenage years. I finally maxed out my growth spurt at 5'9", and I really managed to fill out my size 14 ;) I always carried my weight well; I recall one particular shopping experience when I was 14. I asked for something in a 14, and the sales girl swore I couldn't be more than an 8; I had to show her my clothing tag to prove it.

In college, I didn't really too bad at first.  I was aware that I was bigger than many of my friends, and knew to stay away from bikinis. I longed to look like my friend "L" who was my height but a size 10. However, I wouldn't say that my weight defined me yet. I was aware of it, but I wasn't a slave to it.

I think it was my junior year that my weight crept up to about 199--I was wearing maybe a 16/18. I went to the doctor and he prescribed Phentermine (Adipex); holy smokes, that was a miracle drug. I didn't even realize I was losing weight until several random people (classmates, coworkers) started commenting on how great I looked. I stepped on the scale and I weighed about 175! I felt quite comfortable with myself and rather enjoyed the attention I was getting from the male population.

I was making googly eyes at my best friend
Well, after a few months I decided that Phentermine really wasn't healthy and I didn't like the way it made me feel, so I stopped taking it thinking I would at least maintain on what I was eating. WRONG! I stayed at 175 from about August - December 2004 (junior year), and as soon as I stopped taking the pills I started gaining. 

I met my husband in May 2005, and probably weighed about 190. By December, I was 215 pounds (I'd finally broken the dreaded 200-pound barrier). I joined LA Weight Loss, which was a disaster. We got engaged in June 2006 and I promptly joined Weight Watchers Online @ 245lbs. Lost a little, but ultimately gained and by the time we were married in August 2007, I was about 265lbs. Suffice it to say, I was feeling fat now, and I think this is when my weight started taking a toll on who I was as a person. 

December 2007, I joined Weight Watchers again but this time going to meetings. I went the week before Christmas, and after the new year my mom started going with me. Lost a little, but then on January 21st mom didn't go to the meeting with me because she didn't feel well. Later that night, around midnight, my dad called to tell me they were at the hospital because mom was having a heart attack. 

Long, depressing story short, my mother died on January 31st, 2008. During the 10 days I spent in the hospital hoping and praying for her survival, I gorged myself on everything I could find. My emotions had always dictated how I ate (a family tradition) and it didn't fail me now. In the months following, I continued to gorge. In March 2008, my dad was in a terrible car accident and since there was no one at home to take care of him, he had to spend 3 months in a "rehabilitation facility" (a glorified nursing home). I took on the most of his care, and continued to eat to feel good. I teetered around 295-298 for a long time, then finally in November 2008 I weighed in at 301 pounds. 

Now, at this time my husband was having problems finding a job and money was tight and our poor new marriage was not all that we'd hoped for. We finally made the decision to move to Korea and teach English. We needed to get away from all the drama that was beginning to define our marriage and we were able to make money doing it. Marc came to Korea in November 2008, and I followed in February 2009 (I had to put in a proper notice at my job and find and train a replacement). 

Last September I learned I have PCOS and together my husband and I decided that it was time for weight loss surgery. I felt like I was in the right place, emotionally--I no longer turned to food every time something went wrong--and I obviously wasn't going to lose all the weight by myself. You can read more about the decision here

Anyway. This is why I'm fat. I tried really hard to cut out a lot of "fluff", but this still ended up really long. If you made it this far, congratulations! I should give you an award or something :) 


The Babbling Bandit said...

I read the whole story and it was really well written and well worth the read. Wow, you've been through a lot. It must have been terrible to lose your mum at such a young age, but it must also have been a bit of a health scare too?

Sounds like you have a very strong relationship with your husband and that you are really ready for this lap band journey.

I wish you the best of luck and am glad to be following your journey with you.


~Lisa~ (Mrs C) said...

Thank you for sharing your story with me. We are all here for you - to support you, to cheer you on, and to give kick's in the derriere when you need it! I love this group of people! We're all on the same journey - to be healthier. And it is always better to travel hand in hand with friends then alone...

Pamela E. Williams said...

Wow, You have really endured. I am sorry for your loss in your mom. I am glad to be here following you on your journey.

Rachel said...

It sounds like you have thought out your issues with a lot of introspection. I think this insight will help you be successful in your weight loss journey. Good luck and I look forward to supporting you and learning from you too.

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