Thursday, August 4, 2005

Categorizing

  It feels now as if the world falls into three sometimes overlapping categories. The first is that of friends and neighbors, many of who care for me a lot, who are concentrating on the outer aspects of this thing I'm going through. They ask, quite sincerely, how I'm doing, tell me I look thinner already around the face and belly(and I do) and inquire if I am feeling better yet, any healthier, any more energetic, any thinner yet.  

I am smiling at them, to the best of my ability, and saying the correct things, thank you for complimenting me, for the support you offer, no I'm not feeling more energetic or healthier yet, but that will come, I know. I'm working at it, eating as best as I can, riding my exercise bike. All this is true, plus it is what they want to/expect to hear. And I truly know they are working hard to be supportive and I honor them for it.  

The second category is those who recognize that I have been through a physical trauma, and will continue to suffer pouch pain and vomiting for months to come. I was not a great candidate for surgery (most gastric bypass patients aren't) with my added problems of 30 years of diabetic damage, heart condition, and need for oxygen, I did not exactly bounce back, In fact, I have just moved from dragging myself across the floor on my hands and knees to lurching upright into a stagger. Adding small bits of food one at a time has been a difficult problem which has left me with belly pain almost full time, and I am not close to my food and water requirements yet. But I'll get there.  

Most of these folks have had major surgery of some type, or chronic pain, and I do appreciate them a lot, because they "get" how wearing pain and exhaustion is over any length of time. I am still not sleeping well, and every excursion-to Wall-Mart or a doctor's appointment- sets me back on energy reserves.  

The last category is a small one, consisting of the few people who realize that I am not just wallowing around in misery, but slowly and in my own obscure way processing a loss as big as the death of a beloved spouse. Most people don't get that I love food on many, many levels, and that in many ways it worked well for me. It looks and smells and tastes good, it is a center around which people gather to socialize, to connect with each other, to cement bonds.  

It also worked extremely well for me emotionally. It calmed me when I was enraged, comforted me when I was sad, filled me when I felt emotionally empty, soothed me off to sleep, pacified the pain of life-both physical and emotional, and enabled me to keep on living when times were really bad. Even being fat, then obese, then grossly obese was not a deterrant.The fact that I knew it was killing me didn't matter for a really long time.  

I would go back to eating in a minute if I could, and live obese and deal with the prejudices and rude comments and negative judgements, except I don't want to die yet. WLS is the only tool available to me to force me to move away from my addiction to the way food makes me feel. And I am already getting pressure to accept the changes, and move on. 

This is what few people get.. It take energy to move on, and I am teetering on the brink of an energy abyss. The best I can do now is get up in the morning and take my meds and force down two tablespoons of egg or yogurt, and deal with the physical pain, and sip water as much as possible and ride my bike for seven minutes and get through the day as best I can. When the crying jags hit, I try hard to summon energy for them, too. And when I feel anger, I let myself yell swear words. This is all the all I have energy for right now.  

I am truly grateful to all the people in my life who are trying so hard to be supportive, and most especially for those few who fall into all three categories.The the support that helps most, however, is the emotional understanding and patience of those who can just sit with me in my pain without trying to fix it, or push it along. Their honoring of my process is a gift beyond words.  

Blessings, Margo          

10 comments:

njlittlebear said...

                             (((((((((((Margo)))))))))))
I can totally understand about always wanting the comfort of food. I still struggle with that weekly, daily, hourly and every second. People don't realize that food is an addiction to some.  Food is always the main ingredient and tied to going out and having fun and so hard not to think about.  I'm sure the people who love you feel helpless and want to help you so much...such a hard situation for everyone.  Keep at it...the bike is doing wonders for you even if you don't think it is. XXOXOXOXO  Keep the faith !

NJLB
http://journals.aol.com/njlittlebear/MyBigFatGeekLife

ksquester said...

Oh Margo, I admire your candor, courage and your willingness to share your life with us.  Lovingly, Anne

ryanagi said...

It's my emotional attachment to food and the fear of losing that crutch that keeps me from doing anything more than researching my options. I get you...with interest. It takes a while to get past the "oh hell...what have I done to myself..." phase. It's this part of the battle that interests me most, believe it or not, because THIS is the hardest part, I think. And I think you are doing as well as can be expected. {{{Margo}}}

indigosunmoon said...

Margo,
There are still times I feel like crying...but those times
are getting fewer and farther between.  I felt exactly
the same you way you described about food.  It was my
best friend when I felt like I had none...my lover when
I had no one.  It was there for me when the stress of
daily life began to be too much.  It was a social thing too.
Going out to dinner seems like the only thing to do in
this town.  
I understand Margo.  I truly do.  I am so very proud
of all you have accomplished so far.  You are doing
great babe.  Try not to focus so much on what you have
lost...try rather, to focus on what you will gain from all
of this.  I know it's hard to do when you are feeling so
down.
Much love to you,
Connie

thebaabee said...

Margo,
Your words are always so profound.  I can completely understand your feelings about food.  I, too, love it.  And, like you, it is becoming my downfall.  I read your journal and reflect.  I feel for you Dear. Do what needs to be done at your own pace.  Blessings, LuAnne
http://journals.aol.com/thebaabee/LUANNESLIFELIVINGWITHLUPUS

judithheartsong said...

dear Margo.... you are loved and yes, the best thing anybody can do is honor our process. Many people find so much discomfort with emotional issues that they want you to say and do the right things so that they can stay in their comfort zone. I am finally learning that it is not always about everybody else. Sometimes it is just about me.
I love you and respect you and cannot imagine the change that this would be. You be you and know that we love you and want to hold space for your process.
all my love my friend,
judi

blondepennierae said...

Margo, I know you don't feel it at the moment, but it screams from your writing ... you are one of the strongest people that I have ever known.  Love, Pennie  

csandhollow said...

Thank you. With all the pain going on in your own life you found time to tender me some comfort in mine.

christapaz said...

You are so courageous. I too am a food addict, and I know the comfort and security can bring. Even after getting sober 12 years ago after years of a horrible drug and alcohol addiction, I cannot let food go. We have so much in common, and I am glad you left me a comment so we could get connected. I caught up on your blog and look forward to your entries.  love, christa

fjrav said...

Wow, Margo.  You have indeed gone through a lot since I last visited your journal.  I pray that you will continue to have the stregnth, courage, and endurance that you have so far demonstrated.  Take pride in knowing that you are an inspiration to many. :-)  God bless.