Sunday, October 31, 2010

Mistaken Identity

I think I got the biggest compliment of life at work the other day, without the person even knowing that she gave me one. I was talking with the girl who shares an office with me about diets because she was thinking about trying low carb. I told her I did Atkins a couple of years ago and lost about 8 kilos and that low carb really works if you can stick with it (I couldn't). She was shocked that I had lost 8 kilos and said:

"You must have been tiny, that is a lot of weight to lose off your small frame."

I was literally lost for words and I couldn't respond. No one has ever thought of me as 'little' before. Of course, she doesn't realise that I used to weigh 130 kilos and that when I actually lost those 8 kilos it wasn't really noticeable to anyone.

Another weird thing that happened at work was when I walking down the corridor and I could here a woman calling out "Jess". That's not my name, so I just ignored it, but she kept persisting. I was the only person around, so I had to stop and see what she wanted. I turned around and she said "Oh sorry, you're not Jess". I could not believe she had mistaken me for my size 12 colleague, I mean aside from anything, my colleague is a hell of a lot more stylishly dressed and put together than I am!

It's so weird to know people now who don't know I used to be morbidly obese. I wouldn't mind telling people, except that I don't know people at this job that well yet and I'm only here until February so I don't feel the need to over-share.

I am starting to feel like I have entered the Twilight Zone.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Sick and Sicker

Here is a perfect example of why I don’t like my band being so tight. Last Friday I decided to treat myself to some sushi for lunch (I never buy my lunch, I’m too much of a tight arse). While walking back to work with my sushi, I ran into two colleagues who were delighted to see I had gone to their favourite sushi place. They said they go there all the time and I must come with them next time. Of course I agreed, I really like these girls and I was happy to be making some new work friends. So I get back to work and discover that with the restriction in my band I couldn’t even get one bite of sushi down. I ended up picking the salmon out of the middle and just eating that. So, since Friday they have asked me to go for sushi with them three times and I have said no and used the excuse that I have already bought my lunch in, but they are going to think I am being rude soon. There is no way I can get any sushi down and this place only sells sushi rolls, so I can’t even order anything else. God I hate being weird…

In my continuing saga of sickness (yes I realise this topic is getting boring), I went to a good doctor yesterday at the recommendation of B, who was kind enough to share her doctor with me. I have had a lot of tests done and have more to do in my lunch break today and over the weekend and so far the doctor thinks I either have a parasite or malaria. So I guess that explains why I have felt like dying for the past few weeks. I’ll share something horrific with you, because there is no way I am telling anyone I know in my life outside the internet. Brace yourselves… I have to give a stool sample. I know, I can’t believe it myself. I asked if there was any way around this mortifying event and the doctor said I can’t have the drugs to make me better until I do it. So my Friday night involves a packet of laxatives and some sample jars. Oh my god.

So it hasn’t been a good week, but I am focussing on the fact that it is Friday, it’s my pay day and it’s going to be 28 degrees today, so it’s not all bad!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Blah Blah Blah

It seems there are a lot of us out there in blogworld feeling down and out lately, I’m not sure what it is about this time of year, but I feel very blah too. Well actually, feeling blah would be a massive improvement on my disposition right now. I feel like I constantly try to count my blessings and look on the bright side, but this last week has delivered a few severe blows that it just seems like one thing after the other and I just can’t even see the positives in anything anymore.

So you can see why I have been avoiding my blog, no one wants to hear all this negative crap and I also just haven’t had the energy to write anything. When I am not feeling the best I just don’t care about my weight and I want to eat. I know people say that comfort eating doesn’t make you feel better, but I disagree, well it makes me feel better anyway…

One thing I am grateful for at the moment is my lap band. Since I got a fill a couple of weeks ago it has really helped me cut down my portions. I have been eating whatever I feel like (including lots of foods heavy in butter and sugar… whoops) and not exercising because I have been too sick and I haven’t gained any weight. It feels like I am over-eating, but I am obviously not doing as bad as I think if my weight is holding steady.

I have been banded for about 18 months and I only now feel like I actually have a lap band. I can finally relate to all the things I have seen you all write about on your lap band blogs, like being tight in the morning, certain foods sticking, not having an appetite for half a day, then being ravenous another day…

I actually thought for a while there that I must have such a bad over-eating problem that the band wouldn’t work for me. I was still able to eat crazy amounts of foods and to lose any weight I had to feel hungry and deprived all the time. Now I can see that I just didn’t have my restriction right and that when I have the band properly filled it will work.

That being said, I am not sure how long I’ll keep my band this tight. It’s good on one hand because I just physically can’t eat a lot of food. This is perfect for me in my current mindset because I need all the help I can get. Ultimately though, I think I’d rather have the band a little looser because I am finding it difficult to eat a lot of foods and eating out is also hard. I look weird because I have to eat so slowly and I am finding I have started to avoid eating in social situations. This doesn’t work with my lifestyle and I would rather have to work a little harder to get the weight off and be able to enjoy eating with my friends and family. I also want to be able to go to restaurants without having to sneak off to the bathroom because something is stuck. I know it seems like I want it all, but I do think I’ll be able to strike the right balance if I keep trying.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

It's All About Balance

The whole reason I decided to get a lap band was because I had finally realised that diets don't work. I have been on a diet since I was 5 years old and have succeeded in getting fatter every year until I was morbidly obese. The problem is that even when I got the lap band I stuck with the old diet mentality of thinking I had to be hungry and deprived to lose weight. This was mostly because I wasn't 'working' my lap band by having enough restriction in it due to my employment situation. I was also pushing myself to do exercise I didn't enjoy and I wasn't achieving the balance I wanted in my life. Basically, weight loss was still a huge bloody effort.

I read a lot of weight loss surgery blogs and what I have noticed is that a lot of the people who have been successful in losing weight and living a balanced life are the ones that stopped dieting when they had their surgery. They listen to their bodies and eat when they are hungry and eat foods that sustain their bodies. I haven't been doing a very good job of listening to my body, both in forcing myself to be hungry, and also over eating.

I seem to constantly be putting a lot of pressure on myself to get to a certain weight by a certain day, which only encourages my starve and binge mentality. As with any diet, you can only sustain the behaviour for a limited period of time before you come undone. That is the point I am at now, but I feel strangely calm about it all of a sudden. I realised on the weekend that if I don't lose another kilo for the rest of my life, that would be OK. I would actually like to lose more weight, but accepting that I am OK as I am now and I don't have to hate myself has been a huge relief.

Of course it's not as simple as just saying that and erasing 25 years of bad behaviours and self-hatred... I think it'll take a lot of work to achieve the balance I am after, but that will be my new goal from now on. Instead of striving for a particular number on the scale or a size on my clothes, I just want to feel good about my body and my health. I want to eat food I enjoy and that makes my body feel good and I want to do exercise that puts a smile on my face. That doesn't mean that I wouldn't love to squeeze my arse into a pair of size 10 jeans or see 65 kilos on the scales one day, but I am not going to define my self-worth on these factors.

I must admit that this isn't the first time these thoughts have crossed my mind, but I am determined to work harder on putting these thoughts into practice. Life is just too short to diet.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Green Zone?

I'm still out with this virus I got in Bali and have taken the last couple of days off work to sleep. The doctor said I could be sick up to a month and that is normal with these things, so I am really hoping I feel better soon because this is awful. The sun has finally been shining here in Melbourne (well, sometimes) and I am laid up on the couch and not able to enjoy the spring.

Unfortunately I am not one of those people who lose their appetite when they are sick and I am up 5 freaking kilos since my lowest weight and I feel Terrible. Miserable. Disgusting. I still can't seem to stop binge eating and I am not really sure why. I was going to list the amount of food I ate yesterday, but I am seriously too embarrassed. I think I would mortify you bandsters if you knew the amount of food I could put away.

So today I made a last minute appointment to get a fill in my band in the hope it would help. The doctor put .3 mls in, taking me to 5.9 mls in a 10 ml band, and I can feel the difference already. I don't want to speak too soon, but I think I might finally have this restriction I have heard you guys talk about. I might finally be in the green zone! (touch wood) I only managed to eat half my lean cuisine tonight before stopping because I was so full. Normally I eat a lean cuisine, then dessert and then twitch with hunger all night, but right now I am positively stuffed.

I am quite excited that I might finally be using this band correctly!

Thursday, October 07, 2010

What's Going On

I am not feeling the best and can't string together a thought, so here is a few things I am thinking...

Firstly, I have gotten sicker and sicker since returning from Bali and starting to think my Bali belly have turned into malaria. I have fever and chills all day and night and can barely pick up my toothbrush to brush my teeth at the moment. I have travelled a lot and I know what jet lag is and this definitely not jet lag. I am trying to get in to see a doctor, but so far the 5 I have tried are either not taking new patients or are booked out. I was too tired to try anymore after that. OK, I might be being a touch dramatic, I probably don't have malaria.

Secondly, I want to eat many of these delicious looking morsels from It Pleases Us.  

Mmmm, they would slip right through the band. Delicious.

Thirdly, I have made a decision to never purchase clothes that are too small for me again and I feel so liberated. I have a weird body shape and trying on clothes that I have bought and are too small for me week, after week to see if they fit yet makes me feel shiteous. They are always too tight across my stomach and then starting to get too big in the shoulders and look terrible. Why buy clothes that are too tight when you can buy clothes that look fabulous right now?

Fourthly, of all the photos of myself that I have seen from Bali, some nice and some hideous, the one that surprised me the most was this one. It's not the most flattering photo of me by a long shot, but I just look normal.

Fifthly, working sucks. FULL STOP.

Monday, October 04, 2010

Bali Photos

It's time for photos from Bali! Now, as usual, most photos will feature my big head because I am not sure my travel companions were thrilled to be featured in my pictures. Check out their blogs (B, Amanda and her boy) in case they post more pictures, plus they all had fancy pants cameras and they know stuff about photography so their photos are a lot better than mine!

Alila resort where we stayed, no photos can do this place justice, it was beautiful.

The resort reception, we were welcome here with a lovely refreshing drink after a long and hot flight.

The pool at Alila, it was more amazing than this photo shows. I want to live here!

I spent my first morning sitting by the pool watching the monkey's play. They were starting to freak me out by the end and didn't seem quite so cute.

Me after a dawn swim on my first morning in Bali.

The rice fields in Ubud.

Me in the rice fields in Ubud, after having to practically jump a river to get there, all I am thinking in this photo is 'how the fuck am I going to get back?'.

The water temple in Ubud.

Me sitting at the water temple in Ubud, the tour guide insisted I sit down for this photo (not my best angle) and you can see my chest is all puffed up from trying to suck my stomach in!

To enter a certain part of the water temple I had to put on this sarong and my old fat girl fears just kept thinking that it wouldn't fit.

The water temple.

Me at the gates of the temple. I love how the tour guide managed to make me look like I have long legs in this photo. I need to hire him to take all photos of me from now on.

A woman roasting coffee beans at a coffee plantation.

The delicious teas and coffees I got to try at the coffee plantation.

Me standing in front of Batur volcano. The boys in our group got up at 3.00am to hike to it's summit, I have never been so glad not to be a boy!

Drinking a yummy cocktail at dinner in Ubud.

The markets in Ubud.

More of the markets in Ubud.

Me at the markets on the morning of the bride's hens day.

The markets again, the people and food was just amazing.

All the motorbikes parked out the front of the markets, everyone in Bali rides motorbikes and the roads are very scary!

Me at the bride's hens day (bachelorette) at a cooking class.

The cooking instructors (check out the creepy photo behind them).

Some of the delicious food we 'helped' make.

More of the food we 'helped' make, oh those duck skewers were so freaking good.

Me at the bride's hens mojito and ribs night. The food and drinks were just delicious! I am having mojito withdrawals as we speak.

Me after being out shopping with B in Ubud, behind that smile I am questioning why the hell I purchased a stone mortar and pestle that I have to carry around all night...

Every tourist to Bali has to drink Bintang!

Me at the pool in the resort relaxing before the wedding.

Where I had some spa treatments at the resort before the wedding, the outdoor shower was amazing.

The massage table at the resort, best massage I have ever had!

Me before the wedding. My hair didn't stay like that for long, hello humidity!

Pouring champers for B, Amanda and her boy in my room before the wedding.

The wedding ceremony area.

Balinese musicians at the wedding ceremony.

Balinese cultural ceremony at the wedding.

The torrential rain that came down right after the wedding. Lucky the bride had a wonderful sense of humour about it all.

The pool where the wedding reception was held. My photos don't do this justice, the lighting was magnificent.

The wedding reception before everyone arrived.

Me laughing because of my embarrassment at my boobs hanging out of my dress all night. Must remember to do the sit down test in new clothes to see how low cut things become when sitting down!

A photo of my party shoes that I took with B's camera, you are lucky not to see the photos I also took of my boobs on Amanda's camera!

I wish I could show you more photos of how beautiful the bride looked and my snazzy travel buddies, but I won't be mean and do that to them. Just know they looked good!

Now I have post-holiday depression and need to plan my next holiday. Where should I go next, Thailand, Europe, New York??? All three would suit me actually.

Sunday, October 03, 2010

Home Again

It's always nice to come home at the end of a lovely holiday. Especially after a disgusting overnight flight on a cramped cheap airline with a case of Bali belly and sporting a few drunken injuries. Poor B, I was not a fun travel companion on the way home!

I had a fabulous holiday and the wedding was STUNNING, but I'll write more about that tomorrow when I'm feeling better. For now I'll leave you with an idea of how the night started and ended for me at the wedding.

A very civilised way to get ready for the wedding with B, Amanda and her boy. (Photo stolen from B)

My thigh today after falling down the stairs of the pool while going for a drunken swim at 4.00 am. I rarely ever bruise, so that gives you an idea how painful that is! This photo sums up how I have spent my day, laying on the couch in my nightie and dressing gown, too sick to move.