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Wednesday, September 5, 2007

POOF!




So, today, 2 weeks after buying my new Escape, a woman named Terry called from the dealership to see if things were going well, if I enjoyed my experience and if I had any questions about my new vehicle. What a nice gesture! Terry and I had never met but we clicked right away. Now, I’m not sure if I just miss the adult interaction of my normal life or if I was just in the mood to chat but we had a lovely and lengthy conversation…..the least of which was about my new Escape! As we were nearing the end of our gab-fest, Terry said “Looks like it’s lunch time! I better get ready to eat ! It’s another gourmet frozen Weight Watchers meal for me! Ugh. Nothing like starving and still being fat!” Feeling her pain and remembering that there was a drive-thru McDonald’s next to the dealership, I responded with an empathetic laugh “Yep, I know what you mean! Wouldn’t it be nice to have a Big Mac instead?” “For sure! But, I might as well just apply it to my hips, that’s where it will go!” she laughed. “Yep, I know the feeling! With me, it’s my stomach---everything goes RIGHT there!” I agreed. “Don’t I just wish I could make my life a little easier and get one of those bands they are advertising now put on my stomach? Poof, it’s over! Skinny me!” she sarcastically laughed. Of course, she had no idea that the woman sitting on the other end of the phone had done just that. It wasn’t Terry’s fault . I knew that. Still, I felt my face flush and a lump starting to form in my throat. It was time to end the call…..before I fell apart or things got ugly. But, I wanted to yell “There’s no POOF sweetie! No POOF AT ALL Wanna see my scars? You wanna hear about what I have been eating? Hey, you wanna know how I’ve been sleeping for the past 3 weeks? Huh? Do ya?!” but instead I said “Well, have a nice lunch. Thanks for calling.” I really wanted to say “POOF” right then and there. But, I let it go.

Considering that I’m blogging my way through my Lap Band journey, it’s safe to say that I am not really keeping this a secret. But, that’s just me…..I’m out there with certain things. Yes, I have my share of secrets. But, this isn’t one of them. Prior to my surgery, I was open with people about what I was doing. I mean, I didn’t knock on doors and say “hi, I’m Judi, I’m having Lap Band surgery” but I didn’t consider it something I needed to hide from the world. Most people who knew---my great family, my dear girlfriends and the wonderful women I work side-by-side with—were and continue to be wonderfully caring, supportive and encouraging. My father even said it’s the best idea I’ve had yet and he makes daily phone-ins to check on my weight (yes, it’s true)! Perhaps other people knew—from word of mouth. I’m not sure. And, I have no idea what they think. In fact,. maybe there are people right now who think I shouldn’t have done this or they are angry with me for doing this or they think it was selfish of me to take the time off from work to do this or use my health insurance to cover the cost or maybe there are people who consider me a failure for having to resort to weight loss surgery. If Terry, a stranger, thought weight loss surgery is the easy way out…what will people who know me think?. I feel that lump coming back in my throat. I’m not sure if I’m just very na├»ve or if I’m too trusting! But, it never occurred to me that anyone would look down upon me for this decision.. But, now, I wonder. In fact, I’m worrying. I wonder if people will treat me different knowing that I had Lap Band surgery. I’m not sure why I care but I do. I care a lot.

Since the surgery, the only people I’ve really spent any time with have been people who know what I just did and support it. I haven’t ventured into the world quite yet. Oh, sure, I told the clerk at GNC and maybe I mentioned it to a handful of others---acquaintances and strangers. . But, I’m not back to my daily routines. I’m not back at work yet. I haven’t really been to a party or done anything social with other people. So, I haven’t walked in my own shoes yet….so to speak. How will I respond to someone who says or even thinks “POOF”? How will I respond to someone who considers any pain or discomfort I felt or feel or any inconvenience from my surgery as my own fault and something I deserve? What will I say to someone who ignores me or treats me differently? What should I say when someone says something not-so-nice to me about my weightloss or how I look? What will I say? Should I just say "POOF"?



13 comments:

CherishmeNOW (Cheryl) said...

Judi:
I wish I could say that I can't believe that woman said that! But, I know better. You say the things we are thinking!
***********************************
I do read your blog everyday and never comment. Today I had to. I am so worried about going back to work in 2 weeks. There's people who have kept in touch but some of the people (the people who I eat lunch with!) who I thought would keep in touch have not even. Reading this today really made me think about all of what you said. We have to stay strong. We know why we did this and what it means. Those others don't. Someone said it on LBT and I think they are right: prepare to have your feelings badly hurt. We are still the same people but maybe they didn't like us enough in the first place.
Thanks for putting all these topics out there.

You are doing great!
xox
Cheryl (CherishmeNOW)

Anonymous said...

Judi,

After you say "POOF" you say Fuck off! At this point, the people who know you know you. They know the person you are. I'll bet there's not a person who knows you that has not been touched by your kindness. It's what we all know about you and why we love you so much.
It's easy. Repeat after me
FUCK OFF. Practice it a few times before you "walk in your own shoes" and you'll be fine.

love you, Jenn

Anonymous said...

DITTO what Jenn said!
Katie

Anonymous said...

Judi;
Try to get your hands on the article 'To Tell or not to Tell: Breaking the News: The who, when, why of telling others about your surgery' by Terri Elofson Bly that appeared in the 2006 First Quarter WLS Magazine. It helped me tremendously with this.

I'm sorry you are feeling this way. But it is understandable given the reality of the current cultural attitude towards wls (any type). After all of our humiliation of being obese, knowing that a new opportunity for humiliation awaits us at the hands of ill-informed, insensitive people is not too appealling. I'm not sure if you are feeling any of this from any particular people. But I can tell that the prospect of it is upseting to you. You are creating a community here for many people. Maybe you can use this forum to educate others about obesity. It is an illness that no one has sympathy for. You have the power through your blog and leadership to champion causes like this. WLS patients are brave, courageous people!

The article I mention is worth seeking and reading. It is a great publication that you should subscribe to.

Good Luck. You are doing great. Try not to let others hurt you. Even if they are people you consider friends. Perhaps all they need is to be put in the know. Or maybe they are jealous?

Renee W. (BanditRenee)

Anonymous said...

DITTO Jenn!
I don't even know Jenn but I like her.
Don't shoot!
Bob

Anonymous said...

P.S. "go Commando" while you say Fuck Off
Bob

vicci said...

Oh Judi!
Don't let anyone get you down! Give 'em some sass! We're with ya! Let us at 'em!

WRITE A BOOK. That should shut up those people.

Love it!
Vicci

Anonymous said...

No, Judi, the only way to deal with those people is to live well, be happy and be THIN. Can't control the idiots of the world so don't sweat it. Keep the faith.
Got your back!
Neysa

Anonymous said...

Love the gun! POOF!
Nance

Anonymous said...

Did you get a boob job too?
Looks like it from the pic of you holding the gun.
Nice job. Cute dress.

Marib

BandStar (Ginny) said...

Judi:

Just catching up now! Whew Busy Lady!
4th day of bandland and hanging in. The "air" is really something! (not gas hehe) Sleeping still an issue. Pain is controlled by drugs. LOL!
Wanted to comment that I only told DH, my sis & bff. Folks at work-NO! Gossip spreads like wild fire and it is not nice. They can sit back and watch me get thin and wonder. Told my boss "lady problems". Shut him up good!
I didn't want to be in the position to worry about going back to work or to church or over to in in-laws wondering what people are thinking. Too much added stress!
Hate to think your spirit is dampened by this worry.
Like others have said, we love ya girl.
Ginny (BandStar)

BandStar (Ginny) said...

OOPS! It's only my 3rd day of bandland. The drugs, the drugs!

Daffodil Hill said...

Oh, Judi, I am so sorry that you have been hurt by careless comments! You are a courageous woman who definitely doesn't deserve that. I can relate because I have to deal with similar hurt/rejection over my Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.

People need to be educated about these things. You may be just the one to take on that project, so tune out the hurtful comments made in ignorance, and TEACH people the truth about Lapband surgery!