Ok, so this is a little tough for me to talk about. I've told my family and a couple of friends, but for some reason I get tongue-tied because I'm a little bit embarassed. However, success is more likely if you're more open about things and look for friends and family to support your efforts.
I have signed up for a weight loss outpatient program through the local hospital. I was originally going to start next week, but there was a bump in the road and now I won't be starting until December. (December! So close yet so far away.)
How did I come across this? Well, I have been on blood pressure medication for about six months now, and although I have a family history of blood pressure issues, my weight is a factor. I've been trying (sometimes half-heartedly) to lose weight on my own for a few years now. And like many others out there, I do well for a while and then get bored, busy or otherwise unmotivated. So when I saw a pamphlet at my doctor's office for this, I thought "hmm, this may be just the push I need" and agreed to attend an orientation meeting.
Their program is broken into two categories: behavioral and surgical. I wasn't really interested in the surgical track, it really scares me. And I don't qualify, though I was shocked to find out that I wasn't too far from qualifying BMI-wise. I decided that the fifteen week program on their behavioral track was for me, and when they called the next day, I scheduled an intake before I could lose my nerve.
The intake was really hard. Not the weigh-in, or the exam. The hard part was when the doctor asks "how did you come to gain weight?" The honest answer? Being blissfully unaware. In high school, I was thin. But upon going to college, it was like a free-for all. Dessert with dinner? Sure. Snack while studying? Absolutely. Midnight pizza or a run to Dunkin Donuts? Bring it on!! I wish sometimes I could tap my older self on the shoulder and shriek "What are you doing to yourself!!! Put down that slice of pizza and take a walk!" Or discovered knitting sooner, instead of stress-eating. After college I tried diet pills and although they worked, they made me feel crappy. And the second you stop taking them, the weight creeps back on slowly while your back is turned and your guard is down. Add a sedentary job and two children, and it's not tough to see how this happened.
But I'm not concerned anymore about how it happened. I want to right a wrong. I've done myself wrong, and I want to make it up to me. I want to be healthier for my two boys, I want to be able to run around with them all day and keep up. I don't want to be the Mama who never goes anywhere because she's embarrassed about how she looks. I want to make sure I NEVER get diabetes. (Gestational was enough!) I want to cut up my Lane Bryant card and be able to shop anywhere I want. I want choices. I want it all! This is my gift to MYself. In short, I want to "add years to my life, and life to my years."
So...December may be a ways away but I've already started making changes for the better. I gave up drinking regular soda two weeks ago and surprisingly, I don't miss it. I've started taking the stairs more often. I park the car further away from the store. And when Will wants a "Lady Gaga Dance Party," I join in, even if I can only do a couple minutes before my legs hurt and I'm breathing hard.
Why the embarrassment? At first, I felt a bit like a failure. Like "look at me, I'm going to the hospital to learn to lose weight because I've failed to do it on my own." I'm starting to not see it so much that way. It sounds like a really good program, one that really covers the bases. I am going to meet with a nutritionist, an exercise physiologist, and a psychologist. These three aspects...all of them are important in their own way and create "the big picture."
So, with the support of my friends and family, I am ready for this journey. I CAN DO THIS!!