the day my hero died

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I am currently feeling so strange, so strange.

 

 

Perhaps the passing of the father of our nation, Nelson Mandela, has a lot to do with it.

 

This whole week has been full of ups and downs rollercoaster.

 

My weight is coming off very slowly, veeery slowly.

 

I am eating as I should. Proteins, low carbs. The only thing I am struggling a bit with is sugar. I drink a lot more tea than I used to. My go to “fix” is tea now. And I haven’t been able to switch to sweetener.

 

So I think that is holding me back a bit. And my eating some chocolate every now and then. Chocolate doesn’t make me dump, strangely so. And it is definitely an upper.

 

Something in which I feel I am in short supply of lately. My mental state is weirdly messed up, but perhaps I am getting better. Seeing my psychologist every week now and I think it is helping, although I find the whole process quite unsettling.

 

I don’t really like to talk about my feelings and emotions, I realised. I shy away from it.

A lot of small little issues coming to the fore, the more weight I lose.

 

Anyhoo.

 

Going to see my psychiatrist on Monday again. Hopefully he’ll up my medicine. The anxiousness and nervousness is still there. It is better, but sometimes it grips me at my throat.

And then I drink a sip of benylin cough syrup. Not good. Not good at all, I know that. I am after the codeine. It spaces me out and I feel zombified and that makes me feel happy.

So there is a problem.

What, I don’t know yet. But there’s a problem.

I suspect that I actually might be suffering from borderline personality disorder. But my psychologist is weary to make a diagnosis. Which is also frustrating a bit as I need to know what is “wrong” with me, so that I can make peace with it and learn how to cope with it.

Now it is just in the air.

Feeling weeeeeird.

 

But happy about my weightloss. Although I hoped it was more by now. I’ve lost a 100 pounds (45kgs). But I still have about 35kgs to go. Oi vey.

The weird depressed state anxious place I am in is also keeping me away from the gym. It is as if I just don’t have energy to lift my arm. I fall asleep when I get home and then I can’t sleep at night. I just don’t have the strength to go to the gym.

 

It’s crazy how one’s head can mess with everything about you.

 

I am talking in circles. I am sad today. My hero died last night. Rest in peace, uTata Madiba.

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wandering down the yellow brick road

In less than a week I am 7 months post-op.

 

What a ride it has been thus far.

Difficult to wrap my head around it. I am a changed person. Mostly for the better. I am healthier, I feel more at ease in my skin, I can breathe better, I sleep better, I WALK better.

 

Sometimes the road still ahead gets to me though. I am sure it has some to do with my mental state. A lot of mental issues has come to the surface.

Things I obviously have been burying under a ridiculous amount of weight.

Trying to cope, trying to stay on course in my life, trying to deal with being on edge permanently, combating my perpetual state of anxiety.

And here it is, the big revelation of it all. I am dead on sure that I “suffer” from Borderline Personality Disorder.

And binge-eating was one of the ways to cope.

I am seeing a psychologist every week (and still regular check-ups to my psychiatrist as well) and it has helped a lot.

She hasn’t confirmed Borderline to me yet, but I can pick it up. In the way we talk about things, what comes up, her reaction – her words. I just know it in my gut.

So yeah, big and hectic things. Things that make the weight loss itself take a back-seat for a while. Something I don’t want to happen, but inevitably does.

So, I just try and deal with it.

I am glad for this surgery. It has made me come to a point where I can stand up and face my demons, look them squarely in the face. Not backing off. Not backing down. Not hiding away. Not eating myself in oblivion to try and attain numbness.

And albeit it a scary journey, it is a necessary one. And one I am so glad I am finally able to face, and travel on, to be able to reach my end destination.

 

FIVE MONTHS OUT!

So today marks my 5 months post op halfway house.

 

And where am i?

 

Physically I am in quite a good space. I have lost 37 kilograms. That is almost 40!  That’s crazy man. I want to start lauging when I see that, I mean, who loses 40 kilograms? Definitely not ME, other people, I READ about, not me, not in a million years.

 

And here I am. Almost 40kgs lighter.

 

I am only halfway there, though. Another 40 to go. But somehow 40 does seem a bit more doable than 80 (seeing I have done 40 now and KNOW I can do it).

What a crazy thought.

 

Would it seem really horrible of me if I stated here that I think it should be more? That I could’ve done more? Because you know what, I could’ve. I’ve sabotaged myself here and there over the past 5 months. I only started exercising about two weeks ago (yeah, that is a shocker, for various reasons). I should’ve started a month post op, imagine where I could’ve been?

Also, I tend to eat chocolate. That is my only little pleasure left, and I indulge in it sometimes. Not all the time, and no not nearly as much as before the op.

 

But still it is there. And following the rules – it shouldn’t be. It doesn’t help that I don’t dump on chocolate (lucky me!!). but I will dump (or rather, go into a state of disarray) on apples.

 

So it frustrates me. The weight is coming off much more slowly now, and I want it to go faster. I don’t really know what I am feeling, to tell you the truth.

Something I have to say – and I realise this time and again – the biggest obstacle and challenge is mental. It is not physically. It is not the eating and the exercising and the not eating.

It is what is going on in your head. Well, for me that is, at least.

I get very emotional. I freak out. I cry. I get despondent. I get difficult. I cry. Sometimes I am elated, don’t get me wrong, I am not saying this op is putting one into a depression. God, not at all, do you know how much happier a human being I am for having this op? a lot!  I am just saying – it plays some mental tricks on you and it takes some time to get your ducks in a row.

Things can go haywire, but I suppose it is my hormones and especially also that I don’t have my “crutch” of food anymore. It is like the carpet was pulled from right under me. Things get bad for little Obeasta, and she scurries along to her corner in the dark and go eat something for comfort.

Now something bad happens and Obeasta don’t know where to go.

 

So my biggest wish and hope is that the psychological part of this whole trip of bariatric surgery gets sorted a bit. I find that I don’t really have any support on this front. Supposedly we have, it is in the paperwork, but nah, it doesn’t feel that way.

Also, I wasn’t very comfortable with the psychiatrist we had to see beforehand for the psych eval. That meeting had me feeling that something was lacking. I don’t know. Some understanding? Support? I am quite the observer and consider myself a good judger of people (jeez that sounds bad), but I just knew that I will not be returning to this man for guidance and help in the future.

And that leaves me out in the cold, because where do I turn?

I’ve been looking for psychologists specialising in patients with bariatric surgery and I haven’t found any. Here in Cape Town.

In the papers we received, a name was given of a lady that is part of the bariatric support team. In fact her details are still on there. But I haven’t seen her, not ONCE at any meeting or anything. I also heard from more than one patient that they had quite an upsetting experience with her and didn’t go back.

So where does this leave me?

I feel I need to talk to someone about everything that is happening to me. And also, how to develop strategies to relearn ways of dealing with issues. Obviously I’ve dealt with it incorrectly in the past (read: eating it all quiet).

The mental part of this journey is so so so important and honestly, it is the thing I struggled with most. The bariatric team behind me are so splendid, and did such an excellent job, it saddens me that this one part of it is falling behind so much. Especially as it is one of the most important parts. I need to sort my head out if I want this to be a success in the long term!

 

HEEEEEEEELP!

 

(but otherwise all is good in Obeastaland, thanks for asking.)