On the verge

January 29, 2013

Finding My Weigh, a blog by Lexi Alvesteffer.

On the verge…

Here I am, day 13 of the pre-op liquid diet and officially 1 day, 21 hours and 51 minutes (give or take) away from the surgery that will change my life forever. I’m feeling a myriad of emotions these last few days, some I didn’t really expect, like this little bit of sadness that keeps creeping up.

I expressed in my last blog how letting go of this hobby, the “supportive and comforting friend” I have in food is a bit depressing. It’s what I’ve always used to cope, what I’ve always used to celebrate. Food has been a part of everything. It’s a bit like saying goodbye to that “bad boy” ex-boyfriend for good. You know he’s no good for you, you know he hurts you like no one else can, but thinking of the good times makes it sad to cut the ties forever.

Of course I’m not going to stop eating forever, which is really what makes food addiction so difficult. It’s not like heroin; you can’t just go to rehab, medically detox and then avoid the dealers, junkies and bad situations going forward. Food is everywhere: TV, radio, even the Internet is inundated with food commercials. I have to feed my children; hell, even driving down U.S. 10 you’re hit with a barrage of aromas from the fast food joints. And it seems every outing or occasion includes food. Birthdays: cake; anniversaries: dinner out; funerals: luncheon; movies: popcorn; sledding: hot chocolate. I could go on and on.

This liquid diet has taught me that because I can’t stop eating entirely, I have to change my relationship with food. These last two weeks my focus with food has been nourishment not pleasure. Sure, you can doctor up a can of low fat cream soup to taste decent but it’s not exactly exciting or enjoyable. So instead of looking forward to meals with excitement, I’ve been focusing on how much protein I’m taking in (because Doc asks women to have at least 60 grams a day to prevent muscle loss) and eating every few hours in order to keep my energy up.

I learned that lesson the hard way on Day 1 when I was going about my normal routine of barely eating all day and then storing up like a squirrel in winter at night. I felt awful after I did that on the liquid diet and it taught me my lesson and quick. None of this is to say I liked or even easily tolerated the liquid diet. Can you say hungry and cranky?

Now the Doc tells you that the liquid diet is to shrink your liver down in size so he has an easier time accessing your stomach for the surgery. That I believe but I also think this is a test of sorts and a way to slowly ease the patient into changing the way they think about food. I think they make the liver issue a bigger one so you won’t notice that you’re gradually starting to realize that food is there to keep your body strong and healthy, not to be the source of your fun and excitement. So here I am, learning and growing and changing even before the scalpel has appeared.

Well played, Doc. Well played.


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