The Face in the Mirror

I didn’t realize until recently that the face I was seeing when I looked in the mirror wasn’t my own. I didn’t realize that my own reflection was so alien to me. I didn’t realize that my weight had that much of an effect on how I looked to myself. But I know now that it did.

Lately, every time I look in the mirror, I’m starting to look more and more like me again. As the lines of my face become more defined, as the shadows around my collar bone that I didn’t even known I was missing deepen, I am becoming less and less of a stranger to myself. It is as bizarre as it is glorious…and let me tell you, it’s pretty glorious.

I’m still having difficulty with some dietary things. I still want to overeat, just instinctively. I still have a lot of trouble resisting the siren call of sweets. And I think I’m still partially dehydrated from when I had surgery. I know I’m not drinking as much water as my doctor wants me to be, though I do try.

But in the interest of moving forward, I have added a new thing to my daily routine. I have returned to the protein supplements that I was drinking immediately post-surgery in an effort to seriously boost the amount of protein I’m ingesting. This will potentially be beneficial in a few ways. For one, it’s eight extra ounces of fluid. For two, that fluid happens to be milk, and calcium and vitamin D are my friends. And for three, my hair has, as a side-effect of my significantly altered diet, become…a bit less than healthy, shall we say. I was already concerned by the amount I was losing in the shower (this is a totally expected thing for a LAP-Band patient, folks), but it’s lost its luster and its body and it’s gotten really dry and frizzy. Yes, that last part might be due to the fact that it is, well, summer. But those of you who know me should know how concerned I am about this. My hair is a very important thing to me. I’m really hoping that if I keep up the daily protein supplements that, in a few weeks or a month, my hair will be much closer to normal.

In the meantime, I’m putting my hair in a bun quite often and finding myself strangely attracted to the idea of getting a haircut. (Those of you who know me should be a bit surprised at that last…)

My clothes keep getting bigger on me. My skirts are all long enough in the back that I have a train everywhere I go (one can never be too elegant, after all). I’m already on the middle row of hooks on the new bras that I bought just last month. Before too much longer, I’m going to have to invest in some new (to me, at least) shirts, just so I have things that aren’t hanging off of me in unflattering and awkward ways. …and I am once again feeling the urge to costume. I’ve missed that dearly.

My husband bought me some surrogate wedding bands at the convention we were at in the beginning of July. The plain band is already uncomfortably large on me (thankfully they were sterling silver instead of anything really fancy, and of course, like my actual wedding bands, they can be resized). Most of the rest of my rings are too large for me to wear now. It’s a testament to how much weight I’ve lost that my ring size has gone down about a size and a half since February.

I can cross my legs again. I can sit with my legs folded under me again. I can draw my knees up to my chest again. These may all seem like little things, but I missed them all the same. I can’t wait to become more and more flexible as I continue to lose weight.

And not to be too candid, but let’s just say that both my husband and I have noticed a difference when we are enjoying one another’s company.

There have been times lately when a part of me kicks itself for going through the surgery because this part of me just wants to eat. It wants to eat in a way that it considers “normal” (hint: it’s not normal by any healthy definition). I miss being able to eat this way for sentimental reasons (yeah, still dealing with that really freaking weird emotional attachment to food). But when I look in the mirror, or I sit with one of my knees drawn up to my chest, or I take stock of how bony my wrists are getting, or how loosely my rings fit, or any other dozen factors…I enjoy being in this meat so much more than I did five months ago.

And that’s what’s going on with me weight-wise. I just thought I’d check in outside of my status updates. I don’t often have much news to report, honestly, which is probably for the best. But I’m still here and I’m still a work in progress.


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