Friday, November 2, 2012

Wherein I post about my weight... again...

I've noticed that Facebook is good for pithy comments and quick observations. But blogs are good for historical documentation. Over the years, when I've needed to look back at results, numbers, and other important touchstones, it's been either LJ or other blogs where I've been able to find the most accurate information. This time, it's about my weight. Like every other American woman, my weight is a pressing concern for me. I've made peace with the fact that I will never be Hollywood Thin. My body just won't have any of that. Much like my hair won't tolerate being dyed blonde. I will always have big hips, and I'm fine with that. I've accepted the fact that my Normal is in the 170-180 range. In 2004, I hit my low point of 168. I think I got back down there again for a couple of days in 2009. Trouble is, over the last couple of years, my weight has been slowly creeping upward. When I started the HealthKwest back in February, I was up to 195 pounds. I lost 10 pounds over those 2 months, but then I pretty much rebelled and gained all of it back, plus some. Yesterday, I went to the doctor, and the scale said 211. Yeah, no bueno. And in looking over my history, there's one pivotal thing that brought my weight up, and drove it down again during the low periods: Alcohol. When I got the gastric bypass in 2003, the surgeon told me that alcohol was off-limits for the first year after the surgery. And for that year, the pounds dropped off and stayed off. I started drinking again in October 2004, and the pounds started coming back on. In 2008, I realized that my intake was becoming a bit excessive, and I started going to AA meetings. I set a sobriety date, collected the colorful chips, and enjoyed 18 months of sobriety. I also went on Weight Watchers. Hence the second low point. And then, I relapsed. The good excuse I had was the death of Bert Pfeiffer. It's just an excuse, nothing really noble about it. But it was the start. On October 30, 2011, I realized that the relapse was becoming a problem. I even made a note of it on my phone - I had 628 days on the wagon prior to my relapse, and on that date, I'd had 636 days off the wagon. I decided to try sobriety again. That effort lasted exactly 8 days. For the next year, my sobriety came in sporadic 1-2 day stretches, which got further and further apart. The biggest stretch I had was 2 weeks - which was this past August, while I was in the hospital with a broken wrist. To my credit, I was stone sober when I fell and broke my arm. But I will admit that I spent those four days in the hospital wishing I could drown my boredom and pain in beer. By the time I got out of the hospital, the nurses had taught me how to get to sleep on my own again, and I made some good starts toward living sober. But then I went to a party over Labor Day weekend, and I sampled someone's drink. It was their own recipe, and they were very proud of it, so I had a sip. That was supposed to be all. But it wasn't. By the end of the night, I was drinking beers. Which brings us to today. Or, more accurately, the last three days. October 30, 2012, I had finished five consecutive days of Lots Of Drinking - all at home, by myself. Lots of beer, lots of wine. All during non-working hours. And I kept telling myself, "I'll get back on the wagon. I'll do it. Just not today." And I looked at that note on my phone. Same date, one year later. Yesterday, I went to my primary care doctor. Who also noticed the number on the scale. He mentioned it, and offered to let me use my broken arm as an excuse for not working out. Except I said, "Yeah, and I've also been drinking." "Is it a problem?" he said. "It's becoming one." I replied. And that was the first time I'd said it out loud to anyone. And it sparked a flood of emotion. Most people, when they hit bottom, have some sort of traumatic event. They get arrested for DWI, or they hurt their kids, or they lose a job. My bottom was stepping on a scale. I suppose that makes me the most shallow alcoholic in the world. But whatever gets me back on the wagon, huh?

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