There are numbers everywhere.
Thirteen. The age I was when I went on my first diet because a dance teacher said I was fat. (I wasn’t.)
Ten. The number of weeks since my gastric sleeve surgery.
Three-eighty-three. The most I’ve ever weighed.
But the number I want to talk about today is 45.
As of today, I’ve lost 45 pounds…and it’s significant because I have gained and lost these same 45 pounds twice in the last two years. I would push and struggle and cry and use every ounce of my energy to lose it and for some reason I’d run out of steam around the 45 pound mark. Months of eating boring food, working out my 383 pound body until I got stress fractures in my feet, and guilt tripping myself for being so fat in the first place would finally take its toll…and I would limp to the couch and call for pizza. Or grab a candy bar. Or curl up on the couch with a pint of mint chip and watch “The Biggest Loser” until I cried.
Those of you who’ve been fans of my blog for a while know how hard I’ve tried in the past. The ups, the downs, and the conflict I felt as I finally considered gastric sleeve surgery. It hasn’t been an easy road – but the day I decided to have surgery, I knew one thing for sure: failure would no longer come so easily. (Failure is possible, by the way…but that’s a blog for another day.)
I remember the nurses at the hospital smiling at me during my pre-op appointment and asking brightly “Are you excited?”
No, I said to myself. I’m about to have major surgery. I’m going to go through a lot of pain. My life is about to change in many ways – some of which I’m sure I can’t even imagine. No. I wasn’t excited. I was scared. But it was what I knew I needed to do for myself.
Afterwards, many friends asked the same thing as I started to lose weight. Are you excited? No, I still wasn’t – because I was losing the same damn 45 pounds I’d already lost and gained twice in two years. In a way, I felt hugely ungrateful to be not very excited after giving myself such an amazing tool in my battle with my food demons – but you can’t control your feelings…only what you do about them. And so I decided to focus my attention on learning how to live my life as a healthy person.
I’m grateful for every pound I’ve lost, but it’s all felt a bit like an episode of déjà vu that wouldn’t end. Until today.
(And yes…that is the Gandalf stick from The Wet Fart from Hell post in the background…)
I’ve finally wiped the slate clean. Sure, I still have a lot more weight to lose…but these first 45 pounds were the worst. They hung over me like a dark cloud, reminding me of my failure. And they’re gone. They’re finally gone.
I feel free. I feel blissfully and happily free from years of guilt I heaped on myself because I couldn’t get a handle on my food demons.
Okay one more number: Five.
Five more pounds until I’ve lost fifty. That’s territory I haven’t seen in twelve years. Now I feel excited…and a little bit bad ass.
What’s your magic number?
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36 thoughts on “Magic Numbers”
I have been waiting for this number right along with you. I wanted to see you reach it almost as much as you did. Just because I knew that it would mean you had gained so much more than losing 45 pounds. I am incredibly proud of you. You inspire me every day.
And, by the way, LOOK AT YOUR NECK! It’s gorgeous!
Thanks so much, Violet!!! 🙂
:)) such an inspiration to all!!!
Thanks, Christi! ♥
Having my own food issues, reading your blog gives me hope that no matter how many time i fall off the wagon i can get back on!
And you CAN get right back on, R. You can do it. Isn’t it amazing how patient we can be with those we love but not with ourselves? You can do it, dar’lin!
So happy for you! I appreciate your 45. I had been losing and gaining the same 2 lbs. since October. Finally in January I was focused on breaking the cycle. My number was 3. If I could lose weight (even just oz) for 3 weeks in a row and get past the 2 lbs. by losing 3lbs. I would know my plateau was over. My slate is wiped clean too!
Here’s to moving forward!
We got this, Gretchen!! 🙂 Congrats on your victory.
I am so incredibly happy for you. I started following your blog about 2 years ago. In those 2 years, I’ve lost 60 lbs, and going for another 30 🙂 Every time you were successful, I was successful. Every time you slipped back, it motivated me to work harder. I saw how easy it was to get complacent, how easy it was to slip back. You helped to teach me to appreciate every victory, scale or no scale. Thank you for sharing your challenge with us, and motivating more people than you know 🙂
Jenn, congrats on your amazing success! Thank you so much for your support.
You never looked 383…you look awesome! Glad you’re feeling better! You’re a great motivator!
Thanks so much, Nan!
My number is 6. Almost six whole years since my daughter was born and I still have 40 pounds of baby weight to lose. That might sound like vanity pounds to some people, but it’s put a very real strain on my health. I know it’s really mommy weight now, but it’s still hard to face it when food has been my friend for so long!! I’ve always been the chubby duckling, hoping one day I’d finally turn Into a skinny swan. I’ve struggled with the gym – I’ll go hard for a few months, working out and counting calories – but I never see results over a few pounds. I get discouraged. I slack off. I eat.
I’m so inspired by your honesty about the real side of the struggle. It’s no pretty Jillian Michaels telling me to run until I puke in a bucket, either. Hell, I’d welcome that. The real struggle is how lonely it is. How, ultimately, you’re the only one who can do it for yourself. Seeing you make positive choices – and follow through on them! – is so encouraging. Keep up the hard work. You’re making us proud!
It’s not vanity pounds if it really bothers you…and 40 pounds is a significant amount of weight that can affect your health. You won’t find any judgy bitches here, sweetie! You can do this. Thanks for reading!
You look amazing! This is the last time you’ll see those 45 lbs, so kick their asses good as they leave! I’m currently losing the 40 I gained back after losing 75 a few years ago. I’m 16 lbs down so far, and feeling great! You are an inspiration to me and have been for the last 2 years. I’ve gone through my own ups and down along with you, and it’s been nice to read along and feel the love/support/comic relief! Thank you. Now, let’s do this once and for all!
Thanks, Allison!!! Congrats on your hard won 16 pounds. You’re smoke’in it!!!
Right now my I have two numbers: 11 & 66. 11 gets me back down to 355 which was my lowest in years (reached in May 2013).
66 gets me to my pre-baby weight and halfway to my ultimate goal. I am feeling weak and it’s so hard. We are doing Disneyland in just under 5 months and I’m scared of the flying because I’m so big…i don’t want to embarrass my family. I really want to lose 66 pounds in that time. You are doing awesome. You look great. Thanks for your posts. They are real and straight up and we appreciate it.
You’re doing great, Dina!!! I understand the challenge of it all…it’s a hard thing we’re doing. You’re going to do great. ♥
My number is 8. 8 more pounds until I am back at my goal weight. I reached it in 2007, kept it off until 2012. In July, I put myself back on track with a blip the last month. Almost there and want to lose at least 5 more before my trip to the Panama Canal in March.
That’s what it’s all about, though, Melanie…controlling it. Balancing life. It sounds like you’re managing that just fine. Good for you!!!
You look WONDERFUL. I don’t just mean the kind of awesome people look when they lose weight. I am talking about the hair, the makeup, the sparkle in your eye awesome!!!!
Thanks so much, Deldrea!
way to go gorgeous!!!:-)
So happy for you! You look great, you sound great, and maybe, just maybe, you’ve motivated me to move past the plateau where I’ve been stuck to way too long. Thanks so much for sharing your struggle.
Such a great blog….love reading about your journey and every day life! You always make me laugh and think about my choices. So glad the 45 are gone….look out 50!!
Today my number is 192…..my next weight in this little struggle we call “losing it”……at that point I will be done 60 lbs!
Can’t wait to hear you did it, Marti! I know you will. 🙂
I love this post! I didn’t realize I had so many important numbers right now. My first number is 65. I lost 65 pounds last year. Life got turned upside down and I gained 40 back. Since the new year I have re evaluated life and goals and started with the number 100. I really need to lose 100 pounds to get into a healthy weight range, my goal is to do that this year. So far I’m down 20!
You can do it, Brandy!
250 – The last time I really committed myself to losing weight I made it to 255 before I gave up. I want to be at 250. I have 70 lbs to go, but I’ve lost 41 so I’m definitely on the right track. I’m so proud of you for knowing what you want, knowing the tools to get there, and then going for it!
You’re gonna get there, Janet!!!
way to go your doing great i started following you right before you had the surgery . you are such a great motivator i am at 280 want to lose 100 get back to what i was 24 years ago when i got married your doing awesome love following you.
Thanks so much, Shirley!!!
My number will be 50. My surgery date was Jan 21 and I’m down 34 lbs. I’ve noticed changes already, but will be really excited when I pass my first 50 lb loss. There are lots of challenges to this whole experience, but the rewards far out-weigh them. You are an inspiration Dianne! Keep on going with your bad ass self 🙂
Kitty! I’m so glad all is well. 🙂 Go girl!!!
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