Wednesday, May 2, 2012

One Week!

The countdown is on!! One week from now I will be home recovering from surgery...Crazy!! I didn't think that this day would ever come.

First...I didn't think it would come because I never thought I would have made the decision to change my way of living. I never thought I'd lose over 160 pounds. Although, I never really thought about any of it. I don't remember thinking I was destined to live in my former body forever. I don't remember thinking about my future weight much...If at all.  I do remember being unhappy, having low self-esteem, and not liking what I looked like. It took me a while to do something about it, for good. I tried off and on, various methods, some worked short-term, some I quit way too soon because I didn't see change fast enough.

Second... When I started losing weight I didn't really have any expectations. I just decided I'd change. And I did. I didn't have a set pound goal. I didn't even weight myself very often. I just ate healthy and exercised, and noticed the change in my appearance and clothes. I didn't think about what I would look like. I didn't think about having excess skin hanging around. I didn't think I'd ever consider liposuction. Once I started working I just thought that I would continue to get smaller everywhere. Well, as my surgeon told me, for my thighs...I can exercise all I want but those fat cells aren't leaving on their own. Enter liposuction.

I always thought lipo was cheating. That people could just exercise a little more and burn the fat, get into shape. I know that cellulite is there, but that's not really the part of it I was looking at. I was just considering the fat.  I found it somewhat annoying when thin people would get lipo because they thought they were fat. Yes, I made a judgement. Yes, I was wrong...Well in part. I'm sure there ARE people who get procedures like crazy and they don't need them...Of course no one NEEDS plastic surgery; we all want it. So, no matter who it is, there is something that the person doesn't like about himself or herself. I know there are extreme cases where people become addicted or they want procedures that many doctors won't do because they truly shouldn't have them done.  Those cases probably aren't that frequent (total guess; no research done on my end). There's a difference in changing something that you physically cannot, and having psychological issues that cause you to be addicted to something or cause you to strive for the unhealthy.

My body looks, I feel, like it's been through a war. And, it kind of has...I was in a war with myself and my body was wounded in the process. It stretched too far. I allowed too many fat cells to form, and grow.  I lived like that for several years. Then I decided to do something about it.  Those fat cells started to shrink. I was burning the fat away.  Finally! I was winning.  However, those years of losing left scars behind. Excess skin. The fat cells on my thighs did strange things. They all shrunk, to a point. I'm sure some were burned away. My thighs are much smaller, however, they look....Awful. So... I have a choice. I can live with the skin, and bizarre (in my opinion) looking thighs and those can be my scars. I can stare at myself and not like how I look, which, let's face it isn't good for anyone.  Or I can have surgery and be left with smaller scars; scars that, like the things I can't change, will never fade. They'll always be there to be a reminder of the war that I put my body through.

I'm sure that because it's my body, these areas look worse to me than others. I've had people tell me that I don't need it....That I look good without it. Every single time I hear that, I want to hug them. They're right. I don't need it. And I love them for thinking I look good without it.  Even more, I love it when they say that I was pretty before but that they're proud/impressed with what I've done.

Speaking of how people have reacted, I have to post this... I thought it was cute.  Last night my Mom was telling me that my Nonie told her that sometimes when she's watching TV and sees a cute guy, she thinks that I could have a guy like that; that I'm beautiful. An actor!? Oh Nonie, I love you!!  I love my family...So, so much (not just for little compliments like that but because they are nothing less than super fantastically amazing).

Back to surgery... I've changed my opinion about cosmetic procedures. I'm much less judgemental than I used to be. Why? Because I understand it. In fact, NOW I am on the opposite end. I've had a few.... Unpleasant reactions. Naturally everyone has opinions. Some feel that if you want surgery that means you're seeking a perfect body. I am not. I do not expect to wake up from surgery next week, leave the hospital, and go a photo shoot with Victoria's Secret. I'll have swelling, I'll be wrapped up like a mummy. I'll have stitches. I'll have bruises. I'll have a super sexy drain (okay, so that part I'm SURE VS would be interested in -- sarcasm).  I'll be swollen for a while. I'll check in for my photo shoot a month post-op.  Okay, honestly, I will NEVER be in the VS catalog or walk their runway. I'm realistic.  This surgery is not going to transform me into a super model. It's just going to help me to be the best physical me. I don't expect perfection. I just expect to be rid of what I don't like.

I often wonder what it is about people being anti-plastic surgery.  I think back to how I was and.... I think I just didn't understand what it was like to be in the position to want to change something that no matter what you do you cannot change.  We all have imperfections. Some say to leave alone the imperfections that we have. God made us as we are and we should accept that. In my case, God did not make me fat. I made myself fat. Then I made myself...Smaller. I did not understand why someone would desire this type of surgery because I was never in the position to consider it.

I have a friend who had lipo and I didn't think she needed it. I didn't even notice what she didn't like about her thighs. I thought she was crazy... I thought she looked thin and gorgeous.  She didn't though, at least not her thighs. That's the key - it is how we see ourselves, not how the world sees us. She didn't NEED it, but she wanted it. She felt better about herself after she had it done. 

I also wonder if it's, in part, jealousy.  I didn't understand why someone would want surgery because I was no where near being in the physical condition that surgery would be an option....Except for bariatric surgery but that definitely was not an option - for me. I had negative feelings about that too. I'm not sure why. Probably because I was scared. No way would I have gone through a surgery to lose weight. Now that I've seen that it CAN be done on your own, I'm glad I never did it. But if someone else wants to, then I'd support them. What's right for one isn't right for all....Whether it be weight loss surgery or plastic surgery.

Back to the jealousy component...  I think that was jealous because my body wasn't a body that could have plastic surgery. For me it couldn't be an option. So, in addition to understanding it, I was jealous of people who were small enough to be able to go through it.  I thought they didn't NEED it because, in my eyes, they already looked wonderful. So maybe it's for physical reasons. Maybe they aren't at the size where this is an option for them. Or maybe they just can't afford it. I mean, I'd be annoyed if someone was having something done that I'd like to have done but I couldn't afford it. That annoyance is a type of jealousy. I'm not signing a check the day of surgery. I financed an amount for a year, so that I don't have any interest to pay, that I'll make monthly payments on. I can't make the payments (or the amount that was put down) completely on my own, so my parents are helping. They put the money down and will pay half of my monthly payment. I'm fortunate that they can do that. However, after my payments to CareCredit are done, I'll be making payments to my parents.  My Dad said that he "is NOT" paying for this. Of course he said that about grad school to and he's been paying for that.... Thanks Daddy! I'm kidding though...I'm not expecting or asking for them to pay any part of it without me paying it back. This is something I'm choosing to do as a reward to myself for the changes I've made and the work I've done.

Whatever their reasons, people are against plastic surgery. That's okay. I actually don't mind when people share their opposing views. They're not me. They don't know how I feel, what I think, or what my naked body looks like (and they never will!). Some people like to fight and really share their opinions and that's okay. I'll hear what they have to say, but in the end I've made a decision and my mind won't be changed.

Remind me I said that when I'm in pain next week and saying "whhhyyyy did I do this?"  I'm sure after the pain subsides and I am feeling better, I'll remember why I did it.  I won't have regrets.

No matter what it is; surgical scars, tattoos (I have a few of those too - small ones), body piercings (I have a scar from an old belly piercing too), stretched ears...Any physical thing we've done that might leave a mark on us....They're what we choose. we make the choices that we desire, for our bodies. We alter our own appearance. For me, I'd rather live with surgical scars than excess skin and thighs that I don't like to look at. Scars fade. And to me, a scar is prettier than what I look at now.

I know I post a lot about songs and song lyrics, but here's part of the lyrics from another one (I may have posted it before)....

"I know these corners, I know these streets.
The curb-side Prophet there yelling at me;
He can save my soul for a drink and a dollar.
Yeah, he's yelling about my tattoos,
But we all live with the scars we choose
They might hurt like hell,
but they all make us stronger.

If you want it
Come and get it
If you want it, come and get it and understand
You take me as I am."

--Sugarland ; "Take Me As I Am"

XOXO

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