Saturday, December 20, 2008

Working Toward Normal

Thank you to those who responded to the last message about what "Normal" means to you.  It's always great to hear from my readers and know that I'm not just talking to blank air out there in cyberspace.  
So for the past several months I've been thinking about normal.  In the past couple weeks it seems to have been on my mind a lot more.  Here are some thoughts...
  • When I go to the mall to shop for a new outfit, I want to be able to shop at a normal store and find a variety of outfits to choose from.  Not a plus size shop, not a skinny-minny shop... just a normal old store.   I'm nearly there.
  • When I go to a restaurant I want to eat off the menu and have a portion that is normal.  Not a huge, oversized portion that would feed three people ... and not a tiny WLS portion that I ate in the early months post-op ... I want to eat a normal size portion.   I feel like I am there now.  I don't eat everything on my plate, but it's not like it used to be and I was done after 3 bites, now I eat a normal amount of food.
  • When I'm in a photo of a group of people, I want to be a normal size.  I don't want to be the fattest person and don't need to be the smallest person either.  But I just want to blend in and look normal.  I'm close... I still have trouble recognizing myself in photos sometimes.
  • When I go to the gym I want to fit in with the rest of the athletic people.  I don't want to be the fat chick who's trying too hard and I don't want to be the hot chick who is only there to pick up guys.  LOL!  I just want to feel like I fit in and that I'm normal.  I think I'm actually there ... or pretty close.  I'm still a weakling and need to build some more muscle so I'm working with more than the 5lb free weights, but I feel like I fit in.
  • When I think about food I want to feel normal.  For the past year (longer than that if you count all the pre-op dieting) I have been so focused on food.  Meal planning, counting calories, counting protein grams, making sure I get all my water and vitamins... it's nearly an obsession.  I want it all to be second nature.  I don't want to be so focused on food and my daily schedule.  During this time of weight loss there's still going to be some time to deal with all this ... but one day soon I hope to feel normal with my whole daily eating routine.   I'm not there yet, but I can imagine a day when I feel normal.  It's out there... I'll get there eventually.
  • When I'm at a holiday celebration or party I want to feel normal.  I'm so glad that I have a high threshold for sugar because if I couldn't even nibble on a cookie or a slice of cake for the rest of my life, I'd go insane.  It's normal to eat a Christmas cookie.  It's normal to eat a slice of birthday cake.  Thankfully sugar and sweets are not trigger foods for me, so I can indulge once in a while and feel completely normal. 
Right now, just 13 months after my surgery, I still feel like a freak of nature.  My world has revolved around this major change in my lifestyle.  I've been focused on goals and eating the right foods and establishing new routines in my world.  One day I'd like to get to a point where WLS is not the main focus of my life.  It'll always be there, but I don't want it to be the first thing I think of in the morning and the last thing on my mind before bed.   Yes, I'll always be conscious of my health and making sure I make healthy choices, but one day I hope it's all in the back of my mind while I focus on the rest of my life.
I'm working toward normal.  In some areas I'm there.  In other areas I have a ways to go.  But overall I'm happy with where I am and proud of all I've accomplished. 

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