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Facing the Bottom of the Ellipse



I'm getting the hang of the "stair-step" pattern to weight loss. My weight levels out for anywhere from four days to a bit more than a week—tiny losses, then bouncing up and down within the range of a pound. Then there come several days of daily losses in the area of a pound a day. The drop seems to be triggered a bit by high-fluid and/or slightly-higher-than-normal calorie days, but I suppose it's chiefly just waiting it out.

Today it was 267.8, the second day of a pound-a-day loss, which means there might be a couple more to come in the next few days, which I guess is why I'm getting for the first time the prickle of imminent anticipation/concern/fear that I'd been expecting about the "home stretch" to 250, which is my lowest adult weight. Part of me never expects to cross that line, no matter what I do. Part of me is trying to make my peace with weighing 250 pounds for the rest of my life, simply because I can't imagine weighing less than that: I've had a sense of boredom with my weight loss lately, which is in part due to the election and my feeling of "who could possibly give a damn about what she weighs when there is this kind of urgently terrible stuff going on in the world?" but I think is also related to a kind of "this is all I get?" sense that's based on the subconscious idea that it's almost over, that 250 is the absolute limit. I have no idea what happens below that—what my face looks like, how much space I take up in the world, how it feels to move around in a body that weighs less than 250 pounds. I am a really, really deliberative human being, and leaps into the unknown are really not my strong suit, which is why it took me as long as it did to have WLS in the first place. But another part of me is excited, bouncing up and down with glee, pulling at the leash with impatience. 

This is going to be a rough couple of months, I think. I don't mean the holidays, although I have a few pragmatic concerns about that, and I'd probably be stupid if I didn't. I mean that there is going to be a lot of breath-holding and second-guessing between here and 250. It also looks like if things do go according to my general pattern, that I might expect to cross that line in early to mid January, so there's something that kind of interests me there about the New Year and this new frontier coinciding. 

Several years back—in 2012—my boyfriend and I shared a sublet for the summer, and it happened to be the summer that marked a change in fortune for his baseball team, the Baltimore Orioles. He couldn't believe that they might actually be kind of good after so many years of being terrible. He was new to New York and looking for work, and he'd listen to the ballgame in the other room of that apartment, which was always glowing red from the neon sign right outside its windows, until he couldn't take it anymore and he'd come and stand in the doorway of whatever room I was in to tell me that maybe, maybe, if they were still above .500 by the end of June, the end of July, the end of August—then he'd believe that they weren't going to tank. It was a confrontation with his years of learned pessimism, which had aggregated into a sense of inevitable failure. (The Orioles made the playoffs that year.)

It's like that. It's a confrontation with my sense of order, with my belief about what the rules of the universe are. Something deeply ingrained in me, something fifteen years old with roots further back still, says that 250 is where I start to gain again, where the ellipse makes its turn and starts heading in the other direction, because lower than 250 does not exist for me. Seeing it start to approach, finding myself squarely in the 260s and both rationally expecting weight loss to continue AND irrationally certain that it can't...it's going to be a push-pull. There's going to be distress in it. There's also not a lot I can do besides take it a day at a time, work the program, and wait. And worry. And try to stop worrying. 

So I'm trying to sit tight. I'm trying to have faith. I'm trying to distract myself. I can feel the pull of the kind of fixation that I've spent my adulthood learning to manage. The thrum of it, absorbing. The fear of getting sucked in. Sixteen different kinds of fear, and not a few kinds of curiosity and excitement. 

One day at a time. Head up, shoulders back, look it in the face and see what you find. See it and confront it. Name it so you don't have to enact it. That's what we're doing here.

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Well spoken. In keeping with your baseball theme, it can happen. I mean, the Cubs won the World Series this year. 

It's unnerving heading into the unknown. Have trust and faith that things are different this time, because they are. Do what you need to do to recalibrate your perspective, because this is real. This is happening. Embrace the possibilities.

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