|Recently, I visited with an old friend to celebrate her child's first birthday. We had only seen one another a few times over the past couple of years and it's amazing the changes that can occur in such a relatively short amount of time.
Over time, the friendship has gone from daily interaction, to infrequent phone calls, to a hurried text message every few months. This is nothing unusual about what can happen over the lifetime of a friendship. However, what is shocking are the physical changes that you hear about but until you see it with your own eyes, it's difficult to comprehend.
What I am referring to is weight. My friend went one way and I went the other.
I've mentioned before that I quit smoking almost five years ago and packed on the pounds. (That's how I became the MAFW.) I have been trying (halfheartedly) to lose the weight almost since day one. I usually make it to about 17 pounds until something happens: I lose interest; I get bored; I go on vacation; a major holiday or whatever. And before you know it, I have gained it all back.
Over the last month, I have changed doctors and had my current insulin regimen turned upside down: three times. I've been threatened with blood pressure medicine and other dire predictions if I don't lose weight. All the same things I was told when I needed to quit smoking. I did that and then I got fat, for whatever reason.
In my mind's eye, until recently, I didn't really see the person staring back at me in the mirror; I still saw my before stop smoking self grinning back. One day, I was walking behind a large person and saw our reflections mirrored through the front window of a store and was very surprised: In my mind, I had thought to myself that I'm glad I wasn't that big. On seeing the reflection, however, apparently I was.
This all brings me back to my friend. My friend had decided to combat a recent weight gain and an early diagnosis of diabetes by having weight loss surgery. This is something I had considered as well. I had only seen her once since the surgery and that was when she was pregnant. I was totally shocked at how thin she now was (size 6) and commented that she looked almost frail. What surprised me even more was her response: When she looked in the mirror, instead of the person she now was, she still saw the large, overweight version.
To go through all that and still see your old self; that's not acceptable at all and definitely not an option for me.