This week has been hard for me and I almost feel guilty writing this post but when I told you about my weight loss surgery and subsequent experiences for many months now, I promised I would be open and honest, and this is going to be that. It’s time to throw out the rainbows and unicorns.  It’s time to talk about the other side of things.

10 months 65 pounds

In our society there’s an all obsessive compulsion with weight loss, especially among women.  You find this in many cultures but not all. Women assume that once they hit a magical scale number all will be right and well with the world.  The problem is, it’s not. Sometimes, hitting that number means there are more problems than you started with.  For those of us *raising my hand* who have been overweight our entire lives it’s really, really hard.

I know right, she’s complaining about actually having lost weight. How rude is that??!?

I’m talking about it because there are a lot of problems that I never knew would pop up that are happening, because I know there are other people who have similar experiences.  I want anyone reading this who has experienced this, or who might experience it to know that they shouldn’t feel guilty because;

I feel guilty that I had weight loss surgery.  That I didn’t do it the “right way,” that somehow I didn’t deserve to have help.

I feel guilty that I have had the help and support of Shaklee products over the last 5 months.

I feel guilty that I feel bad that I’ve lost so much weight!

There I said it.

When you go through a radical life change like this I don’t know how you don’t experience immense emotions.  Every part of you changes; your outlook, your focus, your life! There are internal struggles and challenges and there are a lot of effects this can have on your family.  Here are the 3 big things I’m struggling with right now.

1) Feeling Good and Dressing Well.

For my entire life, I have shopped in the “big sizes” at the store.  I have purchased items that were billowy and certainly nothing that might hug my body. I wore big jeans, and over shirts. I’m not saying I was frumpy but I did whatever I could to hide my body because I was so ashamed of, and hated how I looked.  So, now that I have lost enough weight to wear things that most people would consider stylish, I have no clue how to shop for them.  Add to this the need for”modest” clothing and I feel forced back into those big baggy clothes.  The issue is when I’m wearing those things I hate myself, it makes me feel sick, like I’m drowning.  All of those feelings from heavier days come flooding back.  I’m not saying I need to (or want to!) run around in strappy tank tops and short-shorts but I don’t know how to balance modesty and well-fitting clothes that make me feel good to wear.  I will take any and all suggestions/help on this subject!

2) Attention

I’m a very happily married woman.  I love my husband dearly and would never intentionally do something to attract the attention of another man. That being said, I’ve not really ever been in the position where a random man has engaged directly with me in anymore than a very casual business or social encounter. I realize now that I do not know how to respond to men who might be “flirting.” I suppose if I were looking to date someone this might be welcome but as I’m not I don’t even know the right way to deflect this attention.  Thankfully with 2 kids in tow I think most overt attention goes by the wayside.

3) Your “Diet”

With this being Ramadan, a month of fasting (no food or water from sunrise to sunset) for Muslims, I have gotten much disapproval when I share that I am not fasting. There are medical exceptions for not fasting, of which I have one. There are approximately 6 hours a day when we are permitted to eat and drink – about 1/3 of the window I normally have to eat and drink. It’s very safe to say that within a day or two I would wind up in the hospital dehydrated were I to try fasting. There simply is not enough time for me to eat and drink enough to be safe. That being said, some have suggested I put aside “my diet” until Ramadan is done.  I’m not sure which part of “I have had a gigantic portion of my stomach surgically removed” is lost on them. This is not a diet.  I can not physically eat or drink more than my stomach allows. At the end of the fasting day, I can’t sit down and eat a big plate of food, I’d be lucky to drink a 1/4 of a bowl of soup. This lack of understanding extends beyond Ramadan, I’m just feeling the pressure of it even more right now.

I didn’t expect any of these things.  I didn’t prepare, and I don’t really know how I would have prepared. But, this is reality.  But, I don’t want all of this to come off negatively.  I do have several people who have been and continue to be incredibly supportive to me.  They love me today as much as they loved me one year ago. I am able to cry when I’m frustrated and share my feelings knowing that they offer a safe place to vent and words of wisdom to help me go on. I am so glad that I’ve had the help of a great group of women bloggers, as a part of the Shaklee 180 blogger challenge. This group has provided me a place to hear about other people’s struggles and share my own.  Having support when losing weight (and after) is critically important. You will face challenges, they might not be the same as mine, but at the end of the day having someone to hold you up and help you work through issues as they arise, you will come out stronger.

Thanks for being there.

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Disclaimer: This is a sponsored post as part of the Shaklee Corporation blogger program. I have received free products, online support, and incentives for participating. My opinions are my 100% own. People following the weight-loss portion of the Shaklee 180™ Program can expect to lose 1-2 pounds per week.