Lets Back this Up a Bit

So I have been the big boy all of my life…well, as long as I can remember anyway.

I have always been somewhat of a hoss.  Growing up it was more like I was “big” but not necessarily “fat.” Middle school was when I started packing on a few more jiggly cells onto the chassis. But looking back at pictures it seemed more of that “pre-pubescent” baby-fat kinds thing. That’s a thing, right? When I hit puberty, I had a growth spurt and stretched up and thinned out (thinned out being a relative term).

I don’t really remember my weight restricting me from anything in those days, although I do remember that I started having issues with acid-reflux around this time.  I looked like a football player (I should have played football but I was too interested in playing guitar and being in a band). I had the nickname Tank in high school.

High school.  My senior year.  That is when I can remember not wanting to take my shirt off  at the pool or on the boat.

I knew I was gaining some weight, but I still never really felt like I was a fat guy until people started making little comments or jokes.  Then I started realizing that maybe I was not really seeing myself as others did.  It seemed when I looked in the mirror that I saw a normal sized person who was afraid of getting fat.  Not a fat guy yet. Then I left for the university.

I remember one guy in college (who I thought was the same size as me) made a joke about the size 42 pants at Old Navy and how they were in “Hank’s” section. I also remember that college was when I had to start wearing XXL instead of XL. I was drinking a lot of beer and eating whatever the hell I wanted then. I had no worries.  And yet, I still wasn’t being restricted by my size.  And I could still buy close off the rack, albeit it was the largest sizes they had.

I met a girl.  I fell in love. I then married my best friend.

But the worst was yet to come.  I really ballooned after I got married.  I am not sure why that happens but I am guessing that I gained 50-60 pounds in the first three years after my nuptials. At some point I was not able to buy pants at the store.  I had to start getting them online.  I remember hating to tuck my shirt in for work, because of the Apron. I had to go on to medication for acid-reflux.  I got asked who made my shirts, “Omar the Tent Maker?”  Yeah, I didn’t think it was funny either. I was denied a ride on a roller coaster at Six Flags because the bar wouldn’t go over me. Sitting at booths started feeling tighter and tighter.  I broke a couple of chairs. Things were going downhill fast.

Now I will not go into any great detail, but I will say that I started getting REALLY concerned about my weight when there were issues “in the bedroom.”  Not necessarily what you are thinking. Well that’s a lie. There were some performance problems…sometimes…not all the time.  But more specifically I didn’t feel attractive to my wife and I felt like she was not being honest with me about how she was feeling. Then one day, in a very humble and graceful way, she let me know that my weight was affecting our intimacy.

Wow.  The person I love might not be attracted to me if I can’t control myself.

Now let me be clear that that instance was what sparked open conversation between my wife and I about my weight.  We had barely ever talked about it before and I realized that she did care about my health but was afraid to say anything for fear of hurting my feelings.  We had very candid conversations about how I did need to lose weight, and not just because she was concerned about how I looked (although lets all admit that weight does have a lot to do with physical attraction or lack thereof), but because I was setting myself up to die early. At that point I weighed over 350 pounds.

I do not want to leave family and friends behind because of something I could have controlled.  They deserve better.

Well, anyway.  The outcome of that conversation was that I set up an appointment with a Bariatric surgeon. And on that note I will end this post.  Tomorrow I will write about that consultation and what happened afterward…

Until the next time, Peace.



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