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OK so its the holidays and now they are over. Every year I miss my family more since I can't spend time with them. They live in a different state and its always been a struggle for me since it was my decision to move. I have lived here since 1997 but I had my sister here when I moved, so not so hard. Now my closest family member is about 5 hours away (my daughter). I am married to a very loving man for 18 years, but not so big on holidays. OK enough background.

I had surgery on 9/16/20 after 3 cancellations over the last year. So I had plenty of education about what to expect and lots of time to think about it. I thought I was very ready and would breeze right through recovery. Boy was I wrong!! I don't regret having the surgery, but really thought that it will be easy afterwards. I'm mostly referring to emotional preparing. The first two months of controlled eating is fine. Sure you can't wait to add in other foods and get bored, but when you add in the other foods is when the challenge starts. I thought I was so prepared to face those foods and felt so strong that I wouldn't go back to the old ways, but I am still struggling with those cravings. I was convinced that I would be one of those that would have the cravings disappear, like some do, but it isn't working that way for me.

I can't get myself into this new way of life and am challenged every day with what I KNOW is right vs what my mind is telling me to do. I wake up every morning with a great attitude and track my Breakfast, but the rest of my day just falls apart....no tracking, eating whatever and whenever, trying to tell my hands to listen to what my brain is telling them, but it just doesn't work. Every day I go to bed in tears because I know that I messed up again. I am going to seek a good counselor to help me with this, because I do want it to work and I want to be healthy. But please, if you are going to have surgery, and think you know how it will be, don't be so sure of yourself and make sure you don't think that you know how it will be.


Get some very good counseling before your surgery. I wish I would have gone every week for 3-4 months before my surgery. Also, don't think you should over indulge everything that you think you won't get to eat after surgery, before you have your surgery. You will be able to eat most of what you have been eating, just not as much. And it will be cooked healthier. Start that way of eating prior to your surgery so you will be in the habit of eating that way after the first 2 months of controlled eating after your surgery. If I had it to do over, that is what I would do. Right now, my old way of eating is taking away the glory that I wanted after my surgery. Please, please, please don't fall into the eating style that got you to where is needed this surgery. It's going to take me a while to get back on track.....

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Onmyway1956, I applaud you for your clear, honest sharing. For many of us, the challenging moments, routines, less than ideal habits that we faced preop do present themselves again as life normalizes, postop. For me, it is one day at a time and sometimes one moment at a time.

I’ve posted a reminder note on my mirror that simply states “RISE ABOVE”, for in those moments, there is not always time nor inclination for lengthy self talk. Doesn’t work 100% of the time, but does force me into Conscious Choice vs the unconscious reaching for that walked me into trouble.

My 2021 motto is to “RISE ABOVE” those moments seeking to derail me. When I’m with others who are able to indulge, I remind myself to resist, and realize the fact that within X amount of minutes their indulgence WILL be over and my resistance muscle WILL be strengthened. Be strong, be patient, be laser focussed on why I am seeking better health.

Sending love and all best wishes to you, don’t give up! And thanks again for sharing.

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It is really hard to make these changes, even with surgery! Most of us have developed poor eating habits over the course of a lifetime, and we can't change them overnight. Good for you for taking action to get counseling and get back on track. This is a great time to resolve to make the changes you need for your health.

How do you track your food? If you haven't tried an app like MyFitnessPal or Baritastic, those make it so much easier than tracking on paper. I don't know if this will help you, but something that has helped me is to make it a personal rule that I always track my food BEFORE I eat it. I often plan out what I'm going to eat for the whole day, and then I don't even need to worry about tracking it as long as I only eat what I entered.

I probably have it a little easier than most people because I live alone, so I'm not constantly around food that I shouldn't eat. It is hard on those occasions that I am, like when I'm at work and people bring in treats to share. I also live in a rural area where there aren't many restaurants around, but I even have a hard time when I drive to the city and have to pass all of the restaurants I love. It might be easier for you to avoid temptation if you can physically stay away from the foods that tempt you. If possible, get rid of the foods that aren't on your plan. I assume your husband eats some foods that aren't on your plan, but maybe you could keep those foods in a different cabinet so you don't have to look at them. Also, just stay out of the kitchen as much as possible.

Do you use Pinterest? I have found lots of healthy meal ideas there -- things that I am excited about making and eating. Since I am eating small portions, one recipe can make a bunch of meals to freeze for later, so I have a freezer full of individual portions that I can just throw in the microwave. When you have food you like that fits into your plan, there's a lot less temptation to go off track.

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Thank you for your honest sharing. It will help many here. It's a struggle and so much of our eating problems are emotional and mental health related (boredom, stress, anxiety, depression, worry) that counseling really helps.

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I am so impressed with your honesty! I think it will help many people as they get ready for this major change.

I am almost a year out, and I find I have to work hard every day to not fall into my old eating habits. I know by now some of these habits should be second nature, but I have 60 + years of bad habits to break.

A couple of things that have helped me: I try to always have an easy Protein, that I like the taste of, on hand, so when I need to eat something it is not horrible! The key for me is to have it taste good! For me those Proteins include: Rotisserie chicken salad, Hard Boiled Egg with a little salt, Siggi Yoghurt, Kibo chips and an OZ. of cheddar cheese.

I also have found a herbal tea or 2 that I look forward to with some fake sugar (I use Stevia because I can't stand the taste of most of the others). I have a large mug (24 oz.) and I make tea every morning and sip on it until it is gone. That has really helped me regulate my mealtimes while I am working remotely every day!

Finally, I took the advice of many and find a reason to move every hour, even if it is a 5 minute walk in the neighborhood or even around my house if it is raining! That way your metabolism remembers we aren't in a coma! lol. When I am on work calls I pace around the house, which confuses my dogs and annoys my family, but it keeps me moving. I am lucky because I love to hike, something I had given up on when I was heavier. If there is an activity you enjoy, even if it dancing to one song on the radio, or doing some calisthenics for 5 minutes, or walking in place during tv commercials, it will help up your metabolism and improve your mood.

Before WLS, by a couple of years, my lifelong problems with anxiety, which I always wrote off to work stress, or just general irritability, got diagnosed. I take an anti-depressant with an anti-anxiety component, and after a couple of months on it I felt like a new person! Not for everyone, of course, but mental health care is HEALTH CARE.

Good luck to you! I hope you find a good counsellor who understands disordered eating, and who understands WLS.

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You can get back on track. Anything that messes with one’s regular routine, the holidays, can make things rough. My surgery was 11/9, and I’ve been doing pretty good, I can ignore the pangs of wanting stuff, but my husband was off work for almost 3 weeks when our entire house picked up COVID somewhere, we don’t even go anywhere so we aren’t sure where we got that little blessing. Anywho, the last week he was home he felt good, but he couldn’t go back until he actually tested negative, and since he felt good he was home snacking constantly and it was really messing with my daily vibe. I didn’t want to exercise in front of him or walk on the treadmill, I was constantly pulling my hand back from a snack I didn’t even want but was merely there...it was tough. I was soooo glad when he went back to work and the kid’s and my day got back to normal. I’m in my groove again, but I get what you are talking about, and you can and will get back into the place you want to be!

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I too am finding that I have cravings for the unhealthy foods I love. I don't keep those foods in the house - my husband's diabetic so we wouldn't have them in for him either, which makes it far easier to resist the cravings. I'm aware however that part of this is that mentally I feel I'm still "dieting" i.e. not at my goal weight. Once (hopefully) I reach goal weight I know I'm going to find it really difficult not to fall back into old habits. I need to deal with this. Thanks for your post which helps me know it's not just me who struggles.

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17 hours ago, OnMyWay1956 said:

OK so its the holidays and now they are over. Every year I miss my family more since I can't spend time with them. They live in a different state and its always been a struggle for me since it was my decision to move. I have lived here since 1997 but I had my sister here when I moved, so not so hard. Now my closest family member is about 5 hours away (my daughter). I am married to a very loving man for 18 years, but not so big on holidays. OK enough background.

I had surgery on 9/16/20 after 3 cancellations over the last year. So I had plenty of education about what to expect and lots of time to think about it. I thought I was very ready and would breeze right through recovery. Boy was I wrong!! I don't regret having the surgery, but really thought that it will be easy afterwards. I'm mostly referring to emotional preparing. The first two months of controlled eating is fine. Sure you can't wait to add in other foods and get bored, but when you add in the other foods is when the challenge starts. I thought I was so prepared to face those foods and felt so strong that I wouldn't go back to the old ways, but I am still struggling with those cravings. I was convinced that I would be one of those that would have the cravings disappear, like some do, but it isn't working that way for me.

I can't get myself into this new way of life and am challenged every day with what I KNOW is right vs what my mind is telling me to do. I wake up every morning with a great attitude and track my Breakfast, but the rest of my day just falls apart....no tracking, eating whatever and whenever, trying to tell my hands to listen to what my brain is telling them, but it just doesn't work. Every day I go to bed in tears because I know that I messed up again. I am going to seek a good counselor to help me with this, because I do want it to work and I want to be healthy. But please, if you are going to have surgery, and think you know how it will be, don't be so sure of yourself and make sure you don't think that you know how it will be.


Get some very good counseling before your surgery. I wish I would have gone every week for 3-4 months before my surgery. Also, don't think you should over indulge everything that you think you won't get to eat after surgery, before you have your surgery. You will be able to eat most of what you have been eating, just not as much. And it will be cooked healthier. Start that way of eating prior to your surgery so you will be in the habit of eating that way after the first 2 months of controlled eating after your surgery. If I had it to do over, that is what I would do. Right now, my old way of eating is taking away the glory that I wanted after my surgery. Please, please, please don't fall into the eating style that got you to where is needed this surgery. It's going to take me a while to get back on track.....

Have you ever considered maybe writing this down. Maybe your calling is writing? I had a pretty rough child hood and went to counseling and psych Drs and all kinds of situations and in the end I wrote and I wrote and a friend read what I wrote and recommended I send it to a publisher and I laughed at her because I never thought of writing a book. I have since wrote two books.

I no longer struggle with my childhood demons and now I have the strength to get ahold of my weight issues as well.

Maybe writing about your food addictions and getting healthy will help you realize how to get back on track. Not saying you have to send it into publishers or anything but if you want to you never know!!!! People need to know about the struggles of WLS. WLS is not a magic trick, its super hard work and dedication. You will get on track but think about writing, your honesty and writing style is super nice reading. :)

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Thanks for all the positive feedback and support. Its great to know that I'm not alone either. That is one thing that weighs heavy on my food issues....I feel so alone. My husband is disabled and sleeps different hours and long hours than I do. Being alone is really hard for me. I am disabled also, but I have trouble sleeping, so have many hours to myself. I have crafts to do when my hands don't hurt to much, and I have a treadmill that I am just starting to use. My left knee needs to be replaced, but I have 20 more lbs to lose before they will do that.

I am a very positive person and don't dwell on the negatives very often, so when I do they are twice as heavy on me. I know that God is with me and I can get through anything in His time. I wanted to let this out and get on with my losing the lbs. It really helps to put things down on paper instead of holding them inside.

Thanks again for your responses....lots of good ideas and suggestions!!!

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Thanks a lot for sharing your experience, it would really be a big help to a lot of people here in this forum including me who have yet to decide on whether to have the surgery or not

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On 1/11/2021 at 2:11 AM, Surgerynx said:

Thanks a lot for sharing your experience, it would really be a big help to a lot of people here in this forum including me who have yet to decide on whether to have the surgery or not

So it's been a couple months and I'm still struggling. But, TO ME, the struggling part is good. That may not sound like a positive to a lot of you but if I'm struggling it means my mind is still set on succeeding and not giving up or into the food. I don't want this post in any way to take away from the benefits of having the surgery. I would do it again, but be more prepared for when real food comes back in my diet. That is/was the purpose for my post. I am trying to let you know to PRACTICE eating the way that you will be eating after the liquid part of your post surgery diet is over. Then you will have a better idea of what to expect. Just remember that your stomach will be much smaller and you will not be able to eat as much at a time. That alone will help the weight come off and help you control the eating.

I am still working on the type of foods that I am eating, BUT, and listen to this next part of my sentence, even though my food choices aren't the healthiest, I AM STILL LOSING WEIGHT!!!! I have a really touchy stomach that isn't allowing me to drink Protein Drinks, and I have been through most of them in the market. BUT I found Pre Protein 20, a Liquid Protein collagen. This protein I mix 1 oz. (1 oz = 20 grms of protein) with a 28 ounce bottle of Water, and a pkg of Crystal Light. Dump this over a 24 ounce thermos of ice and shake. I get 56 to 60 ounces of water every day (which I was no where near that amount before) and it doesn't upset my stomach. This is the only way that I have been able to get my protein and water requirements.

I will not give up on my new way of life and will continue my challenge of making this work for me. I didn't get this surgery to fail, but to become more healthy and it is working!!!!

BTW- I found a great counselor but only have seen her once last week, so most of what I wrote happened prior to me seeing her. Can you see how unstoppable I am going to be now that I have some help.....LOL

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I love my bariatric therapist. She's a HUGE part of working this life change (for me, anywho) and has been absolutely indispensible to finding a new normal that isn't extreme. There's a lot of lifescript to rewrite...to get this food addiction thing worked out in my case. Like all relationships....part of the relationship is listening and compromise. I listen to food and my body and try to make sensible compromises now. My big thing has been getting away from the extreme thinking where food is concerned. I tend to go....to hell with it, I'll eat whatever I want OR I must control and document every micronutrient and be PERFECT! For years, there was no inbetween and there was no winning. Making peace...learning to really be accountable, but reasonable....has been the biggest part of the work for me. Therapy has helped with this bigtime.

Edited by Creekimp13

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