I heart Frances Kuffel

I’ve been working seriously on weight loss for a little over a year now. There was the big build up to surgery (doctors, scheduling, insurance approval…). Then there was Surgery Day, adjusting to life, learning how this works, starting to exercise.

I feel like I’m in some weird no man’s land phase now. This isn’t new any more, it’s my life. There’s nothing unusual or weird about it, nothing out of the ordinary.

I’ve adjusted.

So now what? What do I do about the fact that while I’ve lost 127 pounds, I still have this overwhelming urge to eat that is not associated with physical hunger. What do I do about the fact that it takes just ONE wrong meal, and I’m on a cycle of de-carbing for the next 3 days? These problems haven’t gone anywhere. Not with surgery, not with counseling, not with exercise. I’m aware of them, and that’s important. Being aware means not letting the urge to eat control my eating behavior. But it’s still there.

A good book arrived just in time to help me deal with that funk I was getting into. Frances Kuffel’s Passing for Thin was delivered by my county’s Books by Mail system. In 3 hours, I’d nearly finished the book.

I related to young Frances. Losing weight Frances. But somewhere in those last 50 pages, I’ve lost my connection with the character. Maybe because I’m not thin yet. Maybe because I’m still halfway through the process.

Even so, the beginnings of Passing for Thin reminded me of some things I’ve known but neglected. Losing weight requires connecting to people. It cannot be done in a vacuum. It means asking for help. Support groups, meetings, whatever.

Frances used a 12-step program to lose weight. I’ve been to OA meetings before, and I’ve been very uncomfortable with the program, the precepts, the meeting format, everything.

First, I do not feel powerless over food. Maybe I am. But I have the power to make decisions for change. I chose surgery. I choose the gym. No, that doesn’t solve everything, but dammit, I am not powerless. (Or am I?)

Second, I don’t want a sponsor and all that crap. I don’t want to call somebody about my food every day. I don’t want to have to keep that kind of contact with anybody. I’m busy. In fact, I’m too busy for meetings period!

See the resistance?

I’ve submitted to everything else in this journey: the doctors. the surgery. the message boards. the vitamins. the blog. the therapist. the protein. the water. why not this?

why not add one more tool? Can OA hurt?

Who knows. I feel off track. After reading Frances’ story, I feel like I should give it a shot. Maybe I’d meet someone I could actually enjoy talking to. Maybe I’d meet people that don’t scare me off. Maybe it will be one more building block for this process. Or maybe it would be one more exercise in futility.

I won’t commit to anything now. Except that I might try another meeting some time if Lee’s working late. We’ll see.


2 Responses

  1. You know, I don’t think it ever stops being a learning process or a trial and error situation. We are constantly evolving in all aspects of our lives and weight loss is no different. We fight with ourselves and try to find the answers and we don’t always get it completely and perfectly correct the first time, but you know what? That’s ok. You’ll get back on track and judging by your numbers in the next post (I read backwards) you never really went off to begin with!

  2. You know what – does your surgeon have support groups? Or a hospital near you? I don’t know that I’d go to OA either – because we have different issues to deal with now on top of our old ones… so try a surgery support group if you try anything. I’ve gotten a wealth of information from the people that have gone before us…

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