There is a well-known quote that comparison is the thief…
I think part of what makes deciding to have gastric bypass surgery or any bariatric surgery so hard is that once you fully begin to realise how much is involved you see just how much time and energy you are going to have to focus on yourself. I think part of getting myself to this point was I stopped focussing on myself and what I needed as I was so busy looking after everyone else around me.
The lead up to surgery is quite intense. If you go through the public system like I did you have to lose some weight to get on the surgical list. If you go privately then you will be encouraged to lose weight beforehand but it won’t be a condition of surgery. This will mean you need to focus on your eating habits and exercise and make sure you start making the changes that are going to help you reach your goal weight after surgery and maintain that loss in the future.
As well as that there is of course the, at minimum, two week Optifast diet beforehand which is a very essential part of the process. I felt like an absolute psycho for most of this two weeks because I was so hungry and tired. This is the bit where you need to apologise to everyone close to you in advance for your behviour and focus on whatever you need to to get yourself through. I had a freakout on day 11 of this stage and my husband was the one who bought me back down to earth.
After surgery for the first six months at least, its going to be all about you and what you need. The first few weeks where you are on a liquid diet and starting to transition up through the dietary stages you need to really focus on your fluid and protein intake and make sure you get in what you have to. If you need something right now, you need it right then and everyone else is going to have to wait.
You need to be prepared and make the time to put yourself first. This can be really hard but it is absolutely essential. Because of what you body has gone through you will be tired and have days where you can do the bare minimum and that’s okay. Just do what you need to look after yourself and get anyone else through that relies on you.
Please let me reassure you that by choosing to take this giant step for yourself and take your health back, you are choosing to put yourself first, you have to it’s crucial to your success. By doing this you are doing the best for your family for the long term. Do not feel guilty about this. The people close to you may have to make the occasional sacirifice but it’s the way world works.
In preparing for your success you need to accept that you will need to put yourself first and take the time to properly look after yourself. This will pay off, I promise and it will become easier and it will start coming a bit more naturally for you to factor time in for exercise or meal prep. If you are not in a position to be able to properly focus on yourself around the time of your surgery and afterwards it may not be the best time to have your surgery.
Part of the focus on yourself is crucial to your wellbeing and if you can’t focus on yourself like you need to then you should think about it possibly not being the right time. If you are ready and conditions look okay in terms of being able to be a bit self centered for a while go for it. The investment in yourself is worth it and you may find you start looking after yourself much better in the long term.
Were you surprised by how self centered you needed to be after surgery? Let me know I’d like to know your thoughts on this.