99 wasn't enough.


So, this morning, I stepped on the scale and it read 302, I shifted around a bit and it read 301.5 (it is an LCD display in 0.5 lb increments). The morning I had surgery, December 10, 2009, the scale at the hospital read 402.8. The reading this morning was the first one I've had that was 100 lbs below that number.

100 lbs in 235 days, that's an average of 7 oz of mass-loss per day. If that were 100% fat being lost (which it wasn't), that would represent an average caloric deficit of about 1500 kcals per day.

Aren't numbers great? It really makes you feel like you know something. But, of course, you don't. For one, I've had a bout of intestinal distress over the last day or two which undoubtably emptied me of some amount of weight, and it's been hot, so I might be a little on the dehydrated side. Weight fluctuates very widely during the day for reasons that have nothing to do with actual, real changes in body fat/muscle composition. The numbers you get on the scale day to day contain a lot of noise, that's why those who recommend weighing no more than once a week have a point.

Also, on December 4, 2009, five days before the procedure, I weighed 414 lbs. Even though I stopped eating solid food about 36 hours before my procedure, I didn't lose 12 lbs of body fat/muscle in 5 days. So, take the numbers with a grain of salt, particularly as a fine measure. But, all that being said, it is close enough to 100 lbs to call it a milestone.

I've been dreaming of losing 100 pounds most of my adult life. Funny, now that the day has arrived, it is anti-climatic. I'm sure if I could have walked out of my 400 lb body directly into my 300 lb body it would have been shocking and full of awe. Instead, the experience has mostly been gradual and not very dramatic.

There have been quantum thresholds: the point around 40 lbs lost where I could unquestionably feel the difference in my feet and legs when standing for the very first time, the point around 60 lbs lost where everyone I saw in person with any regularity knew I had lost weight, the point around 75 lbs lost where I began to fit into airline/car seats, the point around 90 lbs lost where I surpassed all previous weight-loss instances, etc. However, now that I am at 100 lbs lost, something I have been anticipating for 30 years, it's just another day in some ways.

And it's not in other ways. Rather than something suddenly being triggered, or changing, at 100 lbs lost, it's been a process of gradually adjusting to a new way of living that started around the 80 pound mark and just continues to increase in intensity as the loss increases. I wonder at this point if there will be another period of relative stability (with regard to my experience) upcoming or if I will just continue to experience new vistas of unanticipated experience. I can cope with either manifestation, that's not the issue, It is just that I'm like anyone, I'm curious about my future, particularly when I predict it is likely to be different than my recent past.

My therapist and I have noticed that I've become more (what she calls) aggressive. She doesn't use that term in exactly the same way that I do. Aggression to me connotes a sort of one-upmanship and insistence on dominance, that's not what she means. She is referring to more of what I would call assertiveness, or self-advocacy.

Whatever you call it, I've become less willing to accept less than I expect from people, less tolerant of those who fail to show up for me, and more interested in getting the things I believe I should get. That sounds great, but it involves a lot of change, pain and release of attachments (to both people and ideas I had about people). It's not easy, and it's not like this is some self-improvement project I am specifically undertaking, it is more just happening to me. It's like I am coming down off a mountain, and I've slipped and I'm sliding down a meadow hill-side for part of the descent I had intended to hike. I'm getting to where I clearly want to be, but my butt hurts.

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