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Two Months Down, A Lifetime to Go

Well, I hopped on the scale this morning, two months since the date of my surgery, and I now weigh 237.5 pounds.  Being in the 230’s is a pretty big accomplishment.  I haven’t been in this neighborhood since Brighid was a baby. 

This is not a journey I would recommend to everyone.  There are days that I could absolutely cry over missing food.  It seems that all of the things in life up to this point have involved food.  Celebrations?   Food.  Mourning?   Food.  Bored?   Food.  I haven’t found something to replace what was once my closest friend.  I met a woman at my support group meeting on Friday night who had her surgery nearly a year ago, and has only lost a little over 20 pounds.  She complains of problems with her doctor, problems eating anything, and was upset that she was referred to as mentally unbalanced by her doctor and his staff.  But with all of her eating problems, she managed to suck down quite a bit of trail mix that Chrissy brought to the meeting.  Obviously, she hasn’t replaced her best friend either.

Ironically, I spend much more time cooking now than I ever have.  I want to make sure Jim and the kids are eating healthy.  We have virtually given up fast food entirely.  The kids have gotten two treats since my surgery and have had fast food, but when we were once going every day for lunch, once a month is a huge change.  It’s nice though.  We’re all sitting at the dinner table together most nights (Monday nights are tough, and the kids and I usually eat at my mom’s), and while there is still stress over who’s not sitting still, who’s in the wrong chair, etc., there’s pleasant conversation and the baby really enjoys having everyone around her. 

I’ve been very lucky so far with this surgery, and I pray that everything physical continues to remain in good working order.  Now I just have to wrap my head around things and learn that food wasn’t really my friend.  It put me in the position where I could have died from any number of obesity related disorders.  So when it’s someone’s birthday, there will have to be a celebration that doesn’t involve cake, snacks, etc.  When someone dies, there will be no ice cream to dull the pain of grief. 

Having this surgery really means having to learn to live.  And feel.  And accept.  Those are all hard lessons.

We’re Not Church People; We’re Irish

I’ve been incredibly lax in taking my children to Church.  If you’ve ever sat through a Catholic Mass with a rambunctious 5 year old and a 1 year old, with no crying room, you’ll understand that getting up and going to Church with the lot of them is not a pleasure. 

Eilis started kindergarten this fall, though, and I have decided that it is high time she get her act together and learn to sit through Mass.  Our Church has what they call the Children’s Liturgy of the Word.  During two Masses each Sunday, the children can go out of the main Church and into a room at the back where the readings and the Gospel are explained to them in language they can understand.  I figured my best bet with Eilis was taking her to a Mass that had CLOW, so at the very least, there’s a good 15 minute span where she could go out and stretch her legs and be somewhere where she understood what was going on.

Well, I am hoping by next Sunday the 15 minutes is expanded to about an hour and 15 minutes.  When she was in the pew with me, it was all I could do to keep from strangling her.  She sat when she was supposed to stand.  She stood when she should have been kneeling.  At one point, she was laying on the floor.  I’ve never been so embarassed in my life as I was with this behavior. 

I get her outside, where I promptly remark that had she been better behaved in Church, we would be going to the pancake breakfast, but since she was not on her best behavior, we would be going home.  That is when I was informed, in no uncertain terms, that we should not go to Church.  We are not Church People, we are Irish People!  

I spent the rest of the morning explaining to her that anyone can be “Church People”, whether they are Irish, Italian like Nannie, German, even Japanese people can be Church people. She’s not impressed. 

There may be two people hanging on the cross in our Church next Sunday.