Weighty Matters

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Stress Reduction

on January 10, 2013

A friend of mine is visiting the Keys this week.  She had gastric bypass surgery in October.  ( *waving*  Hi, S!)  She’s lost a good chunk of weight and sounds like she’s doing great with the recovery/food/eating  issues.

We had a nice chat this afternoon and got a bit into sharing how good it is to experience some of the things that are easier now that we’ve dropped weight.  Airplane travel, for one, which I’ve blogged about here.  Being able to feel our shoulder bones.   Fitting into plastic arm chairs and not worrying about them breaking beneath our weight.

These things, and other improvements made me think about how much losing weight reduces not only physical stress on our bodies, but also emotional and mental stress.   How much time did I spend in varying degrees of anxiety and stress while I worried about whether available chairs would hold my weight, whether I’d be able to get a seat belt extension on the plane, whether the seat belt in the rental car would fit around my winter coat-clad body, whether I’d be able to walk as far as I needed to?  How many things did I stop doing because I feared whatever negative impact my oversize body would make on the experience?

Looking back, I’m surprised that my head didn’t explode with the stress.  I’m also amazed that I didn’t always consciously feel the overwhelming stress.  Just goes to show that excessive amounts of food really can numb our emotions.

It’s only in looking back that I connect with the stress by virtue of experiencing it’s near-absence.  What a contrast!

I’ll be on a cruise in Hawaii in less than a month.  (I love saying that!)  The last time I was on a cruise ship was in May 2011 when my friend and I went to Alaska.  I had a marvelous time, but it was not without physical difficulty.  I paid a lot more for my plane ticket to the West Coast because I couldn’t stand the thought of a transcontinental flight in coach.  The ship was great, but my butt was too big to fit in the theater’s seats.  I did every excursion that I wanted to, but walking around the town in one port was excruciatingly difficult.

I don’t have any of those concerns or fears around my upcoming trip.  The flight is twice as long but my friend and I have the two seats next to each other on one side of the plane and we’ll be just fine.  I know that I’ll be able to settle in and enjoy the show without the physical discomfort of hard seats jabbing into my body.  I’m ready to snorkel, hike, and, yes, I believe that I have lost enough weight to zipline if we can fit that into our schedule in port!

Tonight, I can really feel, and celebrate, how much lighter I am in my spirit as well as my body.  It feels terrific.

4 responses to “Stress Reduction

  1. Hope says:

    sounds like an awesome vacation! and super relaxing to boot! 😉

  2. Skye says:

    It’s amazing how much stress one can become accustomed to without realizing it. I’m so glad you are lightened by its absence! I’m very excited for you for your trip to Hawaii! I hope you’ll post pictures.

  3. ahhh, Mary, so inspiring.. a few of those changes have come true for me.. and I live in the hope that the rest will too. Thanks for being a beacon to me!

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