Sunday, January 24, 2010

The Divide

Today I saw two women whom I haven’t seen in quite a long time. They both told me that I am looking great and I felt like they were very sincere in their remarks. It was really nice, but also a little weird. They are both overweight.

I never really thought too much about this scenario. The majority of my friends are relatively typical when it comes to what they weigh, so when I’ve seen one of them after an extended period of time I tend to think of my weight loss as a way in which I am becoming a little more similar to them. It never occurred to me that the opposite would be true.

Obviously I am only talking about the external physical shells that we all walk around in; I know perfectly well that – apart from any lessons an individual may learn because of a weight problem – how one looks has nothing to do with who a person is deep down. Yet, this evening, I still felt that in some way there was a very slightly increased divide between myself and the people I hadn’t seen in so long.

I’m not sure how to explain it… I am not trying to imply that the separation was due to a conscious thought or even on any significant level. It was not an inferiority / superiority thing. It didn’t even have to do with anything that was said or any tones used. It was just… there. This thought that echoed somewhere in the back of my head and that I felt so much like I could read in the eyes of both woman. It was this vague sense that recognized that we were no longer quite as similar as before.

Maybe I imagined it?

It has left me feeling a little bewildered. My mother is overweight, but I see her so frequently that this was never an issue. But tonight – with the surprise that crossed their features when they laid eyes on the shrunken version of me – I felt like I had abandoned these people in some small way.

- 9 glasses of water throughout the day
- 1 1/2 bananas
- 1 wrap on a soft tortilla shell with deli ham, grated cheese, spinach, dried cranberries, fat free Miracle Whip, mustard, and pepper
- 4 bites of pumpkin pie with 95% fat free Cool Whip
- 1/2 cup grapes
- 2 bites of a double chocolate cookie
- 1 1/4 cup homemade spinach, artichoke, and cheese pastry wreath
- 3 slices salami
- 2 miniature Mandarin oranges
- 1/2 cup fat free mango-passion fruit yogurt

- 1 hour and 40 minutes of walking completed in 2 outings ( 1 hour long and 40 minutes long)
- 25 minute workout video


  1. Maybe you will inspire them. I've had so many people tell me that I have inspired them and for the first time they really think that they can do it too.
    That alone would make this journey worth it.

  2. You're right...there is a divide in a weird way. Not from true good friends, those are always so happy for you ( if they thin of course )

    I found when I went to hubby's work function having lost 20kgs ( 44 lbs ) I was ignored...they all looked at me, gossiped amongst each other about me and when I spoke to them they could not look me in the eye. I felt terrible.

  3. It's strange I know. People get so used to the way we look so when we go changing it, we shock their world.

    Just think, you're an amazing person inside and out. You just want your out to be more amazing. And there's nothing wrong with that.

  4. This may sound a little "out there", but I was told once...."if you are feeling something when you are around someone, you may be picking up the "energy" of what that person is feeling, so pay attention". It would make sense that they might have been feeling envious, or sad, or some other feeling that your spirit is picking up on. I've watched that in my own situations for a while now, and I think it's true. When I notice it now, it helps me know what the other person could be feeling, so I better know how to relate to them. Hope that makes sense...

  5. Hmmm ... maybe they were envious. I'm guessing it's nothing you've "pit out there" but stems from their own insecurities. I've probably put that "energy" out (for lack of a better term). It's a hard pill to swallow if you have been making half hearted attempts at losing weight or maybe not even that much. You may just be the boost of realization that they needed. I hope you're not down about it though! You are doing fantastic!!! Don't let it rain on your parade!!!

  6. It's possible that you are making them feel a bit bad, as if they should do similar. I had a woman actually give me a hard time about it a few weeks back, I was making her "look bad". I wrote a post on it, I still don't think she was totally joking.

    I find the lifestyle change, more than size, causes shockwaves with my still large friends. I don't eat sandwiches or pizza at 10 pm because I've had a drink and they would taste good. Nor do I get a donut or muffin when I need to get coffee on the run. It's especially apparent and trippy with my friend who had WLS, as she is thin, no longer absorbs fat, can eat all sorts of things I just can't do, hardly needs to exercise.

  7. Trust your instincts. I've experienced this before and not nearly so successful as you (yet!) in my own journey, the same thing has already happened to me, too. I think the truth is, when we turn in our membership cards and leave the "Sisterhood of the Traveling Fat Girls" we can become a bit of an outcast. It's a sad sign of the deep unhappiness and insecurity that we all know goes hand-in-hand with so many people who are navigating this world in obese bodies that encumber them in so many uncomfortable ways. It's one of the reasons I didn't tell many people about my surgery. People's perceptions can be so odd. And so hurtful sometimes. Your progressive pictures are absolutely inspiring. Smile, ignore the attitudes and keep up the great work. Lookin good!!!!

  8. I agree with the above comments -- you probably were picking up a little envy/jealous vibe there. Even though, as friends, they wanted to feel good for you, at the same time they were also feeling, perhaps, as if they were lessened by the comparison.
    I do wish I could stop comparing myself to others. It's not effective and it's not kind.

  9. I haven't been on your end of that experience yet, but I have been on the other end. It's a weird thing to not wish the best in your subconscious for your friends or family. But it's not you, it's them. If they are good friends, they will get over their feelings of insecurity and take inspiration from you.

  10. No, you did not abandon them, You had to make the choice to be healthy for you & your family & absolutely nothing wrong with that. Unfortunately, some of our heavier friends don't always agree with this & I have posted about this before.. if you can't inspire them to lose weight & you should be an inspiration, sometimes we have to let go for a while. I hope they look to you for inspiration!

  11. Your friends are obviously envious of you. These are usually the people who try to sabotage your efforts because they feel if they're not working on their weight why should you. A true friend would never feel that way. You are truly an inspiration and they should maybe look to you for some guidance if they are a little green with envy. Hold your head up high on your new beautiful body and be proud of yourself! You so so so deserve it!

  12. I've noticed this same feeling when around my fatter friends/coworkers/etc. I even go so far as to feel bad that I might be making them feel bad and it makes me feel like I should downplay what I've accomplished. It's like I want to say, "No, no, we're still the same, really, I'm still a big fat girl on the inside."

  13. It's not something that I am worried about per say; I did not sense that it was a harsh, awful feeling... it was just there. And I didn't mean to give the impression that I felt like they were being even remotely unpleasant (like I said, I really did feel that their congratulations were sincere). It just seemed as if there was a mutual understanding that things were different - perhaps, it was that I would not have to face the exact same struggles as them any more? I am still haveing a really hard time putting my finger on it exactly.

  14. I'll go with the jealousy vote. If I were in their position - friends with someone who used to be overweight and suddenly lost a lot of weight - I would be jealous. It's hard not to be, you know?
    But, then I would be happy for my friend, and I would get over it. And I would be inspired and ask my friend what they're doing to get so slim! So - hopefully your friends will also move past the original envy and will be truly happy for you (and hopefully motivated as well).