I’m in an abusive relationship. I’m being hurt and belittled, made to feel ashamed. I’m being tortured. I’ve tried and tried to break it off, but I just can’t. I don’t know if I can make it on my own. Besides, I’m in love.
Sorry for the soap-opera-melodrama. But honestly, that’s what my obesity feels like sometimes, when I’m struggling. Truth is, I’ve got this horribly weird and twisted relationship with food. Gotta eat to live, but the way I eat is killing me. What’s surprising is that I didn’t see the unhealthy nature of my relationship with food sooner. I’m a bright, educated guy, a problem solver. I don’t see why it should be hard for me to recognize an untenable situation and get out. Tough to look in the mirror, I guess.
I’m trying hard, harder than I ever have, to change my relationship with food. I think it might be easier if I could just go cold turkey; stop eating today, and never eat again. Instead, I have to change. I’ve already made some small steps. I’ve eliminated some of the trigger foods I simply can’t control, like McDonald’s – all fast food, really – and Cheez-Its. I’m not bingeing on greasy Chinese or overwhelming Indian lunch buffets. I’m getting myself off coffee and other caffeine, in preparation for my upcoming surgery. I’m adding other things to the list. I strongly believe that the visible and dramatic initial weight loss of gastric bypass will make it that much easier to say goodbye to the worst of the worst.
The thing is, no matter how much weight I lose, no matter how successful my gastric bypass turns out, I’m always going to be an addict. Gastric bypass is just a tool to help me along. What I really have to do – what I’ve already started doing – is divorce myself from the abusive relationship. I’ve got to leave the old Mike behind, so I can evolve into the new Mike.