I WANT TO DELETE THIS BECAUSE IT REALLY IS NOT What I want to be sharing about. But... I'm leaving it here because -- well... this happened. I had this moment when I wanted to consider surgery in my future. Ugh. Or ... well... Putting it away for posterity. It's an inside job. But outsides DO MATTER TO ME, too.
I wrote this yesterday --
My BFF got a tummy tuck last month. She reached goal weight at WW and has been Lifetime for a few months.
She looks F A B U L O US beautiful
Her body type is very different than mine - where she carried her weight and how many times she went up and down large numbers.... different.
Her connection to activity and moving her body is more solid and integrated than mine.
We are different people. And kindred spirits.
For the first time in a very long time, she shared with me a photo of herself in undies. She is very private and modest and so, despite the fact that for eons we have tried on clothes together (in all sizes, and especially in the Women's / Plus size stores) ... We always had separate dressing rooms.
When I had lost a lot of weight and she was beginning this victorious journey... she was SO supportive and helped me shop for new smaller outfits that would be my style. Having CHOICES was and remains such a CHANGE after of lifetime of limitations.
I moved away geographically and have not been in the same town to share her success and go shopping with her... except a couple of times a year now when I visit. So ... this rare occasion of showing a photo was... huge.
I've been envious of her success somewhat. I have felt occasionally left in the dust.
She has been contending with all kinds of anxiety issues that onset after the weight was off. Interesting phenomenon.
After I was sick with Colitis in 2012 - after I'd lost my hard won muscle tone to over a year of illness and prednisone and more.... Even though I lost weight and got down to 153....
well I remember being smaller and lighter... and anemic... and anxious...
A confluence of worldly events cluttered up my sense of what I'd achieved and I was not at all centered in my SELF, body mind or spirit. Then I gained some weight. And... I've been chipping away at compromise and okay ... for a long time... looking for
What do I really want? If I'm not afraid of failing.....
You know.... The scars and Sharpay extra folds of skin that hang ... I've adjusted to mostly. I'm grateful to be lighter and more agile and more healthy. And the skin is like rings on the tree that I am. Acceptance. Yes. I've found it.
But.... Maybe -- MAYBE --
Now that I'm a fly on the wall in my friend's journey....
I heard her tell me that "I wanted to have more power over my body". This was motivating her workouts and her connection to movement more than being a body-beautiful agenda. And it is/was also about how she looks in clothes, in the mirror ... etc. "All the work to take off the weight... " and she was not really at peace with the loose skin on her belly. "There are plenty of other places where the past is visible"... She is not looking for externally reference perfection.
While the comparing myself to her has been a burden for many months...
The recent reveals and sharing between us has been a gift.
I don't know that I will seek a brachioplasty EVER... But I have had more honesty in the mirror the past few days. The "bat wings" really do bother me in exercise class. I have worked so hard to accept them, and I do. AND YET... Allowing myself for a second to imagine them gone has given me a perspective I didn't have last week. This is the body part that most impedes my sense of "success" and "arrival".
There's a huge discrepancy tween tummy work and arm work. You can hide a tummy scar. There is no hiding arm scars. And arm skin is much thinner and harder to manage for plastic surgeons.
So... I AM DEFINITELY NOT SIGNING UP for SURGERY
I am however admitting to myself, that there is a rub somewhere.
I have had some premature resignation to the idea of being frumpier than I need to be.
I may not be frumpy at all.
But this LENS where I am supposedly Okay with being freckled and frumpy (cuz it's better than where I was).... That LENS is off.
I don't know what kind of NEW LENS will replace it. But I'm inviting new lenses to appear.
Rose colored glasses?
"Could be... who knows.... It's only just out of reach, down the block on a beach, under a tree.... It may come cannonballing down from the sky, gleam in its eye, coming to me! .... Will it be? Yes it will. Maybe just by holding still....."
150 is the new Wonderland.
This other stuff... is for future reference ;-)
Footnote re: Procedure of Brachioplasty (Bat wing surgery) for loose arm skin
NOT FOR THE SQUEEMISH !!!
Hazardous Footnote ? -
This is a procedure that no one claims to be "the expert". (problematic) One of the problems with the surgery is managing patient expectations. Scars are difficult to predict.
Typically patients come in desiring correction of loose skin. However, In this particular instance, Commonly, they become self conscious about the scars which can be good or bad but nearly always visible. A person with reasonable expectations who realizes these scars are inevitable and will be visible, will be most pleased. An individual who expects no scars will be greatly disappointed.
Surgeons who commonly perform correction following massive weight loss surgery are likely to be the most experienced in this procedure. Web reference: http://www.bodysculptor.com/
Patients who experience dramatic weight loss often find that the skin on their upper arms doesn’t contract to fit their new slimmer shape or show off their muscle tone. Even without a significant change in weight, the natural effects of age and gravity can bring about a loss of elasticity in upper arm skin, particularly in women. Achieving a sleeker, more contoured look to the arms can improve the silhouette of your entire body. There are different ways to perform an arm lift, and Dr. will decide which method is best for you after a physical examination. Typically, an incision will be made from the armpit to the elbow on the inside or back of the arm in order to remove the excess skin and fatty tissue.. x then sutures and dresses the incision. To achieve even better results, the doctor may include liposuction near the upper arm or the surrounding transition areas as well. Some patients may be able to get satisfactory results with a mini-arm lift or minimal scar technique, which requires a smaller incision and removes less skin.
An arm lift will require the use of general anesthesia, although patients typically go home the same day as their surgery. After surgery, you will have dressings wrapped around the upper arms to protect the incisions and x may write a prescription to help control any pain or discomfort you experience during your recovery. Despite some initial swelling, most patients return to work and other daily activities within a week or so after an arm lift. The appearance of the scars will continue to improve over time, but are typically not noticeable since they’re located discreetly on the inside of the arm, where they’re hidden by the body.