Friday, 24 September 2010

An award and a reflection on 'failure'

Tina is a pal. 

She's nominated me for another blog award, for which I'm profoundly grateful.  It's lovely to get recognition if people like what you write - or in my case if they like the pictures I include. 

I think my blog comes under the category of modest, enjoying as it does a modest following of loyal readers and regular commentators.  They seem to be a mixture of bandits and people who like pictures, which suits me very well:  I love blogging because it enables me to write and share pictures, but fundamentally I really and truly need the contact with people who are going through the lapband process. 

I read as many blogs as I can, the bandit ones because I feel less alone on this difficult journey.  I'm not that good at losing weight even with the wonderful help of the band, and it really does help to know that there are other people out there who can

(1) succeed and inspire, like Tina and her meteoric rise to slimming super stardom;
(2) those who are plodding on like me, some of them writing painfully on how they feel they are failures. 

Sometimes as I read these I confess my eyes fill with tears, and if I saw them I would give them a hug and tell them that everybody fails (or succeeds) at something, we're all a mixed bag of good and bad.  There are no rules written above our cribs when we're born that we must succeed at the stereotypical roles assigned to us.

It would be far worse if our addiction was for example hard drugs, where the consequences would be even more devastating than merely being stared at in the street for being overweight.  If you were one of these unfortunate people, wouldn't you long for people to say 'ooh isn't she fat' instead? 

So if you're reading this and you're feeling very low because like me you haven't lost any serious weight for nearly a year, consider what it would have been like if your lapband had been removed a year ago - would you be at the same weight now as you were then?  Of course not.  The band is still doing it's job, it's helping you tread water till you're strong enough to start swimming again. 

So be patient.  Keep reading bandit blogs. Keep commenting, however briefly, because bandits sorely need evidence that people are reading and understanding them.  As the blogger, acknowledge the comments you get - they too need evidence that you appreciate their attempts to make you feel better.

There are bigger battles to fight, though you may not think so.  What's worse than feeling ugly and fat?  I'll tell you.  Feeling unloved, unrequited in love, rejected, unnoticed, being bullied, treated like dirt... and being slim won't prevent them from happening.  These things are worse, because you often have no control over them.  But this you can control, you just have to keep on trying.

Above all remember that you're not alone, and that in being part of the blogging world you're in a unique position to tap into the best therapy there is - the concern and affection of people who are suffering just like you.


Photo Finish:
From Lonicera's non-digital archive




Simone said...

What a beautifully written post, full of wisdom and kindness, I really enjoyed reading it Caroline. I have no doubt that your blog inspires many people and will continue to do so.

And your photos are stunning, wow!

Happy Weekend and best wishes to you :)

Sandy Lee said...

You are so right. Giving out lots of hugs to all the bandsters at various stages. So great we are not alone. We are thinking of all during our get together in Chi.

OneStonedCrow said...

Inspiring post Caroline - it's given me a lift when I'm feeling low, for different reasons ... love the images too ...

Zanna said...

Fabulous post Caroline and will give heart and strength to anyone who reads it whether or not they are a bandi. Gorgeous photos as always Zxx

Tina said...

I don't know about meteoric but the band has worked yes...plodded would be my descriptor. Keep the faith and yes you are right there are so many worse things than getting stuck (weightloss wise..not in the band) along the way.

Again...I love the pics. I can't seem to get any long distance scenery ones to look good. Yours look GREAT especially the icy creek.

Lonicera said...

Simone - sooo nice to read you! Thank you for your comment...

Sandy - I'm thinking of you all in Chicago, and hope that we'll see some pictures from somebody with names identified...It 'feels' so strange that you will be going from virtual to actual!

Stoned Crow - I appreciate your comment, thank you. I did wonder whether to add that in obsessing about our weight we are by definition being very self-centred, and there are people out there with all kinds of personal tragedies they have to deal with, and I'd rather just have the weight problem any day - but in trying to reach the (very) unhappy bandit bloggers I've been reading recently I decided against it. I know from experience that there's no point in telling people that there are others worse off than you are - when I've been told this it just makes me feel even more worthless. So I stopped short of that. I'm so glad you like the images. When I see yours I keep wondering what camera you use... they sort of look so professional. Course with that scenery you've got a head start...

Zanna, when I'm sifting through my pictures wondering which one to upload, you are forever linked to anything with doorways! I always find myself wondering "will Zanna like this one for her collection?". Thanks for the comment.

Tina - you more than plodded. You made it happen (I think) because you got up and went... to your bicycle, and to a more active way of life. It's been interesting to note in your progress that your success generated greater motivation, which generated more success. Don't know about those peppermint mochas though. Ugh...


Simone said...

Thanks for the comment, you made me smile :)

Vagabonde said...

I enjoy looking at your pretty pictures but I also enjoy reading your posts. I think they are very sensitive and caring. I hurt my knee years ago (have a crack in the meniscus – the hard cartilage.) This happened at work so under the US Workman’s comp I had to go to their doctor who, instead of treating me, gave me ultra strong doses of Vioxx for one year (the drug which killed several people and was recalled in the UK.) Another side effect was to make you gain weight. I gained 45 pounds. I am on blood pressure medicine now which also has a side effect for weight gain. Because of my knee which was not treated (and now it’s too late they say) it hurts to exercise and walk for too long. So I have not lost the weight. I know how hard it is and how discouraging it can be when you try to watch your food and if you eat one nice meal you gain. So I also appreciate all the inspiration in your posts and your understanding.

Lonicera said...

What a lovely comment Vagabonde, thank you very much. I had read in your blog somewhere about your knee problems, and they made me wince. But it doesn't seem to stop you on your travels, which is amazing. The lapband does help a bit when willpower is weak, but you have nothing except your inner resources.

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