Fat Thigh-Roid Woes: Rockin’ the Muffin Top
There was a time when my stomach didn’t hang over my pants. There was a time when I did not know the meaning of “muffin top”. There was also a time when I was so flippin’ sick skinny that I went out and bought two pairs of $150 jeans (oh, that was also the time when the economy was a lot better) and convinced myself that I was going to stay that thin forever even after I got well.
I’m not going to delve into societal pressure and what it does to women and body image. We all know those ins and outs, cause we’ve all experienced it on differing degrees.
What I want to get to the bottom of is our own personal shift in perspective while sick and after the sickness.
I know many of us with Graves who have lost so much weight see that as a big plus if we have to deal with the other symptoms. Sure, I’m not going to lie that I still sometimes get that twinge of “Yeah, those were the days.”. Even though my muscle had shriveled and I couldn’t walk up a flight of stairs without legs hurting and body panting – FUCK at least my thighs didn’t chaff. I was thin!!! Can’t walk in heels, it’s too difficult while my whole body is shaking, but it’s ok, I’ll wear these flip-flops with this dress…at least I can eat that slice of CAKE later!!
My biggest fear after the RAI was gaining weight and my eyes bugging more. Within a month my levels had dropped so quickly my body was putting on close to 2 – 3lbs a week. NIGHTMARE. Even though I realized some of that was muscle mass, my belly was whispering “you are a such fat ass”. Since I’ve been a yo-yo with weight my whole life, and I didn’t want stretch marks (yet again) that looked like I had been tortured with a blade along my love handles – I restricted my calories. However, I started on the path of self-sabotage. Things I had never really craved, I suddenly wanted to stuff into my fat face.
Why do you think happened? Why was it that much harder to want to lose weight this time around, even though I was so terrified of gaining it? All those comments in the past of “you look great”, and “keep up what you’re doing” were flashing in front of me. Only ONE person had ever said “you look great, but are you healthy?” Nah…I doubt their expectations influenced how well I lost weight, but I’m sure it did influence some sort of thought process.
If I was so concerned about my weight, why was I still eating more than my body needed? I realize that weight gain after RAI is almost an inevitability, but why did I now want MORE cake than I did before? I heard two docs say we’re so used to eating so much food while sick, and after RAI we still don’t realize what a normal portion size is supposed to be. I don’t think doctors give us enough credit. We ALL know what a normal portion size should be. We all KNOW when we’re full, and that we’re not supposed to stuff ourselves silly.
It comes down to this – I was resentful. Resentful that I once was able to eat the things I loved and not have to worry about if I burned enough calories to enjoy it. Resentful that I was once able to stuff myself and not worry about waking up fatter. I still wanted the perks of my disease (along with the smooth, velvety skin) but I didn’t WANT to be sick. Why couldn’t I have both? Haven’t I fucking suffered enough? Haven’t we all??? Damn it, I DESERVE to have my cake AND eat it too.
However, that resentment didn’t last as long as I expected. I gave up. I needed to stop being so hard on myself after my body had already been through so much. I stopped trying to lose the weight and just went with the flow. The flow of my stomach as it pressed over my pants, and the flow of my arms as they became more and more truck driver-ish.
I didn’t indulge in junk food or binge, I just simply didn’t think about losing weight. I somewhat expected to be depressed over this development, and saw visions of myself surrounded by cartons of Ben & Jerry’s (along with the tied up bodies of both Ben and Jerry for that matter, as I demanded they create flavors suited to my needs).
Then, something unexpected happened. One day, I woke up and looked in the mirror and grabbed my belly flab – but instead of in disgust, I giggled. Maybe I was morphing into the Pillsbury Dough Boy? No, I was enjoying the flab…
WTF? Who the hell caresses their flab like that? It took a moment to register…I WAS HAPPY. I was happy the flab was there, it was a reminder that I WAS STARTING TO BE HEALTHY AGAIN.
I have spent months like this. Though I complain about my fatness, I’ve become very accepting of it…for now. I know I’m reaching my “sick of it” point, but I just want you all to try and enjoy the blubber for a little bit. Go with it. Know that your body is going to take time to heal, and don’t try and interfere at present. Don’t stuff yourselves silly, but don’t beat yourselves up over it either if you do. Attempt to cut out the unhealthy junk, and eat as healthy as possible.
Also, PLEASE don’t do the diet thing – once you’re ready, change your eating habits to just monitor portions. The word “diet” denotes a temporary change. We need to really make lifelong changes so we can be healthy, and stay healthy. Also, “diet” drinks and food taste like ass, and they make your insides look like ass too.
When I’m ready to restrict calories again so I can drop the beached whale look, I’ll make it happen and without the self-sabotage.
I will still be craving that cake love-fest from time to time, but I will no longer resent my former self and what I used to be able to do. When I eat cake now, I know it’ll try to make its way to my thighs…and my new strength, ability to workout, and better judgement will figure out how to deal with it. Former Nicole only knew how to digest it poorly, get sick, and be locked in the bathroom in agony. Who is jealous NOW, biatch??
Tags: Fat Thigh-Roid Woes: Rockin The Muffin Top, Graves disease column, graves disease symptoms, Graves weight loss, hypothyroid weight issues, hypothyroidism weight gain, Post RAI radioactive iodine treatment, thyroid and weight, written by Nicole Wells