I've struggled with weight my entire life. When folks were bing nice they called me husky, when not being nice they called me lots of other things. Later in life I became big man. (Seriously, everyone who wants my attention on the street calls me big man (an aside, there is this bellman who works at a hotel between two of my museum's buildings. I see him all the time. A couple years ago his house burned down. Tragic. Right before thanksgiving. I passed him some cash as I've been there and it's a terrible place to be. We chatted about the kind of crushing loss that comes from losing all your shit and how you're glad to be alive but all your time is consumed with figuring out how to get the basics of life covered. Anyway, months later he asks if I know any furniture restorers - I do. I give him the names of a couple guys. A couple months later he calls the museum and is transferred to my desk because he's forgotten the names I gave him. He say, hey, do you work the a heavy set fella? I say, that would be me. He says oh, not heavy set, healthy guy. big man...................))
I've counted carbs, watched weight, drank less, ate only white foods, had a can of green beans a day, didn't orange Julius but might have if I was a bit older, and lost hope along the way. I've exercised, biked to work, strength trained and beat myself on the cardio machines. I work a pretty active job, but now that I'm management I spend a lot more time at my desk.
Enter a bad trip to the doctor. I generally do not shy away from knowledge, though being diagnosed as diabetic kinda crushed me. Moral failure. (I know, I know, not really but that's the thought process). Enter a deepening depression already deep enough with the state of the world. I fired my PCP for a variety of reasons but high up on the list was the way they delivered the news - phone call and an email telling me to pick up a prescription. No follow up. No information. No referral. Just take these pills for the rest of your life, you're fine.
New PCP is a great doctor. Very communicative and very interested in long term enjoyment of life. Says, hey, let's work on some of this. Try to lose some weight. Take it seriously. I do and I did. Problem is that that I just don't lose the weight. Doc says my A1c is climbing a bit despite my efforts at diet and exercise. Says, look, there are these new classes of drugs on the market. Lots of concern tho, no long term understanding regarding life time drugs or if lifestyle change means you can taper off them in a year and maintain health gains. We weighed the risks and rewards and I chose to jab myself every week (though I've already been injecting shit to kill the hives* so what's another couple jabs a month)
The crazy part is that almost instantly everything changed. I guess I had no idea how much time I spent dealing with or thinking about food. I love to cook. Cooking is an expression of both love and creativity. That isn't what I'm talking about when I say that I didn't know how much of my life was dominated by food thought. Almost impossible to describe.
The weight fell off of me at first. My best friend in NOLA left in June. We kinda had a nawlins** bender before he left which I'm sure didn't help my overall health picture. I started the course of drugs in July and when I saw my man at the MN state fair on Labor Day I was down ~20 pounds. He was shocked. I was shocked. I am shocked.
In the 4.5 months since I started taking a drug designed to control blood sugar (and taken by lots of folks who want to lose the extra 20 pounds) I've lost a considerable amount of weight, but I've also changed almost every aspect of my life. I still drink too much, if I'm honest, but I've been far more active, I eat considerably more healthy than I did prior, and my a1c is low enough to be considered elevated but not diabetic - though I'll carry that diagnosis for the rest of my life.
Lots of stuff to unpack. I have many mixed feelings about the drug. On one hand it's effing amazing in the ability to control sugar and food noise, on the other have I failed so hard I need to be on a drug to bring me back from the edge????!? (also, I don't engage with fast food or 'ultra' processed foods that often, but I am certain that the food scientists addicted millions to their products and now Lilly is here to provide a cure in the form of another addiction) I get that some folks see these drugs as cheating. I didn't engage with this for vanity. The visible change, tho, is what drives people to ask what/how/are you? and say things like you look great (thanks, but that implies I also looked like shit previously...) All to say that when you're big man people have opinions and do not hesitate to share them.
I'm continuing to shrink a bit. I've been lifting again to maintain muscle. Thinking about going to a strength trainer. My life is largely the same but very different. Colleagues and strangers all treat me differently now that I'm not big man anymore. Strange to wander around as a different human in the same skin.
**no one says this