New You, New Body, Renewed Health
After years of struggling with obesity, looking in the mirror after losing 100 pounds or more is a dissociative experience. A lot of people report catching a glimpse of their new body in a mirror after losing weight and not recognizing the person who is looking back as them.
After JSAPA Weight Loss Surgery will be the same place it always has been, but how you approach your home town, your job and your friends and family members is likely to change. Out of all of these changes however, none may be as drastic as the physical alterations that take place on your body.
“The only way to make sense out of change is to plunge into it, move with it, and join the dance.” –Alan Watts.
Getting to Know the New You
The first thing to acknowledge as you adjust to your new body is that you are the same person you always were, and always will be. Your body has changed, your health has changed and your habits have changed, but deep down you still laugh at the same jokes, love the same people and enjoy the same hobbies.
There is nothing wrong with who you are and who you were prior to your surgery. You are still you, just healthier. Embrace that and the other changes will become easier to cope with.
Here are a few tips to help you adjust to your new body after bariatric surgery:
- Practice accepting compliments: You are going to receive compliments. Everyone from your co-workers, family members and strangers you nod to on the bus in the morning are going to notice the physical change on your body. This type of attention will feel awkward at first, and you might not know what to do. Practice complimenting yourself in the mirror and accepting those compliments. There is no harm in rehearsing a line that you feel comfortable saying 100 times. When all else fails, a simple smile and “thank you” will always do.
- Don’t worry about who’s looking at you: After losing weight a lot of bariatric patients report receiving attention from every angle—sometimes more than they know what to do with. Some of this might be real, as those with a healthier weight are more likely to receive professional attention that will help them progress in their career, as well as be noticed romantically. Sometimes, however, this is just a spotlight affect. When you think everyone is looking at you, it feels like everyone is looking at you, when most of the time strangers are simply thinking of themselves.
How you look is a big identifier of who you are. This is difficult for a lot of people after bariatric surgery. You are who you were, but your body is entirely new. You might still think of yourself as overweight or obese and handle yourself as if your body was still that way. You’ve wanted to lose weight, and now you are doing it. Be proud of yourself and embrace the look that you’ve achieved, you deserve it.