Gastric Bypass: Rebeccas’s Story Part Two

Gastric Bypass: Rebeccas’s Story Part Two

*This is a continuation of Part One of Rebecca’s weight loss journey through gastric bypass.

Part Two

The first time I met with Rebecca we met at Zocalo Coffee Shop a few exits from where I live. I love meeting friends and collaborators there because the place just oozes art and creativity, and as an added bonus, my kids can tag along. A side effect of being an attachment parent is that my children are quite attached to me, and Celaya especially is relentless about coming along whenever possible. I don’t mind so much because there’s a nice little play area that keeps both Celaya and Matilda entertained while I talk shop or visit.

The second time I visited Rebecca at her house, so my kids stayed home. I certainly did not expect a woman who had recently undergone surgery and had been in and out of the hospital ever since to hop on down to the local cafe and catch me up on her status while my children tugged on my skirt.

In reality, I likely could have asked Rebecca to meet me. The woman is a nonstop energy machine. She had the surgery August 22, 2017, and since that time barely two months ago she has been packing up the house she lives in, which is in her mother’s estate and now being sold. She’s packed moving boxes, gone camping!, and made it out to her teenage son’s baseball games on weekends.

Leave it to a woman, a mother especially, to not know how to just sit the hell down and recuperate.

Rebecca’s House

I had been to Rebecca’s house years before, and it was exactly as I remembered it, tucked away in the hills, with winding concrete steps surrounded by wild plants. I hope she is able to find another place that suits her so well once this house sells. Rebecca told me once that she had dabbled a bit in Wicca before she became a buddhist, and when you walk up those steps, you do indeed expect to see herb pots with eye of newt and tongue of dog.Continue reading…    

Rebecca’s Story: Gastric Bypass Surgery Part 1

Rebecca’s Story: Gastric Bypass Surgery Part 1

When I walked into Zocalo in San Leandro, CA, to meet with my friend Rebecca to discuss her gastric bypass surgery, I didn’t recognize her. I walked right past her, even though, really, you couldn’t miss her.

She had on a bright, hot pink top, with little ruffles around the collar, she had on cute pink earrings to match. Her hair is a light, bright yellow with adorable curls all around her face. She was wearing pink lipstick, and beautifully applied and eye shadow that had clearly been carefully chosen. She was well into three hundred pound territory and sitting at a table right inside the door, facing the door.

She should have been the first person I noticed. But I walked right past her, because I was looking for my friend Rebecca, not this cute, very overweight woman. Continue reading…    

Stay Safe: From a Woman Who Runs Alone at Night

Stay Safe: From a Woman Who Runs Alone at Night

My brilliant plan to run at night entered crash and burn phase almost immediately. I headed out after work, 10:30 PM, down a very wide, well lit sidewalk. I had only one headphone in my ear, the other one tucked neatly into my shirt. I run with my head up and my music low. I only feel comfortable running at night because both neighborhoods where I work are well populated and safe. As a woman, I have had to think about safety first my whole life. Walking at night? Not down a dark alley. Headed out with some friends? Not with all boys. The chances of anything happening are pretty slim, but, again, I’m a woman. And staying safe, as a woman who runs alone at night, is a primary concern for me.

On my third night out running, I entered the part of the neighborhood that gets really quiet when cars aren’t driving by. But I’m on this new kick to be unafraid, so I’m cool. No fear.

“Scurry scurry.” I hear something in the bushes next to me. Instinct pushes me out further on the sidewalk. I’m running on the edge of the sidewalk now, almost in the streets. “Scurry scurry.”Continue reading…    

Changing the Voices in My Head: Running Through Anxiety

Changing the Voices in My Head: Running Through Anxiety

I never had anxiety before I had kids. When I was a kid, I was fearless. I began to get a sense of my mortality in my twenties. “Okay,” I thought, “death is real, and I could die.” But still, I wasn’t going to, not for a long time. Never did I think I would find myself daily running through anxiety. It certainly did not ever occur to me that I would be writing about changing voices in my head.

I was going to live to be 100, just like my great grandmother.

After a wild and crazy youth, I met and married my life partner.

Life was still grand. We traveled, we spent weekends drinking Spanish wine and watching Spanish language films, we hiked on weekends, and we ran in the afternoons side by side along the sidewalks of our city. We loved life, and we loved each other.

Then I had my first baby, and the voices crept in. I had tried for two years to have Celaya, and a dark inner voice worked hard to convince me that I didn’t deserve her. Little demons whispered to me that I would drop her; I would cut her while I was cooking; she would get a fatal disease.Continue reading…