Tuesday, July 28, 2009
I posted recently about missing my grandfather and how he was a big motivator for this surgery. My grandfather was a healthy and active man most of his life. When he was 80 years old he was winning chin-up contests at the gym. He was also a healthy and active smoker, it eventually caught up with him and he was diagnosed with lung cancer. The cancer changed him from a strong and vibrant man to a man who was physically very weak. We thought he was getting better and then he has a stroke, testing after the stroke revealed cancer in his brain, the lung cancer we thought was under control has metastasized around his body. It was three short and shocking weeks and then he was gone. My grandfather chose not to have drastic measures to save his life and when he was unable to feed or care for himself he went into hospice care. We spent seven days watching him breathe. The doctors told us they couldn't tell us when the end would come, but as his breathing slowed the end was getting nearer. We took turns sitting there for a week, counting his breaths, hoping for one more and wishing that he could be in peace. What I wanted more than one more breath was one more moment with him as the man I remembered. The day he died was really the day my weight loss journey began, I was angry with him for being a smoker, I saw every cigarette as a moment that was taken away. Slowly I began to see these extra pounds as moments, moments I was taking away from myself and from my family and I decided I wanted them back. With every pound lost I feel more vibrant and more alive and more at peace with the loss of a man who meant so much to me.