“Oh my God, girrrl, you have lost weight!” was one of the first things someone said to me the other day. “What’s going on?” he continued while looking me up and down pointedly, the way only a gay man can do legally.
“Um, yeah, I have been working out a bit,” I told him.
“No, you have lost a lot of weight! You look great!” So why did I want to punch him?
I guess I have lost a little weight. By a little, I mean a little. A twenty pound chunk has not been removed from my ass nor have I suddenly begun starring in a sitcom and dropped eighty pounds of stress weight leading me to deny rumors on TMZ of my raging eating disorder. I simply had my laser lipo, returned to the gym, and switched to sugar-free popsicles.
Now, lest you think I’m about to bitch about something (which I am wont to do), let me preface this by saying that I feel great and am exceedingly happy with my Final Inches results -so happy that I will be posting the afters just as soon as the film is developed (digitized, uploaded, whatever) from my “after” photo shoot today. The thing is, it just doesn’t feel like a good compliment when someone insists you’ve lost a lot of weight. Doesn’t that imply that I had a lot of weight to lose? Did this guy think I was floating around like the Goodyear blimp oblivious to my insane fattiness and he’s just relieved that I finally got a handle on it? Or am I a paranoid freak?
There was a time back when Elby was about 18 months old, that it came to my attention (and the shrink I began seeing for anxiety) that I needed to go on Zoloft. I started on a dose of 100 milligrams. I was panicked that I’d gain weight. The antidepressants can do that to you. But my shrink assured me that even if I did gain weight it would only be a couple of pounds; a couple pounds I could certainly live with if it meant people could more easily live with me.
Weirdly, I began losing weight. It was fantastic! I wasn’t even trying! As far as I could tell I was carb loading in front of the TV as per usually and exercising with the exact same low intensity I always did, but the weight kept dropping. As I got thinner, the compliments were rolling in so naturally, I figured I must be doing something right. My clothes fit better and then they were too big and I had to go get smaller sizes. Finally, when I was under my thinnest weight even for me, my husband started getting worried.
I mentioned it to my shrink and he said it wasn’t related to the Zoloft because Zoloft doesn’t have a weight loss side effect. I made an appointment with my physician. Meanwhile I got really really skinny. My friends got worried and thought I was anorexic and my husband started pushing Ensure on me six times a day. That when I realized that I really didn’t feel like eating much. I know some of you are reading this and thinking, “Shit, I gotta go get on Zoloft stat!” But it wasn’t a good thing. It didn’t look good.
But let me tell you what’s fucked up: People who hadn’t seen me in awhile would constantly tell me how fantastic I looked. Even when I knew I no longer looked trim, just gaunt, the compliments rolled in. That can really screw with your mind.
It didn’t take Dr. House to figure out the problem though. My doctor ran a few blood tests and then told me that the Zoloft can definitely have a weight loss side-effect and I should decrease the dose right away.
When the dose came down, the weight rose up and slowly but surely I went back to my normal weight and the compliments about my weight stopped. But I looked better. So whatever! Now I don’t trust anyone but myself to tell me whether or not I am in shape, especially not a gay man who is vehemently opposed to a J Lo booty. But I will say that I do definitely look better after my laser lipo. We’ll let the pictures be the judge. More on that soon.