I am aware that I did not share the details of the interview with 20/20 this week in my previous post about the show. I wasn't purposely keeping anything from you, in fact I wished I had documented the process as it happened, but I only had a phone and it happened so. very. fast.
Ironically, the person interviewed after I was done, had theirs videotaped. I wish I had done that. Then again, she was a Person Of Importance, so they likely do that.
I was picked up by a car service at my house, whisked off to the airport, and I took the Boston > LaGuardia Delta shuttle to NYC. I was thrilled by HOW FAST the flight was and the whole process in LaGuardia and I will DO IT ANY TIME. And, I have the whole plane fear, but this was not bad. By the time my head dropped in sleep, we landed. That works for me. Very much so. Typically, I am head bobbing in a plane for HOURS, jumping out of my skin.
I was whisked from the airport to the Millennium Hotel in NYC, where I had room 1818. Insert mini-review here: And this is when I realized New York is weirdly inhospitable or I am just spoiled. My other trips to NY have been in one boutique hotel with OAC, and two chain hotels with Obesity Help.com, all were nice. I had a discussion with the bell-man later in the trip regarding the lack of amenities in this particular hotel that was not cheap (Thank you ABC, very very much…) Two towels. One tiny soap. I didn't dare touch the internet access or room service.
I walked to Duane Reed and bought water and crackers. I found Starbucks. "Yay!" I found myself in a post flight coma for a while, watching TV, and then a local friend came to play. We walked around NYC and got some food at a side street bar. After she left past midnight, I forced myself to sleep and woke up every 5 minutes checking the time.
I got up, ready, and down to the hotel lobby to be whisked again, via cab to the shooting location. For a moment my mind slipped into Law and Order mode as I was brought to a quite un-labeled warehouse. Eek. Of course it was just a loft — with all of the production equipment — but you'd never know from the outside.
After a quick cup of coffee from the spread, I met Deborah Roberts who came flying in from the rain and was rearing to go. We chatted off camera about the topics for a while, an I wasn't so nervous until the cameras were rolling. I told her that, that I would have been fine if they never mentioned the cameras GOING on.
I was somewhat aware of the things I would be asked on camera, but no lie, it was hard.
I have a hard time referring to myself and using "I" statements and I think that's what they were digging for. I often put myself on the fence about issues, and it's very difficult to say "I would, I do, I would have…" if I am not sure about something.
I almost feel like they expected a more upsetting weight gain or regain story from me, about me, and I just did not have it to offer. I left it open – you know? I am a never say never kind of girl, because it CAN happen, and DOES happen. It's reality. I do NOT feel that saying that CAUSES regain. It's just being aware of the possibilities.
As for possibilities –We didn't get into my health — and I am sort of glad about that. I don't need the outside drama of "Well, if you didn't eat toast, you wouldn't have epilepsy now!" Thanks, but no thanks. I do not know if the producers offer any insight into my history on the show, or if I am just shown as a post op who blogs about WLS because of her health, or not. It's a bit of a circular conversation.
The interview itself was based mostly on the realities of going in to weight loss surgery with knowledge, did I feel like I got enough schooling, do others get enough education, what's missing from that part of the journey, and what it's really like as a post op, the honeymoon period, and the crash.
What happens then?
When asked about the most pressing issues in our weight loss surgery community, I shared my honest thoughts as they came to me. I told them that the biggest issues I see are addictions and the lack of post op emotional and psychological follow up, care and help. Because They Are.
You guys worried about your size six jeans and Does Your Butt Look Flat and OMG I ATE 600 calories today. You make me use exclamation points!!! EXCESSIVELY!!!!
WLS is for MORBID OBESITY WHICH CAUSES THE DEATH.
Death is bad. It's like, for-ever.
Bariatric surgery is not indicated for use to get your smaller ass on a surgeon's billboard or into Louboutins.
/end miniature rant
And, I think that stance is why I was contacted to be on the show. I might have said this, in much nicer terms.
I think they might have been pleased intrigued… something…. if I had dropped some bombs or secrets about my own issues, but the most I could offer is that I never really lost touch with food (which I admit wholly) added massive amounts of coffee, blogging? Having just had a quick discussion about Carnie Wilson with Deb Roberts about addiction: alcohol, (and baking cheesecakes!) my own answers were less than exciting. Because, I'm just a regular person who never posed for Playboy!
However, having been in this weight loss surgery community, watching with a bird's eye view sometimes, it's obvious and vastly ignored.
Many of us — you — are addicts. To what? That's your secret. But it's the truth.
I have some fears about this show after it airs. I am not sure how the whole thing will play out after it is edited and pieced together. I realized that I was being captured as a buffer to the woman who has had weight loss surgery not long ago, and still in a honeymoon phase of the whole journey. I don't think I portrayed the Angry Post Op, in fact, I think I might have downplayed it if I was.
I called myself a success, damn it.
While I was honest and open, I know that some people WILL jump on it and whine about how WLS Saved Their Lives and how I am some kind of ungrateful bitch. I have received hate mail over MUCH less, so I know that going on National TV is going to cause an influx, even if I am saying the SAME THINGS I write here every single day.
I am prepared for the onslaught of commenters who will give me their stories of post weight loss surgery perfection. It is a given. Again, it depends on the way the piece is edited, because I only told the truth, and if I am pieced together in sound-bites, it could be slanted good or bad. Honestly, I think it's going to be a bit dramatic, or slightly less than. They threw out the words, "Weighty Secrets" on Twitter, to describe the episode… which is also the title to my other blog.
So. There's that.