Cyndie discusses how the relationship with her son changed after undergoing gastric bypass surgery.
My 8-year-old son has shown me things I didn’t even realize were there. We had gone to an amusement park, and I have always asked my 8-year-old, “Hold my hand,” and he won’t, and I always thought, he was trying to be cool, you know, whatever. Well when we were there, at this amusement park, there was a mom and her son walking in front of us, and this mom was large, and her son was older than my son and I said, “Look, he is holding his mom’s hand. You know, there’s nothing to be ashamed of. It’s okay to love your mom.”
And I said, “Why won’t you hold my hand?” And this is after I have had my procedure and lost half of this weight, he says, “Yeah, and she is big too, Mom,” and it was like a revelation that I think he was embarrassed. And it made me feel so bad because I never realized how it affected him that I was the size I was, and that was just unbelievable. I couldn’t believe it. It was just astounding to me, you know, that this 8-year-old child was affected that deeply.
And then I came to think, you know, the kids at school have said things to him, and I know they have, you know, and that’s probably where it came from–his embarrassment. And my 5-year-old is still so little that, you know, it doesn’t affect him, but if I hadn’t done anything, eventually it would have affected him too. So for me that, you know, everybody tells me, “Why have you done this surgery?” And in the beginning I used to say, “It’s because I have at the time a 4-year-old and an 8-year-old, and I want to be around to see them graduate.”
I’ll be 40 years old this year and I have small children, and I want to see my children graduate. And so, they would tell me, “You know, we appreciate that you are saying it’s for your children, but you need to understand that this was done for you.” And, the further along I’ve come in this, I do realize it was done for me, for my health benefits, for myself, but they are what is most important to me. And so, for him to basically show me without even realizing that he showed me what this did to him, how it affected him, you know, weight, you know, how heavy I was, it was just astonishing. I couldn’t believe it.
And now he holds my hand, and even though I don’t want my son to be superficial, that’s not what it’s about, but he has pride too. He has that in him too. He wants to be proud of his mom. He wants to say, “Hey look, she is beautiful,” you know, and not be embarrassed, and so I can’t take that away from him. It’s not something he should have to deal with, you know?