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Old 05-13-2004, 11:46 AM   #16  
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I'm going to try and answer your question Pooks. The thing is, we are all different people and so "your mileage may vary" - KWIM?

I've recommended reading the book Thin for Life by Anne Fletcher so many times that folks here are probably ready to beat me on the head with a pointed stick! Check your library - I'd bet they have it. It's a great place to start.

In Meg's first-anniversary maintenance thread, I posted an excerpt from the findings of a 1990 study which was quoted in Fumento's The Fat of the Land (another great book BTW):

Quote:
Maintainers made decisions to lose weight and then devised personal weight-loss plans to fit their lives. These plans usually included regular exercise or activity and a new eating style of reduced fat, reduced sugar,more fruits and vegetables, and much less food than previously eaten. Maintainers reported being patient, setting small goals that they could meet, and sticking to their personally devised weight-loss plans. Some used ideas from earlier weight-loss experiences, some used diets from books, but all persisted until new eating patterns were established...However, they did not completely restrict favorite foods and made efforts to avoid feelings of deprivation while changing food patterns.

In contrast, few relapsers (36%) had exercised to help lose weight. They had lost weight by taking appetite supressants, fasting, or going on restrictive diets that they could not sustain. They took diet formulas and went to weight-control groups and programs many times. While dieting they did not permit themselves any of the special foods they enjoyed...
The study results follow - pretty interesting IMO (Please note: What the percentages below signify is what percent of each group used a certain method of weight loss. So the percentages for, say, "Attending Weight Watchers" means that 43% of the relapsers and 10% of the maintainers in the study group attended Weight Watchers as a method of weight loss.):

Quote:
Comparision of Weight-Loss Methods Used by Relapsers and Maintainers of Reduced Weight

Devised personal eating plan:
Relapsers - 39%; Maintainers - 73%

Exercised:
Relapsers - 36%; Maintainers - 76%

Attended Weight Watchers:
Relapsers - 43%; Maintainers - 10%

Attended other programs or groups:
Relapsers - 29%; Maintainers - 10%

Followed doctor's orders:
Relapsers - 34%; Maintainers - 20%

Took pills, shots:
Relapsers - 47%; Maintainers - 3%

Fasted:
Relapsers - 11%; Maintainers - 3%

Underwent hypnosis:
Relapsers - 9%; Maintainers - 0%

Followed book, magazine diet:
Relapsers - 25%; Maintainers - 10%

Total methods used:
Relapsers - 121; Maintainers - 28

--Susan Kayman, William Bruvold, and Judith S. Stern, "Maintenance and Relapse after Weight Loss in Women: Behavioral Aspects", American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 52 (November 1990).
I don't personally think of maintenance as hard at this point. There are certain TIMES in the day when it is more difficult than others. For me, that would be in the evening after work - how many of us are accustomed to coming home from work or school and the first place we go is the fridge to see what the Snack Fairy left? Or used to watching prime time TV with a snackie? Well, I'm one of those people...so I have to kind of force myself NOT to do those kind of things. In fact, one of my strategies is to spend as much time OUT OF THE HOUSE as possible - either at the stables, the gym, WORK, going on walks through the neighborhood, the mall (danger area since I do have a tendency to spend...) etc. And sometimes I'll treat myself to a non-food type of thing, like a pedicure or a massage or what have you.

I think another thing that makes maintenance tough for a lot of folks is that they forget where they came from. Being at goal weight for a long time, sometimes you get lazy and forget how yukky it was to be obese. Fortunately for me, I've always been an avid journaler - I have journals dating back to the early 80's when I was totally depressed, poor, FAT and miserable. (I'd have to dig them out). When I got to my highest weight (265) and was keeping my fingers crossed hoping I would be accepted into the Stanford U. study, I wrote PAGES about how terrible I felt, how awful it was to be seen by anyone, how tired I felt at the age of 27 not being able to climb a flight of stairs without getting breathless, how guilty I felt about eating mass quantities of food, how lonely I was...etc. (But on the other hand - I have my HAPPY journals - more pages written as the weight was coming off... )

And when you have everyone else around you apparently eating whatever they want...all that crap...you start thinking, well, shoot, I should be able to eat that too, darn it!!! And shoot, I'm not superhuman or anything - sometimes I will have a treat or two, but I try to keep it during the weekends. And I'll make substitutions - instead of Baskin-Robbins ice cream, Jim and I will go to Yumi Yogurt and have nonfat or Carbolite frozen yogurt. Or instead of having HALF a pizza, I'll have one slice and enjoy it. A lot of the trick to losing weight and keeping it off is PORTION CONTROL. Also maintaining healthy habits - like my habit of getting up at 4 am to go work out. Most people think I'm bananas and I KNOW I am, but if that's what it takes to stay at this level, then that's what I'm going to do. And besides, I enjoy it!

I think for me, most of the trick is staying focused and having a positive attitude. And having hobbies other than food.

I'm sure I missed a LOT in my post, but that's what's coming to mind right now...
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Old 05-13-2004, 12:31 PM   #17  
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Default Why Isn't Maintenance Easier Than Losing?

Pookie — you smart little hamster, you — you asked the million dollar question!
Quote:
I have often heard many people (including Meg & Mel) say that maintaining can be just as hard or even harder than the losing stage. Thinking about HOW MANY people regain the weight after the dieting I guess that must be true. I suppose it has to do with the fact that the losing stage eventually comes to an end but the Maintaining Stage goes on and on and on forever.

BUT here is where my question comes in. The other night I was feeling very sorry for myself because right now I am still at the stage where I am doing all the WORK (ie exercising / drinking TUBS of water / resisting the junk food urges time after time after time)( I wish there was no such thing as home delivery!!!!).
BUT I am not yet to the stage where I am getting ANY of the REWARDS (ie people telling me how nice I look / attractive clothes / feeling HEALTHY & ENERGETIC /feeling like a "normal" person who can blend in with a crowd // fit into airline seats comfortably! etc etc).

So I thought at least the "maintainers" have all those rewards already right now. You can enjoy those rewards everyday. So why doesn't that make maintaining easier than losing?
I don’t have the answers but it’s something I think about A LOT because I know the depressing statistics about weight regain for losers. No one goes to all the trouble to lose a lot of weight with the intention of gaining it back. But it happens and I’m just as interested as Pookie in the reasons why.

I agree with everything that Karen wrote and let me throw out a few more thoughts — and hopefully others will add theirs. If we can figure out “why” the dread regain happens, then perhaps we can come up with a strategy to prevent it.

Not as many rewards: right now you’re not seeing any rewards for all your hard work and it’s discouraging. But I bet if you look, they’re there. I know you’re down at least 30 pounds, probably more by now. Your clothes have to be a little looser. If you look at a photo from a few months ago, I bet there’s a difference. I'm guessing people can see it in your face (that’s first for most of us). Soon the rewards will come fast and furious for you — clothes, compliments, energy, all those good things you talk about. For now you kind of have to go on faith that they’re coming (and they are!)

Once you’re maintaining, the rewards are a little different. True, you’re at your goal weight, which to me is a gift I’ll never grow tired of. BUT … the compliments dry up. Everyone’s used to the “new you”. The scale never budges (downward, at least), regardless of how much you exercise and eat right. You’re not changing clothes sizes every month. And that all leads to …

Complacency: Karen wrote a great post about the dangers of complacency recently: http://www.3fatchicks.com/forum/showthread.php?t=37148 It’s like Karen said in her post:
Quote:
I think another thing that makes maintenance tough for a lot of folks is that they forget where they came from. Being at goal weight for a long time, sometimes you get lazy and forget how yukky it was to be obese.
I'm only three years away from obesity and I swear to God I’ll never forget how it felt — but it probably will fade a bit over time. And then it’s tempting to fall into the “one bite won’t hurt”/"I can get rid of five extra pounds" syndrome ... and then it sneaks back on.

Long term: it’s for the rest of our lives and for me, at least, maintenance takes considerable thought and planning. I still plan my meals, weigh, measure, journal etc. Hopefully it’ll get easier, like Karen says. But it gets tiresome and sometimes I just want a vacation — be mindless and just mindlessly eat. Just for one lousy day.

Wanting to be “normal”: Karen’s right; we look around and the rest of the world seems to be constantly eating all the stuff we can't and we get mad and/or jealous. Why can’t we go out to dinner and just eat “normally”? Why are we scrutinizing the menu for good choices and ordering dressing on the side and passing by the bread and dessert when no one else is? I have to remind myself that “normal” in our country is now overweight and obese (65% of the adult population). Being a healthy weight is now a minority -- wow! So much for wanting to be “normal”, eh?

Stress: most of us eat in response to stress (I’ve personally never understood someone who says they’re “too upset to eat” ). It’s self-medication in a way and when life throws us a curve, we reach for our drug of choice. I suspect that stressful events can take even the most dedicated maintainers and throw them back into destructive eating patterns.

So those are my thoughts about why maintenance -- for me, at least -- seems to be harder than losing. All the work and none of the glory! But seriously, Pookie, I think that both losing and maintaining weight are hard work. Anyone who tells you that losing weight is "easy, quick, and painless" is kidding you. Same with maintenance. But both are totally worth it and I know you'll be seeing it yourself very, very soon.
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Old 05-13-2004, 03:02 PM   #18  
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Quote:
Why can’t we go out to dinner and just eat “normally”? Why are we scrutinizing the menu for good choices and ordering dressing on the side and passing by the bread and dessert when no one else is?
Well.... yesterday I was walking around downtown Portland for hours, and I made a point of looking at what the cute chicks were eating. There's a trendy restaurant every 10 feet in Portland, so it wasn't difficult. And you know what? The cool chicks in Prada shoes and expensive shrunken blazers are eating exotic looking salads, with artistically carved veggies and edible flowers. They have lovely little Japanese porcelain cups filled with low-calorie salad dressing on the side, and they drink exotic mineral waters and green tea. Their main course might be 3 ounces of mahi-mahi with more artsy veggies, decorated with a painterly swirl of beet puree on the plate. And no dessert, except possibly some bizarre fruit that looks like it's from another planet.

Meanwhile Mr. and Mrs. Normal are chowing down on KFC or pizza or nachos, and they are HUGE. So it seems to me that almost NOBOODY can eat like a horse and get away with it forever-- it just catches up with you eventually, even if you are active. It certainly did for me. I'm convinced that slim people (at least the healthy ones) behave somewhat like maintainers. It's a way of life, and not just for the formerly fat.
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Old 05-13-2004, 03:14 PM   #19  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack-150
People speak to me as if my struggle with weight has been won. They tell me how proud they are of me and what I have accomplished. But if I had started out at 6' 240 lbs I would and am still considered grossly overweight. Sometimes I could just reach out and shake them for talking like the battle is won.
I can relate to that! Sometimes I feel guilty telling people that, yes, I'm still trying to lose weight. People think that because I'm so much smaller than I was before, I can't possibly have any more to lose. I think they just can't conceive of me, a formerly obese person, as a non-overweight person. But that's what I'm going to be, no matter what they think.
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Old 05-13-2004, 03:17 PM   #20  
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Pooks - regarding the mall spending...I must say that my hubby Jim is *much* worse than I am in that respect...

When we got our tax refund this year, I spent a portion of it at the Limited on some really cute and BADLY needed tops, and bought a DKNY skirt at Nordstrom. (thank God for the casual office...).

Generally if I have a 'clothes jones' I go to Old Navy. Or sometimes the clearance section of State Line Tack (the website - we don't have a SLT store here in the Big City unfortunately). Went to Old Navy just a week or so ago and got out of there only spending like $30, on some cute beach capris and marked-down T-shirts...
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Old 05-13-2004, 03:44 PM   #21  
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Hi 2sw33t! Glad you're de-lurking (saw you at LWL too)!

That quote of Jack's just jumped off the page at me too! It drives me nuts when people congratulate me for losing the weight like it's over and done with -- I doubt that it will EVER be finished and "the battle won", as Jack so correctly put it.

I get up every morning and fight the same battle over and over again. It's all about making good choices and saying "no" a hundred times a day, as we've talked about here before.

I think I'm prouder now of KEEPING the weight off for two years, but I'm never going to get a "congratulations" for that (except from you guys! ).

Pook -- about eating a bit of something you're craving vs. staying away from it entirely: that's an excellent example of how we're all different when it comes to food and diets. There's no right answer for everyone and we all have to find our own way.

Be sure to come back and share some of those "little rewards" with us! And Pook, about having faith, even when you can't see (or believe) that it's going to happen -- I've got the song "There Will Come A Day" by Faith Hill on my MP3 player and I listened to it every day at the gym while I was losing. It became my song to help me believe that my day WOULD come:
Quote:
There Will Come a Day
It's not easy
Trying to understand
How the world can be so cold
Stealing the souls of man
Cloudy skies rain down
On all your dreams
You wrestle with the fear and doubt
Sometimes it's hard, but you gotta believe

There's a better place
Where our Father waits
And every tear
He'll wipe away
The darkness will be gone
The weak shall be strong
Hold on to your faith
There will come a day
There will come a day

Wars are raging
Lives are shattered
Innocence is lost
And hopes are scattered
The old are forgotten
The children are forsaken
In this world we're living in
Isn't anything sacred

There's a better place
Where our Father waits
And every tear
He'll wipe away
The darkness will be gone
The weak shall be strong
Hold on to your faith
There will come a day
There will come a day

Song will ring out
Down those golden streets
The voices of earth
The angels will sing
Every knee will bow
Sin will have no trace
In the glory of His amazing grace
Every knee will bow
Sin will have no trace
In the glory of His amazing grace
There will come a day
There will come a day
Oh, there will come a day
There will come a day
I know there's coming a day
Coming a day
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Old 05-14-2004, 10:51 AM   #22  
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Red face Happy Friday!!

Good Morning Folks!! Going to be 96° here and !!!

I have a busy day...Have to run a bazillion errands, then off to dinner and ball game with some friends. Thank goodness hubby gets off early. He gets the title of "Mr. Chauffeur". I still can't drive yet or I would go yard saling!! Pfooey!!! I am going to try to get on the "morning" schedule this week. I have a tournament to judge next Saturday and my butt drags when I don't get enough sleep the night before. 10 hours + 1000+ screaming kids = EARPLUGS!!! But I really enjoy the tournaments/judging...I wouldn't do this if I didn't.

Meg: I LOVE that song. It's powerful. And your right..it's never over. I think thats why some people gain the weight back..."Oh I did it!! I reached my goal! Now what??" & they fall back into the old habits. I know I did last time I dropped 60 pounds. The difference this time around is I changed the old habits first before I started this weight loss journey.

Jack: Survivor sings one of my favorite ballads. "The Search Is Over." I have Jim Jamesons autograph around here somewhere...Got it at the fair one night back in the early 80s.

Pookie: Hi POOKIE!!!! Here's a pookie bear for ya!!

Have a good day everybody!! Here's a cute smiley for ya...
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Old 05-14-2004, 11:24 AM   #23  
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i'm so far behind with my posting!!!! but i do have another point or two about rewards, pookie. i've found that the real reward isn't having people compliment me, or having looser clothes. but rather it's the feeling i have of being in conrol. oh of course there are slips. stress eating is a big issue for me. but fortunately the TV time isn't a problem. and i'm with karen on being out of the house. that equals getting away from the stress for me.

substituting different behaviors and realizing that they're even more satisfying than eating is a REAL REWARD. knitting something beautiful in a luscious yarn satisfies that sensual aspect that i need.

so i guess what i'm trying to say is that it's important to realize why you want to eat, what you're REALLY looking for, and making sure that you get what you REALLY want and need. 99% of the time [and that 1% is reserved for when you are hungry!!!] it's not reallly the food you want. it's something else.

and congrats on the doc's compliments!!!! i suspect you now have a very very strong ally in your corner for your surgery and aftercare. make hiim give you what you want, need, and deserve.

gotta go to a meeting... more later, i hope
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Old 05-14-2004, 01:03 PM   #24  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jiffypop
substituting different behaviors and realizing that they're even more satisfying than eating is a REAL REWARD. knitting something beautiful in a luscious yarn satisfies that sensual aspect that i need.
Oh, definitely. I've been meaning to get back into knitting, I've got some silk yarn stashed-- but that's more of a winter thing for me. Anything artistic that feeds the SOUL is great-- painting, sculpture, music, gardening (especially flowers).

And clothes-- it's so hard to find clothes that fit in the mass market, no matter what your size. Yet it's deeply satisfying to put together colors, textures, and shapes that work... and that kind of pleasure is harder to get when you're really fat, as the quality is often appalling and the fabrics tend to be loud frumpy polyester garmento-dreck. Which is so sad, because the last thing a larger woman needs is something that looks cheap, sleazy, and undignified.

OTOH I went into a true designer shop yesterday and looked at Pucci and Prada-- and gosh that stuff is not worth what they are asking! Poorly finished buttonholes, skimpy seams, badly hanging shoulders... quality has taken a dive since the last time I really looked hard at the market. The best values seem to be in the smaller lines, the ones specializing in tailoring, such as Dana Buchman and Anne Klein, and they can be pretty reasonable on sale. Give me a great jacket, Old Navy jeans, killer heels, and I'm good to go.
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Old 05-14-2004, 05:24 PM   #25  
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Funny, but I find I'm always REALLY hungry. I've been really hungry for 3 years. It's not always a matter of head hunger, though that's often a factor for me too. I eat bucketsful of vegetables and salads and what most would consider a more than adequate amount of protein, but I'm still physically hungry I've just accepted the fact that this is the way it's going to be. I'm not losing weight at this point, so I think these are just meaningless mis-wired brain signals.

Seek- I really don't think the ultra exclusive designer clothes were ever "worth" their prices in terms of quality That's not the point. The worth for those who wear them is that most others can't afford them.

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Old 05-14-2004, 09:50 PM   #26  
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Yes, there's certainly the status element. But those brands used to be very, very good, and now it's just <insert yiddish curse word here>. There seems to be a real race to the bottom in clothing, and that spells trouble for the women who make this stuff-- the pittance that they get. The better houses used to pay better, even by the piece. Now several different lines, at several different price points, are contracted out to the same factory, and the ladies don't get the differential. And it shows in the work. I'd gladly pay union, but it's getting very hard to find.
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Old 05-15-2004, 12:12 AM   #27  
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Pook, I've been thinking of your post since I read it a couple of days ago, but have been too busy to reply... Alot of what the girls said is exactly what I wanted to say so I won't repeat it. I also didn't feel justified to answer because I have never been obese. I don't consider a size 14 obese altho it's not a healthy weight to be at at 5'3", and that's where I was a year ago...

What truly hit me about your post is :

Quote:
BUT I am not yet to the stage where I am getting ANY of the REWARDS (ie people telling me how nice I look / attractive clothes / feeling HEALTHY & ENERGETIC /feeling like a "normal" person who can blend in with a crowd // fit into airline seats comfortably! etc etc).
I will never look at an obese person in the same manner again after knowing you, Meg and Karen. I can fit in airline seats, blend in a crowd, people do tell me how nice I look even at a size 14. I feel ashamed now for all the thoughts I've ever had about an obese person. You have made me see that and for that I thank you...

Like the song says, There WILL come a day! Specially if you are doing all the right things like your are, cardio, weights, clean eats... It HAS to happen, it just HAS too. I just hope I'm still here, which I probably will be, to see it happen for you...
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Old 05-15-2004, 08:27 AM   #28  
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Red face Good Morning!!

Well I had a nice time at the ball game. We went to see the Tucson Sidewinders play. They are the triple A league for the Diamondbacks. They won of course!!! I managed to score a frisbee and 4 more tickets for a later game. I'll invite my soul-cousin and his G/F to the next game. We always have a ball.

I did o.k. with the eats. I had a BBQ Beef sandwich and cole slaw & some kettle popcorn & lots of water of course. Then we went to the night swap meet and walked around for 1½ hours. I scored on the vegetables there. Bought 4 cucumbers, 4 tomatoes, 4 onions, 1 head of lettuce, & 2 avocados for $5.25!! The tomatoes would cost me that alone at the grocery store. Plus the veggies at the swappers seem a bit fresher than the grocery store ones. By the time we left, I had sucha bad headache from my eyes that I came home and went straight to bed. They are healing better & faster than expected so they are outgrowing the temporary glasses I have.

So my "trying to get back on the morning schedule" is semi-working. Although I only slept from 11:30 am till 4:30 am. Today my only plans are to clean the rat cages and take the kid to the kid ID fair. Hopefully I can talk the hubby into some tennis later. If not then I'll just go for a walk and a swim. I'm starting to get "flappy" again...can't let that happen!! No No!!

Have a good day/weekend all!!! Drink your water.
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Old 05-15-2004, 09:16 AM   #29  
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Pookster -- Once AGAIN your post hit me! Because now when I do see someone overweight I think or wonder how she's doing on her workout or foodplan. Specially when I see them at the gym and later at the store. And who cares what the thin people think anyways. Like me they may be thinking that they saw you not long ago and you've lost weight or thre is something different about you. Have you thought of that one? BTW I WILL be around to cheer you!!

Hi Jack You're right there should be a sign in the unimportant isles!

Noodles -- How you doing? I guess I don't need to ask you that! You are just smokin' there and you seem to have everything under control these days even with the eye surgery... Lucky you no glasses, I wish! I wear, GP contact lenses only because I MUST. I too in a few years will need eye surgery, a corneal transplant...Yuck! I am so not looking forward to that! I hope it's a long ways away I won't think about it now...


Later all!
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Old 05-15-2004, 10:02 AM   #30  
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Talking Hi, Lanaii!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lanaii1
Noodles -- How you doing? I guess I don't need to ask you that! You are just smokin' there and you seem to have everything under control these days even with the eye surgery... Lucky you no glasses, I wish! I wear, GP contact lenses only because I MUST. I too in a few years will need eye surgery, a corneal transplant...Yuck! I am so not looking forward to that! I hope it's a long ways away I won't think about it now..


I am hanging in there. I still have to get contacts, but I will be GLAD to be rid of glasses!! Well I will get a spare pair just in case but...all be damned if I will wear them unless necessary!! I have been in glasses almost all of my life because my eye muscles were so badly damaged from injuries that contacts would of still not let me see right. They had a prism in my glasses. The eye surgery repaired the muscles and took my eyes to where I won't need the prism anymore, and thus no glasses. No cross-eyes. No more double vision. Yippee!! Now its just 1 big blur instead of 2 blurs. I will appreciate and love my contacts. Until I can go find out about LAZIK that is..
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