Six Things I have Learned after losing 60 pounds

Victoria Cairl
3 min readApr 2, 2023
My before on the right and my “in-between” on the left

Earlier this year I wrote about having gastric sleeve surgery and vowed for it to not become “all of who I am”. I initially planned on not writing much more about it, but honestly, I wished I had more to read from other people who had been through this process. After all, it’s not just about the “before” and “after” but about the “in-between”. And the in-between is the weirdest part.

Here are the six things I have learned as I am solidly in the middle of my journey.

1) Slow and steady can win the race- My weight is coming off slowly by most standards and I am fine with that. I have gone through several stalls where the weight doesn’t go down for a week at a time. The good news: I am seeing less loose skin so far and I am focused on building strength over shrinking. I have chosen to lift weights, and this slows the pounds falling off, but I prefer to feel some control over what is happening to my body.

2) Daily tasks are easier- I can easily buckle my seat belt on a plane, run upstairs on the subway, scoot by people when grabbing my seat in a theatre. I have lost many “inches”, and this makes the whole world easier to navigate and less embarrassing to deal with.

3) Nothing is going to fit right for a while: figure it out- I am down about three sizes since my surgery in late November. It was fun at first to fit into clothes in my closet that had not fit me in years. But now, I have run out of things that fit. Everything is baggy and I feel like I look weird. I do not want to spend tons of money on new clothes quite yet. So, I am trying to be creative: yoga plants, wrap dresses, tights and buying cheap standard items that I can wear while I transition.

4) Emotionally, it’s a lonely ride. — I was told this and did not understand what it meant. I do not have many people to talk to about what I am feeling. As every pound disappears the emotions, I have had at different sizes resurfaces. While I am loving the newfound confidence I feel, I have identified as fat for so long, it feels like part of who I am and a woman I do love is going away. And yet, there is a sense of revenge that comes over you when you get to see people who told you you’d be heavy forever. You kind of want to call everyone you ever liked who didn’t like you back to say, “hey…