Ok so here’s a good one. Anyone know what ‘omphalophobia‘ is? Fear of belly buttons :). How about ‘alliumphobia‘? (hint: vampires have it). Yup fear of garlic. What about ‘hippopotomonstrosesquipedaliphobia‘?? Ok so this is just not funny but it’s the fear of long words (someone out there besides myself has a warped sense of humour).
True confession, I am afraid of spiders. That would probably (most definitely) be putting it mildly. I have an irrational, ridiculous fear/fascination with the horrible beasts, and anyone who is around me when I come within 5 feet of one is soon aware of this. Years ago I even went to a spider phobia clinic where I was ‘desensitized’ to the disgusting creatures by gradually being exposed to larger and larger specimens (without stomping the revolting critters with my shoe). And believe it or not it worked! After a mere 8 hours I had spiders crawling on my arms and legs and I WAS OK!!!
After proudly graduating with honours from my arachnophobia-desensitization-course I was told that to maintain my healthy, positive relationship with the ugly blights on the planet I was to ‘play’ with them regularly. Of course that didn’t happen which is why around two years ago I didn’t hesitate to summon my elderly mother up to my room to balance precariously on my bed, risking a fall and a broken hip and goodness knows what else to kill a spider on my ceiling…I’m still a little ashamed about that one although I did hand her the broom.
The fact is we all have healthy ‘normal’ fears (fire, exposed electrical wires, being caught in white pants after Labour Day) and most of us have the odd irrational phobia. I however have discovered and named a new Lap-band specific fear and I am calling it ‘the-world-is-going-to-come-to-an-end-if-I-get-a-defill-phobia‘. Can anyone reading this blog figure out what that is?? Does anyone perhaps…have it? Just as half of all women have a fear of spiders (I’m not so weird after all, at least not in that sense), I am predicting that around half of all banded individuals may have this phobia.
I just received an email yesterday from a patient. She is not unique (well she is in fact…we all are unique and she is a super kind, intelligent woman) in her suffering and her fear. With her permission I copied below a part of her email:
“Sweet relief!! I didn’t think I could possibly get instant relief, but I did. The acid discomfort was intense and was immediately relieved before I left your office and IT HAS NOT RETURNED SINCE, not once, not even slightly. I cannot believe that I lived with the pain for soooooo long and the solution was soooooo simple. What was I thinking?!”
I know what she was thinking, we all know what she was thinking: ‘If I get a defill I will gain weight’ (also known as the-world-is-going-to-come-to-an-end-if-I-get-a-defill-phobia). This is not a weird, uncommon phobia, say like genuphobia **. It is however one that needs to be exposed for the unnecessary fear that it is and more importantly for the harm it causes.
Being too tight makes you miserable. You can’t tolerate healthy solid foods. You get awful acid reflux/heartburn. You may get fluid and/or acid regurgitation at night. You end up eating crap because that’s all that goes down without pain. You often get pouch dilatation. And you usually gain weight. A total lose-lose situation with a very easy remedy: a simple, and usually small, defill. SOOOO MUCH EASIER THAN HAVING SPIDERS CRAWL ON YOU!!!
So I want a promise right now from anyone reading this who suspects they are too tight: promise me you will contact your clinic to discuss your symptoms and follow their direction even if it is a defill. PROMISE ME. I go to a lot of effort writing these blogs so its the least you can do right?!! (How’s that for some Presbyterian guilt ;)). I guarantee you will find that, just like my patient above found out, it is a simple solution with immediate positive effects that will result in your having a much healthier relationship with your band.
And to finish things off here we all need to remember to count our blessings, so with that in mind be happy you don’t suffer from anatidaephobia especially with the wet weather upon us…you’ll never guess this one: fear of a duck watching you :):).
Yours in health and happiness quack quack,
(** fear of knees!)