And The Seasons They Go Round & Round | Doctor Neil Floch


Seasons Go Round

“The winter here’s cold, and bitter
It’s chilled us to the bone
We haven’t seen the sun for weeks
To long too far from home
I feel just like I’m sinking
And I claw for solid ground
I’m pulled down by the undertow
I never thought I could feel so low”

Those are the opening lines to Sarah McLachlan’s song “Full of Grace.” They always come to me front and center in the winter and as I write this, it is snowing, the wind is blowing and the prognosticators are warning about over a foot of new snow in a storm that will last for about the next 36 hours or so.

Alittle more than 5 years ago, I was aging and morbidly obese. I was pushing 400 lbs. on a 5’6” frame and when we had weather like this it scared me since I am also obsessive about clearing the snow as soon as I can. I have the luxury of having a very reliable plow person but that didn’t prevent me (much to my wife’s dismay) from going out every few hours, raking the roof (yes we get some ice dams) and clearing the back deck. When I was that large I was clearly an “accident” waiting to happen, though luckily nothing did.

Zoom ahead (oh how the word Zoom has taken on new meanings these days), I’ve had very successful sleeve surgery. I’m down an adult and a quarter weight wise; I’m active, but still this morning I was out shoveling the deck and raking some of the roof (we’ve had a heater cable installed in a particularly difficult section to hopefully avoid the ice dam issue there…today is the big test). There are differences though today. I don’t dread it now. I look forward to the activity, I also have taken on some of my wife’s outlook that sooner rather than later, this will stop. It will be cleared and as the season starts to change, so will the landscape of snow and ice.

Self care? Self awareness? I don’t think so. I think a realization partly due to the overwhelming time spent at home due to the current (but hopefully also on the wane) health crisis, that things do move in their own time and the things we can’t control should really be left alone.

Iwas able to control my weight. It took a long time and a lot of help and the intercession of a very wise Doctor (who I now actually consider a friend; Dr. Neil Floch), that I continue to be conscious about. I can (and did) plan a summer trip to the ocean with great hope that by then another season will have rolled around both in terms of weather and health.

Next year, around this same time, I will have the same feelings about the weather; but now, I’ll choose to relax, read, listen, plan, and most of all remember that we are lucky to go PO in the circle game. Likely, by the time you read this, constant reader, I will have cleaned my golf clubs and will be frustrated not by the snowfall, but by the lack of consistency (and a significant loss of distance due to age) but I will be strolling in the sun over a beautiful setting.


Kevin Fitzpatrick, Dr. Neil Floch’s gastric sleeve patient with over 180 lb. weight loss


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