Monday, November 30

Ahhhh, relief.

First, thanks for all the supportive comments last night. I was feeling a bit guilty about the whole thing, but I'm going to try something new - letting go of the guilt! So, I did what was right for me - and no more guilt.

Those 2 oz of protein shake definitely took the edge off and I was feeling soooo much better. Thank goodness - I was becoming homicidal.

I'm sipping on about 3 oz more right now and will see how it settles. As long as it goes well, I'm going to have three protein shake meals today. And really, it's just today and tomorrow, as I can start full liquids on Wednesday (pureed soups, sf yogurt, and sf pudding). It will be heavenly. Ohhhh, I also get to weigh myself on Wednesday - can't wait!

In other breaking news, I just scheduled my first fill - Jan 5 - one day shy of 6 weeks. That's my surgeon's schedule, which is fine with me. Of course, I'd love it a little sooner, but I'll play by his rules.

I'm off today, the kids are at the sitter, the hubby is at the doc, and it is quiet (at least until hubby gets home.) One relaxing day to get a few things done before I get back into the grind tomorrow.

Sunday, November 29

In the interest of keeping both arms...

...I broke down and am sipping some protein shake instead of eating an arm off.

I am so. very. hungry.

Like headache, stomache, nauseated, shaking hungry.

I just couldn't do it any longer. After reading other blogs and LBT, I realized I was one of *very* few who wasn't drinking protein drinks nearly 5 days post-op. And while my surgeon said TEN days, my nutritionist said three days. I'm sure she has some kind of degree, right?

It's kind of bothering me, since I am a total rule-follower and wanted to do this perfectly, by the letter, to the "T".

But when I called my mom sobbing about how miserable I am, she talked me into trying just a bit. Wise woman that she is, she said this is about discipline, not misery and torture. And she's right.

So, instead of feeling like I broke the rules (which will drive me bonkers! Yes, I am type-A, just a bit!), I will instead think of them as guidelines, and what I am doing fits within the guidelines.

Now I'm just hoping the guilt doesn't eat me alive (get it? eat? ha!)

Four always was my lucky number.

Today is day 4 since surgery, and I woke up feeling 95% better! I still get a muscle twinge if I move the wrong way. And I'm not picking up either kiddo until at least two weeks post-op (hard when you have a just-turned-two-year-old and a 7-month old).

My tummy, however, well, that's another story. I'm such a lucky gal, and my period started on top of everything else this morning. And I'm still on totally clear liquids, which is not appeasing my tummy one bit. Let's just say I'm not constipated. Ugh.

But really, I feel so much better than I imagined I would today, so I am not complaining. DD and I took a long walk - I walked while she pushed her doll in a stroller. It felt good to get out and get some fresh air and do some real movement.

I'm holding off on full liquids until Wed. My dietician said today, my surgeon said next Sat. I am splitting the difference. My executive call. The tomato soup is calling my name!

Friday, November 27

Oh, you wanna know about my surgery? OK...

Just a quick recap of the last few days.

We had to be at the hospital by noon on Wednesday. I was feeling a bit nervous, but mostly just THIRSTY! We got there, and I had to do a bunch of pre-op testing while DH had to wait in the surgical lounge.

My pre-op testing consisted of an EKG (normal), urine workup (not pregnant - yeah!), blood work (my coagulant was a bit high but everything else was good). About 1:30 pm, DH was allowed to join me, and in between the surgical team coming to talk to me, they gave me the relaxant drug. I can't remember what it was, but it sent me into fits of hysterics. I was laughing so hard I was crying!

All of a sudden it was 3 pm, they whisked me off to the surgery room, and it was on! I am a little hazy on the details here, as I was a bit high - hee hee. I remember being told to take a few deep breaths, and the next thing I knew, I was awake in recovery.

I had a bit of a tough time staying awake in recovery. I had shoulder pain for which the nurse gave me Dilaudid. Let's just say I could not keep my eyes open. I wasn't breathing deep enough and the dumb machine kept beeping at me, but I finally got it together.

Once I was ready to go to my room, I was still a bit groggy. DH took some nice pics of me - I will post later, but I am sure they are hilarious, as I could not even open my eyes! I am a wimp when it comes to pain meds.

I had one more shot of morphine about 11 pm that night and haven't had anything since. I'm not pain-free, but it's not bad.

The roughest part of the stay was the lack of somewhere for DH to sleep - he ended up sleeping on the floor, poor guy. We asked for a cot four different times to no avail. He's a trooper.

After getting home yesterday, I had a hard time getting comfy, but wasn't in real pain, if that makes sense. Just more edgy and couldn't figure out what I wanted.

I finally fell asleep about 10 pm last night in one of our recliners in the family room. About 3 am, I shifted to the couch, and about 5 am, I shifted to our bed.

I managed a shower and a 3 hour nap today. Sipping on some G2 since water seems to give me heartburn. Hmmmm, I have a friend who had gastric bypass 5 years ago and still struggles with water giving her heartburn. I hope I'm not the same, as I love water!

Anyhow, I'm on 10 days of clear liquids (no protein shakes) per the surgeon. The dietician said 3 days, so it'll probably be somewhere in between, since I can't imagine 10 days of clear liquids. We'll see...

My only real complaint is my stomach is grumbling and hungry, but I am not hungry. It's just a bit of a uncomfortable sensation. Anyone else have this? Will it go away?

Later, my banded friends!

Thursday, November 26

Home again, home again, jiggity jig

We got home about 1:30 pm today. It would have been about 30 min sooner had we not hit traffic from the parade and Packers/Lions game trying to get out of downtown Detroit.

A few highlights from the past two days:

1. I have a Lap-band AP Large, for what it's worth.

2. My surgeon does the first fill at 6 weeks and is aggressive with his fills.

3. My surgical nurse was banded in 2004 and has lost 167 lbs!

4. I am supposed to be on clear liquids (no protein shakes) for 10 days. Anyone else have to do this?

5. The pain still isn't that bad. I haven't had pain meds since about 11 pm last night. I hope I can continue, as pain meds have a tendency to make me puke, which I am obviously scared to do.

Other than just being tired, I'm feeling OK. Not fantastic, but pretty darned good all things considered. Thanks for all the kind thoughts and words - they really, really helped!

La la la la la la...

Can you tell what that is?

I'm singing with the BAND - just singing with the BAND - what a glorious feeling, I'm singing with the BAND!

Yep, I'm banded. It went well. I did have a hernia that was repaired. Minimal pain. Much, much less than my laproscopic gall bladder surgery and my c-section, so I am thankful!

More later, but so glad to be on the portside.:)

Wednesday, November 25

Apparently, the only thing I've eaten is butterflies!

My tummy is a flutterin' away!

It's here. Banding day. The BIG event!

I lost another 6 lbs this week, bringing my pre-op diet total to 23.4 lbs. I'm beyond thrilled with that!

I have to be at the hospital at 1 and am guessing the surgery will be around 3 or so. We did find out that we have wireless, so I will check in again on the portside, as shrinkingmommy so pun-ly put it (love it!)...see you then!

Tuesday, November 24

Tomorrow, tomorrow, I love you, tomorrow...

Anyone recognize the tune? Yep. Sung by the cute Little Orphan Annie.

Did I ever mention I tried out to be in a local production of Annie when I was about 9? This was a very bad idea for a variety of reasons.

I can't sing.

I can't act.

Did I mention I can't sing? Singing is kind of the point of a musical.

I was so petrified when it was my turn to sing with the piano that you couldn't even hear me OVER the piano. In retrospect, that was probably a blessing given how well I don't sing.

Oops, got off on a tangent there.

So, tomorrow. Tomorrow is the big day. I'm starting to flip out a bit. Like most sane people, I'm not too keen on surgery. The whole cutting me open bit makes me a bit squeemish. And I don't do well with anesthesia. I tend to vomit and have a hard time coming out of it. Fortunately, most of the anti-nausea drugs work pretty well for me, so I am hopeful I don't have a tough time with it this time.

Today is clear liquids only. The usual suspects plus I'm allowed to have apple juice. WOOHOO for apple juice! I don't even like apple juice, but it tastes pretty darn heavenly this morning after two weeks of protein shakes.

I am working until about 2:30, then it's off to the derm to remove my stitches and hopefully get the all clear on the melanoma front, then to pick up a few odds and ends at the store, and then HOME to pack and chill with the kids. My mom is coming tonight to stay with the kids, as DH will be staying with me.

I'm sure I'll check back in before tomorrow. I tried to find out last night if the hospital has wireless or not, but we'll probably take the laptop regardless. I sure hope it does - what will I do without the internet?!?!?!

Monday, November 23

"As long as you don't get skinnier than me."

Told to me by my friend this weekend.

A little back story:
Friend and I met several years ago. We both needed to lose some weight, me more than her. We did Weight Watchers Core together long-distance and both had great success. I lost 60 lbs (still had about 90 to go), she lost about 40 to get to her goal weight. Then I got pregnant, gained it all back plus some, and haven't ever truly gotten back on the bandwagon since. She's been off and on the bandwagon since then, and has managed to only gain back 20 lbs at the most. She recently got back to her goal weight for her wedding in June, but has gained some of it back.

We both love to cook and like to exercise (when I'm not so fat, it's so much more fun!), so our friendship has revolved around cooking healthy, trying new exercise (spinning, running, etc.), and sharing recipes/cooking ideas.

Back to this weekend: She is one of two friends I told about my surgery. I wasn't even necessarily going to tell her, but she was coming to visit for the weekend, and I am on my pre-op diet. Plus, with her own weight struggles, I thought she'd be a good support. And really, she is being pretty supportive.


She obviously has some issues with me having the surgery. She's made some random comments here and there, and while they bothered me, I just kind of brushed them off (Example: When referring to this upcoming year and my surgery, "It's going to be a rough year, but I know you can do it." Rough? I was thinking awesome!)

And her issues came to light when I was showing her some of the Before & Afters on LBT this weekend. It obviously dawned on her that I truly am going to lose this weight. And I might not just be not-fat, but I might be skinny. And that comment came rolling out of her mouth. I was stunned. I should have said something, but I didn't.

After thinking about it, I realize that this is more about her than me. It's about her insecurities and her issues with her weight.

However, it was a bit of a wake up call about how my relationships may change as I lose weight. I never thought that my friends thought of me as their "fat friend" but obviously some do. It's going to be an interesting journey.

In other breaking news, I am 54 hours away from surgery! Drinking my last pre-op-protein-shake-breakfast as we speak. I hope to get my bag packed tonight, so we can have a nice relaxing family night tomorrow night.

Friday, November 20

Just call me Ms. Cranky Pants

Work sucked today. Four hour meeting. A coworker cooked her butt off last night and brought in ALL kinds of goodies that I had to stare at for four hours. Oh, and she baked one of them DURING the meeting, so it smelled heavenly. It was really, really, really hard to resist. Bowls of candy on the tables. I was sitting there thinking, I probably easily ate 1000+ calories at a meeting like that in the past. Mindlessly.

Anyhow, got home and...

DD was cranky.

DS was kinda cranky.

DH is VERY cranky. D stands for damn tonight.

Cranky + liquid diet = Ms. Cranky Pants

I've only got 3 more days of protein shakes and then 1 day of clear liquids and then surgery. I can do this, right? I am so hungry for something, I almost had a pickle. With only 15 calories, I figured it wouldn't hurt. But I resisted...I just want to be able to say I did this without even the slightest cheat.

On brighter notes, one of my dear friends is coming from Chicago this weekend. YEAH! I've told her about the surgery and she's going to drink protein shakes with me. What a friend!

Thursday, November 19

Getting to know me - bloggy style

Since all the other cool bloggin' bandsters are doing it, I want to, too!

- Age: 34
- Annoyance: Intolerance of pretty much any kind, Paula Deen
- Animal: We have 3 cats. Sigh. I love animals, but would love a dog instead.
- Actor: I have two young kids. I forget what it's like to watch a movie!

- Beer: Guinness!
- Birthplace: Syracuse, NY
- Body Part on opposite sex: Smile
- Been in Love: Still am.
- Been bitched at: Once or twice. I tend to hold my ground pretty well.
- Believe in yourself?: I do! I do!
- Believe in God: I believe in my own version.
- Before weight: 374.4 lbs. Ugh. This is why no one IRL will ever see this blog.

- Car: Pontiac Aztek. I love it!
- Candy: Chocolate with caramel and/or peanut butter
- Color: turquoise
- Cried in school: I don't remember a specific incident, but I have no doubt that I did many times.
- Chocolate/Vanilla: Chocolate
- Chinese/Mexican: Oh, both! Probably mexican
- Cake or pie: Yellow cake mix cake with chocolate canned frosting. Not a big fan of pie.
- Country to visit: Denmark

- Day or Night: Night
- Do the splits?: I wanted to desperately, but alas, no.

- Eggs: Pretty much any way, but my favs are hard-boiled and poached
- Eyes: Greeny-hazel - have no idea where they came from since both my parents are blue-eyed?!?!?!

- First crush: Andrew in sixth grade. Ahhh, he was so cute!
- First thoughts waking up: Are the kids still sleeping? Yes? Then so am I!
- Food: On week 2 of liquids. I am dreaming of ALL food. :)

- Greatest Fear: Losing one of my kids
- Goals: To live a long, healthy, active life with my family
- Get along with your parents?: I have the world's best parents. They are paying for my lap-band and love me unconditionally. I talk to my mom probably 3x/day and my dad at least a few times per week.
- Good luck charm: Nah.

- Hair Colour: Dirty blonde
- Height: 5'10"
- Happy: 95% of the time.
- Holiday: Used to be Thanksgiving, now I'm thinking Christmas
- Health freak?: No, but I know enough to be annoying!
- Hate: The fact that we can't afford insurance for my husband through my employer ($1100/month) and he can't get private insurance (high blood pressure) and people say we don't need a public insurance option?

- Ice Cream: Chocolate with lots of stuff in it
- Instrument: Not musically inclined at all. My two-year old daughter asks me to stop singing all the time.

- Jewelry: Love my wedding/engagement set - blue topaz center stone instead of a diamond. Love it! Other than that, I wear a chunky silver bracelet my daughter "got" me for my first mother's day and then everything else is loud, funky, chunky costume jewelry. The bigger and louder, the better.
- Job: communications manager

- Kids: 2 - DD just turned two 4 days ago and DS is 7 months old. Yes, I am constantly tired!
- Kickboxing or karate: Kickboxing!
- Keep a journal? I have several blogs - does that count?

- Longest Car Ride: 20+ hours from northern OH to southern FL
- Love: Doesn't have to be a wild ride; a nice mellow, friendship-based love can be so much mor fulfilling
- Laughed so hard you cried: All. the. time. I do this several times a week!
- Love at first sight: Romantic love - no. Parent-child love - yes.

- Milk flavor: None. Gag me with a spoon.
- Movie: See Actor category. I miss movies!
- Mooned anyone?: Guilty!
- Marriage: 3.5 years and we're both still alive!
- Motion sickness? Nope.
- McD’s or BK: Both!!!!

- Number of Siblings: 1 brother, 32
- Number of Piercings: 3 in each ear, one in the upper ear lobe, and navel. Only wear in the lowest ear holes now.
- Number: 4

- One wish: To be uber-successful with the band!

- Place you’d like to live: Phoenix, Tampa, anywhere with a better economy than here!
- Perfect Pizza: Tomatoes, pepperoni, sausage, bacon, ham, onions, mushrooms, banana peppers - basically the works!
- Pepsi/Coke: Diet Pepsi and regular Coke. I despise regular Pepsi and Diet Coke. Oh well, doesn't matter since I won't be drinking them anymore!

- Questionaires: Duh.

- Reason to cry: Watching my kids play together - it always makes me cry! I'm a total sap.
- Reality T.V.: Any MTV stuff designed for teenyboppers. I love it!
-Roll your tongue in a circle? Yes

- Song: The One Who Knows by Dar Williams
- Shoe size: 9.5-10
- Salad Dressing: Bleu Cheese or Greek
- Skipped school: Enough.
- Smoking: Nope.
- Sing well?: No.
- Strawberries/Blueberries: I love all berries, but can I choose blackberries? My fav!

- Time for bed: 10:30-11
- Thunderstorms: Deathly terrified.
- TV: We watch WAY too much.

- Unpredictable: Me!

- Vegetable you hate: Celery, any type of bean (I know they're not veggies, but I hate them anyway!)
- Vegetable you love: avocado, asparagus, BRUSSEL SPROUTS, mushrooms, tomoatoes, onions
- Vacation spot: A warm beach in the Caribbean...I'm not even picky about what beach!

- Weakness: I cry easily. Happy, sad, mad, glad, overwhelmed.
- When you grow up: I want to live in a retirement community and drive a golf cart!
- Which one of your friends acts the most like you: None, really.
- Wanted to be a model?: Nope.

-X-Rays: Just had them done on my teeth yesterday!.

-Year it is now: 2009
-Yellow: Add some green and you've got Green Bay Packers!

- Zoo: We are supporters of our local zoo.
- Zodiac sign: Aquarius!

Wednesday, November 18

I lied! I LOVE this protein shake diet!

So, I hope you are sitting down. Seriously. Take a seat before you read this. Well, you probably are already sitting since you are most likely using your computer to read this. Unless you are one of the cool kids who surfs the internet with their phone. But I digress...

7 days of protein shakes and not a bite of solid food. 7 days of not-so-much-fun. 7 days of FAT-busting, liver-shrinking goodness. That's what it was!

Because guess how much I lost in 7 days?

17.4 lbs!

Yep. You read that right. 17.4 lbs.

I can hardly believe it!

The funny thing is when I first saw the number, I did the math real quick and thought I lost 14.4 lbs. And I was ecstatic with that. Then I was thinking about where I might be next week and the numbers weren't adding up. So I re-did my math and realized I had been WRONG. 17.4 lbs!

I'm still in shock. Although this has certainly given me the motivation to keep going for another 7 days!

Tuesday, November 17

And then there were 20.

Day 7. Finally. 7 days left. But more importantly, only 20 shakes left (I am on total clear liquids the day before surgery.) Yes, I know I will be drinking them for 2 weeks after surgery, but I'm not focusing on that right now, thankyouverymuch.

In some ways this has been easier than I anticipated, and in some ways, it's been harder than I anticipated. Now that I really think about it, the head hunger has been the harder part than the stomach hunger.

For you veteran bandsters out there, how is bandster hell worse than this? I can't imagine! Did anyone try doing a low-carb diet while waiting for restriction? I know I just said I wasn't going to think ahead, but I lied. Now I am curious as to how to make the bandster hell period as least hellish as possible. If that's possible!

Monday, November 16

Since we're closing in on the big day...

I figured it would do me good to get down, in writing, the reasons I am getting banded. I mean, obviously, I'm getting banded to lose weight, but that's really the side effect I'm looking for. I'm more excited about the other reasons, those that come along with weight loss. Hmmm, maybe that didn't make much sense. Let me try again. I'm more interested in achieving these than the actual number I lose.

So, here's my list of "Why I'm Getting Banded" (this will probably become a permanent part of one of my sidebars and I will continue to add to it):

1. To be able to paint my toes and breathe simultaneously.
2. To be able to shave my legs and breathe simultaneously.
3. To be able to play with my kids on the floor without my legs going numb within 30 seconds.
4. To be able to fly to lots of fun places with my family and not have them wonder why mommy is using an extra seat belt.
5. To be able to wear the seat belt in my husband's car without having to breathe shallowly the whole trip (damn Isuzus!).
6. To be able to run up a set of stairs without thinking about it.
7. To be able to run up a set of stairs without breathing heavily.
8. To ride on roller coasters.
9. To get back to spinning (I actually really love spinning!).
10. To complete another triathlon.
11. To cut-up my Lane Bryant credit card.
12. To be able to shop anywhere I want.
13. To be smaller than my husband.
14. To not have my kids be the ones with "the fat mom."
15. To not think about food 24/7.
16. To not worry about going somewhere and wondering what the seating will be like (parties, the movies, etc.)
17. To not sweat all the time.
18. To not have swollen ankles at the end of most days.
19. To inspire others that they can do this as well.
20. To feel like I am more than my weight and not feel like I have to "prove" myself in other ways so people look past the weight.
21. To finally win this war I've fought for so long.
22. To wear shorts again in the summer.
23. To wear clothes without an X in the size.
24. To wear clothes without a W in the size.
25. To wear clothes with a size that doesn't start with a 2.
26. To not be embarrassed to see old friends again.
27. To never skip another social event because I'm embarrassed about how much weight I've gained.
28. To like looking at pictures of myself again.
29. To not hide from the camera as much as possible.
30. To not "untag" pics of myself on Facebook because I'm embarrassed by how bad I look and I don't want old friends seeing them!
31. To help my parents quit worrying about my weight.
32. To keep myself healthy, since I don't have any comorbidities and certainly don't want any!
33. To turn heads when I walk in a room with my dazzling smile instead of my big butt.
34. To lose inches and inches!
35. To pick healthy foods and feel full on them instead of opting for unhealthy things just because I crave that full feeling.
36. To know how it feels to eat breakfast and not think about food again for a few hours.
37. To set a good example for my kids.
38. To make sure my daughter does not grow up with body issues.
39. To dance at my daughter's wedding.
40. To dance at my son's wedding.
41. To contribute to this amazing online community of bandsters.
42. To help someone along the bandster journey when they are struggling, because I really like helping others.
43. To be able to cross my legs.
44. To be able to sit indian-style on the floor. (Is there a more PC term these days?!?!?!)
45. To be able to do my favorite hobby, photography, without breaking a sweat after the first shot.
46. To not have to worry about the weight limit on any activity, whether I want to skydive, bungy jump, or scuba dive.
47. To overcome the emotional part of my eating.
48. To rewire my brain about food and eating.
49. To become an inspiration to others who are scared to get banded.
50. To live.

I will come up with 50 more before surgery.

One other thing I have to add. You'll notice that nowhere on my list is anything about feeling beautiful or sexy in front of my husband. I hate when people get all sappy and lovey-dovey about their spouses, but I have to say, he is the most amazing man who has never said one negative word about my weight and who has looked past my weight and finds me beautiful no matter what, even though I've gained probably 100+ lbs since we started dating and 175+ lbs since we met. I am doing this for him as well, for being one of my biggest sources of support and finding me beautiful at any weight.

Pre-op diet side effects

I know from a medical perspective that the pre-op diet is really to shrink your liver. I can already tell it's working - I have never peed (sorry!) so much in my life, and my mid-section is much less bloated.

However, I've also discovered it has a few other unintended (or perhaps they are intended) side effects:

1. It's already rewiring my brain around the way I think about food. I know I have a long way to go. A looooong way. But it has made me rethink meals, food, eating, and all that goes with it.

2. The strictness of a 14-day liquid diet has made me CRAVE anything healthy. I look at fruits and veggies and lean protein and practically drool. Again, it's almost like it's rewiring my brain to be thankful for when I can finally eat those things, let alone any other food.

3. I think it's curing my sugar and chocolate addictions. These shakes (pretty much every brand I've tried so far, and I've tried 5 or 6) are so sweet. And seem to taste best in some form of chocolate. Not sure when I'll want to eat chocolate again!

4. I'm adapting to a low-cal diet now. Hopefully, I can stick with it and get through bandster hell a little easier having been so faithful on the liquid diet.

5. I am so ready for this part to be over, I'm not even nervous about my surgery. This is a HUGE added bonus!

I'm on day 6 and going strong. I figure tomorrow is 50% of the way there! After that, I'm on the down hill slope. Wheeeeeeee....

Sunday, November 15

5 days down (almost)...

OK, this pre-op diet ain't no joke! Ugh. I'm not struggling horribly, but it isn't exactly a walk in the park either.

Yesterday was DD's 2nd birthday party, and I'm proud to say I made it through the entire thing without so much as a bite entering my mouth. It was hard, especially because I ended up not eating for 8+ hours, but I stuck with it. I want to be able to say I stuck to the pre-op diet 100% without cheating. It's just a personal battle I want to win.

I have realized in the five short days I've been doing this that I do eat partially out of emotion, boredom, and habit. I always knew I did, but this confirmed it for me. It's been a very eye-opening experience, and I fully intend to use these two weeks to my advantage after surgery.

9 days to go...and lots of learning left to do!

Friday, November 13

I survived!

I had a lunch today as a part of a committee for a board I sit on. Since I'm the head of the committee, if I had cancelled on lunch, they would have just rescheduled to accommodate me. Sooooo, I faked a unsettled tummy (it was partially true, since I haven't felt that well since starting protein shakes).

It was tough. It was at a great Italian restaurant. I almost ordered a bowl of Italian Wedding Soup and would have just had the broth. But I knew that would be really tempting, and even if I just had the broth, I would have felt I cheated. I had an iced tea instead and enjoyed it.

I kept wishing I was on a less strict pre-op diet. And then I realized - no matter what pre-op diet I was on, I'd want what I couldn't have. So if I was restricted to lean meat and veggies, I would have wanted a sandwich. Murphy's law.

Anyhow, one food event down, one more to go. My daughter's second birthday party is tomorrow. I plan to have a shake right before everyone arrives and be so busy that no one notices if I eat cake or not!

Random ramblings

Starting day three of my 14-day pre-op diet. I struggled a bit yesterday - I was damn hungry late afternoon/early evening. It didn't help that DH fell off the I'll-do-it-with-you-wagon, and when I stopped to get a diet cherry limeade from Sonic, he opted to get a whole meal. And ate it in the car with me. Honestly, I wasn't upset - I HAVE to do this to have my surgery, so it is what it is. But I won't lie - that burger and those fries smelled heavenly, and I think I could actually taste them. This is after TWO days. I really am addicted!

Good news on the melanoma front. I saw a specialist yesterday and she said the type I have (melanoma in situ) is 100% curable as long as they remove all the surrounding tissue. I'm having the remaining tissue removed Monday morning at 7 am. I'll have about a 2" scar. And then we made two other appointments for 1 hour each to remove 6 other moles. That won't happen until January. Is it sad that all I could think about is I could be 30-40 lbs lighter when she sees me in January? HA!

DH did a bunch of research on protein drinks yesterday, and he found one that had good reviews on every site he went to. We found it at GNC. It's called BSN Lean Dessert Protein, and it actually is good. We got the Chocolate Fudge Pudding, and we're ordering a Whipped Vanilla Cream and a Cinnamon Bun as well. I don't intend to use protein drinks beyond the two weeks pre-op and two weeks post-op that I *have* to, but a little variety will be nice.

I'm starting to feel a bit ? panicky? smacked by reality? second-guessing? I'm not sure what it is, but I'm starting to realize my surgery is in 12 days. 12! And my life will (hopefully) never be the same. While this is a good thing, I do need to learn to rewire my brain around how I think about food. Food is such a big part of everything we do as humans. Celebrations, work meetings, family outings, and so on. It's always going to be there, so I have to learn how to deal with that. I actually scheduled an appointment with a counselor who specializes in dealing with bariatric patients for the Monday before my surgery. I hope I like her and can continue to meet with her regularly. Maybe she can be my brain lap-band, because I'm pretty sure my brain needs one!

Thursday, November 12

9.29% done...

...with my pre-op diet that is.

4 shakes down, 35 to go.

Lessons learned already:

1. Bulking up your shake with a bunch of blended ice makes it seem sooo much more filling.
2. The clear Isopure protein drinks are nasty. Like gaggy nasty. I only finished it because I paid $3.79 for it.
3. It would be very easy to confuse baby formula and protein shakes. Just sayin'.
4. Adding something to the shake makes it MUCH more palatable. Decaf instant coffee crystals, sugar-free, fat-free pudding or jello mix (the dry stuff), diet soda, etc.
5. Even if you think you won't survive, you will.

I had my moments yesterday when I wondered what the hell I was doing. I was soooo hungry. And I had a rough day - found out that a mole I had removed two weeks ago is melanoma. What a crappy day to get such terrible news. I couldn't even turn to one of my greatest comforts, food. But what a great lesson as well. I survived yesterday, my first pre-op diet day coupled with some terrible news, without falling off the wagon. It was almost like a lesson from the universe showing me that I CAN do this. And I WILL do this.

Wednesday, November 11

1 down, 38 to go...

Protein shakes that is.

My pre-op diet is two weeks or 14 days. But the 14th day is clear liquids only (no protein shakes), so I figure I get to enjoy 39 lovely protein shakes.

The first one actually wasn't so bad. I had an EAS Myoplex Original 17 oz Mocha Latte with 42 grams of protein. It's a little higher in protein than what I technically need, but I figured it wouldn't hurt to start off with more protein as I get used to this.

I poured it over a HUGE glass of ice and let it sit for about 10 min to get icy cold. And then sipped it with a straw. It was fairly tasty. The worst part was actually the way it left my lips feeling a bit sticky and dry. Nothing a little chapstick couldn't cure.

I won't lie, however - 3 hours later and I am getting a bit hungry. With each hunger pain, though, I picture my liver shrinking. Wanna help me cheer it on? Sing it with me! SHRINK, LIVER, SHRINK!

On other notes, DH has decided to do this liquid diet with me! Which is very sweet. No messy kitchen for two weeks. WOOHOO for the small things, right? Anyhow, I really appreciate him doing it with me, and I won't be upset if he doesn't stick with it. He doesn't quite have the same prize dangling in front of him - a smaller liver and a lap-band. I know I certainly couldn't do it if I didn't have such a prize at the end. Although watch - he'll lose more weight on it than I do, and he's only got about 40 lbs to lose!

Tuesday, November 10


Mmmm, sushi. 'Twas my lunch and most likely my dinner. Of all the foods I hear bandsters talk about as problematic - white bread, chicken, pasta - sushi is the only one that if I can't eat it, I'll really miss. I know I can do it minus the seaweed wrapper or with light rice or a million other ways. However, I love sushi just as it is - with the seaweed wrapper and sticky rice and lots of wasabi and soy sauce.

I hope I'll be able to still enjoy a few pieces here and there post-band, but if not, well, I'm enjoying it a few more times!

Monday, November 9

But I'm doing something about it!

I make no sense. I know this. And I'm okay with it.

I've really never been one to apologize for my weight. In the sense that I've never been embarrassed about eating in front of others, being heavy, etc. Not that I *like* it per se, but I've never really felt the need to explain it to people, apologize for it, or feel bad about it.

But suddenly, now that I AM doing something about it, I feel the need to explain it to people. When I am eating in public, I want to say, "Don't worry - this is the last time I'll be eating (insert food here) for a long, long time. I'm getting banded!" I know, seriously. It makes no sense. Especially in light of the fact that I'm not even telling many people about my surgery. But I feel like I've become hyper-aware of everything I'm putting in my mouth, how big my butt is, how crappy I feel, how much I had lost hope until I decided on the band, and so on.

It's like I've finally, finally accepted that this isn't a battle anymore. It's a war. I'm pulling out the big guns to deal with it. And in pulling out this big guns, I'm finally acknowledging a lot of things that I kept locked up. Perhaps locked up with the big guns.

And letting go of these things that I kept locked up will hopefully take lots of the pounds with them, never to return, as I work towards better health, physically and emotionally.

Friday, November 6

A bad case of last supperitis

Knowing that I have 5 days left to eat real food until at least the end of the year has given me a bit of a case of last supperitis. Don't get me wrong - I very willingly scheduled my surgery smack dab in the middle of the holidays. But there are a few things I want to have this weekend before I start on this journey. This journey that starts with two solid weeks of no solid food - but I'll whine more about that later!

This weekend I plan to have sushi and maybe a little more sushi with a big fat side of mexican. DH doesn't know it yet, but those are the plans. And he'll like it, if he knows what's good for him.

In between the sushi and mexican, I plan to do a little taste-testing of protein shakes, since starting Wednesday, they'll become my best friend. Costco, GNC, and perhaps the Vitamin Shoppe - I'll let you know how it goes!

Mmmm, protein shakes...

Wednesday, November 4

Reactions to dropped bombs

I have intentionally chosen to tell very few people in my life about my surgery. This is my personal journey, one that is painfully embarrassing in many ways. I fully admit I may be ready to tell more people as I lose weight and feel more confident in my choice and/or when the reality of taking the easy way out isn't so fresh. But for the time being, this is something I just don't want to discuss with the entire world. Or even my little circle of friends and family.

Having told two of the chosen few recently has reinforced my decision. While neither reaction was overly negative, neither was either reaction overly positive. I realize that I wanted, craved, expected excitement. And support. I got neither. I got surprise and trepidation. Which, to be fair, is probably how I'd react if a friend dropped a bomb like I just did. However, I also like to think that I'd step outside of myself to realize that the bomb they were dropping wasn't easy for them to drop and at least pretend to be supportive and excited.

I am learning, quickly, to accept that how people react is not about me but about them. Maybe it's about how they want to also take the easy way out, how they feel about themselves, how they wish they had the courage to do what I am doing, how they wish they had the opportunity to changes their lives like I am. It's not about ME. It's not. It's about them.

And since this journey is about ME, I am not going to worry about them.

Tuesday, November 3

How did I get here?

I admit, I am judgemental when it comes to obese people. I will see a really large person and wonder, "How did they let that happen to themself? Why didn't they do something when they hit 50 lbs overweight, 100 lbs overweight, etc.?" And here I am. 200+ lbs overweight. How in the hell did I let this happen to me? Seriously. I am smart, I am educated, I know how to eat healthy, I actually like working out, I like playing sports, I can tell you the calories and fat grams in just about any food.

I just don't know.

But I do know it's embarrassing. I mean, 200+ lbs overweight? 200? That's a HUGE number. It's not like it happened overnight or without my knowledge.

I'm here to tell you, it can happen to anyone.

I've been looking back on my life and thinking about my weight at various times. I'm going to try to piece together a timeline as best I can. Here's the last 25+ years in numbers:

1993 - Senior year of high school - I remember weighing 174 lbs. I wore a size 8 for my senior pictures. I remember feeling huge.

1999 - 2000 - Second year of grad school and my first attempt at Weight Watchers. I started at 232 lbs, was wearing a size 18/20. I lost 39 lbs and got down to 193 lbs and a size 12/14 before going back to beer and fast food.

2001 - Another shot at Weight Watchers; I don't remember exactly where I was, but probably around 250 lbs, size 20. I lost 30 lbs or so before getting frustrated yet again.

2003 - Shot back up and decided to give Atkins a shot. I probably started around 270 lbs, a size 22, and lost down to 215 lbs.

2006-2007 - Had gained a BUNCH of weight since my last serious weight loss attempt. I started Weight Watchers for the umpteenth time, although this time I did Core. I started at 322 lbs and a size 28. I lost 59 lbs, bringing me down to 263 lbs and a size 20. Then I got pregnant! I gained back all 60 lbs and didn't really lose any after my daughter was born.

2009 - Had a few false starts here and there, and every time I lost some, I'd find it plus a few extras. I worked my way up to 350 lbs. Then I got pregnant again! This time I managed to only gain 15 lbs, and I actually lost about 30 lbs after my son was born.

Current - I found all the pounds I lost after my son was born plus about 20 extras, bringing me to my current weight of 374 lbs. I had lost about 12 lbs in the last few weeks. But essentially, I am starting at 374 lbs and in a very tight size 28.

And that's how I got here.

The babbling begins...

I've made the decision to get banded.


It's done.

I'm getting banded.

In 22 days.



Am I sure about this?

Ok, calm down. Yes, I am sure. Eventually I'll start from the beginning, but let me just babble a bit about my consult today.

After getting the kids, DH, and myself out the door by 7:15 am, which is no small feat, we headed out for the drive up to Detroit. Within an hour, we'd found the hospital, the right floor, and even the right suite. Or as DH would call it - the Fatty Clinic. Really, it's kinda the Becoming-a-Non-Fatty Clinic, right?

I was expecting to walk in and see a bunch of Fatties, or band-needing people, like myself. Instead I was met with a wide variety of people, most of whom did not appear to be getting nor have had a band. Turns out the suite has 25 or so other surgeons, so whew! We'd made it to the right spot. Unfortunately, the right spot stunk like hell and was quite grimy. DH asked me several times if there were any other surgeons I could go to. Um, yeah, for twice the cost. I put on my brave face, but I was starting to question what the hell I was thinking.

Fortunately, the exam rooms were MUCH nicer. And less smelly. However, they had one of the SMALLEST chairs I've ever seen. Really? In a room for patients wanting weight loss surgery? She asked me if I was in any pain, and I almost had to answer YES - the chair was squeezing my hips so badly!

Anyhow, after being weighed away from DH's watchful eye, we met with Angela, one of the program coordinators. She reviewed my health history briefly and then Dr. Webber, my surgeon, came in. He reviewed my health history more thoroughly, explained how the surgery is done, and answered my questions. I really didn't have many, since I've been researching the hell out of this the past month.

And we scheduled my surgery for Wednesday, November 25. 22 days. The day before Thanksgiving. I'll actually be released on Thanksgiving. Guess I'll be especially thankful this year!

The pre-op diet starts in 8 days. I am DREADING that part. But I will do it. And do it with minimal complaining. OK, probably with lots of complaining. I already warned DH I am going to be a raving bitch, and he's just going to have to deal with it.

OK, more later!