Thursday, January 7

I got that babbling feeling!

First, a warm welcome to all my new followers! I puffy heart followers! And exclamation points! And comments! So, thanks for taking the time to comment and read. You make me feel all warm and fuzzy, which is good considering the wintery weather headed my way.

Let's see, I am in the mood to babble, so here goes, in no particular order:

-I scheduled my second fill for 1/22, only two weeks from tomorrow. I realize it's a bit aggressive, but there were no appointments for the following week, and I was a bit hesitant to wait four weeks. So, if I need it, I'll go. If not, I'll just cancel. But at least I'm on the books...

-I'm so happy to be on mushies today. I can't remember how I got through four weeks of liquids (pre- and post-op) cuz I was ready to eat my own arm off last night. Goodness, two days, and I was a monster!

-Speaking of, I am eating my first semi-solid food post-fill right now, some soft butterkase (a very soft German cheese.) I am taking small bites and taking it slowly, but so far, no feelings of restriction. Boohoo. But all hope is not lost - it still might happen when I start regular food tomorrow.

-I STILL hate not drinking while eating. Will it ever get better?

-I'd about kill for a Diet Pepsi right now. Will that ever get better?

-The above two questions are really rhetorical, as I know it will, but if you are a veteran and would like to address either of them, I'll happily (ok, maybe grumpily) listen.

-Finally, I went to a support group last night. It was um, interesting, to say the least. Because I had my surgery about an hour away, I wanted to find a local support group. This one is community-based run through a local hospital. At least, that's what their website said. I called and registered and all was good.

So, I show up, decaf skinny latte in hand (my dinner, as I was on liquids), and the room is packed! I was expecting 10-12 people, and there were probably 40 of them! The first 45 min was a physical therapist showing us exercises on an exercise ball. On the one hand, some cool moves. On the other hand, some very basic stuff, and while I know not everyong knows how to exercise, I kind of resent the implication that because I am fat, I do not know how to exercise. Simply not true. I've completed two triathlons and played four varsity sports. I think I get the gist.

But here's where it gets interesting. They were videotaping the group so they could put a clip on their website and show people what the group is like. So they decide that everyone has to go around and introduce themselves and say one thing that the surgery has done for them. About six people in, I realize everyone is saying, "I had my surgery on xx date" - and not specifying what kind. I turn to the girl next to me and ask, "Did you all have gastric bypass?" Long story short, everyone there BUT me had the same surgeon and gastric bypass!

WTF? So, they get to me, I introduce myself and say where I had surgery, when, and that I was banded. The leader says, "I figured you weren't one of ours as you are drinking a coffee." Apparently, bypassers are never allowed to have coffee again. She proceeded to get really snotty about the coffee! OMG. First of all, the website says "Bariatric Surgery Support Group" - it says nothing about what kind. Second of all, just tell me at the door that I can't bring it in. I would have understood, but instead, she calls me out repeatedly in front of the entire group. How is that support? She said about 5 times that I was welcome to come back, but without coffee. OK, I get the message. And you really think I want to come back after that?

THEN after I announced I was banded, the shitstorm of questions starts: Why banding? What can you eat? How much did it cost? Why wasn't it done locally? Aren't the fills a pain? And so on. I felt like I was on trial.

But here's the good news. My weight loss was on par, and sometimes even higher, than the bypassers who were six weeks out. So there! Chew on that with your superior attitudes. OK, I am being mean. Some were supportive and some were generally curious, but some were just down right judgemental. Is that necessary? Aren't we all in the same boat? We just opted for different paddles. But lots of our restrictions are the same, lots of our challenges are the same, and lots of our successes will be the same.

Suffice it to say, I will be finding a new support group. My surgeon does offer a support group, so I might just suck it up and go there - I just wish I could coincide it with a fill. But the group is on Saturdays, and they don't do fills on Saturdays. Whine, whine, whine...


  1. I think your biggest support will be here in the blogosphere. I too have gone to support groups (WW, TOPS,Overeaters Anonymous,etc) and now say never ever ever again. I think it gives people a superior feeling to make other feels small. You are doing so well and I am following close behind and am looking to you to lead me through all the crap. BTW, I was so addicted to diet pepsi (two-three cans a day). My sister-in-law made such a big deal about the aspartame so I gave it up 6 months ago. I now have about 1 can a month and it isn't the same. I think I was more looking into the caffeine fix it gave me. So you can get over it, I know.

  2. Sorry about your experience last night. I stopped going to my surgeons support group because it always seemed to be people who weren't successful, and I did not even want to know why or be around that negative energy, for fear of picking any of it up.

    I do sometimes take sips of water (just enough to augment my spit). And, I was off diet pepsi for over a year, and I'm so back on it, it's scary. I think when you're first banded, it's a bad idea to drink carbonation for a couple of reasons. But, after you are a veteran bandster, you might see what you're body can do. Plus, I'm really into EVIDENCE BASED practice, and I'd really like to see any studies or whatever on why this "rule" is even in place. Sorry if I'm being a bad influence, but you seem like the kind of woman who would want to consider all sides of the debate.


  3. Actually bypass people can have coffee it all depends on the surgeon. She probably didn't want any of her people questioning what they tell them. I feel so sorry for anyone who doesn't tow the line in their group... I would never make it with someone like that since my favorite thing to do is question my medical team ;) I personally want to be able to seperate opinion from fact especially since all surgeons are different (and so are the patients!!)

    Did you say anything to them about how they made you feel? I am starting to get brave enough to tell rude people what I think of what they said - in a nice polite way of course. However, it seems like most of the time I think of what to say after I leave.

    I hope you find a group that you like!

  4. Sorry you had that experience Amy. The group facilitator should have been far more professional. Find another group and don't forget, you have us too! I laughed about your comment with the exercise ball. People do sometimes think that we don't know how to exercise. I love proving them wrong and then showing them a few things...can you say 3 pointer. Thanks for your comment today too. I really appreciate it.

  5. What a disappointing support group experience. I have my first one next Monday. It is at the hospital where I had my surgery so I am hoping there are at least some other band patients but I am not expecting to see that many. I agree with some of your other commenters - I think most of my support will come from blogs and LBT.

    Band-Babe, My bariatric nutritionist told me that the reason Band patients, and bypass patients alike, needed to avoid everything carbonated is that the carbonation stretches out your pouch. I think that it would be true if I drank a can of diet soda in 10 minutes, but if you had a few sips I just don't see how it would be so quick to stretch out.

  6. When I went to our support group...just once might I add, it was for WLS of any kind, but about 50 people were Gastric and me and one other girl were lapband. That was it. And I don't know why none of those people cant drink coffee, but my coworker had gastric bypass and lives on coffee, as do some other GB bloggers. maybe it was just the doc. I also hate that just bc we are/were fat that people think we dont know anything about food and nutrition. HA! My nutritionist asked me if I had ever seen a food pyramid!

    As for drinking pop...ha! You know my answer.

    As for drinking with meals...that wasnt too hard for me to give up. Now though I actually take a sip or two. I don't really believe that drinking helps move food down bc I find if I am full with food and take a hurts and sometimes makes me PB.

  7. What I hate on your behalf is the tantamount to public humilliation, and that's inexcusable, whether it's bariatric or tiddlywinks. My anger would know no bounds, and I'd be putting in a serious complaint at the highest level...
    ... And be tempted to attend every week thereafter with large steaming cups of cofee, loudly slurped...

  8. Jeez, sounds like the support group from hell! Are you sure you weren't in an episode of Seinfeld or something (dating myself here)?

    Congratulations on being back to solids, and especially on the 40 pounds! I am a few weeks behind you, still doing the liquid thang. Grrrrr.

    I am also missing soda, although I'm a diet Coke girl. I'm sure it'll pass at some point, right? I just remind myself that it could be so much worse - what if I could never drink wine again?!

  9. So much for the 'support group' theory. I think sometimes these idiots miss the whole point. Seriously, what was with that. And not EVER being able to drink coffee again as a GB patient? Well, that would really suck. We def got the better end of the deal with the band - fills or not. Raise your middle finger to the person in charge (politely of course!) and leave them to it. You're better off without them if that's what they call support.

    Nice that you're back on solids. Must be a relief. ENJOY!!! Before you know it, those foods will get more and more and better quality. xxx

  10. oh man sorry you had to experience that!

    I think we should all go there with LARGE coffee drinks lol who's in?

    I understand about soda I used to love Diet Coke, but I have tried sprite in mixed drinks and it just makes my stomach feel funny. So I have no desire to drink diet coke. And I do drink wine/martini if I am out with food but at home I don't bring my water to the table when I am eating.

  11. i am so sorry to hear about your and everyone else's support group experience. mine is sooooooooooooo wonderful (as you all hear every monday night). i wish you all could come to mine. it is about 10 regulars. about half of them are more than a year out and are SKINNY "normal" looking people. the others are in their first year and very successful. they are all so wonderful and loving. they treat me with so much love as the baby bandster of the group.

    it is about 35 minutes from my house. in fact it is a couple minutes from my office. so i leave work at 5. get the princess from school, take her home to meet the babysitter and turn right back around and go to group --- so it is basically 1 1/2 hours to get back where i started from! lol. my vote is to at least make the hour drive once to see if it is something that will help you.

    there is a woman in my group who was addicted to soda. she now has one "flat" soda a day as a treat. she puts it out the night before and lets it go flat so she gets the taste without the bubbles. she used to drink more than 6 sodas a day.

    hang in there...