6.27.05 ~ Hi Everyone!! I am a ??? year old divorced woman who has had a stream of traumatic events happen in my life over the past 6 years. As a result I turned to food for comfort and the scale has been going up and up and up. I have finally made the decision to do something fabulous for myself by having the gastric bypass surgery.
I attended the seminar at Norwalk Hospital on 6-7-05. I signed in, picked up the info packet and then was asked to jump on the dreaded scale to determine by BMI. Although I didn't know who he was at the time, Dr. Ehrlich assured me that my weight was just a number. He said if I preferred I could determine the number on my computer. Well, I told him, I didn't think my computer would tolerate me sitting on it to determine my weight!! He laughed and said "I see we have a joker here". Dr. Ehrlich instantly made me feel at ease and I was thrilled when I found out he was the surgeon. His presentation was professional, informative and fun. When I got home I looked up his profile on the CT Dept. Of Public Health website. He had a perfect record with no disciplinary actions against him which was great news. I had my initial consultation two days later. Danielle, his PA, is a delight and Dr. Ehrlich is down-to-earth and very easy to talk to. I am so excited to be starting the journey towards a healthier, stronger and active me!!
On 6-17-05 I had my nuclear stress test which was a breeze. I have set up all my pre-op testing appointments and am crossing my fingers that they all turn out ok. Wish me luck!! More later . . .
6.29.05 ~ Had my initial consultation with the nutritionist at Stamford Hospital, Tamara Swett. She's fabulous. As of tomorrow, I start on a 1500 calorie diet for the month of July, then 1200 for the first two weeks in August and 1000 for the last two weeks in August. Hopefully my surgery will be scheduled for the beginning of September!! Tamara is such a wacky, fun person and we hit it off the minute we met. I am really looking forward to working with her towards my goal weight. I also had a consult with Dr. Peter Gardner, the gastroenterologist. Another super nice doctor. My upper endoscopy is scheduled for 7/26.
Everything is really coming together now and I'm starting to get excited. More later . . .
7.11.05 ~ Today was my psych evaluation and I passed with flying colors!! Mary Ziller said I'm a perfect candidate for WLS and I'm thrilled.
The cardiologist that did my nuclear stress test on 6/16 found a spot on one of my arteries. He doesn't think it is anything, just from body humidus, but wants to do an angiogram just in case. Yuk!! I tried to sweet talk him out of it but it didn't work. So I go for the test this Thursday. Wish me luck . . .
7.14.05 ~ Well it's been a very long day today. Got to Stamford Hospital at 8:30, checked in and had bloodwork done. Then on to the angiogram. The nurses prepped me, Dr. LaBarre stopped by to say hello and it was on to the operating room. They sedated me and the test took about 30 minutes. They plugged the hole in my groin and then I was on bedrest until they released me at 4:00. The test itself wasn't too bad and it went by quickly. But lying in bed for several hours....yuk. Dozed most of the time. The nurses were wonderful and Dr. LaBarre is a very kind, compassionate cardiologist. I'm on bedrest for the rest of today and then have to be very careful over the next few days so the plug doesn't come out. But at least that's another pre-op test that's over. And the results were perfect...no clogged arteries and lungs are working perfectly!! Now only one more test to go...the endoscopy on 7/26. More later . . .
7.26.05 ~ Had my final pre-op test today...the upper endoscopy. All went well and everything turned out normal. Yippee!! Thankfully all of my tests have turned out normal and I'm healthy (other than some minor comorbities). This clears me for surgery!! Tomorrow I meet with my surgeon and will hopefully be given a surgery date. Keeping fingers crossed...
7.27.05 ~ Met with my surgeon today, he looked through all my pre-op tests and cleared me for surgery!! All my paperwork was faxed over to my insurance company and I should have an answer within 24-48 hours. Dr. Ehrlich said the office will contact me on Friday and that my surgery will be scheduled for the last week in August or first week in September. Wow, with all those endless pre-op tests I had to go through I never thought I would make it this far!! What a relief!! Hopefully I'll have a good update to make on Friday. More later . . .
7.29.05 ~ Haven't heard anything yet from my insurance company. Called them and was told they didn't have anything in the computer yet so the decision hasn't been made. I really hate this waiting.
Then I received a generic letter from Healthnet with the upcoming exclusions they will be implementing on policy renewal. And of course, they are excluding bariatric surgery!! :o( I think my policy renews in Sept/Oct so hopefully my paperwork has been submitted in time. Grrrrr!!
7.30.05 ~ I'M AN ANGEL!! Received an email today from a lovely man who needed an angel and wanted to be an angel. So I'm doubly blessed...I not only became an angel but I now have my own angel!! Ken P. is a happily married pastor from Bloomfield, CT and he not only preaches, but he teaches too. I know he will be a great help to me throughout my journey. And I look forward to helping him through his journey since I will have already experienced each step. Thank you Donya for bringing us together!!
8.2.05 ~ Got sick of waiting so I called my insurance company again and I'M APPROVED!! Called the surgeons office, they said they just received the fax and scheduled me for surgery on September 12th. YIPPEE....finally!! Now the waiting starts!! 41 days to go!!
8.31.05 ~ Had my final pre-op appointment with my surgeon. I was given a 20 question quiz to make sure I'm thoroughly versed in everything about the surgery. Passed with flying colors. Dr. Erhlich's PA had me sign all the surgery forms then Dr. Erhlich came in and talked to me. I'm very optimistic that everything is going to go smoothly and getting very excited!! I have to be at the hospital at 6:30am on September 12th and my surgery is at 7:30am. Will be having the pre-op blood work done this Friday and also have to have a chest xray. Then I'm good to go!! More later . . .
9.7.05 ~ Went to the Tully Center today for my chest xray. Now ALL my tests are finally done!!
Today is my moms 83rd birthday!! Wanted to take her out for a nice meal tonight but her girlfriends arranged a birthay lunch for her instead (without checking with me). She's such a tiny little thing and won't be able to eat two meals in one day. Guess I'll have to take her to dinner another night.
9.9.05 ~ Received a call from Nurse Barbara of Norwalk Hospital yesterday. She went through my medical history, meds I'm on, etc. in preparation for Monday. I'm to be at the hospital at 6:30am and surgery will begin at 7:30am.
I am going through the full range of emotions right now. I'm so excited but also very scared. The passing of Angel Angie on 9/5 was so sad and it really hit home how dangerous this operation can be if your doctor doesn't pay careful attention to your aftercare. Thank God my surgeon is going to send me for an upper GI the day after surgery to check for leaks. I have every confidence in him as a competent surgeon. Look at the endless list of pre-op tests I had to go through to make sure I am healthy enough to make it through surgery!! It was tedious but well worth the time and effort.
I want to thank all my OH family for the support, kind words and laughter they've given me over the past several months. All the members of the SEPTEMBER 12TH CLUB are going to make it through this surgery just fine and we'll all be sharing our experiences by the end of next week!!
Today is my last day of real food. My friend Diane and I went to Applebees tonight for my "last supper". I had a caesar salad, a huge steak with potatos, garlic toast and a frozen margharita. Don't know why I ordered the margharita because I rarely drink.
I ended up not drinking it anyway because it had too much tequila in it. The waitress laughed at me when I told her that...she said they've never received a complaint that there's too much alcohol in their drinks!!
9.10.05 ~ I want to say thank you again to all of my OH family for filling my surgery page with so much love and good wishes!! I don't know what I would have done without each and every one of you to help me get this far!! :o)
Today was the first day of my clear liquid diet. My mom made me a pot of homemade chicken soup (she gets the chicken & veggies). So I've been "eating" the broth, SF jello, SF popsicles, light CranGrape juice. I really thought I would feel like I was starving but I'm not hungry at all. I'll get through tomorrow no problem but in the afternoon I have to do the dreaded bowel prep. Guess I'll be hanging around near the bathroom after that!!
I will have my mom and 2 friends there to support me tomorrow. My friend Diane will post on the main message board when all is said and done. Please pray for me and I will post later this week!! Stay tuned . . .