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Surgeon TestimonialJeffrey Friedman M.D. I originally started my journey towards weight loss surgery with a different local surgeon. I didn't get to meet the surgeon, but for my insurance I met monthly with the nutritionist / dietician. The first visit with him had me leaving embarassed and angry... with only a few paper handouts to show for the visit. His assumptions and comments were what I expected from the general public, not a weight loss professional. I decided it was a "standard 1st visit speech" so I went back again the 2nd month. I received another fistful of handouts and instructions to cut out "all those deep fried foods" - even though he never reviewed the carefully documented food log I had in hand (which did not list any fried foods). Again, the 5-10 minutes he spent with me left me feeling humiliated and unsure.
I decided I would rather go through life struggling with my weight on my own than to deal with the frustration and embarassment.
And then a friend suggested I visit Dr. Friedman. WOW. What a difference.
The instant I walked in the office door I was greeted with a pleasant waiting room and an even more pleasant lady at the desk, Betty. Dr. Friedman came to the waiting room to get me and I had a consultation with him before even meeting the nutritionist. He was very friendly and down to earth. I wasn't even sure I wanted to go through with surgery, so Dr. Friedman reviewed all of the potential complications, risks and benefits. He sketched out the surgery on a piece of paper and wrote down the various medications and vitamins he would be requiring of me. When I left HIS office, I felt confident in my new decision to have RNY Gastric Bypass, and confident in my decision to have Dr. Friedman as my surgeon.
Throughout the remaining months of my insurance required visits, every visit was pleasant and reassuring. There was no rushing through and no "handout only" consultations. Every time I met with the nutritionist she explained her expectations, why she had them and how I could meet them. The nurse was WONDERFUL about making sure my anxiety and claustrophobia was addressed and made known to the entire team who would be involved in my surgery.
The morning of my surgery I expected to be frantic... but I was very calm and confident that I was placing my life in the hands of a great surgeon who had genuine concern for me as an individual, a friendly and thorough OR team who would see to my needs (especially the anxiety and claustrophobia, if the need arose) and I had advocates in both my surgeon and his nurse.
I woke up from surgery with mild pain, but mostly wanted something to moisten my mouth. I had very little pain throughout my stay (Tuesday morning - Thursday afternoon) and it was always addressed with reasonable quickness by the nurses on the floor. The nurses and techs were caring and attentive. Even the housekeeping staff seemed like my own personal cheer squad as I took my walks in the middle of the night.
Dr. Friedman visited me each day and checked on how I was feeling. He never made me feel like my questions were dumb or insignifcant.
I am only a week post-op and I feel great! I had my first post op visit and everyone in the office was happy and proud for me. It was like celebrating with friends instead of the usual feeling you get in a doctor's office. There is a 5yr aftercare program, so I feel good knowing I have resources available to me for the "long haul."
I adore Dr. Friedman and his staff.... and I feel like they are sincerely interested in playing a part in my success so that I can really LIVE life
- Animal Rescue - I foster horses that are seized by the county
- Cats - 4 of them inside - Diva , Leroy, Boots and Lil
- Dogs - I have a 110lb yellow Lab named Rio. He means more than this line lets me write.
- Horses - 2 horses - 29yr old Skye and 2yr old Buddy
- Gardening - LOVE my garden! Even at my highest weight I was out there in the Florida sun
Gym Time! on August 31, 2011 9:15 am
These last couple of days have been really busy for me! Sunday I started back to work and moved most of the 17 people on my team to the totally opposite end / side of our huge building. Then I went to my parent's house to visit because my cousin and his wife were in town. I went to bed late, got up early and went for a mile walk with my cousing Monday morning. Then we loaded up in my parent's van and took them downtown . The van is converted for my mom's wheelchair, so I ended up sitting on a bench in the cargo area of the van - had to climb in and out everytime we stopped, no backrest ... I got really tired. We walked around our Veteran's park and a pier down at the bay then went to eat. I had my mom order some broiled flounder / boiled shrimp so I took a piece of her fish, 2 shrimp and a bit of baked potato for my meal (the restaurant was totally ok with me doing this - kudos to Hall's Seafood).
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After we got home and chatted for a bit it was time for me to go to work. Monday I moved MY desk to the other end of the building. Now that was a chore! I think I walked 15 round trips from one end of the floor to the other. I did get one of my guys to move my boxes around for me though.
Yesterday after taking my nephew to school I went to buy chicken feed. The place I buy it carries it out for y ou, but then I had to get it to my shed. I went in and napped (had woke up at 630 after going to bed at 1) then went to face the feed bags again. I lifted one end and it was ok. I put it on my shoulder and stood at the truck for a minute and was ok. I managed to carry the 50lb bag to the shed with no pain, pulling or discomfort. I waited until later in the afternoon to carry the 2nd one and it was fine as well. My counselor wasn't really thrilled with me. I have a tendency to be stubborn and not ask for help... he asked me to please promise to ask for help instead of carrying 50lb bags across the yard on my 2 week post-op anniversary.
This morning I met a friend at the vet so I could cuddle her Great Dane puppy (who is 57lbs at 4mths) and then I went to the gym. Dr. Friedman told me at my post-op visit I could do gym workouts and to just test things out and not do something if it caused discomfort or pain. So I did a light workout circuit today! Wow I was so tired, so quickly! I warmed up with a mile on the bike, then did some almost vertical pushups and plank pulls, some dumbbell work (usually use 15lbs, used 5) then some light leg work (usually do 60lbs did 15), and then some more arms (10lbs vs 40). I was tired beyond the "exercising tired" so I finished up with 10 minutes on the treadmill at a little bit quicker pace than usuall (2.5 vs 2.2). I had planned to walk a mile, but I felt a little sore so I stopped.
It amazed me how tired and weak I was throughout the workout, but I'll just keep it light for another week or 2 to kind of let my body catch up to my motivation lol.
Tonight should be a "normal" night at work, but I am still palnning to just work 6hours or so. I may try a full 8 hours Thursday night.
Unjury Explosion! on August 28, 2011 4:42 pm
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Dear OH Friends,
This is a public service announcement in regards to Unjury Chicken Soup protein product. Overheating your soup runs not only the risk of a grainy, lumpy meal, but also the risk of explosion.
Today has been a shake / soup / g. yogurt only day to try to recover from the last 2 days soreness. This evening I brought Unjury Chicken Soup to work for my lunch. I heated the water for a minute like I do at home, not taking into account that the work microwave is one of those tiny microwaves that are evidently powered by nuclear reactors. I went ahead and added the water to the protein, closed the shaker cap and began to shake shake shake as I walked out of the break room.
Chicken soup protein spewed over my hand and onto the floor. Nice. So I would shake, vent the cup, shake , vent...... and now I am staring at a shaker cup of foamy, grainy, clumpy chicken soup. I'm really glad I brought some greek yogurt for backup.
I am also exhausted this evening. I woke up early and went to church. I love going to church, I love my church - but it all makes me very tired mentally and emotionally. Being in big crowds is overwhelming to me and my church is really big. When I got home I took care of my chickens and rabbits (took that chore back from my dad) and by the time I had lunch it was time to get ready for work.
Work has been crazy trying to catch up from being gone 18 days (I took off for the liquid diet). Over 800 emails (deleted about 140 of them just sorting by subject lol) , my team has had horrible performance without someone watching over their shoulder so I have to make notes on who gets counseling documentation, our division has gotten so big they split it in 2 parts while I was out so I have a new boss (my boss before my current boss, so not so new), and I have to move my team to the other side of this 50,000sqft building. Oh, and pack my hoarder looking desk and move it as well (already enlisted someone to carry my boxes for me).
I can't decide if I am glad I came back a week early or not! HAHA
Still Paying? on August 27, 2011 5:14 pm
Would I still be sore from yesterday's banana incident? I don't see why, I ate a "meal" yesterday evening and was fine? But all day today everything, even the watery stewed then pureed squash , hurt. I had protein shakes ok, jello tonight hurt.
I guess tomorrow I will do a shake and broth only day and see if that helps. Otherwise, I guess Monday I will call Dr. Friedman's office...
In other news, I have been exhausted today. I guess from limited calories / protein yesterday and today? I'm getting most of the vitamins in but I am still struggling with calcium. I start back to work tomorrow, fortunately I can work whatever I have the energy to work so I am not locked in to an 8hr shift. I still feel I am doing the right thing to go back, but I am very glad I have the freedom to limit my hours.
Another med I am struggling with is my antidepressant. It is a huge pill and nasty in even crystal light. I have to get it going again though .... I know the dark places my moods can go.
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If I'm Gonna Mess Up I Do It BIG on August 26, 2011 3:48 pm
Wow... so I have had a "twofer" day today! Not fun!
I had a protein shake this morning and had about 16oz of water before heading out to my counseling appointment. When I came home I decided to try banana, but just a tiny little piece because I wanted my actual meal to be protein. I tossed some canned chicken and greek yogurt in the mini-chopper and set 'er whirling. I mushed the little bit of banana in my mouth and swallowed. The little rubber stopper on the bottom of the mini chopper came off and the chopper started escaping across the counter, so I popped the last little eraser sized piece of banana in my mouth and lunged for the chopper. I was so distracted I didn't chew, just swallowed.
OH. MY. WORD. PAIN. I doubled over the sink and managed to "burp" up the little piece of banana. I put the chicken mix in the fridge and crashed in the recliner, still sore. I made a protein shake and nursed my bottle water for a while.
Then a friend came to visit and by the time she left it was time to try to eat again. I had a little bit of turkey pureed and then stewed some yellow squash and pureed that. Nice dinner and still had "room" in my plan for dessert. So I had some SF chocolate pudding that my mom had made. I didn't think anything of the vanilla wafers in it, because they were so soggy I could moosh them around and make them apple saucy. Didn't think of COOKIES having SUGAR.
Found out I dump. Fortunately I didn't eat much so it didn't last long. I felt like I needed a Xanax to get past that first little bit though.
If you're gonna learn lessons, learn them well!!!
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Post-Op Visit #1 on August 25, 2011 10:31 am
YAY! Dr. Friedman was really pleased with my progress and bragged on me. Made my day. His nurse, NUT and office manager were so sweet and happy for me.
He said since I have had no pain and no problems that I can do some light exercise other than just walking. He said to use common sense and stay easy and light for a while - and of course if it hurts stop. I figure I will just walk this week and maybe next week start doing the weight exercises without weight (ie bicep curls with no weights, leg lifts no weights, etc)
I also got to talk to the nutritionist even though I wasn't scheduled. She helped me map out a schedule for my vitamins, etc and answered a few questions for me. I also found out that I shouldn't be taking Centrum Silver because it doesn't have iron, they want me to take regular Centrum chewables, so I need to change those out. She also gave me tips on figuring my protein intake, though she said she isn't really all that concerned about me getting the 60g from food right now. She said use shakes and count the other as extra, and slowly work myself up with the food proteins. She said right now is my time to try out different foods. At my next appointment she'll help me work on getting the full 60+g from food.
I have 2 more weeks of puree' and then 2 weeks of soft foods before going to a "restricted regular diet". I see Dr. Friedman and the NUT again Sept 29.
I lost 17 lbs on the liquid diet and 3.8 since surgery. I'l weigh again Sept 29. :)
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