Ginger F.
Austin, TX, USA
Post Op - BMI: 71.9
Surgery Type: RNY
Member ID: Fagg937460341
Surgeon: John Pilcher

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PREOP INFO : I am a 32-y-o female who had recently topped 350 lbs. I have always battled a weight problem and it has continued to escalate. I recently had my first bout with panniculitis and after a discussion with the ER physician who treated me for this I am ready to take serious measures to loose weight. I am able to diet for a short while but this always results in 20-50 lbs off and that plus back on. I am seriously considering the Adjustable Gastric Banding. I would love email from ppl who have done this or even similiar procedures. I think the diet is the scariest part. It seems so strict as for the liquids and pureed foods at first. Would appreciate hearing from people on how they handled this also.

I just rearranged my postings to show in order of newest first .. oldest last. Seemed like it would make for easier reading.. not to have to scroll all the way to the bottom. Most recent posting will be green !!

Monthly Losts:
My highest preop weight was 397.. so you can add -4 lbs to all the totals below for my overall weight loss.

Pre-Op visit at one month before surgery **393.2
Pre-op (weight 1 week before surgery)******391.2 -2 lbs.
10 days post op ***************************373.2 -18 lbs.
30 days post op ***************************348.8 -44.4 lbs.
37 days post op ***************************341.8 -51.4 lbs.
53 days post op ***************************330.2 -63 lbs.
3 months post op **************************306.2 -87 lbs.
4 months post op ************************** 288 -105.2 lbs.
5 months post op ************************** 273 -120 lbs.
6 months post op ************************** 259 -134 lbs.
7 months post op ************************** 245.5 -147.7 lbs
8 months post op ************************** 233.0 -160.2 lbs
12 months post op ************************* 215 -176 lbs
14 months post op ************************* 209 -182 lbs
15 months post op ************************* 203.2 -190 lbs
18 months post op ************************* 185.2 -208 lbs

TOTAL LOSS SO FAR: -212 lbs from highest weight of 397 lbs.


**** January 13,2004...I went so long without posting and I guess that's not good. So much happens in life when you are able to get out and about I guess I just do not get back to this as often as I'd like. Let me start off by saying I HAVE NO REGRETS.. I'd do it again tomorrow if I had to in order to be where I am today. With that said, I am one of the people who had my rebound before getting to goal. I fluctate between 205 and 220 for the last year. Moved back to Vernon and being near my family causes more stress so I find myself stress eating more often. I have decided I need counseling to deal with that, the stress eating. Surgery didn't fix my head just my gut and I knew that. I am in a wedding in Sept so that gives me incentive to be good I think. I can really cut down on the carbs and I begin loosing but it's just that mental idea of dieting. I just want people to realize that rebound is real and it happens. Try to do what your doctor tells you and develop those good habits in those first 3 or 4 months when it's easy to do. If you think you over eat due to stress or just because you love to do it see someone now even before surgery. Again I am very glad I did this. I am still a much happier healthier person. I just wish I'd done it when I was only 150 lbs overweight so I could have gotten closer to goal before rebounding. I do believe a person nearly 3 years out can use the pouch and lose again. I also believe that I will never weight 400 lbs again. If for no other reason I am so much more aware. 10 lbs more on my body now makes me miserable enough to cut down on carbs. This surgery has taught me so much about weight and weight control that I'd never learned from all those years of dieting. Hope everyone out there is having a great 2004 so far. :)

***** October 15, 2002... Lots to catch upon. I had my panniculectomy on 7/12/2002 with Dr. Ryan Jackson. I really was pleased with him. I think for what he had to work with he did an outstanding job. He had to leave a little more higher up than we would both have liked but it is outstanding. I am so very pleased. I am in size 14 and 16's, Larges and XL in most things. XL only to allow for my chest. I came out of the hospital at 185. That gave me a total lost of 212 lbs. I fluctuate up and down now due to fluid and I gained about 8 or 9 lbs during the wedding but I've buckled down and am pushing protein again. I have no fear that it will come right back off. I want to get down to 150. So that's about 50 lbs I need to lose. I am confident I can get that off thru eating protein and exercising. If I didn't lose another pound I'd be perfectly thrilled. I think the surgery exceeded it's expectations so I have no complaints. I still have more plastic work I am hoping to get the insurance company to pay for. I feel the thighs I will have no problem with. I did get married on 9/28/02. I stood in front of the mirror in my wedding dress and nearly cried at how differently I looked than just one year 6 months ago. It is amazing. This surgery has saved my life and given me a whole new outlook. I feel younger.. Look younger and may even act younger :) ha ha ha ha SO much is going on in our lives right now.. the stress is at it's highest but I am looking into learning new ways of handling all this. One day at a time.. that's all I can ask of myself right. I know I didn't come this far not to get the last off to goal. So keep your fingers crossed for me !! HUGS and good luck to anyone out there just starting off. Hang on your in for a helluva ride !!!

***** June 14, 2002... I was approved for panniculectomy w/abdominal wall reconstruction by my insurance company as I have a lot of excessive panniculus. I also have a lot of inner thigh skin and fat left as well as along side under my arms where the breast extended back (least I considered it breast.. it was really fat but it ended up in the bra.. ha ha ha ). Anyhow.. the doctor that got it approved then decided he could not do it till August.. well with the wedding in September there is no way I could wait that long.. so I changed plastic surgeons. His office girl at the first surgeon was so ugly to me. Anyhow.. I found another surgeon and the ins co approved me to use him, but the first doc didn't ask for permission to do everything the second doc wants to do so we had to resubmit the request and we are now awaiting their answer. I am hoping we hear from them soon. I was all set to be having surgery next week, but that's okay.. it will happen. Only thing is that I am supposed to go to Ohio the first week in July and I was hoping to be two weeks post op.. and that would be pushing it as it would be. Anyhow.. we shall see. Maybe I will get scheduled at the end of next week. I am so ready to be shed of this apron of gut. It is so in my way. I stand in front of the mirror and hold it up trying to figure out what it's going to look like without it. If there is 10 lbs of excess apron as they have estimated that will put me under 200. I can't wait !! ;) I started a food journal.. it's the best thing I've done in a while. Helps me get my protein in .. and watch my carbs. Not that every day is perfect by no means but I have a lot more control with the food journal than without it. I had my first virus since surgery 15 months ago last Sunday and I thought I would die. HA HA HA HA The lower part of the stomach would cramp.. but the pouch was empty so I would just dry heave. I lived though. Since then I've not been keeping my journal as I should have. I did go like over 24 hours with no food and I think my pouch shrunk.. ;) Least I guess it was good and irritated. I can't seem to eat as much at one time as I was.. not that this is a bad thing RIGHT !! I will try to do a better job of posting. At 201 lbs from my highest weight of 397 that is 196 lbs. WOOHOO. I am close to that 200 off mark. Can't wait.. I think I will throw a party !! This has given me so much control over food. I still eat things once in a while I shouldn't.. that's just because I am not perfect.. but food no longer is my main obsession in life. I can only eat a limited amount of sweet things.. and fatty foods. That's okay.. I eat enough to enjoy it.. but not enough to make me huge again. Some of the things that caused me problems at first I can eat now. There are a still a few things that just don't work. For the most part I can eat small amounts of most things. I tend to prefer salad with some type of meat in it.. that's my favorite thing.. and it's not because of dieting.. I just like it. I also start my day off with a protein bar.. low carb. EAS AdvantEDGE are my favorite.. the cookies and cream one.. MMMmmm. Something that I didn't like preop is Olives and now I love them.. especially the seasoned ones. I find that quite odd. I wish I had done this when I only needed to lose 100 lbs. Till next time !!

*****May 8, 2002... Well.. the weight is still coming off.. very slowly but the inches are still coming off and that's what counts. The amount of inches I have lost compared pounds amazes me. I am down to some size 18W's and even a Large in some T-shirts. I truly think I could wear even smaller if it weren't for having to get around all the left over gut I have :) I have seen two plastic surgeons and see a third Friday then I will decide on a surgeon. I have got to get rid of some of the excess me before the wedding in September. I have a large panni and lots of thigh. The first plastic surgeon said I would have to lose another 100 lbs to lose the underlying fat that's in it and I don't have another 100 to lose !! I would like to lose down to 140. So I want to lose another 70 lbs. I will worry more about the actual pounds after I see where the surgery leaves me. I am hoping to have the abdominoplasty w/tummy tuck first and then the thighs. The arms and breast lift may have to wait till after the surgery. I am probably looking at 2 to 3 plastic surgeries. It will be worth it. I find I am having some issues with self esteem when I am nekkid :) ha ha ha ha I love the new me with clothes on just not with clothes off !! It will all work out. I am experiencing some left leg swelling but I think it's from being sedentary at work. The doctor is keeping an eye on that. A couple months ago I took some really strong antibiotics that irritated my pouch and possibly caused an ulcer. I ended having esophageal spasms and unable to swallow. The wls surgeon put me on Prevacid and that helped. I am to continue that for a few months and then try to wean off of it. I will post again when I have approval for my plastic surgery. I still say I'd do it again in a heart beat. It has given me my life back. My blood pressure never gets more than 120 something over 70 something sometimes lower where before surgery on meds it was 130 something over 90 something and my blood sugars stay around 100 something post meals where before surgery I was always elevated over 200 even. I did have some hypoglycemia but if I push protein I don't have that problem. Trying to increase time at the gym.. it really helps keep the plateaus away. My pulse also before surgery was always over 100 now it is usually in the 60's. Email me if you have any questions. I will be sending in a new pic soon.

**** March 5, 2002.. Sorry it's been so long since I posted. Right after that post my grandmother was found to have lung cancer and had to have a lung removed. My Dad then had a heart attack in December.. a light one but a good scare nonetheless and I just have not taken time to post. Been living life really.. not taking time to get online as much. I am 1 year out today !! WOOHOO.. ;) Approximately 180 lbs.. not sure about the above weight.. roommate moved in Dec and took the scales that I'd been weighing on (they were hers) and they were on the money with my surgeon's digital scales. Won't go back to him till April. I am getting married in September.. got the enagement ring for Valentine's day and it is so pretty. I want to lose 40 to 60 more lbs between now and June. Then I will go talk to a plastic surgeon. I have lots of skin on gut and legs, arms and such. I knew I would..that's what God made plastic surgeons for right ?? ha ha ha ha Feeling so great.. no problems with heart, diabetes or sleep apnea. Blood pressure is lower than in years. I would say it's been a big sucess. :)

***November 5, 2001... Okay 8 months today.. down 160.2 lbs.. not so shabby ;) I am still so pleased with this surgery. Yes the weight loss has slowed down but 12.5 lbs last month is nothing to sneeze at. I dare not complain. I may have lost more if I had been able to exercise last week but I went out of town and did not get to go to the gym at all. So I have to get back on track this week.. no doubt about it. Things have been stressful at home lately but a lot of progress has been made. My and my boyfriend have been working through some issues.. we had relationship difficulties to work through.. all has been dealt with and things are good. Minor things that needed to be dealt with. He is so good to me. He has been one of the most supportive people to me in all this. I know he is the one I am suppose to spend the rest of my life with. We are talking a possible wedding next year ;) SO this is a good thing. He had to make some choices where I was concerned and he did and I am glad. I do think this surgery has changed me in a lot of ways and it has directly affected my personal life, but in a good way !! I am also having to battle the Dr. Pepper demon.. I have found that I can tolerate regular Dr. Pepper on ice.. and it is so tempting not to give in to it. BUT I have self control now that I've never had before and it's nice. I allow myself one now and again.. just not 6 a day as before my surgery. Life is great.. I am happy.. and that's what counts right !! My current BMI is 43.. started off at 70 something I believe.

***October 29, 2001 ... Well I think exercise is definitely helping.. I have lost 2.5 more lbs since posting.. so it has to be helping. I am now down to 236.. I don't even remember the last time I weight that.. High School I am sure of that.. so I was 18. Just wish it was located in all the places it was when I was 18 !! Course I realize I've been hard on my old body in the past 17 years !!! My birthday is Thursday.. my personal life is in the process of falling apart at the moment... long story.. but I am still very pleased with my surgery. Whatever happens in my personal life was meant to be and life will go on. I figure when a door closes a window opens, right ?? ;) Bye !!

***October 25, 2001.. Went to doctor yesterday. He explained that the passing out is a known thing in bariatric surgery. Apparently I am not drinking enough fluids.. which I knew.. it is so hard for me to make myself drink like I am suppose to. Anyhow.. apparently I am suffering from volume depletion which causes the veins not to restrict as they should. So when I stood up all the blood ran to my legs and since the veins didn't squeeze it back up quick enough there wasn't enough blood in the old brain to keep me awake :) SO the moral is I have to drink my fluids.. faithfully and I have to add in some salt to my diet. Not a big salt person either. He suggested drinking gatorade for some of my fluid intake to get the needed salt in. He was very pleased. I was down to 240.6 at his office.. so glad my scales match his. Then this morning I was down to 238.5. That is 154.7 so far. Not too shabby !! I told him I want to get down to 140.. he seems to think I will get to 170 or so.. but I am determined to make it to 140. Before surgery I said it didn't matter.. I'd be happy wherever I got.. but now I am determined to be 140. ;) Funny how our mind set changes !! I find myself not taking crap either.. I don't intend to settle ever again for anything. I deserve only the best of everything. Now don't mistake this for selfishness. Not that at all. I think as an obese person I just tended to put others over myself a lot of time... my needs weren't as important. Then I would do something insane to make up for it and go overboard. Now it is more balanced. My needs are up there at the top with everyone elses.. which should make for a more harmonious life !! Don't ya think ?? Glad to know the passing out was not anything bad.. he said hopefully if I do the things he says it won't happen again.. but that if it continues to be a problem there is meds I can take until my nutrition levels out. Okay enough rambling for today !!! Hope you are all having a great day !!

****October 22, 2001... Still having this dang headache.. really think it is from whacking my head so hard on the book case when I passed out. It's weird too .. the scales have not moved in the last week.. but my body seems to be reshaping.. it's sort of like the fat left is redistributing .. maybe it's my imagination.. he he he. My arms are so skinny... it's so weird.. I see them in the mirror and I think "THAT'S not MY hand"....he he he he. The wrist bone actually sticks out. This is so cool !! ;) Can't wait till it's a hip bone :)

***October 19, 2001... Interesting week.. I passed out Wednesday morning. Really kind of scarey considering I have only passed out one other time in my entire life. You know some women pass out at the drop of a hat.. I have never been that way. I hit my head pretty hard when I fell on a book case and have a really sore head. My ribs on the left side are sore and I have a knot on my right hand that hurts. I called my surgeon that morning and he wants to see me next Wednesday to check me and do lab work. He did tell his office staff to inform me that he feels it is just because of the rapid weight loss. I think maybe my blood pressure dropped .. as I am losing weight my blood pressure has been lowering. It was high before. SO I am sure this is just a reaction. I will feel better once he checks me. My mother who has been dieting for some time now also passed out about a month ago and was told the same thing by her dr that it was just from such dieting and losing weight. Otherwise.. I've lost 152 lbs.. and feel great. Have a good day.. Gin

***October 14, 2001.. Morning.. well.. as of yesterday morning I am now weighing 242. That is a weight loss of 150.2 lbs. I was so excited. Went to a local Reniassance Festival yesterday.. had a blast.. bought a new bodice for my ren outfit.. the one I had I have had to take up twice already.. so it just could not be taken up any more and still did not fit right. My boyfriend got me a really nice one.. it is an XL.. woohoo.. course it is let out and can be taken up.. But I didn't want to have to quit wearing it after a few more pounds.. so the girl got me into and recommended me buying at XL ;) It was just the mental thing of getting into it .. he he he. My boyfriend stood there and said "Wow baby.. impressive".. he he he I now have a waist.. so with that bodice on.. I had quite the hour glass figure.. and what boobies I do have left.. were up and out there :) I say what I have left because you do lose fat in your breasts ladies.. be prepared. I figure I will end up still in the cup size I was before I got so big.. but they are definitely loose and saggy.. but that's okay.. that's what God made plastic surgeons for right ?? :) Have a good Sunday.. Bye

****October 7, 2001 Well.. 7 months on the 5th since surgery.. on that day I weighed in at 245.5 which gave me a total of 147.7 which I was pleased with. Saturday morning I got up (10/06) and I was down to 244.. which puts me at 149.2. I was even more thrilled ;) Especially since I went 8 days without losing. There is no rhyme or reason to how the weight comes off and I've resolved to not question it.. ha ha ha I am just enjoying it. I feel so much better.. I just can't stress that enough !!! Life is good overall. Dealing with personal crap. I think the weight coming off has changed me inside as well as outside and I think this is contributing to so many factors in my life !!! Happy Sunday !! Gin

*** October 1, 2001.. Okay.. not one pound lost since 9/21/01..a little over 1 week. So another plateau ??? Looks like it. Trying not to worry about it.. since the last one did finally break. Just hard getting on the scale and it is not moving. I do have to say that it is nice for it not to be moving back up !! ;0) I will increase protein and try to watch carefully not to eat too many carbs and see if I can kick start the weight loss again. I guess things are just slowing down and I can't complain. I have beem so blessed so far. The doctor had told me at 4 months that over the next 6 to 9 months I should lose another 100 lbs..and I've lost another 40 already in 3 months so I guess I am on track. I don't go back to him until January. Hope everyone has a good week !! Bye

*** September 23, 2001.. Just for kicks and grins I recalculated my bmi.. it is now 45 .. BIG difference.. started at 71.9... I am amazed ;)~~~ I have poison ivy.. totally unrelated to weight loss I know but irritating all the same !! ha ha ha Went dancing last night.. danced my rear end off.. I am so sore today but I am sure the exercise was good for me. It was nice being out with friends and feeling like having fun for a change. I have so much energy... it just is amazing to me. Hope everyone is having a good weekend !! Still concerned over current events.. as one of my weight loss support group buddies said.. one thing about it.. we will all survive if there is a food ration !! ;) Bye Gin

**September 21, 2001 ... Morning everyone !! I weighed this morning and I am down to 248.5.. WOOHOO.. I haven't been under 250 in years. ;) That makes for a total loss of 144.7. I am just thrilled. Went to a dinner last night for a friend who was viewing her 1800 Rocky Horror Picture show.. she is in a live cast that meets twice a week and does the whole Rocky thing.. and so we were celebrating with her.. and there were two or three people who did not recognize me. A few I had not seen in a while.. so I wasn't so surprised, but one lady I had seen a couple months ago.. course I've cut my hair off and all. It just made my night for people who know me not to recognize me !! ;) Gives me the encouragement I need to be content with my restrictive eating.. not that I wasn't okay already, but it kind of makes it all worth it :) I feel great !! Going dancing tonight !! Hope everyone is well !! Bye Bye Gin

**September 16, 2001.. Well.. what a horrible week for our country and those who are working so hard to help the victims of the terrorist acts this week. Sending up many thoughts for all who lost loved ones in this tragedy and for our government to do the right thing. Makes my battle with weight seem so minute comparatively. On that note I have now lost 140 lbs. I am so happy for that !! I have learned to take this weight loss one day at a time. If I lose a pound today.. I am thrilled and if I don't.. I am still thrilled. Things have gone so well. MY Mom fussed at me this week for not being dilligent with my vitamins.. so YES Mother.. I am taking them every day !!! ;) It is so hard for me.. as I have never been very disciplined with pills, but she is right.. it is so important. I did find chewable calcium at WalMart.. they are similar to Viactiv (??) but are a different brand. They are like little chocolate candies but only like 3 grams of sugar. If I've already posted this I apologize.. but they are really good. So that is a big goal for me now to be sure and take my vitamins :) I got a big kick last night while chatting online with some old friends..we recently had a party and one of the ladies just last night realized who I was.. she did not recognize me at the party.. nor did her husband ;) That tickled the ever living crap out of me ;) he he he he I wondered why she acted like she did not know me ;) now I know !! :) Thanks Jill .. you made my day !! (not that she will ever read this... he he he, but you never know) !!!! My boyfriend has really been commenting lately on the changes in things.. this surgery changes so many aspects of your life !! It is amazing how much better I feel on a daily basis.. and how much brighter life seems these days. I can't wait to be able to go out and run with my 11 year old ;) Hopefully this next week will be better for us all than the last !! Bye Gin

**September 9, 2001.. Weighed this morning and the scales are down 138 lbs. I could not be more pleased. Once the plateau broke.. it broke. Now I do realize I may hit another one this month.. but at least I know they do eventually break !! It is so strange weighing this amount again. I got so used to the scales being up over 300.. that I don't know how to act putting it on 250.. ;) Trust me I am getting used to it really fast. I also see my personality changing some.. I know I always said that I will be the same no matter what I weigh.. but I can see little things that are different. People even tell me that I seem more confident. YES I think it is ashame that I based how I felt on how I looked and trust me it was not self consciously done. I've always tried to live by the value that I had just as much self worth as the next skinny person. BUT.. I have to admit I feel much better now not being the fattest person at work.. or at the grocery store .. or at the doctors office. I don't feel like the whole world is staring at me .. or that little kids are pointing and telling their Mommies that "Here comes the FAT lady". Yeah it may sound silly to say those things.. but I think every person on this list who was obese or at least hugely obese can relate to what I am saying. NO I am not worth any more as I am losing weight.. maybe I just feel better physically and it makes me see my worth more. Maybe it's just me.. ha ha ha but it is how I am feeling right now !!! Working on my website.. and working on getting my good preop pics scanned.. yeah I know.. been working on them a while . Have a good Sunday. Gin

**September 2, 2001.. WOOHOOO I think this plateau is over ;) Anyhow I've lost four pounds since my last post.. so at least the scale moved again !! That puts me at -133 lbs which makes 13 lbs for the past month so far.. much better than what it was. I still have three more days before I hit the six months mark.. So maybe I will lose a couple more ! I am sitting at 260 even. Gee.. I haven't said that in 12 years !! It feels so good. Went to a big bash this weekend.. and it was caveman style dance.. made me a cute little cave girl outfit.. it was so cute. It was so nice having people tell me how great I looked.. some of these people I'd not seen in a year or two !! So that was nice.. really made me feel good. I got to dance and have fun. Only thing is it was BBW (big beautiful women) bash and there were so many people there I wanted to run and tell them to have this surgery, but as I've stated before it's not for everyone. Anyone who asked I was more than glad to give my 2 cents worth on it !! ;) Plateaus still suck in my opinion but at least I know they do end !! BMI started at 71.2.. now is at 48. WOOHOO .. what a difference. Have a great Labor Day !! BYE !

**August 30, 2001 GEEEEZE I hate this plateau. Okay so all those times that I told other people to hang in there.. that it won't last.. well.. they shoulda told me to go JUMP... ha ha ha ha I am trying so hard not to get discouraged.. "And this too shall pass". Right ?? I know this is true.. but then that little voice in the back of my head says "What if this is all you are gonna lose?". Even though I know that's not true.. the little voice keeps telling me that !! I also realize I am at that six month window almost and it's gonna slow way down. Doesn't mean because I know this I have to like it right ??? ;) Anyhow.. just venting !! Otherwise feel great !! Bye

**August 27, 2001... This surgery has it's odd moments.. ;) Since I am nearly six months out.. I have found that I can tolerate a little sugar or a little fat.. but I made the mistake last night of eating sweet and sour chicken.. which combines both.. sweet and fat.. well.. I dumped. My stomach still hurts. I guess in a way it's good to know that I still dump. I now have once again learned my limit on things. I am still so glad I had this surgery. I am on a little plateau but I will get through ;) I know it's a good thing ;) BYE

**August 22, 2001... I just wanted to post an update to let everyone know how I was doing. I have learned that keeping the carbs down does make the weight loss work better.. not that I didn't know that already !! I refuse to not ever eat anything thats a carb.. I coulda done that before.. if I could have stuck to it .. YA KNOW WHAT I MEAN ?? Diets are what I failed so miserably at LOL Anyhow.. I am doing well I think.. I've lost a total of 129 lbs in less than 6 months.. that's nothing to sneeze at !!! I feel great.. absolutely great. My sugar is still normal. The new job is going great !! Life is good. I did hit a plateau a week or so ago.. but I didn't let it freak me out too bad since I really haven't had a bad one yet. I know that plateau's are important in the grand scheme of things. I can do so many thins now I couldn't before.. and enjoy some of the things I could do .. a lot more than I used to.

**August 3, 2001 ************* I see people post on here all the time at how amazed they are by this surgery... I have to agree !! I have never felt in my life like I have so much control over the food that I put into my body. Now don't misunderstand.. I am not instantly cured of all my food issues. For example.. last week I quit my job.. and it was an extremely stressful and emotional day.. what did I do when I got home... as above.. I ate carbs.. but I am so able to stop and see what I am doing. It is strange to me how sometimes I can eat something it it goes down fine.. and the next time I eat it.. I will begin trying to dump. So it's a trial and error process. I have lost 119 lbs as of yesterday. I would like to hit 120-125 by my 5 month date Sunday. We shall see. Start my new job Monday.. I am so looking forward to that. My coworkers are having Margaritas at a local restuarant to tell me and another coworker who is leaving with me today goodbye.. I am wearing my mini skort I got .. Woohoo :) Later !! Gin

**July 28,2001 Well.. I weighed early this morning and I have now lost 115.5 lbs.. WOOHO. I was thrilled. I am finally under 280... I haven't weighed this weight since I had my kiddo 12 years ago. I am so glad I had this surgery. I did find this week that I still have the emotional eating thing.. I got upset and quit my job this week.. and what was the first thing I did when I got home.. ate the most carb loaded things I could find.. about every 30 minutes for about 2 hours.. NOW granted.. the amount I ate was considerably less than I could have ever before and when I look back on it.. I realize it's not very much at all.. the matter of the fact is that my first instinct was to eat.. so this gives me a new goal to work on !!!! Dealing with my emotions in another manner than stuffing my face. I did however manage to aviod high fat or high sugar foods.. just carbs !! Lesson learned !! Note made and life goes on !! Gin

**July 20, 2001.... I did manage to make myself throw up once this week. That was the first time in a long time. I ate some home made chicken salad and saltines. Guess I just didn't chew well enough. I was in a hurry and I guess I tried to eat to fast. CHEW>> CHEW>>>CHEW>>>CHEW>>>CHEW>>>CHEW>>CHEW that's the key !! Gonna try to get my preop pics scanned this weekend and get my friend to take 4 month post op pics with his dig camera so you can see the difference. It's amazing already !!

**July 19, 2001.... I weighed this morning.. and I have now lost 111.4 lbs. I am so thrilled with this surgery. I have absolutely no regrets at this point. Can't see that I ever will. Just a few things that have changed in my clothing, etc stuff... I went from a 50 DD to a 44 DD, size 14(snug fitting) panties to a size 12, size 5X/6X or around a 34/36 to a 3x/4x or 26/28 and my feet have even lost.. I can now get foot in sandles again .. WOOHOO. Life is full of so many little victories and I am loving each one ;) Later !! Gin

**July 14,01... Went to the surgeon Wednesday and he was very pleased with my progress.. all my lab is a-okay. His scales and my scales at home are on the money.. I had lost 105.2 lbs. I have also shown a weight loss of 4 more pounds end of this week. It's funny but when the ketosis is really bad.. I know that in a day or two the scales will show a weight loss.. even if it's just a pound or two. Guess that makes the bad breath tolerable. I will also say that having a support group helps.. I am in two local groups and it is so much help to hear people discuss what's going on with them.. pass along tips .. and just plan be there for one another and preop people. If there isn't one in your area consider starting one.. it's an awesome way to meet wonderful people you can totally relate to !! Bye.

**07-10-01 Just wanted to post an update.. I've lost 105 lbs... I am 4 months and 5 days post op.. I feel wonderful. Even survived Sea World San Antonio a few weeks ago.. got to ride the rides and was able to walk around the park for 10 hours.. course we sat and watched shows.. there is NO WAY I would have been able to do that post op. I am starting to get loose skin on my legs and arms.. hoping some of it absorbs. I know I have a long long way to go.. but I feel like a whole new person.. Heck I've lost nearly a whole person. I love my new body.. no matter how saggy it may be right now.. I can do so much I've not been able to do in years. I look at preop pictures and can't believe that I was so fat my arms would not even lay down by my side. Eating is about the same.. still don't tolerate breads well.. sourdough works best.. or others toasted crunchy. Buns are okay eaten with a burger so it stays broke down.. just can't eat much of a burgerh though ;) I seem to throw away lots of food, but as my cousin told me last week.. it's more of a waste to force yourself to eat it all... :) I have no regrets.. would do it again tomorrow if I had to !! I go to my surgeon tomorrow for my check up.. four months .. can't wait to weigh on his scales. Till next time !!!

**06-14-01 Well I am a little over 3 months post op.. At the three month mark I'd lost 87 lbs.. I am very pleased so far. I don't go back to the surgeon until July and I am looking forward to weighing on his scales. I feel wonderful. All my lab values have returned to normal. My fasting blood sugar last month was 87.. preop it was as high as 250 fasting. My primary care doc was thrilled... my liver functions are now normal. My cholesterol are lower than his he said :) I still don't tolerate bread and biscuits.. or fried foods... but most things I can eat. I have managed not to make myself throw up at all in the last month or so.. this is good. I really am starting to enjoy the new me. I even felt my hip bone the other day for the first time in several years ;) Life is full of small victories these days .. and I am enjoying each and every one. I even sat in a booth at IHOP tonight.. WOOHOO ;)

**04-29-01 Weighed friday at work.. I've lost 63 pounds at least according the scales I weighed on. I know there are probably some variations from the ones I weigh on at the surgeon. It doesn't make that much difference to me.. at least I know it's coming off and that's what counts. I went to the clothing store yesterday..went in after a girdle (just wanted something to help with this hanging gut that I have that I know is going to stay a while).. couldn't stand the thought of pulling it even over my thighs... so I trashed that idea.. why do that to myself.. AS IF ;) anyhow.. so I ended up getting an outfit. Which I swore I wasn't going to buy any clothes yet.. but they were having a buy one get the next item at 50 % off. Well.. I was able to buy a size 28 pants.. I was in a 32 or 34 before surgery.. so that's not bad. OH yeah I know... I have a long way to go.. but I was excited and it was a small victory !!! Or rather for me it was a big victory. I haven't wore a 28 in almost 2 years now. Anyhow.. I also went somewhere yesterday here in town held at one the parks.. we walked around for nearly 2 hours.. and I never got short of breath once.. Another huge victory ;) I have thrown up once.. cooked breakfast food.. didn't think about how I was fixing it.. used bacon grease to cook the gravy and eggs.. I think it was just too high in fat. I was SOOOO sick. Then the other night I ordered something fried without even thinking.. steak fingers.. with fries and gravy.. what was I even thinking.. I also got some soup with it.. the soup I tolerated fine.. a few bites of the other and I was in sever pain and sick to my stomach. Fortunately I was able to fight off the throwing up.. but I sure paid the price in pain for eating what I did. I am learning.. slowly but surely. Fried is just not an option.. too much fat I guess. DUH ! So I learn slow right :) Well... that's all for now. Hope everyone is having a great weekend. Will be posting more pics soon I hope !!

**04-16-01 Went to the doctor last week (my pcp) and was able to weigh on his scales.. That's the first time since I've been going to him in two years that I could weigh on his scales. Life is so full of small victories these days :) that is like 7 more poungs. Can't belive this is working... I mean I can but ...well you know what I mean. I am very pleased so far !! ;) Recalculated my bmi today.. it is now 62...started at 71.9. Looking better already !! ;)

**4-10-01 Well.. I learned a valuable lesson this weekend. I tried to grab a few bites to eat quickly while spending some time at friends out in the country. They had grilled and such. I grabbed like two bites of meat and a few bites of pasta.. I guess being in a hurry I did not chew good. I just knew I was gonna be so sick. It hurt for hours.. I could not eat all evening after that. I finally was able to eat a few crackers the next morning. It was even uncomfortable to drink fluids that afternoon and night. I will be more careful that's for sure. I am ocassionaly nauseated now.. is it possible there can be a delay in dumping from hidden sugars. I had no trouble the first four weeks. Now I am sick feeling..sweaty and hot after eating sometimes. I didn't know if there could be some sort of delay in that happening or not. Otherwise.. I feel great.. look great. Able to wear clothes I haven't worn in years !! ;) Still think I did the right thing !!

**04-04-01 Went to the doctor today... I have lost a total of 44.4 pounds. WooHoo. I was so excited. I am so glad that's it working. The doctor did take my G-tube out and I am so glad of that. One more lovely place that gets to heal on my tummy, but much better than the actual tube being in there !!! ;) I am so glad I did this !! I feel so much better. I am not retaining all of the fluid I was before. The doctor did discuss with me some eating strategies as in choosing meat over other things and crunchy vegetables. He said I can add salad. Told me to stay away from rice and pasta. He wants me to be sure and relearn eating habits for the long run success of the surgery !!!

**3/28/01 Well.. I've been at my parent's house since Saturday. All is well. A little story that excited me.. as we have no full length mirrors at home and I have not been going to work all month... I had really not seen a full length profile since my surgery. Well... at one of our stops during the 6 hour trip up here I got to see nearly to my knees.. I was so shocked !! The shirt I was wearing prior to my surgery would not have cleared below my tummy....which I hated, but now it come over it. I was so excited. Then I got to my Mom's and she said she could see the weight loss from having seen me at Christmas. Again.. excited !! I have no clue how much I've lost since I can't weigh at home. I will find out April 4 and will pass it on ;)

**3-16-01 ******18 lbs ********* at ten days post op. Woohoo. At least I know it's working. I went to the doctor yesterday and that's what the scales showed. I was so excited. Shocked but excited. This g-tube had to be left in .. doctor said they have to be in 2-3 weeks to heal enough to seal off. Anyhow it's really painful and irritating. I've also pulled a muscle in my back trying to sleep on my side in the bed. Guess my body just was not quite ready for that yet. Ouch.. it really hurts. The pain meds for my surgery don't even stop it. Been putting heat and cold on it. Hopefully it will recover soon. It makes walking uncomfortable, but going to try to walk again tomorrow. I think I may have overdone it a bit Thursday. Anyhow... Glad to know this is working !! Bye :)

**3/14/01 Well.. I am still sore.. but it's getting better. I still can't sleep comfortably in the bed really. I can prop up on the couch and I seem to sleep much better that way. The PEG tube they left in place is really irritated. My skin doesn't take to the plastic apparently. Just the same with plastic tape. It is literally eating holes in my skin where it is attached. I go tomorrow for staple removal so will beg him to take it out. I am eating fine and bowels seem to be moving fine so I see no need for it at this point. I can't wait to weigh Thursday. I think I am doing pretty good as far as what I eat. Totally amazed and how little I am eating. I am not having the 2-4 weeks with no hunger though. I think that has something to do with my diabetes which is staying under control on no Glucophage. Well... Will post after I go to the doc tomorrow. bye :)

**3/11/01.. POST OP !!! Yippee !! Surgery was Monday the 5th. Got home Friday. Had a slight complication of pneumonia from being vent dependent. My surgery took a little longer due to adhesions and an enlarged liver so I was under longer than usual. This caused the vent dependency. I have the severe obstructive sleep apnea so I was at high risk. Don't let all that scare ya. It was rough since I had to stay on the ventillator overnight Monday. No fun at all.. I was miserable. My hands were binded down.. that was part of the worse part. Finally they took the tube out Tuesday and I spent one more night in the ICU. Once to a regular room things began picking up. It was weird.. I was not even hungry. I had a hunger pain Thursday night at like 2:00 a.m. Glad to be home fixing my own food. I did screw up big time Friday night when I got home and I ate too many Wheat Thins with my egg salad.. Didn't think about them swelling up and oh boy was that a mistake. OUCH.. I was in such pain. Took forever for it to empty out so that I was not under such pressure and pain. I am now very very careful. I try not to eat till my tummy says it is hungry..hard to learn this signal, but I am doing pretty good. I drink a lot in between and eat sugar free popsicles to help get my fluids in. I bought sugar free jello and haven't touched it yet.. will eventually.. another way to get my calorie free liquids in !! Can't wait to weight next week. Concentrating on getting healed now.. Will concentrate more on protein intake and such next week. Glad to be on the other side !!! Thanks to everyone who sent well wishes about my surgery !! I appreciated every one of them !! Bye.

**02-27-01 All went well with my preadmission stuff. Also a good thing is that I didn't have to pay up front. I was so relieved. So since I had put money back now I can pay more bills :) I am counting down the days getting stuff ready. Trying to think of all the things I may need while there !! Should only be there 4 days.

**02-23-01 *****UPDATE******8 Yipee.. they called me today.. my surgery has been moved to March 5, 2001. I am so excited. I go Monday for me preop stuff at the hospital and to my preop physical at the doctor. WOW a week.. it will go by so fast. Had to go Monday a week ago and weigh.. I'd gained 23 pounds :( YUK YUK YUK.. now at 393. OH well.. soon it will all be peeling off .. can't wait !!!

**02-09-01 ****UPDATE***** I have a tentative date now of March 8, 2001. YIPEE !! I am so excited. Can't wait. I really did not expect it to be this early. I figured they were looking more at the end of March so I am happy !! My sugar is doing better. Still needs to be a little lower. Hopefully that will all work out by time of surgery. Don't want there to be any reason for them not to do the surgery !! For all those waiting.. Keep the faith. It will be worth it in the long run.

**UPDATE** 01-28-01 MY surgeon's office called week before last. The surgeon wanted me to get cardiac clearance since it had been a year, which I totally understand. Went to see my cardiologist that Friday which was amazing that he could get me in so quick. Welllll.. I got excellent news. Seems the pressure on my pulmonary artery has normalized. This I contribute to the not walking to the bus anymore. I think that is what exacerbated the pulmonary hypertension. Anyhow he credited the C-pap to helping, but I'd only been on the C-pap a few weeks. Didn't burst his bubble as he was so excited. He said I had 100% go on the surgery and that once the weight comes off I should have a normal heart as I have no noted permanent damage. This is great news. I was so worried about that. Have been having trouble with my diabetes, but I am working on getting that under control. Had to go the ER and get IV fluids because I was dehydrated from it. I am keeping tighter reins on it. Hopefully will get a call this week with a date !! :O)

**UPDATE...01-06-01.. Happy New Year... Well.. I now have my C-Pap at home. It's a loaner from the sleep doctor I saw. TRC will take their time getting me mine I am sure.. I know they are awfully busy and I am thankful they have helped me with this part of my weight loss journey. Now I wait for the report from the sleep specialist to go to my surgeon so I can get a date. Hopefully I will be hearing from them sometime next week. OH wouldn't that be wonderful. I just want to get it over with and get started on the other side of this surgery. I am excited now that I can see an end to the tunnel I've been in for the past year !! :)

**UPDATE 12-03-00 I saw the sleep specialist this past Thursday... brought home a portable unit that I slept on all weekend to do some testing. Will go back on Dec. 12 to get fit for a unit. I called my surgeon.. apparently the girl I'd been working with has quit.. so things are pretty disrupted there. I may have to wait till Feb to have my surgery but at least there is an end in site.. or should I say beginning :) Will know more after Monday.. she did say she'd leave a message for the surgeons. We shall see. Keep those fingers crossed a little bit longer !!! I do know that the pulmonary hypertension is taking it's toll.. I can't walk very far now without nearly killing over.. and my joints from my hips down ache from the weigh. I feel I've gained since my original apt. but then again I carry so much fluid it's not even funny. I have now been diagnosed with type II diabetes and and high blood pressure for which I am being medicated.. I can see how if this pattern continued for another few years I'd kill myself with this weight. I guess one would say that in that case I should be able to go on a diet and lose it knowing it was killing me.. if it were only that easy for me.. I'd not be this big. I think we can all relate to that !! For others waiting.. hang in there.. I know it will be worth all my troubles the past 10 months once I am slim and healthy.

**09-01-00 Rehab called.. they need me to sign an extension. Apparently one of the people working on my case was off for 10 emergency days. Anyhow..they want to send me to the regional office for a visit with the physician there and to see what all I qualify for. Apparently if he agrees with the sleep study then they will send me to have it ! YES ! ;) Who knows maybe
they will decide I qualify for other assistance too. Not greedy just excited !! ;) I can't wait to get this over with !!

**07-04-00 Happy 4th of July :) Well..after having my doctor's appeal the insurance co. decision to not pay for the sleep study and them keeping it for six weeks.. they finally came back with a No again. I have an appointment with Texas Rehab Commission 7/10 to see if they will help me get the sleep study. The girl says she thinks I will have no problems qualifying. Got my fingers crossed. Would love to have my surgery in August !!

03-12-2000 Just an update... my surgery was approved on February 17, 2000 but they won't pay for a sleep study. The surgeon wants the sleep study before he does surgery. Sounds like a catch situation. Now I have to pay out of pocket if he won't do the surgery without the sleep study. It's several thousand dollars. So I can't even schedule a surgery date right now !! OH well.. things will work out eventually !!

**01-05-2000 Gee just putting that 2000 feels weird. Well.. this past month was quite informing. I had an echocardiogram before going home for Christmas because I had been having severe leg swelling and shortness of breath. Seems I have been diagnosed with Pulmonary Hypertension. Kinda scarey !! I go see a cardiologist on the 19th. Good news though I get to see the surgeon a little earlier than planned as they had to do some rescheduling so I get to go on the 18th. I just hope the cardiologist doesn't say I can't have surgery. Anybody else out there dealing with Pulmonary Hypertension.. I'd like some nput. Not sure what to expect.. !! Happy New Year !! Also after doing much research online and talking to lots of ppl who have had surgery.. I feel that RNY seems to be the most stable and long term surgery compared to the Adjustable Gastric Band. This is probably what I will discuss with the surgeon. Don't want to have something that will just need to be undone later or changed to something else !!

**UPDATE !!! 10-15-99 I now have an appointment with surgeon in San Antonio. It's not until January 27,2000 but it's a start. I am excited. But now I get to sit and think about it for 3 months ;) Also it turns out that the surgeon in San Antonio is already in my ppo so I don't have to worry about getting out of area referral or anything. That was a relief. It is Dr. John Pilcher.


This is my preop picture the night before surgery, somehow I had lost 3 #s

This is in Sept 02 at my wedding.

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    Surgeon Info:
    Surgeon: John Pilcher
    Haven't met him yet. Just got an appointment on 10/15/99. Can't get in to see him until January 27,2000. The lady making the appointment was very nice. 01-05-2000 The office called Monday and changed my date to 01-18-2000 which I am glad of !! A little sooner !! 03-12-2000 Sorry didn't update.. I had my appointment in January. Dr. Pilcher is excellent. Just as I had heard, he is very caring, honest and explains everything very well. I will say the most shocking part was when he showed me the actual size my pouch will be when it's over !! But I feel that he is careful to make sure you fully understand. The office staff seemed very nice !! 07-04-00 Dr. Pilcher and his staff have been wonderful during all this ins mess. He has sent letters. Toni called them weekly till they decided something about the sleep study. I have been very impressed with them all so far. 12-03-00 Well.. a little disappointed at this point since he has had major staff overturn and is way behind on paper work, but still feel quite confident with his skill as a surgeon and physician. 01-06-01 Things are a little better with the office staff.. guess they are adjusting and learning the ropes. I still feel Dr. Pilcher is who I want to use !! 02-27-01.. Went for preop stuff yesterday.. still impressed with Dr. Pilcher. Things were much better with the office the last few weeks. I would recommend him any day. Although now he has an incredibly long waiting list !!! 03-16-01...I was so pleased with him during the whole surgical process. The hospital staff raved and ranted over how impressed they are with him there. I am glad that I was in the hands of a skilled doctor such as Dr. Pilcher. My family was very pleased with the way he explained things and informed them of the surgical events. I do highly recommend him.
    Insurer Info:
    Private Health Care Systems, MD plan
    Have not spoken with insurance company yet. Wantto get information on surgery first. Handbook says they cover weight loss if morbidly obese :)
    091799 Called today and spoke with health insurance. She said that insurance will cover if morbidly obese and considered medically necessary!! YEAH!! She gave me the number to send in a predetermination once I find a surgeon. She also advised me to send in my letters of credible coverage since I am new on this plan so that they won't put it off on pre-existing term. The lady was very considerate and nice. She did ask me what my BMI was ..glad I had calculated it here !
    101599 Called and made appointment with surgeon.. nice surprise..he's on my ppo even though he's an hour and a half away ;) Couldn't get in until January 27,2000.
    2-17-00 They approved my surgery within 24 hours of receiving the letter from my surgeon. The predetermination nurse even called me at work to make sure I knew after calling me at home to get some information a day prior. Only bad thing is our insurance is changing the first of March to a different group. I hope they honor prior approvals or I start all over !!
    01-06-01 Well.. the change last year didn't affect much they decided to go with the same management company as we are an ASO group (self funded). The only thing is they do not pay for sleep apnea related problems. Did find out this past month that the approval stands good even though it's been nearly a year. I did upgrade to a higher benefit plan which costs me about three times as much but pays much better.. I feel I will save about 700.00 this year by changing plans.