Starting Weight: 218
Met with Dr. Veninga for initial consult. He is very personable. I'm really hoping for quick approval from my insurance company so that I can get my surgery done in April.
Hadn't heard anything regarding my insurance approval. On the advise of my weight loss buddies I called Beth, the insurance lady at Dr. Veninga's office. Beth informed me that my packet was ready and would go out today. She said that I should expect to hear back from her in about a week. I hate the waiting!!!
I got a call from Linda at United Healthcare a few minutes ago. She said, "You're having surgery on the 25th, right?" I said, "I didn't know that!" She asked if I'd talked to my doctor and I told her that I hadn't talked with him since my last appointment. She then went on to ask me about my current meds and told me not to take any over the counter meds starting 10 days prior to the surgery. I asked if this meant that I was approved and she said YES! I'm so excited by this news! My packet just went out on Monday, so this was a really fast approval. United Healthcare is the BEST!
I found out later today that the date is not firm but when I called my doctors office they said I should get a date in the last week of April so its not far off! YAY!
I got a call from Barbara at Dr. Veninga's office today to confirm my surgery date for April 25th at 12pm. I need to arrive at 11am. I also need to call a week prior to surgery to set up my pre-op appointment (972-981-8073). On the day prior to the surgery I can only have clear liquids and I need to drink some stuff that will apparently "clear out" my system. Sounds lovely, doesn't it? I have to start drinking it at 3pm and drink as much as I can. I'm putting all this stuff in here to remind me of the things I need to do!
7 days and counting until my surgery day! I'm getting excited/nervous/antsy. I called today to get my pre-op appointment. That is now set for next Tuesday the 24th at 1pm. I sign in at the registration and they will take me back. My doctor called in a prescription for something called CoLyte which I start taking the day before surgery. Also, some folks have started a local support group. They just had their first meeting but I had a terrible migraine and therefore missed it. There is a get together scheduled for this Friday night, though, so my husband and I will attend that. I've created a yahoo group page for the club. I'm testing it now.
4 days and counting! Our local support group met for dinner at a fun old BBQ place called Cele. It was great to finally put faces the people I've only known via email. The food was great and the company was excellent. Today my parents arrive to celebrate my brother Kelly's birthday. He lives in the house behind me. Tomorrow I head back to the Dallas area with my folks as I am having my surgery nearby in Plano. My pre-op has been scheduled for Tuesday at 1pm. I'm almost there!
Tomorrow is the big day! I went for my pre-op appointment today and got preregistered so that I won't have to deal with registration tomorrow. They took 3 vials of blood, my blood pressure, lotsa paperwork, an EKG and a chest x-ray. I got home about 3:30pm and started drinking my Colyte. I gotta tell ya that its pretty nasty. I called the Dr's office to ask whether I should be taking my diabetes meds tonight and in the morning. Barbara told me to cut my dosage down tonight and not to take the meds in the morning but to call them if my blood sugar is high. I don't see that being a problem with my having been on clear liquids all day. This will probably be my last update until after surgery. Bye for now!
Well, I finally made it to the other side. I had my surgery on 4/25/01. Things did not go exactly as planned. On 4/26 it was determined that something was wrong, I was losing blood and my hemoglobin count had dropped to about half what is normal. They ended up taking me back in for surgery. Luckily they found the leak and fixed me back up. Unfortunately, this increased my time to recovery and I ended up being in the hospital for 8 days. I'm now recovering at my mothers house in Dallas. Its going a bit slowly but I lost about 7 units of blood, so its probably to be expected. Dr. Veninga left the g-tube in and I really hate dealing with it. I'm slowly learning what I can and can't eat. I've had a couple of dumping sessions from not waiting half an hour after liquids before eating. I'm both intrigued and frustrated by what I hear from my fellow post-ops. It seems as though we have all been given different dietary instructions to follow. Oh, the other fun thing is that while I was in the hospital, EATING NOTHING, but being pumped with fluids and drugs, they actually put about 19lbs on me. I went into the hospital at 215 and came out at 234. Today I weighed in at 219, so I'm slowly shedding the extra weight, but I was sure bummed to find out I was heavier than when I started!
I saw the doctor last Thursday, not quite a week after my previous appointment. In that short time my body decided to shed all the water weight as well as the weight I should have lost. I weighed in at 201! Yay!!! I was so geeked. Since then the weight has been coming off fairly well and I actually broke 200. I weighed 195 this morning. This is the first time I've been under 200 in years. I also got Dr. Veninga to take out the dreadful g-tube. I told him that if he didn't take it out, I was going to take the #@#$% thing out myself! Just for the record, I'm 38 years old and 4'11". I'm now home in Austin and my husband is ecstatic to have me back home.
My weight loss seems to have slowed down considerably. I think I'm losing 1-2lbs a week. I guess it doesn't matter as long as I continue to lose weight. They are almost done building my swimming pool and I can't wait for it to be finished so I can begin using it to exercise. I'm at about 5 weeks post-op and I eat about 2 ounces at each meal. My husband worries that I'm eating too much. I don't think I am but I'm not completely sure. I feel full when I eat 2 ounces but not stuffed or sick to my stomach.
I've been on a plateau since I last updated my profile. Yesterday I finally broke my plateau and dropped a single pound. I'm happy to be down a pound and even happier to be under 190. I volunteered to be an Angel for Merry Shaw, a member of my local support group and I hope she'll have me!
Merry has agreed to let me be her Angel. I'm really excited about it!
I saw my doctor yesterday and he was really pleased with me and my weight loss. I guess I was afraid he'd tell me that I was eating too much or that I hadn't lost enough weight. I'm eating about 2 ounces at each meal and several of my weight loss buds are only allowed half an ounce at a meal. I lost 11 lbs since I last saw my doctor. He told me that I shouldn't expect to lose more that a pound or a pound and a half a week because I'm so tiny. (big laugh) TINY???? Well, compared to most of his patients I'm small. He also pointed out that I'm down about 30lbs and thats almost a third of the way to my goal. I was geeked when I thought of it that way. Cool, huh?
(sigh) I'm on yet another plateau. I'm beginning to wonder what I'm doing wrong. I had hoped to be losing weight a bit faster than I am. On a happy note though, I stopped at the outlet mall in San Marcos today and tried on some clothes at Elisabeth's. Not only did I fit into the size 20's but they were actually a little bit loose! I think I need to find a way to get more exercise. I haven't been doing much exercise at all because I have trouble with the heat here. I'd been counting on my swimming pool to help out but my pool builder has gone bankrupt and my pool is not yet complete.
My friend Merry made it through her surgery with flying colors and is now on the "other" side. I know she is going to do just wonderfully and I am looking forward to having her join me on this journey.
Yahoo! I finally broke my plateau and dropped some weight. I had a great day yesterday. I went to the mall and tried on clothes all day. I found that I can get into a size 18. Okay...they are a tiny bit snug, but not much, and the 20's are a bit too big. This is the first time I've been in a size that didn't start with a 2 in a long time! This is also the first time I've enjoyed clothes shopping in ages! I didn't end up buying anything but I sure had fun.
Yeehaw!! I weighed in at 182 this morning! My new goal is to be under 180. Not far to go! I now have 65lbs to make my goal weight of 117.
I saw a special the other night on Luther Vandross and his weight history and he said something I thought was very profound. He talked about how other people have addictions, like alcohol and drugs and such but said that food was really the only addiction you had to wear around for the world to see. If you're on drugs or alcohol people don't necessarily know it or talk about it in the same way, "Joe's fallen off his diet" or "Look at what Joe's eating, isn't he supposed to be on a diet?"
This struck me as interesting because just a few weeks ago my husband and I were talking about this very issue. He said that when you're an alcoholic or into drugs you can quit and *choose* not to do those things anymore. When food is your problem, its not like you can just stop eating. Its a life long problem that you have to deal with. Anyhow...just a few thoughts.
I finally broke 180! The weight loss has been slow but it is coming off. My swimming pool is finally complete so I hope to get more exercise. Several members of my WLS support group have now crossed over and its great seeing them each week (seeing less of them).
Holding steady at 179, I hope the scale moves again soon. I got some good news from my PCP yesterday. My latest 3-month blood sugar reading was that of a normal, non-diabetic person! I've been off of diabetic medication for about 2 months now. Yay!
Yay, down a pound! Just 61 more to go. I've started losing my hair the last few weeks. I have a lot of hair so I'm probably the only one who will notice but I hate it anyways. I'm getting exercise daily in my swimming pool now and I love that!
I'm not sure what happened but I suddenly dropped 3 more pounds. Mind you, I'm not complaining! I think swimming every day is helping a lot. I'm still losing my hair but its not really noticeable to anyone but me so far. I'm only 15lbs away from weighing the same as my 17 year old neice and she isn't happy about that at all. Just 7 pounds away from being halfway to my goal weight (117). I think fluid loading has been a real help. For those of you who don't know about fluid loading it means drinking 8 oz. of water as quickly as you can, 15 minutes prior to eating. It takes 15 minutes for the liquid to pass through your stomach, which is why you wait 15 minutes to eat (you don't want to stretch your pouch). After eating you wait 90 minutes before drinking again. If you drink right away you make your stomach contents into a soup and wash away the food. It takes about 90 minutes to fully digest your meals. Waiting the 90 minutes keeps the food in your stomach for the maximum amount of time and promotes satiety (fullness) for a longer period of time. This means you won't be hungry as fast. Some doctors say you can eat 30 minutes later, and you can, but waiting the 90 minutes works best, in my opinion. You can read more about this and other aspects of the gastric bypass at www.oregncenter.com/bluebook.html
No change in weight this week. Too much eating over the weekend at my nephews birthday party. I do have some good news, though. One of my friends at the last support group meeting suggested that I might be into a size 14/16. I didn't think so but I tried on a pair of shorts in a size 16 at the mall and I could zip them up! Okay, they were a bit tight, but I could zip them up and button them. The size 18s are too big now! I can get into size XLs in the regular womens department now.
Another two pounds bites the dust! It seems like whenever I hit a plateau that I can get past it by increasing my calories for one or two days. I'm not sure why that is but perhaps it fools my body into thinking its no longer starving. On average I eat 400-600 calories. When I hit a plateau I increase my calories to around 700-800 for one or two days. That always seems to do it. For those of you who track your food intake, think about using Dietwatch. Dietwatch is a free website that has an excellent java script for entering the foods you eat. There is an extensive database of foods and if the food you eat isn't listed you can define the food. It will also allow you to enter recipes, track your exercise and weight and much more. Give it a try!
Ohmygosh! I just did measurements and found that I have lost a total of nearly 36 inches from my body! WooHoo!! I will try to put all the statistics up soon. Down another pound.
Went to the doctor today for my 3 month appointment. The doctor was very happy with my progress. I'm hitting the percentiles smack on target. As of today I am no longer Morbidly Obese, I'm just overweight! Isn't that cool?
I did it! I finally broke 170! This makes me soooo happy!
I've discovered some things recently that make me nervous...
1. I almost NEVER dump.
2. My pouch easily holds 4 oz. maybe even 6.
3. I almost NEVER dump.
Okay...I know I'm repeating myself but I can eat sugar, chocolate (more sugar), breads, etc...with no ill effects. I know that I shouldn't and I really don't for the most part, but you know how it is, you just have to test your limits. I've never eaten more than a few malt balls as far as the chocolate thing goes. They stayed down just fine. I do put sugar in my hot tea. This hasn't made me hungry or kept me from losing weight. It hasn't even caused my blood sugar to go up. My diabetes is well in check. Some of you may think that I should just shut up and not complain. I guess thats true, but it worries me for my long term ability to make it to goal. It means that I will have to be more diligent in the use of my tool. It means that I will be required to have more self discipline than most. I hope I am up for this challenge. It scares me...
I did have a Chex Milk and Cereal bar for breakfast on Saturday. I bought them as an alternative to my usual malt-o-meal. They have 160 calories and 6g of protein so I thought it would be worth a try. After about 15 minutes I felt kinda sickly. I read the label and it has 13g's of sugar. So...maybe too much sugar will make me dump. I was actually glad to have something...anything, affect me in this way.
Well, I've gone on enough. Till next time...
Can I tell you how excited I am? Today I passed the half century mark! I'm now officially down 52lbs! WooHoo! That means I've lost more than I have remaining to lose.
The only problem I am having is with my hair loss. My hair is coming out in handfuls. I now clean out as much hair from my brush a day as I used to clean out in one week. I can actually see thin patches. It sucks! Good thing the weight is coming off or I'd be really devistated. I may be bald, but at least I'm THIN and bald. *giggle*
In case anyone is curious about what I eat now that I'm nearly 4 months post op, here is a typical days meals:
Breakfast: one egg, hard or scrambled with Pam. I've started adding proscuitto, which has a good ratio of protein to calories and sometimes I add a bit of cheese. On days that I can't stand the thought of eggs, I eat malt-o-meal, which has more protein than cream of wheat, or I eat Yoplait express in the tubes, which I freeze. Some days lately I've had protein bars.
Lunch: Hard boiled egg, if I didn't have one for breakfast or a grilled lean hamburger patty with lettuce, tomatoes and onion or beans & weenies. This is a really low cal lunch. I cut up Ball Park Fat-free weenies into a half can of baked beans, add a little mustard and a packet of equal and heat up. I usually eat 3-4oz for less than 100 calories. Another thing I really like is to spread 2-3oz of fat-free refried beans onto 4-5 (.5oz) of Wow Tostito chips, sprinkle with an oz of cheese and microwave or broil. Yummy!
Dinner: For dinner I generally have 2-3oz of some type of meat like lean sirloin or chicken. Lately I've been on a BBQ chicken kick. I eat it with a very small salad and sometimes a half ear of corn. I know that some of you have trouble with corn, but I seem to be able to eat anything. Some days my husband makes chicken fajitas. I like to buy the big bags of skinless, boneless chicken at Sams Club. Chicken is very versatile and we have several dishes we can make with it. Some days we make chicken curry.
Snack: I've pulled out my old air popcorn popper. I can eat 2-3 cups of popcorn with a little butter salt. It really satisfies that hand to mouth action you sometimes crave. I know some doctors recommend against eating popcorn but I have no problem with it at all.
Well, that gives you an idea of the types of foods I eat. I get about 400-600 calories a day and I don't worry if I go over that once in a while.
Well, its been a week since I last posted and I've only lost a pound. Its not so bad because I'm really happy to be losing weight in any increments! I'm going to Las Vegas next month for a slot tournament and I'm really excited about it. Just knowing that the plane won't be an issue is such a comfort! My husband bought me the most gorgeous dress, black, covered in jet black bugle beads, scalloped hem and banded collar. Its a petite MEDIUM! Its a tiny bit snug across the chest but it zips up easiy. I just love it! I have the most wonderful husband in the world. I also cut my hair as you can see from my updated picture below.
Ok, enough gushing. I hope you are all doing well! Tomorrow is my 4 month anniversary date!
Weight loss has been slow, but I'm still losing! I managed to lose weight over the Labor Day weekend while surrounded by family and food. Not bad, I'm happy.
My weight has stayed the same over the past week or so and to be honest, I'm happy about it. I've had my best friend in from England the past 2 weeks, my youngest brother and his family down and lots of company. To have maintained my weight through all that is a blessing! Its nice to finally have some time to myself. I'm being lazy today and I'm still sitting around in my pajamas. I'm already back to my normal eating habits and I am sure the weight will start coming off again soon. I'm can't wait to be under 160. Just a few pounds to go! I leave for Las Vegas in 9 days! WooHoo! I'm also going to make a trip to Seattle in a couple weeks and plan to stop through Oregon and spend a week with my youngest brother and his family.
Although my hair is still falling out, its also started to re-grow. The area at my temples where I was nearly bald, has new baby growth. I'm soooo excited about that! I've been taking GNCs Hair and Nail vitamins. I'm not sure if they have helped but something is doing the trick.
Yay, down another 2lbs! 1 more to go to be under 160! I leave this coming Wednesday for a trip to Las Vegas for a slot machine tournament. Wish me luck! My next update won't be for a couple weeks. I have a very busy schedule for the next few weeks. After Vegas I will be making a trip to Seattle and then to Portland. I won't be finished traveling until the 6th of October. I will occasionally be checking emails.
On a really cool note, I bought a pair of jeans at Macy's today in a 14 petite, right out of the regular petite section. I also tried on a few sweaters and can comfortably wear Large shirts now and not the XLs I have been wearing. *Awesome*
Okay...I lied, but I couldn't help posting to let you all know I dropped below 160 today. Now if I can just hold onto that until I get back from Vegas. *grin*
Well, I'm back from Las Vegas and somewhat poorer. *laugh* The town was mostly deserted for the first few days. The airport was empty. It was an odd feeling. I'm happy to say that I maintained my weight while away. I ate a lot of really great food but kept the portions down. I leave this Wednesday for Washington state and Oregon.
I'm baaaack! Its so nice to be home again! As you can see, I put on a couple of pounds while I was away. I found it really hard to eat right while doing a lot of traveling. I did keep my portions sizes down but struggled with getting in the right amounts of proteins and such. At any rate I am happy that I only gained a couple of pounds and I feel sure that I will be back on track by the end of the week. I really want to take off another 8-10 lbs before I see my doctor for my 6 month appointment. Wish me luck!
Hi folks! I've been away again. My maternal grandfather passed away and I went to Dallas to be with my mother and then on to Oklahoma for the memorial service. The memorial service went very well and I got a chance to visit with cousins, aunts and uncles whom I hadn't seen in many, many years. My paternal grandfather passed away over Labor Day weekend so I've lost both my grandfathers in a very short time.
I'm really happy to report that I actually managed to lose weight during all this! I have a week home before I have to head back to Dallas for my 6 month follow-up. I want to lost another two pounds so I will have lost an even 20 since my last visit. I'm happy to be well under 160 and I now have less than 40 lbs to make my goal weight of 117lbs.
Can you believe it? I've dropped 3lbs! WooHoo! 35lbs to goal and only 8 lbs heavier than my mother! *grin* My 6 month follow-up is next week in Dallas so I'll be out of town yet again. I'll be updating my measurements very shortly. I'm anxious to see how many inches I've lost now.
Today is my 6 month anniversary. My mother informed me that she has dropped to 143....moving target, huh? *laugh* So now I weigh 10lbs more than her even though I haven't gained weight. She says maybe she'll stay the same weight and wait for me to catch up so we can lose the rest together. *smile*
I updated my measurement chart last night. I've lost nearly 13 inches since I last measured. I had hoped it would be more. I dropped the most in my stomach. This is good because its the area I most need to lose weigh in and I still have a big gut. Some days I think I'll have a big gut forever but I know its just a matter of time.
I met with Dr. Veninga last Thursday for my six month follow-up appt. He said that I have now lost 65% of my excess weight. He was very happy with my progress. Once again I hit the expected weight loss on the nose. While in Dallas, my mother and I got the chance to meet Sherry Wall, another of Dr. Veninga's patients. She is a lovely lady who told us she is 51 but looks much younger!
Dr. Veninga also told me that he is pretty sure I have a hernia. YAY! Can you say "tummy tuck"? *laugh* My weight is holding steady but not dropping much lately. I really need to stay home and concentrate on my eating and exercise. My sister-in-law is coming to town later this week so that could be a challenge.
Hi everyone! Well, I seem to be on a long plateau. I'm beginning to wonder if I'll lose more weight or if I'm stuck here for good. *grin* I feel great, though, and I look pretty good. I have lots of energy and can go all day where I used to get so tired all the time. Life is fun and I'm very happy that I had this surgery, its given me a new lease on life.
My friend Joanie emailed me today and I realised I've been slacking on my journal. To be honest with you all I had put on a few pounds and I really didn't want to admit that my weight had jumped to 156. Oddly enough the extra few pounds dropped off me over the Thanksgiving holiday. I think that I was so busy keeping up with everyone and keeping my kitchen tidy that I just burned off the weight. I think that is really cool. I have so much more energy these days that I can run around all day cleaning and visiting and cooking and still have energy left over. I love that change in my life. I feel better physically than I have in years. Some time this week I'm going to put updated information about what I'm eating at 7 months post-op. My friend L'Don told me that it really helped her that I put that information into my profile back in the early days. Anyways, for now, I'm doing great and I'd be happy if I never lost another pound. I can shop in the normal size section at the store (mostly size 14s) and I feel terrific. I do want to have the tummy tuck, though, as I have lots of extra skin. I haven't given up, mind you, I'm going to keep plugging away at it. Hang in there with me and stay posted! *grin*
I dropped a pound. I hope that means my weight is on the move again. I've taken up jogging a few days ago and have managed to jog 3 days in a row. I know thats no great record but hey, I just started. I made it all the way around the block on my first try which I think is pretty good for someone who has never jogged before. I've been struggling to find a new form of exercise since my pool is now too cold and it finally dawned on me that I like to run around the house so why not try jogging. I hope I can keep it up and that it helps me in my journey.
My weight still isn't moving much but I have been noticing that my clothes seem looser. Tonight I checked some of my measurements and found I was right. I've dropped an inch and a half in my waist and a half inch in my hips so perhaps my body is just catching up with my weight loss. I get nervous that I'm done and even though I'm thrilled with the weight loss I still want to reach my goal. Maybe I'm being too hard on myself, I don't know. I am 7 months post-op now and I know that people do continue to lose through their first year and beyond. I'm following my diet and I'm exercising, I guess I need to just keep doing what I'm doing for a while longer and see if I start to lose again.
Woohoo! Down another pound! Just a couple more pounds and I'll make it to the 140s. I'm contining to work hard at staying with my eating plan and getting exercise. My weight isn't shifting up and down between 153-156 any more. I was stable at 152 for a couple of days before dropping to 151 this morning. I went and did my HGA1C today to test my blood sugars for the past 3 months. The last one came out excellent, I hope this one is as good.
Another pound bites the dust! Just when I was afraid that the party was over, I started losing weight again. Remind me to keep the faith!
Well folks, I'm on a roll! I finally broke 150 and the weight is dropping off this past week or so. I'm not sure what happened but I'm loving it! One thing that might be helping is that I switched from real sugar in my tea to Splenda. I've never been able to tolerate sugar substitutes in the past but I started mixing the Splenda half and half with the real sugar and couldn't tell the difference. Eventually I tried it on its own and it wasn't so bad. Since I drink about 10 cups or more of tea a day and had 2 teaspoons of sugar in each cup, that makes for a significant calorie loss.
I also got back the test results from my recent HGA1C and they were good. My sugar level was a bit higher than the previous one but it was still well within the diabetic association standards. My size 14s are getting lose on me and I'm catching up with my mother on weight, she weighs 145. I think I'll be in a size 12 soon. YAY! My goal was to be 145 for christmas and I think I'm going to make it!
Weight: 145-148 BMI=30
Hi Everyone, I hope you all had a happy holiday! Christmas was great and I really enjoyed having my family around. For some reason, I, who never dump, did just that on Christmas day. Everything I ate seemed to make me dump. I had sausage gravy for breakfast with a buttery biscuit. A poor choice, to be sure, but just half a biscuit and just a little sausage gravy. It was enough to make me dump. I was nauseas, then hot and sweaty, then sleepy. I slept for a good half an hour or so before I finally felt better.
There has been far too much chocolate in the house over the holidays and I've eaten more than I should have. To top it all off I picked up a lousy cold from my nephew and have been sniffly and miserable for the past few days. Man, am I whining, or what??? *laugh*
My BMI is now 30, which means that I'm now Overweight, not VERY Overweight now! My weight has been fluctuating between 145 and 150. It seems like my body really fought me to get under 150 and now its fighting me to get under 145. I know I'll get there eventually! Things will normalize now that my family has all gone home. Its harder to eat right when I have company. The good news is that I keep so busy cleaning up after everyone that I don't put on weight even if I eat badly. I hope you all had a wonderful christmas!
Weight: 145-148 BMI=30
Wow...a brand new year! As you can see, my weight really hasn't changed in the past few weeks. I got rid of all the chocolate in the house and that helped for awhile until I found a new vice. Lately I've had a strange addiction to cereal. Yup, I said cereal. With all the nieces and nephews visiting I had "fun" cereals in the house such as Cap'n Crunch, Monsters Inc. Fruit Loops and Apple Jacks etc. I'm not generally attracted to cereals. My youngest nephew likes to carry a bowl of dry cereal around and munch on it. One day he left a bowl untouched and I grabbed a handful in passing. I was hooked and have been snacking on cereal ever since (dry). The good news is that I was seriously pushing the cereal off on the kids this past week so there isn't much left now and I will NOT be replenishing it! I suppose that I could have been snacking on worse things but there really isn't much in the way of nutritional value for me in cereal.
I took the kids home tonight so hopefully I will begin to normalize tomorrow. Why am I sabotaging myself? Am I afraid to succeed? I am happy to say that my weight is still under 150 but I'm not satisfied yet. I want to reach my goal, I really do! Well...as they say, tomorrow is a new day. Keep me in your thoughts and wish me luck.
Weight: 145-148 BMI=30
I may have to have my sugar demon surgically removed from my back. *grin* My 39th birthday was just 2 days ago on January 9th. My husband bought me the most adorable Mazda Miata! I love it!
To combat my addiction to cereal I found Kashi GoLean which is a cereal that has 9g of protein and is high in fiber. I get a cup of it for 190 calories and I ate it dry for breakfast this morning. Where there is a will, there is a way! *laugh*
I also finally got around to joining my local rec center which is just around the corner from where I live. They have a weight room with all the regular work out stuff, recumbent bike, stair master etc and also a really nice walking/jogging track. I'm trying to get in the habit of jogging a few times a week.
My husband made me a birthday cake which has been calling my name from the kitchen. I am going to go toss it in the trash in a couple of minutes. Why do these temptations keep finding their way into my house? I am NOT the one buying them. Grrr....
I have my 9 month appt. coming up on the 1st of February and I really wanted to be down 12lbs. from my last apt. Currently I'm down about 6lbs. Wish me luck, everyone! Getting this last 30lbs off is going to kill me. *grin*
You'll all be so proud of me, I did throw out my birthday cake yesterday. I just picked it up and marched it out to the garbage. (Real fast before I could change my mind) *laugh* I also went out to the gym and jogged 5 laps and walked 6. Yay for me!
After I'd thrown out my cake the mailman arrived with my order from sugarfreeparadiseofsouthflorida.com. That was sooo awesome. I got some wonderful little sugar/carb free belgian truffles. They have only 18 cals per truffle and are pretty delicious!
My husband took me to see Margaret Cho, the comedian, last night at the local theatre and out to dinner at a Thai restaurant nearby. This was a night out for my birthday since we spent that night with my family. We had a fun night! I over ate a bit but it was healthy food that I was allowed. We did a little walking to walk off the excess. It was a great night out. Can I just say that I adore my husband!
This afternoon I went to the gym with my husband and jogged 5 laps and walked 13! He walked the whole time because he has bad knees that get aggravated by jogging. He said he could see definition in my calves as I was jogging. Way cool! *grin*
I went to see my PCP today so I got an official weight of 146. Although my weight has been under 150 for several weeks I have been weighing at home on my digital scale the whole time. Today I weighed on the regular doctor scale and I was so geeked when the nurse (who didn't know me) put the bar right on the first 100 mark without any hesitation and began to balance the scale. I can't remember EVER having the weight sitting on the scale at 100 before. I was so bowled over that I had to ask my doctor what my actual weight was. I've lost 13lbs since I last saw her but I can't remember when that was but I do know that I saw her after I saw my WLS surgeon last so if her scale is accurate then I will have met my goal to weigh 12lbs less when I next see my surgeon. Today was a good day!
Well...sigh..., my weight isn't moving but I'm being very strict with my eating. I'm recording everything I eat and I'm making a point to exercise. I never take in more than 1000 calories a day and usually its closer to 7-800 calories. Since it takes a good 1700 calories a day to maintain my current weight I should be taking off at least a pound a week. I think I'm just on a plateau. Hopefully it will break soon and I will see a few pounds drop off at one time. Lets hope so! *grin*
Weight: 145 BMI=29
Down another pound! This would put me at 143 by my PCP's scale. I hope that is the accurate one! I'm continuing to exercise a few times a week. I can easily fit into size 12s in the abdomen and the butt, however they are tight just at the waist. This could be due to my hernia...at least I am hoping that is the case. I think it grew when I was sick with my post holiday cold and was doing a lot of coughing and sneezing. My 9 month follow-up is on Feb. 1st. I will be out of town from about the 30th of Jan to the 6th of Feb. My mother and I are taking my grandmother to CA to visit her brother. This will likely be her last time to see him. She has cancer and probably won't live another year. Sad. I've never met my great uncle so I'm looking forward to the pilgrimage. Tomorrow will be my actual 9 month anniversary. I will post my updated measurements then!
Yay! I have been paying such good attention to what I eat that I knew my weight had to break eventually. I was so happy this morning to step on the scale and see a nice loss! I have really increased my water lately and I think that has helped. Although I have always practised and preached fluid loading, I was bad about drinking water. I drink a lot of hot tea, which is a diuretic and not the best way to get in my water. Recently I started making homeade lemonade with fresh squeezed lemons and splenda. Its so refreshing that I've been able to get a lot more water in and I think it has paid off! Yipee!
I've updated my chart to reflect my 9 month measurements. Since my last measurement I have lost 12.25 inches! Not too shabby.
I had a very odd experience yesterday. I took a pretty hot bath in our jet tub late yesterday. As I was getting out and heading for the shower to rinse off, I felt a tiny bit dizzy. Nothing very bad so I didn't think much of it. I got into a bit cooler shower and suddenly felt horribly dizzy and nauseas. I leaned against the back wall of the shower and the next thing I remember is waking up half out of the shower, laying on the floor. My husband heard the crash and came up to check on me, thankfully. He helped me finish rinsing my hair, turned off the water, and helped me to stand. He took me over to the tub and I sat down on the edge. As I sat there I began to feel dizzy again and I guess I closed my eyes. My husband got worried and moved me to the floor, I think I was already passed out at this point because the next thing I remember was waking up and finding I'd spit up some chocolate pudding I'd had earlier. My husband helped clean me up and combed my hair. He got me into my pajamas and into bed. I slept for about an hour. I'm not sure what caused this but I suspect it was the heat of the water. I was not dumping, I hadn't eaten anything that I should have dumped on and it didn't feel like any dumping I've ever had. Anyways, I'm just recording this for own information. I feel fine today other than my shoulder aching and feeling somewhat out of joint, a bruised hip with a tiny cut and a little bit of a headache. I'm going to call the doctor tomorrow and tell her about the incident.
For all of you following my profile, I went to see my PCP today regarding the incident I talked about above. I got a bit of a scare at first. She thought I was anemic and even made me go immediately to the lab for tests which she ordered stat on my iron levels. She thought this because the last tests my surgeon ran indicated that my iron level was low. She said she'd call me in case I needed to head to the hospital for a blood transfusion. Yikes! She did a test of my blood pressure/pulse in a reclining/sitting/stanind positions and they were all different, indicating a problem of some sort.
Anyhow, she called me later to say that my iron level was fine, normal even. She is now waiting for my full CBC tests to come back. She isn't keen on me driving myself to Dallas on Thursday for my 9 month follow up but says to give it a couple days and see how I feel. My mother might end up coming down and getting me tomorrow.
I met with Dr. Veninga on Friday for my 9 month follow-up. He was very pleased with my progress. I have already lost 75% of my excess weight and apparently that means I've lost more than the national average for this surgery. That really made me happy! He also approved me to go ahead and seek out a plastic surgeon for my tummy tuck! WooHoo! He gave me the names of a few plastic surgeons he recommends.
I'm so excited to have my tummy tuck and to get rid of this hernia! I talked to Dr. Veninga about my fainting episode but he wasn't too concerned. He told me to be careful using the hot tub and he felt it was just a drop in my blood pressure due to the heat. So, I'm not going to worry about it.
Yup, you read it right, I put on 2 pounds. I just got back from 2 weeks of traveling in California and Oregon. My mother and I went on a pilgrimage to meet the hispanic side of my family that we'd never met before. We had a good time meeting everyone but they insisted on constantly feeding us! I guess I should be happy I only put on 2 lbs! *laugh* Well, I'm back home now and already getting back into my normal routine. I feel so much better when I eat right! My husband and I went out to the market and got fresh sea bass for dinner. It was sooo yummy! Well, I'm going to call for an appt. with a plastic surgeon tomorrow. I'm both nervous and excited. I can't wait to have a flat tummy though and I want it now so I'll be able to swim when the weather improves! TTFN!
I'm slowly taking off the weight I gained during my recent trip. On Monday I went to see a plastic surgeon, Dr. Holzman of Austin, Tx, about removal of excess skin. Before booking the appt. I checked to make sure he was on my insurance plan. The minute he walked into the room he started telling me that he doesn't "do" insurance claims. I asked why he was listed with my insurer and he told me that he does hand work for major accidents and only in those cases would he bill the insurance companies. He said that his work was too good to fight with the insurance company for the little bit of money they would pay him and he was worth the money. A little bit of an ego there, to say the least. *sigh* Anyhow, he suggested that I should finish losing the last 20-25lbs I want to lose before proceeding with plastic surgery. He said I'd be much happier with the results if I waited. I'm not sure about that, I really want the apron gone prior to the summer. He did tell me that he thinks I'm an excellent candidate for a circumfrential (sp?) abdominoplasty which is like a belt and goes completely around the stomach and back. This would alleviate the fat on my back as well as the panni area. He said thought I would benefit from a breast lift, too, which is true, though I'm less wanting to do that. I still want to try and get some of this paid for by my insurance company. I wonder if I can get pre-approved and what the steps would be to do that? Guess I need to get back to the research!
As you can see, my weight isn't moving much. I'm staying under 145 and some days my weight is 143, I haven't gone below that. I've been snacking on junk food lately. I know I need to stop that and get to the gym more regularly. I don't know what my problem is!
I was really sad to hear that my bariatric surgeon, Dr. Veninga, has decided to retire. His patients are all upset and worried about him. He's been working too hard and is now taking a sabatical. I hope he is able to get rested and that he returns to the field. He's an excellent surgeon and his patients truly admire, respect and like him.
I haven't been to see another plastic surgeon yet, I'm thinking of trying one in Dallas. I'll let you all know more when I find out something new.
Today is my 11 month anniversary! A couple of weeks ago my brother Kevin came for a visit. As you will all recall, I did not tell my brothers about my surgery. My brother and I were talking and he came right out and asked me if I'd had WLS. Apparently my brother Kelly had asked him if I'd had it and Kevin said he hadn't ever thought about it but that if I had it was my business. Of course Kevin has always been a little snoopy so he had to ask. *laugh* We have always been very close and although I hesitated a moment, I just didn't want to lie to him about it. So, I told him the truth. He was amazingly cool about the whole thing. He told me he was glad I'd had the surgery and looking at me was proof enough that it was a good thing. He said he'd never seen me feeling so good or looking so good. It was quite a pleasant surprise!
My weight hasn't been budging but I know it is partially my own fault. I have been doing a good job of avoiding sugars but I have been eating too many sugar free candies. On a positive note though, I have been getting into my freezing cold swimming pool and doing my exercises for the past 3 days. I really think that once summer hits and I start swimming every day that my weight will begin to move again. I've been snacking on healthier foods, too. I was hooked on kettle corn for a while and had to break myself of that habit. I seem to drop one vice and quickly pick up another.
I need to stop beating myself up for not losing this last 25lbs and concentrate on my accomplishments. I *am* down 75% of my excess weight. I *am* able to get into size 11 juniors! I *am* off my diabetes and hypertension medications! I *do* feel wonderful and I *am* thankful that I was able to have this surgery. Size 12s are normal. Feel good about it!
Look at me! Down a pound! Okay, so its only a pound but its a very good sign for me that I'm back on track and doing the right things! Four days of pool exercises and eating right are paying off. I've been making delicious smoothies for breakfast. They are healthy, help me get in my protein and fruits and cut my sweet tooth a bit, too. Now I just need to stay on track! I want to break 140 soooo bad! Hey, wouldn't it be a kick if I could break 140 by my one year anniversary date? That is 10 days to lose 2 lbs. Its possible! Wish me luck!
I went to the grocery store today and they had kettle corn right next to the checkout. It called out to me, "come and get me, you know you love me!". I want you all to know that I walked out of the store without it. Small victory but a victory none the less!
Weighed in at my PCP today at 140! Yay! I've decided to change my goal weight to 120 instead of 117. Why fight for an extra 3 lbs? So that puts me exactly 20lbs from goal! I like the sound of that!
Happy re-Birthday to me!! I can't believe a whole years has passed by since I had my surgery. My dear friend and angelette, Tris Harris sent me a beautiful basket of flowers. There are pink and white carnations and lilies in a white basket. They are lovely, just like Tris! I had so many lovely emails wishing me a happy re-birthday/anniversary that I must have set some sort of record here on OH.com! To say that I feel blessed would be an understatement! I feel blessed and grateful to have had the opportunity to have this life saving surgery. My quality of life has improved vastly. I used to wonder what it would feel like to be healthy. Now I know. It feels wonderful.
For those of you reading my journal there are a few things I would say to you:
1.) This is not an easy road to travel. For your first few weeks or even months, you may regret your decision to have surgery. Know this going into it. These feelings usually go away once you've had your first weigh in and your first big loss.
2.) Your stomach is altered, not your brain. Some people come out of surgery and never feel hunger again. They will tell you, "food is simply fuel for me now". I am not one of those people. I have always liked food and I still like food. I try for quality over quantity these days. Savour your food once you are post op, enjoy the taste and the texture. Be creative.
3.) Plateaus happen. Deal with it. During a plateau you will likely lose inches. Don't get down on yourself, measure yourself! These are the times that your body rests and adjusts to the weight loss.
4.) Everyone loses differently and at different paces. Try not to compare your losses with other peoples losses.
5.) Celebrate your successes. This is a great journey, enjoy it.
6.) Keep your profile up to date. If you are like me, you poured over every profile you could pre op. You owe it to those who traveled this road before you, to tell your story, be it good or bad. These stories help us to understand what to expect and to feel less alone. Keeping a journal gives you a voice and is good for your soul.
7.) Just because you CAN eat more, doesn't mean you SHOULD. Even at one year post op, I still measure my food. I am now eating between 5-8oz of food at one sitting. I still track my food. Sometimes you will think you aren't full, but wait 15 minutes and usually you will feel full.
8.) When things get tough, encourage others. Helping someone else in their journey can only bring you joy. Shared pain is lessened.
May all your journeys be as rewarding as mine has been for me! Thank you all for traveling this road with me. I truly could not have been successful without all your help.
I've been exercising in my pool every day and keeping better track of my eating. It's paying off! I'm so happy to be losing again. My XL tops are all getting too big on me as are my size 14 shorts! Good things come to those who work out! *grin*
I'm taking it one pound at a time. *laugh* I'll take it any way I can get it! My angelette and dear friend, Jylle, had her surgery yesterday and is doing great. I'm driving her mother down to see her tomorrow!
Yesterday I went shopping at Old Navy to buy some new shorts. Last summer I'd bought shorts there in size 14/16. Those shorts are hanging on me now. I'm so excited to report that my new shorts are size 10!! I also bought a new t-shirt in a size L. Old Navy pants tend to run a little big and their shirts tend to run small. So the shirt would be a M in another store. Anyhow...that is my exciting news of the day. *laugh*
Happy Mother's Day! Today I am down 2 more pounds! Woohoo! I am living proof that there is weight loss after one year post-op. I am continuing to pursue my goals. I have really cut back on snacking on things like popcorn. I love popcorn and its not that bad for me but I think it makes me hold water (no doubt from the butter salt I was using). Instead, I now snack on beef jerky nuggets. They are kind of sweet and actually help my sweet tooth, also. I'm also having a smoothie once a day which keeps me surprisingly satisfied and less prone to snacking. The great thing about these two snack options is that they are both protein based. So, I'm getting back to basics and I'm continuing to do my exercises. Well, no great secrets, just doing what I'm supposed to be doing and being stricter about it. I'm not being strict to the point where I drive myself crazy, though. The other day I wanted a hamburger badly. I went to McDonalds and got a cheeseburger and a small fry. I ate it slowly and enjoyed it. I was happily full. For dinner I compensated by having a healthy fish filet. If you like fish, try the Tilapia from Sam's Club, it's awesome! They are individually frozen and a really good value cost wise. I cook mine from frozen without thawing. I simply put a slice of lemon on each piece and cook for about 15 minutes at about 400 degrees. I make a wonderful sauce for it out of Mayonaisse, lemon juice, parsley and fresh grated paremsan. Yummy! I aim for a minimum of 60 grams protien. I eat anywhere from 600-1000 calories a day.
For those of you wondering, no, I did not drop off the face of the earth. *laugh* I've just had vistors crawling out of the woodwork! The fourth (yup, fourth) wave of company just left on Sunday. I'm totally exhausted from entertaining people! On top of all that, my 18 year old neice has moved in with us. You'll see that I've put on a couple of pounds. I'm not too unhappy about it though, considering I've been cooking for company for a couple of months. I'm already working on getting back on track. I spoke with a friend of mine who just had her TT and breast lift and she is just thrilled with her new look and her plastic surgeon. I found out that he is on my insurance plan and I may book in to see him soon. I'd still like to have my plastic surgery sometime in the late fall. My friend has very similar stats to me and is now in a size 4! Wow....I just can't imagine being in a size 4. I'd be thrilled to be in any single digit size! Well, that is my update for now. More later!
Okay...today I decided to start calling my local plastic surgeons to see if I could find one that will work with my insurance company. You'll recall I had a bad experience with that a few months back. There are 6 plastic surgeons listed for my area. Of those 6 I have finally found 1, and only 1, who is willing to work with my insurance company. I now have an appointment for Sep. 9th. You'll get a laugh out of this....I talked to UHC today and told them that the other providers would not work with UHC. She told me that was illegal and if they didn't want to work with UHC that they should call and cancel their relationship. So....I called up Dr. Holzman's office and spoke with his receptionist. I told her what UHC said and that I'd reported him for not working with them. Hehe.... Serves him right and it was true, I did report him! Okay...I have the occasional mean streak. Nobody is perfect! *grin*
I made an appt. a couple weeks ago to meet with a plastic surgeon in Houston. His name is Dr. Pisarski and he did the plastics for my friend, Kristin Lacina. I got an opportunity to meet Kristin recently at our nearby outlet malls. Wow...she looks just tiny and fabulous! She used Dr. Pisarski for her plastics and he managed to get approval from the insurance company for both her tummy tuck and her breast lift. Since we have the same insurance I am very hopeful. Anyhow...my appointment is tomorrow! Woohoo! I'm both nervous and excited. I can't wait to get rid of all this extra skin! My weight has started dropping again. This is due to an increase in exercise and a decrease in snacking. My angelette, Dan, has promised to work out with me and help me tone/find some muscles. So...thats my update! Love you guys!
Yesterday a new friend was going to see a local plastic surgeon, Dr. Ryan Jackson. I'd heard good things about him but he wasn't on my insurance plan. I was invited along so I went with them and lucky I did cuz I found out that he *is* on my insurance plan, just not listed on the website because it is out of date! Wow....this guy did a super job on another friend of mine and he's very good. Also a hottie. *laugh* The upshot of it is that I have an appointment with him on Tuesday. I haven't made any decisions yet. I really loved Dr. Pisarski and his staff its just that the long drive to Houston and having to stay there in a hotel for possibly a week post surgery is less than appealing. On the other hand he does splendid work. We'll see.... New pic at the bottom of the page!
Down 2 lbs! Woohoo! Met with Dr. Jackson last week and they are filing the paperwork with my insurance company. He wants to do a full circumfrential abdominoplasty which goes all the way around. I'm a little nervous but I really want the extra skin off my behind, too! He wants to wait and do the breast lift a few months later. He says the full circumfrential is enough to do at one time. I'll trust him on that! Today has been one week since I met with him so I called his office but they haven't heard from my insurance company yet. Keep me in your prayers!
Oh...on a fun note... I went to a party at a friends house last week. As we passed under the stairwell to her apartment this really cute, really buff guy passes us. I smiled at him. My friend turned to look back and he was CHECKING ME OUT. Hehe.... very flattering! Woohoo! *grin*
Wow...September 11th...hard to believe it's been a year since the tragedies, isn't it? My heart goes out to all the families who lost loved ones.
As you all know, I went to see the Plastic Surgeon on Aug. 27th. They submitted the paperwork to my insurance company right away. Today it has been two weeks so I called the insurance company for a status check and was told they had not received the claim.
Turns out that my PS sent the info to the address listed on my claim card and that was not the correct address....go figure.... Not the PS staff's fault of course. So, I called the PS back and they are re-sending to the correct address and hopefully I'll hear something soon. No date yet...
Well kids, can you all say DENIAL? Got a call on Friday from my PS' office telling me they'd received word that my plastics were denied. The reason sited was "cosmetic". Now...they've seen the pics. In my opinion if the panni is hanging over the coochie, it ain't cosmetic. Anyhow...now the appeal process begins. Wish me luck. I'm feeling bummed. At least I'm losing weight again....
I am sad to say that I have received my second letter of denial on my plastics. I have a call into the Appeals Coordinator with United Healthcare to try and determine my next course of actions. In the meantime I'm looking at creative financing. *laugh* I may cash in my IRA's to pay for my plastics. My father has offered to help me out and I will probably take him up on that in the short term. I'm really bumming right now so any words of encouragement would be greatly appreciated!
After talking to the Appeals Coordinator I discovered that my next step would be to talk the HR department at my husband's company. He made that call for me and I now know that I have to file a second level appeal. I'm working on that letter now and I will also be taking pictures. I was going to go ahead and have my plastics done but as it is so close to christas I've decided to postpone things until after the first of the year. I also want to get through my appeals process because in the event that I have to self-pay I may seek a different plastic surgeon. Although I'd love to use Dr. Jackson, he's rather pricey. He wants $11k just to do the circumfrential TT. I know that I can get it done cheaper.
On a brighter note, I am going to be an Angel again for Cindy Von Gonten from my support group. Her surgery is coming up on the 11th! Please keep both of us in your prayers!
My li'l angelette, Cindy, has made it safely through surgery and is now home with her parents recovering. Way to go, Cindy!
I made it through Thanksgiving without putting on tons of weight, but I won't lie to you, it wasn't easy. I ate more pumpkin and pecan pie than was wise. There were far too many goodies around and I have to face the fact that I still have food issues.
I've finally finished writing my second level appeal letter. I modeled it after the great letters written by another AMOS member, Sue Barr. I need to take some pictures now to include with my letter. I'll try and post the letter on my website tomorrow and put in a link here if anyone is interested in reading it. Other than that, I'm plodding along. I'm still struggling with feeling like a failure for not reaching that elusive "goal weight". I realise that my doc was setting me up for failure by setting my goal weight at 100% excess weight loss. The average loss is 60-70% of your excess weight. I've lost over 90% of my excess weight. I should be thrilled. However, even at 126lbs I'm still in the overweight category. I'm undertall. *laugh* Okay...enough feeling sorry for myself. I need a swift kick in the ass.
I made a few changes in my appeal letter, got the icky photos developed and sent off my second level appeal on Friday (2 days ago) via certified mail. I think the letter is pretty strong and the pictures very convincing. I included a couple pictures in the document and added some hard copy color ones. You may view my letter by clicking on the following link: 2nd Level Appeal WARNING!!! This document contains nudes, do not view if you are likely to be offended! With luck I should hear something from the insurance within 2 weeks. Failing this appeal I will move on to the Texas Health Commission for intervention. Wish me luck!
Last night I attended a christmas party for my local support group. We had a great time and everyone is looking fabulous. We have a lot of new post ops and a few soon to be post ops. My angelette, Cindy, was there and looking great for someone just about one week post op. She's already down 20lbs!
Uh oh...post holiday weight gain! Happy New Year, everyone! Well, as you can see, I ate too much junk over the holidays and put on a few lbs. My skinny friends reassure me that they always gain weight over the holidays and it slips right off afterwards as their eating returns to normal. Geez, I certainly hope so! There were far too many sweets in my house over the holidays which I'm slowly getting rid of every day as I come across them.
My birthday is coming up on the 9th of January and I'll be hitting the big FOUR OH..., yup, I'm going to be 40 this year. Can I just say how happy I am not to be fat and forty? Hehe...
Still no word on my appeal. I'm waiting on pins and needles to hear if I have to file the next level. Well, thats my update for now!
Well, it's been over a month since I updated and I don't have any good news concerning my plastics. As I mentioned earlier, I submitted my second level appeal. About two weeks ago I got my latest denial letter. Basically it said, "We already denied ya, kid, why ya bothering us again?" It went on to advise me to contact my husbands employer (Dell) if I wished to further pursue the matter. Well...DUH, thats exactly what I HAD done and I was told to file the second level appeal. Grrrrrrrr......
So, we called the employer and UHC. UHC said they would check to see if my paperwork was, in fact, reviewed at second level. Apparently, the 2nd level appeal WAS in fact reviewed by the people appropriate to do it. UHC said for whatever reason it was their understanding that the procedure was a PLAN EXCLUSION period, regardless of need. The rep, however said she talked to the Dell administrators/liasons for the UHC/Dell relationship to discuss the plan intent. She said she basically asked if it was the intent of the Dell plan to exclude the procedure under any circumstances, or whether they were willing to consider the procedure to correct conditions which caused health problems. She said the Dell people said it was not their intention to exclude the procedure entirely.
So, she said she is going to submit this fact for consideration again in light of the fact that the procedure is not to be wholesale excluded. I brought up the issue that the previous UHC rep who told me to file the 2nd level appeal, had indicated to me under a very specific line of questioning that she thought the procedure WOULD be covered if deemed medically necessary (note that apparently UHC is trying to get away from using that term for whatever reason but that is what I had said to the rep at the time). The new rep didn't quite address that issue directly but did sort of merge it back into her conversation with the Dell folks leading to the understanding that the procedure would be considered under certain circumstances.
If you are reading this and have UHC through Dell and have been approved for reconstructive surgery, I would love to hear from you.
Starting Tai Chi tonight with my friend, Simon, who will be my "circle of guilt". Simon, if you are reading this, I'm going to punish you severely! *laugh*
Okay...so I made a decision recently. I've been messing about for ages and not making it to my goal weight. My 2 year re-birthday is coming up and I've decided to make my goal by my anniversary. I've calculated that I have just over 10 weeks and at a very reasonable loss of 2lbs or less a week I can make my goal. To do this I will take the following steps:
1) I will keep record of all foods I eat on Fitday.com
2) I will exercise a minimum of 3 times a week
3) Keep my protein levels up
4) Drink my water!
5) Eat no more than 1200 calories a day
I started doing this about 2 weeks ago and I've already lost 4.25 lbs! Woohoo! I will get there!
Some random thoughts I had today:
On a good day, when my heart is filled with love, and my head is clear, (which admittedly has been a challenge for me lately):
I think that, if a child gave me a scribbled drawing, saying "I made this for you", it would be the most beautiful picture ever.
I think that if a child tried to clean up a mess, even if it was a bigger mess afterwards, it'd touch my heart deeply.
I think that if a child sang me an off-key, nonsense song, it'd bring a huge smile to my face, and it would indeed be music to my ears.
I think that if a child brought me a dandelion with half the petals missing, it would still be the loveliest flower I'd ever received.
I was driving home from the airport this morning and a thought came to me....
If you love yourself, as dearly as you might love a child who earnestly and happily tries to be nice to you, you should also accept your limitations and faults, as easily as you'd accept the limitations and faults of that child.
And, as angry as you'd be at a nasty critic who'd hurt the feelings of children who are doing their best, I think you should be that angry at the internal critics who'd do the same thing to you.
So if you wanted to sing a song, for yourself, and stopped, embarrassed at how terrible you'd sound - even if no one was listening - maybe it's time to turn a sharp eye at the voice that told you not to sing. Maybe it's time to say "don't you *dare*! I don't care if it's the worst singing of the worst song in the world; you have no business hurting that person's feelings! *I* wanted to hear that song, sung out of sheer happiness, and a desire to make *me* happy as well!"
It's not just singing, of course... there's a lot in life where folks end up not giving themselves the same break that they'd give to someone else they loved, who they believed was doing their best.
I hope, the next time I hear the self-critic starting up, I'll be as ready to protect myself from unwarranted nastiness as I would be ready to protect another. I hope the same holds for everyone who reads this, who has their own nasty self-critic.
Embrace your inner child!
For those of you wondering about me, I've been away a lot lately. My granny is in need of constant care now so I've been spending weeks at a time in Oklahoma caring for her. It's been hard on me but it's truly a labour of love.
I have a date for my plastics! I will be having a full circumfrential tummy tuck on the 21st of May. I still haven't got approval from the insurance company but I'm tired of waiting. I'm going to self pay for now.
As you can all see, I've been putting on weight. I didn't realise how much until I went to the gym a short while ago and weighed myself. To say that I am an emotional eater would be the understatement of the year. The past several months have been very hard on me. Caring for my grandmother took everything I had. Sadly, she died on April 24th and we buried her on April 28th.
My plastics are coming up fast. Very fast! I will be having a lower body lift on 21 May with Dr. Wilder here in Austin. They say I will not be able to stand erect for 3 weeks and recovery is closer to 6 weeks. In about 3 months they say most of the swelling should be gone and I should be feeling pretty good. At one year, they tell me I will be amazed at the difference. Still....I'm nervous. Please keep my in your thoughts and prayers. My dear friend Christie Veyna will be my angel and will update you all.
I've been having some occasional pains which I thought were just from making poor food choices (and they were). The first time was after a very small bowl of lobster bisque (heavy cream). The second after having Thai ice tea (evaporated milk). I got this major pain under my ribcage that went all the way around my back. Profuse sweating. I could barely breathe and eventually threw up. I was talking to my father about this recently and he said it could be a hiatal hernia. I figured I'd best check into it before my plastics.
I met with the gastroenterologist on Friday. I mentioned my upcoming surgery and my symptoms and he's decided to do an EDG on me on Monday. He mentioned that I could have stomach neuropathy (Gastroparesis) caused by my diabetes. After reading up on this, I'm hoping it's just a hiatal hernia. I will have to fast from midnight tonight and show up at the clinic at 9:15am. The procedure will take about half an hour and they will sedate me. My mum is coming to town to cart me around because they don't want me driving for 24 hours. Oh joy. As if I'm not stressed enough.
In addition, my plastic surgeon is concerned about blood clots and now wants me to give myself Lovenox shots for 10 days after surgery. I'm not keen on blood clots but I'm also not keen on giving myself shots. Yikes!
The nurse talked to me about a new pain control system called On-Q. "ON-Q is a small high-tech balloon that holds local anesthetic (a pain numbing medication) and delivers it through a tiny specially-designed tube directly into the surgical incision site. The medication is delivered continuously and slowly for up to five days after surgery." I'm hoping that this will really target the area of pain and make recover easier. Because I am the first patient he will be using this system on, I get it free. I like free!
For those of you who track your food/exercise/blood sugars, I've found a great new site. In the past I've used Fitday but their food database sucks. The new site I've found is called Calorie King. Once you've signed up just click on Members to the left and that will take you to your personal pages.
3 more days until my surgery...
The EGD went good and the doc said he didn't see any real problems, just a bit of irratiation near the join of my new stomach. Nothing to keep me from my plastics on Wednesday. I'm still pretty groggy so I'm going to go lay back down.
Happy Fathers Day to all you Dads out there.
I'm now 3.5 weeks post op from my extended abdominoplasty (lower body lift). That means they cut me allllll the way around. The On-Q pain management system was da bomb! I never once experienced any real pain. I had some levels of being uncomfortable but that is it. Considering the magnitude of this surgery I think that is just amazing. I'm going to ask for it when I get my breast lift. I expected the surgery to take 2-3 hours but in actuality it took 7.5 hours. This is because the lower body lift is like 4 surgeries in one. They have to do back and front plus both hips and each time they turn you they have to clean and prep the new area. Apparently the cleaning and prepping is what takes so long.
Dr. Wilder did a great job and my scar is looking fantastic. I'm VERY happy with it. He wants me to wait 6 months before doing the breast lift. That way I'll be fully healed and if anything needs touching up or if I need some liposuction, he'll do it at the same time.
I've been taking progress pics of my scar healing and you can see them but please be aware there is some level of nudity. I've tried to make them as circumspect as possible. The hardest part of the recovery for me was sleeping once I got home. We ended up renting an electric recliner and I slept in that for about 2 weeks. I'm now able to sleep in bed and that has been a great relief! I have to prop myself up with pillows but thats okay.
The doc thinks I'm still holding about 5lbs in fluids as I still have some swelling. Once that is gone I'll be about 8 or 9lbs from my goal weight. Wow....finally, it seems like my goal weight is approachable. I'm so happy about that. He's asked me to take it easy for another 3 weeks and then I can swim and exercise. I'm pumped to get moving and take off the last of the weight! It's soooo cool to have a flat tummy. We won't talk about my new flat ass. *grin* Thats a family thing. *sigh* Actually, my doc says once everything settles into place that I'm going to have a Class A tush. *laugh* Stay tuned! I'm going to hold him to that promise!
I'm now one month post op from my lower body lift and feeling awesome. I've posted a new pictures below. I went to my support group meeting on Tuesday and everyone kept saying how "tiny" I look. For the first time in my life I actually felt small. What an amazing feeling!
One of the ladies in our group, whom I've always considered to be small, brought me a dress. I told her that I'd never be able to fit into one of her dresses but she assured me that once the swelling went away I could wear it. I went home and tried it on and what do you know, it fit! I took it off and looked at the tag and found out the dress is a size 7/8. Wow. I was totally gobsmacked!
I think I'm now at my lowest weight ever. It's difficult to tell because a few months ago I found out my home scale was way off. It was weighing me about 14lbs less that I actually was. The lowest it ever weighed me was 126 and now it weighs me at 124. My newer and better scale puts me at 136. I've been trying to correct my previous weights. Keep in mind that I'm still holding about 5lbs in fluids.
I drove in town yesterday with the top of my convertible down and all the truckers kept blowing their horns as they passed me. Every time they did it I thought I was going to jump out of my skin. *laugh*
My weight is holding steady but my body shape is changing somewhat. The swelling is going down a bit and my size 15 jrs fall off me so I'm wearing jr 13s now. They are a bit loose so I think I'll be in 11s soon. I feel wonderful and my scar looks just great. I'll be updating my scar pics sometime today.
As a long term postie who just had her 2nd re-birthday not long ago, I have a few things I'd like to say to those of you starting out on your journey:
1) Set realistic goals: Most people do NOT lose 100% of their excess weight. The reality is that most people lose between 60-70% of their excess weight. If you set your goal weight at a 70% loss and you make it to 100% you'll be thrilled. If you set your goal weight to 100% and only make 70%, you'll feel disappointed while your doctor will consider you a success.
2) Maximize your honeymoon period: Your first 6 months really is your golden period (for RNY patients). Many people make it to goal in their first 6 months. These are invariably people who stick to the rules. I know it's hard but the more you lose during this period the closer you'll be to goal. Once you pass that 6 month marker, it gets much harder.
3) Exercise: This is not my favourite thing but it truly makes a difference. Try to find something you like. I swim which amazingly burns off more calories than the treadmil!
4) Fluid Load: Fluid loading is so important to your long term success. It's a discipline and it will help you to stay on target. If you have trouble with this try popping a sugar free hard candy into your mouth after eating. This will get the saliva going and help a lot. Fluid loading means to drink as much water as you can up to 15 minutes prior to a meal. Eat. Wait up to 2 hours after eating to drink again and then begin drinking ending with a fluid load 15 minutes before your next meal.
The reason you don't want to drink after your meals is to help maintain satiety (that sense of fullness). If you drink with your meal, half an hour later all the food will leave your stomach, washed away by the liquids, and you'll be hungry again. If you wait, some of the food will still be in your stomach for up to two hours, feeding your brain and preventing you from getting hungry too quickly.
5) Drink your water: Research shows that some 60% of the time we think we're hungry, we're actually thirsty. Water will help keep you from getting constipated and it will help with the elasticity in your skin (so you'll have less hanging skin!). It is essential that you stay hydrated.
6) Measure your food: I constantly hear people saying, "I think I'm eating too much" or "I can eat 2 cups of food!". As I have said before...just because you CAN, doesn't mean you SHOULD! At 2 years post op I still get full on 5oz or less. Why? Because I measure my food. I consistently eat the same portions and therefore my stomach doesn't stretch.
So...how much should you be eating? At 0-3 months you should be eating 1-3 oz a meal. At 3-6 months you should be eating 2-4 oz a meal. At 6 months and beyond you should be eating between 3-8oz a meal. These are guidelines, consult your doctor for your own specifics.
Good news: If you have stretched your tummy. You can shrink it back. Really! At one time I got to where I could eat a cup of food. That wasn't really a problem but it scared me. I began to measure my food again and cut my portions down slowly. Guess what? I got full faster because I'd shrunk my stomach. Try it!
7) Track your food: It's so easy to slip back into bad habits. I find that tracking my food each day helps me to understand what I'm eating and keeps me aware of my protein consumption. Use a program like Fitday or find one you like better. You'd be surprised how fast those calories can add up!
8) Forgive yourself: You're going to make mistakes. We all do. You're going to test your limits. We all do. When that happens, forgive yourself and move on. After all, you're only human.
So...at 2 years post op, what is a typical days eating like for me?
Egg beaters with cheese and ham or Kashi GoLean Crunch or a Breakfast Taco with scrambled egg beaters, cheese, ham and a fat free tortilla
3 oz. meat/fish, salad and sometimes a quarter cup of rice or pasta or occasionally I get a peanut butter craving and I'll make an open face peanut butter sandwith on lite bread.
4 oz. meat/fish, salad and a quarter cup rice or pasta
Cheese stick or popcorn or Blue Bunny Krunch Lite or Beef Jerky
I try to get in a minimum of 70gr of protein a day. I know a lot of you are crazy about Atkins but I'm not good at limiting my carbs that much. In general I consume an average of 100 gr of carbs a day.
I met with my surgeon a couple weeks ago for my 2 year follow-up. As some of you will remember, my surgeon went on a year long sabatical just over a year ago. In the meantime I hadn't had any follow-ups, so I was happy to see him and get my yearly tests done.
My doc has one of those really cool Tanita scales that give you all your stats from BMI to BMR, FAT%, Fat Mass etc. Well didn't I just get the surprise of my life when the print out said:
FAT TO GAIN: .5 lbs
At the same time it said my BMI is 27.6 which falls in the "overweight" category. *sigh*
So I met with my doc and he said I looked great and that he considers me to be at goal.
um, say WHAT???
"But..but...but..", I sputtered, "my BMI is still out of range...and well...you can't be serious, can you?"
He looked at me, shaking his head and said, "Kyla, those are GUIDELINES. I'm your doc and I'm telling you that you look tiny and as far as I'm concerned you look great, you're healthy, and you can consider yourself at goal."
Looking dazed, I'm sure, I said, "but you set my goal weight at 117."
He took a deep breath. "That", he said, "was about 100 lbs ago. That was a guideline, too. Something for you to shoot for. Stick a fork in it, Kyla, you're done!"
Okay...so somebody pinch me. He said I should feel free to drop another 10-15lbs if I really want to but it's not necessary. Gosh, I love that man!
So, I guess I'm going to try out being happy where I am for a while. I feel as though I've been absolved from trying to reach some kind of impossible goal. What will I do with myself now that I'm not obsessing over my failure to reach goal? *laugh*
Okay...enough sputtering. As you can see, I'm still in shock.
Something the doc shared with me from a recent bariatric surgeons convention:
Three key success factors for WLS patients -
1) Tracking your food/liquids
2) Fluid loading
3) Not drinking with your meals
He also gave me an updated list of vitamins for post ops. Apparently there is a new emphasis on the B vitamins for posties. Check out the list on my support group website.
He also asked me if I had done the Cottage Cheese Test and I said no I hate cottage cheese. He laughed and told me to use Oatmeal! He said to make sure it was thick and not runny.
I know I haven't updated my LBL pics but I will soon, I promise. My scar looks amazingly good!
I'm heading to Vegas for a little over a week on the 23, returning around the 31st. Man do I need a holiday! My house has been like Grand Central. I've been cooking dinner for 12 a lot lately. Luckily all the housework is helping me keep my weight down. I'm feeling awesome and really digging my flat tummy. I'm hoping to get my boobs done around the 1st of November. *Rock on*
So much has happened lately that I don't know where to begin. My heart has been broken in so many places that it's not funny. I spent my time in Vegas and met up with a friend. Things went badly there and we are no longer talking. I have trouble letting go of the people I love and it's killing me. I returned home and things got worse. My baby grandniece, Emily Rose Fisher, died of SIDS on Tuesday morning the 9th of September. She was only 5 weeks old and such a beautiful baby. Her parents, my niece and her fiance, are just 19 and this was their first baby. The family is just heartbroken, as you can imagine. I was able to help with the funeral arrangements and I wrote the eulogy as well as making the memorial cards.
I met with the plastic surgeon and am now scheduled for my breast lift on Nov. 3rd. He'll also be tightening up my tummy a little more and I may have the bags under my eyes removed. The surgery will probably last about 6 hours and then I'll spend 2 days in the hospital.
I'm feeling shattered and I'm not sure I'll be back for a long time, if ever. Please keep my family in your thoughts.
Well, it's been a while since I updated. Some of you have been worried about me. Some of you have emailed me and some of you have even called me. I figured I'd better post an update before some of you start stalking me. *grin* Thank you all for your concern and support. I appreciate you all so much. I'm doing better, mentally, now. I just had too much death to deal with in the past year and a half. I know some of you will understand.
I'm am 13 days post-op today and feeling surprisingly good. My eyes are improving daily although they are still yellow and purple. My eyes aren't getting as tired as fast but I'm still trying not to overdo it. For the breast lift, I have to wear a soft bra 24x7 for two weeks and boy does that get old fast! I'm starting to feel like bondage Barbie.
The doctor prescribed darvocet for pain but I haven't had to take more than one or two a day. The pain this time has been minimal since there was no muscle repair to do. I don't like taking them, though, as they give me very odd hallucinations/dreams. The other night I dreamed that I was shopping in an antique store with my mother. I found an old persian carpet that I liked as well as a lamp. My mother took the lamp out to the car while I carried the rug around. I kept getting bits of it in my mouth. I finally started to head out to the car when I realized that I hadn't paid. I tossed the rug onto a chair and headed out to the car to toss a few things I'd been carrying around into my seat. Mother had started the car and was backing up toward the entrance. She parked and got out to help me. I mentioned that I needed to go back in and pay. About that time a salesman came out and I smiled and told him I was just heading back in to pay for my purchases. He guided mother and I toward a loading bay and then told us to wait there. As he walked away a cell door came down and trapped us inside. I looked at mother and told that they must have thought we were trying to do a runner and not pay. I started to panic because in my head the situation felt very real but finally I realized it was all just a dream and woke up. Whew.
Last time the doctor gave me vicodin but that upset my tummy and brought on the tummy pain. Good thing I have a high level of pain tolerance.
Some of you have asked exactly what I had done this time. Last time, as you may recall, I had a circumferential tummy tuck, also known as a lower body lift.
The circumferential tummy tuck that I had 6 months ago helped tremendously. I could fit into clothes better. I had less discomfort (from skin bunching up) when I would roll over at night. The plastic surgeon removed 7.25lbs of excess skin. Yeah, kinda gross, huh? He wouldn't do a horizontal and a vertical tummy tuck at the same time because the horizontal would take over 7 hours and he didn't want me under anesthesia any longer than that. I dropped about 3 clothing sizes and just felt better about the way I looked. I was still having a few problems with the skin on my back but it was improved a great deal. The only thing that still bothered me a lot was the sagging of my breasts. They were heavy and would sweat underneath, causing rashes and itching. I talked to my plastic surgeon and he recommended a breast lift. I had to wait 6 months after my tummy tuck to do it. When I went in to finalize things we talked about how I'd lost an additional 15lbs after my last surgery and how my stomach now wanted to cave in a bit toward the middle. We also talked about how the skin on my back still gathered up a bit. He recommended a vertical tummy tuck with the breast lift. This would replace the ugly keloid vertical scar, alleviate more of the skin issues and give me a defined waistline. All good, in my books. Toward the end, knowing that this would be the last bit of plastic surgery that I could afford, I decided to have a lower eye lift and get rid of the bags under my eyes. It was strictly a vanity thing, but what the heck. I was tired of having old, tired looking bags under my eyes. My mums are worse and my granny were awful by the time she died. That's pretty much it. I had a vertical tummy tuck, a breast lift and a lower eye lift. Oh, and he lifted the heck out of my coochie. Sorry if thats TMI for you guys. He took out a pie shaped wedge from my abdomen stretching from my breast bone to my pelvic region. I only thought my tummy was flat before. I think I'll probably drop another pant size. I lost a cup size in my breasts but they were a D cup so that was fine with me. They actually look bigger because they are perky. *laugh* I didn't need supplements so it's all still me. Even with two black eyes I can see an improvement in my eyes. The strain from 32 years of illness is no longer apparent in the bags that hung under my eyes.
My arms and inner thighs are saggy but I think I can live with that. I heard a wise plastic surgeon say this, "The enemy of good is better." Knowing when to stop is important. I don't need to look like Barbie to be happy. Being able to fit into clothes without tucking in my skin and being able to roll over at night comfortably and not having constant rashes is good enough for me. Now it's time to just learn to be happy with myself and my new body. I hope you are all doing well.
Well kids, it's been a while since I've updated. I'm feeling great and looking fabulous. I can't begin to tell you how happy I am with my plastics. Dr. Wilder did an incredible job. I have perky boobies! Woohoo! The absolute best part for me was the coochie lift. I don't want to embarrass anyone but it was really saggy and icky before. Most of the swelling on the side of my breasts is gone now and I bought a few soft bras to wear as I'm not supposed to wear underwires until I'm at least 3 months out. That will be another couple of weeks. I bought 36 C bras and to be honest they are a tiny bit small so I'm a full C now. The doc was right, too, when he said they'd look bigger cuz I'm perky now. *laugh* They stand up so nicely now that there is finally a nice separation between my breasts and my tummy.
I have been having some weird tummy problems lately with my tummy swelling up after eating and getting as hard as a rock. I really, really need to get to a doctor and get it checked out. I also realy need to get some updated pics of my scars posted!
I hope you are all doing well!
Hi Kids! Sorry it's been so long since I've updated. I'm doing fabulous and continuing to feel great. I am still having the tummy problems. I finally went to see a few doctors about it. The gastro doc kinda blew me off but put me on Nexium. That helped with the indigestion type problems but my tummy was continuing to swell. Eventually I found a new primary care doc who is an internal medicine doc and he put me on Zelnorm which is for IBS with constipation. Although that helped somewhat the tummy swelling never stopped. The constipation improved greatly, though. So now I've been scheduled for an image scan this coming Wednesday. He thinks all my surgeries may have caused adhesions which have wrapped around my intestine causing a kink. I guess we'll see on Wednesday if that is the case. It may mean an additional surgery. That does not thrill me because I don't want to mess up my pretty plastic surgery scars! Yikes!
I'm really, really, really happy with my plastics. I still think about having my thighs and arms done but I don't know if I will or not. I'm going to give it some time and really think about it.
Anyhow, other than all that, I'm still feeling great and loving life. My 3 year anniversary is coming up in about a month and I need to make a follow-up appt. with Dr. Veninga. I think he's going to be very happy with me. I haven't put on that proverbial 15 lbs that so many people gain. I'm still wearing 7/8s in juniors. Down from my pre plastic surgery sizes of 15 juniors. One really cool thing that happened recently is that mum and I went shopping the sales at Dillards. She found a really cute pair of Tommy Hilfiger jeans on sale and wanted me to try them on. I took a look at the tag and said, "Mom, there is no way I'm going to squeeze my butt into a size 4". She gave me one of those "mom" looks and told me to try them on. I did...and they FIT! I was amazed. Then I decided it must be a freak accident so I tried on size 4s in other brands and what do you know...they all fit! I hadn't tried on womens sizes in forever so I didn't know! How weird is it that I can fit into a size 4 but the BMI chart still says I'm 10lbs into the overweight category. Is that crazy or what? Oh well. Whatever, right?
I hope you all are doing wonderfully!
Yes. I have put on weight. I've been on vacation with my folks, though. I did get up to 140 but being home and getting back on track with my eating, the weight is coming off already. I've learned to not freak out when I gain 5lbs when I'm away from home. I know that once I get home and resume my normal eating routines, all will be fine.
I'm still experiencing some tummy problems. I had the upper GI and image scan done and they were unable to find a cause for my belly swelling. I am now scheduled to see a new gastro doc and talk about having either a lower GI or a colonoscopy. I'm seriously tired of having a swollen belly and I worry that it will stretch my stomach out. I love my flat belly so that really bothers me. The swollen belly is always constantly making me fear that I've gained weight and it's pushed me back into larger sizes. One of the other ladies in my group is having similar problems. They run bunches of tests on her, too, and they've also put her on Nexium.
Otherwise, things are good. I went for my 3-year anniversary appointment with my surgeon, Dr. Veninga, and am pleased to report that I was down 2 lbs from last year. Dr. V was very happy with me. He's such a super nice guy and I am so glad I had him for a surgeon.
My friend, Lisa, is now starting her WLS journey. She's asked me to be her angel. I'm so excited to do that for her and I will be so happy to watch her become healthier and happier. Go Lisa!
Hello, my friends. I am still alive and well. As you can see, I've been shedding the weight I gained at my folks.
I also went to see a new gastro doc, at the behest of my new primary care doc. I really like my new gastro doc. He opted not to do the colonoscopy right away. He said it's very invasive and he'd prefer to try other methods first. So...he took me off the Nexium and upped my dosage of Zelnorm. He said the Zelnorm is easier on my stomach. It has helped with the swelling and the constipation. He also suggested I start walking. He said motility helps with constipation. I go back to see him again on July 17th.
Also...my friend, Shauna, from my WLS support group, who has been having similar problems, went in for exploratory surgery a few days ago. Although they'd ran every test in the book on her and found nothing, it turns out she had a hernia. I hope the removal of it will stop all the pain she's been having.
Today I'm having a little minor surgery. I have a little dog-ear on the one side, from my breast reduction. My plastic surgery doc is going to fix that for me for free. Yay!
Have I mentioned that I own 3 bikinis and NO one piece suits? I know I have a big old scar down my belly but who cares! I still look good in it. :-)
I also saw my OBGYN doc recently. They did a bone scan on me and although my spine looks great, she said I had some deterioration in my hip joints. She asked me about exercise and I told her I mostly swim. She told me that swimming is not a good exercise to help with my joints. Apparently I need a weight bearing exercise. She suggested walking. Go figure. So...two docs in one week told me to get out and walk. In the meantime my hubby started walking. A LOT. He dropped 9 lbs while I was away on holiday gaining 5 lbs. *grin* Anyhow...I have started walking with him 3 times a week in the morning. We walk the trails near our house for about 30 minutes. It's not a lot but it's a start. I've also become even more conscientious about taking my calcium! Folks, I can't stree enough the importance of taking your vitamins. Even if your tests show up perfectly fine. I've know too many people whose tests all look great so they figure they don't need vitamins and then 5 years out, BAM!, they have osteo or something worse. I figure it's better safe than sorry. Y'know?
So anyway, that's my update for now. Feel free to write me if you have questions I can answer. I'm over 3 years out now and doing pretty great. I hope you all are doing well, too! Peace out!
Hello Campers! This is your 'Shameless Hussy' reporting in with all the latest news.
I saw my gastro doc on Monday. I have had some improvement since I last saw him. My belly is swelling less and my bowel movements have become more regular. I've been following his advice by walking (3 times a week for half an hour), eating more fiber and taking the Zelnorm 3 times a week. Since I've shown improvement he wants me to continue the treatment for another 3 months. He believes that I have IBS and Gastroparesis. Apparently this means that my stomach is slow to empty and is most often caused by diabetes. Am I not the lucky girl? *sigh* Still, as I said, it has improved and I'm back down a size or two in clothing since the swelling has gone down.
I went to my plastic surgeon on Tuesday and they removed the tape from my scar revision. It looks great. My scars heal beautifully, according to my plastic surgeon.
Last Saturday I met with a lady who is going to have a circumfrential in November. She's lost 126 lbs on her own. I met with a friend of hers some time back who is also having the same procedure but in December. They have the same trainer and the other woman has lots tons of weight, too. So much that she was featured in an Austin Fit magazie recently. I met their trainer and she is a super nice lady. I'm considering hiring her myself. She must be one hell of a motivator. She's quite fit and does bodybuilding shows.
My weight has been pretty steadily between 132-135 for a long time now. I'd still like to drop that another 10 lbs but my body refuses to cooperate. At 3+ years out I find that I'm dumping a lot on things I never used to dump on. I'm still having issues with my belly swelling, as well. I will have been on the Zelnorm for the months at the end of this month so I'm due to see my Gastro doc again, soon.
In other news, my friend Lisa is having her lapband procedure tomorrow. I'm headed to Dallas today to be there for her since she was kind enough to pick me to be her angel. She's going to do terrific and I can't wait to watch her progress!
Ouch! Yes, I'm up 8lbs! My hubby and I spent a couple of weeks in Seattle before christmas and enjoyed all our favourite restaurants. Then came christmas and all the holiday goodies and the weight crept up on me. I think now that the holidays are over my weight will return to normal soon enough so I'm not too worried at this point. Yesterday my hubby and I started walking again, so that's all good.
My friend Lisa is doing great and has lost over half of her excess weight. I'm really proud of her. My friend Christie, who lives next door, is also doing terrific and just had her plastics.
I'm still having gut problems. I know now that my tummy really swells and reacts badly to sugar. I am due to go back to my gastro doc but I haven't done it yet. Soon. Three other women in my group who have had similar difficulties have been found to have a bacterial infection called H. Pylori. I need to get in and get checked for that.
Otherwise, things are going well!
Weight: 145! *Ugh*
"We weight loss surgery patients cannot eat much at one time, but we can eat the wrong foods all day long.
But knowing what we should do is only half of the battle."
Wow... how very true! I read these words in a recent article about gastric bypass patients.
To me, it's kind of like being pre-op. We knew everything there was to know about dieting and still couldn't lose weight.
Now we're post-op. We know all the rules. We know what we should be doing. We just aren't doing those things. Fortunately, we now have a tool to help us. That doesn't always make it easy and like a kid challenges his or her parent, we often challenge our tools. "How can we get around it?" rather than "How best can I work with you?"
I know I'm certainly guilty of working around my tool at times. I know I can eat sugar until the cows come home and that fats make me sick. So I avoid fats and eat sugar. This is a life long behaviour pattern for me and one I'm trying to break but it's difficult.
I'm coming up to my 4th anniversary. I DO NOT want to go into my doc's office and weigh in heavier than last year so I'm getting my behind in gear and working to get this extra 7lbs off.
On the other hand, I want to celebrate my success. I AM 4 years out and I've done a great job of maintaining my weight. I'm happy. I'm healthy. I have wonderfully supportive friends and family. (Thanks, folks!) I have a few bad habits that I'm working on but I also have some good habits.
- I don't drink with my meals (well, ok, occasionally if I'm eating out)
- I exercise portion control
- I get my protien in
- I get my liquids in
- I exercise weekly, if not regularly
Some tips that help me?
- If I go out to eat with friends or family, I almost always share a meal. As a side bonus we can order the most expensive item on the menu and still get away pretty cheaply. My friends and family are beginning to enjoy it and it's helped them with their weight, too. I know it's hard sometimes to always be the example but it also has it's rewards. It's amazing to me that we still manage to have leftovers at times. Portion control is out of hand in this country!
- If I'm eating alone or unable to split a meal, I ask for a to-go box right away. I then place half my meal into the container and have dinner for later.
- When eating out I eat seafood whenever possible. Even if my shrimp comes in a rich sauce, it's much better for me than most other items on the menu. I also grab more of the shrimp, less of the pasta or other starches. I eat my salad before grabbing more food.
- When eating at home, I try to eat seafood a few times a week. When I stick to that, I consistently lose weight.
- I measure my food at home. I never eat more than 6 oz of food at a sitting. This ensures that my pouch stays small. (Of course, eating hershey kisses one at a time, all day long won't stretch my pouch. *kicks self in butt* ;-) )
I need to work on my sugar addiction and my occasional grazing. I need to be more consistent with my exercise.
What are your successes, your tips/tricks and what do you still need to work on? I'd love to hear from you!
If you're a fellow Austinite, click to subscribe to PFAMOS, the Pflugerville Association for Morbid Obesity Support.
My Weight Chart:
Current: 133 lbs on 06/19/03
Starting: 218 lbs on 04/25/01 - all time high: 245
Net Loss: -86 lbs
Distance from Goal: 9 lbs
Months Post-Op: 2.3 years
My Progress in Inches
|Grand Total|| || || 49.00|| || ||66.00|
Instructions for a Full Liquid Diet and other Diet Descriptions
The Oregon Center BlueBook. Instructions for the care of your pouch.
Bottom Buddy, a tool to assist you with wiping during and post-op
Fitday, a site for tracking calorie consumption, among other things!
Calorie King, an even better site for tracking food/exercise/blood sugars/blood pressure. Once you've signed up, click on Members on the left side of the page and that will take you to your personal pages. (Note: Unfortunately Calorie King has become a pay site. It's $20 for the year, which to me is worth it because the food database is tons better than fitday.)
Tuck That Tummy A great site for tummy tuck information!
Kaiser Family Foundation: A Consumer Guide to Handling Disputes with Your Private or Employer Health Plan
Thinner Self. A wonderful site created by my friend, Bruce Underwood. He's created a fantastic calculator for determining your weight goals and protien requirements. Check it out!
I met Dr. Veninga for the first time yesterday. My appointment was for 1:30 but Dr. Veninga had been called away for emergency surgery and I was asked to return at 3pm. When I returned Dr. Veninga was not back yet. I finally got to see him at about 4:15. He was very apologetic, a rarity for a doctor, in my experience. I liked him immediately. Even though he was running behind and had several patients to see, he took time to go over the procedure thoroughly and to answer all my questions. His office staff was also very nice. I'm looking forward to the procedure with such a nice doctor.
United Healthcare, Choice
I'm told that United Healthcare is the insurer of choice. I'm hoping for quick approval. Keep your fingers crossed for me!