I feel like I'm on my way... I have my insurance approval, had my psych eval (still waiting to hear whether or not I'm sane), and I have a consult scheduled with the surgeon. I've been between 80-100 lbs overweight since having my first kids (twins). I've been on every diet, drug, or fitness program you could imagine. I'm 36 years old, and my body feels like it's 70. I weigh 235, and my BMI is 40.3. This is the heaviest I've been without being pregnant. The older I get, the harder it is to lose the weight, not to mention keeping it off. It's time to do something drastic, because I'm sick and tired of riding the weight rollercoaster. Stop the ride, I want to get off!

 Had my consult with Dr. Chute on 09/20. I was very impressed with him and his staff. Surgery is set for 12/29/05. Couldn't be better timing, because I got a call from my primary doc yesterday telling me that I now have diabetes and SVT (a common heart arrhythmia). I guess I kind of expected it to happen eventually, and hopefully changing my eating habits and losing weight with the surgery will improve or cure these conditions.

 New surgery date: 11/17/05! I originally chose the end of December because I thought I had all of January off from school. I double-checked my schedule, and it turns out I start classes again right after New Year's! Luckily, I have a couple weeks off around Thanksgiving, so I was able to reschedule my surgery.

Apparently, I've lost a couple of pounds. I'm at 231. My doc didn't give me a weight contract stating how much he wants me to lose before surgery. He just said, "Of course, you want to go into surgery as light as possible, and the pre-op liquid diet should take care of that. Just be careful not to gain any added weight." I think I can handle that.

I finished my psych eval yesterday. I guess I've been deemed sane enough to have WLS. Sweet.

Things I'm looking forward to after wls:
1. Tying my shoes without feeling like I'm going to pass out
2. Sitting with my legs together, and being able to cross them!
3. Not worrying about starting a fire from my thighs rubbing together when I walk
4. Being able to walk around the block without looking/feeling like I just ran a marathon
5. Going through turnstiles facing FORWARD, instead of sidling through them
6. No longer being the token "Jolly Fat Friend" in my group
7. Skinny sex!
8. Shopping in any clothing store I choose
9. Wearing shorts in the summer
10. Wearing camis or tank tops without the extra-wide padded bra straps sticking out
11. Playing with my kids
12. Riding a bike
13. No more diabetes, which means no more finger sticks!!
14. More energy for cleaning my house and keeping it picked up
15. Less time in the shower, less time shaving my legs (right now, I got a lotta leg to shave!)

Things I will miss about being fat:
1. My "boob table", as my husband affectionately calls my belly. Where will I prop my book when I'm reading, and where can I rest my plate at the church potluck???
2. The extra layers do keep me warm in the winter..... but a cute little leather jacket can do the same, right???

One month and counting!! I can't wait to sit on the Losers' Bench!

A good friend of mine has a sister, brother, and sister-in-law who have all had wls. The sister-in-law is doing great, but the brother has been sick (his blood sugar drops too low because he doesn't get enough carbs... last time, he almost ended up in a coma), and now the sister is really sick. Her illness isn't directly related to her wls, but my friend told me that the nurse in the ICU told her that she sees a lot of wls patients in ICU because they don't take good care of themselves after surgery, i.e. not eating enough, not taking their supplements, getting severely dehydrated, etc. She said that their immune systems are shot because they can't take in enough calories to keep their bodies healthy. Am I a fool to believe that I will NOT end up as one of those people?? I plan to follow my surgeon's instructions to the letter, and I'm already developing strategies to help me keep up with my supplements, protein and water requirements, etc. The therapist who did my psych eval said that my MMPI profile shows that I will be a very successful wls patient, and that I am very likely to follow the guidelines. I do not have an addictive personality, in fact, I didn't even register on the scale of addictive behaviors (he was a little surprised to see that). I would like to believe that I will do everything I say I will do.... I think that part of the draw of wls for me is that I will HAVE to follow the rules to stay healthy and feel good. I will no longer have the choice to have 5 giant Reese's peanutbutter cups for lunch. (Okay, yeah, I did that once... okay, twice. That's my story, and I'm sticking to it.)

I ordered the high-protein liquid diet that my surgeon recommended (check out bariatricdiet.com), and I've been sitting here, staring at the carton, thinking about everything. Twelve more days until I start the liquid diet. Twelve more days to eat like a fat person, if I want to. Twelve more days of cakes and candy. Damned sweet tooth. I am finding, however, that sugar-free is not so bad. I ordered some stuff from bariatriceating.com, and they included some sugar-free cookies and candies which actually didn't suck. I also got some Crystal Light, and it's waaaaay better than I remembered. Yummm.

I was telling my hubby about my plan to start cooking healthier meals, and his eyes lit up. He is a true man of the 1950's, even though he's only 38. He is at his happiest when I stay home all the time, clean like my life depends on it, and greet him after work with a hearty, home-cooked meal of meat and potatoes, cheerfully and single-handedly cleaning the kitchen afterward while he dozes in his recliner. Gee... I guess I sound a little bitter and sarcastic. That's how his mom did it, and that's how my mom did it, too. BUT... I am soooo not his mom, and I'm not my mom either. I have a regular part-time job, a casual/on-call part-time job, plus I'm a full-time college student. I have four children who need rides to various practices and clubs, need help with their homework, need a referee in multiple squabbles, need a listening ear and a shoulder to cry on, need clean clothes, etc. I have fibromyalgia and diabetes. Yeah, my house is a mess. Okay, my seven-year-old slept in his clothes last night and then wore them again to school. That's right, I have class tonight, so my family will be dining on frozen pizza and chicken pot pies while I pick up something quick for myself from the gas station while my gas tank is filling. And yes, my husband reminded me this morning that I am behind on laundry, and he doesn't have clean pants for his meeting tonight. But, am I a good mom?? HELL YES. My kids know that they are loved, and they are secure. So they have poptarts for breakfast sometimes. It's not gonna kill them. Am I a good wife??? YOU BET. My husband knows that I love him, knows that I support him in his work, and knows that I will be faithful to him until the day I die. June Cleaver I am not, but I know who I am, and that is good enough.

Okay, I don't know where that loooooong rant came from. How did I go from talking about eating healthier to THAT??? I could delete it..... but I'm gonna leave it.

I'm wondering if my plate is too full (no pun intended). Maybe it is stupid to plan wls while going to school full-time, and right before the holidays. I will have to do some rearranging of schedules to accomodate everything. Will I feel well enough to concentrate on my readings and essays? Will I feel like celebrating Thanksgiving with the family when I'm one week post-op? Am I silly for worrying about this stuff?

Every time I talk about my upcoming surgery, my hubby just shakes his head. When I ask what the problem is, he tells me that it bugs him that I'm excited about getting this done when he's the one who will have to deal with it if something goes wrong. I thought he was supportive, but now he's saying that I should just be able to lose weight with diet and exercise alone without having to resort to surgery. Yeah, cuz diet and exercise have worked sooooo well for me over the past 16 years. I keep trying to get him to read articles and check out websites like ObesityHelp.com, but it seems like he just wants to think what he wants to think. (Have you ever used that line on someone? "You think what you want to think... I'll think what I know." An ex-boyfriend used that one on me all the time. Trouble was, HE was the idiot- I think he may have even been the Devil- and he was usually wrong.) Not to say that my husband is an idiot or the Devil.... he's a wonderful man, very intelligent, and we are very happy together. It's just that I'm starting to feel that not only does he not "get it", he also has no desire to "get it". I just keep telling myself that he will be so happy when I am healthier, more attractive, and am better able to do physical things... not just sex, although that is a biggie, but stuff like mountain biking, swimming, water skiing, etc. His family is very athletic, and I've always been the fatty looking on from the sidelines. Well, no more.

Yeah, so I was watching the news this morning, and they say that there's a new study that shows that the death rate from bariatric surgery is higher than the 1% we're told... it's more like 3-5%. So I feel a little freaked out. That's still not a very high number, but still.... do I really want to do this? Is it worth dying for? Doing a little more soul searching today.....

I checked into that news story a bit more today. Turns out the info only included Medicare patients.... my understanding is that you have to be either 65 or older, or permanently disabled, to qualify for Medicare. Soooooo..... my guess is that the people in their study probably had a myriad of chronic conditions that lowered their odds of success.

I still feel good about my decision. I know that I am doing the right thing for ME. I can't make or break my decisions based on what other people think I should or shouldn't do, and I shouldn't let it get to me when people disagree with my choices. I am an intelligent person, and I have put a great deal of thought and research into my choice to have wls. I hope that the people who know me best understand this and respect my choice.

Three weeks from this Thursday and I will be a big LOSER!!! I'm getting really excited. I saw the dietician at North Memorial last week for diabetic ed, and she was soooooo supportive. She gave me some great info, and really knows her stuff as far as bariatric surgery goes. I haven't met the dietician at Abbott yet, but I hope he/she is as good as the one at North.

The diabetes thing sucks. My fingertips have hundreds of tiny scabs from finger sticks, and my sugars have been all over the place during the last couple days. I think it's because I've been sick.

Yes, I have bronchitis. I get it every flippin' fall. About 3 years ago it turned into pneumonia, and I had to spend a week in the hospital. So now I have to start nebs every 4-6 hours around the clock to kick this before my pre-op physical. I will be severely pissed if bronchitis comes between me and my surgery.

I have this cute coat that my hubby gave me for Christmas a couple years ago. Last year I couldn't fasten it because I'd gotten too fat. By this Christmas, it should be fitting me just fine!

Alright, I told myself I wouldn't do this, but I really have to get something off my chest.

My husband has become almost totally unsupportive of my upcoming surgery. At first, he said he didn't understand the whole thing and didn't know why I couldn't just diet and exercise like everyone else, but that he'd support me. Then it turned into just shaking his head anytime I mention it, like I'm crazy or deluded or something.

I figured that I should start getting my ducks in a row since my surgery is only three weeks away, so I mentioned to my husband that, on the day of surgery, I will need to be at the hospital at 5:30am to check in for my 7:30 appointment. I wanted to make sure he could make arrangements to miss work (he owns his own company, so he can pretty much do what he wants). Well, he says, "I guess I'll have to see what's going on that day. Why would I have to be there?" Gee... I figured he might want to show a little support and at least be on hand to see how things go. Guess not. I asked him if he wants me to find someone else to take me to the hospital, and he goes, "Maybe. We'll see." Nice.

I feel like he doesn't even care about me. I've been sick with bronchitis for a week, and then a couple days ago I got food poisoning from some bad sushi. He's been really annoyed with me for being sick and not getting the housework done. He's been short with me and not at all sympathetic. Now he doesn't even care enough to come to the hospital for my surgery to even see whether I live or die.

Then, to top it all off, my teenage son, who likes to parrot my husband when he gets pissed (he's been calling me 'lazy' and 'selfish' the whole time I've been sick, because I'm not up to driving him around all the time), goes, "Your surgery is November 17th? God, Mom! I have stuff to do around then! Why can't you just wait? Way to be selfish!" I know he's just a dumb kid, but it just added to my hurt.

I don't want to ask my sister or friends to take time off work to drive me... I don't feel like I should be their responsibility. What I'm about to say sounds so pathetic... I can't believe I'm about to say it, but here goes: I guess I'll just take the bus or a cab by myself, and Dr. Chute can call my husband at work to let him know how the surgery went. Then, if I make it through okay, he and the kids can come see me after he gets done working.

GOD, I feel really unloved right now. Really. I'm not trying to be a whiner, I'm really not. I guess the level of my husband's apathy just feels like a kick in the gut right now.

10/28/05, evening-
My hubby just sat down with me and said that he will gladly come to the hospital with me on the Big Day, and apologized for being unsupportive. WOW.

I'm not sure what changed his mind, but I'm glad. I feel much better now. With his support, I can handle anything.

Well, turns out that what I thought was food poisoning is actually something called trazodone withdrawal syndrome.

I've been taking dopamine uptake meds and SSRI's for my fibromyalgia for 3 years, and so I've also been taking trazodone to help me sleep at night. Well, my primary doc changed some of my meds, and they didn't work as well, so I stopped taking them. And, nurses being the world's worst patients, I decided that if I wasn't taking the other meds I wouldn't need the trazodone to help me sleep. Stupid, stupid, stupid.

Take note: you cannot, I repeat, CANNOT stop taking dopamine uptakes, SSRI's, or any other drugs that can be prescribed for depression as well as for fibromyalgia or sleep aids, cold turkey! They need to be gradually weaned down over a period of a month or two.

Because I stopped taking my meds cold turkey, I am now suffering from a withdrawal syndrome characterized by horrible nausea, chills, sweats, vertigo, dizziness, weakness, and horrible electrical shooting pains all over. AWFUL. Since I don't want to go back on the drugs, I am on a regimine of a low dose of Antivert (an antihistimine, like Dramamine, for vertigo) every four to six hours around the clock for the next two weeks, or until the symptoms are gone, whichever comes first. I repeat: AWFUL.

Oh, yes, I am soooo proud of the way I put my nursing know-how to use. NOT. "Cold turkeyyyyyyyyy.... has got meeeeeeeeeee..... on the run....."

In reading through my profile so far, I feel like I've done a great disservice...

I haven't thanked God for what I have or given him proper credit. I feel especially bad about this since I am studying to go into Christian ministry. Just goes to show that we are ALL human, and we ALL lose sight of what's truly important at times. So now I want to give you just a little glimpse of what God has done for me and what he is to me.

God has been so good to me. Even before I knew him, before I came to be, he had a plan for my life. He wanted my love and friendship, and he gave me his love and friendship even when I didn't want it and didn't think I needed it. When I was a troubled teenager, he used an unplanned pregnancy to teach me grace and mercy and to bring me back to him. When I was a lonely young single mom, he brought my babies' father back into our lives and gave me a loving husband and a tender father for our children. He showed me by example how to be a loving parent. When my own parents died, he parented me. When I've been sick he has either healed me or given me the strength to deal with my pain. When he decided that it was time for me to devote my life to encouraging and reassuring others of their personal worth in Christ, he paved the way for me to go back to school. He has been a father, teacher, friend, husband, healer, savior, counselor, and comforter. My relationship with Jesus Christ is as real and personal to me each and every day as any human relationship I have. I owe him everything, and without him I am nothing. I give God the full praise and glory for everything I have, everything that I am, and everything that I am yet to be.

I thank God every day for wls, the tool he's given me to regain my health. No matter what the outcome, I will thank him, praise him, and give him all the glory.

Pre-op class today at Abbott.... it was okay. Lots of good information. There were several presenters: the bariatric program coordinator, a nurse from station 40 (the post-op floor), a pre-op nurse, the dietician, an anesthesiologist, a pharmacist, and the healing coach from the alternative medicine center.

I found myself getting a little verklempt when the presenters talked about the actual surgery, from check-in until the recovery room. I guess I'm getting a little nervous about being put under. I had a really bad experience with anesthesia during my hysterectomy a few years ago... it took four hours for me to wake up, and then I had to be on oxygen for two days to keep my O2 sat levels up. I didn't get any pain meds in recovery because I'd stop breathing every time they gave me a little. In fact, I didn't get any pain relief for about 6 hours after my surgery. My pain was about a 20 on a scale of 1-10, and I was crying, and a mean nurse goes, "Quit crying. It'll just make it hurt more." Real nice.

Soooooo..... needless to say, I don't relish the idea of repeating that scenario. Dr. Chute ordered my anesthesiology records from that surgery, so hopefully they'll be able to figure out what went wrong so it doesn't happen again.

One cool thing I didn't know: the alternative medicine center offers massage, reflexology, healing touch, etc FREE when you're inpatient. So I requested a little massage and reflexology for pain control and relaxation post-op.

Also, Abbott has these new warming gowns. Actual hospital gowns that you can plug in to stay warm. Sweet. There's nothing worse than freezing in the hospital, and I have temp intolerance, so it's really hard for me to warm up.

I went through my stuff and pulled out my will, healthcare directive, power of attorney, and the letters I wrote to my dh and kids in case I die. If something happens, I want Scott to know where that stuff is so he doesn't have to search around for it. I also bought the kids' Christmas presents from Santa Claus this week... just in case. Morbid, I know, but those are the kinds of things people don't think of right after a death. I'm sure I'll be fine, but.... you never know.

I guess that's why I got misty during the pre-op class, worrying that something will go wrong and I'll never wake up. Even though I know that, if that happens, I will wake up in Heaven standing in God's presence.... I hate the thought of leaving my husband, kids, family, and friends. I even had a few minutes when I wondered if this surgery, this chance for health, is worth dying for. Is a fat, sick, tired mom better than no mom at all? Would my kids ever be able to forgive me for electing to have a surgery that took my life? I need to spend more time explaining this to them, I think. Although, when I talked to my younger kids, they were totally excited about "mom getting really skinny, and being able to run and play with us, and ride bikes with us, and swim with us!" :-)

Last night I had my Final Feast: take-out from Red Lobster! I loooooooove seafood!

I had to take my kids and their friends to church, and my dh was busy, so I thought the feast was a definite no-go, but a good friend suggested ordering it take-out and eating it at church while the kids were in their programs. What a great idea!

Sooooo.... I had the lobster chops (grilled scallops wrapped in half lobster tails) with melted butter, grilled shrimp, garlic mashed potatoes, those awesome cheddar biscuits, and bananas foster cheesecake for dessert. Yummmmmm.

Today I started the liquid diet. I ordered the med-diet, and the tastes aren't as hideous as I thought they'd be. I realized last night: I will not be eating real textured food again until somewhere around Christmas! WOW..... that seems so surreal.

The only thing I worry about with the liquid diet is my blood sugar. I am diabetic, not on any meds, though. When I don't eat enough, my blood sugar plummets and I feel soooooo sick. I'm waiting to see if the sugar-free/low-carb thing does a number on my sugars.

I'm in the final stretch, headed for the Losers' bench!! 

This liquid diet is kickin' my frickin' butt.  I AM STARVING!!! STARVING, I SAY!!! 'Nuff said.

I am a Loser! Surgery was on 11/17, and everything went very well. Megan W is an awesome angel... she was right there at 5:30am to keep me and my hubby company in pre-op and answer all our questions. I lost 7 lbs on the pre-op diet, and that made me happy.

 I was released yesterday afternoon. I am dealing with some nausea and surgical pain, but nothing too bad. The gas is what's really getting to me today... I can hear it and feel it in there, but it doesn't want to come out! Ouch!!

The nurses in the hospital were very kind and helpful, and very attentive. I don't think I ever had to wait more than a couple minutes for my call light to be answered. Good pain control , and when I got really nauseated the nurse was right there with some compazine to take care of it. My only real complaint is that my neck muscles are really sore. I just couldn't get comfy in that bed!

I am really glad to be home. Well, off to take a little walk and shower.

Ever notice that it's much easier to take care of yourself when the fam is gone for the day?? My hubby went to work this morning and all four kids went to school, and I have had a liesurely morning of eating, sipping, walking, sipping, showering, sipping, watching TV, sipping, walking.... you get the idea.

Last night I was really pushing to get my fluids in.... the nurses drilled the horrors of dehydration into my head in the hospital. Today I am actually ahead of the game! I do not feel as overwhelmed as I did all weekend. I finally feel like I can do this!

Yesterday I walked about half a block and, aside from walking around the house, that was it. Today I walked 2 blocks, and I felt great! I was waiting for the familiar leg cramps and shin splints, but they never came. I was waiting to feel out of breath and exhausted, but it didn't happen! WOW! YAHOO!!! THANK YOU, GOD!!!

Now, I know that this is no guarantee that every day will be like this. But if I can have more days like this than not, life will be fabulous.

I went to Let's Dish with some friends a couple days before surgery and made 12 meals to freeze for my family so that I won't have to worry about them starving while I recover. Then, on Saturday, a good friend brought over a fabulous potroast dinner, complete with rolls and dessert. MAN, did I feel sorry for myself!!! I stood over that pan and just SNIFFED..... oh, it smelled so good!!! My fam said it was excellent.

Yeah, I miss food already. BUT, when 2 oz of cream of wheat and 2 oz of yogurt makes you feel stuffed for the next hour, you can't miss it too much. And I know I will get to eat good food again, just in small amounts.

Scott and the kids have been pretty helpful and supportive, but the teenagers have to do the eye-roll in protest as they are helping out. Scott was not real gung-ho about my having this surgery, but now that it's over and he knows that I'm alive and kicking he is really supportive and helpful. I am lucky to have a loving family that supports me.

Yeah, life is pretty good. God has been good to me.

I had to go to my primary today for a respiratory infection, which is par for course for me this time of year. She put me on the scale, and I weigh 119 lbs!!! That is 5 lbs less than my pre-op weight, 11 lbs less than my weight at my pre-op physical, 12 lbs less than my weight at my consult with Dr. Chute, and 16 lbs less than my highest weight! 16 lbs gone forever! YAY!!! YAY!!! YAY!!!

I started calling my in-laws, figuring I'd better tell them about my surgery before Thanksgiving dinner, when my tiny cup of soup will give me away. They're actually sounding very supportive. Maybe it was silly of me to be so afraid of their reactions. Anyhow, what can they really say?? What's done is done, right?? So far, though, they've all said that they're happy for me and are glad I'll be healthier. Sa-weet.

Two weeks out, and I'm feeling great! I've lost 19 lbs! I can walk 2 miles without pain and without getting tired, I can blowdry my hair without my arms aching, I sleep well at night, and I don't need a nap during the day anymore. This is amazing. My blood sugar is normal. My blood pressure is normal. I have dropped a pants size. All this in just two weeks!

I've started eating soft foods, and it ROCKS. I am so glad to be eating something that stays in my stomach for a little while... something I can chew! I haven't vomited so far, but I did have diarrhea for the first week. I've only dumped twice: once from Crystal Light lemonade (Megan was right: I should've cut the amount in half!), and once from the high-protein chicken broth (a yucky, lumpy powdered mix) from my pre-op diet. Too much fat in that, I guess. Yesterday I had a scrambled egg and a toast triangle with peanut butter for breakfast, some tuna salad on crackers for lunch, and pistachio crusted salmon with cheddar garlic mashed potatoes for dinner. Oh yeah, life is good!

People are starting to notice that I look different. Several people have told me that my face looks thinner. That feels really good!

I've been going to the fitness center every day at 6am with a couple friends of mine. I walk on the treadmill for 40 minutes, and then I lift some weights to work on my arms, pecs, and back muscles. No work on the abs yet... I'm waiting on clearance from Dr. Chute before I go there.

After the first week I had no surgical pain, except for the incision on my leg. That one is weird. I have a spot that is numb a couple inches to the left of the incision, and the outside of the numb area burns. The incision itself doesn't hurt. I know that it's nerve trauma, and I hope it will resolve itself soon because it's really annoying.

I am so blessed. I haven't had any complications, hardly any pain, food goes down well and stays down, I'm exercising, and the weight is coming off. Thank you, God, for my new life!!

I had my 3 week check up w/ Dr. Chute's nurse, Heidi. She is so nice! I weighed in at 210. That's -21 from my consult weight! Yeah, baby!

I started on the B-12 injections. No big deal... just a little poke in the belly fat. I've also got the go ahead to start taking calcium supplements. I chose Viactiv because it tastes like candy!

My incisions are all healing nicely, and Heidi says that I'm doing great.

I also had my appt with Joni Callahan for my nutritional consult. She was pleased that I'm already a big label reader when it comes to food products. We talked some about making wise choices, and she laid out a few snack items and had me demonstrate that I could choose the one that would be best for me. She also showed me this website, I think it's something like mypyramidtracker.com, where you can log in your food choices for the day, your activities, etc, and then you can send them to her and to your surgeon. She said she wants me to send her a nutritional summary once a month. I guess I'm on the right track. I'm getting pretty close to the protein requirements and the fluid requirements, and I'm getting out and moving, and I guess that that's the most important thing right now.

Did I mention that I've lost 21lbs???????

My one-month anniversary was on 12/17. I weigh 203 lbs. So far I have lost 28 lbs,  2 pants sizes, and one shirt size. I am a solid size 16! I am eating normal foods, but have to stick to ones that I can chew up easily. That hasn't been too difficult, though.

Last week I had stomach pain all week! I tried calling the nurse at Dr. Chute's office a couple times, but she never called me back. That wasn't cool. I thought I maybe had a stomach bug, but then the cramps and nausea lasted too long for that. I tried eating bland foods, even went back to clear liquids for 24 hours, still no relief. Finally, I figured it out: it was those dang Viactiv calcium chews! Something about them just made me ILL. I haven't taken them for a couple days now, and the pain is GONE. I guess it's back to Tums for me. Oh, well. Live and learn, right?




Happy New Year! I am in One-derland! I am seven weeks post-op, and weigh 199.5 lbs. I am under 200 lbs for the first time in several years!

I really slacked off over the holiday break... my excuse was that it was too hard to get out there and exercise with all four kids home. I snacked a lot and wasn't real great about getting all my fluids and protein in, and I only lost 2 lbs last week after averaging 4-5 lbs a week.

Well, no more of that!! I am back on track! I figured out that I need to lose at least 6 lbs a month to reach my goal weight by my surgi-versary, and I am ON IT.

I switched up my workout today... I walked 1 mile and jogged 1/4 mile. That 1/4 was not all at once, mind you... it was 1/16 mile out of every 1/4 mile... but it was TOUGH. Can I do it again tomorrow? Dunno. Am I gonna try? Sure.

Nice WOW moment on New Year's Eve: I was trying to find something to wear to a friend's party and found that all my clothes are TOO BIG. Sa-weet. So, it's off to the thrift store for me to find some jeans that aren't too baggy and some shirts with neck and arm holes that don't gape open.

This year is gonna be great!

Tomorrow it will be two months since surgery. I have lost 36 lbs and I am wearing a size 14. I feel great, and my energy level is unbelievable. My friends and family can't believe how fast I'm changing. My little ones guage how much weight I've lost by how tightly they can wrap their arms around my waist! I'm not sure how many inches I've lost... I'll have to get my original measurements from Dr. Chute's office at my three month check-up.

I've been slacking on exercise lately. I just can't find a good time to do it. Lame excuse, I know. I gotta get my butt back in gear to keep my weight loss going!

Yeah, life is sooooo good.


I just had my three-month surgiversary, and things are going well from a weight loss standpoint. I've lost 50 lbs and a combined 17 inches off my waist and hips. That's the good news.

I had a fibromyalgia flare-up this last month due to lots of stress at home. Very disappointing and discouraging, because I was hoping that I was through with this disease forever post-op. I hate feeling like crap, especially because my husband attributes it to laziness and yells at me every day because I'm not keeping up with the housework.

Last month my 16 yo daughter had a spontaneous primary pneumothorax (a lung collapsed for no good reason), so I took her to the ER where they inserted a chest tube to reinflate the lung. The tube was in for a couple days, then she went to the pulmonologist to have it pulled. It was an extremely painful few days for her, so it was emotionally painful for me. She's fine now, but the doc says there's a 1 in 4 chance of it happening again, so she can't play contact sports anymore and anytime she says her chest hurts we worry that it's happening again.

Four weeks ago my 16 yo son broke his ankle skateboarding. It was broken in three places, and he had surgery to insert three screws to hold the bone together. He was in the hospital for two days, which meant I was at the hospital for two days. Again, physically very painful for him, emotionally painful for me. He was bed ridden for the first week, and hasn't been able to put any weight on that leg. I've been driving him to school and back, which is a strain because I have to get up an hour and a half early to get him there on time. He has two more weeks before he can start to walk on that ankle.

Last Thursday my husband had surgery on his collarbone. He broke it in September when he fell off his mountain bike, and it never healed. Of course, he went back to work after the first week, so it's no wonder (He's a contractor). Thank God it was an outpatient surgery. The surgeon put the bone back together with a metal plate. He says the pain isn't bad, so that's good.

Throw in a backed up sewer drain that flooded my laundry room, problems with phone service, a couple kids with stomach flu, going to school full-time, frequent arguments with my husband, and it adds up to more stress than I can handle.

It's a good thing I'm basically healthy... if all this had happened four months ago I'd be dead or hospitalized by now.

Needless to say, my mood is not great, my outlook is not rosy, and I'm just trying to regroup.

Not a very positive update I know, but unfortunately it's where I am this month.


Well, things are better this month than they were last month. Everyone is healthy, and things are looking up.

I now weigh 172 lbs, which puts my BMI at 29.5, which means that I am no longer obese. THANK YOU, GOD!!! I have lost a total of 22 inches off my waist and hips, and I fit comfortably into a size 10/12 or a medium.

After I had my first kids, I never thought I would look good again. I still feel like I'm living out someone else's fantasy... I haven't internalized the fact that this is MY life, and that this is MY body.

My doc took my diabetes diagnosis off my chart, because my HgbA1c is 5.2. My heart rhythm is normal. My cholestorol is 132. My fibromyalgia is under control for the first time in years. I've gone from taking 8 meds a day to just one.

I can work out on the cardio machines at my fitness center for an hour or more, and I can RUN. Last month my 7 yr old son was trying to escape from me, and I sprinted after him and CAUGHT HIM. That's right, I CAUGHT HIM!!! He was soooo shocked, he didn't know what to do! This time last year, I would've given up and gone back in the house without even trying to get him back.

And get this: I AM NO LONGER THE JOLLY FAT FRIEND IN MY GROUP OF GIRLFRIENDS!!! That is so unbelievable to me. Of course, I would never draw attention to that fact among my girlfriends, but I had to say it to someone, and I know that I can say it here without it being misconstrued.

Life is so awesome.... and I'm still 32 lbs from goal! I can't even imagine what life will be like next winter when I'm a year out.

Could I BE any happier????????

24 LBS TO GOAL!!! Unbelievable! I went shopping with my 17 yo daughter last weekend and got some cute size 11 capris. They fit so nice that I'm going to go back and get another pair, along with a couple t-shirts, size medium! It still feels so weird to go shopping with my daughter and to be able to buy clothes in the same store! She bought a cute skirt and a short sleeved top, and asked me if I wanted to borrow them. At first I thought, "Is she crazy?" Then I remembered, "OH, WAIT.... it would totally fit!!!" Awesome.

I am just loving life right now.

Now, if only I could do something about all this extra skin... I told my hubby he could buy me a total body lift as my graduation gift next year! (Instead of a new car, ya know?)


So, I'm a little over 7 months out. I'm 13 lbs away from goal! I never thought this would be possible. I finally had to trade in my size 11 pants for a loose size 9... I haven't been smaller than a 14 since I got pregnant back in 1988! I weigh less than I did when I got married.

My health is great... I can walk for hours without getting winded or getting shin splints.

Last month my family and I went to Valleyfair and I had a blast! I rode every ride (except the water ones)... not only could I fit, but I didn't have any vertigo, which is a big reason I've stayed away from rides for the past few years. My doc wonders if my increasing weight was putting pressure on my brain stem, causing a large part of the neuro disease I've been struggling with for several years.

A couple weeks ago my hubby and I went to a benefit for an organization our best friend works for. It was a dressy event, so I went shopping for a dress. My 17 yr old daughter was with me. I tried on a beautiful sleeveless white silk dress with black roses on it, size 10... and my daughter said it was too big! She got me an 8, which I was sure I wouldn't be able to zip, but..... IT FIT PERFECTLY. So I got it, along with some patent leather sandals, a matching clutch purse, a simple black necklace, and a pair of earrings. I'm going to post a pic when I get one. Anyway, I felt like Cinderella at the ball! I was wearing a size 8, and I felt pretty! Last time I wore a size 8 I was 18 years old.

Here's my latest problem: the way men treat me. I catch them leering at me at the grocery store, making rude comments in the mall, etc. It's not the way I dress... I don't wear anything revealing or sleazy. Even men who have known me for years... suddenly they treat me differently. They stare at me, and the pleasant conversations we used to have now center on how I look. Why is this??? The husband of a dear friend of mine started talking to me in a very sexual, inappropriate way. I asked him how his wife would feel if she heard him talking that way to me. He stopped, but now I feel so uncomfortable around them. He never used to treat me that way.

I don't think I've changed. The only thing different about me is my appearance. I don't think I go around flaunting my sexuality or flirting, but men definitely treat me differently than they did 7 months ago.

My husband tells me that I just have to learn to live with it, but I don't want to. I don't like feeling like a piece of meat. Sure, it was flattering at first because it was a kind of attention I'd never received before, but now it just feels yucky. I guess there's nothing I can do about it, and that's depressing.

Things are not great with my hubby... I guess part of me felt like he'd be happier with me if I were thinner and better able to keep up with the housework, but that is not the case. No matter what I do, it's just not good enough. He always finds some reason to be disappointed in me. Then he gets even angrier because I don't want to be affectionate. Why would I want to let him touch me when all he does is yell at me or ignore me when he's home???

So, if you're reading this and are thinking about having wls, it may make your body healthier, but it won't heal your relationships or your soul.


Lemme say that again (ahem): I HAVE REACHED MY GOAL WEIGHT!!!!!!!!!

And after a little less than 9 months post-op... who'da thunk it? 140, baby! I just can't stop smiling, feel a little like crying, definitely dancing, and I am gonna celebrate tonight! Champagne toasts all around!!! Thank you, God!


I reached my goal weight a couple weeks ago, but apparently my body has decided that I'm not done yet. I've lost three more pounds. Six more pounds would put me in the Century Club! I guess all I can do is go with the flow and see what happens.

I tried on my Fat Jeans yesterday, and I could put both legs into one leg of the jeans. It was really something to see just how far I've come, and to realize that I am not the woman I was nine months ago... not physically, mentally, emotionally, or spiritually. In a lot of ways I feel like a butterfly that just emerged from her cocoon and I'm taking stock of the world around me and trying to figure out exactly what I want from life from here on out.

I'm not sure where this new leg of the journey is going to take me, but I'm excited about the possibilities.


Here I am, ten months out from surgery. I've lost a total of 97 lbs. I now weigh 134 lbs, and I wear a size 4/6 or a small.

I've never been this small, at least not as far as I can remember. A couple people have actually told me that I'm getting too thin... boney, even. My problem is that I really do not have much of a desire to eat, so I know I don't eat nearly enough. I try to eat small amounts of things that have more calories, but it's definitely not easy.

I've been working out more now that the kids are all back in school, so I know I've been building muscle, yet the pounds continue to fall off. My teenaged son told me that I have good definition, especially in my arms, but told me not to "bulk up" anymore, lest I end up looking like She-Hulk.

The whole body image thing is still really hard. The saggy skin really gets to me, especially when I can feel hard muscle underneath that is camouflaged by the extra skin. I can't wait until I can start seriously looking into plastics. I've been considering the Total Body Lift procedure... I figure, why do the a la carte thing and get several surgeries over the span of a year when I can go in and get one or two and be done? I definitely need a tummy tuck, and I need to get my boobs lifted and my arms fixed. Of course, my skin may snap back somewhat in the next few months, but probably not enough to make me stop wanting reconstructive surgery.

I have a close male friend who constantly tells me that I look beautiful, trim and sexy, but to be honest I have a hard time believing that. I've never felt beautiful. I am still an insecure fat chick inside, and I'm not sure that feeling will ever really go away.

I've really been dealing with addiction transferrence. Now that food holds no pleasure for me, I've been drinking too much and I've started smoking again. I know it's really bad for me, but I just can't help myself. At this point, I'm not sure I'm ready to get help for my addictions. Maybe sometime in the near future I will feel like enough is enough and be willing to surrender, but not today.


One year ago today I had my gastric bypass surgery and got a new lease on life.

One year ago today I weighed well over two hundred pounds. I had diabetes, heart problems, acid reflux disease, and fibromyalgia. I was on a myriad of medications, had to stick my fingers four times a day to check my blood sugar, was in constant pain, always exhausted, and could barely carry out the functions of daily life.

One year ago today my self-esteem was at an all-time low. I felt fat and ugly. I was ashamed of how I looked and ashamed of the lack of self-control that led to my weight problems. I didn't feel I had much to offer, and didn't think I deserved to be loved. I felt like a waste of space. My health problems added to my lack of confidence, because I couldn't do the things I wanted to do or needed to do because of my lack of energy, my pain, and the decline of my neurological functions.

Today I am at a normal weight for the first time in eighteen years. I can exercise, walk, run, dance, and do all the things I couldn't do a year ago. I am not tied down to my medicine cabinet, and now only take two medications for my neuro issues. My diabetes is gone, my heart is normal, I no longer have to worry that acid is burning a hole through my esophagus, and my fibromyalgia flare-ups are minor and few.

Today I can see myself as a woman who has a lot to offer to the world. I am deserving of love and respect. I am a better mother and a better friend than I was a year ago.

This year has not been easy. I've struggled with getting used to the lifestyle change that gastric bypass requires. I've struggled with my changing body image. I struggle with addiction transferrences. Some of my relationships have changed, and not all for the better. I've struggled with the need to redefine myself in this new, healthy body, and there have been times when I've lost sight of who I am and what I want out of life. I've taken risks I wouldn't have taken a year ago, and not all of them have been healthy or wise choices.

I've learned a few things this year. I've learned that there is much more to me than my appearance. I've learned that I cannot fix everything, and that there are some things and some people I just need to let go of. I have learned to love in a way I never knew I could. I've learned to be honest about my needs, wants and feelings, both with others and with myself. I've learned to take chances in life, because I could miss out on something wonderful if I am too afraid to try. I've learned that there can be strength in vulnerability. I've learned that I am on the threshold of something great, and that I have what it takes to step over that threshold with a new honesty and boldness.

I have lost some significant things because of the changes in me, but I have gained so much. Even though this first year after gastric bypass has been more difficult and more intense than I ever could have imagined, I would do it all again in a heartbeat. I have been given a rare opportunity to reinvent myself as a healthy, attractive, normal woman. I am a new creature, and my life can be whatever I am willing to make of it.

So wish me a happy surgi-versary, celebrate this new life with me, and keep trying to guess what I'm going to do next. Today the world is my oyster, baby.


DateWeightPounds LostTotal Pounds LostBMI














About Me
Crystal, MN
Surgery Date
Sep 06, 2005
Member Since

Friends 4