Checking in

Jul 29, 2011

It's been a while so I thought I'd post a quick update.

I'm still going to the gym but haven't lost any weight.  I'm ok with that as my clothes are fitting better and I definitely notice muscle tone where there was none before!

My husband and I went to Napa Valley in May.  I cannot even list all the things we did that I could not have done a few years ago.  Walking through an airport carrying bags, fitting in a seat (granted we used airline miles and were in first class!), walking around vineyards, dressing up pretty-like and going on the Wine Train...and so on and so forth.  It was fantastic!

Anyhow -- life is good.  I'm not perfect but I've maintained for over a year now.  No complaints from me.

Finally exercising!

Mar 06, 2011

At exactly 8 weeks post-op from my plastics, I sucked it up and went to Planet Fitness.  I'd never worked out properly in my LIFE...the closest I'd ever come is PE class in school.

Well..I did it!

I've been going 3x a week and I love it!  I got my free personal training consultation and she helped me figure out what equipment to use and the proper way to use it.  I was so flippin' sore for the first 5-6 days but now it's a pleasant vague ache.  :)

I do 45 mins~ of resistance training (dumbells, various machines, mat work, etc) and end with 25 mins on the treadmill. 

I never in a MILLION years could have imagined I'd be doing squats and leg presses.  Reverse crunches?  Me?!  Put the crack pipe DOWN!  

I've pretty much maintained the same weight since last summer (losing a few lbs post-op).  I would really love to tone up and lose some more.  My husband and I are also talking about starting a family and I know if I go into pregnancy in the best shape of my life, it will be a lot easier on my body (and ideally, getting the weight off will be easier too). 

A month post-plastics

Feb 02, 2011

I had my brachioplasty and inner thigh lift done on Dec 29th.  It was a bit of a hassle since I now live in SW CT and my surgery was done at Mass General.  I've had to make a handful of trips back up there (170 miles or so) but I think it was worth it since MGH is where I've had ALL my surgeries and my plastic surgeon came highly recommended by my RNY surgeon!

The surgery lasted 6.5 hours.  I had lipo done, too.  My surgeon said she removed approximately 950 cc of fat from each thigh and 450 cc from each arm.  The amount of skin?  I don't have the numbers.  She said skin weighs surprisingly little so the amount is negligible (even though there was a LOT!)  My incisions go from my elbow, under the arm and in a T at my arm-pit.  My leg incisions go from a few inches past my knee, up, on either side of my girly parts and almost to my (moved due to panni lower than norma!) belly button.

Recovery was rough.  I was in MGH for one night.  I was tempted to stay an extra night but a: I self paid and it would cost $1,000 a night and b: I just wanted to go HOME.  I was sore and the thought of going up and down the stairs repeatedly to my bedroom made me wanna cry so I slept on the couch for the first few nights.  My husband was a great help!

I'm not gonna lie.  This surgery hurt.  It still does!  I greatly underestimated the recovery time.  There are still times when I'm wincing in pain.  I don't have the full range of motion back yet.  However, things are healing BEAUTIFULLY.  I've been able to resume doing little things around the house -- laundry (hubby carries it up and down stairs though!), baking, emptying the dishwasher (but not putting things on the top shelves..hurts!) -- since the start of week 3. 

I'm wearing compression garments on my arms (sleeves) and spanx for lower body support.  I was using a medical grade lower body compression garment but it KILLED me so my doc said I could switch.  I was also wearing compression stockings on my legs but because of the lymphedema, they were so tight, it was making my legs bleed,..those were ditched after a week w/ my surgeons blessing.

All in all, I'm very happy!  Will I be wearing shorts this summer?  No...I don't have the confidence for that -- but clothes fit me SO much better!  I'm feeling a lot better about my naked self.  Tank tops?  A very distinct possibility!  My arms aren't skinny -- shoot, I still weigh 244 lbs and have lost 358 lbs!  But they're beautifully proportioned now and I no longer risk knocking someone out w/ my extra skin when I wave my arms.  heh

Busy busy!

Nov 02, 2010

Well, I'm moving to CT to my bf's townhouse on 11/14.  We're getting married 12/11.  Trying to deal with the logistics of a move and a wedding at the same time is stressing me out!

The end results are very much worth it.  I just need to breath and get through the chaos for a bit.  Things will inevitably settle down and be fantastic. :)

I went to see a plastic surgeon that my surgeon recommended to me.  I had seen her last July right after the gtube came out and I was in the midst of...well...everything.  (see previous entries for details!)  I was pissed at her comments because it wasn't what I wanted to hear....I thought she was horrible.

This time?  She was great.  My mental and physical state at the time had totally skewed my view of her.  To make a long story short, I'm having a brachioplasty and thigh lift on Dec 29th.   I've lost 350 lbs and have so much extra skin it's not funny.  She said it's gonna make a huge difference...and I know it will.  Jeans are gonna fit me so much better! 

Eventually I'll have an abdominoplasty, LBL, and breast lift and/or implants.  I'm not worried about those at this point because my soon to be husband and I want to start a family within the next 12-18 mos.  Having plastics pre-baby is just dumb.

The thing I'm probably most stressed out about is having to find a new therapist and psychiatrist.  My therapist has helped me so MUCH...gotten me through the darkest times in my life...

The thought of having to find someone I can even remotely be comfortable scares me. 

Stay tuned, I guess.

Two years out!

Oct 14, 2010

Well, I had my two year post-op visit yesterday.  My labs are good!  My Vit D was a hair low but better than it's ever been (I picked up 2000 iu of dry D to take daily...see if that does the trick).  My iron is well within normal ranges but is trending downward so my doc wants me to take supplements. 

If that's all that's wrong with me at this point, I'll happily take it!

My life couldn't be any different now than it was 2 years ago.  I'm actually about to get married to a wonderful man and move to CT with him.  Life is good. :)  The wedding is Dec 11!

All the drama, all the problems, all the hospitalizations - both physical and otherwise...they've all been worth it.  I would have the surgery again in a heart beat. 

My surgeon has been following me very closely.  I've been exchanging daily emails with her for over a year now with my food for the day.  She said she's been learning a lot and is has asked if it would be alright to perhaps one day publish my diet in hopes of helping other post-ops.  It's an awesome feeling knowing I could potentially help others make the transition from as awful as things were to as good as they are now. 

That's about it.  I'm still reading every few days but don't really participate here much anymore.  This site has been an invaluable tool for me.

Still chugging along

Jul 06, 2010

Just wanted to check in so I'd have something to look back on later. :)

I'm down to 232 lbs from my high of 601 lbs.  That's insane

I remember this time last year, I was just barely able to move around, in physical therapy, in a pretty fragile mental state, and still 400 lbs~.  Things were pretty freaking miserable, tbh.  I was thrilled that I'd lost about 200 lbs but was wondering at what cost. 

Things couldn't be any better right now..or any further from that.  I'm involved with a man that I truly love, who loves me not only for who I am but what and where I've been.  We've gone to Fenway and Camden yards, walked on beaches, attending a wedding (and I wore a freakin DRESS!), and just...normal stuff that normal people do!  I can take trains, walk up stairs, walk on sand, wear a freakin DRESS(!!!), meet people and not be ashamed....

My life is..well..a life.

It's quite amazing.
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19 months post-op

May 14, 2010

Been a while -- thought I'd update so I could look back on my journey later.

I'm a week post-op from an abdominal mass removal.  My panniculectomy incision had some healing issues and I ended up with a large necrotic fat/skin lump in the middle of my stomach.  It could be quite painful at times.  My wonderful surgeon documented everything and was able to get my insurance to cover excision and scar revision.   The incision is 16" (I told you it was a large lump!) and I have one drain in place. 

During the surgery, I also had an exploratory laproscopy to try to figure out what was causing some random acute pain attacks that I'd had.  Unfortunately(?), my doctor didn't see anything abnormal.

It's amazing how much easier it is to recover from surgery when you're 300 lbs lighter! :)


First plastics

Dec 09, 2009

Had my panniculectomy on Nov 4th.  It went well - my doctor (same surgeon that did my RNY) removed 37 lbs of skin.  It's amazing to think about.  I was in the hospital for a week and went home feeling much better than expected.

All was great for 3.5 weeks then all of a sudden the pain started to flare up BIG time and when I went to see my surgeon, she sent me to the hospital where I stayed for a week with a severe wound infection.  After having a procedure done to aspirate some pockets of fluid, lots of antibiotics and some time, I got sent home with a PICC line and more antibiotics.

That's where I'm at now.

I've not really left my house much since my surgery.  Due to pain meds, pain, discomfort...I haven't driven.  The only time I go out are for doctors appts and the occasional trip out with my mother.  It's been really hard and I can feel my depression sneaking up on me.  It starts with me being bitter at having to take my meds and really wishing I could just chuck them all in the trash can.  I think it's many things - the holidays, the bleak, dreary Dec. days, being in the house so much, being alone so much, etc etc.  I just really hope I can stay out of the hospital.

1 year out

Oct 20, 2009

My 1 year surgiversary passed on Oct 14th.  So much has changed for me in the past year.  The main thing being that I'm down 201 lbs!  I just went for my one year labs this morning so when I get the results, I'll have more to write about. 

The past few months, I've been slipping with my water intake as well as getting too lax when it comes to carbs.  Tsk tsk.  It shows in the scale. When I weighed today for the first time in a month, I was only down 2 lbs.  In many ways, it is a wake up call.  The honeymoon is over...time to start being more vigilent about what goes into my mouth and get back to my losing ways.

One major change I plan on making is actually...exercising.  Up to this point, I haven't been.  I am definitely more active but haven't exercised a bit since my physical therapy stopped back in early August.  (Twas to get back from being deconditioned from being in the hospital so long.)  Late last week I ordered resistance bands and a stationary bike.  While it may not be much, as a former 600 pounder, this is more exercise than I could have dreamed of a year ago.  I hope it gets me moving in the right direction. 

Panniculectomy scheduled (finally!)

Aug 01, 2009

Back in February, my surgeon told me that in the later summer or fall, she'd take my pannis off.  She said that it would just have to go since it was going to be a burden.  At the time she estimated it to weigh over 60 lbs.  Back in late April, before we knew I'd be in the hospital for 42 days and have a gtube for 7 weeks, she told me it would be August.  Well...because of all that happened, I'm finally scheduled for November 4, 2009. 

She estimates that she'll take at least 40 lbs of skin/tissue off.  That's craziness! 

A couple of weeks ago, I had a consult with a plastic surgeon.  Dr. Pratt wanted to find out if I should have a lower body lift.  The plastic surgeon said that because of my recent health issues, she didnt feel comfortable doing ANY procedure and the chances of me having complications (mostly wound not healing issues) is near 100%.  

Thanks for the vote of confidence, lady!

I'm really looking forward to it happening.  I know the recovery is gonna be a bitch.  I know my mom is gonna have to take my kitty for 2 months or so while I recover (he likes to lay on my abdomen while I'm in bed).  I know I probably will have healing issues...and that because I have so much weight to lose, I may have to have this done again down the road.

But...40+ lbs will be gone from my body.  I will be able to walk up stairs for the first time in 3-4 years.  I will be able to have my nephew sit on my actual lap!  Clothes will be so much more fun to try on/wear. 

I cannot wait!

About Me
Surgery Date
Feb 21, 2006
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