Next surgery update

Apr 15, 2009

Still waiting on all things to fall in place so I can get my next surgery done. Tri-Care denied the panniculectomy but approved the hernia repair. I am not going to be opened up twice so have had another consult. This time up at the Naval Base in Portsmouth, VA. My bariatric surgeon at Ft. Bragg was kind enough to put in the referral for me. The work done there is not cost free but it certainly is a lot cheaper than full fee civilian. This would mean a abdomnioplasty and a masteopecty at the same time in addition to the hernia repair if needed. The docs there are not entirely sure I really have a hernia. It may be just a tissue mass. I need a CAT to determine that for sure. There lies the catch. Need to get some one here to do the CAT as we ran out of time when we were in VA. The contrast stuff has to be drunk four hours before the CAT is done. We had to get back so my husband could go to work the next day. So...I tried to get Womack to do it. No go. They said have your Primary Care Giver do it who is a civilian. He said no but I pleaded and he is taking a look at the order I had for up in VA today and reconsidering. So...maybe I will get it done here after all. I hate to think of having to drive all the way to VA and spend a day up there for that test. It is 5 hours up and 5 back and I have to stay up there for the four hour wait after you drink the contrast fluid so it will be a very long day in addition to the added expense and bother. After the CAT all that remains is paying for the procedures and going on the waiting list. They are not sure just how long I will have to wait to have the surgeries. So...that is where I stand at this point.
     On a personal note I am feeling better than I have in over twenty years. Life is good. And...we have all of our family close by for a change. Our son-in-law is stationed at Bragg so we have the daughter and four grands here once again. Then their is the new grandson by our son and his wife. He is just 7 months old and oh so much fun. We haven't had a baby in the family for over 10 years so this is really a novelty for all. The other grand children are having such a good time with him as well. So this grandma is one happy camper these days and.....she can get down on the floor to play and get back up by herself. Couldn't have done that two years ago before bariatric surgery. God is so good. I have lost 156 lbs. now and am just 6 lbs. shy of my goal weight. I posted a new photo. What a change from the one taken in Alaska.
    Hope all of you are having a great journey.
                  Norma Jean


March 23, 2009 update

Mar 22, 2009

Can't believe it has been this long since I visited this site and bothered to write an update. This journey has been unbelievable. I am down 150 lbs. and pretty stable. Steady losses the entire time. Have been lucky and have not had a gain ever during my journey. I am ready for surgery to get rid of this sagging skin. Have already processed the paper work once to my insurance and been denied so it is in the appeal process. So...awaiting a second result. Hoping it will go through this time. I have had some other things done to improve my looks since surgery. Had an eye lid lift done so I can now see better and had 6 old crowns on teeth replaced that I had had for over 33 years. My dentist was just amazed that I had had them that long and all was well under their. The teeth were healthy so on with the new crowns and a new look. I bleached all the other teeth and had brighter crowns put on so my smile is nicer now. Still have a terrible over bite but can solve everything. Even with insurance the crowns and bleaching cost is three thousand dollars. I have no idea how people with no insurance make it. this point I have gone from a size 34 to a 14/16. God is so good. We have a new grandbaby. His name is Elijah James and he is 6 months old already. He is so yummy. I just can't get enough of him. And...if I want to get down on the floor and play...I can get up all by myself. Couldn't have done that two years ago before surgery.
Hope all of you out there are doing as well.
Love and Blessings to all.
Norma Jean

July 20, 2007 Update

Jul 19, 2007

This past weekend we went to Topsail Beach for the annual Button Reunion and I actually had enough nerve to don a bathing suit and join the rest down at the water. Life is good. 
I went for my post 6 month check up recently and had lost 83 lbs. since I started this journey. Can't wait to drop another 83 and get to goal however the body is already droopy so I do dread the surgery ahead of me to perk it up again. 
Really looking forward to next month as my daughter and grands are going to take a hop from Alaska and come and visit me. I am so homesick for them. 
Guess that is it for now except I feel great. I am on the slow track but as long as it keeps coming off I am happy.
Blessings to all,

Update Friday June 15th, 2007

Jun 14, 2007

I can't believe how late in June it is already. We have been so busy. With all these trips to NY the time has just flown by and here I am 5 months out already. Took off 10 lbs. this past month. I am moving slowly but steadily. Since I started this journey I have lost 80 lbs. and gone from a size 32 to a 22. Not bad for an old Grandma. My daughter is doing even better. She is in size 14 now. Wish I could see her.
For all of you not in NC we are into our beautiful summer weather. Lots of sunshine and late afternoon showers. Typical of this time of year. 
For those who have kept the prayers coming, don't stop now, my heart has been heavy with all the deaths in the family. Thanks for the blessings.

Adding Health Plex to the Mix

May 21, 2007

Here it is May 22nd and over a month since I last entered any information. I have finally joined Health Plex and am trying to get there several times a week. This past week I had numerous other appointments to deal with. It is that time of year for me to do the annual stuff again. Yuck. 
Then there is the family personal stuff we have been dealing with. My husbands mother passed in March and we went to NY to have her memorial service on the 23rd of April. His father was able to travel from Ohio and be there. The 22nd he celebrated his 90th birthday so we had a party on Sunday and a memorial service on Monday. How sad. It was not three weeks before my husbands father passed so now we are headed back to NY to have as memorial service for him. He was so heart broken about Mom he just did not have any will left. We were very fortunate to have the two of them for so long. Mom was 86 and Dad 90. You can't ask the Lord for more. Still it is a lot to take in such a short time. I am sad. I can't imagine how my husband must be feeling. He is such a quiet man about such things. If you read this pray for safe travel and peace of mind and heart. Norma

Weight Loss

Apr 05, 2007

I was looking at my records today and at five weeks out I had lost 27 lbs. I Only lost one more lb. before the plateau which lasted what seemed forever. Really it was several weeks. So now I have taken off 5 lbs. in two weeks. I was hoping when I broke the plateau to really see the lbs. melt but I guess it is going to be a slower process for me than for some. I am feeling good and sticking to the program. Wish I could have been this faithful to a weight loss program. Well anyway just needed to document.
Blessings to all who read this.

12 Weeks Out

Apr 04, 2007

     Finally on the minus side again. Had to change my routine to get there. Went to the nutritionist yesterday and had lost 4 more lbs. Yea. I feel better. 
     Saw my Surgeon this past week and my labs were great. Getting enough protein and my kidneys are functioning really well. Creatnin 1.2 Could not ask for better. 
     So...don't have to see the surgeon for two months and the nutritionist for three. It will be up to me to stay on track but I know I can do it. I have been really good about no sugar and measuring my food so I don't over eat. I am eating a balanced diet and tolerating different foods well.
     Clothing size is just crazy. For the first time in years I am going to wear a dress to Easter Sunday church. I bought a 24 down from a 32. How wonderful and what fun. And...I only paid 40 dollars for the dress and jacket that went with it. I am proud of that as I know it will not fit for long. 
     It is nice to begin to see the loss myself. When you are this big it takes awhile before you can look in the mirror and really tell you have taken off the weight. 
     For those who have been praying for me. Keep it up. I can use all the help I can get and thanks for your support.
Norma Jean

8 Weeks Out

Mar 05, 2007

Here I am 8 weeks out and still at the same weight. I went to the nutritionist last week for some advice and I am doing everything right. Actually I am getting around 80 grams of protein a day which is right on target. Can't complain about that. So....what is up with the standstill. She says my body has gotten used to my routine so this week I am joining Health Plex to see if I can jolt it into dropping some pounds again. Sure seems crazy to be taking in around 600-800 calories a day and not getting rid of any more weight. I have been stuck for 4 weeks now. Too long. Well wish me luck. Just seems my body is up to it's old tricks.

6 Weeks out

Feb 16, 2007

   Here I am at 6 weeks out and at nearly the same weight as at 4 weeks. My daughter says not to worry about it. It happens. Seems strange to get stuck so early in the game but I will just have to wait it out. I have to see a loss sooner or later no more than I eat and I don't see water retention in my body so it will happen. 
   Life is getting better and better. I feel good. Went out to a ladies church dinner this past week with my daughter-in-law and had a wonderful time. First time to eat in public and it went real well. They served a buffet and there was baked chicken so I had that and a bite of rice pilaf. And...just a tiny piece of the crust of a yeast roll. It tasted soooo good. Haden't had any bread. I am eating mostly protein. 
  As always thanks for all the prayers.

4 Weeks Out

Feb 07, 2007

   Went to my first post op support group meeting at Womack Army Hospital last night. Very informative. The group was a mix of 10 days out to 18 months out. My Dr. was there to answer any questions we had. After that a nutritionist gave a talk. Then one of the nurses had freebies from this sites store. Samples to take home and try. We finished up with going to the free clothes closet if you wanted to. All of this in about an hour and 15 minutes. I was surprised to see so many men there. At the pre op support group meetings you don't see very many. 
   As for how I am doing. I am down 24 lbs. and feeling good. My energy level is picking up a bit. Pain level is down to a 1 on a scale of 1-10. Can't complain about that. Still fighting trying to get in enough protein. 
   Hope all who might read this are doing as well. God Bless you all. Norma

About Me
Spring Lake, NC
Surgery Date
Apr 18, 2006
Member Since

Friends 18

Latest Blog 14
July 20, 2007 Update
Update Friday June 15th, 2007
Adding Health Plex to the Mix
Weight Loss
12 Weeks Out
8 Weeks Out
6 Weeks out
4 Weeks Out