Thursday, December 31, 2009


Had scrambled eggs for dinner tonight. They were awesome! I chewed and chewed and it went down great. I also had some scalloped potatoes, very moist and it also went down quite well. It feels so great to have moved into the next phase. I am excited to try a few more things in this next week. Yippee for mushies!

Shoulder Pain?

Anybody else had this phenomenon of shoulder pain. I have been reading several lapband resources that say it is rather common and has to do with referred pain from the phrenic nerve by the diaphragm. Anyway, I am feeling quite a bit of pain today and meds don't seem to help much. From what I read it's pretty normal. Anybody else dealt with this?

I should clarify...this isn't the post-op pain from the gas used during surgery, this happens when I eat. Did I eat too much?

Goodbye Soup...Hello Mushies!

I officially begin Phase 2 today of my post-op diet today! As the Soup Nazi would soup for you! I am done with soup for a while, except for after fills of course. Today for lunch I had some ham salad and cottage cheese, it was delicious! It was so nice to be able to chew again. Eating without liquids is a bit of a challenge, as I am so used to swigging liquids that it is hard not to do it. Just another habit to break.

I am also unsure about eating enough but not too much. My dietitian talked about eating until you are full and then stopping. I have yet to know what full, but not too full feels like. I have also been tracking my calories, and I think I am in the right ball park around 1200 calories per day. But my dietitian also said that eventually the goal is to not track calories, instead you are better off listening to the clues your body gives you. So I am still trying to figure all this out. I am so afraid of having too much that I might be having too little. It's a fine line between the two. Tonight I am going to try some scrambled eggs and I am so looking forward to some new choices for the next two weeks before transitioning to Phase 3, solid foods!

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

New Number...Again!

Wow, this is really going quickly...maybe too fast? (Who would think that would be a problem?) I saw a glimpse of 269 on the scale this morning. I am eating the suggested amount of calories, so I don't think I am skimping too much. I am not hungry and feel satisfied so I guess that's good. I suppose my metabolism is catching on to the fact that there isn't more food coming in and took a look around and said..."Hey, lets use all this fat for energy instead!" I am still working on getting the right amount of protein every day, but I am getting closer to my daily goal all the time.

On another subject, my sleep has been improving the last few days. I am still tossing and turning a bit at night, but at least I am not up at 4:30 AM like I was some days. Actually slept until 6:00 AM this morning, that is an improvement. Well, this year is almost done and I am ready to start the New Year completly fresh!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Follow Up with Doc

I have been noticing one of my wounds was not healing as well as the rest, and the more I looked at it I realized that there was a little piece of string or bandage or something glued into it. I tried to pick it out with a tweezers but didn't want to tear anything. So just to be safe I am going to the local clinic today to have a professional dig around in it. I don't think anything was sutured, I think I was all super glued so I don't know if it something that belongs there or not. Anyway, I figured that before it festered I would have someone take a look at it. So I am sneaking away from work for a little while this afternoon to take care of that.

Update: I had some sutures snipped today. I didn't know I had any! Apparently two of the holes I had were sutured rather than glued and they were poking out a bit. I didn't see my regular PCP, but instead a med student at the clinic got to clip them a bit so that wounds could heal a little better. Everything seems fine for now, and I will see my surgeon again in late January. I was happy to see that I had lost about 12 pounds since my last doctor visit--a little different from my records since I am fully clothed at the office.

Monday, December 28, 2009

New Number and an NSV

Breaking tradition from previous holidays, I am pleased to say I lost another 2 pounds this week, so I am down to 270 on the scale this morning. I am so happy to see it is still dropping. I am going to celebrate every pound, because I know there will be plateaus and gains, ups and downs. I am ready to creep right into the 260's already! That's amazing. I am down a total of 33 pounds so far, 15 pounds in the month of December alone. I am really surprised at how quickly I have lost weight and for the most part I have not felt hungry or deprived.

Here's my NSV. My sister made fun of me yesterday saying my pants were really baggy. I may be ready to give up that pair of jeans, as my size begins to shrink. This morning I put on a pair of pants (size 24) that was always really tight and they fit just right today. Awesome!

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Cheated a Little

We celebrated a second, snow delayed Christmas with family today. Again, with all the favorite holiday foods. It was hard not to over-do. I will have to go back to my full liquid diet again until I am actually supposed to move into Phase 2 of my diet on Thursday of this week. I had my splurge, now it's time to behave again. In some ways, I was just testing my new plumbing. I tolerated everything pretty well, but probably shouldn't test it much more for a while and let myself heal well this next week and continue to follow the plan until my first fill. It's a lot of rules to follow and I really think that this was a good test of what I will have to deal with in the next weeks and months to come. So much to learn! It's hard to know what "normal" is now and as I continue to move through my phases and what it will be like after fills.

Haven't Seen a Scale in Days

I've been away from home for several days, so I have no idea what the scale might say. I have been trying a few new foods here and there, but have still been pretty good on calorie restriction overall. I am curious to go home and see if the scale moved, or if it just stayed in the same place. My family is celebrating Christmas today, a few days late because of the snow storm. So I am sure I will be tempted to try a few semi-solids again. I am finding that I can't have tempting foods around. If I only have good choices around I know I can stick to my new lifestyle. Just another lesson to learn...I have to live my own life and not be worried about what other people are eating. Just a reminder to keep the big picture in my, I choose this to change my life. As I have heard from many people before...nothing tastes as good as skinny feels!

Friday, December 25, 2009

Enjoyed Some Holiday Foods

Well, I was about a week ahead of schedule, but I decided to try some "real" food for Christmas dinner. Things went pretty good, didn't eat too much and was able to eat them without any trouble. I will say that I had some oatmeal this morning and that did not feel so good. I really felt a tight, slightly painful sensation after I got done eating. So oatmeal may not be a good thing to eat, may have to keep track of those foods that just don't sit too well. Otherwise, I was SO excited to be able to eat some potatoes, yams and a little bit of ham, chopped up and chewed up very well. It was nice to know that the system still works. In a way I was a little afraid to try more solid foods as I just don't know how my body will react to anything. Just a whole new learning experience.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas everyone! I have given myself an awesome Christmas present this year! I am excited to see what changes 2010 will bring. I am doing well, healing and getting used to a new way of eating. It has been a little bit of a challenge to deal with the temptations of lots of holiday foods around, but my will power is strong and I just keep filling my belly with all sorts of good foods that are allowed on Phase 1 of my diet. It is definitely mind over matter, just goes to show that if you don't have those temptations around you aren't tempted by them. So filling my fridge and cupboards with good choices is a very necessary step to a good life.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Wonderful Lazy Day Today!

Today will be a wonderful day spent with my mom and brother. I have my most comfy clothes on and plan to do absoluetely nothing--well except eat and drink all day on schedule. Feeling really good, lost another pound today! I am so excited to see the pounds just slip away. I am thinking it will slow down in the future, but for now I will take every one I get. Now my next challenge is to really start working on my protein intake. I know I need to start tracking that better. Well, waiting for some laundry to dry and then I am off to my brother's house. Have a wonderful Christmas everyone!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Impending Snow Storm Changes Plans

My surgeon's office called this morning, asking if I still planned on coming to Sioux Falls, since there is a major winter storm headed for the area. Well after some phone calls and decision making, my brother and I decided it would be smart to postpone the trip. So now my next appointment will be later in January for my first fill instead. Everything seems to be healing well and I am feeling good with the exception of some slight shoulder pain, the nurse and I decided I would be OK to skip the appointment. She did say I could visit my PCP, but I think that since everything seems to be healing quite well, I may skip that as well, as I really don't think they would tell me anything new. In preparing for the snow storm, we went on a grocery run and stocked up on soup and other liquids so that I would be all ready to just snuggle in for a few days.

New Number Again!

This one was a quicky, so I hope it sticks. Drum roll please...273! That means that the number on the scale today is 30 pounds less than my high of 303 this summer. Woo hoo!

I am feeling good, just a little shoulder pain so I am still on a little ibuprofen, but I am trying to wean myself off that slowly. I am headed to Sioux Falls later today in preparation for my follow up appointment with my surgeon on Wednesday. I am staying overnight with a good friend and I am looking forward to our time together.

Still struggling with sleep a little bit, but it is actually finally back to way it was prior to surgery, so I guess that is OK. One of the meds I take has been waking me up between 4:30-5:00 AM since about September. I am not groggy or tired during the day, so it isn't bothersome that way. It just sucks to be awake so early every single day.

Monday, December 21, 2009

More Goodies!

I got another card today from a co-worker, Darah and a surprise gift from a good friend. My friend Karen sent me a little care package including a card, a Christmas story from our past and a cute little copper plaque that says...With courage greater than your fear, jump into the unknown and you will fly. sweet, made me tear up a bit. So nice to know that people care!

New Number!

Scale said 274 this morning! Woo hoo! That means that I am in single digits to meet my goal weight of 175--just 99 pounds to go! So far I am down 29 pounds from my high of 303 earlier in 2009. I am anxious to watch the pounds continue to melt away, and I am also aware that sometime in the future I will stall and plateau. That's OK, as long as I know that my life is improving in a thousand different ways.

Gotta celebrate the successes when you can!


Well, good news! After I stopped taking that metoclopramide I had a much better day and night. I was able to sit still and I stayed up until 10:00 PM and slept through the night until 4:30 AM. That's an improvement! The 4:30 thing has gotten to be a pretty normal thing lately because of my other med, so this was a near normal night. I still wish I could sleep until at least 6:00 or 7:00, but I will take what I can get. Perhaps a little nap later!

So since I was up I had some breakfast and popped a few pills. I have been having a little shoulder pain, which apparently is from the gas added during the procedure. I was trying to wean myself off the ibuprofen, as my belly doesn't really hurt, but then the shoulder pain became more prominent, so I am back on it. I am also lying in the position they suggested; butt in the air to help the gas go the opposite direction. Rather interesting, think of it like a yoga position, LOL.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Like Night and Day

Well, I skipped my final two doses of the medicine that was driving me crazy. I feel like a completely different person this afternoon. I actually had the patience to help my brother decorate gingerbread cookies for several hours this afternoon. Although it was odd not to take a bite of cookie, I must admit I did lick the frosting off my finger a time or two. Even now, just sitting in my chair this afternoon I feel like I am so much more calm.

Sort of makes me mad that either the docs or the pharmacist wouldn't think about that drug interaction, I found the information readily available on several trusted websites. Oh well, guess it goes to show that you need to listen to your own body, you know best when something doesn't feel right. Perhaps I will actually get a decent night's sleep tonight. I'd do anything to sleep in until 7:00 or 8:00 AM.

Medication Side Effect

I think I figured out the whole restless feeling. I looked up the common side effects of one of the medications I have been taking the last few days, called metoclopramide or Reglan. It's prescribed to stimulate your bowel, but apparently several of the side effects include restless leg type symptoms, irritability restlessness and anxiousness. I think I may not finish the last two pills that I was supposed to take today. I just hate that feeling. Hope that will help things, if not I suppose I will have to figure out what else may cause it. I literally can't sit still for more than 15-20 minutes. Hope that feeling goes away soon.

Also found a recommendation on the Mayo Clinic website about not using metoclopramide in conjunction with one of my other medications, escitalopram. I think perhaps these two were working together to give me that crazy feeling of not being able to sit still.

More Screwed Up Sleep

Sigh...another night of messed up sleep patterns. I was so tired I went to sleep at 7:30 PM, so now I am wide awake at 1:00 AM. Can't seem to find a happy medium. I hope I can get this figured out soon, this sucks. I was going to try really hard to stay up until at least 10:00 PM, but that was impossible. Then I tried to negotiate with myself to stay awake until 9:00 PM. That didn't work either. So here I am in the middle of the night.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Nice Visit from a Co-Worker and Flowers

Had a nice visit from one of my co-workers, Ruth today. She delivered flowers from my work crew along with a gift certificate from a coffee house here in town. She chose a beautiful Christmas centerpiece that will look great on our holiday table next week. I feel so loved! It's hard sometimes to feel appreciated and worth someone's love and caring and it's always a nice lesson to learn to accept kindness from others. :)

Went for a Walk

Walk, walk, walk is what I have heard from lots of lap band patients and the docs. I couldn't agree more. I feel better when I am active and walking around. I have this overwhelming urge to fidget. It's better than it was the other day, but it's still rather annoying. I just get this feeling I like I can't sit still or find a comfortable position for more than about 15 minutes. Must be my body telling me something, like get up a move.

Otherwise, each day I am feeling a little better, like things are healing well. I am making small improvements each day. As of today, I am on Phase One of my diet, which means that I can have a full liquid diet. I think that as I can eat more my energy level will improve, even though it is a very low calorie diet. I am glad the surgeon suggests that you do the liquid diet before hand, as it really helps you to feel normal about your eating now. That was you don't have to go cold turkey on food. Feeling pretty good, hope that trend continues!

Sleep Patterns Are All Messed Up

My sleep patterns are all screwy lately. Last night I was so tired I went to bed before 8 PM, woke up at midnight then I have been awake since 4:00 AM. I think part of it is my meds, but whatever it is, I wish that I could just a have a normal night's sleep. There isn't much to do at 4:00 AM. Not much on TV and no one to talk to at that hour. Makes for a long day.

Other than that, I am feeling a little better each day. I was even brave enough to go for a small outing yesterday. But that was plenty, I was worn out by the end of the day. Incisions seem to be healing OK. I have an appointment next week to check on things, hopefully it will all go OK.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Great Care at the Hospital

I got some really great care from my nurse at the hospital this past week. In particular, there was a nurse named Kari that was there during the two days of my stay. She was so caring and really did everything she could to make me feel better. Just wanted to make sure I remembered her name here. I also had a guy named Paul who was the over night guy, he was OK, but he was no Kari!

I also had a great gal who was a patient care assistant, I think her name was Jen. But she helped give me a sponge bath and took care of all sorts of jobs I wouldn't wish on anyone. Great, caring people!

Shout Outs to My Peeps

I have such great people in my life. I am so thankful for them! I got several calls, texts, e-mails, cards, flowers and gifts from some really great people in my life. I don't want to miss anyone, but I do want to take a moment to offer the following shout outs:
  • My brother, Steve: For driving me to Sioux Falls and taking extra good care of me for a few days, including a stool to step into the truck, being a crazy blog videographer and overall keeping my spirits high. What a sweetie!
  • To my sisters, Janice and her family for phone calls, e-mails, prayers and hugs.
  • To my sister Susan for e-mails and texts and lots of prayers and well wishes.
  • To my mom for phone calls, prayers and good thoughts.
  • To my friend Lavonne, for a visit in the hospital, phone calls, a great gift from Barnes and Noble and for just listening to me over these past months.
  • To my friend Patti, for lots of good wishes, lots of hours listening to my hopes and fears and for the beautiful flowers she sent.
  • To my friend Karen for the e-mail she sent via the hospital website and for lots of chats and e-mails.
  • To my many co-workers and friends for cards, e-mails, prayers and good thoughts.

I am so blessed. I know I am probably forgetting a thousand people, but I just want to say a huge thanks to everyone, who helped me get through all this. Last but not least, thanks to my blog readers for lots of good thoughts too!

Belly Pictures...Caution May be TMI!

This may be too much information for some, but I thought I would include some belly pictures of my incisions. There are no staples, just super glue! There are a total of four small incisions, sort of at north, west east and south and then the large incision where the port was placed.

You can see the port incision and two of the smaller incisions. The small red dot to the left of the port incision is a small blood blister from wrangling around during surgery apparently. So there's my gut. Everything seems to be healing as it should be so far. The port incision is pretty lumpy, not very smooth. I suppose there will be a small scar there, but the others will disappear easily. All in all, things are going OK so far.

Feeling a Little Restless

Not sure why, but I am feeling very restless today. Like I can't sit still for more than a few minutes. Not sure what is causing that. I feel a little better after I eat something so it makes me wonder if I am just getting a little hypoglycemic. Been trying to eat a very regular intervals and even added in a little yogurt today since I felt like I needed something in my belly. I had broth at breakfast (I know that's weird) and also at lunch and that seemed to help a bit with the "fidgettyness". Hope that goes away soon.

Went to therapy, but cut it really short today, only about a half hour. But that's a good thing, since I just had good things to say. Won't have another appointment until January, so that will be OK. I think I am nearly ready to wean myself of that in the next month or two. Things are headed in the right direction in my life...I hope.

Day 3 of Recovery

Feeling a little better today, still a little sore but getting less tender each day. Recovery sucks a little, I am feeling a little restless and wanting to be able to get back to normal life. But I know this is an important time to just spend time taking care of me. I am going on a very short outing today for my therapy appointment and maybe a very quick trip to the grocery store if I feel up to it. More than anything, I think I am just bored and needing something to do to help the hours pass by more quickly. Not much else to report, just following the rules and trying to feel better.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Plumbing Problems...Not Me, My House

OK, here's a problem I did not need today! I was using the bathroom, a pretty frequent experience around here. I accidentally knocked my hair dryer off the vanity, and all the sudden all hell broke loose! A pipe apparently came undone inside the wall and away from the shut off valve. Good grief! I don't need this, so I had to "run" downstairs to the main shut off valve to the house, eek!!! Called my brother, called my landlord, called a plumber. So now I am waiting patiently for the plumber to come over. This is not a good situation for me today! If ever I needed the plumbing to be in good working condition, this is the day! Calgon, take me away!

The Surgery Update

Surgery is done and I am back home recuperating! I am feeling pretty well today, just a few aches here and there. We arrived in Sioux Falls on Monday night about 5:00 PM and I started my magnesium citrate...that was not much fun! My brother went out for supper and shopping and left me to take care of business, LOL. I brought a few creature comforts; a candle and matches and some moist wipes. Those helped for a while, but eventually the process was pretty tiring.

On Tuesday, we were up at the crack of dawn and at the hospital for check-in by 5:00 AM. I was taken to the admitting area, and my brother got to come along. I put on a gown, got an IV and got ready to be taken back to the OR. I remember laying on the table, a flurry of activity of sticky things being put on and that was about it, and I was out like a light. Next thing I knew I was awake in the post op unit and being moved to my room. Felt pretty sore and groggy, and that lasted most of the day. Tuesday night I got a bad case of the queasies, and it took a long time to get that under control.

Wednesday was much better. I had to do a swallow test in the morning and passed with flying colors. I was able to try a few liquids by noon. I continued to get better throughout the day and was released at about 5:00 PM. It was a long drive home, but we stopped several times for walks.

Today I am doing well, just handling pain with a little liquid motrin. All in all, I feel OK, just sore and hard to find a comfortable spot to sit for any length of time, but I am sure that will improve. I have been eating and drinking on schedule today with lots of juice, jello, water and some broth for lunch. So far so good!

Surgery Pictures

Here are a few surgery pictures from my camera phone. They aren't the best quality, but thanks to my "videographer", my brother Steve, taking pictures!

Monday, December 14, 2009

Travel Day!

My brother, aka my chauffeur and I leave for Sioux Falls today! This is it! We are leaving at noon. I am spending the morning packing my things and trying not to freak out, LOL! Today I am on clear liquids only and this afternoon at 4:00 PM I start drinking the magnesium citrate. I hope I have everything all figured out. No turning back now.

December 15th will be like a new birthday, a new lease on life. Everything will change from here and I hope I have prepared myself both mentally and physically for the changes to come. I have battled my weight much of my childhood and all of my adult life up until now. If I am successful, I will change my life 180 degrees. I am ready to find the new me.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

New Number and Patience

Saw a new number this morning on the scale...277. Woo hoo! I am trying to be patient today, it's hard to find ways to pass the time. Tomorrow morning I will pack my bags and my brother and I are leaving around Noon for Sioux Falls. My mind is just racing with all sorts of thoughts--mostly good. Just getting impatient is all. I am trying to keep my expectations realistic and I am trying to go into this with a very positive attitude. I think that will help in handling the pain and helping me heal. I think that there is a lot to be said for your mental state and doing things from your brain to help you manage pain such as deep breathing, meditation and relaxation techniques. Of course I will gladly accept pain meds too!

I am hoping to take some pictures along the way to add to my blog and help me remember the experience. Just a few more hours to wait...

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Need a Project Today

I am going to need some projects to keep me busy this weekend! I have so much nervous energy that I think I'm going to burst. I do need to clean the house in preparation for Christmas guests. I wake up so early anymore that it makes for a long day if I don't have something productive to do. It's 7:15 AM and I have already had breakfast, done the dishes and I am on my second load of laundry! That's ridiculous. At this pace, I will run out of things to do by mid-morning. I think I need to find some ways to relax and quiet my mind. Well, better go find some projects to do!

Friday, December 11, 2009

Soon-To-Be Former Fat Girl

Crazy! I can't believe I am just days away from a brand new life! I am feeling rather introspective tonight, thinking back on my 25+ years as the fat girl. I think it's going to take a while to make the inside and the outside mesh together. I am really ready for this. I don't feel nervous, I really feel like I am making the right decision. I have done everything I can do to prepare for this and I feel at such peace with my decision. I am so anxious to see some results and to feel my life really changing. I am ready to shed myself of the fat girl once and for all.

Thursday, December 10, 2009


I am officially off work for a while! Technically I have a staff meeting/Christmas party tomorrow, but that hardly counts as work. Then I have taken a week of sick leave and will likely take a few more days of a mix of annual leave and sick leave before Christmas. I am accompanying my brother to one of his doctor appointments in Rochester, so those days off were planned quite some time ago. So I get a long recouperative period.

I spent some time today organizing all my papers. It was getting to be quite a stack of bills, letters, instructions and such and I decided to put it all into a little accordian file. I have so many things to keep straight, I think that will really help me. I stopped at the drug store to pick up my bottle of magnesium citrate...the bottle says it's "the sparkling laxative" in a lovely lemon flavor, LOL. That will be quite an adventure I am sure. Gotta start drinking that by 4:00 PM on Monday as part of my prep for surgery.

New Number and Another NSV!

Woo hoo! I saw a new number on the scale...drum roll please...278! I met my goal of being in the 270's before surgery. Yippee! I also found some old clothes in my closet that I stopped wearing because they were too tight and they fit today. I am so fidgety today, a bundle of energy. You know how they say pregnant women start "nesting" right before their baby is born? You know, they start cleaning the house, tying up loose ends and preparing for the big day. I feel like I am in that stage, LOL. In some ways I am also "expecting" a new life to begin, ha ha! Hopefully that energy bodes well this weekend so I can clean my house before Christmas company comes.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

One Step Closer!

Just got home from a long drive--not looking forward to that, but made it safely despite the weather hassles of yesterday. Had a good pre-op class and a very short and sweet appointment with my surgeon. I felt well prepared and have all my ducks in a row for next week. Holy mackerel! Next week, not even a full week. Just a mere 5 days, 8 hours and 4 minutes. Slight change of plans, since my sister is still a bit under the weather, my brother is going to be my chauffeur instead. Can't believe it is just a few days away.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Winter Weather...Ick!

I drove in crappy weather for about 200 miles to try to get to my pre-op appointment tomorrow. The first of many trips. I finally decided to call it quits about 45 minutes from Sioux Falls and got a hotel room to stay the night until morning. I can start my day fresh tomorrow, although the forecast says blowing snow and bitter wind chills for tomorrow. Hopefully things look better in the daylight.

In the mean time, I got to my hotel room in time to watch most of The Biggest Loser finale. Wow! What inspiration. It was so awesome to see Shay--and she got offered $1000 for every pound she loses by the next season finale in early 2010. Wouldn't that be an awesome motivator! I wish! So if there is anyone out there that wants to pay me $1000 a pound, you can start with a down payment of about $23,000. LOL!

I am excited about my class tomorrow, hope it answers a lot of my questions. I am getting so close to the big day--this time next week I will be banded and in recovery in the hospital! That's crazy to think about.

Yippee! An NSV!!

What's an NSV you ask? It's a non-scale victory! It's all those aha moments that aren't scale related that tell you your body is changing. So yesterday I was working at my office and I got a new storage cabinet I had to put together. While I was working, bending, stretching, lifting etc. I complained because my pants were falling down! Ha ha! I literally was showing off my bright purple undies and tugging my pants up every time I moved. My co-worker said, my pants looked longer--which is true because they were hanging about 2 inches below where they used to sit on my waist. Losing your pants is a good thing! Might have to search my closet for a few smaller sizes, or perhaps a trip to the thrift store for some "in-between" sizes. (Thanks for the idea Sarah!)

Monday, December 7, 2009

Last Minute Instructions from Surgery Center

Got a phone call today from Cherish, a nurse at the surgery center. She had lots of questions for me and several instructions for the pre-surgery class and the day of surgery. Her phone call really makes things real! I can't believe it is getting so close. But of course there are a few potential glitches--life wouldn't be normal if there weren't some things to stress me out! The weather is threatening to make my travels to Sioux Falls a bit treacherous, but I guess that's life in the midwest. Second thing is my sister, who was going to be my chauffeur is ill, so I am not sure she will be available (sure hope it's nothing serious!), so for now I am still counting on it but thinking about a plan B just in case, which would be my brother instead. But we have a week to sort all that out, it will all work in the end.

Another Pound Down

Saw a new number again on the scale, down to 282. I am hoping to be in the 270's before surgery. I have about a week to do it. Of course I think my scale will differ from the doctors office, so I will have to take that into account too. This time next week I will be packing my bags for the trip to Sioux Falls. This week is going to fly by.

I am surprised by my diet, in that the longer I am on it the easier it has become. Amazingly 1000 calories doesn't leave me feeling hungry. In fact there are some times that I actually feel full. I think for the first time in many, many years I am actually listening to my body. I think that drinking a lot has helped to feel full and eating smaller meals, more often has helped to keep the cravings away. The only thing that gets me is seeing food on TV, or smelling someone cooking actully makes my mouth water. It's a crazy brain trigger. It's not hunger, it's just a craving. The body and mind are a complicated, strange thing.

Tomorrow night I am headed to my mom's house to stay the night so that I am a little closer to Sioux Falls for my pre-op class and appointment with Dr. O'Brien. I hope everything goes well and he sees that I have been making acceptable progress before surgery. The days just keep ticking away!

Sunday, December 6, 2009

8 Days...23 Hours...and Counting

Wow! It's getting closer. I am doing much better on my liquid diet. Of course a little more variety would help, but the more I have been doing it, the more I am getting used to it. It's also encouraging to see the scale keep dipping down little by little. Makes the mushy stuff worth it. It's also good to know that I have strong enough will power to stick to something too. I know that these two weeks are preparing me for living with the lap band.

I have a busy week this week, both at work and personally. Wednesday is the big day in Sioux Falls, going for my pre-op class. Then the days will fly by even faster and before I know it I will be back in Sioux Falls for surgery. There is such hope for the New Year! I hope that I can make it the best time in my life.

Friday, December 4, 2009

One Step Closer

I have an appointment with my shrink today, lol. I think going to a therapist is one of the smartest decisions I ever made for myself. I had so much garbage in my brain that led me to my 303 pounds and I just kept going in the wrong direction in so many areas of my life. I feel like I am at the best place mentally than I have been in a long time and soon hopefully the physical and mental me will match up much better.

Saw 283 again on the scale today, that's awesome. I know I should weigh myself less often, but for now it's encouraging, not discouraging. Later on, I may choose one day a week as my "official" weigh in day so that I don't get wrapped up in numbers. I also need to remember to look for non-scale victories (NSV's) when the going gets tough. I need to do my measurements before I forget too, so I can write them down here.

10 days and counting!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Pre-Op Tests Are Done!

Just got back from the clinic. Blood work was good, had my x-rays and EKG. Had a good chat with my PCP, Dr. Marciano. He has a very different bedside manner, kind of a hard ass, lol with a caring touch. He will definetly give it to you straight, yet you walk away knowing that he really does care about your well being--physically and emotionally. I wasn't sure about him at first, but the more I see him, the more I like him.

So now the tests will all get sent to Sanford and hopefully I will be all ready to go. One step closer. The one thing he did ask about was my diet, as my iron was a little low. I just started taking the multivitamin yesterday, so hopefully that keeps it in check. I am sure I will also have occasional bloodwork done at the surgeon's office over the next few months. Life is good...just a few more days to wait.

New Number

Just a quick update, actually saw 283 on the scale today...not sure if it's ready to stick yet though, but I actually saw the number! Woo hoo, 20 pounds!

Getting Closer

Today I have the final pre-op tests at my local clinic; x-rays, EKG and blood work. I am feeling good. I keep seeing a little progress on the scale, but more than anything I can feel the difference. Scale is around 285, which is 18 pounds down from June 2009, when I started all this. My pants are looser, my stomach isn't its usual bloated, full feeling. I am peeing like a race horse from all of my liquids, lol. My countdown ticker says 11 days, 23 It is still sinking in. Next week it's off to Sioux Falls for my pre-op class with the dietician and final pre-op visit with my surgeon. I am also going to visit one of my good friends while I am there, so that will be a bonus.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Moving Right Along

Tomorrow is the day of my pre-op tests at the clinic. Each appointment I have brings me closer to my surgery date. Less than 2 weeks to go. It's all feeling very surreal. I am tiring a little of my liquid diet. It is so limited, it's just hard to find things that are satisfying. I started taking a multi-vitamin today. Since I needed chewable ones, I figured I might as well get the fun ones. So I got Flintstones Complete. Reminds me of my childhood, lol. I used to love them back then.


This is tough! I am trying hard to fight this feeling of hunger. I really miss having something chewy or crunchy. I am also trying to let myself not get ravenously hungry by having a snack or juice in between meals. But this is taking all of my mental strength to stick to my liquids and try to keep my calories for the day around 1000. Maybe I should try some gum or hard candy or something just to give my mouth something to do. I know that I just need to keep concentrating on the end goal and stay in the moment.

I am a strong person and I can get through this. It is building my character. I am ready to do something really big for myself. I am worth it!

Official Before Pictures---Again

*** I had to repost this one after I made some blog changes...

Well, it may not be pretty, but here are some official pre-surgery photos. In this picture I am 285 pounds--down from an all-time high of 303 earlier in 2009. I am wearing a women's 3X shirt and size 30 jeans. The jeans were a little loose, with no spandex. Otherwise, I would typically wear a size 28 pants, usually with some spandex for eased fit. Notice my right arm has gotten a bit of a folded flab over the past few years. Also note the full face and double chin. Hopefully the pictures only get better from here!!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Lots of Heavy Breathing

I had one of my first pre-op tests today at my local clinic. I had to do a pulmonary function test, so I had to do lots of heavy breathing, lol. On Thursday I have x-rays, blood work and and EKG and I have an appointment with my PCP, Dr. Marciano. Getting all my ducks in a row, hope everything comes back OK, so there are no delays in my surgery date. I think they should all be fine.

I am surviving my liquid diet. It's a bit challenging and it's hard to feel satisfied. But I think that a lot of it is head hunger rather than real hunger. Of course everything I see makes me hungry. For instance, this afternoon at break there will be popcorn--one of my favorite foods in the whole world. And I will just need to sit there and drool. Those are the toughest parts of this, but I just need to remember the big picture and why I am making these sacrifices now for big rewards later. Patience!