Tag Archives: changes

Post-Op Life: Righting the Ship

This post is going to be fairly brief, as things around these parts are crazy busy these days.  But the crazy busy is in a good way.  So I’ll do a quick drive-by update with bullet points, because it’s about all I have time for right now.

  • Gallbladder surgery went well.  My recovery was smooth and uneventful.  I did learn at my follow-up appointment that my gallbladder had stopped ejecting bile properly, and as a result, cholesterol and bile had accumulated on the inside walls of the sac.  As my surgeon said, “It was definitely time for it to come out.”  So it’s good that I had the surgery when I did.
  • I also learned that I no longer have a fatty liver.  When I had my gallbladder removed, my surgeon did a liver biopsy, as the lab work I had done on my trip to the ER in June gave him cause to want to poke around there.  The path report revealed that I no longer had evidence of fatty liver disease.  This is huge, given that on the day of my sleeve surgery a little over 2 years ago, my liver had 60% fatty infiltration.  My surgeon was thrilled to learn that my fatty liver had been resolved by my WLS.
  • Looks like I’ll be having more surgery this year.  UGH.  My right knee has decided it’s had enough of being patched together with a neoprene brace.  I’m looking at getting it scoped over Christmas so that I can have 2 weeks off my feet, and more importantly, 2 weeks with someone around who can help me!  And depending on what happens with my shoulder, there may be yet another surgery in the cards for me this year.  My left shoulder has decided it’s had enough and can’t even.  So I will be heading BACK to the ortho to find out what the hell is going on with my shoulder once I get back from being out of town this week.
  • Regain is real, y’all.   So for those of you who are early on in the process of having WLS, or who have just had it, please don’t delude yourselves into thinking, “I’m going to lose this weight FOREVER!!!!” or say stuff like “That’s ______ pounds gone FOREVER!!!!”   Or at the very least, don’t say those things without realizing that while yes, losing the weight as a result of surgical intervention is fast and seemingly easy, keeping it off is much, much more difficult.  I’ll be real with y’all–I’ve gained back about 35 pounds this past year (scary, huh?).  I know exactly why and how, and I’ve decided to go back to a devil I know to lose it.  I’ll be starting Weight Watchers online next week in an attempt to get back down to the weight I was at this time last year.  I felt good, I looked good, I slept better, and I moved around better.  I need the structure that the WW program provides because clearly I can’t provide it for myself right now.  Also?  All I have ever tried to do in my life is lose weight.  I’ve never known how to maintain it.  Losing weight is something I am good at; maintenance is not.  I’m scared I’ll never learn how to maintain a weight I can live with.  So in the meantime, I’ll be back to weight loss mode so that I can at least have a shot at feeling good about how I look and feel again.

Well, that’s all I’ve got time for…work and meal prep are calling.

Post-Op Week 106: Revisiting the Pre-Op Diet

So it’s been 2 years since my VSG surgery, and I’m on the brink of a second surgery.

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Fair Day

Today was a great day to head to the State Fair. It was not too hot, and the rain that was expected held off until late afternoon, and the people watching…so choice!  Today was the Texas-OU game at the Cotton Bowl, which is right in the middle of Fair Park, so all sorts of folks descend upon the Fair for the game.  We wandered the fairgrounds in search of cars, pig races, livestock, arts and crafts and a few food items.

I celebrated a couple of NSVs on our expedition to the Fair.  Each year when we go, we take the light rail down to Fair Park–it is easier and cheaper than parking on the fairgrounds.  Last year when we went, my husband and I could not share a seat on the train.  We had to sit in separate seats because we each took up too much space.  Today, we both fit into one train seat.

Here is a picture of the other one:

Left:  Me, October 2012.  Right:  Me, today.

Left: Me, October 2012. Right: Me, today.

Both photos were taken in the portico outside the Automobile Building on the fairgrounds.  There really is quite a difference between the two–my shoulders are so much more narrow, my upper body is smaller, and I am even carrying my bag differently since there is less of me for it to cross.  I think that’s a win.

I’ll share a few of the photos I took today while we were at the Fair.  As Ice Cube once said, “it was a good day.”
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Post-Op Week 11 Progress Report and Perspective, Part 2

postopweek11-092213I knew I would have a loss this week since last week I had a slight gain due to water retention.  I didn’t realize that the loss would be this huge, though!   I knew my fluid retention was flushed out, partially because my hormone levels calmed down near the end of the week and I felt less inclined to eat everything I saw in sight, I drank water like it was my job (well, it kind of is, I guess…) and I peed some pretty epic pees.

Hey, I keep it real around here.

Anyway, I now weigh about what I weighed my junior year of college, which was 20 years ago.  It is trippy to think about.  Also trippy is an NSV that I wasn’t expecting so soon.

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Learning Capacity and Limits

What I ate today:

Today's food choices, clockwise from top right:  meatballs in marinara (leftovers from yesterday) for breakfast; spicy turkey taco meat with 2 teaspoons guacamole for lunch and dinner; thinly sliced Boar's Head Maple Turkey for snacks; Isopure Zero Carb for late evening drink to make up protein deficit; and multivitamin and calcium supplement x2.

Today’s food choices, clockwise from top right: meatballs in marinara (leftovers from yesterday) for breakfast; 2 ounces of spicy turkey taco meat with 2 teaspoons guacamole for lunch and dinner; thinly sliced Boar’s Head Maple Turkey for snacks; Isopure Zero Carb for late evening drink to make up protein deficit; and multivitamin and calcium supplement x2.

Today is day two of soft solids and the learning curve is much more steep than you’d imagine.  My first day saw me struggle to meet my minimum protein goal  (60 grams) AND get the minimum amount of water in (64 ounces) for the day.  I was not pleased with my performance, but after some thought, I decided to be gentle with myself–I’d just graduated to a new stage of actual food after 3 weeks of nothing but liquids.  I decided that it was going to take some time for me to learn how much my new tiny tummy could hold, and that it was going to take a while to learn to eat less than this new tummy could hold.

This part has not been easy. Continue reading


I have learned over the years that when one’s mind is made up, this diminishes fear; knowing what must be done does away with fear.–Rosa Parks, American civil rights activist

I am less than two months away from surgery and the reality of what I am about to do to myself is rapidly sinking in.

I am about to ask a surgeon to remove 80 percent of my stomach.  On purpose.

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all great changes are preceded by chaos, or how I decided to quit fighting and go under the knife.

The last post I made to this blog was in June of 2012.  This was the last time that I really invested time into taking care of myself.

Since then, I’ve backslid in the biggest of ways–not really paying attention to what I ate, how much I ate, or how much I moved.  As a result I’ve gained back over half the weight I lost when I set out upon the latest of weight loss journeys that my adult life has been consumed with.

In January, I had a 6-month checkup with my primary care physician.  Because I am diabetic, I must go in every 6 months and have my a1c, cholesterol, triglycerides and other things checked.  I knew before I went in to do the lab work that the results would be dismal; I was just waiting for her to say them to my face.

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One step forward, two steps back.

This week’s progress:  +5.6 pounds

Total loss:  -86.6 pounds

Back to square one.  I decided a few things today, though:

1.  Stairs only at work, unless I’m wheeling in my cart of stuff.  Then I’ll take the elevator.  I don’t care how winded I am at the top of the stairs, I’m dragging my chunky butt up the two flights to get to my classroom.

2.  Going to give the low-carb eating another go.  I didn’t buy any bread or starchy stuff at the store tonight, so that’s a step in the right direction.  I’ll be fixing an omelet tomorrow morning for breakfast, and drinking some almond milk to go along with it.  I’m packing some pistachios to eat as a snack a couple of times tomorrow during the day to stave off the hunger pangs I know I’ll get.

3.  I didn’t buy any diet soda when I went grocery shopping tonight, so I’m going to move to drinking water with fruit cut up in it.  I already drink nearly a gallon of water a day anyway, but I need variety.  I figured cutting up fruit and putting it in there might give me that, plus fruit servings.  I need to cut back on my caffeine intake anyhow, so here is one way to do it.

I’m determined to hit the -100 pound mark by my birthday, which is less than 30 days away.  Hopefully incorporating these things into my days will help tremendously.  I’m just tired of the stupid gains and losses, and wish it could just be all losses.  I know that gains are a part of the process, but I’m frustrated with the process and to be honest, on some days, just want to chuck it all and say “f this, I give up.”

But then I look at the photos from 2 years ago, and from my starting week and remember how awful I looked and felt.  Then I give myself a boot to the ass, and keep going.

It’s just a series of kicks to the ass, this journey is.  Swift, hard kicks.