One beautiful Granddaughter, One Partial Hysterectomy, One Very Hot Summer, One Very Warm Autumn, One car roll over after tire blows, One freaking bad ass MRSA infection, Too Many Politicians (BOTH Parties!), One Very Nice Christmas, One Way Too Cold Winter, One Life To Re-Boot, But No Partridges In Any Pear Trees……
I am a terrible blogger and I promise for all those going through weight loss surgery or those who just need encouragement with their lifestyle / proper eating program to shed obesity forever (raising my right hand here), I will never let this much time elapse between blogs ever again!
My last blog was about attending the wedding of my brother-in-law and sister- in-law in Ireland. It was a fairy tale wedding…. Lovely; perfect. I am very sad though as we wanted to take our nephew Sam for a few hours to a park, get an ice cream, etc and did not get to. We barely got to bond with him at all…. I was playing motorboat with him and he was loving it and was whisked away from me. I am perplexed? If we are lucky, we may get to see him every 3 years so we really want to make out time with him count. Maybe next time. Anyway, as far as my weight….. I was the lowest of lows there; below 130 lbs. Or as Paul and my Mum-in-law would say, “I looked ‘ill’ “. We had a brilliant time in Ireland and I just didn’t eat much on top of the light speed pace we were keeping trying to ‘see everyone’ within the cramped amount of time we had there. Sometimes, many times now, I just am not that hungry or food is not that important. It helps to have a tummy the size of a potato and if I had a normal size tummy things would surely be different. WARNING! I may have said this in my previous blog; the cakes in the UK; DO NOT GO DOWN WELL. That lovely jelly like marzipan? I think that is what it is called. Made me so sick on my tummy.
When we got back, I saw my surgeon. Since my weight dipping too low had been a re-occurring problem, he wanted to see me. After taking inventory of my ‘usual diet’ which was low fat / lite yogurt with granola, fruit, sandwich or wrap on lite bread with low fat this and low fat turkey burgers/ beef, lowest fat meat we could get , celery with low fat laughing cow or low fat peanut batter low fat everything or lite everything. FIRST THING, front and center, STOP! STOP the low fat / lite everything. I have a stomach the size of a baking potato. I can’t hold enough food that I need low fat/ lite food. I am like *****” WHAT!!!!!” ***** that concept was SO hard for me to even digest. How could I stop eating lite food, surely I would gain weight. They assured me I would not and guess what? They were right. From that moment on, for the most part (diet soda’s being the exception, of course), I pretty much quit eating the lite/low fat versions of everything. From my peanut butter to my salad dressing, it is real. Honestly, with the crap they put in it to make it ‘lite’, it is better for me! A quick example, and I will touch on this more in a moment, is ice cream. Surely the ‘lite’ is better? Um, no. I have had ice cream maybe 5 times in the last year. TWO times was the LITE/ LOW FAT / ‘GOOD FOR YOU’ stuff from Kroger. Guess what? I spent the whole night dumping! Yep. The ‘lite’ stuff made me dump, both times. BUT the 4 or so times I had either Coldstone or Breyers ALL NATURAL in a reasonable amount (½ -1 cup, not a honking big bowl full); I was fine. BEWARE OF LITE/ LOW FAT. I don’t recommend it. It is all dressed up to look ‘good for you’ but in the end is loaded with CRAP CHEMICALS!
July 2, 2010 was one of the best days of my (and my hubby’s) life as I welcomed our first grand-child into the world! Kadence Faye was born weighing 8 lbs 1 oz but only stayed there a nano second and is so big now. She is the light of our world, the apple of my eye and I would do anything for that child. The word ‘love’ does not even begin to describe it. The only thing I can think of to make it relate to the subject of the WLS is it is so wonderful to be able to get on the floor and play with her and not get out of breath or my arthritic knees act up. Otherwise, I am just throwing this in because I am ONE PROUD MAMO! 😉
As for my dream of wanting to ‘give Paul a baby’, I ran a good race and I tried hard. We had done the Dr’s, pills, shots, you name it but little did I know my uterus was ‘the rocky road to Dublin’. Only one of the fibroids looked bothersome on the ultra-sound but what it was causing me was more than anyone could bear. Dealing with the IBS fall-out (a HUGE symptom/ co issue of fibromyalgia) was one thing, but spending 10+ days a month (and sometimes only 20 days between) being in the ‘womanly way’ was too much. My sweet GYN recommended a partial; actually had been recommending it for a long time. But my “I will not give up on having a baby until the last egg drops”, I was holding true to. Only it was getting more and more difficult. I wanted to give my husband, 10 years my junior (yeah, yeah, call me Demi Moore, I already call Paul, my “Ashton Kutcher“; call me a cougar, honestly the age difference does not EVER pose an issue for us)….. Anyway, wanted to give him a child but being now in my mid 40’s and fighting FMS and CFIDS harder than ever, who was I kidding? Paul had been telling me for years, “I married you, not your womb”. He cares greatly for my girls and Kadence has him wrapped around her little finger. There is NOTHING he would not do for the girls….. I don’t know if they realize. I mean one Christmas many years ago, he drove 40 miles to buy a pair of frog slippers one of them wanted (or some animal; frog, turtle, etc). Freezing cold in December, working on his car, he dropped everything because I found these damned slippers in Lynchburg. 80 miles round trip later, we had slippers and …..that is all I will say on that. The point is, he is the best husband and has never made me feel wrong or bad about my decision. IN FACT, he encouraged it so in July I had my partial hysterectomy and with the exception of a fleeting moment during a movie trailer (a little girl named “Sophie”, our girls name), I have zero regrets! Dr. G said there was all but a ZERO I would have or could have conceived and the pathologist did not even count them there were so many fibroids. After the surgery when Dr G came in, he said it was way worse then he thought and no way I would have every conceived. So when I did the pills and the shots, etc, it wasn’t what was coming ‘down the hatch’, it was the ‘store-room’ that was defective. So those who watch “Grey’s” and hear Meredith talk about her ‘hostile uterus?’, that is what I had. As for my experience in hospital, all I can say is LOCALS, GO TO LEWIS GALE OVER ROANOKE MEMORIAL ANYDAY!. THEY KICK BUTT!
In keeping with my tradition, I held the mask (long childhood horror story relating to an anestesiologist; bad experience, so my Dr Sleepjuice and I ALWAYS come to the understanding that I HOLD THE MASK UNTIL I AM ASLEEP).
For the FIRST time ever, I had a woman Dr Sleepjuice. Her name was Dr. Carter and I only bring this up because I ‘freaked her out’. She could not believe I had RNY; asked if I had the skin removed and was surprised I had not because she said I WAS TINY!. YES, this itty bitty little lady Dr said I WAS TINY!
=:-O That made my day, well, as best it can when you are a woman losing the physical part of you that makes you a woman. L
They put me down as a fall risk. Huh? I know I am a klutz but….. In the end they did not put that band on me. They said if you tell them you fell when you were 3 they will do that. Probably my fall on the ice the previous winter.
I was nervous. So, so nervous. In the end I know I was harboring those last 2nd and 3rd thoughts….. This was it….. This was really it. But after months of Aunt Flo being history and no more of the 10 day hormone migraines, etc. It was all fine! Other than being last ‘in line for take-off’ and hallucinating diet cokes, everything went fine and YES, they CAN do this surgery WITHOUT any incision. I will leave it at that. Google it if you have any questions regarding that bit of it! J
The nursing staff were amazing and I became ‘BFF’s’ with both my day and night nurse! One night nurse, especially, Gail as she put, “Would stay in there all night and talk” if she could. She had considered the surgery and we talked about it. One thing I love and will always be willing to do is mentor anyone considering RNY or LAP Band.
My recovery was fairly textbook and I went back to work. It was one HOT summer. As it had been for many years, our life was stagnant. Our mortgage was TOO big and we knew that deep inside somewhere before taking it on in 2006. Who were we kidding? We were close to the girls other home and I fell deeply and madly ’in love’ with this house. So the next several years we treaded water and held on by our fingernails. The commute to and from Salem everyday was affecting me in a very negative way. I was good for nothing most of the time because my fatigue was all ‘guns a blazing’. My weight has been consistent THOUGH in October for some reason, I did get up to 152 lbs. Part of how I realized this was affecting me was I started trying on jeans for the cooler weather and YIKES! They were a bit snug.
MY ADVICE for RNY patients as well as anyone wanting to eat healthy and you get ‘off track’, go back to BASICS. Go back to your core eating plan; your ‘soft place to fall’ in the eating world. I recommend having some of your favorites on hand. For instance, I love celery sticks with REGULAR not lite, Laughing Cow spreadable swiss cheese. LOVE IT! Usually sounds good when nothing else does. Find your food that is like that and make sure you have it in hand.
Monday September 29, 2010 started out like any other day and for all intents and purposes, with the exception of it being Monday and Monday’s being crap, was a usual day. So, I am driving 24. Mellow music; I wanted something mellow, so ‘Coldplay’ it was. I am on the stretch just inside where Rt 24 turns into 1 lane near what Paul and I call, “The Good Ole Boy’s Auto Shop”. if any of you Bedford Co. people know what I am talking about (near Alars Auto). Shake… Shake…. Shake…. Shimmy…. Shake….. Shimmy….. What the????? The soothing vocals of Chris Martin just kept on….The next thing I know I am out of control then on my roof! ‘Coldplay’ continued, but it was soothing; comforting. But something…. God…. He told me He had my back and no sooner, I was shiny side up again and got my car to stop with a little help from the hill next to the road. So if you ever hear/see me say “Coldplay” is my favorite band; they took the roll with me”.
Inertia. Inertia is what one of the two men that witnessed my tumble and roll. Naw….. I have never called God by that name but the next several minutes there was a cell call to Paul, ambulances, sirens, people everywhere asking questions…. Leave me alone!
To hospital I went and waited, waited, waited (and I was a true ‘emergency’) That collar thing was beyond annoying. The only real evidence anything had happened was a huge, ugly GASH ON MY LEG….WHICH…. The hospital used as a gateway, unbeknownst to me, to give me MRSA. In case you don’t know what MRSA is, it is a staph infection extremely resistant to antibiotics and is one bad , big BITCH! I don’t EVER want to fight her again.
When I found out I had MRSA, I was taken out of work and it took SEVEN….SEVEN, yes that is right, SEVEN weeks to go back to work. I will not post pictures on this blog but if you are anxious or curious enough, contact me and I will consider sending some pictures.
I spent several hours each day compressing my wound with warm water towels an soaks. I took 2 rounds of doxycycline aka the big blue pill they give MRSA patients. It is a force to be reckoned with, I will just say that. I would not wish it on anyone. Sadly because I had injured my arm at the 1st of the year, took time off for my surgery post op healing and then had 7 weeks off for the STAPH/MRSA, I exhausted all my FMLA time at work. They did what they could but rules are rules. I also had further medical documentation regarding my intestinal issues (I will get to that in a moment) which excused me if I went over on a break, etc as my gut basically runs my life. I don’t know a more delicate way of saying it really. While I liked many of the people I worked with, there were those not fit to be called human for someone took a very important medical document OUT of my bosses IN BOX. Swiped it. Stole it. Besides robbery, can we say VIOLATION OF HIPPA? Just because my ex-employer chose not to do anything about it, I do believe in karma and the person/people responsible will reap what they sow.
So we drudge on, do the best we can in our quest to ‘re boot’ our life.
So what is up with my gut and is this related to my RNY? My gut is partially IBS and partially we don’t completely know yet. There were whispers of Chrones Disease but since I have been off work certain things have gotten much better that made it look like it was possibly Chrones.
For those that have had RNY and are in the early days and / or are considering RNY remember, you are never going to be able to consume very much food which includes fiber. IF you let things get ‘backed up’ it will start a horrible cycle and trust me, it is not at all fun. I have had my gut x rayed 3 or 4 times now and when I am having ‘issues’ they always find the same thing. I am full of……… well, you know. Always, 100% of the time. The pain is awful…. Nearly as bad as a gallbladder attack.
So my advice there is find what keeps ‘things moving’ and don’t stray because if you do then it can really be bad.
The holidays were fine. I did fine with the sweets…. Ya know, I just don’t have much of a sweet tooth anymore. I know that helps. I made the fudge and cookies and all, but really didn’t have too much worry… of course I was in the middle of one of my gut spells.
In October my weight peaked to 152. That is the highest it had been and only went there briefly. Then it started going downward. I stayed in the mid 140’s for the longest time and finally in the last few weeks have kept it right in my sweet spot 138-145ish lbs. I changed the top number on my sweet spot because I realize it is stupid to think that 145 is ‘too much’; that is ridiculous!
My best advice is eat healthy, eat a variety (I am always looking for new recipes & remember, recipes can be tweaked to make them healthier), DO NOT DEPRIVE; IF YOU WANT SOME ICE CREAM HAVE IT! JUST DO NOT HAVE ½ GALLON.
All my life I thought to be lean meant deprivation. I basically eat what I WANT. I do! Last night I had pizza and ice cream! I DID!, I had 1 piece of Domino’s beef and onion pizza and a scoop of Breyers All Natural Peach Ice Cream (nothing artificial in it; all natural and same calories and fat as the ‘lite’ CRAP), and this morning I weighed in at 142, yesterday it was 141, etc. Right now I am hovering in the low 140’s, but I am going to repeat my first sentence
Last night I had Pizza and Ice Cream. NOW! I do not do this every night or even every week! This is something I do maybe every couple months, but still, it is an option I have and take full advantage of every now and then!
As I tell a lot of people who are curious about the surgery: after the initial ‘getting back to eating normal’, you can eat pretty much like anyone else; just a lot less! LOVE IT! I am LOVING MY RNY and still, 4 years out would not change a thing!