it is on

I signed up for the zombie 5K on Saturday. It’s a done deal.

I walked the three miles at the park and felt fine. No fatigue or pains, I am slow but at least it didn’t hurt. It took me over an hour, which means I’ll probably be the slowest human and in the case of a real zombie race, one of the first to have my brains eaten.  I plan to carry a container of Morton’s Salt with me in case. Here’s why.

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/10/31/opinion/a-zombie-is-a-slave-forever.html?smid=fb-share

I noticed this when I opened the box of protein bars. It’s an incredible and encouraging gesture, Although it surprised me at first, thinking maybe I got a rogue box but nope, they all have the same messages. They taste great too.

 

weigh in disappointment and perspective

I had a bummer weigh in Tuesday morning, I hadn’t lost anything in a week. I weighed the same as last Tuesday and frankly I was pissed. I had followed my diet, drank my fluids, took my meds, walked, and did everything I was told.  So this was the first question I asked my surgeon. It was my 2 wk follow-up and I already had a list of questions but this was the first thing I blurted out when he asked if I had any questions.

His answer surprised me. It was OK.  He pointed out I had already lost 20% of the total amount I was expected to lose, I have roughly 40 pounds to go. In fact I may have lost too much too fast and he wants to see a slow steady loss instead of a fast one.  I will continue to lose but not as quickly as I did in the last two weeks, my body will see to that.

The second thing I asked was if I could move on to pureed food and ditch the protein shakes that I hate so much. One of the nurses told me I’d be drinking them another month or two and I was sorely tempted to wrap the blood pressure cuff around her neck when I heard that. My surgeon said no, but before I could get violent he added they sold a special protein bar that I could digest and I could have fruit-free non-custard light yogurt. I’ve already had yogurt and he said to continue to eat it. I will come back in 8 weeks and he said we’ll see then about ditching the meds and moving on to real food. I hope so, it would be nice to eat at Christmas with my family. I also got his OK to take the Host at mass.  I bought 2 containers of extra high protein yogurt and 4 boxes of protein bars. I knew my son would want to try the protein bars.  Both yogurt and protein bars taste wonderful. It was great to actually bite into and chew something besides my calcium citrate. I’ll probably be sick of them by December but for now I’m happy, happy. I don’t plan to buy any more Atkins shakes and will eventually finish off the Carnation Breakfast. I’m thinking of digging a deep hole and burying the Unjury.  I’m no longer worried about getting enough protein now.

He gave me the OK to go back to work and start working out, even encouraged me to start weight training. So I plan to go back to yoga next Tuesday. I’m even thinking about buying my own yoga mat.  As for weight training I’d have to get help, I might go back to the Indian Clinic gym and ask the guys there about starting out. I am intimidated by gyms in general.

I asked him about doing the zombie 5K and he said I wasn’t in shape for it yet. But I’m going to walk today and see if I can do 3 miles. If I can, without getting too tired or feeling sick, I’m going to sign up for that race. I will enter as a human, because I don”t have the imagination for a costume, but I will be as slow as the average zombie. Maybe slower, but darn it, I want that t-shirt.

I admit I wanted some instant answers and didn’t get them, not the ones I wanted. But that’s OK, I can see the time is coming when I can eat real food, when I can finally stop taking the meds and even meet my weight loss goals. It’s  a slow process and he told me patients can take up to 18 months to lose weight, few people continue to lose after that time. It also takes the stomach about that long to fully adjust to the changes and not to rush anything. In fact he said starting on solids too early slows down weight loss and some patients have even more trouble losing, another reason to keep me on liquids. So I am going to keep on keeping on and try to be patient.  It will happen.

Since I woke up thirsty at 4am this seems appropriate. The chorus adds so much, in my opinion. Glorious.

Woo-Hoo!

I walked at the lake today and I did two miles. Non-stop, very slowly but it was definitely two miles.

I started out thinking “I’ll just go as long as I feel OK” and figured it wouldn’t be far since I haven’t walked since Thursday, the day before my filter removal surgery. That day I didn’t walk very far, probably less than a quarter of a mile and I felt tired.  So this was a great and wonderful surprise. I stopped before I felt tired and started to breathe hard. I expected to stop and rest but I didn’t need it.

I don’t know if it’s that my body is healing, getting used to the bypass or if having the filter helped. I know since then I haven’t had as much trouble with gas either. I did have a little constipation but that was from not drinking enough and I hope it’s passed. Whatever the reason or reasons I don’t care, I’m just glad I finally did 2 miles. It’s halfway to my old personal best and I hope to be doing 4 miles in a few weeks, maybe even going back to yoga.  I’d still like to do this race but it’s still too soon. I want that t-shirt.  https://earlysignup.com/zombie5k

I tried on my aspirational jeans today and THEY FIT!  Granted, they have spandex in them but they fit. I could zip them up and breathe. They look pretty good too. I plan to wear them to my dr. appt. on Tuesday. It’s official, I have dropped one size.  woo-hoo! Now if I can move on to soft/pureed foods and meat and dump the protein shakes.

Porkchop and I spent yesterday like this, recovering from Friday’s surgery.

filter removal

They removed my IVC filter yesterday. This was the final procedure of my gastric bypass, from now on it’s (hopefully) only doctor appts. I go to see my surgeon on Tuesday and I hope he tells me I can have something besides those vile shakes for protein and I no longer have to take my meds. I know I’ll always have to take the supplements and that’s cool.

Right now I’m having some decaf tea. I’ve never been a tea drinker, I was a Diet Coke Diet Dr. Pepper fiend. But it is cold outside and the warm tea soothes my stomach. I can understand why the British were in the Chinese’s debt for tea all those years.

The operation, for it was, far as I am concerned, went well. I got to pre-op and went through the drill of changing clothes and waiting and getting hooked up to an IV.  When I got to surgery they checked to see if I was prepped (I was) and taken to surgery where they exposed my ladyparts and swabbed them with some cold alcohol. I lay there like this awhile and asked when I’d be knocked out. The nurse told me I wouldn’t be, I would be awake and she gave me painkillers through the IV.

The prep wasn’t too bad, but the blue sheet placed over me to isolate the surgical area had to be moved and adjusted. I felt the sticky parts pulled away from my skin and tensed though it didn’t hurt. Everything was finally ready and I lay there in my hairnet listening to oldies while we waited for the surgeon.

The surgery itself was short. I wasn’t in pain and only felt some pressure on my stomach and some pulling. They did tell me the incision would be twice as long as the first one, getting the filter out takes a little more room. But I should be going home later that day too.  They said everything went well. The filter did its job, it caught one blood clot and someone even showed me when I asked.

Since I wasn’t unconscious they took me straight to my room. I was told I couldn’t move my right leg and had to keep it straight. I was to lie flat on my back for the next six hours and have a good rest. I did, sort of but never quite fell asleep. The sounds outside, the blood pressure cuff, weight of the heart monitor and being unable to move around too much kept me awake. My sister came to visit me too, I asked how she and the baby were. She told me she and her husband bought a crib and I nearly sat up. We’re not supposed to buy anything for a baby until it’s born, it’s a cultural thing, and I had reminded both my sisters of this. I didn’t yell but reminded her again and said if they had a baby shower before the birth I wouldn’t be going but would wait and buy stuff only when the little one was here.  We talked about other things too and she left an hour later.  They brought me a tray and I managed to eat some cream soup and drink a little Crystal Light.

I went home six hours later. The surgeon came to see me and said I did fine and he was releasing me. The nurse came to take out my IV and remove the monitors. I got dressed, I was a little shaky and stiff from lying down so long and it took me awhile. Getting on my jeans took longer but going to the bathroom was a wonderful relief. The nurse returned with my discharge papers and told me I needed to go home and rest. No lifting anything weighing more than 10 pounds for a week,  no driving for 24 hours and since I wasn’t hurting now I probably wouldn’t hurt but to take Tylenol. If I began to bleed or really hurt to come back. Jerry brought the car around and they wheeled me to the door. I noticed it was cold outside and got in the car.

I followed their instructions, even forbidding the cat from sitting on my lap. If he insisted I could put a pillow between us but he didn’t. I went to bed and because I was flat most of the day my back ached. I rolled around to ease the ache but finally got up a few minutes ago and made my tea.  I feel OK.

smells and other concerns

I wrote a long entry and can’t find the bloody thing so I’m re-doing it.

I went to a funeral yesterday and the event itself did not cause me distress. My uncle was old, ready to go and had made his peace with it.  What did distress me was the dinner after, I smelled many wonderful things I hadn’t had in a long time and it made me wish I could eat. Traditional food, especially a corn soup we call tanchi or pashofa really got to me. On the way home we stopped at a Love’s so my son could use the bathroom and he came out with the best smelling pizza I’ have smelled in a long, long time. Fortunately he scarfed it down fast so I didn’t have to suffer long. Then late last night he decided to make gumbo. He apologized in advance for the delicious smells that would be coming from the kitchen. Oddly enough this didn’t bother me as much. Maybe knowing in advance helped but I didn’t want it and I am a woman who loves andouille sausage.

I told several relatives about my surgery, explaining why I wasn’t eating. Two of my cousins immediately declared they wanted to get bypasses too. I told them that I couldn’t eat solids for 2 months, some foods will be off limits permanently and that I had painful gas. They changed their minds right away. Anyone who thinks this is easy needs to be informed otherwise.  Schooled, if necessary.

The other concern I have is sexual. I don’t feel like it. I don’t want my husband to touch me, especially when I have gas and feel bloated. He’s been patient but let me know he’s willing and ready. Even when I’m not bloated I don’t feel that way, it’s like that part of me is dead. I’m hoping it’s temporary, it’s been 2 weeks since the surgery but if not I’m not sure what I’ll do. Give in eventually, for his sake perhaps.  We’ve been married 24 years and this has never been a problem before. This song has been going through my mind lately.

weigh in

I weighed in this morning, around 4am. I woke up having to go to the bathroom, a good sign since I’ve been dehydrated. I weighed in and opened my eyes to see I’ve lost a total of 16 pounds so far!  Woo-Hoo! I almost broke into this dance, might have if my bathroom was bigger.

I know 16 pounds doesn’t sound like a lot and I know I still have a long road to travel. But for me this was awesome, a major victory. I have not been this weight in more than 24 years, I passed a milestone and went from one “decade” to another in terms of weight (230’s, 220’s, etc). IT IS FINALLY PAYING OFF. All those nasty milky protein shakes, I hate ’em, I really do. I’m sick of them and knowing I’ll be drinking them for at least another month nearly makes me gag. I want to get on to real food, something I can chew, something savory and not sweet. I dread mealtimes, to be honest. It takes all my strength to sip and down these @#$% things but I do it because I have to. I have to get at least 50 gm of protein a day, the nurse said 60 gm is preferred.  And this is the only friggin’ way I have.  Besides I do not want to lose my hair. I have nice hair, to be honest my hair is my only beauty. I’m like Jo March in Little Women.

I’ve been taking smaller sips and this seems to help a lot with my gas. An hour after lunch I still had some bloating and lay down. It was uncomfortable but not painful and it passed. I even dozed off. When I woke up I made a half cup of Earl Grey decaf and sipped it slowly, it also helped. I love the smell too. So far I do not have that heavy bloated feeling and hope I  can stay this way even after dinner.

Depeche Mode announced the tour dates for their next big tour, all European dates. They only mention they’ll tour the US after Europe but no locations or dates yet.  When they do I plan to go, anywhere within 200 miles. I haven’t been to a big concert in years and frankly was afraid to before. Like will they have shirts in my size, will I be able to stand the whole time without getting too tired? The only other bummer is the cheap birdfeeder I bought yesterday. Blasted thing would not hold together and seed leaked out no matter what I tried. I finally tossed it, glad it was 70% off and I didn’t waste much on it. Right now there’s birdseed all over my patio. There’s going to be some happy birds and squirrels, once word gets out.

Wanna see something gross?

I feel it’s right to warn anyone reading this I’m going to be posting some pictures of my incisions and bruising, the after effects of surgery. If you don’t want to see, that’s fine and understandable, I respect that. If , however you do, well, just keep going. It is gross but not enough to put you off lunch. I hope.