Friday, October 31, 2008

Happy Halloween

It is good to be home. I did get my exercise in on this trip to Yankton. Twice a day even. School hot lunch did not agree with my band at all. I am pretty certain I didn't gain any weight as it didn't stay down. Oh well! I had my pre-op conversation this morning with a surgical nurse from Sanford. One of her questions made me laugh. "Have you purposely lost any weight in the past month?" DUH - like maybe 34 pounds since banding. I must admit I am edgey and not real happy about current events. I won't weigh until Monday morning at the hospital. I plan to start liquid diet tomorrow just in case they have to fiddle with my liver again. Since it is the last day of October, I need to set a new exercise goal. 354 miles isn't bad! Never would have believed I could do that. I guess I will set one for the next 60 days which would take me right up to New Years Eve. I wish my knees would let me jog as I would like to "run" a 5K in January with Allison. Maybe I could run the first block and the last block so that I look confident. I think I will load some moderately fast music on my player and try something on the treadmill at the Rec tomorrow. Can't hurt since I won't be running after Monday. Can you tell I have an "attitude" tonight. Guess I will go do some quilting to shake this mood.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Back to the Grind

We had a great time in Michigan! If shopping counts toward walking, then I was OK. However, I only took one opportunity to really exercise while I was gone so today it was back to the grind. I really did notice that I wasn't formally exercising and I guess I could say that it didn't feel right. I hope the scales don't show that result. Most of the time I was mindful of what I chose to eat. I so miss Lake Michigan. There is something about the sound of the waves and the open water that invigorates my soul. I rode my bike this afternoon when I got home from work. I will finish out the week with two a days and try to finish off my exercise goal with a bang. Since I am having surgery on Monday I don't know what restrictions will be put in place. I will start a liquid diet on Saturday so that I have a ready liver if they need to get into that area. I really wish i didn't have to do this again. Oh well! I did take my 24th day of the month picture and will post it tomorrow.

Friday, October 24, 2008

What a Difference

I know yesterday was Thursday but the lurking scale was used because I was leaving on a jet plane for Michigan and would not be able to weigh on Friday as usual. Six days and two pounds! Of course I was pleased. The real test though was sitting in those airplane seats and using the seat belt. If truth be known, I always feared that someday I would have to use one of those extenders and I always worried about my flab invading the personal space of the next person. NOT NOW! I could sit comfortably and actually cinch the belt. What a great feeling. May seem like a little problem but really not. I remember flying just this past summer when the flight attendant met a very obese woman at the door of the plane with the dreaded extender. I remember feeling so very embarrassed for her. I even sat in the middle seat of three on the flight out of Chicago and was not worried at all about the invasion principle. I had the opportunity to talk to a very nice Azusa Pacific student. He is a cross country runner. On the flight to Chicago I had just read about a 5K held in the St Paul duing the Winter Carnival. So I asked the young man how many miles that was. I will be jogging/walking a 5K soon. I plan to make that a new goal!

Monday, October 20, 2008

I Guess I Am Hooked

Today was a very busy day. I had to be in Platte by 7:30 so that I could meet Dan and drive to Andes for a meeting at 8:45. After work I needed to get a flu shot and then it was off to quilting class. I totally enjoy that experience even though I need to be more precise in measuring and cutting! When I got home after 9:15 pm, I just knew I had to exercise. I couldn't go to bed without putting in the time necessary to see results. That's why I say I guess I am hooked! I just know that each day is a gift and I need to take advantage of this opportunity to do what is healthy for me. Exercise and eating right are the two important things I need to remember.
Also, I know I have many friends and family pulling for me. You can't imagine what a morale booster that is! I so believe in the power of encouragement and the gift of caring about others. I need to reiterate my reason for writing this blog. Without a doubt, I need to write about this experience in order to sort out how I feel and what I am thinking. But also of importance is the good that might come to someone else who is contemplating this surgery. It is almost eight weeks and I am facing another surgical experience, yet I have to say, it is the best thing that has ever happened to me. Well, I have to admit, being a wife, mother, and grandmother are probably the best things. I so want to succeed!

Sunday, October 19, 2008

What I Love About Me

Deep! This might get a little deep as I just returned from church and God is speaking to me. For, oh so many years, I have tried to love myself but to no avail. From my degree program, I learned that if you want to be OK with others, you must first love yourself. But try as I might, I have always allowed the louder tapes (from others I might add) to dominate my thinking about what is/was wrong with me rather than what is right. I need to shake this stinkin' thinkin'! I am reading a delightful book right now, Nora Ephron wrote, I Feel Bad About My Neck and other Thoughts on Being a Woman and I laugh until I start to think about the text. I am having some better thoughts these days in response to me. First, I feel really good about exercising at least once every day and with the primary goal of exercising twice every day. I feel good about the sweat and the burn that sharpens my thinking. I feel good that I take the initiative to go do it and when I am finished with the 35 minutes, I have done it! It is not a habit and I am not certain it will ever become a habit, but for now, it is what I do and I feel good about it. I have several young friends who are running marathons and I applaude them for their efforts. My marathon is exercising every day for the rest of my life. By the way, today I will break the 300 mile point in my exercise goal for August 27 - October 31.
I also feel good about my legs. I have great legs. They are not cross hatched with spider veins like some of my peers. They are not covered with hair. I remember that about my age, my mom stopped shaving her legs. Gross! And this morning when I was putting on stockings I did some further investigation. I have always had well developed calves. I started dancing when I was four and didn't stop the lessons and performances until I was 16. In order to put the pounds "on point", I had to have strong muscles in my calves (don't really like the plural form cause it alludes to cows-oh well). Back to this morning. I can now take two hands and keep my fingers touching all the way up to the knee. Now granted, I won't insure my legs like Ann Miller, but I love my legs.

Friday, October 17, 2008

16 Sticks of Butter

Oh my goodness, my life is a roller coaster. Yesterday I scheduled surgery to fix the port on November 3 and today Thomas's scale showed 211.5! My BMI has moved to the bottom most spot on the morbidly obese chart. I am less than 12 pounds to legal on my driver's license and I now wear a size 8 shoe. Numbers are a constant on my mind. I think I should post a picture taken last weekend as even though the top is white, I do look so much healthier. No, I will wait until next week and then that will be my two month shot.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

A Bump in the Road

Just got home from Sioux Falls and my appointment with Dr. Glatt. It was my day to get my first fill. The good news is that I weighed 218 on the scale in Dr. Glatt's office and that is 8 pounds since September 17 (28 days or an average if 2 pounds a week). That is just great. The bad news is that my port is trying to flip over or according to the X-ray, be as elusive to the needle as it can be. Tracy tried to get it and so did Dr. Glatt in his office but they worried the port had flipped and the tubing had a kink. So Dr. Glatt said he wanted to get a floroscope (real time X-ray) so he knew what he was dealing with. I prayed all the way over to X-ray and when he inserted the needle again, he said " that little bugger" and announced that he was able to insert the needle and take out fluid and insert 3 ccs of saline. He had me sit up and drink water to see if all was OK. It was and he was going to add a bit more but when I laid back down, the port started moving again and he couldn't inject the needle. Now all of this sounds horrible but really I only felt the pressure and the nerves were far worse than anything. So the conclusion is that Dr. Glatt doesn't want me to have to go through this experience again. I will be scheduled for surgery to open the incision where the port is, they will push the tubing back into the cavity where it has worked its way out, and re-attach the port so that it doesn't move around. If I didn't have so much flab around that area it wouldn't be so difficult to feel but all I can do is work on that. I am lucky to have such a fine surgeon and will await the call from Nurse Tammy to schedule one more operation this year. I think I jinxed myself by telling Vince a few weeks ago that I was not having any more surgeries. We laughed on the drive home about having something to "blog" about.

A Week with My Family

I guess I have to admit that spending a week with the family comes before writing on my blog. I have eaten right (while watching others eat a variety of previously loved morsels), exercised all but one day, and had a delightful time with all. Allison really helped me with the closet issues. I sent my best "too big" clothes back to the cities with her in hopes of recouping some cash from Craig's list. The ladies went shopping at the local clothing store and I went in just to be sociable. To my great surprise, I can wear some of the togs now. I bought a size 18 winter coat that fits but will be even better with a few months. Again Allison, Vicki, and Gayle were finding things and I was trying clothes on and getting their expert opinon about the "looks". That was fun. We had family pictures taken while everyone was in town for Dayton's baptism. I can tell I don't look as chubby and it was my idea to wear white shirts and jeans. I know white isn't the most flattering but the pictures are so nice. It has been 49 days since my surgery (seven weeks ago today). I have an appointment with Dr. Glatt today so I suppose I will be writing again this evening about that. I forgot to write my loss for last week was two sticks of butter (that sounds more than 1/2 pound). I had an appointment with Georgia that was so enjoyable. She and I talked about food issues and she also gave me a newspaper article from the New York Times on bariatric surgery and what it takes. I weighed 220 on her scales. Then I had a follow-up appointment with Dr. Barth, the endocrinologist. He was happy with the thyroid marker he takes for the post cancer observation. He said we needed to lower the dosage of my thyroid because of the weight loss. I will have more blood work in six months as the dosage might need to be modified as I lose more pounds.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Even My Shoes Are Getting Sloppy

I can't believe what is happening. My dress (work) shoes are getting to feel too big! I know my pants are baggy and my shirts are beginning to droop, but shoes? I wish I knew someone who wears an 8 and 1/2 that could use some shoes. This is a great problem to have because for the past 20 years, I loved to buy shoes. It is was the department where I didn't have to pay more for a product than other people and there isn't a separate department for shoes for obese people. I used to say things like "the fat lady store". My first experience with clothes that were different was when I was a young (notice I didn't say "little") girl and I had to find HUSKY jeans. I can remember the volume at which the clerk would say "husky". It seems like I have number games going on in my head all of the time. If I have 110 pounds to lose then I can celebrate losing one fourth of my weight when I reach 27 1/2 pounds which could be this week. That doesn't seem possible. I get chills when I think about that remarkable accomplishment. Six weeks from surgery today. It makes 55 pounds seems attainable as well. "I can do all things through Him that strengthens me."

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

It is only Tuesday

It is only Tuesday and it seems like a lifetime since I weighed last Friday. I am finding that is harder to eat cold food (like leftovers) than it is to eat the same item warm. John and Linda were here visiting us this weekend and after a wonderful drive around the area, we ended up at Ruby Tuesday for a late lunch. I asked for a "to go" box when she brought my sandwich and carefully cut it in half. I ate slowly and really enjoyed the hamburger, half of the half of a bun, and the lettuce, tomato, and cheese. No problem! However, four hours later when I tried to eat the rest for supper, I couldn't get it to go down. The same thing happened with an egg wrap last week. Warm fine, cold later just not going to happen. Interesting. I can't believe that I have gone almost 250 miles exercising. It adds up when you do it twice a day. I will see the nutritionist on Thursday and I hope it is Georgia! It will be fun to celebrate my successes with her.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Fear of Mr. Scale

I had an overpowering fear walking into the Rec this morning. For what reason? I have followed the diet (what I really mean is I have been eating healthy), exercised every day at least once and twice all but two evenings when my knee was really hurting, and drinking the amount of water needed. So, in I went on this beautiful fall morning. Thomas set up the scale and the digital numbers flashed and low and behold it read 216! I was pumped and quickly said 1 and a half pounds but when Thomas went to the chart, he said, "No, 2 and a half pounds!" That is ten more sticks of butter. I can't really express how happy I am. I feel great and my body seems to be cooperating. It truly is a new life for me. Twelve weeks until Christmas and 16 pounds to lose. I wonder if there is any chance that I could weigh 200 pounds by my 62nd birthday? That is nine weeks away. I have blown my exercise goal away. I will have to change that in November. I pray I never lose this desire to be healthier.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Five Weeks Out From Surgery

It doesn't seem possible that five weeks have gone by since my surgery. People ask me how I feel and I have to say "I feel like a million dollars." That's not saying much when you consider the economic crisis our country is facing. I went to a meeting today and the candy, snack bars, and soda sitting on a nearby table didn't even bother me. I only exercised this morning as I have so much work to catch up on. I have reports, grants, a presentation, and just general everyday things that are pressing. Normally I would eat my way through this time but instead, I am choosing to take a break and write in my blog. I wore a new pair of cropped pants today that Allison picked out for me. I felt quite slim in them. I can tell the inches are coming off. When I went to see Diane yesterday she decided to do some blood work on me. My total cholesterol was 156 and my tricylcerides were 93. Wish Vince could have these numbers. Hoping to lose at least a pound on Friday.