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On the Other Side

Monday, November 16, 2015

So, I know I've been gone for a while. No worries! Not dead yet! (...think I'll go for a walk emoticon )

Things have been moving a little fast and furious, so let me see if I can give you all the rundown.

January 26, 2015 - Weighed in at the doctor's at 460.6. Only 6 pounds off my heighest ever recorded weight - which was recorded back in 2004 when I was on my way to try to get gastric bypass surgery. This doctor's check-in was to start a insurance required pre-op diet that would last 12 months and require me to lose 10% of my body weight to qualify for pre-certification for surgery.

The next few months were difficult. The weight moved slowly off or not at all. We're talking 3 pounds A MONTH. I tried working out some once I was cleared from my podiatrist (stupid tendonitis). I was doing what I knew worked. It wasn't working.

August 2015 - I go low carb. Finally the weight starts to budge. I knew I had been paleo for a reason! My body responds best to lean animal proteins and healthy fats. Look at a carb...gain a pound. This was also right about the time that my husband landed his new job and through a little fancy research of my own, I figured out that their requirements for surgery were not as strict. For them, it was 6 months of supervised (or 90 days in an accelerated plan) and "don't gain weight". I had already fulfilled those requirements, so we switched insurance companies and I called the surgeon to move forward.

EKG, Lung Testing, Fasting Labs, Endoscopy, Echo, Stress Test, Psych Test...

Then, fighting with the Psych's office to release my report (a MONTH later) and fighting with the Echo lab to send the right paperwork...

Finally, cleared for surgery.

October 27 - 437.8 - Started pre-op liquid diet
November 2 - 419.8 - Day of Surgery

I spent 2 days in the hospital. All my hard work at the gym apparently gave my doc a hard time. He had a lot more muscle to dig through than normal and the surgery took longer than usual. Which, in turn, caused my kidneys to begin malfunctioning due to dehydration and landed me an extra day in the hospital.

The first week was HELL. Like absolute and utter hell. Full liquids. Everything tasted gross. I'm strugging to drink protein shakes right now because the thought of them makes me gag. I hate chicken broth and want it to die. It was a LONG liquid diet phase and a LOT of pain.

Last week I went to get my drain taken out 8 days post-op. I had a severe panic attack and nearly passed out in the chair with the nurse. NOT FUN. I did a lot of sleeping and then I would walk around upstairs (helps prevent blood clots), get tired and go back to sleep.

This past week was just a tiny bit easier. I've started to feel better. My tummy still hurts like hell. There's a pull when I sit the wrong way. My stamina is still gone with the wind. Oh, and I was having problems almost immediately with low blood sugar. Last week I saw my regular doctor and asked them to lower my BP dosage. Yesterday I had to make the decision to come off them completely.

So - first success from surgery - no more hypertension.

I'm back at work today. I don't know how long this will last. I'm already in a lot of pain. I did finally get to take a pain med when I got into work but I do have to be careful driving on them.

Getting ready for work is a huge chore. I need breaks after everything right now. The first shower I took at home I started crying after 2 minutes and I had to go lay down. Today I can take the shower, but I still need the break after before I get dressed or do anything else. After I dress, I need another break. I'm struggling.

That being said, I'm walking lighter.

Today was 2 weeks post-op weigh in. I am 397.4 pounds. I've lost 40+ pounds in 3 weeks. I feel incredibly light. My stomach feels higher and tighter. I feel like most of that was lost in my face, but I did notice my boots came up higher on my calves. I'm not as wide as I was a few weeks ago. I'm still struggling with all of this mentally and physically. It's both going too fast and not fast enough. But I'm better.

I'm pretty sure I'll be happy I did this once it heals. Once I can get back to the gym. Once the tools I already know how to use actually work this time. I'm about 95% sure I'll forget these first few weeks and be happy to be alive. But, for now...

It's difficult. A change I've noticed...I've gone from thinking, "I hate life" to thinking "Life hates me right now!" *lol* I don't know what to make of that, but it's interesting.

I'm on soft/pureed foods right now. Hummus is currently my favorite thing on the earth. I'm using Isopure instead of protein shakes because they just taste like melted popsicles and I get two servings in a bottle for a total of 40g of protein in one day. I'll be on this diet until I'm one month out...then I can start introducing regular food again. My first few things to try (because the cravings for them are ridiculous right now!) -- salad and pickles. All I've wanted for EVER it seems like is SALAD and PICKLES. *lol*

Thanksgiving should be interesting this year. I'm thinking of making a turkey stew and then putting it in the blender. I'm going to try first with some beef stew tonight that Shane's cooking.

Once this is done, the goal will be:
Probably close to about 1000 calories a day
60-80g protein per day
low carb all the way
avoid rice and bread and popcorn for at least a full year, if possible
low sugar (no more than 10g per serving)

The funny thing about WLS that you don't believe when people tell you at first? Your tastes change. There are some things I didn't much care for that taste like heaven now. And vice versa. I'm hoping I get my taste for protein shakes back, but we shall see (I'm trying one today).

So, that's where I'm at. It's quite impossible to set weight loss goals because I have no idea what to expect. I just keep plugging along and nearly every day I lose another pound or two. Some days I stay the same, but the next day I lose again. I'm going to go back to weighing every week on Mondays and then monthly on the 2nd of every month (my surgerversary as well as my anniversary!).

Any questions?
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    I have been looking for this update! So happy for you that you are doing better this week. I think any major surgery knocks the wind out of a person for at least 6 weeks. Hang in there love, it will get better. 40 lbs in 3 weeks? How awesome is that? Pretty darned awesome, that's what! I look forward to reading about your progress as you get more of your normal amazing energy back
    1997 days ago
    I am so excited for you! I have been worried about you because you were so quiet on Spark. But it seems like while you were quiet all of your plans and dreams were falling into place! I know you still have a long journey of liquid diets and other such fun things ahead of you, but I know you have got this! Please do keep us updated! emoticon
    1998 days ago
  • ERIN1128
    OMG Esther, you finally had the surgery, that is so exciting!!!! I know it's rough right now, but I'm sooooo proud of you for continuing to fight until you finally got it. Keep us posted and hang in there. So happy for you!!!!
    1998 days ago
  • no profile photo CD4764832
    That is amazing Ester! I wish you nothing but success!
    1998 days ago
  • no profile photo CD10795864
    Wow! I am really glad for you! I do think of you sometimes and was wondering if you had the surgery.

    Please keep up on Sparkpeople as you can. I look forward to reading your blogs.
    1998 days ago
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    Disclaimer: Weight loss results will vary from person to person. No individual result should be seen as a typical result of following the SparkPeople program.