My Banded Time

Saturday, April 23, 2011

It's My Birthday Tomorrow and I Feel Sad...

I'm going to be 47 years old tomorrow.  I'm unsure why but I feel sad, but these might be some of the factors:

1)  Not Near Goal At ALL-I went clothes shopping and I realize I'm not thin yet and have a ways to go....I had a dream going into surgery 9/2010 that I'd be thin and normal by my birthday.  I didn't reach that benchmark...I still have a long way to go.
2)  Ugly Business Trip Flashbacks-During the business trip there were mirrors all over my was depressing to see every imperfection, in really clear detail 360 degrees!  Again reaffirming that I have a long way to go.
3)  Ungrateful Kids-I took my two kids to Washington DC to see the sites today...they wanted to stay home and watch video games and was the last place they wanted to be.  I love my kids, I love being with them and there were great moments today but there were a lot of moments of..."get me back to my Nintendo and air conditioned house".
4)  Lethargic Husband-All my husband did was lay on the couch all day.
5)  The Neighbors-I want to sell my house but my next door neighbors had their house burn down a year ago and they have been haggling with insurance for the last 18 months.  They aren't the most ethical people and I think they are trying to commit insurance fraud...our house is really nice but it is hard to sell a house that sits next to a burnt mini mansion.  I want to move and sell our house while the buyer's market is still great.
6)  My Husband Again-I'm pretty sure my husband didn't prepare anything for my birthday...I'm almost 47 but still a baby about this...I grew up in a family of girls where birthdays were a huge deal.
7)  Helicopter Moms-My sons are in a special advanced program at their elementary school...a lot of the moms are very involved in the school activities, policies.  One of the moms is trying to get my son's 4th grade teacher reprimanded and fired because she feels that the teacher doesn't like her son.  A lot of well educated moms, with former high profile careers.  A lot of people only have one or two children and had them late in life.  Now they are channelling all their energies into their kids.  I'm proud of my kids for being in this program and working hard; but some of the moms in this program are nuts.  I'll be glad when summer rolls around.

Please excuse the "down" post...I'm TOM and I'm still tired from my Philadelphia business trip.

I know Easter is tomorrow and it is a holiday of spiritual renewal and blessings...I'm hoping that when I wake up tomorrow...I feel it.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Sweet Spot...6.5 cc I think-What is yours?

This last fill has been hard but great...Great in that I think I've reached my sweet spot, hard in that I've been throwing up a lot.  Now I understand why they give you such conservative fills each time because it gives you time to adjust to modify your eating habits.  To be honest for my last fills I've felt very little except when I'd try to eat bread or overeat a lot.  Now I feel restriction at about 3/4 to 1 cup of food.  And I feel a jolt if I eat too fast or drink to fast.  I noticed a couple things about managing the band:

1) Stretching-Stretching your pouch with sneaky overeating is easy...
2)  Sliders-When I'm struggling with a fill, I get hungry and try to fill myself up with sliders...
3)  Getting Back into Shape-after If I felt as though I've stretched my pouch a couple meals of liquids helps me get my restriction back.
4)  Learning Curve-learning how to eat properly has been a learning curve for's been hard for me to break bad habits.


To my wonderful support group...have a wonderful Easter.  It's weird I haven't met any of you but I feel a general sense of appreciation and affection for you!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Watching the Thin

I was on a business trip in Philadelphia with my boss...about 5' 1" and 100 lbs.  And we met with our primary client 5'2" and about 100 lbs also.  I ate with them regularly and realize that they really deserve their figures and that they eat like bandsters or more accurately the band helps us eat like thin people:

1)  They ate slowly
2)  They ate protein
3)  They ate small portions
4)  They tasted delicious foods but they never over ate
5)  They drink lots of water but sip
6)  They do not drink water during meals

Mirror Mirror on the Wall

I went on a business trip to Philadelphia and the suite had mirrors all around...Literally the bathroom was all mirrors except for the ceiling.  I feel like I've come so far but the brutal reality of seeing every aspect of my body made me feel sad and "still fat"...and a bit frustrated.  (I was also pre TOM).  I was depressed thinking about me 15 years ago versus me today...Then....I realized....

1)  I've been getting smaller every month since my surgery 9/2011
2)  I have changed my eating habits
3)  I exercise
4)  And if I keep this up for the long run....


Monday, April 18, 2011

Found my Green Pukey Green Spot

Since my last fill I've been feeling restricted which is great but food has been coming up.  I really think I need to focus on chewing, chewing, chewing.  I'm trying hard to find that balance and leave the pukey green zone.

My kids are on spring break...we have been having a great time.  They are 10 and 8 and hilarious and fun.  However, I have a business trip to Philly and my husband will cover for me Wednesday.  Things are crazy at work so I've been working a bit from home too.  My boss promises that my next vacation will not interrupted...It's OK, I was going to have a staycation with the kids anyways since we are going to be traveling a lot in the summer and fall so I'll be able to save my leave for that.

Hope you are doing well...and fighting for your health!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

My Ultimate Goal? Not to be Defined by my fat-A Head Game

Being obese is exhausting and time consuming:

1)  You spend time taking care of the health morbidities caused by obesity
2)  You feel bad about the way you look to society/others
3)  It's hard to find clothes that fit.  And finding clothes that fit and make you feel OK takes a lot of time. 
4)  You tend to obsess about food/diet all the time.

I'm threw with that!!!  With this band, I'm really trying to change my behavior:

1) Eat balanced, nutritious foods on a regular a pattern and rthym that I can sustain. 
2)  Being able to ingest 1000-1200 kcals of good food by naturally choosing good foods
3)  Chewing carefully out of habit, not gulping food.
4)  Drinking water throughout the day habitually versus force feeding/drinking
5)  Being active naturally versus forcing myself to move.

When I look at the band as a behavior modification tool it becomes so much easier for me.  Some days are better than others but if I can sustain this for the long term I know I'll be OK.  By no means is it easy breaking these horrible habits that I've built into my life for years...but the band has helped so much.

Thanks for listening.

Friday, April 8, 2011

It's a Numbers Game: Who Counts Calories? I do...

After my band surgery,  I had an immediate weight loss and then it stabilized and tapered...and I asked why...I was eating a lot more healthfully and much less than before the band.  I kept with the 3 cups of high quality food, less sugar.  But as I started tracking on and started analyzing my habits, I realize that my body needs less kcals that the prescribed 1200kcals recommended.  To lose weight I need to sustain a net kcal intake of about 1000kcal to lose 1-2 lbs per week...more if I'm exercising.  I'm not trying to be eating disorderish or controversial...The band has just caused me to take a more personalized look at my body, my diet and my bodies requirements.  One body is not the same as the next.  Each body and lifestyle is so unique.  For instance:

1)  Job-my job and lifestyle is not strenuous, most of the time I'm on the phone, reading documents, writing documents or I'm sitting in meetings.  This is different from a stay at home mom who is constantly on the go, running outside errands...or a postman who walks a route of 15 miles during the day.

2)  Thyroid-I had a majority of it removed in December.  I'm stabilizing my levels through medication.  I feel as though my body is adjusting.

3)  Age-I'm almost you get older, you need less calories for a variety of reasons.
4)  Muscle Mass- I think I've lost a lot of since having babies...I'm trying to gain more muscle via strength training.

When I talk about 1000kcal, I'm talking about protein rich and healthy foods.

Thanks for listening!

Monday, April 4, 2011

Where is Your Port?

I went in for a fill two weeks ago and the new NP could not find my turns out that it was right by my belly button.  I'm a relatively new bandster...but my surgeon came in and explained to her that it's easier to find and easier to manipulate as weight comes off and is less lightly to bulge out.  So my scarring pattern is different from others that I've seen shared on the web...I have a small incision below my breast and two on the sides of my tummy...these 3 small incisions were really small and are almost invisible now 7 months later.  I do have a 1 inch incision near my belly button though.  The NP had never seen that before...usually the port is much higher.

Just curious.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Losing My Fat Inhibitions

There is something about being fat that is really inhibiting.  But there is something about weight loss that is very liberating...No I'm not dancing on top of bars in a bikini top and daisy dukes (LOL)...but I just feel more free socially and professionally and I felt that two girls dancing on top of a bar reflects my new found freedom:

-Accepting Social Invitations-I've got great friends and family who always ask me and my family to do things...there are several times where I declined because I didn't feel good about how I looked or felt that I didn't have anything appropriate to wear or felt horrible about how I was looking.  It was friends and family love me and just want to see me.  I know this in my heart and I'm so grateful.

-Feeling Good About Getting Dressed-When at my heaviest I was really limited in my wardrobe and at phases I just gave up about my appearance and being a woman.  If anything I just dressed to be clean and presentable.  I lost all vanity and it really stuck out compared to my very fashion forward friends/family.

-Professionally-It was really hard for me to verbalize my ideas and pitch my ideas the same way I do now.  Being direct was being difficult too.  I'm in engineering and management, I think some of my feelings of inhibition are self generated but there is weight discrimination too, especially the sales and management component.  But I think a combination of the two really kept me back or that I had to flip over backwards to compensate for the bad initial impression I might be giving of the fat consultant.

Now I know this sounds so vain and self absorbed but but the beauty of weight loss is that it has made me feel less self conscious and less pre occupied about myself...I'm not wondering if my Armani, Designer clad counterparts are judging my stretch pants and elasticized skirts and old woman outifts.  I'm not wondering if my family is worried or talking about my excessive weight gain behind my back.  I'm not wondering if the client is looking at the signs of my unhealthiness versus just interacting with me and listening to my ideas.  LOSING WEIGHT HAS MADE ME very present in the present moment and is allowing me to enjoy those moments.  I can enjoy being with friends, family, and professional engagements.  I don't worry before hand about what I'm going to wear and which outfit makes me look the less fat.  I just go and I'm there and I'm in the moment...there is great beauty in that.  I still have a ways to go but I feel that the more I lose the easier my life so many ways.

Thanks for listening.


Update:  By no means am I thin or at my perfect BMI...I'm just making progress with my weight and my mind.  I felt trapped and unable to lose any type of weight for a long I'm really glad that things are working out with the band.  I really feel like it was a great decision.

Friday, April 1, 2011

The Band and My Career

Missed blogging and reading-that is why I'm blogging 3 times today-I'm trying to reconnect to my blog family community.

After the craziness of the last couple of months/weeks, I'm getting recognition for my work and was offered a transfer/promotion of sorts to be a Principal in another consulting group within our firm...flattering...I'm not sure that I want the added pressure right now since my kids are young but still it was nice to be recognized and asked by someone I respected.  

Regardless, its still a great NSV because one of the reasons I got the band was for my career.  I perceived the weight as a handicap in my field where personal presentation is so critical.  I make a lot of presentations/pitch ideas.  I felt really stifled by my weight and my inability to control my escalating weight.   I don't feel that way anymore and that is a great NSV.  I never felt unsuccessful but I felt really inhibited about my weight and  that the way I felt about myself was really undermining my confidence and showing.  I am so thankful that the band because I feel that my true skills and talents can emerge more directly without being masked by my appearance.

Thanks for listening.

A Great and Motivating and Illuminating Blog Post

Sarah at Weighing In has a unique view...she is a WLS patient and she works in a WLS office.  She sees both sides of the coin and it is very illuminating and refreshing.

She had a great blog on Bariatric Mind Games  Bariatric Mind Games    This article really shook me up...and made me think of how proactive and committed I was as a WLS patient...Truly I was waiting for things to fix themselves, feared failure etc...But I saw myself in a mirror when I read her post.  Here is an excerpt:

A lot of the patients we saw today were failing. I was mad at some of them.  I mean, the excuses, the ignorance! I'm not perfect, but I know when I'm not eating healthy or working out as hard as I can...some patients just have an excuse for everything or they're either just really ignorant...and they're just in shock over how they could have possibly gained weight (when they are holding a full sugar Gatorade in their hand and talking about eating cheese dip every night).  Part of me thinks, how can you go through something as serious as bariatric surgery and still seem to have no idea what good food choices are (or are not)?!!  I want to grab them and shake the same time I know how it feels to get stuck in bad choices and feel like a I also want to hug them. It's hard! and I can't spend as much time as I'd really like to spend with each one, encouraging them and trying to give them tips and help....not to toot my own horn, but I'm actually pretty smart about nutrition, even though I don't always follow my own advice!!

I've been this patient and it just shook me to the core and really helped me to critically and honestly look at my choices everyday.  Sometimes I would just be easy on myself because I ate a lot better after WLS than I did before.  And I'm sure I was one of these patients where the staff would wonder what the heck I was really doing at home...

But to achieve the kind of losses I want, I needed to make a re commitment of sorts.  After reading this, my mind clicked into gear the journey became a bit easier and more successful.  This is not a soap box blog, just a personal reflection about coming clean with myself 

Excellent Blog on Recent Bad Band Press! Read it Don't Get Discouraged!!!

Check out Sarah's blog at Weighing In.  She works at a WLS Office and she is a successful bandster herself.  The recent bad band press is skewed...her blog puts some perspective on it.  Strangely enough, I wasn't too swayed by the recent bad press because the band has really started to work well for me.  I was an initial slow loser but I also had a thyroid removal two months after my band and was adjusting to thyroid meds, while adjusting to my band.  I finally feel like I'm getting the hang of the band and the new lifestyle.

 I've lost 6 lbs in the last week...but more importantly I'm feeling much healthier.  I'm so thankful.  And at the same time I'm trying to be good about following the "rules" and not abusing my band.

I'm so thankful for the is the discipline I needed.