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About this blog

RnY surgery scheduled for Dec 11, 2015! From pre-op to post-living.

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VicWytch

Almost to goal!

Well, I certainly didn't expect this to happen so soon. I am 8 months out and only 2 LBS (!!!!) away from *my* goal of 130 lbs. I'm pretty amazed at this process, honestly, and a little fearful for the future. I know that I will probably weigh less than 130 lbs in the next few months, but I don't want to go too far. I'm 5'2" so presently I'm at the high range of the 'normal' BMI now. I have been 120lbs before and I was WAY too skinny and looked unhealthy. Even now people are saying "don't lose too much" and "you look great but don't lose anymore". 

I have my next NUT/doc appointment in another month and my topic of conversation will be about maintenance. Is it too soon to start thinking about that? Everything I've read has people adding back in 'good fats' to maintain, such as nuts, avocado, cheese, etc. But these are foods I already eat--I've never gone the low-fat route on this journey as I believe good fats are essential to a healthy body. My normal blood work proves this to be true FOR ME. YMMV.

Some things I've noticed at the 8 month mark: 

  • My appetite has not returned yet. There are times when I 'crave' certain foods, but I've not experienced hunger like I used to. I do notice when I have low blood sugar and need to eat, however. Same jitters as before.
  • I cannot tolerate chicken or turkey. At all. I've tried at various times and I still feel as if it gets stuck at top of my pouch. This saddens me greatly as I feel most of the food choices and recipes center around chicken. For substitutions, I eat shrimp (probably more than I should), ground beef, regular beef steak, white fish, tuna, and pork is ok.
  • I'm still not getting more than 900 calories a day. I try and try to add more, but I just can't do it. This worries me.
  • I absolutely love the Premier Protein shakes and usually use it as creamer in my coffee every morning. (My fav is the new Banana flavor and Chocolate of course.) This also means I've been able to cut the Splenda and Half & Half that used to be the staple. I think it's a better substitute.
  • While I haven't added any breads, pastas or rice in my diet at all, I have tried a few things: wheat thins with tuna salad, for example. Rice noodles with veggies and cod. When I was in Amsterdam a few weeks ago for work, I tried 1/2 slice of their brown bread (brod) with salted butter. (Yes, it was delicious.) But again, I notice that my pouch fills up quickly so I still tend to focus my meals on the protein first.
  • My body is entirely different than it was when I weighed this over 15 years ago. My butt sags, as does my arms and tummy. And I wear clothing very differently--which has been eye-opener. Before when I would look for the right pair of jeans to fit my booty, now I fit into every size 8 I try on, as there is no booty left to stuff in!! :-)
  • Second-hand stores are my friends. Goodwill has been a lifesaver, as has ThredUp.com which sells nice used clothing for very cheap.

If anyone has any advice or words of wisdom, would be very glad to hear them!!!

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VicWytch

Today was my 6 month post-op doctor's visit. It was the first time I had seen Dr. Hamad since my ER visit in February. I have had regular check-ins with Nurse Judy, but I was anxious to hear what Dr. Hamad would say.

I'm pleased to report that I am down 76 lbs from my heaviest! My BMI is 26.9 and my doctor says I'm doing great! When I asked her what she had in mind for my goal weight, she said they encourage us to be lower than a 25 BMI to be considered healthy. I asked her if my goal weight of 130 lbs was realistic (I'm 5'2"), and she said of course it is. But that my body would start to slow down losing weight as I get closer to its ultimate place. I asked her how do I 'maintain' once I'm there, and she said "well, it's just a matter of calories in and calories out at that point". Your tool does wonders but your new lifestyle is really the goal.

She wanted to know what my exercise consisted of, what I was eating, if I was getting in my protein and water. I told her that chicken and I had a horrible relationship because every time I eat it, it gets stuck and I have to throw up. She sympathized but said I may never be able to eat chicken in the way I had before. That makes me sad since it is such a staple protein.

AND I asked her if my hair loss will ever stop, and she assured me it would. "You won't go bald, I promise. And if you hadn't told me, I never would have noticed." That makes me feel better, but I really wish I could stop pulling handfuls of hair out of my brush every morning. 

All in all, feeling great and moving great (even with a bad arthritic knee). I will keep repeating it ad nauseum: best decision I ever made.

VicWytch

3 month mark

It's been almost 13 weeks since my RNY on 12/11/2015, and I had my 3 month check-up with my doctor's office/NUT on Tuesday. I weighed in at 173, which is 50 lbs down from my highest weight. AND I was finally allowed to eat SALAD, and I've taken advantage of that. I had no idea how much I missed the crispiness of romaine lettuce. Sigh. It is the littlest things.

The one thing that confused me was the summary that was given to me says I should be intaking about 1100-1400 calories a day. !?!?!? I'm barely making 800. I just cannot eat that much. I have no idea how I'm supposed to be low-fat, low-carb, high-protein when I have to hit that. I'm just too full after 2 oz of chicken, 1 oz of romaine and some cheese. If anyone has any ideas, please let me know. I don't use protein shake supplements as I'm able to get in 50-60g of protein per day through meals. If I do have a shake, it's a meal replacement because I'm running around and not wanting to stop somewhere.

All in all, feeling the best I've felt in a LONG TIME. I'm getting enough sleep, the vitamins I'm taking seem to be giving me good energy and I have a pretty sunny outlook. 

VicWytch

I'm currently about 7 1/2 weeks out from gastric bypass, and I can say that I am finally feeling normal. I changed up my multi-vitamin (Eco Blast drink found at Costco), and my B12 (no more chewables, yuck) and my NUT wants me to get all my protein from food, not from supplements like shakes or powder. So I am doing ok in that department.

What I wasn't prepared for was a combination of dehydration and allergies. I was only getting in about 48 oz of water a day, and even that was difficult. So one night about a week ago, nothing was sitting right--I was vomiting everything I tried to get down, including water. The next morning I thought it would be a good time to start over, try to get in a protein shake in the morning as a breakfast supplement, and then my tuna salad for lunch, cheese stick for snack, etc. I vomited all that up too and when I called my doctor's office, it was strongly encouraged that I get into the ER. I drove there and they started an IV right away and ordered a CT scan. CT scan looked clear but they admitted me overnight to make sure I could keep down clear foods. The doctor asked if my vomit had mucus in it, and I said yes it was always mucus-y, and she thought I should add Zyrtec to my daily regime as well. As soon as I took Zyrtec in the hospital everything started feeling better. I could keep food down. The doc said that often post-nasal drip cannot be processed well by pouches and so it sits there making it upset.

Not a fun lesson to learn, but one I'm glad I caught early on. 

VicWytch

I haven't been on this forum much these past two weeks as I'm getting back to work after the surgery on Dec. 11 and the holidays.

I hit my 4 wks out on Jan 8 and weighed myself that morning and found a 197 on the scale!! The first time I've seen the Onederland in over ten years. So that's a total of 26 lbs from my highest weight when starting this journey.

I've been feeling alternately ok and weak. I get my protein in, and liquids, but I have absolutely no hunger so I have to push myself to eat my meals. I've found that a Premier Protein drink for breakfast is usually the easiest way for me to wake up. And I miss the taste of savory things so I made that delicious ricotta bake found on theworldaccordingtoeggface's blog and it was incredibly delicious. But the most I'm able to eat is about  a 1/2 c of food and since I'm still in the pureed stage, that means lots of yogurt, applesauce, cottage cheese, hummus, etc.

There is a pain in my right side, near a rib, and it's where the drain was. It hasn't gone away yet so the nurse recommended warm compresses/heating pad to help with the pain. I have my monthly follow-up appointment on Jan 11 so I'll have that checked out as well.

Hope everyone's journey has been going great!

VicWytch

Today has been good and bad. The good? Seeing the absolute excitement on my 5 yr old and 10 yr old at 7am as they bounced on our bed to get us up and downstairs to see what Santa brought. Having my in-laws over this afternoon for a big feast with way too many leftovers. Lounging and watching A Christmas Story and sports. 

The bad? Throwing up my vitamins this morning. Throwing up my lunch, which was 2-3 bites of smashed tuna fish and hummus. Feeling as if I had something stuck in my esophagus and not able to get it to go down. Being able to get my protein supplement down and apple juice, but nothing else. I don't know if this is something that every newbie to gastric bypass goes through or if I'm making really poor choices. I'm waiting allotted time to eat/drink, so I don't think that's it. I do know that I worked a bit too much getting this feast together and hoping it tastes ok, since I'm not able to eat any of it.

Will try eating again for dinner, and back to yogurt/baby food to see how that goes.

VicWytch

Follow-up visit was this morning--10 days post-op. Nurse Judy cleared me for phase 2 and I can't TELL you how excited I am to actually introduce food back in my routine...even if it's only 1 or 2 TBSPs. This means I get to go grocery shopping for milk (Lactaid), applesauce, yogurt, cottage cheese, baby food...yum yum yum.

I also got the sampler packet from Unjury and am eager to see how those taste! They have a nifty holidays recipe booklet that just came out with some delicious concoctions. I won't be able to drink caffeine or decaf with them, but a lot of the of the other stuff is fine.

VicWytch

Gas, gas and more gas

I'm now 4 days post-op with RnY and the gas was unrelenting today. Whether it was burping or farting (and I have to say good thing I went to the bathroom when 'I had to fart' cuz some of those weren't farts), my stomach area was like Laguardia airport during holiday season. Something coming or going...argggh.

I had to stay an extra day in the hospital because I didn't tolerate the barium GI stuff they gave me. Vomited nice white foam -- hey at least no blood, right? They put me back in iv, back on drip meds and let me rest overnight. Made a huge difference.

So now I'm at home and finding it difficult to get any motivation at all to walk around the house. My stitches hurt and my couch is so comfy. :)  But tomorrow I am actually going to attempt to bake cookies with my mother-in-law and my 5 year old. If it's too much at least she can finish it off. It's the little things, right?

 

VicWytch

I'm 4 days away from surgery and on my second day of the clear liquid diet. So far, so good, although I got really HANGRY this morning, and I've developed a bit of a headache. Might be sugar withdrawal though! I'm drinking, drinking, drinking water and slurping down that broth. Sugar-free jello has become my best friend, and fruit juices just don't taste the same watered-down.

Ah well, I know it will be over soon!

VicWytch

Had my pre-op appointment with my surgeon, Dr. Gisele Hamad, today at Magee. It was the first time I had seen her since May when I started this journey. She cleared me for surgery on the 11th and gave me final instructions and prescriptions for medications that I will need afterwards. I watched a video, again, about the risks and what to expect and some of it was news -- for example, I didn't realize that I needed to have a drain when I come home. I'm sure they will give more instructions about that. I was also surprised to hear no work for 4 weeks. I had expected 2 weeks, but not 4. I'm glad this is happening in December as I can work from home a bit AND I'll be off for the holidays.

We talked about my gall bladder. Whereas the physician assistant thought my doctor would take it out during the surgery, my doctor wasn't necessarily of that mindset. She said she would only take it out if it looked diseased, as it can create further complications during surgery. That was news -- I thought for sure they would just yank it out.

One thing I've noticed: repetition is good. Watching the videos, reading the material, talking to the surgeon team -- they keep repeating the same things and that is a good thing. It sticks in your head! 

Now, to prepare for my pre-surgery diet, I need to get to the grocery store and stock up on broth, sugar-free jello, fruit bars/popsicles, crystal light and fruit juice. To me that is going to be the hardest part --  not eating solid food for 5 days. I'll post about that next while I'm going through it.

VicWytch

After six months of the lifestyle program required by my insurance, I was given approval and a surgery date of Dec 11, 2015! And then about 4 weeks ago I came down with a major sinus infection, which is still wheedling out of my body. I'm nervous that my primary care doc won't clear me for surgery -- after my negative chest x-ray and elevated WBC count, he asked me to get another blood test this week to see if things have stableized. I am suppose to let the surgeon's office know two weeks prior to surgery (which will be Nov. 27--during Thanksgiving weekend) if there is an upper respiratory infection. 

Feeling a bit down about this. I really don't want my surgery delayed past the end of the year. I am ready now for this to happen!! I've prepared mentally, I've cut out caffeine, I've started chewing food slower and not drinking with meals...I haven't even given a thought about Thanksgiving and how I'm not going to be able to have seconds like usual because I'm super excited about a new life!! 

Ok. Positive thoughts only. Let's get through this week and see what happens!