Hard to believe almost 6 weeks gone since surgery! It feels like it happened yesterday. But here I am - done with all my "special" diet periods and into my permanent Stage 4 as of yesterday! Not that I've actually eaten anything reserved for Stage 4 yet - I'm still mostly eating the same old stuff. Chicken (dark meat because it's easier), cottage cheese, yogurt, cheese... I've started eating cottage cheese with fruit in it, so that's something! And the occasional protein bar, though it takes me two separate meals to eat just one. Plus, they're almost not worth the trouble - Sadie (the doggo) likes them better than I do, and she is a dedicated beggar. (Same with the cheese, really...)
Some things reserved for Stage 4 include steak, ground beef... basically any meat that isn't chicken, and all shellfish. Other things like pasta, doughy bread, rice, are not precisely forbidden, but not encouraged. And I'm planning to avoid all of them anyway. (Funny story: Leah had cheese and whole wheat crackers yesterday for her very nutritious dinner. After she was done there was like, a crumb of cracker with a bit of cheese on it on her plate, and I very daringly ate it. I felt ready to join a biker gang after that - I was living dangerously! That cracker crumb was my first solely carb food since surgery.)
What I'm actually looking forward to - what I'm going to try tonight - is a meal consisting of more than one food item. A friend is coming over this evening, and she's making Indian butter chicken; we are supplying broccoli. I'm going to eat at least one tiny broccoli crown alongside the chicken if it kills me. I know it's a weird thing to be craving, but broccoli was a staple in my pre-op weight loss plan, and I really miss it! Plus, fiber. Fiber is good!
In other news, I'm doing pretty well here in month two. I'm just a week or so in, and I've lost 8 lbs (down to 273 \o/). I've been doing a ton of walking - in fact, yesterday I totally overdid it:
I know that can't compete with what some of you people are doing, but that is definitely the longest time and distance I've been on my feet since I was like... ten. I was inspired by my new sneakers, which arrived at around 2pm - they're Scarpa approach sneakers, and they feel awesome - they're so comfortable! Definitely the best walking shoes I've ever owned. (Link: https://www.amazon.com/Scarpa-Womens-Crux-Approach-Shoe/dp/B00S1GWK5S. They're a little hot pink, nothing to be done about it, but I still found them worth it. Leah has had a pair for a year now and she loves hers too.)
One thing that is becoming harder and harder for me to deal with is not knowing whether I'll have dumping syndrome. I just really want to know! I'm not sure why I'm obsessing about this; maybe I just want to know if it's a crutch I can lean on if/when head hunger gets the best of me. But the only way to test it out is to eat something with sugar, and I don't even know how much sugar I would need to eat, and what if that triggered a craving? I don't want to risk it. But I want to know! Ugh. Curiosity kills the Kio, they say - right?
Beyond that curiosity, I haven't had any trouble resisting things that are bad for me. Mostly I'm just trying to get in enough protein each day. In spite of an interesting meal where I ate 5.3 oz of cottage cheese (my guess is I ate it so slowly part of it had digested before I finished), I still have trouble getting in more than 2-3 oz of food at a time normally. I can't handle the shakes anymore - they're just gross, far too sweet and I'm so sick of them I can't stand it, plus they are now hit or miss in terms of whether they stay down or come back up. That means I'm forced into many small meals throughout the day to get what I need without getting "full". 2 oz of yogurt here, 2 oz of cottage cheese there, an egg over here... half a protein bar over there.... And in between I have to drink, drink, drink to get my water in. So with all that going on, plus three calcium chews a day... I feel like I am constantly putting something in my stomach. It would be awesome if some of it could be a vegetable now and then... but I know the pouch will loosen up a bit eventually and I'll be able to eat them eventually! (If you all knew me before surgery, you'd laugh at me mourning vegetables... so not the type!)
In non-weight loss news, I've also been doing a lot of decorating, and pre-decorating, for Hallowe'en. Hallowe'en is kind of a big deal around my house! It's not even about food - it's 100% about putting on a good show for the kids in the neighborhood. Every year I make window decorations for all the front windows (6 of them) and the front door. This year I'm also doing the back doors (2 french doors) and carving a pumpkin. And we're having a potluck for a bunch of friends on Saturday, so I need everything done by then, and it all needs to look as good inside as it does outside. So there's a LOT to do.
I'll close this out with a sample of this year's lower front windows - the only ones I've done so far:
I'm particularly fond of the spider. And I kind of like the inside better than the outside for this one.