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Six weeks

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delilas

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Howwww!? Week 6 already. So here's what's been going on. 
 
Finally feel I've gotten a hang of water and protein. Being able to hit 64 oz+ of water and 60 grams of protein finally got the scale moving again too (or the rain dance, or praying to the scale gods, yknow, whichever). This week I'll be adding in actual dedicated exercise rather than lapping the house or going to target to lap (which is horribly dangerous for my pocket).
 
I have a crazy craving for onions. Never been a major onion fan, but I'll be darned if I didn't cook at least 3 different dinners this week involving them because I just love the taste suddenly. 
 
Went to see the surgeon for my 1 month, and instead saw an NP who didn't listen to a word I said and was not at all familiar with my case. When I checked out, I told the girl for my two month, I expected to see the surgeon, and I wanted my case changed to a different NP (we follow with an NP starting normally with the six month one). She initially tried to say it wasn't possible, and I told her I wouldn't return for any further appointments unless I was reassigned. Magically, it became possible :D
 
Saw the nutritionist as well, although a different one than normal, and she also didnt know what was up and didn't know I'd been on Step 3 for a couple weeks, and even on telling her this, she didnt seem to know what to do except spend 30 minutes reviewing step 3 with me. Right now, I'm wholly not amused with the post-op program. 
 
I'm getting ready to return to work. I bought the bento that eggface recommends, because it's the only one that really has removable containers, and I want to be able to pack stuff that can be heated and stuff that doesnt need heated. It'll make getting 3-4 mini meals in during work so much easier. I've been testing a few things that will be easy to take (italian and deli rollups, all manner of leftovers, frittatas, etc) this week to make plans for what to take. I have one of the old style giant hospital insulated cups (most hospitals here stopped carrying them because theyre too heavy for older patients, but they sell them in the gift shop for 5 bucks, ha!). It's 32 ounces, so I feel it will help a lot in getting in fluids at my desk. 
 
They want me to eat through the day and take in a protein shake in the evening if Im not at goal, but the last couple days, I've discovered starting with a shake has been the key difference between me meeting goal and not meeting goal. I can't talk myself into a shake in the evening - the thought of even milk by then makes me cringe. So for now, I'm sticking with what's working. I know when I can fit a little more solid/soft in, I'll be able to go it without a shake, and hopefully my aversion to eating later in the day will wane, too. 
 
I also was told to restart vitamins this week, and to add in B12. I ordered off celebrate, and besides the price, am pretty pleased. Their calcium chews beat swallowing big pills by a long shot.
 
I took pics the other day and was surprised by how noticeable the difference in my belly and chest is. Definitely motivated to keep that tradition up.
 
Last but not least, I'm biting the bullet and going back to using MFP. I've been using loseit, and I like it a lot - I feel the interface is a lot cleaner - but it really only lets you track breakfast/lunch/dinner and one snack, and it's driving me batty. I also can't edit or create recipes from their desktop site, only from their app. I'm using a notebook to kind of plan my water and protein for the day, but the specifics of calories and macros I prefer in an app. If you have it, add me :D My username is delilish. 
 
ANYWAY. That's my update and Im sticking to it. <3 
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Fantastic update! So glad things are going down more easily. Your pre-op program was so good, I expected post-op care to be great. Sorry to hear it's not. I'm quite underwhelmed with mine as well (and my copays are big :().

I think it's great you figured out the shake timing that works best for you. Finding what works is such a relief. What celebrate calcium flavor are you liking? Of the three I've tried, I like chocolate best (over caramel and berry). I'm so glad you can see the changes. You're kicking butt like I knew you would!

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21 minutes ago, Gretta said:

Fantastic update! So glad things are going down more easily. Your pre-op program was so good, I expected post-op care to be great. Sorry to hear it's not. I'm quite underwhelmed with mine as well (and my copays are big :().

I think it's great you figured out the shake timing that works best for you. Finding what works is such a relief. What celebrate calcium flavor are you liking? Of the three I've tried, I like chocolate best (over caramel and berry). I'm so glad you can see the changes. You're kicking butt like I knew you would!

Yeah, I expected it to be better too! Those copays are killer, man. I just got my payment plan for surgery too and ughhhh. So yeah, if youre gonna charge me, Im gonna see who I want to see, or I'm not coming in. :D 

I like the blackberry! I got a little varied sampler thing of the chews when I had ordered some protein powder from them in the past. I tried the caramel in it, but it didnt have a chocolate one :< For my B12 I got mint and it's good too, no weird aftertaste like a lot of dissolvables. Once I'm done with my flintstones, I may switch to them for multivitamins as well. 

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I love how you advocated for yourself at the office! Ouch about the payment plan. You're worth it.

I started out with Flintstones, too. I got tired of my tongue tasting weird, so I went for One a Day Women's Petites. They go down (swallowed) really easily. I take 4 a day, and my bloodwork looks great. 

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When I checked out, I told the girl for my two month, I expected to see the surgeon, and I wanted my case changed to a different NP (we follow with an NP starting normally with the six month one). She initially tried to say it wasn't possible, and I told her I wouldn't return for any further appointments unless I was reassigned. Magically, it became possible :D

Like a boss!

My follow up is with my surgeon every month. I'm in a different state, so she calls me. This coming week will be our second monthly appointment. Once a month for 6 months, then 2 @3 months, then once a year. I get labs every three months for the first year, then once a year after that.

I didn't realize I was fortunate to speak directly with her, so I'm glad you mentioned it.

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Good for you standing up and not getting that dr again! I am pretty lucky I ONLY get MY dr every time! 

I am also fortunate, once I paid my copay for my surgeon ($20) at my first preop visit, I haven't had to pay a single thing...it is all inclusive...meaning my surgeon visits, my surgery and post ops visits in hospital as well as all my post op visits with him and with my NUT at his office have ALL been covered by that initial $20!!!  Can you believe it?!?!  My insurance ends at the end of this month so I moved up my 1st week of Feb appt to this Friday (since I have a half day I can see him in the afternoon w/o taking off) but it will be my last time to see him until my dh gets a job and we get health insurance back.  

That drink cup will help get your fluids in!  I have a 30 oz cup that fits in my cup holder (which is a must for me)....I fill it 3 times a day (but don't always finish it though I try to).  I drink it all and more when I am home but not when I am at work (can't run to the bathroom that often).  I only eat once at work (I eat before I leave, then a 4 oz meal at lunch then I am home for dinner).  So my insulated lunch bag has only a small container and infant spoon in it and that is all :)  I looked at other boxes and containers to buy presurg, but now I laugh bc it is such a small amt of food I take with me!!!  

Good luck going back to work. I recommend making a lot of meals up ahead of time so it is a grab and go in the morning!

 

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My program is all inclusive as well. I had to pay $100 up front. No copays ever. The pre op, post op, therapist, nutritionist, support groups etc is mine for life as long as I keep going. Which I do intend to do. The only time I do have to pay is at the hospital. That was not even going to be bad with the insurance that we had in 2017. Now our deductible has jumped WAY up with our new insurance. I am not complaining though. I still have to talk to a nurse with UHC BRS program to find out all of the details. Very nerve racking for sure.

You are doing great, delilas!

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18 hours ago, Gretta said:

I love how you advocated for yourself at the office! Ouch about the payment plan. You're worth it.

I started out with Flintstones, too. I got tired of my tongue tasting weird, so I went for One a Day Women's Petites. They go down (swallowed) really easily. I take 4 a day, and my bloodwork looks great. 

I'll have to look into those! I remember as a child loving Flintstones and now Im like...these are gross :<

I'm jealous @CheeringCJ and @Readytobeme - those sound like amazing programs! My pre-program ran me 800 bucks (plus copays for pre-op visits and pre-anesthesia, a large copay for the EGD, and a copay to my own PCP to get a letter saying he supports it). I have a balance of a little over 3k for the surgery (not including the 2k downpayment I had to make just to schedule it), I had a large payment for the Upper GI Series from when I was having issues swallowing, and while I dont pay copays for my post-ops, I will definitely be getting bills for them. And my hospital is a "bariatric center of excellence"! :rolleyes: I realize a lot of people have to pay the full amount out of pocket, however, and even just for the 22 pounds so far (40 total since starting the pre-op program) it's been worth it. 

Actually will be interested to see if the bill lists my surgeon or the NP, because in our MyChart system, it still says I met with the surgeon. :huh:

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I complain about my insurance but, i know it is still a bit better than what a lot of people have. I will end up paying $2000 total for this surgery where I would have only paid nothing last year since my deductible was met. With my old insurance even with deductible I was only looking at paying $500. So this is going to be very hard for us to swing.

I have to go to the hospital for a stress test and ultrasound of my heart on the 18th. I have no clue what those will cost me. So, it may run me more than the $2000.00 in the end.

I was surprised to hear these things about programs for everyone though. I thought that they all basically operated the same way. Hopefully your grocery bill will drop enough that it will help you make your payments. Thats what I am counting on. I know that the hospital requires full payment up front from me before surgery. I do have my bariatric team for life with no additional fees though. I am thankful for that.

Edited by Readytobeme

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Another thing to consider, we rarely go out to eat anymore. Granted it's really because my husband is out of work, but in reality, even if he was working and we had both incomes, I had no desire to go out to eat. I am super practical and things have to be a good deal to me and to go out and pay for a meal is impractical to me, so we have save tons at way too!!!  The last time we paid to go out to eat was in October, and we used to go out all of the time!  So if you're like me, you'll save money too!  

Edited by CheeringCJ

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22 hours ago, CheeringCJ said:

Another tho to consider, we rarely go out to eat anymore. Granted it's really because my husband is out of work, but in reality, even if he was working and we had both incomes, I had no desire to go out to eat. I am super practical and things have to be a good deal to me and to go out and pay for a meal is impractical to me, so we have save tons at way too!!!  The last time we paid to go out to eat was in October, and we used to go out all of the time!  So if you're like me, you'll save money too!  

Very true! We have gone out once since surgery, and that was to a panera, where I occupied myself with a cup of chicken noodle (and I left the noodles). And that excursion was mostly because I was so tired of being in the house, I couldn't take it any more, but wasn't sure about my stamina, so a short trip to panera and a walk around the bookstore next door was my "big day out". 

So far, my grocery bill is pretty similar, though I am cooking slightly smaller amounts, and what would have been my portion for dinner only is now my portion for dinner, plus 2 or 3 meals over the next couple days, and usually leftovers for my husband to take to work. So I'm not spending any money on lunches or the like, and neither is he, and that's likely where my real savings lie currently. I've been doing okay on just payments from disability, which is 60% of my pay, so we have to be saving money somewhere!

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yeah, I don't really notice it during grocery shopping but I do know I am cooking less.....it is just that my freezer is fuller since I am not using it as fast....I will eventually have to slow down my normal buying! :)

 

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