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8 months (and then some...)

Kio

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Somehow this post has kept being put off... I meant to do it on the 9th, but ran out of brain.  :)  I've also been busy packing for the move - we're still waiting for our closing date, but we want to be ready. (It should be in the next two weeks!)  My entire being has been focused on moving - to the extent that I think work is suffering a little.  But I've managed to stay mostly on track with my eating and -- after a brief slump that was mostly weather-related - I've also gotten back to walking every day again.

Every night I go over in my head the things I want to talk about in this update... and then I fall into bed with a book and the next thing I know it's morning again. How does that keep happening!  I've got a little list together now, though, so here goes.

ONEDERLAND - I'm in it!  I officially went under 200# on 5/7/18, and now on 5/18/18 I'm at 194 - I do love the week of my period!  :D  I may be able to squeeze out another pound or two between now and Sunday if things go as they usually do this week.  (Literally squeeeeeze - imagine wringing out a soaking wash cloth!)  It's been weird, because I really didn't expect to get here.  My surgeon didn't really think I'd get here, either.  I haven't been here since I was in college!  As of today I've lost 75% of my excess weight.  How crazy is that?  

Food - Like I said, I'm staying on track, keeping carbs low and protein high.  I'm actually doing better with my protein lately, averaging around 80-90g a day.  Net carbs wobble between 50-60 a day - a little higher than a lot of people go, I know, but I don't seem to have an issue at this level as long as most of them are the incidental carbs that come with my yogurt, cottage cheese, etc.   Calorie-wise, I don't keep close track - but I tend to average now around 1000-1100 a day.  I'm planning to stay in this range until maintenance.  As far as amounts go - I can definitely eat more in one sitting than I could before.  Not a ton more - but enough that I don't have to eat five times a day to get all my protein in.  I'm still getting a lot of my calories in the form of protein shakes, yogurt and cottage cheese!  But I supplement that with nuts, cheese, sliced deli meat, eggs, and sometimes bacon or some chicken.  Oh, and sashimi!  I had that for dinner tonight.  It was lovely.

Health - I feel so good lately!  I mean, I've felt pretty good since surgery, but lately a lot of things seem to have gotten better. I get out of breath a lot less lately, even walking fast or climbing stairs; I can walk a lot further than I ever expected (I did 4 miles the other day at a pretty good clip - afterward I was tired and a little sore, but nothing out of the ordinary.)  Today I mowed the lawn, something I haven't done in the ten years I've lived here - front and back, and it's a double lot!  Afterwards I could feel the hard work, but was still fine for doing all the stuff I normally do in a day.  I can go up AND down the stairs in my house without holding onto the railing - I'm not quite brave enough to carry things downstairs because I'm still not quite sure of my feet, but it's still a thing I can do!  And I can go up and down the stairs at work without holding on, too, and that's two flights.  It's harder work, I'm definitely a bit out of breath by the time I get to the top, but I can do it.  I had my yearly physical earlier this month, and my cholesterol and triglycerides are much much improved, and all in the normal zone; blood glucose totally normal (though it always has been), blood pressure was great, and my doc removed "sleep apnea" from my list of conditions!  I think she's as thrilled with how short that list is getting as I am. 

Maybe because this update is so late, I've been spending a lot of time lately thinking about, well, myself.  So much has changed since surgery, I can't even really find a way to wrap my head around it.  Many of the vets here have said they still think of themselves as fat or overweight, or still see themselves as fat, even in the mirror.  For me - I find that every time I see myself in the mirror, it's kind of a shock. It's not that I think of myself as big anymore - I'm not, at least not like I was.  But I definitely don't expect to see a person with a narrow face and cheekbones and a jawline.  I don't expect visible collarbones.  I don't expect narrow hips or a waist that visibly nips in above them.  I don't expect narrow, non-sloping shoulders.  And when I look in the mirror and see those things, it's jarring.  I mean, wonderful - don't get me wrong!  But definitely startling.  Just yesterday I had to go to the office for a work thing, and to get into the building I have to walk along a sidewalk with a big wall of windows on one side.  I turned my head as I was walking, and it was almost like a funhouse mirror, because my legs looked LONG and THIN.  What???  I mean, I'm 5'3 - there is no part of me that is long.  But my legs are now proportional to my body, and that makes them look long.  So weird. 

That's all stuff I really like about my new body... but there are things I don't like, too.  That's ALSO weird.  I'm used to just... one big uniform dislike:  Fat!  I never even really parsed it out into various fat parts like "double chin" or "big butt" - My fat was everywhere.  I'm sure there was a time when I was going up the scale that fat landed preferentially on some parts before others... but by the time I was at my highest weight, it was just piled on everywhere.  Now, I can look in the mirror and find specific things I don't like.  My rosacea is a big one - it's pretty bad, and much more noticeable on a small thin face than it was on a big moon face.  My jaw is pretty square, and I'm not quite fond of it (though I do love that I can actually see it now.)  My new slim throat is a bit wrinkly.  I mean, this is all minor stuff, nothing that I spend a lot of time thinking about - but it's just sort of novel to have specific things about my looks that I don't care for. 

I'm also not particularly happy with the excess skin thing. At this point I'm pretty sure I'll be getting some plastic work done, sometime after I hit maintenance.  Part of it is appearance - I'd like to do something with my upper arms because I'd really like to be able to wear a tank or a sleeveless cami now and then in the warm months, and my bat wings are immense and floppy.  But part of it is comfort, too.  My thighs have gotten a bit difficult to manage at night when I'm trying to sleep.  I'm a side sleeper, and I have to consciously drape the flabby part of whatever thigh is on top, so that it doesn't fold over on itself and feel super bizarre.  My belly and butt are also mostly flab now, but these can be camouflaged pretty easily with the right pants and some spanx.  The bat wings are really the thing that bothers me most. 

Anyway, I just mentioned what I'm not thrilled about for the sake of completion - in truth, those things are 100% outweighed by all the things I AM thrilled about.  I still get compliments a lot, and I still really like that (though I still don't fully know how to react to it!).  One of my coworkers from another department said, "You look so good... I think you have lost a whole me!"  Which is true and then some; I'm pretty sure she doesn't weigh 161#!  A neighbor stopped by while I was mowing the lawn today and said, "Kio, I have to tell you, you are so skinny now!"  And a friend said, "Are you done?  You look like you don't need to lose anything else."  I just told her that my clothes were hiding a multitude of sins, and left it at that.  ;)  It's true - I can definitely see where these last 54 lbs or so are "hiding" when I take a bath!

I've noticed some fun stuff, too.  Like - my cat doesn't crawl over me in bed anymore.  :D  He used to do it every night, several times - and he'd kind of piton himself up like he was climbing a mountain, so I had all these scratches on my shoulders, where he always started his ascent. Now he just JUMPS over - because he CAN. No more scratches!  And he's EIGHTEEN.  So you know, he can't really jump that high!  Also, I can cross my legs fully now, so that my calves line up (you told me I'd get there @CheeringCJ,and I did!). I can wrap my fingers all the way around my wrists so they overlap.  And - the steering wheel feels very far away from me these days - nowhere near my belly!

Overall, I feel like I've had a good month.  I'm looking forward to seeing how many more of those I can rack up on my way to goal!

 

 



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@Kio, what a lovely update! I really like your balance between giddy, happy positives and real, honest issues. I think we all have them - but you've presented yours in a realistic yet not overly positive or overly negative way.

Seeing yourself in a reflective surface is definitely a shock for a while! It's not like "Wow, I look thinner" - it's more like "Wow, I look like a totally different person!" My brain is still working to catch up with that. 

Congrats on your newly acquired (and hard-won!) physical abilities. Walking up stairs just gets easier and easier. Suddenly you can see how others can run up them, or skip steps going up. Mowing lawns, crossing legs, all the little things that don't seem that little to us. 

Best of luck on your house situation. I know I would be 100% obsessed with it if I were in your position, so congrats on just being able to keep work going and take care of your food/exercise needs while dealing with this busy phase. 

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7 hours ago, Gretta said:

This was so fun to read. You're doing great! Thanks for sharing the REAL experience.

Thanks, Gretta!  I really try to keep things honest.  I know there will probably come a time when I'm not updating the blog as frequently (though I plan to stay around the forums for a looooooong time!) and I just want the newbies who come to see both sides.  That's one of the things that helped me most when I was deciding on surgery.  There's just so much that's wonderful about this process that it tends to overshadow the little negatives - but they're real, and I'm glad I wasn't taken by surprise.  I'm just kind of a relentlessly (and sometimes annoyingly) optimistic person - it's how I coped with a lot of bad stuff growing up - so I'm always leaning toward the bright side and have to compensate a bit.  :)

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6 hours ago, Jen581791 said:

@Kio, what a lovely update! I really like your balance between giddy, happy positives and real, honest issues. I think we all have them - but you've presented yours in a realistic yet not overly positive or overly negative way.

Thanks, Jen!  That's actually kind of difficult for me so I'm glad it's working. I was just saying to @Gretta that unrelenting optimism has always been my primary coping strategy - the most downbeat I usually get is "ok, this isn't good, but I'll get through it and things will be better."  So I have to work at letting the not-so-bright-side into my personal narratives.  :) 

6 hours ago, Jen581791 said:

Seeing yourself in a reflective surface is definitely a shock for a while! It's not like "Wow, I look thinner" - it's more like "Wow, I look like a totally different person!" My brain is still working to catch up with that. 

Exactly!  I feel like kind of a reverse Steve Rogers.  I was huge and I got little!  Sadly, I did not get glorious, tan, rippling muscles in the bargain - I think there was something wrong with my batch of super soldier serum! :D  

(The lack of muscle is something I'll have to work on - I need to join a gym, but I don't want to do it until after I move, so I can try out some of the ones near my new home. Right now I'm really feeling the lack of body mass in some daily stuff - I didn't have muscle before, but at least I could kind of hurl myself at my office doors or the doors to retail places, and rely on inertia to open them.  Now I really have to put my shoulder and legs into getting those doors open!  The revolving door to my building at work is a particular pain - it's sooooo heavy.  If there's not already somebody in it, I usually just hit the handicap access button and go through that way.  ;) )

6 hours ago, Jen581791 said:

Congrats on your newly acquired (and hard-won!) physical abilities. Walking up stairs just gets easier and easier. Suddenly you can see how others can run up them, or skip steps going up. Mowing lawns, crossing legs, all the little things that don't seem that little to us. 

Yes yes yes.  They don't seem little at all.  And that may be the weirdest thing of all - because I feel like I'm in a nearly constant state of amazement at the stuff I can do.  Especially the "little" stuff naturally skinny people take for granted, like the stairs, or squatting down to pick things up or pet the dog, or just standing around chatting in the street or hallway - every time I have a long conversation with someone while standing up, I'm kind of beaming at myself inside!

6 hours ago, Jen581791 said:

Best of luck on your house situation. I know I would be 100% obsessed with it if I were in your position, so congrats on just being able to keep work going and take care of your food/exercise needs while dealing with this busy phase. 

You don't even know!  I'm sooooooo crazy about the new place.  And I feel bad because I'm like a kid about it - let's go go go!  But Leah and Meg are so much more adult about it and just ridiculously patient.  Me, I keep making a 20 mile round trip to "get coffee" and incidentally drive past the new house on the way.... :):):)  

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18 minutes ago, Kio said:

Right now I'm really feeling the lack of body mass in some daily stuff - I didn't have muscle before, but at least I could kind of hurl myself at my office doors or the doors to retail places, and rely on inertia to open them.  Now I really have to put my shoulder and legs into getting those doors open! 

I still have this issue, and I'm building my muscle mass back up pretty well. I have to stand a different distance from the door to get enough leverage - a little farther away. My husband laughs every time. And when I do push the door with my shoulder? It's not my fat arm that hits it first, but my boney shoulder and it hurts!

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1 minute ago, Jen581791 said:

I still have this issue, and I'm building my muscle mass back up pretty well. I have to stand a different distance from the door to get enough leverage - a little farther away. My husband laughs every time. And when I do push the door with my shoulder? It's not my fat arm that hits it first, but my boney shoulder and it hurts!

Ha!  Leah makes fun of me, too.  And STILL ends up doing most of the (literal) heavy lifting around the house - it used to be because my knees and back couldn't take it, but now she says it's because I look "like you couldn't lift a coffee cup, let alone groceries!"  I have to grab stuff quick or she does it all herself.

She also STILL stops and turns to wait for me to catch up with her when we're walking through parking lots or in stores - only now, it usually results in me bumping right into her, because I can keep up!

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41 minutes ago, Anita62 said:

Lovely post. I can relate to seeing yourself in the Windows too!

Thanks, Anita!  It's weird but awesome, isn't it?

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I have always enjoyed your updates, @Kio.  You were the first one I followed and I ran to the computer every day for your daily updates before/after your surgery and have always been engrossed in your success imagining me to be the success you were!  And look at us, both rocking it.  Granted you are rocking it even more, but I have some more time to catch up.....but like you said you were coming for me and you are closing in a little too close for my comfort....LOL! (tho really, if you catch up to me, you win, if I go down, I win, if we both do both, it is a true win-win....which we both know we will be!!!!)  We are awesome...as are all the LOSERS here!!!

I love how I can relate to you too.  I caught a glimpse of my legs in the mirror in the bathroom the other day....and I looked back again because I thought maybe something was wrong with my leggings (like I ripped them or something because I could see light through them).....well, lo and behold, the light coming through them was simply light...showing between my legs that used to touch down to the knees so I never saw the "light of day" through them!!!  It was so bizarre, I took a picture which I will post here..(not to hijack your post but since you were talking about surprise in your reflection!)  So I can totally relate and am amazed because the old me would catch a glimpse and think "holy moly, am I THAT fat?!?!" because i never saw my self from the side/back like a reflection or picture can so  I never saw the biggest part of me and I was always shocked and frankly humiliated by the size my reflection was....so isn't it awesome now to catch a glimpse and be shocked in a GOOD way?!!??! :)  I am so happy for you and that fun experience!

I am so proud you have been still eating ok and walking.  In our old lives, it was SOOOO easy to get railroaded by the simpliest thing that took over our lives and then our "diet" was the first thing to go.  "I can't keep up with the healthy eating bc we are showing the house tonight and I can't clean up all the vegetable peels, so I am just ordering pizza" or "I can't go to the gym today, I am packing and that is work enough" etc.  We've all been there....and look at the new improved you, it doesn't give up and drop everything bc a little/lot of stress is here.  You are awesome!!!

And the leg crossing....I knew it!!!  You DID it!  Super great job!  I remember when I posted that you tried and were getting there but not "line up alongside close" but you are now, girlfriend!!!  Totally cool!  I sit that way all of the time...don't know why, I think it is just because I can!  I sit that way at my desk, on the train, in church, on the sofa etc.  I even sat that way when getting my haircut and she made me uncross them to  make sure it wasn't a crooked cut! (didn't help, she still messed it up!)

It is great that you can mow and go up and down the stairs and keep up in the parking lot etc....such awesome small miracles that are huge to us who get it!!!  Phenomenal!  I love that even the cat can leap over you!  That is sweet!  Great job on the crossing health problems off of your list!

 

legs.jpeg

leg.jpeg

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@CheeringCJ!  I'll respond more completely later but had to at least post this!  I'm headless because I'm makeupless :).  I keep getting surprised by the same thing!

1697983619_ImageuploadedfromiOS(1).thumb.jpg.d307796b07520b3933ffe1ae2abd44d6.jpg

 

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2 minutes ago, Kio said:

@CheeringCJ!  I'll respond more completely later but had to at least post this!  I'm headless because I'm makeupless :).  I keep getting surprised by the same thing!

1697983619_ImageuploadedfromiOS(1).thumb.jpg.d307796b07520b3933ffe1ae2abd44d6.jpg

WOW, Kio!  Look at YOU!!!! Look at your hand on your waist...and yes there is a narrow waist there now!  WOW! And light shining between your thighs.  You have changed remarkably!!!  When you have makeup on, you need to take a full body after (or "during") and then post it w/ your previous at 300+!!!  AMAZING!

 

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Your weight loss success and insights are amazing. Thank you for sharing them with us all. 

As your blog post notes, it is truly wonderful after you lose weight to be able to be active without quickly losing your breath. 

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17 hours ago, CheeringCJ said:

I have always enjoyed your updates, @Kio.  You were the first one I followed and I ran to the computer every day for your daily updates before/after your surgery and have always been engrossed in your success imagining me to be the success you were!  And look at us, both rocking it.  Granted you are rocking it even more, but I have some more time to catch up.....but like you said you were coming for me and you are closing in a little too close for my comfort....LOL! (tho really, if you catch up to me, you win, if I go down, I win, if we both do both, it is a true win-win....which we both know we will be!!!!)  We are awesome...as are all the LOSERS here!!!

Oh, I beg to differ - WHO is rocking it more?  Who is like 3 lbs from goal?  That's you, lady!  =D  And you definitely beat me to Leah's weight - she goes up and down between 165-175!  But I'm thrilled that we're both still in the race.  It's like the Boston Marathon - lots of people run, but nobody really expects to WIN.  The important thing is crossing the finish line.  ;)  And I know we both will! 

I loved doing the daily updates!!!  It kept me honest in those first weeks when it would have been so easy to just try one thing off plan.  I think the most adventurous I got was trying some hummus a little early. :D  So it definitely did its work!  I do miss those first few months of losing 17, 16, 15 lbs... but as long as I'm still losing I don't care.

17 hours ago, CheeringCJ said:

I love how I can relate to you too.  I caught a glimpse of my legs in the mirror in the bathroom the other day....and I looked back again because I thought maybe something was wrong with my leggings (like I ripped them or something because I could see light through them).....well, lo and behold, the light coming through them was simply light...showing between my legs that used to touch down to the knees so I never saw the "light of day" through them!!!  It was so bizarre, I took a picture which I will post here..(not to hijack your post but since you were talking about surprise in your reflection!)  So I can totally relate and am amazed because the old me would catch a glimpse and think "holy moly, am I THAT fat?!?!" because i never saw my self from the side/back like a reflection or picture can so  I never saw the biggest part of me and I was always shocked and frankly humiliated by the size my reflection was....so isn't it awesome now to catch a glimpse and be shocked in a GOOD way?!!??! :)  I am so happy for you and that fun experience!

You look so happy and so great in those pics!!!  Your legs are super skinny! 

17 hours ago, CheeringCJ said:

I am so proud you have been still eating ok and walking.  In our old lives, it was SOOOO easy to get railroaded by the simpliest thing that took over our lives and then our "diet" was the first thing to go.  "I can't keep up with the healthy eating bc we are showing the house tonight and I can't clean up all the vegetable peels, so I am just ordering pizza" or "I can't go to the gym today, I am packing and that is work enough" etc.  We've all been there....and look at the new improved you, it doesn't give up and drop everything bc a little/lot of stress is here.  You are awesome!!!

It's true!  And the other thing I find is that it's much easier now to get BACK on track if I go off plan.  Nobody can be 100% compliant... at least nobody normal :D  but when you can actually see the results of compliance, it's a lot easier to say "Ok, I probably shouldn't have eaten that, I'm going to adjust in THIS way and THIS way to get past it."  Before, when I would eat one thing I felt wasn't "on my diet", I would consider that entire day a lost cause - and therefore an excuse to eat a ton of junk food because the day was already wasted.  I don't really have that mentality anymore... it's pretty freeing!

17 hours ago, CheeringCJ said:

And the leg crossing....I knew it!!!  You DID it!  Super great job!  I remember when I posted that you tried and were getting there but not "line up alongside close" but you are now, girlfriend!!!  Totally cool!  I sit that way all of the time...don't know why, I think it is just because I can!  I sit that way at my desk, on the train, in church, on the sofa etc.  I even sat that way when getting my haircut and she made me uncross them to  make sure it wasn't a crooked cut! (didn't help, she still messed it up!)

Ahahaha... I do the same thing!  At my desk, while watching TV, in my meetings with my manager... just any time.  We're totally in sync.  :D 

17 hours ago, CheeringCJ said:

It is great that you can mow and go up and down the stairs and keep up in the parking lot etc....such awesome small miracles that are huge to us who get it!!!  Phenomenal!  I love that even the cat can leap over you!  That is sweet!  Great job on the crossing health problems off of your list!

Thank you thank you!  Your "cheering!" and support have helped me so much through these transitions... I feel like I really have a buddy looking out for me and challenging me.  It's been great sharing this wild ride with you!!

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14 hours ago, Res Ipsa said:

Your weight loss success and insights are amazing. Thank you for sharing them with us all. 

As your blog post notes, it is truly wonderful after you lose weight to be able to be active without quickly losing your breath. 

Thanks!!  It really is wonderful... there are still some physical pains I've discovered that aren't helped by the weight loss, but even for those, the weight loss will make it a lot easier to address them when the time comes.  Now I just need to build up some muscle!!

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13 hours ago, Kio said:

  But I'm thrilled that we're both still in the race.  It's like the Boston Marathon - lots of people run, but nobody really expects to WIN.  The important thing is crossing the finish line.  ;)  And I know we both will!

I love how you compare it to a marathon (with the hometown reference of course!). And really it has been a sprint out of the gates, but now we are steady in our strides and we have to keep the pace for a loooong time. But we've "trained" for this by doing our research and by hanging out here w/ other past and present and future marathon runners and we will be successful!

14 hours ago, Kio said:

You look so happy and so great in those pics!!!  Your legs are super skinny! 

Thanks, but they aren't that skinny....but as long as they look it from time to time, I am happy.  Funny thing is I can't really accept the word "skinny"  I don't know what my hangup with that word is (and if it is just me) but I do hear it more and more often.  A lady at church calls me "skinny mini" every time she sees me.   Super-skinny...now that was a first...thanks! ;) 

14 hours ago, Kio said:

It's true!  And the other thing I find is that it's much easier now to get BACK on track if I go off plan.  Nobody can be 100% compliant... at least nobody normal :D  but when you can actually see the results of compliance, it's a lot easier to say "Ok, I probably shouldn't have eaten that, I'm going to adjust in THIS way and THIS way to get past it."  Before, when I would eat one thing I felt wasn't "on my diet", I would consider that entire day a lost cause - and therefore an excuse to eat a ton of junk food because the day was already wasted.  I don't really have that mentality anymore... it's pretty freeing!

True that, girlfriend!!!  I was so easily side tracked and thrown off of my diet/plan at the time.  I would fall off the wagon and then never get back on bc I already "blew it"!  Now I dont' have a choice, I have to get back on the wagon....I am missing the majority of my stomach for crying out loud, I NEED to feed me the right stuff and cut the crap! 

 

14 hours ago, Kio said:

Thank you thank you!  Your "cheering!" and support have helped me so much through these transitions... I feel like I really have a buddy looking out for me and challenging me.  It's been great sharing this wild ride with you!!

Awww, feeling the love!  Right back at you, buddy!  It has been great sharing this wild ride!!!  

Just curious...how does Leah feel now that you are closing in on her?  Do you think she might get a tinge jealous? I am sure she is happy for you, but since you've always been the bigger of the two of you, do you think she will envy that when you aren't any more?  I worry about the change in relationship dynamics w/ my own daughters....I feel guilty being smaller than them and yet i can't bring them over to the force....so I don't really talk much about it in front of any of them....and they never mention it to me either.  It does get awkward at times, and I am wondering if I just take things too personally or if I just have such empathy for the "fat girl" bc I have been one for my whole life.  

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