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The Beginning



My surgery was April 16, 2014. I have had a difficult journey in these last two and half weeks. I thought that I would return to my usual routine just days after surgery... I was suprisingly mistaken! I think I also may have been delusional about many aspects of my life post-op. I never realized my addiction to food was this significant. Even though I was more than twice a healthy weight for my height, I didn't think that I would have so many issues with this first liquid diet phase. I have lost about 18lbs since my surgery and I am sure that was accelerated by my intense nausea and the fact that just about anything I try makes me feel really bad one way or the other. I am on leave from work at this point but am due to go back on the 9th which is really scary for me. I am worried about being there for so many hours because I feel so tired easily. I'm sure it's because I am dehydrated as drinking has been difficult but is improving. Also my job focus' on the kitchen environment and the ability to entertain in the way of sitting around the kitchen table. As I have said many times in these last few weeks, one day at a time is all I can do. My food cravings are intense and hard to ignore. I have yet to make any poor choices although my program guide said I could use sweetened condensed skim milk and I did. That was not a good idea, my first experience wuth dumping, I was sick for hours. It's a nasty feeling and a big prohibitor for me, although I love sweets, I can not feel like that again.


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Welcome to the world of post -op.  Some of us start out on a rockier trip than others, but we find our way.


Right now you are still in the middle of surviving having your body put in a Blender.  At least that's how it feels. 


If someone tells you they Weren't tired and weak and didn't have any food issues -- they are either lying or they are a miracle.


I'm pretty surprised they told you sweetened condensed milk would be OK for you to have -- but you can make your own with splenda and powdered milk if it is something you want to try.


The first month is definitely the worst -- at least it was for me.  I existed on protein drinks and soups "without chunks" for a long time.  I discovered warm worked much better for me than anything room temperature or cold, and so I made my protein drinks with warm water.


You can also use sf torani and davinci syrups to add some flavor to thinks.  Some people add sf pudding to their drinks but that just didn't appeal to me.


If you are having a lot of nausea, contact your doctor for medication to address this.


it DOES get better!


Good luck!

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Honestly I don't think that wanting to eat food that you can chew is a sign of being addicted to food. I think most people no matter how much they weigh would have a very difficult time with it.

Now when you get to your further stages I think that is when you really face your food demons. I know I am.


Can you possibly take more time off of work? I have had a hard time with my energy levels since surgery but it gets better every week. Just sleep as much as you can in between making sure that you can meet your liquid and protein goals as well as possible.


Are you taking vitamins? If I don't get my vitamins every day I get weaker.

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I have my 3 week post-op visit the 8th and my surgeon has yet to explain vitamins to me. I think a lot of things I have learned on my own, it's hard to know what to ask because sometimes I don't think of it until I am faced with a certain situation ya know. As for work, I will only be working about 15 hrs when I return on the 9th because I asked for a reduction in hrs. I hope to be able to make it the 5hrs per day. Thankfully I work with a lot of really supportive ppl. It's hard to hear that the "food demons" have yet to come. But I'm sure your right, my whole world has been turned upside down and I am really just trying to find a new normal.

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It takes awhile to get your energy back. I think it is a longer road to recovery than we anticipate. It takes time to learn what your stomach will handle. I also know that if your stomach can't handle something right now give it a few months, chew slowly, and surprise, you can tolerate it. I also found that at six months I can drink a whole bunch more and more easily than I could earlier. I also find that the 8 oz bottles of water are easier for me because I can drink all the liquid in a short period of time instead of sipping slowly. Work will be a challenge because your energy comes back in small pieces. I remember being at Disneyland almost two months ago and I was so tired after six hours. I would look around and so many people had so much more energy than I did. It is a personal journey back. You start learning about yourself. You have to be patient with yourself and understanding. Good luck in your recovery.

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Cass me recommendation would be to make your doctor your best friend, keep him on speed dial.  If you are nauseated, call. If you are constipated, call.  You don't know what kind and vitamin questions, CALL.  (very important take your vits).  You have been cut up and reworked and you are not expected to know what to do or how to handle it.  This is a new you.  Keep drinking your liquids and get your protein and vitamins in.  Its a must.  You will be tired for I would say at least 3 months, new body, baby steps.  I am 6 months post op and I still exhaust easier than most because we are not fueled like "everyone else"  It will get easier, keep your head up and stay positive.  You got this!!!

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Also, find a support group.  They seemed so dumb to me that I was still required even after surgery to go but I learn MORE info in the support groups than I got googling online. Recipes, do's and donts, restaurant recommendations and what I COULD order on the menu. 

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