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About WendyH

  • Birthday 06/05/1968

Profile Information

  • Gender
  • Location
    Chicago, IL
  • Age


  • Surgeon
    Dr. Alex Nagle
  • Hospital
  • Height (ft-in)
  • Start Weight
  • Current Weight
  • Goal Weight
  • Body Mass Index (BMI)
  • Surgery Date
  • Surgery Type
    Vertical Sleeve

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  1. A few of you have reached out to me, and I appreciate it, and also that Raeme started this thread (thanks Greer for letting me know). Here’s what’s going on, along with some back story here and there that provides some insight into what makes me tick. Apologies for not responding to your PM. I saw it pass through my email then forgot about it. I had a nice holiday season, connecting in real life with the people around me. Historically I get uber-grumpy around the holidays. My parents are divorced, and when I was a kid, every holiday season was contentious about custody and who got my sister and me and when, and the badmouthing of the other parent by various family members. Plus by nature I’m not a shopper, and I have an inborn frugality and practicality that hinders me from wanting to give or receive token gifts. Add to that being a non-spiritual person who grew up in the bible belt, and I ended up with some pretty hefty holiday baggage. But this year, this year I did great. Financially it was a big Christmas, because I bought several large, useful gifts. I also got to enjoy time with family, including going to a reception following and out-of-state wedding and meeting my sister-in-law’s new boyfriend, who seems like a really nice guy. My husband says I win the prize for “most improved Christmas.” Then after Christmas I organized some things around my house (finally!). When my 10 year old was five, I tried having him share his room with his baby brother and sister. He refused and started sleeping on the downstairs couch. After trying for a few weeks to coax him back to his room, I put his bed down there instead, shifting furniture into places that it didn’t really belong/fit. Fast forward five years, and he has been crashing in his sisters’ room while they’ve been at school. When they came back for semester break, they wanted their room back, and he didn’t want to go back downstairs. I pitched the idea of his younger siblings and him of doing a trial run of sharing their room/his old room. They were skeptical, but it worked so well that we made the move permanent, causing a domino effect of rearranging furniture. After five years, my nomad son has a bedroom again, including his own chest of drawers, which I bought to fit the space. Four kids now share our smallest bedroom (10’8” x 10’2” with a 2.5’ x 3.5’ cutout for the stairwell below). It is efficiently laid out and works well. The downstairs living space (aka "the kid pit") is living/play space again, and the upstairs living space isn’t crowded by a love seat that doesn’t really fit anywhere. In the process I did some organizing and purging, which needs to continue in my bedroom. So all in all, home is good. My work situation is a little weird, though. Many of you are aware that I had some difficulties at my last company when there was a manager shuffle at the level above me, and I ended up in a reporting relationship that was unsuitable through no fault of either of ours. We just didn’t belong together. It was one of those shakeups that shakes some people loose, and I found myself needing to secure employment quickly. I took a position that aligned well with my experience. Then 1.5 months later my manager abruptly left, at which time her replacement was announced. He started 1.5 months later, and then yesterday a colleague and I were laid off, and a third person was moved to a different team. I’m not surprised by the move, and actually not even upset by it. Even though I’ve been there only six months, I have some severance, subsidized COBRA, and outplacement services. Since my last job upset, I’ve been struggling with “is this really what I wanted to be when I grew up,” and a few weeks ago I registered for a couple of classes at the local community college. I have a BBA in marketing, a masters degree in market research, over 20 years experience in data analytics and market research, and 16 years in the pharmaceuticals an hospital product industries, and I’m taking classes that will qualify me to apply to an associate-level RN degree program. No, it’s not an ideal degree to transition to a clinical role, but it’s what’s possible given my life constraints. The way I look at it, even if I can’t leverage it directly and even if I don’t choose to complete the program, the classes I take will enrich me and provide new perspectives. It’s kind of a weird transitionary period for my husband too. He’s worked for himself most of our marriage, sometimes scaling up, sometimes scaling back. He’s been very busy the past 10 months working in Indiana. He recently joined the company he’s been contracting with, and his role is changing from completing projects to securing business and managing projects. Over the next few years while I’m taking classes, he could find himself building up his work situation to the point where we might be able to switch household roles a bit. Right now we just keep moving forward and see what happens. As for my weight, it’s up right now, and I’m not eating properly. Now that it’s the new year, I’ll reach out to the therapist who told me that’s when he might be able to take on a new patient. The irony is that I don’t really think the stuff I have going on is driving the poor eating choices (contributing, but not driving). More likely the main culprit is being caught in an addictive cycle that needs breaking (again). But speaking of therapy, another development in my life is that my 10 year old son started a new therapy program. We knew he had motor planning disorders (dysgraphia and dyspraxia). What has become evident through the occupational therapy services he receives at school is that he has sensory integration issues as well (always evident, but never called out as a concern). This week he started an equestrian therapy OT program, and next month he will start PT at the barn. As it was described to me, if we can regulate his sensory inputs, it should help him better plan his motor outputs, and apparently therapeutic riding can be immensely helpful in doing this. He’s just getting started, but I anticipate being in it for the long haul. Anyway, I guess the bottom line is that I have a lot going on right now, and as much as I like hanging out here with my friends, I find that when I’m on TT I tend to be here for everybody else. You guys are engaging, I like you, and I derive satisfaction from sharing my perspectives. Unfortunately, that means I can spend a lot of time here taking care of everybody but myself. On the other hand, I am active on Facebook in a more superficial manner that allows me to be digitally connected without being deeply involved. For those of you who haven’t seen me mention it before, the “H” is for Harmon
  2. I actually answered that question recently on the thread below. When I deviate much from what I mentioned there, I tend to get into trouble.
  3. I may be completely wrong on this, but I've heard that zinc deficiency can cause chocolate cravings. Have you gotten your labs checked recently?
  4. I'm less than 1.5 years out, so not super-experienced at maintenance yet. I had a recent hiccup with my weight, but I've turned the corner on getting it back down again. My weight isn't so much my goal as my behaviors are. I bottomed out at 137 and liked weighing 138-140. I'd like to get back under 150, but it's not the end of the world if I don't, as long as I'm behaving in a manner that allows me to maintain. I'm planning to see a counselor after the beginning of the year to help get me better grounded (he doesn't have any openings until then, and my needs aren't urgent). I lost 56# in the 3.5 months between my first appointment and my surgery, so I was already well on my way and on a good trajectory. Pre-op I was eating up to 1200 calories per day, protein 85-100 gm, carbs 55-75, and fats anywhere from 30 to 80, tending toward 45-65. I track my intake on myfitnesspal, which helps me stay meet my nutritional goals.
  5. It's been a while since I posted here. Today I wore size 10 black side zip pants and a medium ribbed, striped turtleneck I picked up at Target for $7.48 on Saturday.
  6. Read about the honeymoon period here.
  7. Since your mom is 1000 miles away and already has your brother's health concerns weighing on her, it may make sense to mention your surgery after the fact, once the unknown is passed and there's nothing to worry about. Your immediate family has you covered.
  8. I also already had a stick mixer, and I used it all the time. I tried puréeing cottage cheese in a conventional blender once, and the blades just spun around above it.
  9. My surgeon was Dr. Nagle, but I understand that both are excellent surgeons. You will find a ton of discussion on the thread recommended above.
  10. It definitely varies. The variables are insurance requirements, bariatric practice requirements, and schedules (both yours and the surgeon's). If the stars align, it can be less than a month, or if there are many requirements and hassles, it can stretch to more than a year. For me, contemplated mid-Jan, attended seminar mid-Feb, first bariatric appointment late March, and surgery early July.
  11. I can't advise you on what to say. I can tell you that your surgeon should have your best interest at heart, but so should you. You've had this hiccup during a stressful time that will continue to be stressful as you lose rapidly and the estrogen stored in your fat cells is rapidly dumped into your system. Regardless of what someone else would do, you know you and you must look out for your own best interest. I may overstep. Even so, I want to throw this out there for consideration. There's nothing noble about managing a mental disorder with therapy alone. Successfully managing a neurochemical imbalance without medication to normalize it is like managing obesity through diet and exercise alone. Sure, it can be done with some level of success, possibly for prolonged periods, for a small (very small) minority, possibly a lifetime. But for the vast majority, it's either something that can't be effectively managed without further treatment, and even if it can be for a while, eventually the dam breaks and you get swept back to where you started, or worse. Please redouble your efforts to find a psychiatrist you can work with. And now that I think about it, I would tell your surgeon what's going on. Don't ask about your surgery date; ask for a recommendation for a good psychiatrist.
  12. Don't worry about the sounds. For whatever reason, a sleeved stomach can be quite vocal, but it's just making noise. Those noises have nothing to do with hunger or fullness. Feeling like you're going to get sick after eating a small amount of yogurt is definitely worth talking with your nutritionist about, though. In the meantime, I wouldn't be too concerned. Your appointment is in a week. Just eat the amount that agrees with you and focus on staying hydrated. Let us know how things go.
  13. Jolls, you look great. I can see why you bought that shirt, despite knowing it would hang in your closet for a while. It's very flattering. You mentioned fat back. I struggle with the same thing. This time of year I like to wear mock turtlenecks. If I don't wear a body shaper, I have 360 degree muffin top. If I do wear a body shaper, I have bad back bulges along the edge of it. If I layer on my arm shaper to tame the back bulges, my breasts are pushed out of the top of my bra. I can't win. I found a product that I'm going to buy in a couple of months, once my weight re-normalizes. Once your swelling is down, you may consider it as well. The manufacturer is Shapeez (http://shapeez.com/), and the product I want is the Ultimate. It's a bra and shaping cami in one which is sold online and at Von Maur (located in Eden Prarie Center). I tried it on. It's extremely comfortable. It smooths the edges off the lumps and bumps. I want it and am willing to shell out the money for it. My frugal self is stopping me, even though my current size is overstocked and on sale online, because my size is in limbo at the moment. Check it out sometime when you make it to Minneapolis.
  14. I did too, despite two Thanksgiving dinners. At both I focused on protein and sampled the mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, and corn casserole. Then I had dessert after the second dinner, more than I should have, but not a crazy amount. My "get out of jail free card" was to stay off the scale for one day, allowing me the opportunity to eat properly for a day first. I'm down 1# from two days ago.
  15. Katherine, if the 15# gain was recorded before you made any dietary changes to reverse it, probably a third to half of it is water weight, meaning it's not as bad as it looks. Your body got some extra fuel and stockpiled it in the form of glycogen. Glycogen requires water, so your body held onto that too. Three to four days of eating appropriately will flush those from your system and get you to your true baseline. Then you can assess the actual damage and begin to reverse it.
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