MargM

Regret and buyer's remorse 9 weeks post-op

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You don't have to explain yourself, @Res Ipsa. To me, that statement has always oversimplified the struggle and felt dismissive. That's my personal take. Something about the wording. When the same sentiment is worded a different way (something like "No food is worth giving up the victories I've had"), I'm totally cool with it and even agree. I also dislike the word "skinny" in general. I hope to never be called that and will never label myself that way. I'm very aware that these are my personal problems, not anyone else's. 

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20 minutes ago, Res Ipsa said:

no food is worth regaining weight for. 

I love the wording of this. Again, don't let my personal issues prevent you from using the other slogan. Totally a ME problem.

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18 minutes ago, Res Ipsa said:

 

So to me the saying simply means that no food tastes so good that it is worth gaining weight for and becoming overweight again.

Interesting. Thank you for sharing! I appreciate your perspective. To me "nothing tastes as good as skinny feels" means appearance is more important than anything else. It's a refrain I've heard on and off throughout my life from women who find their self esteem in being skinny. In my experience it has also been used as a way to passively shame fat women. 

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6 hours ago, Stephtay said:

Also, pre-op I would have been quietly and only on the inside super mad that the fritters weren't perfect. I would have felt robbed so later in the day I would have gotten something else sweet to make up for it. (I'm laughing as I type this because as absurd as this sounds - this is exactly what I would have done pre-op!)

Yes, yes, yes

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4 hours ago, MargM said:

@Stephtay The smart, logical part of me knows (or at least *hopes* it will get better) but being in the now and not feeling or seeing any end in sight is a challenge. Something I realized today though - and this may be part of it - I am not a super fan of the unknown. And this is all about the unknown. I mean, I think I *thought* I knew what I was getting into but that's not the same as experiencing it, right? I think my issue too is that I *did* think I would enjoy food post-op; i did not expect to not enjoy eating so this period, whatever it is, is throwing me off. I do hope it passes but I also think I have to be prepared that it might not. WIth that in mind, I have to come up with a better framework for dealing and a way to positively spin things a bit. You guys have all given me great ideas, suggestions and feedback and I am going to work with some of these tips and see what I can come up with.

I love that you wrote letters to your foods. I think that's a great idea and I might have to do that. The one thing I miss soooooooooooooooooo badly that makes me want to cry is coffee. I can't handle it at all and I was a HUGE coffee drinker. Maybe writing a letter would help.I am going to try it and see what happens. Thanks for sharing yours stories. All of this is so personal. I am so grateful I found this group and folks here who are willing to be open and honest about things.

@MargM Um, er, no coffee?? Ok, I agree, I would commit suicide and hope for something better when I got reincarnated. I mean, really, why live if you can't have caffeine? That's right up there with grape-infused-and-aged water. (I am SOOO hoping my surgical team is not on to me quite yet). 

So Ok more seriously - I would try some things that have strong flavors, salty savoury umami etc. A tiny piece of aged Parmesan. A thin slice of good salty dry salami (since you can't eat anything much you might as well try some good stuff). Nori seaweed, which is used as the wrapper for sushi rolls. Very strong COLD espresso, very bitter, perhaps sweetened a touch so you have aromatics, bitterness, sweet and roasted. And then something delicate and aromatic. Do you / did you / like the scent of lemons? Or roses? Or lavender? It turns out we have these very deeply primal memories, based upon scent and taste, that predate our conscious memories. Try to access those. Years ago I was walking in Boston's Chinatown and I smelled something - I don't know what to this day - and I was absolutely flooded with these earliest childhood memories that related to scent, and this led to my exploring this. Without going into vast detail those memories and pleasures are very very deep, and may serve to help you now.  We construct our pleasure based upon anticipation, memory, and the actual sensual experience we have. Like when you see an old friend and the actual interaction is just a normal one, but the pleasure is so much higher because of all the wonderful times you have had in the past. 

This may not be the usual suggestion you get but I think there is some merit in trying these. I just bought some wild flower honey that is a melange of scents just beyond my ability to name the elements. The tiniest smell leads to 'remembrances of times past.' 

Good luck. Anyhow in a few weeks you will be on the mend and no doubt enjoying your old set of things. 

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2 hours ago, Gretta said:

I love the wording of this. Again, don't let my personal issues prevent you from using the other slogan. Totally a ME problem.

I think it was the Duchess of Windsor, not an historical personal favorite person of mine, who said you can't be too rich or too thin. Simple? Shallow? Perceptive of the way the world works? Canny? Cruel and dismissive of people not rich or not thin? Maybe all of the these. The older I get the less I know.  

But when I am struggling, I tell myself that no food tastes as good as thin feels. I don't always believe it ... but like a childhood prayer it serves to steady my rudder when the waves are a bit much. You can be an atheist and pray to your God(s) when needed and then pretend it never happened. So, no food tastes as good as thin feels. 

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15 hours ago, Res Ipsa said:

FYI - that link did not work for me due to a need for a password - but here is the same page unlocked...

http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:Kesyu7jPcIcJ:www.medscape.com/viewarticle/824138+&cd=1&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=us

Here are the first three paragraphs of the article:

Following gastric-bypass surgery, almost all patients will have a smaller appetite, but they will also probably find that some foods no longer taste or smell the same, a new study reports. Moreover, patients who develop a dislike for foods they enjoyed before — often meat — lose more weight than their peers.

These findings are based on questionnaire replies from 103 obese patients who underwent Roux-en-Y gastric-bypass surgery at a center in the United Kingdom. After their surgery, almost all patients (97%) reported a drop in appetite, and many reported that some foods tasted differently (73%) or smelled differently (42%).

"This was a snapshot study in time trying to put some sense to anecdotal patient comments about how their taste and smell senses have changed," senior author David J. Bowrey, MD, from the Leicester Royal Infirmary, United Kingdom, told Medscape Medical News. "The good part…is that patients who had aversions…to certain foods had greater weight loss than some of the other patients."

@Res Ipsa and @Michael_A Thanks for sharing that article. I am a research-based type of gal so this was VERY helpful!

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7 hours ago, Res Ipsa said:

@MargM

By the way, after my surgery I found that I liked drinking water a lot more if I add a twist of lemon or lime to the glass. 

I have tried added fruit but that does not seem to help at all either. I will keep playing around with it though.

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5 hours ago, Stephtay said:

Pre-op I drank several cups of coffee a day. I still drink it! I drink decaf with a protein shake and milk. It is not exactly the same but I like it just as much. Lots of people here who still enjoy coffee (regular and decaf) and have WLS recipes to recreate the various Starbucks drinks if that was your thing.

You are right, you might not ever enjoy food again. But I think that is very rare. Pre-op I remember telling my therapist (with tears running down my cheeks), "I'm afraid I will miss food everyday for the rest of my life." She told me I might, but it wasn't likely. Thankfully that wasn't the case because I'm not someone who believes 'nothing tastes as good as skinny feels'. Skinny or thin feels pretty great but I can think of 800 things that taste fantastic. 

 

I can't find my "coffee groove" yet and that's been really hard. I miss the routine of it - waking up, making coffee and reading the paper. I have tried decaf and regular, cream, no cream, protein shakes of different flavors. Again (sounding like a broken record) I have yet to find a mixture that tastes good to me. I have almost given up on coffee and that's a bit heartbreaking for me. I think thats one of the "foods" i miss the most. I might keep playing around with different variations but I am losing faith that I will find my coffee heaven again. I will poke around the boards for some reciepes though. I was never a Starbucks or "mocha, latte, frapaccino" kind of girl so I don't need to go fancy. @Stephtay what's your favorite decaf? Can you tell me your ratios of coffee, protein shake and milk? Which shake do you use?

The phrase "nothing tastes as good as skinny feels" does not particularly personally resonate with me either. Because I did not do this to be "skinny"  - I did this to be healthy and healthy looks like all different shapes and sizes. 

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5 hours ago, Res Ipsa said:

One last thought for you to consider is this - as you lose weight, as you become thin, healthy, and able to effortlessly be active, you will come to realize so many wonderful joys in life that are beyond imagination now. 

For example, walking into a room and not being adversely judged due to your weight, being able to fit easily into an airplane seat, being able to buy attractive clothing anywhere, being able to be active and not get hot and sweaty, being able to sit on any chair and not worry that it might collapse, being happy to be in group photos rather than avoiding them, waking up in the morning and feeling so very healthy and alive, going to the doctor and not getting the lose weight lecture, fitting into amusement park rides, and finally (and perhaps most importantly) knowing that you probably will live your life ten or more years longer (growing old with your family and friends) due to your weight loss. 

Nothing tastes as good as skinny feels. Yes, it's a cliche statement, but it also is very true. 

@Res Ipsa Some great stuff here but sometimes - or maybe for me, today - that seems so far off into the future. It's hard to think about all of the benefits yet to come when right now, sitting in my kitchen,  I am crying because I just want to drink a gosh darn glass of water without getting sick. (I am not currently crying in my kitchen, by the way. Just trying to make a point.) You are talking about the light at the end of the tunnel, which is essential and so very very important to keep in mind, but right now I am at the stage of trying to figure out what the tunnel entrance even looks like. Does that make sense?

With that said though, your framework is spot on. The benefits have been wonderful and I know will only continue to be great, and I know it's important to keep those in mind. 

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1 hour ago, BurgundyBoy said:

@MargM Um, er, no coffee?? Ok, I agree, I would commit suicide and hope for something better when I got reincarnated. I mean, really, why live if you can't have caffeine? That's right up there with grape-infused-and-aged water. (I am SOOO hoping my surgical team is not on to me quite yet). 

So Ok more seriously - I would try some things that have strong flavors, salty savoury umami etc. A tiny piece of aged Parmesan. A thin slice of good salty dry salami (since you can't eat anything much you might as well try some good stuff). Nori seaweed, which is used as the wrapper for sushi rolls. Very strong COLD espresso, very bitter, perhaps sweetened a touch so you have aromatics, bitterness, sweet and roasted. And then something delicate and aromatic. Do you / did you / like the scent of lemons? Or roses? Or lavender? It turns out we have these very deeply primal memories, based upon scent and taste, that predate our conscious memories. Try to access those. Years ago I was walking in Boston's Chinatown and I smelled something - I don't know what to this day - and I was absolutely flooded with these earliest childhood memories that related to scent, and this led to my exploring this. Without going into vast detail those memories and pleasures are very very deep, and may serve to help you now.  We construct our pleasure based upon anticipation, memory, and the actual sensual experience we have. Like when you see an old friend and the actual interaction is just a normal one, but the pleasure is so much higher because of all the wonderful times you have had in the past. 

This may not be the usual suggestion you get but I think there is some merit in trying these. I just bought some wild flower honey that is a melange of scents just beyond my ability to name the elements. The tiniest smell leads to 'remembrances of times past.' 

Good luck. Anyhow in a few weeks you will be on the mend and no doubt enjoying your old set of things. 

@BurgundyBoy Nope. I can't find any coffee or mixture (yet) that doesn't taste like pond water. And I wake up each morning to my coffee machine taunting me daily. (Really, it taunts me!). I feel robbed, not only of a delicious, hot and tasty beverage, but of my morning ritual. Now I just wake up in the morning and get ready for work? Blah! What's that all about?  I guess I just have to keep trying different mixtures and flavors but so far, it's been a giant fail. How do you take your coffee? What's your favorite bean?

I definitely agree that strong scents bring back memories. I have those associations with some foods and memories - figs remind me of my grandma - but I have not had any of them lately. Maybe it's time for a trip to the farmer's market for some exploration. I really do love this idea. Thank you for it.

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@MargM Zero regrets. 

On the contrary: I now feel like I'm a person who is NOT CONTROLLED BY FOOD. It has no power over me. I honestly hope I stay this way. The feeling of being faced with chips and salsa at a Mexican restaurant (my personal kryptonite) or a table filled with home baked goodies at work (yesterday) and simply having no reaction to it is amazing. I miss tasting nice things sometimes, for sure, but the feeling of not being controlled by food is the most powerful thing I can think of. 

I just think of myself as not really a food person now, and let it go. I focus my energies elsewhere. 

Respectfully, @BurgundyBoy, while I appreciate your suggestions as helpful advice, if Marg is perceiving tastes at all like me, everything just tastes weird and bad. All of the things you described taste terrible to me now. Trying them all out sounds like torture! :) Instead, I focus on achieving my protein goals and redirecting my energy away from food. I really don't mean to be mean - it just sounds like you can't imagine what having an altered palate might be like. Everything seriously tastes yucky to me. Fruits and veg excepted - they're mostly fine.

Again, Marg, most people don't have these taste issues forever, so don't freak out yet. Your aversions will very likely go away at some point. If mine don't, though, I will be just fine with that! :) 

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Coffee?  Have you tried it iced or cold brew?  

Pre op I hated coffee; nasty stuff!!  DH buys green beans, roasts it, grinds it, and uses a French press= obsessed!  

Fast forward after surgery a few months, I was craving coffee; iced.  I use skim and Splenda.  And sf coffee syrups.  

Eggs went the other way.  Ate them on the weekends.  Now they look good, once in a while I'll make one, try it and gag!  Some days I survive on protein drinks and protein bars.  But I've come to accept it.  I've mentioned before; I love to cook and bake.  Made daughter steak fajitas tonight, looked good making it but I settled for Greek yogurt for my supper.  I made a huge Easter dinner this year and forgot to eat, lol!  My job is also cooking for 130 kids at a large daycare.  I'm around food all day!  You will adjust.  It takes time to figure out what your groove is.  And tastes do change.  

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12 hours ago, Res Ipsa said:

 

Nothing tastes as good as skinny feels. Yes, it's a cliche statement, but it also is very true. 

I don't have any issue with this statement....but the difference between myself and many others here is that I'm at goal. 

I certainly haven't come away from surgery with any food aversions that weren't there pre-op, but I'd also done serious diet time prior to my surgery that food had already lost it's power over me. I choose to keep it that way. Coffee has never been a no go that I've been told about by my surgeon, so I've continued to have it, and "grape infused water" is also something I don't ban myself from having. I do have much less now than I did prior to surgery.....but for me declaring a "no go" is tantamount to ensuring I get miserable and eventually lose my war with myself....consequently nothing is banned.

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18 hours ago, Jen581791 said:

@MargM Zero regrets. 

On the contrary: I now feel like I'm a person who is NOT CONTROLLED BY FOOD. It has no power over me. I honestly hope I stay this way. The feeling of being faced with chips and salsa at a Mexican restaurant (my personal kryptonite) or a table filled with home baked goodies at work (yesterday) and simply having no reaction to it is amazing. I miss tasting nice things sometimes, for sure, but the feeling of not being controlled by food is the most powerful thing I can think of. 

I just think of myself as not really a food person now, and let it go. I focus my energies elsewhere. 

Respectfully, @BurgundyBoy, while I appreciate your suggestions as helpful advice, if Marg is perceiving tastes at all like me, everything just tastes weird and bad. All of the things you described taste terrible to me now. Trying them all out sounds like torture! :) Instead, I focus on achieving my protein goals and redirecting my energy away from food. I really don't mean to be mean - it just sounds like you can't imagine what having an altered palate might be like. Everything seriously tastes yucky to me. Fruits and veg excepted - they're mostly fine.

Again, Marg, most people don't have these taste issues forever, so don't freak out yet. Your aversions will very likely go away at some point. If mine don't, though, I will be just fine with that! :) 

@Jen581791 Wow. "Zero regrets." That makes my heart happy to hear and I am glad you are in such an awesome space. I hope too, to one day be able to say that. I never fully felt controlled by food, but I love the idea of not AT ALL being controlled by food. I can see how that feels empowering and I am totally down for that. A friend of mine had lap band about 7 years ago and she said to me, pre-surgery, "food is over rated." I did not quite get what she meant at the time but now I think I have an inkling. :)  And yes, EVERYTHING tastes horrible to me too.

I think I have to find a way to manage if the taste of food does not come back for me  - and @Jen581791, I might be looking to you for more inspiration (although you have given me tons) - but also explore ways of attempting to explore scents and flavors in an effort to open up my palate a bit. It might not ever happen (and I think, with some support, I can live with that) but I won't know until I have tried some more, so that's what I am going to go forth and do, but only in the way that works for me.

And @Jen581791 instead of "delicious" I am going with the word "scrumptious" or "devine"  mostly because they make me giggle a bit.

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17 hours ago, Cheesehead said:

Coffee?  Have you tried it iced or cold brew?  

Pre op I hated coffee; nasty stuff!!  DH buys green beans, roasts it, grinds it, and uses a French press= obsessed!  

Fast forward after surgery a few months, I was craving coffee; iced.  I use skim and Splenda.  And sf coffee syrups.  

Eggs went the other way.  Ate them on the weekends.  Now they look good, once in a while I'll make one, try it and gag!  Some days I survive on protein drinks and protein bars.  But I've come to accept it.  I've mentioned before; I love to cook and bake.  Made daughter steak fajitas tonight, looked good making it but I settled for Greek yogurt for my supper.  I made a huge Easter dinner this year and forgot to eat, lol!  My job is also cooking for 130 kids at a large daycare.  I'm around food all day!  You will adjust.  It takes time to figure out what your groove is.  And tastes do change.  

@Cheesehead, you know, I have never thought of iced or cold-brewed coffee. Pre-op, they did not appeal to me at all but since I am on an "ice-chip" kick I wonder if that might taste OK. I can try it with skim and see what happens.

 

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21 minutes ago, MargM said:

@Cheesehead, you know, I have never thought of iced or cold-brewed coffee. Pre-op, they did not appeal to me at all but since I am on an "ice-chip" kick I wonder if that might taste OK. I can try it with skim and see what happens.

 

Fingers crossed! Be sure to report back.

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@MargM

Well, for what it is worth.... complex flavor profiles can be as much as 90% scent, not just in a fragrant glass of grape-infused-water, but also for things that are baked/grilled/hot cooked.  If you eat something warm and redolent, with your nose pinched shut you'll see what I mean. And those scent-memories can be pretty powerful. Good luck in finding something attractive to you! 

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On 8/28/2017 at 9:48 PM, MargM said:

@BurgundyBoy Nope. I can't find any coffee or mixture (yet) that doesn't taste like pond water. And I wake up each morning to my coffee machine taunting me daily. (Really, it taunts me!). I feel robbed, not only of a delicious, hot and tasty beverage, but of my morning ritual. Now I just wake up in the morning and get ready for work? Blah! What's that all about?  I guess I just have to keep trying different mixtures and flavors but so far, it's been a giant fail. How do you take your coffee? What's your favorite bean?

I definitely agree that strong scents bring back memories. I have those associations with some foods and memories - figs remind me of my grandma - but I have not had any of them lately. Maybe it's time for a trip to the farmer's market for some exploration. I really do love this idea. Thank you for it.

So, this is not very high-brow, but I like really strong, fragrant, oily-beaned, deeply dark roasted (probably just shy of burned) French double roast coffee in the morning - I now recognize the low-acid, high flavor, "sweet" tasting being from the controlled caramelization of the roasting, that can be made strong with only an hint of intriguing background bitterness. So, since it is low acid and doesn't "need" milk for balance, I drink it black, with a little Splenda; on vacation had it with a little honey since the places we went to had no lo-cal substitutes for sugar.

National brands like this are Starbucks and Whole Foods French roast, but I also try little local roasters who pay the growers in Central America more for their beans.  Bustelo dark coffee is way more bitter so it doesn't work for me. We grind the beans fresh every morning so the oily aromatics are there, mix it with water just shy of boiling in a glass cylinder, let it sit for 2-3 minutes and then pour through a coffee filter into an insulated carafe. Each step designed to enhance or retain the aromatics. I'm told that fresh ground coffee loses half its highest tone aromas after an hour if not used, don't know if it is really half but it does lose something. If one of us has a work trip and have to leave the house at 5 am and grinds the coffee the night before, it does lose a bit of aromatics, so it has to go into a closed jar overnight to preserve it as best possible. I like the convenience of the machine cups and so on but this approach wins for me on the basis of flavor and aromas. My wife is even more off the deep end than I am when it comes to this. 

Those aristocratic, high-acid coffees from the highlands of wherever are wasted on me in the morning. The interesting thing is that for this kind of very dark roasting, the origin of hte beans is almost unimportant since it is subsumed by the caramelization of the dark roasting. So dark French roast should cost less than the medium or lightly roasted highland coffees where more of the inherent flavor of the bean comes through. 

So this is my morning ritual: grind and make coffee, retrieve the newspapers, sit in the living room drinking great coffee while I read them and organize the day in my head; and perhaps TMI, hope for my morning BM prompted by the high-grade coffee, weigh myself, track in my spreadsheet; and then make my morning shake etc. after weighing in. With these all is right with the world, at least at the start of the day. As you may have guessed I never bought the line that you have to give up coffee for WLS... I think it is a factor only for people with very marginal fluid intakes, and that has not been my circumstance.

Maybe your senses will be enlivened by a cup of fresh ground coffee in the morning. Here's hoping for you!

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19 hours ago, Gretta said:

Fingers crossed! Be sure to report back.

OMG...iced coffee is pretty darn good! I made it more ice than coffee (because ice is my friend these days) and it's pretty darn tasty. I bought my first one day so the test will be making it at home. Fingers crossed I can keep it down.

Thank you SO much for the suggestion. Like I said, it's something I hated pre-op and did not think to try!

IMG_20170830_115147077.jpg

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8 minutes ago, MargM said:

OMG...iced coffee is pretty darn good! I made it more ice than coffee (because ice is my friend these days) and it's pretty darn tasty. I bought my first one day so the test will be making it at home. Fingers crossed I can keep it down.

Thank you SO much for the suggestion. Like I said, it's something I hated pre-op and did not think to try!

IMG_20170830_115147077.jpg

Excellent news! 

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2 hours ago, BurgundyBoy said:

@MargM

Well, for what it is worth.... complex flavor profiles can be as much as 90% scent, not just in a fragrant glass of grape-infused-water, but also for things that are baked/grilled/hot cooked.  If you eat something warm and redolent, with your nose pinched shut you'll see what I mean. And those scent-memories can be pretty powerful. Good luck in finding something attractive to you! 

@BurgundyBoy I have actually been thinking alot about this and I think I might start with scents that are strongest in my memory right now. I mentioned figs, so I am going to give that a try but I also have noticed that when folks around work have some sort of tomato-based meal, it makes my heart sing a bit. I was also making a lot of shakshuka ("tomato-egg" is what we called it) - https://toriavey.com/toris-kitchen/summer-2010-travel-blog-shakshuka/ and it was the one thing I enjoyed so maybe I will try that again and expand off of that palate. I am still a bit skeptical and trying to make sure I can brace myself a bit (and pull out a my mental skill set) to help me deal if it doesn't taste good, but at least it's a starting point. I will let you know how it goes.

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20 minutes ago, MargM said:

Like I said, it's something I hated pre-op and did not think to try!

 

Pre-op I didn't like kalamata olives. Now, I eat them several times a week. It is interesting how tastes can change. Keep trying new things. Even if you don't like something today, you might like it in a a few months. 

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29 minutes ago, MargM said:

OMG...iced coffee is pretty darn good! I made it more ice than coffee (because ice is my friend these days) and it's pretty darn tasty. I bought my first one day so the test will be making it at home. Fingers crossed I can keep it down.

Thank you SO much for the suggestion. Like I said, it's something I hated pre-op and did not think to try!

IMG_20170830_115147077.jpg

Hooray! Fantastic news!

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On 8/28/2017 at 1:39 PM, Gretta said:

I'm sorry this is getting you down. I'm disappointed that I no longer like water (although I have been liking it in the last week or so), but happy I like tea. Do you have a Camelbak Eddy water bottle? I got the insulated metal one (can't stand drinking out of plastic), & it really helps get the fluids in.

 

@Gretta You inspired me - I ordered a Camelbak water bottle but then I thought about straws. I have noticed that I can do ice chips or SUPER cold, almost frozen water, with straws. So, I thought I might try *stainless steel* straws to see if they help AND THEY DO. Again, things I would not have thought of.

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