Wednesday, September 30, 2009

An Oh So Yucky Day!

You ever have one of those days where it seems nothing goes in your favor? Well, today happened to be one of those for me. My alarm went off this morning at 5 am and I instantly realized I felt like shit. There is just no better way to put it ladies. My head was throbbing, my neck felt stiff, and my body just hurt. I have a huge problem with migraines which, strangely enough, seem to have worsened as of lately. I knew there was no way I could fake it through the day at work so I got up and called in. I took some meds and proceeded to camp my greasy butt out on the couch. I slept with my little one during her morning nap and when I woke up, I felt a tad better and I was hungry. I decided to heat up some of last nights leftovers, beef stir fry over rice. Looking back, I see how stupid I was. be so optimistic as to combine rice with dried out leftover meat.
I started to dig in my bowl. It was delish. I got about 3 bites in and I started to feel some pain in my chest. I put my fork down and thought "ok, Melissa, this will pass in a couple of seconds." WRONG! The tightening in my chest started to feel like a vice grip and I felt like I needed to do something quick. I got up and started pacing the room. My husband kept asking if I was ok but I couldn't respond. I felt my mouth salivating. I thought, "oh God, so this is the dreaded PB." I went to the sink and was spitting some but nothing was coming up or going down. I was just Stuck. This went on for about 20 minutes. I decided to try some tricks I had read on LBT. I bent way over into the downward dog yoga position. Then I started hiccuping, and hiccuping, and hiccuping some more. 10 minutes of this and I decided to get a drink. I took a swig and then I heard some gurgling and I imagined my unsweet tea was like Draino going for a clogged drain. It worked! I felt instant relief, no PB, and the food passed.
It was a horrible experience and I hope this never happens again. I'm swearing off rice and weird leftover meat. Oh and I'm starting to wonder if I can PB??? How come the food wouldn't just come back up? I'm like Jerry on the old black and white cookie Seinfeld episode. Aaggh! So, I'm typing this out feeling crummy and still looking greasy. I promise I'm gonna get a shower after I finish sharing my horror story with you all =) Here's to hoping tomorrow is a better day.

Friday, September 25, 2009

60 pounds gone forever!

Well, ladies and gents, I woke up this morning and got on the scale and it read...


Now, I'm not one to attention whore but since this is my blog, I'll tell you all that I'm pretty ecstatic. I had such a bad week with my job (I'll post on that later) that this milestone really brought me some happiness. I now only have 40 pounds till goal. That still seems like alot but I know I will get there eventually. I think I'm at the elusive sweet spot right now. I can eat pretty much anything only in small portions. I make good choices 90% of the time but allow myself a treat every now and then. I won't lie to ya'll, I do not exercise regularly at all. I need to work on that. I've been looking for a used treadmill to put in my bedroom so I can exercise during my shows at night. It's just not realistic for me to get a gym membership. I work 10 hour days and still have to come home and cook dinner for the family, help with homework, get kids in the bath, etc. By the time I do all that there is no way in hell, I'm going out to the gym. So, I think the treadmill at home is a good option.

I am tracking all my foods on Weight Watchers online so I account for everything I eat and I think this has been extremely helpful. It's only 16 dollars and change a month and I think it's been the best money I've spent.
I will post full length pics sometime this weekend so you can see a comparison. My arms still bug the bejesus (yes, I made that word up) out of me. It's like I haven't lost any weight there at all. Grrrr...

I'm posting some older pictures of me so you can see what I look like at various stages of weight. Yes, I color my hair ALOT! I tried to pick a goal weight that I think is relatively easy to maintain and not have to struggle all the time. It's at the high end of a normal BMI, but I think I looked good at that weight. Dr. Lord tried to tell me that my goal should be 115. I think he must have been sucking on the crack pipe that day because I have never in my life weighed 115. At 120 pounds, I looked a little gaunt. At 115 pounds, I'd have no boobs or butt and would look like a skeleton. Now, I'm open to trying to lose a little more but 115 seems crazy. Let me know what you think.

Here I am at around 125 pounds. No, I'm not jaundiced. It's a poorly scanned pic and I apologize for that.

The next few I'm at around 135 pounds. Isn't it amazing how at lower weights, 10 pounds can make a huge difference?!?!?

And here I am at around 145. What do you think? Better at 135-145?

And please note how in none of the pictures do my arms look small!! WTF folks?!?!?

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Not Your Typical Bandster

I know it has been scientifically documented for many years now that I am abnormal, but sometimes I feel like the weirdest bandster out there. I read the LBT forums, like I know many of you do, and I feel like I can't relate to half the stuff people post on there. First off, I was not scared to have surgery. I can't explain why but the thought that something bad might happen never really even crossed my mind. Yet, daily in the pre-op forum there is someone freaking out and I mean having an all out Xanax panic attack about what might go wrong. I try to be sensitive but I just can't relate to that feeling. Maybe it's because I deeply believe my surgeon is the best or maybe it's because I'm a nurse and I know what to expect. Either way, I was confident that the band would not lead to my early demise.
Then there's this one thread that really makes me question whether I actually even have a band or not (I'm halfway kidding). It's the "You know you're a bandster when..." thread. I have NEVER Pb'd or slimed. I have once right after being filled drank some water quickly and felt it bubble a little. I have once or twice had some uncomfortable chest pain that passes in less than 30 seconds. When I read that someone was vomiting in the bathroom for 4 hours because they took a bite of bread, I think WTF?!?!? Are they too tight? Am I too loose? (haha ladies) I can definitely eat more than 1 cup of food. In fact, this morning I had 2 cups of rice krispies with skim milk for breakfast. It makes me question whether I am not tight enough. I have 7.8cc in my 10 cc AP band. On the one hand, I think maybe if my band was tighter, I could lose quicker. On the other hand, I think look how much I've lost and I've never once had to pray to the porcelain god to get there. I really think there are many band patients out there who either don't follow the band rules or who rely on the band (ie. getting it so tight) to stop them from eating. In my heart of hearts, I think those are the same people who end up with a slip a couple of years down the road. I'm writing this in the hope that those considering the surgery will not think that throwing your food up everyday is the way the band was intended to work. It's not and it's dangerous. Baby your band if you intend to keep it, people! So lets review today's band lesson.



Now, you can't say I didn't teach you something =p

Saturday, September 19, 2009

In True Blood Mourning

It's not even been 1 week since the Season 2 finale and I'm already suffering withdrawals. I thought this season had some really great highs and there were some disappointing lows. I love when they really explore the character's feelings and relationships. I liked the Hoyt/Jessica storyline. She's struggling with her vampire v. human self and I think that's mirrored in the Eric storyline only difference is he's embraced the vampire and shunned the human part of himself. I liked the FOTS plotline and really liked the Godric character. It's weird but I almost felt like I could empathize with him. I've always thought it was strange when people say they want to live to be 100 years old. I think of the pain that person must feel, watching those you care for pass away. It has to be lonely. Imagine living two thousand years! I'm sure death would be a welcoming thought by then. I also liked the Sam/Daphne storyline. In the final episode when he saw the doe in the woods, I could feel his pain. These are the kinds of things I hope they focus on in Season 3. I know I maybe in the minority here, but I want to see Sookie display some other types of emotion besides this blind devotion to Bill. Come on. I want to her struggle with some feelings for Eric. And on a side note, I liked Sarah Newlin and Sophie. Kudos to Anna Camp and Rachel Evan Woods for their portrayals.

The whole Meanad storyline was interesting but did not need to be dragged out all season long. It would have been better to sum that up the first four episodes. I don't want to see a Jason/Eggs murder focus next season. That was done season 1, thank you very much. I hope Alan Ball sticks to what he's good at, deep character development. It was the reason I loved Six Feet Under so much. It was raw. You felt what the characters were going through. True Blood can be the same and I hope they take it in that direction.

And can I just take this time to announce how much I love Alexander Skarsgard. For those of you who don't watch True Blood, he's in the Lady Gaga Papparazzi video. He's sexy but he's a really good actor as well. You have to check him out.

Monday, September 14, 2009

I'll see your moggie, and raise you 2 ragdolls

I am officially a cat owner. Actually, I'm a double cat owner. About 2 weeks ago I spent a ridiculously insane amount of money (you don't want to know) on two beautiful ragdolls. We got a boy and a girl, littermates to be exact. My husband and I could not agree on names so we both got to name one cat. He named the boy, Bender (<---Futurama obsession) and I named the girl, Sookie (<---True Blood obsession).

Although, they're brother and sister, they couldn't be more different. Sookie is Miss Priss. She prances around the house, spends tons of time grooming herself, and could really care less if we love on her. Bender is Mr. Adventure. We bought a baby gate to keep both of them in the bedroom when my 2 year old is up because she tends to love the kitties in an Elmira type fashion (I will love them and squeeze them and hug them, etc.) Well, Bender has already figured out how to scale the gate. He doesn't seem to care that he could be mauled to death at any given second. He wants to jump around the house and try and swat my toes as they stick out from under the blankets. The one thing they do have in common is that they both have attempted strategic takedowns on me in the kitchen when they wanted their food. I almost fell one night when Sookie wrapped herself around my leg yelling while Bender tried to rub up against my other calf. Can we say crazy...oh, and hungry?

I'm new to cat ownage so I could use some help. I researched (cause I like to do that kind of thing) cats on the net and everything I'm reading states they need wet food, due to water content. Well, I've been giving Sookie and Bender Royal Canin dry food in the morning and a pouch of wet food at night. Bender seems to be doing fine but Sookie has had the runs ever since we got her. At first I thought it might be stress from the plane ride, new environment, etc. but I'm starting to think it might have something to do with the food. She isn't sick or anything as I've had her checked at the vets. Give me your suggestions. Should I stop the wet or will this run its course?

Now for the pictures =)

Sunday, September 13, 2009

The Official Lap Band Post

I definitely don't want to make this entire blog about my lap band. I know some people do and that's fine, but there's more to me than the fact that I'm a foodie. I've decided I'll make this post and get it all out there in the beginning, then we can all just move along! I will talk freely about my band but I plan on talking about many other things too. We'll just see how it goes. I have to cater to my audience, you know. HA!

Let's see where to the beginning, I suppose. I was a chubby kid. You remember the kid people would always pick last for their team during mandatory P.E.? That wasn't me. Actually, I usually was picked rather quickly because kids always thought I was funny. Of course, I had no athletic ability whatsoever. I remember standing in the outfield during softball and screaming to my friend across the way about nothing in particular and when the ball would actually come my way, I'd duck. I was scared and didn't want to get hit in the face. Hey, I have a cute face and I have to protect it so can you blame me? Fast forward through the teen years and I just continued to put on weight. I always had friends and even had boyfriends. Back then my weight didn't seem to bother me so much. Sure, it was in the back of my mind, but really only surfaced during particular times, such as prom dress shopping. They didn't make really cute big girl prom dresses, at least not when I was in high school.

When I was 23 years old, I had my first child. The pregnancy was terrible, complete with PTL, PIH, and a host of other problems. However, I didn't gain a massive amount of weight during the pregnancy. I think I topped out around 250 at delivery. It was the biggest I had ever been and at 5'4", it was not pretty. After I had her, I exclusively breastfed and I found that the weight started to come off rather quickly. I started walking with my baby in the stroller everyday and watching what I consumed. In 4 short months, I lost 100 pounds and went from 250 to 150. And 150 for me actually looks really good as I tend to have a good bit of muscle mass. I always thought I had been ok with me before but being thin put things in a new light. People were so much nicer to me. If my car broke down, you bet there were two guys waiting to help me out. If I walked into the store, someone was holding the door. It wasn't just attention from men, it was from women too. I found that people just genuinely treated me better as a thin person. Now, you can chalk some of it up to a renewed confidence but that certainly doesn't explain it all. Sadly, I think society looks down on overweight people. Some view being overweight as a sign of someone out of control and that can be true in some cases.

I don't know what made me fat. I think it's a combination of genetics and my environment. I grew up with a bipolar/borderline mother. I remember she would do these wild things like pop an entire bag of popcorn (not the microwave kind) and just eat for hours. She would eat so much she would end up vomiting. Now, I'm not blaming my mom. I'm just saying I didn't learn an appropriate relationship with food.

In 2003, I started back to school and worked part time at a Hard Rock Cafe waiting tables. It gave me plenty of exercise but as soon as I started to wean my daughter I noticed that I had to work harder to keep the weight off. I smoked cigarettes, popped ephedrine, and lived on Smoothie King. It was not healthy but I lost more weight, settling in at about 120 pounds. It was actually quite thin for my frame. Everyone thought I looked fantastic. Although, some would comment that I never seemed to eat. It was during this time that I met my husband. We had a whirlwind romance and ended up getting married after only dating for 4 months. So, I quit my job, and my daughter and I moved in with my husband. I started nursing school too. During this time, I kind of ate whatever was available. I liked to cook for my husband and cook I did. I also did alot of eating. I started to gain weight and was quickly back up to around 170. I then found out I was pregnant. I used the pregnancy as an excuse to eat anything and everything. I found myself back where I had started weighing in at 250 again. I hated myself. How could I, someone who is really smart, funny, and caring, do this to herself? I don't know the answer to that and maybe that's something I need to explore in therapy.

When my 2nd daughter was born, I joined WW and quickly lost around 40 pounds. I got lazy and stopped with WW and ended up gaining the weight right back. By this time I was just distraught. I felt like a sham, a liar. Like those 2 years I was skinny were just a dream. I started researching WLS options. I wanted to get gastric bypass and made an appointment to see a doctor. He talked me out of the bypass and said I just needed a little help. He talked me into the lap band and on January 19th, 2009, I went in for surgery weighing 245 pounds.

I like my band but I hate it sometimes too. It's been a sharp learning curve for me. I'm just now starting to recognize my cues and stop eating at the appropriate time. I've had to completely give up certain foods that my band just doesn't seem to tolerate, one being popcorn (goodbye dear friend!!). If I overeat, I pay for it with excruciating pain in my port area. And sometimes just that one extra bite will send me from full to miserable. I can no longer drink with my meals or have anything with carbonation. This from a diet coke junkie. It was hard but now I hardly think about it, even when my husband sits next to me drinking his Root Beer. Here I am, 8 months post op, 55 pounds down with another 45 to go. I feel better than I have in a long time because this time I know I have my "friend" to help me. Thanks Bandie!