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mambomama

LAP-BAND Patients
  • Content Count

    72
  • Joined

  • Last visited

4 Followers

About mambomama

  • Rank
    Senior Member
  • Birthday October 11

About Me

  • Gender
    Female
  • Interests
    Reading, folk dancing
  • Occupation
    NP, professor
  • City
    South Joisey
  • State
    NJ
  • Zip Code
    08090

Recent Profile Visitors

4,245 profile views
  1. Today I am back on the blog after four years! I lost a total of 87 pounds and about 2/3 of that weight came off after the gastric sleeve in 2012. i wanted to give an update, a cautionary tale and maybe a not-so-depressing perspective of one who has not been a weight loss success. Busyness and stress has always been my enemy when it comes to weight loss. It often takes me by surprise and whisks away any structure and success I have built into my life. One day I am doing well and eating and exercising and then BAM! It all goes out the window. Even my house gets messy and cluttered during those times of extreme stress and time pressure. I work a job that is not just 9-5 so I take much of my work home, I work from home often and get extreme deadlines like grant applications etc. Before I initially lost weight before surgery, was a very busy time, but I put the accountability of a structured weight loss program into my schedule. This is the only way I initially lost 30 pounds at the beginning. I also started working out with a trainer. Although it is the cost of a vacation every year, I need it to be successful. When I had the weight loss surgery, I had quit my stressful administrative job and was in a window of time less busy (even though I was working). All went well with my weight loss after surgery (even though slow as was my history of weight loss) until I started a new job. Once the stress of the job was getting to me, I stopped the morning walks and began to eat more frequently and less clean. A bad case of pneumonia and 40 days of steriods, further put me back and I gained weight. Now, I am facing some serious foot pain from plantar fascitis, nothelped by weight gain. All this downhill trend happened as my career has blossomed. However, if truth be told, I prefer a healthy body to work success. Looking back, I am humbled by the setback and have felt moments of panic. However, something in me has shifted as I ponder my failure. All in all, I am still down over 50 pounds from my initial weight (228 from 282). Although the failure of weight gain from 194 hits me in the face, I have come to a gentler self-assessment and I like myself better than ever. I can now look in the mirror and feel okay about my curves. I lost a bit from my highest weight regain (240) although it has taken a year to take off. So, all this to say, count your blessing and jump back in. Love yourself in the process and never give up. If I had given up, I would easily be 300 pounds. I am now concentrating on getting back to the losing mode and it is workomg...slowly. Limiting to 3 small meals and 2 small snacks if needed, drinking a lot but separating from food, doing some exercise every day and finding joy in the process. For me, finding joy includes time with my loved ones and having quiet time as I pursue God in my life...I am even going back to some ballroom dance classes. Dance on everyone! I wish the best for all of you! Tell me your story...I love to read them.
  2. mambomama

    A year after VSG surgery

    It is hard to imagine that 1 year ago this month, I had the VSG surgery procedure. I remember the agony of finally deciding to have the surgery after years of saying, "Never", then having to wait those several months to wait for surgery. Now looking back, I do see value in all those hurdles I had to jump! It has been a relatively easy time this year. My loss has been very slow compared to many others, but I have always been the slow loser! I have had 2 significant stalls during this year. The first one lasted almost a month and was 6 months after surgery. The second stall was almost 2 months and lasted from November to january. I started getting panicky, so I went on structured plan to make sure I am not overeating without realizing. I also cut out all carbs except fruit (2 per day). I am eating mostly lean meats and lots of low-carb veggies. Now my total loss is 87 pounds, 57 of which came after the surgery. One can see that i averaged about 1 pound a week this first year. I won't be winning any weight loss awards, but to have lost this much is a miracle and a true gift! For those of you who, like me, struggle with metabolic and endocrine issues such as thyroid, PCOS, diabetes, I do have some advice. It may or not apply and I hestitate to claim any knowledge, but here goes: 1) No matter what your weight, start working on fitness. I started 7 years ago, exercising 20 minutes twice weekly. At 282 pounds, it nearly killed me. I would literally climb into bed EVERY day after exercise and go back to sleep. I was so exhausted that I could not stay up on my feet. It took everything I had to get out of bed in the morning to exercise, but I did it for the fight of my life. I gradually increased my exercise over then next four years. I was still gaining weight, but I was plugging along. Now looking back, I can see the wisdom in the exercise. My core is strong, my muscles and spine are healthy and strong for my age. My coordination is good and my exercise recovery is so much better. Now, my exercise schedule is as follows: M, W, F - 6am walking partner for 50 minutes (about 3 miles) T, R - some cardio, but mostly resistance, core and balance training In between, I take a zumba or circuit class once or twice a week and I dance on the weekends with my hubby once in a while. 2) Start looking inside! I journal, and now looking back it is helpful to see how much healthier I am inside and out. Journaling for me is a conversation to God. It leads me to God and helps sort out my thoughts. I also listen and write down things I sense that maybe God wants for me. It is a very deep and sweet place some days, light and superficial others, and agonizing once in a while. I use scripture along with this for my meditation and I am blessed in a deep place as a result. 3) Face your fears- I am facing my fears, my insecurities and my failings. Facinig my fears was so important for my success. For me, that meant taking swim lessons. I actually dove head-first finally, and cried when I did it because it was such a barrier to me. I am also teaching some kids spanish, and this is forcing me to tackle a very insecure place in my life. I left south America at age 11 and was very sad about it. I stopped speaking spanish and began to feel insecure to talk to others in spanish. It started with lessons and now I am helping others. 4) Face your failings and forgive yourself and others - Facing my failings has also been important and this journey has taken me to some uncomfortable places. Sometimes it meant being honest with myself and my food. Sometimes it meant looking at a specific event where I made a poor choice in a relationship, or responded poorly to others. It has even meant dealing with unforgiveness of myself and others. In one situation, someone slandered me very painfully and unfairly. I held on to the unforgiveness because my reputation mattered to me. It was 2 years later that I finally went to this person to ask her what I did that led to this situation. She told me there were "Lots" of things,but could not think of anything specific right then (she said I should have given her time to thinkabout it). At that moment, I was given a release from the torment of the situation. I was able to forgive her, and ask her to forgive me for whatever it was that led her to slander me. It was like a ton of weight was lifted from me. 5. Be honest about your food. 6. Find a good practitioner. Find a practitioner who understands the complexities of dysmetabolic syndrome, HPA axis disorders (hypothalmus, pituitary, adrenal), and has holistic approach to healing. 7. Reward yourself!
  3. mambomama

    10 month before and after

    Congratulations! You are an inspiration!
  4. mambomama

    Hematoma anyone?

    Hello, A year ago I had my surgery, and had a hematoma on my largest incision. It was hard and a bit swollen. One night as I was getting ready for bed, it spontaneously drained, and drained etc. It was obvious that it was not fresh blood, but it was unnerving as I was about to go to bed and worried how much drainage I really had there and if underneath something might "POP"! I called the MD and in the end I waited till the next day to go to the surgeon to have it checked. I was still so worried about exsanguinating in my sleep that I put a steritrip, then 4x4 gauze covered with tape and then I put my tight SPANX on to keep everything in place! I still laugh about it and somehow in the midst of my paranoia, I had a good laugh! In the end, it had mosly drained by the next day. I did have some continued drainage, but it gradually got better and no infection. Hopefully yours will heal quickly and you won't need the SPANX!
  5. mambomama

    March Roll Call!

    Hello Everyone! Happy Anniversary to everyone! I need to post a new pic, but yesterday I hit WONDERLAND!!!!! It took 3 years (2 years of dieting before surgery) and the weightloss from day one has been VERY SLOW! But, considering all my metabolic resistance, I am thrilled, and life is much better in the 100's than before! I hope the best for all you fellow March Sleevers and hopefully on our 2 year anniversary, I can be at goal!
  6. mambomama

    "wls Is Not What God Intended..."

    Hello, I'm sorry you have to be on the receiving end of this type of sentiment. Whenever I get responses from people about having enough faith to trust in God or self-control etc., I remind them of the many medical procedures that we do even though we have faith or self-control. We have our gall bladder or parts of our intestines removed when in fact, good preventive care might have prevented these problems in the first place. How many of our health problems like gallstones could have been prevented or delayed if we had taken exquisite care of ourselves? In some cases, you get to a place of no return. If our obesity gets to a place where metabolically our body is fighting against us and our health problems worsen despite trying to lose weight, then it is time to do the surgery. Research shows that the best results even for VSG are on the younger and lower BMI patients. It seems that waiting too long can make it harder to lost weight as fast or as much, in part, because our body has metabolically made it more difficult to lose the weight. My nutritionist and surgeon remind me every visit that if I go over 1300 calories a day, I will start gaining weight. This is not normal! For the rest of my life, I have to maintain a lower than normal calorie intake and it would have been impossible for me to maintain under 1300 calories without the sleeve. Your friend can't generalize her lived experience with yours, or her metabolic issues and weight loss success with you either. This is life or death for some of us, and research supports this!
  7. mambomama

    March Roll Call!

    Congratulations Aspiring Evangelist on your success! My weight loss started exactly three years ago, when I weighed 282 pounds. After hitting a plateau the did not seem to want to budge, I had surgery. On March 1st, surgery day, I was 252 pounds and as of yesterday, I am 209 pounds. I have always been a slow loser and it looks like this will be not different, but for me this is fast and very exciting as I am averaging 1 pound a week consistently. I still have to pinch myself!!! For exercise, I do resistance/pilates twice a week and walk three days. Sometimes I miss the walking and I am on the lazy side, but my secret is getting an exercise partner to help me become accountable. You all are a big part of the success too as I am constantly encouraged by your posts!
  8. Congratulations! What an inspiration!
  9. Attached is an article about PCOS. IT is about 8 years old, but it is good and will give you an idea about testing and diagnosis and easily available to pass on to you all. PCOS is common. It is autosomal dominant which means a mother has a 50% chance of passing it onto each daughter. It's prevalence among women is somewhere between 4 and 12 %, or close to 6-8% depending on what you read. If you want a diagnosis, find an endocrinologist or OBGYN who specializes in this. So many are not that well familiar with the issue. I got diagnosed by an ednocrinologist and decided to get a 2nd opinion at a large university and that MD asked me if my periods were regular and I said, Yes, usually. Right then and there she told me I did not have PCOS based on that answer. She had not looked at my labs nor had she asked me the "Right" question after I said Yes to being regular. How many days apart are my periods? The answer was more than 40 days apart which means I have fewer than 10 periods a year, which is important. Some will look for hirsutism (excess hair) which I do not have and conclude there is no PCOS, not everyone has excess hair. If you think you have PCOS based on what you have read, there is a high liklihood that you do. We are all on the right path though to healing. Just remember that we had the bodies built for famine in the day! We were the survivors in those lean famine years! We are helping our body adjust to 21st century. Question - Have any of you gone to a plant-based diet after VSG? I am moving in that direction but afraid to have less Protein. Clin Med Res. 2004 February; 2(1): 13–27. PMCID: PMC1069067 Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome: Diagnosis and Management Michael T. Sheehan, MD ClinMedRes0201-0013.pdf
  10. Hello, I have PCOS, and I had surgery March 1st, 2012. So far, I have lost 69.2 pounds. My three month Hemoglobin A1c increased slightly (5.9 to 6.1) and that was frustrating! I have not tested my pos-op androgen levels yet, but did find that my testosterone came down significantly before the surgery after a 30 pound weightloss over 2 years. I think my HbA1c was elevated primarily because I lowered my metformin dose post-op from 2 grams daily to 1 gram daily. Now I have increased the dose up to 1.5 grams. My blood pressure also went up post-op which may be in part to the medication reduction, as BP and blood sugar stability go hand in hand. Ultimately, I think that my PCOS will improve as I lose more weight. Now that I am getting closer to the 100's, there will be a tipping point where the PCOS will improve. Hang in there for the long haul!!! Nancy
  11. mambomama

    March Roll Call!

    Hello all! My highest weight was 282. After 2 years of BST (Blood, sweat and tears) dieting, my surgery weight was 252 on 3/1/12. My current weight is 217 with a total weight loss of 65 pounds. I am thrilled!!!! My post-op loss is slow just like my pre-op dieting, but I am trying to see the big picture and not compare or be discouraged. THings that have changed since surgery: 1. I can cross my legs 2. I can fit in an airplane seat and buckle without an expander 3. Fit in a kayak and enjoy kayaking 4. Increased energy 5. Shop in misses instead of women's plus Some of the unexplained: 1. my BP is worse since surgery 2. My HGA1C is higher (diabetes worse) I am exercising etc, so I am not sure why this is worse, but my guess is menopause is not helping. I look forward to seeing the numbers go down!!!!
  12. mambomama

    Nj Sleevers Out There

    Hello Mbasile, I wanted to reply from South Jersey. My Sleeve was done in Philadelphia by Dr. Murayama at the University of Pennsylvania. The surgery took place at Presbyterian Hospital where he is Chief of Surgery. I highly recommend him and would choose him again. I had very little post-op pain, and had none of the gas pain that everyone talks about. I did have a small hematoma under my largest incision and that was drained and healed fine. That is a minor complication that can happen when they do not use drains (which he does not use-but it is rare). I have lost 34.5 pounds since the March Surgery, and 64.5 pounds overall. I am a very SLOW loser so don't go by my experience. Most people lose faster than me. A friend of mine had surgery at Cooper in May, and since January she has lost over 75 pounds, and has lost more than me since May than I have since my surgery in March. Another friend had her surgery done in Vineland and also had a good result. Feel free to ask any other questions! I wish you the best on you search! Nancy
  13. mambomama

    March 2012 Vsg

    Hello all, Just checking in, I am down 63 pounds total, 30 before surgery and 30 since surgery on March 1. Even though I am not losing fast, I am content and thrilled to see the progress. I went to the plus section at Macys and they did not have my size so I ventured up to the misses section and was SHOCKED that I fit perfectly in a size 18 capri!!!! It fit so well without a stretch waist. I am going to savor those times! My blood work showed that my HA1c was elevated (worse) since my surgery which is a mystery, but I am just getting stronger and more certain to keep working to get healthier! I hope you are all well! Nancy
  14. mambomama

    2 Year Surgiversary

    Congratulations! I too am more of a slow and steady loser so it is encouraging to see your losing weight did not stop after 6 months! I can't wait to see your goals accomplished!

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