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Gastric Sleeve Patients
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About leebick

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    Bariatric Guru
  • Birthday 07/26/1956

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  1. leebick

    Arthritis pain, bad knees

    I am 28 month post-sleeve. My surgeon laughed when I told her my fears about not being able to take Ibuprofen post-surgery. She said that it's one of those "old beliefs" that don't really hold up anymore... like not drinking from straws or chewing gum. All I know is, I've taken ibuprofen regularly when my back acts up and I've not had a problem with it
  2. leebick

    Non Scale Victories

    I just saw a picture of myself, posted on FB, that was taken a few days ago at our annual CousinsReunion. I don't hate myself, I don't look awful; I look like a normal human being. I'm in tears.
  3. The only things here I can agree with is that we are all different, and that the joy of being healthy is amazing. I really had no post-surgical pain AT ALL. I had some muscle tenderness the first day, but I've had worse abdominal pain from doing too many sit-ups.
  4. I actually eat quite a bit of cheese. I have problems with many meats, especially beef. Just doesn't sit well. I eat it, but BOY do I miss a good steak! My protein staples are fish, eggs, cheese, chicken, cottage cheese. I don't do the low fat cheese, either, but I can get a full lunch out of a Babybel cheese!
  5. Oh, mostly bad foods. Popcorn, ice cream, potato chips, mashed potatoes (especially with pan juices/sauce), beer, cookies, pie... all things that aren't part of a healthy lifestyle, but are a part of life. I have learned to dish out a very small portion and then put the rest away before I ever start eating. That way, I don't mindlessly keep noshing on something. As I said, I didn't have this surgery to be on a strict diet for the rest of my life, so I don't have a problem with having these treats occasionally- operative word being OCCASIONALLY. Rare treats, serious portion control, eating slowly and chewing completely (mindful eating), getting temptation out of the way are all practices I am still trying to make into habits for all my eating, but they are seriously important when it comes to the "easy" foods. "Easy" foods get ugly, too, because not only are they mostly empty calories, but by the time they flip my switch and I realize I'm done, I'm actually WAY done, WAY too over-full, and then I'm in for some ugly hours. Mostly I can keep this under control, but sometimes it gets out of hand, like when we are at the movies and my husband buys the popcorn and it's just there, I'm paying attention to the show and not to my hand going into the bag, into my mouth, into the bag... Even at two years post-surgery, even with the successes I've had, I STILL have to pay attention to this new eating style!
  6. leebick

    Bruising like crazy!

    IF it's just in the tummy area, I wouldn't worry. I had some really impressive bruises while I was healing; fortunately they didn't hurt! If the bruises are all over the place, on your arms, legs, etc, call the doctor. (I wish I could find the picture of my belly-bruise. It covered about half of my lower/side belly!)
  7. I honestly had no pain from my surgery. I had laparoscopic surgery, so my incisions were only about an inch long. There were 4 of them and they were held together with "glue" and had a piece of tape over each. The only pain I had was some gas pain, up in my left armpit. As long as I didn't move a certain way, I was fine. It dissipated after a few hours.
  8. leebick

    Im exhausted 11 days post-op need advice

    I don't know what you are drinking for protein shakes but it sounds like you could only be getting about 400 calories a day. No wonder you are exhausted! Talk to your doctor; make sure you are getting enough protein and calories.
  9. I had VGS surgery on 9/15/16; this was almost 18 months from my introductory class for the program. I put off the decision to have surgery almost 6 months, and then due to scheduling issues rescheduled a couple of times before finally having the surgery. My high weight once I decided to start the program was 287- so I have lost 104 pounds as of this morning. I was pretty dutiful in following the eating plan, both pre- and post- surgery until I was about 9 months post-op. By that time, I'd bypassed my surgeon's weight goal for me by about 7 pounds. At that point, I did some serious thinking about what I wanted out of this surgery, and made the following decisions: First, I didn't have this surgery, this elective mutilation, to NOT be successful. There is no way on this Earth that I am going to backslide and let my weight creep up. Second, I also decided that I don't want to be "on a diet" for the rest of my life. I have ALWAYS been on a diet, for as long as I can remember. I didn't have this surgery so I'd have to continue to always be on a diet. Third, I have to be happy with my life. SO... I decided that I was going to have to balance these things, figure out how to make eating "normal" food work without gaining weight. I've tested things out, learned my limits, learned how to eat and drink that work with my insides and my head. OCCASIONALLY I will eat pizza, nachos, drink beer, have ice cream or pie, etc., but NOT all the time, and NOT in large quantity. Fortunately my sleeve restriction is still snug; I can eat about 1/2 to 3/4 cup of food at a sitting, depending on the food. What does this mean for something like pizza? I take one piece, I eat a couple of bites of the edge and also the toppings. I don't eat any of the crust, except those 2 bites of the edge. Believe me, it's enough for me, and if it's not, I"ll eat the topping only from part of another piece. I've tested out all my favorite foods, and yes, sadly, there are some things that I just don't eat because I can't, because they make me feel gross (haven't given up on 'good' bread yet, but rice and pasta are things of my past). I've learned that some things go down way too easily, and so I know where to be careful, what to avoid. I've also learned (take a deep breath, hard to admit) that I'm probably never going to weigh 135 pounds again, and that, regardless of my weight, I'll always feel like I need to lose 10 or 20 pounds. I don't think that's the after effect of being fat... I think it's the association of being a woman in the USA. It's OK... I can accept these things, because I have come so far and been so successful- in my doctor's eyes, in my husband's and daughter's eyes, and mostly, IN MY OWN OPINION. There are still things I can't do (eat and drink at the same time) or things I forget to do (eat slowly/chew lots) and I pay the price. HOWEVER... It's all been worth it. I am HAPPY. I don't wake up in the morning and hate myself for being weak, for being fat, for eating and drinking when I swore I wasn't going to. I went to Disney World with my daughter this summer and for the first time EVER (we've been going annually for 20 years), I happily posed for photos. She and I haven't had a photo in front of the castle since she was 6 (and she'll be 25 next week). I don't hate shopping for clothes anymore. I went to the pool in a bathing suit IN PUBLIC this summer and wasn't embarrassed. Most importantly, I look in the mirror and LIKE what I see there. Sometimes I even think, "Wow, you look cute!" I realize how much of my life I let go by because I felt fat, miserable, unsuccessful, unlovable, and I wish I'd done this surgery 10 years ago. I don't hate myself and my life anymore, and that is worth SO MUCH MORE than anything I could ever eat, in any quantity, at any restaurant. You know how they say, "Nothing tastes as good as skinny feels?" That's sort-of true, but being skinny (and I'm not) doesn't hold a candle to not hating yourself all the time. I am just so damned happy now!
  10. A 2 month old horse and 4 guinea pigs!
  11. My two-year was yesterday. I've not lost any weight in almost a year, but I also have not gained any; can't remember the last time that happened! Overall I am pleased; I know I could lose that last 20 pounds (for MY goal, not my surgeons- I hit that within 6 months) if I'd get back into the gym, cut back on the carbs, cut out the beer. All in all I am happy, though. I had no co-morbidities going in, but now my knees and back feel so much better, my blood pressure is down, my blood sugar is great! I am living my life again, enjoying food but in SUCH moderation, hanging out with friends, and just enjoying my life! Best of all, I can look in the mirror and smile; I often think I look cute, or good... nothing that has ever happened in my adult life before having this surgery!
  12. leebick

    Home stretch

    One of the things I have to be careful of when I have anesthesia is a form of vertigo. It seems to be associated with they way they have to position my head during intubation and the length of time I'm held in that position. When I had my surgery I had six forms of anti-nausea medication and they finally had to give me Zofran in my IV to calm things down (but we anticipated this). Although you don't seem to be having anesthesia-induced nausea, you still need to get a handle on it somehow. Call your doctor and tell them you are suffering from nausea to the point where you cannot sit up or drink anything. See if they will prescribe a scopolamine patch to help with the nausea/dizziness, or ask if you can try taking Bonine (they are chewable... you could smush up 2 with a minimal amount of water and try to get them down- IF your doctor says I's OK- you are barely post-surgical so don't do this on my suggestion!!!). If you can beat the nausea, you'll be able to drink. Concentrate on just getting some fluid down; dehydration is a much bigger problem than lack of protein. Good luck- being nauseous can make this all a whole lot more difficult than it needs to be.
  13. leebick

    How old were you when?

    I was 60 when I had my sleeve surgery- two years ago TODAY. I was just tired of waking up every day and thinking about my weight, how awful I looked, how tired I was, how much of a loser I was to let myself get that big. I was jut tired of hating myself every day, so I did it. Wish I'd done it 10 years earlier!
  14. leebick

    Post op pain - be honest

    Pain? I didn't have any. HOWEVER... nobody here is saying whether they had laparoscopic surgery, robotic surgery, open surgery. The pain levels from each will differ. My surgery was laparoscopic and done robotically, and I really had no pain at all. I had a couple of sharp gas pains high under my left armpit on the first night, but as long as I didn't move in a certain way, I was fine. No incisional pain, no internal pain at all. I had a terrible time with nausea from the anesthesia on the first night, though. It was expected; I had been through this when I had my gall bladder out 23 years ago. The tanked me up on all kinds of anti-nauseants, and I was fine in the recovery room until they wheeled me down the hall and into the elevator. Then I was MISERABLE. The nurse finally got them to put something in my IV (zofran maybe? Don't really remember) which was the 7th anti-nausea medication. It kicked in and I was fine after that. I was up and walking within 6 hours of my surgery, pushing my IV pole with me, and went home on the morning of day 3. (Day 1 being day-of surgery). For the record, I stayed home from work way longer than necessary, but I had a ton of "use 'em or lose 'em" sick days. I could have gone back after a week, although I was pretty tired and still trying to juggle the eating/exercising thing. I definitely should have gone back at the end of 2 weeks, but it was a glorious fall and I had sick days begging to be used, so I stayed out another week- totally unnecessary, but I felt like treating myself to a post-surgical vacation.
  15. I found that I like the powdered protein shake mix MUCH better than the ready to drink kind. I used Syntrax nectars, mixed with unsweetened vanilla almond milk (I like the Almond Breeze or Walmart/store brands better than Silk). I know it'll take time to order it, but you are probably looking at 4 weeks of liquid diet (2 pre-op, 2 post-op) so you will need to find something you like- or at least don't actively hate. I bought a shaker bottle at Walmart, the kind with the metal-coil ball in the bottom, and everything mixes pretty well. For a savory option, I made my own chicken and beef broth. Roast the beef bones on 375 for about an hour, then simmer them in bouillon broth (I got mine at the Dollar Tree) with onion, garlic, carrot (can't remember if I used celery or not). Drain out all the solids and keep the broth (you'll probably need to remove the fat layer after the first chilling). You make the chicken the same way, except I used the carcass from a grocery store rotisserie chicken (I always freeze the carcasses when we are finished with the chicken- but you could buy one, pick the meat and freeze it- some day in the not-too-distant future you'll be able to use it in soup, stew, chicken salad, etc.)