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Gastric Sleeve Patients
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Everything posted by Tracy1978

  1. Tracy1978

    Stigma with WLS

    Today was hard. I have surgery this Friday 20th. I've been eating the pre-op "envelope meal" diet almost 2 weeks and today the office ordered Cheesecake Factory. It's not their fault that I made the decision to do the surgery, but I still wanted to kick their chairs out from underneath them. It's literally all I can do to keep myself from saying "Eff it" and going for a steak and beer. I know I know, I am so close to surgery; I wont sabotage myself. One other thing that has been on my mind is how some people I have told have reacted to my news. I honestly didn't tell people for a long time about what I was doing because I didn't want to listen to everyone's opinions. I've worked in the medical field for 20 years and if I have questions I know who to ask. It doesn't stop people from saying things that are seriously discouraging: - "Oh wow. Can't you lose it on your own without having surgery?" - "I could NEVER do a liquid diet for that long." - "Haven't people died getting that done?" - "Awwww! Your surgery is the day of my party?? That sucks! We were having a Mexican food buffet too! I know that's your favorite. Well, at least you are missing for a good reason." - "I'm fat too, but there is no way I would have surgery." - "Let's go to {insert restaurant/bar here} before you have surgery since you wont be able to do it after that." - "You know you can't have carbonated beverages the rest of your life, right?" - "Don't people gain their weight back most of the time anyway?" It's hard to tell if people are trying to make me feel bad about my decision because they don't understand it, or it they are jealous or just being downright hateful. I don't get it. I just needed to vent. Today was the hardest day I've had so far and I needed to get that off my chest. I keep telling myself that by this weekend it will all be over and I can start focusing on living a normal life again, just healthier this time.
  2. Tracy1978

    July Sleeve

    1000 mg Lysine daily is known to help with hair loss. You could give it a try and see if it works for you. Its a cheap solution if so.
  3. I know how you feel. I lose in weird increments. I try ask myself when the last time was I actually lost weight. Ten pounds doesn't sound like a lot but try carrying a ten pound bag of potatoes with you all day. Plus, your body is in shock - you have really been through an ordeal. Be good to yourself. I promise your body will catch up eventually. It just needs time to get settled after such a major procedure. You got this and everything will be great!!!!
  4. Tracy1978

    SOUP, 911

    I was forced to buy about 200 worth of food from my surgeon's office. I ended up throwing most of it away. Maybe its just me but I found the soups and shakes to be gritty and bland. Huge waste of money in my opinion. If I were you, I would buy a container of protein powder and add it to homemade soups.
  5. Tracy1978

    July Sleeve

    I know this sounds bad, but when I hit my 4 week plateau and nothing changed I decided to pick a day during the week to eat whatever I wanted (without feeling sick). After that week I dropped 5 pounds. Its like if your body gets too into a routine the scale refuses to move. lol
  6. Tracy1978

    July Sleeve

    Same here! July 20th and I too am down about 50 pounds.
  7. Tracy1978

    Depression and Anxiety Post-Op

    I too suffer from anxiety an depression; I have for at least 20 years. I've been on several medications since diagnosed, but the one I remain on consistently is Zoloft. I take 200 mgs a day, which, from what I understand is a pretty high dose. I also have Xanax and Valium to help control my panic attacks. I'd be lying if I didn't say I self medicated with alcohol as well pre-op. It was hard getting it under control but I did. Since surgery, 9 weeks ago today, I am still on my medication. However, I haven't needed the Xanax or Valium. I feel like the exercise I am getting is helping me cope with the stress to the point that I don't need those medicines anymore. Also, seeing weight come off has really helped boost my morale overall. I haven't tried to lessen my Zoloft dose, but as things progress I plan on trying. Over all I feel better both mentally and physically.
  8. Tracy1978

    July Sleeve

    Sounds yummy! I just might have to give that a try. Looks like it would be high in protein too from the yogurt. I could probably add some protein powder to it too....Thanks for the suggestion!
  9. Tracy1978

    July Sleeve

    I'm about 8-9 weeks out right now. I can eat pretty much what I want just much smaller portions. I make much better decisions now too when it comes to meals. For example, Breakfast I have a triple zero oikos yogurt and coffee. Lunch is usually some sort of soup or Kroger brand omelette bites (4 count). When I get home from work around 3:30 I have a snack. Usually v8 with some hummus and crackers or cheese spread with crackers. Then we make dinner about 6-7pm. I make stuff for tacos but I usually make a small taco salad no shell with some ranch on the side. Or, a few pieriogies and chunky marinara. When I go out to eat I no longer order my own meal. I just eat off my husbands and daughter's plate. I refrain from eating any appetizers or free starters like some places have: bread, rolls, chips and salsa or peanuts. I don't buy a drink at restaurants because I cant drink while I eat anyway. So I am a cheap date these days! It's been so nice on my wallet.
  10. My Niece and her fiance announced their engagement a year ago this month. At the time, I had only been to one diet visit with the clinic I went to for surgery and I was still debating if I wanted to have the procedure done. A month after their announcement, she asked me to be her maid of honor. But inside I was already dreading it. At that time, I had maybe 2 outfits that fit correctly and was always uncomfortable. I knew I was going to have a struggle trying to find a dress that fit and that I could afford. I was already thinking of how fat I was going to look in the pictures....I felt like I would ruin them. I never said it out loud, but I was certain she would regret asking me to do it due to my size. That is very mean and shallow thinking on my part. I know my niece loves me regardless of my size. But that is the way I thought of myself at the time. I hated looking in the mirror. I hated having my picture taken. I flat out didn't like looking at myself. Being part of the wedding didn't make the decision to have the surgery, as I had already been considering it. But it did help push me in the right direction. Here it is a year later, post op, and lost 40+ pounds. The best part? I went from a size 28 down to a 22 in 2 months. Not only was I able to buy a dress at a regular department store, but I ordered in ONLINE and it FIT!!! Something I have NEVER done!!!! First pic is of me and my niece the day she asked me to be the MOH. I know you can't see my body but that's as good as it gets. I had to approve the photo to be posted and I wouldn't have if my body was in it. lol The other is me in my dress!!!!! (Forgive the awful lighting and basement background, lol)
  11. Tracy1978

    My Niece's wedding

    I totally understand what you mean. I felt like people would be looking at me in the wedding pics like, "Daaaannnnnng that chick is Huuuuuuge! and not at my beautiful niece on the best day of her life.
  12. You could have had so many more worse things than what you had. Look at it this way, you have to have some fat and dairy in your diet. Avocado is awesome for you. You literally probably ate 10 bites at the most. You would have loaded it up and ate the whole thing pre-op right? This is all about a life change. You're not going to be able to avoid going out to at all the time. This was a good test for you and I think you passed with flying colors. My first trip to Chipotle included rice in my bowl so already you are doing better than I did! LOL!!!!!
  13. Tracy1978

    Food Before and After Photos

    Well, EFF!!!!! I had no idea. Knowledge is power, thanks for sharing.
  14. Tracy1978

    Labor Day Recipes

    4 large chicken breasts and a whole bottle of sweet baby Ray's buffalo sauce in a crock pot on low for 4 hours then turn to high for two more. Shred with a fork and you got a versatile meal you can eat post op. Get Hawaiian buns and make sandwiches or use it in tacos, top as salad with it. Make nachos. It's low fat, low carb and low calorie but full of flavor. It's been one of our go to's.
  15. Tracy1978

    Food Before and After Photos

    Went to lunch with my mom today at Cracker Barrel. I got my favorite meal. Pre-op I would have gotten the dinner size with 3 sides and ate every single bite. Today I got the lunch portion with two sides. I don't order drinks at restaurants anymore either, just water. No reason to pay 2.50 for something I can only take a few sips of. Anyway, here is my before and after lunch plate. Ill have the rest for dinner.
  16. I drank beer and soda up until 3 days pre-op. I also got myself out of an event I didn't want to go to using the "I'm on the pre-op diet" excuse while I was sitting at home drinking beer. bahaha, sorry I had to laugh at myself for that one. Seven days post op I got my cycle. The cravings were worse than they had ever been. I took a plain Hershey bar and broke it up and put one piece in my mouth at a time and sucked on it until it was melted liquid. Pure heaven. I've tried to drink regular coke since surgery but it tastes funny...it almost has a black licorice taste to it, which I hate. I think the Universe knew I wouldn't be able to stay away from it so now it tastes tainted. lol!
  17. Today I am 45 days out. I take my vitamins daily, get my fluids in with no problem and am tolerating food very well. I almost feel like I'm doing too well...reading some of the things on here have me perplexed. I have to remind myself that everyone is different, everyone heals differently. I'm down 38 pounds. Whenever I get the thought in my mind that I am not progressing fast enough I remind myself that this is the most weight I have lost in ages. I continue to gain and lose the same five pounds, then it finally falls off. Then I plateau and gain/lose the next 5 pounds. Like I said, its frustrating me to no end, but I am trying to be realistic with myself. Slow and steady wins the race, and I am giving my skin time to adjust to the loss as well. Observations and Weird sensations: Sometimes I can barely finish a yogurt while other times I can eat quite a bit more. (For example, a bean burrito from taco bell or a 6 inch sub on flatbread from Subway) I can feel the food shift in my stomach; I've never had that sensation before. Sadly, the sleeve doesn't get rid of PMS cravings. I still have to fight myself about eating crap. The difference is now I can talk myself out of it 95% of the time whereas before I was 95% sure I would eat it anyway. Since I am not consistently on sugar/carbs like I used to be I can actually feel myself crash from eating something carb/sugar rich. It's enough to make me not want to eat them. I've found if I've eaten a few bites too much, I can get rid of that feeling much faster by walking. Walking actually helps move my food. Before surgery, walking while I was stuffed was sheer torture. If I was overly full, I would feel that way for a long time. a couple hours even, before I would get any relief, I definitely feel restriction. I eat maybe a 1/4 to an 1/8 of what I used to. I can't throw up. I've had the sensation a few times and even tried to on one occasion that I overdid it by accident. I didn't feel the restriction til it was too late. I've since learned to slow down when I eat so I have time for my body to signal to me. But the point is, I used to be able to puke almost on command. Not so much anymore. Its not really worth going out to eat at a sit down restaurant. I cant eat like the rest of the folks. While that is a exhilarating feeling, I found myself sulking because I couldn't eat my favorite meal at Chuy's. I had to laugh at myself like really, Tracy? You have wanted to be thinner for years and now that you have the chance you are crying about a chimichanga? I still have to silence my inner fat kid on the daily. I'm hoping that becomes less and less. I didn't realize just how addicted i was to food and food routines. I'm slowly re-learning how to have fun without food or booze and how to incorporate exercise into daily life again.
  18. Tracy1978

    Adjusting to my new life

    Right?!?!? I'll chalk it up to PMS, lol!!!
  19. Tracy1978

    Taking emergen c

    Yes! I am about 6 weeks out and I have taken it since I got home from the hospital. I usually take it 2-3 times a week proactively. I have a 7 year old and every little bit helps. It really really works and felt like it helped me heal faster post op. I stir mine up until the carbonation is gone. I haven't had any issues with it.
  20. Tracy1978

    Lesson learned

    Before surgery my husband and I would go to Texas roadhouse on Wednesdays for date night, They have an 8 oz sirloin special for cheap. We would sit at the bar. Usually before dinner I would have at least 3-4 cans of light beer (so I didn't spend as much money at the restaurant trying to catch a buzz). We would order an appetizer and eat the bread and peanuts while we waited for it. Then we'd eat the app. Then the salad. Then the meal; steak and mashed potatoes. Not to mention I am drinking probably 3 large beers during the meal. Afterward, we'd go home and chill for a couple hours. Then I would go in and snack off anything we brought home. I celebrated a month post op this past week so I told my husband Id love to have some steak so we thought wed give it a try. Going in I knew I would NEVER be able to have what I used to have. But I missed our nights out together and thought it would be a good test. WOW. We sat at the bar and I ordered a beer. I know, I know I know - But I am an adult and I wanted to see how I would react to a beer. I couldn't even finish half of it. I only ordered a salad planning on eating off my husbands plate. I ate some peanuts but skipped the rolls. We got our salads and I was able to take about 3 bites. The meal came out and I literally had 4 tiny pieces of steak from my husbands meal. I was a so full I was sick!!!! It was a lesson to be had. No more beer for me, At least not for a long time. I felt like **** and it kept me from being able to have regular food because it was so bloating. I knew I couldn't drink after I started eating so I don't know why I even bothered. But at least I know now. And any thirst I had for beer is GONE. So, I don't have to worry about missing out on it. I can't believe how much I used to eat and it makes me sad that I let myself get that way. Its been rough replacing food with other things, but that's what I've been doing. I had let my life revolve around food and my next meal so much that I was missing out on actually living. Everyday is a new adventure and a new lesson.
  21. Tracy1978

    Lesson learned

    Thank you!!!! You get it exactly. For 30 of my 40 years I have been obese. I ate and drank what I wanted when I wanted. This has been a major change in my life. This hands down the hardest, most eye opening experience of my life. At this point I have been on a strict hardcore diet for at least the last 6-7 weeks. My husband has been a great support. I felt like we both deserved a night out as a treat. While we had a nice time and it was awesome to find out how cheap of a date I am now (it was good to get out as a couple again) we both agreed it just wasn't the same and that a we could find new things to do together that don't necessarily involve food. And yes, the surgery worked...and I am grateful for it. Part of learning to live again after WLS is definitely a learning curve. Just because you feel mentally prepared doesn't mean you wont have to deal with old habits. Its trial and error and you find what works best for you. Thanks for your words of encouragement.
  22. Tracy1978

    Lesson learned

    Maybe I should clarify that at my one month post op I was cleared to resume normal activities as tolerated. You know the saying opinions are like a-holes? This goes for doctors too. If you read these forums you will see just how different pre-op and post op diets/rules are depending on the surgeon or practice. As for beer "eroding" my staple line; Would you say the same thing if I said I drank a fountain coke? I could understand your worry if I had said I drank a six pack. The fact is beer is heavily carbonated, and like soda, we are to refrain from it because it is empty calories and can cause excessive gas - which you have after surgery anyway. Why on Earth would I do that? Because I am a normal human being and being social is part of that. I am not swearing off alcohol for life and I wanted to see how it effected me since I was cleared by my doctor. Thank you for your judgmental concern.
  23. Tracy1978

    July Sleeve

    I totally understand. I think I was expecting way too much from myself. My surgery was 7/20 and I had a stall for over two weeks. I just finally broke it Monday but then today of course I gained two pounds back. People tell me NOT to look at the scale but I feel like I have to. I've been trained to obsess over it. lol. I keep telling myself that my body has been thru a major change both physically and mentally. Its hard, but we need to be gentle with ourselves.
  24. Tracy1978

    July Sleeve

    My surgery was July 20th. I am down a little over 20 pounds and 8 inches overall. I hid a plateau that started after week one and ended this past weekend. l gained and lost the same five pounds which was frustrating. However, I am down a few more pounds from my lowest weight so I think I made it over that hump. I'm eating pretty much whatever I want want but I am sticking to easily digestible foods and I can only eat very small amounts. For example, we went to a Mexican restaurant with the family. I was only able to eat 2/3 of a soft taco. Instead of eating a basket of chips by myself I took 4 chips and broke them into small pieces and ate them slowly with the salsa and chatted. no one even noticed how little I was eating and I didn't feel deprived. It made me feel like I was back into the social groove; no funny looks and no questions and i was able to blend in. it was great. Best decision I ever made in my life.
  25. I am 3 weeks out from surgery today. I have gained and lost the same five pounds the last two weeks. I am the type of person that needs to see results. Not seeing them was getting really discouraging. I read about the plateau and that it can last anywhere between a week to over a month. That was slightly reassuring to find out it was normal but I caught myself last night stressing that I did the surgery for nothing and slipped into a state of self pity until I fell asleep. Thankfully, I got up this morning and I am down 2 pounds from my lowest weight. I am hoping that is the end of the plateaus for a while. It pisses me off that I still l crave all the garbage that got me where I am. I have pretty much been on a soft diet. The only foods I am supposed to avoid right now are steak, pork, white flour products, soda, alcohol, nuts, seeds, raw veggies and processed foods. I have around 800-1000 calories a day and a ton of non calorie, non carbonated drinks. I'll be cleared for a normal diet on Aug 21. I am getting in my fluids without any problem. Part of me felt like there was something wrong with me because I have been able to drink without issue since about post op day 5. I've read many posts where people can barely get down 2 oz of water at a time and here I am able to guzzle a 20 oz bottle without any issues except maybe some gas pain til I burp. I am tall and I have read that taller people have longer sleeves and it can make drinking much easier. My doc doesn't seemed concerned about it...it's just crazy how different people's bodies react to the surgery. I am not sure exactly what I expected to happen, but I am still dealing with head hunger and having to push old ways of thinking out of my head. I'ts hard and I guess I thought I had a pretty good handle on it even prior to surgery. I spent a year pre-op going to diet classes and researching the net to prepare for surgery. I must have been so busy preparing myself that I forgot to deal with my actual relationship with food. I know it will take some time and it will finally become second nature. But I would be lying if I said this isn't the hardest thing I have ever done for myself. The good news is reaping the benefits makes it all worth it.