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Gastric Bypass Patients
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Everything posted by MikeIL

  1. When I began this journey at the beginning of 2018 I was 426 pounds. Can't tell you measurements because all my clothes were in X's and not inches. But for reference, I was in a 5x shirt from Casual Male. I only wore sweatpants and those were also a 5x. People only saw me in clothes and the comment I often heard was that I carried my weight well. Being 6'1" I had the advantage of being tall and heavy vs short and heavy. It was all an illusion. Medically I was prediabetic, on CPAP, could only sleep on my back, had knee pain and sweated like a frog fresh out of the pond in any weather over 72 degrees. 7 months post surgery and I am down 139 pounds. My A1C is 4, off the CPAP, I can sleep on my side, I can walk all day and not have knee pain...unfortunatley I still sweat a lot. My physical appearance has changed in visible ways. Prior to surgery, I use to measure my weight loss and gain by how close I was to my steering wheel. If I was rubbing it then it was a bad week, if I could fit my hand between my belly and the wheel it was a good week (I avoided scales, I knew I was fat and honestly just wanted to get by in life). I look down at my steering wheel now and I see the marks where my belt scratched up the leather. Now there are a good 10 inches between me and the steering wheel. I can get in a car accident and not worry that the airbag is going to kill me. I can see the weight loss in my face: I also see the weight loss around my body. My shoulders are boney, my arms have lots of skin, my butt sags, the skin just hangs everywhere. I'm down to a 2x and my waist is in a 50 pant which needs a belt. I hold these clothes out in front of me as I'm about to put them on and I say to myself, "There is no way this will fit me" or "Boy this is gonna look tight" and the clothes fits perfect. Not tight and hides my sag well. Overall I don't want to sound like I'm not delighted, but I'm realizing just how large I was...and honestly still am. I wish I were brave enough to take a photo so I could show you what I mean, but I can't believe after all this weight coming off I'm still so big. I sit and there is a huge belly still in my lap. My thighs are huge. Maybe as I continue to lose weight these two areas will decrease dramatically, but it seems like there must be 150 lbs there alone. I never thought for a moment that after my surgery I was going to have a thin, fit beach body. I hoped though that it would be less fat looking when dressed and in public. I almost feel like I want to tell people "Yeah, but just half a year ago I was..."
  2. Walking up and down stairs without losing breath and having to step onto a step with both feet before taking the next. Enjoyed the summer without being a complete sweating mess in the mildest of heat Going into public places and not worrying if I'll fit in a chair Flying to see relatives and fitting in a plane seat Took an Amtrak cross country and stayed in a sleeper. Was able to sit in the booths in the dining car Shopping at actual dept stores for clothes and not getting screwed by Casual Male prices Walked the 12 mile trail along the southern rim of the Grand Canyon
  3. I just passed my one year anniversary on the 12th.
  4. So I'm 13 days away from my 6 month anniversary and I'm 114 pounds down. I have to ask...how do y'all deal with the excess skin? I sometimes sit down and I feel like I sat on a throw someone left on the sofa. I lay down in bed and sometimes I have to lift my butt and pull my skin out so it's flat. When I brush my teeth my upper arms applaud me as they slap against my armpits. I realize that without a skin removal surgery it's something we have to live with, but for those who are a year or two out, and haven't had a reduction surgery, does your skin firm up on its own at all?
  5. MikeIL

    How many laproscopic holes?

    I have five. Three are very small and can hardly be seen. One, right above my belly button, is visible but looks like a bad scratch. The main one, the one on my left side, will be with me forever. It is the main entry for the surgery and was the bane of my existence following my surgery. I had to back the wound twice a day and it took forever to heal.
  6. Common thought, but drop it from your thinking. Your pouch isn't going to stretch out right now. That takes time. You have other things to think about so don't waste your time with this worry. Use this time get to know your new stomach. Few things to try: Every time you think to yourself "hungry" switch it with the word "thirsty" and take a sip of water. Get some liquid in your mouth and down that throat. Flavor your water. Brighten up your taste buds' day. Switch it up so you have something different and tasty in your routine.
  7. Here are some of my tips/observations from my surgery. I had GB on Nov 12, 2018. 1) Accept and treasure the pain medication. It's not a weakness to take the meds. If they end up making you a little nauseous don't give up, ask for some nausea meds to help balance it. The first 24-hours they will probably give you morphine and then after that a liquid hydrocodone. There is no reason for you to be in pain. 2) Walk as soon as you can (this is where the pain meds help). Walk the halls, walk around the room, move as much as you can. 3) For the first few weeks after your surgery, don't trust a fart, or rather trust that it will probably be accompanied by a little liquid. It's not a big deal and nothing drastic, just know that things happen. 4) The 3-4 days you are in the hospital after your surgery will fly by and you'll be home before you know it. I brought books, work, crosswords...didn't touch one of them the entire time I was in. I walked, slept, sat in a chair, played a game or two on my tablet, and gave a pool's worth of blood samples. 5) Last thing would be don't stress little pains. Pay attention to the things your doctor stresses like bloating in the belly, swelling in the legs, etc... But the minor pains and aches could just be part of the healing process and you won't really know what is what until you are a few weeks out and your body has healed some.
  8. It's actually going very well, thanks for asking. I'm down 61 pounds and I've had no major issues. There was a 4-5 day span about a month ago that I was having trouble drinking liquids but it passed pretty quick. I've had no stomach dumping and only experienced "foamies" a handful of times. Those few times were real doozies but they all passed within 20-30 minutes. The biggest issue I had was more of an annoyance vs an actual problem. Because of my size and the way my belly was shaped I was left with an open wound where the surgeon did his main entry. It took a full month of packing it twice a day until it finally healed. It was uncomfortable and limited me from moving as much as I would have liked to.
  9. This site has been a cold bucket of reality splashed right in my face. During the 6 months of classes and pre-surgery discussions, everything was presented to me as -- follow these rules, do these things and you'll have a smooth recovery. IF you do this you'll get dumping syndrome, so don't do that. You'll be fine. IF you do that you'll have horrible chest pains and shortness of breath, so don't do that. You'll be fine. Now I read posts all over about how people do follow the rules and they experience both. So I should expect at some point I'm going to get dumping syndrome, dry heaves, vomiting, and cramps. I can only hope they will be few and far between and I should work on trying to avoid them, right?
  10. I thought I had made it through unscathed. Since my surgery on the 12th I have not had any issues with my stomach. No nausea, no cramps, no hunger pains. I was actually taking in liquids pretty easily...two 33 oz bottles a day with no problem. Suddenly yesterday my stomach started having issues with any liquid I took in. I've tried cold, room temp, warm and hot. It's a twisting discomfort when the liquid hits my stomach...like a mini charlie horse. I've been plowing through and forcing myself to suffer through the pain, but it would suck if this is my future. Anybody else have a similar thing happen?
  11. Bless all you people who went right back to work. I had my surgery Monday and I am wiped out. I am definitely working from home next week.
  12. I am an account manager, total desk job. I was curious how long others were off work due to their surgery.
  13. MikeIL

    November Bypassers!!

    Clear liquids for 10 days.
  14. MikeIL

    Non Plain Water Drink Choices

    I know this comment is a bit old but I gotta ask...were you warned off lemons by your doctor? I was told absolutely no citrus because it will increase the acids in your stomach.
  15. MikeIL

    November Bypassers!!

    Just got the call from the hospital. I'll be checking in at 5:30am on Monday, 11/12, and under the knife at 7:00am.
  16. It's not mentioned. The instructions provided say just 3-4 shakes a day and lots of water. If you mix your own from powder it says just use water. I asked in the final pre-surgery class and they stressed the rules. It's kind of frustrating because upon reviewing this site I see that other people had less strict rules. I mean, it was still essentially shakes and water, but I see some folks were OK'd for broth once in a while.
  17. My surgery is scheduled for the 12th of this month. I've been on the PreOp Liquid Diet since Monday AM. My surgeon wants his patients on it for two weeks prior to surgery. It hasn't been as bad as I thought it would be with hunger issues. I've had terrible headaches from the caffeine withdrawal but they seem to be getting better. I'm a huge coffee drinker. I drink 4 Premier Protein shakes (chocolate and vanilla) spaced throughout the day and lots of water. Water water water. My only trigger for temptation is the shakes. I hate them. I've started watering them down to dilute the taste. I crave something just to get rid of the taste. Brushing my teeth only masks it. Today I cheated and I drank a cup of chicken broth. 😢 I feel bad about it.
  18. MikeIL

    November Bypassers!!

    I'm on the books for the 12th. Currently doing the two-week liquid diet, started on Monday the 29th. My only struggle right now is the caffeine withdrawal.