Thursday, August 26, 2010

its my blog and i'll whine if i want to

I am not feeling so hot tonight. Pretty miserable, really. I haven't exercised in a whole week, and boy, can I ever feel it! I feel puffy, fat and icky. My bike bit the dust last week (handlebars are broken); then I was supposed to go for a short hike and tennis date with the hubby on Sunday but the weather was ghastly, stormy and like, 97 degrees with what seemed like 150% humidity (gotta luv late summer on Delmarva). My work schedule has been killer, and I spent my entire day off Tuesday at the outlets attempting school shopping for my 2 tweenage (13 and 11 y.o.) girls(and it did NOT go well). I haven't been getting much sleep (mostly due to my work schedule) and as a result, I am suffering a major fibromyalgia flare(probably the worst i have had since my bypass surgery). My knees, hips and elbows hurt so flippin bad I just want to cry, and i certainly don't want to work out. I brought my exerbands to work with me and used them for about 10 min. I am debating a beach walk in the am, but if my knees are still hurting, I may settle for a stroll on the paved bike path. ANY form of activity will be better than none! Ok, whining over! on to happier, more blogworthy thoughts! The other day I made some of Eggface's BITES, that were AWE-some! they were a broccoli/cheese version with muenster and sharp white cheddar. so delish! even you non-ops should go on over to her blog and try some of her recipes! Today wasnt a terrible day for me foodwise. I did do some grazing (mooo) but for the most part i had WLS friendly fare. For breakfast I made egg-foo young with baby bella mushrooms, shallots, and peas... kept me full until the afternoon, which is when I should have made a protein shake, but didnt and thus the grazing began! I baked 2 batches of roasted chick-peas; a plain salted version and a 'muy caliente' version with garlic, onion, paprika and piquin chili powders! nom-nom-nom my 11 yo LOOOOOves the salted ones! I mixed up a batch of my "bean salad" and brought some of that to work, it has black beans and black-eyed peas with bell pepper, onions, white corn,crumbled cheese and Good Seasons Italian salad dressing, protein packed and keeps in the fridge for almost a week! (it lasts longer in fridge if you don't put the cheese in until you are ready to eat, otherwise the cheese gets mushy and ewwww) My friend Jenna and I cooked for our church service tonight, I made a WLS friendly chicken pot pie and she made a partially sugar free banana pudding, they went over VERY well. My pot pie is very simple, cubed/shredded cooked chicken, a bag of thawed,frozen mixed veggies, one can each of cream of celery and cream of chicken soup thinned with 1/2c of milk and 1/2 c chicken stock, add white pepper, kosher salt, onion and celery powder to taste, mix well and top with 1/2 of a can of crescent roll dough cut into very thin strips and latticed on top, bake at 375 until dough is golden brown, DONE. Seriously, its that easy! I really load it with chicken to up the protein. This usually feeds 4 (3 non-ops + me) with leftovers (of course tonites version had to feed 40!) BTW I had about 1/2 c of the banana pudding, and no dumping... yaaay ;) I am LOVING: 1. Trident Fruit Sensation Tropical Fruit SF gum (i know/ i know... u aren't supposed to chew gum after WLS but I cant give it up and its a great way to keep from snacking) 2. roasted chick peas Todays Highlights: 1. I found a bike on Craigslist that i can possibly afford, and I plan to call in the am...crossing fingers its still avail and decent

Sunday, August 22, 2010

how do you spell Satan? I spell it A-U-C-E (all u can eat)

I haven't posted in a while, I have had a busy week. On a sad note, I went to a memorial for a fourteen year old boy (a classmate of my daughter) who drowned in the river that runs through our downtown, such a tragic loss for our community. My heart aches for his parents and family. It was a very touching tribute to a young man who was loved very much by everyone who knew him. I also celebrated my birthday this week, and yesterday (Friday) my family traveled over two hours to the Sight and Sound Theater in Lancaster, PA to see "Jacob". This was my first experience with the SST and it was AMAZING! We will be making this a yearly family trip, for sure! Our little getaway to Dutch country was not without pitfalls...we were in a group of 20 from our church and the group decided to eat at a famous ALL YOU CAN EAT BUFFET. Now as my fellow WLS buddies know, those are DIRTY words to a GBP patient! All those choices, dancing through my mind as I type, I felt like Templeton at the county fair! I asked the waitress if I could have a child's price and she agreed, which was nice, it would have been even more painful if I had to pay 22 bucks my dinner! I had just a couple of bites of each, mind you, but oh i felt soooo naughty! cheesy mashed potatoes, chicken and dumplings, green bean casserole and a honeywheat roll with whipped butter! They had a chocolate fountain!! I restrained myself and only dipped ONE piece of fresh pineapple in the fountain...mmmm so yummy. Now my meal wasn't completely composed of Satan's white carbs, i also had a slice of roast turkey, and some rotisserie chicken. After I had digested for a while, I even indulged in 3 bites of the most amazing cheesecake I have ever had! I was worried I would have a severe dumping episode from all the carbs and rich food, but i just had a little bit of heart pounding which went away in about 5 minutes. I dodged a bullet on that one! For those reading this who dont know what "dumping" is, let me explain...when you have WLS that re-routes the intestines, if your meal consists of carbohydrates and moves too quickly from your pouch to the intestines, your blood sugar will spike and your pancreas "dumps" out a bunch of insulin to counteract the amount of sugar in the bloodstream. This can result in: a pounding heart, sweating, blurred vision, nausea, vomiting and/or diarrhea, and intense abdominal pain. Sounds like fun huh? Oh yeah, if your idea of fun is rolling around on the floor in pain then having to make a mad dash for the nearest bathroom, it doesn't get any better! But, if you don't want to experience that type of "fun" you quickly learn what foods cause that feeling, and then it is a behavior modifier (kinda like those meds they give to alcoholics so they get sick everytime they drink). I admit that there are times that I want a particular food so bad that I am willing to risk it, and it usually ends in disaster. Usually I say to my hubby, "please remind me of this the next time I want to eat (insert food here)" to which he replies "ok I'll remind you, but it wont do any good" and he does, and it doesnt, and the whole process repeats. Pathetic, i know, but that is the ugly side of food addictions. I have been really bad about exercising this week. Hubby and I have a tennis date and short "hike" planned for tomorrow. I still haven't hooked up my scanner, no excuse for that, I am just lazy. Maybe tomorrow. Highlights of my week: 1. the trip to Lancaster and 2. I got my letter from my PCP recommending my plastic surgery! one step closer to perky boobs and a flatter tummy. 3. My fave blogger Eggface is having a Give-away contest for Sugar Free Torani syrups....I am so stoked, I hope I can win... Check out her AWESOME blog by clicking on the link on my page, you wont regret it! Looove her!

Monday, August 16, 2010

taking off the gloves

do you hear it? the alleluia chorus? bum-da-da-da! I finally have a title. It seems so basic and simple, which is probably why I couldn't come up with it til now (anyone who knows me (even a little) is probably painfully aware that i have a tendency to over complicate things)! well, now that we have that out of the way, on to more important schtuff... i am sooooo excited about the feedback i have been getting about this blog!!!! I told my hubby when i started that this was primarily for myself, but that if i inspired just one other person it would all be worthwhile, and i must say it is COMPLETELY worth while! Today i have been thinking about the psychological side of WLS; we all learned in our pre-op classes about how the mind takes a long time to catch up to the body when you lose weight so rapidly, but for me, that remains the same today, 5 YEARS post-op! How is it that 130+ pounds later i STILL feel like the fat girl??? Will i EVER be able to not mentally compare my body to that of other women i see? I have some friends who have been conquering their weight issues recently (some by way of WLS/ some non-op) and while i am TRULY happy for their success, i still burn with jealousy that i am not at goal, and i still feel inferior to them. and then i wonder if THEY ever feel this way... WHY??? WHY??? will i EVER truly permit myself to acknowledge my accomplishment? when will i stop mentally abusing myself about the weight gain? will weighing under 150(my personal *magic* number) suddenly, magically cure these feelings? i doubt it. uggh so much work to do on my psyche. So i am just taking it one day at a time, one step at a time, one rule at a time. I hereby remove my invisible, mental boxing gloves! Still really struggling with the fluid intake, although my new addiction to hot green tea is helping with that! it may even be crowding out my addiction to coffee, if you can believe that! Meal planning HAS to become a priority. It is important for everyone, not just us WLS peeps, so that you are getting a healthy, balanced diet with all the nutrients that you need. Just an FYI in case anyone is wondering, but I DO NOT count calories. I only focus on protein intake. Having said that, i do try to make healthy choices with regard to fats and carbs. I am a firm believer that full fats of the healthy variety are vital to any diet, especially one based on malabsorption like RNY. And white carbs are from the Devil, Himself. But, thats just me, please dont rely on my blog for advice on your plan. Thats what your doctor and his framed degree are for. Every WLS patient is different and what my body can/cannot tolerate will not be the same for you or anyone else. Manana, I plan to post some recipes and pics, so thats something to look forward to! Highlight of my day: my sissy bought me a uber-cute dress for my b-day and i wore it to church this morning, AND felt downright cute in it! [see, i dont beat myself up ALL the time ;)] Currently listening to : TikTok by Ke$ha--yes PLEEZ shoot me now, i 4got my phone and am relegated to a crappy radio station missing Pandora

Friday, August 13, 2010

whats in a name?

I STILL cant figure out what to name this little ditty-doo. Any suggestions will be seriously considered. I am partial to "the surgical marsupial" cuz ya know i have a pouch instead of a stomach??get it? but marsupials carry their young in their pouches so i guess thats kinda dumb. arrrrgghh! Why does this have to be so hard? How does "i have a pouch but im not a kangaroo" sound? omg thats beyond riduculous...HELP! Moving on...I had an interesting little adventure today...I had to take my daughter to the ortho doc to have her ankle re-Xrayed (she fractured it last month at cheerleading) so my Mom and the other kids went too. Since we were nearby, we went to the cemetary to visit my Dad's grave, and locked the keys (and ALL of our cell phones) in the car. seriously. At least it had stoppeed raining! I flagged this very kind lady down, who let me borrow her cell, called the hubby and tried to use the remote-key-via-the-cell-phone trick I had heard about. Didnt work!ugggh. So the hubby had to leave work early and come rescue us. Did I mention Dad is buried 45 minutes from home? But the wait was fairly pleasant, and I am calling it family bonding time! Hey, I will take what I can get! Afterwords we all went to McDonald's for lunch. They have these new Angus burger wraps, I ordered one without condiments and ate the meat, cheese and veggies, left the wrap. It is 1/2 of the large 1/3lb patty that they usually put on a bun, it was very filling and i felt better that I at least had some protein. I forgot and ordered a SF iced coffee with it, which i had to take home and by the time i could drink it, the ice had melted and it was all watered down and nastified(eeww)...I am really struggling with the "no drinking with meals" rule. The rest of the day my eating was pretty crappy, only 1/3 of the protein i should have had and im not sure i even drank more than 8 oz all day...oh well today is done, tomorrow will be better. One of the most crucial things I need to remember to do is plan out my meals, especially when I have a busy day scheduled! otherwise I just eat crap or skip eating all together. I am going for my early am beach walk in the morning (if its not raining) I have hardly exersized this week and i am definetly feeling the difference.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

design mistakes and my "rules"

Ok everyone, my friend advised me that the pagelayout/color scheme I had chosen probably wasnt the best choice, as the "reversed out text" can screw with peoples eyeballs. So voila'! I changed it. (thanks for the tip J) i think this one suits me better anyway. As I am new to this whole blogging thing any advice is welcomed, so please feel free to make suggestions! I also want to thank all of you for your feedback, it really means alot and is very encouraging! After seeing Dr. Wynn and realizing that the weight gain is my own fault, I knew I had to get back on track. I figured the best way was to go "back to basics". The first thing I did was talk to my family about supporting me (aka kicking my rear-end when I get out of line), I started Googling everything I could think of about gastric bypass, and I joined a couple of online support groups. I started reading blogs by other GBP patients (check out my links to some other awesome blogs, you wont be sorry!)and I came up with my own personal plan to stick with. I gave myself "pouch rules" and posted encouraging notes all over my house. I put my before and after pics up on the fridge at eye level so that I have to confront my demons everytime I open that door. Then I figured I needed to start exercising so I came up with a plan to increase my activity. Thats probably the hardest for me, cuz I am a total couch potato and I love snuggling up and veggin out. Although, I will admit that I feel amazing after a decent workout! I started finding GBP friendly recipes and changed my eating habits. (drumroll pleez)I have lost 8 pounds in the past 4 weeks! I am actually enjoying my workouts, I am loving finding and trying new recipes, and now my hope is that this little blog o' mine will help keep me motivated! In case anyone is wondering...these are the "pouch rules" that I am following... 1. Increase water intake, sip lots of water throughout the day, 15 minutes before meal, drink large amount of water 2. Eat dense protein FIRST 3. NO drinking with meals/no drinking til 1 to 2 hours after finishing meal 4. make sure not to go longer than 5 hours between meals Sounds simple I know, but when you have been non-compliant for a long time, they are HARD bad habits to break. Oh great, now I have that song (you're a hard habit to break) in my head. I hate that. check out this great article"pouch rules for dummies" for more info I will post some before/after pics as soon as I can get the scanner hooked up to the laptop :) Highlights of my day: 1. got to take a nap 2. my PCP agreed to write the letter of medical necessity for my panniculectomy and breast reduction...YAAAAYYY! Currently listening to: you're a hard habit to break (over and over and over in my head )

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

my story

hmmm, where to begin? in 197* a baby girl was born in Wilmington, Delaware...oh wait, no one cares about THAT much history. Ok, just the basics...Hello my name is Susan, and I am a foodaholic. I am such a foodaholic that I had to have my insides surgically rearranged to keep me from killing myself. Seriously, obesity is a killer. And I used to weigh in at 310 pounds (btw i am 5 ft 3 on a good day, so as you can imagine, I was just about as big around as i was tall). I had high blood pressure, joint problems, chronic pain, sleep apnea, and the week of my WLS I was diagnosed with diabetes. So I wasn't kidding when I said my weight was killing me. I wore size 28 clothing (& they were TIGHT), I couldn't walk more than 100 yrds without getting winded, and forget about stairs! So about 7 years ago I started researching the lap band, which had only recently been approved. In my research I also learned alot about gastric bypass, but that seemed so extreme that I wasn't sure I wanted to go that route. After 2 years of researching i made an appointment with a bariatric specialist. After speaking with Dr. Wynn(, I decided that I needed to make a drastic, permanent change and decided on the gastric bypass (GBP) My surgery was on October 17, 2005. The day of my surgery I weighed in at 286 pounds. The weight started dropping off, I started working out regularly and in less than a year I lost over 12o pounds. I was wearing size 12's and loving life! The first few years were pretty easy as far as the weight loss went. I lost the weight and kept it off without really trying hard. But...about two years ago I started to gain weight. Just a little at a time, but over those 2 years it added up to 28 pounds! I went from my personal lowest weight of 161 to 190. The day I saw 190 on my scale I freaked. Completely. Now, I had been watching those numbers get a little higher each month, but I had good, no, GREAT excuses. Water weight, hormonal changes from my hysterectomy, medication I was taking for fibromyalgia, working the night shift, blah, blah , blah. But that is what they were, just excuses. So anyway, the day the demon scale read 190, I picked up my phone and dialed my surgeons number. The main reason I went was because I was convinced that I had stretched my pouch to the point that I was eating too much (I did seem to be eating almost constantly). Oh, and you can bet that I had read up on all of the new procedures that are available for tightening the pouch created by GBP. Ok, doc, get me back on the OR table and fix this. So imagine my suprise when Dr. Wynn said that she wasn't convinced that I had stretched my pouch, but instead she thought I was just "eating around" the bypass. I thought, "Me??? Noooo, there has to be something WRONG with the pouch, it cant be me!" She asked me 1. if I was eating my required amount of protein (umm, no) 2. was I drinking with meals (yes) 3. was I exercising (well, no) Hmmm, its me? why should I be surprised? my bad eating habits were what led me to have to get the guts re-routed in the first place. So in that moment, I had no more excuses. I had to admit it was because I had fallen off the wagon so-to speak and stopped using my tool the way it is meant to be used. For those of you who might be reading this that have not had or researched WLS, this is something that is often misunderstood. These procedures are not a cure or a fix-all. They are tools that the WLS patient has to use CORRECTLY, or else they don't work. I have known some people who had great success with WLS and wound up gaining EVERYTHING they lost back. And I had set myself up for that kind of failure. But Dr. Wynn said, "at least you came to see me when it was 2o pounds instead of 80!" Because that is actually the first rule of many I had broken. I stopped going to my regular bariatric check-ups, I did not surround myself with a WLS support system (because no matter how loving and well-meaning your family and friends are, non-WLS people cannot give you what you need to stay on track!). I also stopped following the pouch rules. But no more! I am back on track and I plan to stay here! Check out for great info on WLS. They offer education, tips, before/after photos, and its an online support mecca!

Sunday, August 8, 2010

the first post

hmmm...where to begin? well, first off, you may notice the "working title" of this little blog; I never realized how hard it would be to name something that you hope will reflect your personality to the world at large, so in this instance I thought honesty would be the best policy. I am open to suggestions, and encourage my readers, in fact BEG my readers to help me. Well, now as I read that last line, it seems almost obnoxious to think that anyone aside from my close family and friends would have ANY remote interest in what I might have to say. I am NOT a writer, and any of my english teacher friends will probably cringe at my grammer and sentence structures! (just fair warning) This is not my first attempt at blogging, unfortunately my first blog succumbed to a dour self-fufilling prophecy of failure. I think I know where that one went wrong, it was more of a "the world as I see it" musing, and lets face it, does anyone really care about how I see the world? probably not. But this time I have a purpose. Not a plan, but a purpose. My purpose, you ask? ok you didnt but Im gonna tell you anyway...I want to share my story of life after gastric bypass. I want to put it out there so that someone else who has had/isplanningtohave WLS (weightloss surgery) can relate, or anyone who has a loved one or friend who had/isplanningtohave WLS can get a glimpse as to what it is really like to live with a "pouch" instead of a stomach. So that is my purpose. Hang on folks it could be a bumpy ride:) currently drinking: hot green tea currently listening to: pink-don't let me get me