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18 Months Post Op

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

I cannot believe it's really been that long since I had my gastric bypass. I really need to post new photos as I haven't taken any or posted new ones since July of last year. I think I need them to get myself motivated and going once again.

Saw my surgeon and on his scale my weight was up 5 lbs since July. He was not amused; neither am I! I have honestly been having a LOT of issues with food. I have been stress eating and that means eating whatever I can get my hands on. Unfortunately, at work that means things like chips, cookies, chocolate (I don't even like chocolate, really), etc. I tried sticking gum in my mouth, it just makes me want to eat more. I am eating all day long and it has to stop. I need better coping skills, especially at work. This is why I need a need a new therapist. The one I have now is not addressing any of the food issues and that's why I started going to therapy in the first place. The nurse gave me a card for a doctor that they send people to for psych clearance prior to surgery. I will call today to find out if my insurance will pay for him. If so, I'm going to switch and see where it leads. This doctor is experienced in treating people pre and post op for bariatric issues.

As for the lump in my leg, the surgeon was surprised by the ortho doctor's assessment. He still totally disagrees and says it is a cyst that needs to be traced to the joint but he is not going to fight the ortho doc on it. He said there is no reason that it HAS to come out. I can watch it. If it seems to be getting larger, becames tender or painful, or there is any issue with it, I will let him know and he will go back in and remove it again. No guarantees that it will not continue to come back so ... I am opting to leave it in right now. It is not affecting my quality of life. He feels there is no danger of it becoming cancerous. It does not hurt and is barely noticeable most of the time. I'm okay with leaving it alone for now.

As for the tummy surgery, he suggested I sock away $500 a month to pay for it next year. His fee is $3500 and the hospital would be about $300 he claims. Yeah, right! He may have that kind of extra money, being a doctor and all, but I certainly don't. I'm going to have to try to get my PCP to help me prove it is medically necessary. That's the only way insurance will pick it up. I think this will be a hard battle to win. I don't have rashes, at least not any that are that bad. I do have back pain and the inability to stand up straight because of the stomach weight causing me to lean forward. It flops around and is really annoying, especially when I'm exercising and really irritating in my water aerobics class. Seriously, I need Dr. Phil, Oprah, or even Maury to become my best friend and pay for the surgery! Guess I'd better start looking for a really good girdle and learn how to roll and tuck. *sigh*

Went to my exercise class last night. It was good. My muscles ache a little bit. I like that. It means I worked hard. Water aerobics tonight. It's raining outside so no walk outside tonight. I'm not committed enough to walk in the rain. One day maybe I will buy rain gear so I can and will but not today. I am going to start walking as soon as I get home from work every night. The rain and gloom pretty much matches my mood right now.

That's about it for me. I try to focus on how far I've come and tell myself I will get where I am going. Like all things I want, I want it now! I have done well. I need to re-focus and get my head back where it belongs. My surgeon told me he knows I will be a complete success story keeping the weight off because one day I will be ticked at myself and just get it done! He's pretty much right on the money. That's how I started this whole process. I'm getting close to being there once again and maybe anger at myself is what I need to push me forward. No looking back. Get through each day without eating all day and eating the things I don't need and I'll be okay.

God bless you all. I read here at SP and it helps me to stay encouraged and does motivate me. Without all my friends here, I would be hard pressed to keep going.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ARPLUMLEE 3/25/2010 10:55AM

    You inspire me! Keep on going!

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RAINBOWMF 3/14/2010 9:51AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon first time I have read your blogs.
You have the most wonderful spirit, I send you blessings from my heart. I do hope you can find a way to have the surgery you want. Darn insurance companies.

All My Best to you,Dear Lady.


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BARBARAROCKSIT 3/12/2010 10:21PM

    Wow, Karon you've had quite a successful adventure so far!

My suggestion for work until you find the professional you like to talk to would be .. to journal or write, or get your feelings out with a mini recorder on your phone or computer, etc. - something non food related. If that's not doable, then taking healthy snacks might help lesson that anxiety of doing the wrong thing.

You have come soo far with fabulous results! I don't even know you and I'm proud of you! You rock!

Thanks for sharing your story.


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BMVMOM 3/12/2010 3:10PM

    Way to go on your journey to a healthier you. You can do this.
Great Job!

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SOCKITTOME 3/12/2010 11:08AM

    Karon, you have done a wonderful job on your journey so far, and I have no doubt you will go as far as you want to go. It's amazing to me that you've been on a plateau for so long and not given up -- that speaks loads of your character and staying with something until it's done. Finding new behaviors to cope with stress (other than eating) is hard, and I can totally relate to it. Hopefully the new therapist is covered by insurance and will be helpful to you. Sometimes another set of eyes can see what we can't. You will beat it, though, because that's what you do!

I also hope you and your docs can find a way to get the tummy surgery covered. My insurance wouldn't cover removing the "apron" back when I lost all that weight in 2001. In 2002 I ended up needing an incisional hernia repair (complications from the cancer surgery 2 years before), and the surgery ended up having to remove the "apron" so they could close the new incision. It wasn't a pretty job (not plastic-surgery quality) but that didn't matter to me -- it was gone and it was amazing (the skin is again a little saggy there since I gained the weight back, but nothing like it was originally). I hope the docs will find a way to help you get yours done, too. You'll be amazed at the difference! (It just hit me -- they cover reduction mammoplasties for women who have back/shoulder problems related to big boobs -- why not use similar reasoning for the "apron" since it's bothering your back as well? Might be another angle to pursue anyway.)

Hang in there, Karon. I don't think a lot of people could survive the stress you're under and still manage to lose all the weight you've lost. You are a true inspiration!

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SHANTODD420 3/10/2010 10:03AM

    Way to go on your journey Karon keep up the hardwork and dedication. You will win that food battle just keep plugging away at it.


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February Update

Thursday, February 18, 2010

I am still going up and down on the blasted scale. I have been doing this since July. It's frustrating. Talk at my support group meeting last night about this issue by many and the consensus is that now, 18 months post op, it is more a mind game than anything. I have to make a more conscious effort to stay away from the old habits of eating to comfort myself and eating the things that piled on the pounds in the first place. Healthy foods, like fresh fruit (which I love) is just so expensive. Then again, I can get my beloved raspberries or a box of 100 calorie snacks for the same price. Hmmmm ... but the snacks last days. I eat all the raspberries in one sitting. LOL It IS about choices, no?

I am staying within calorie range. I am burning calories daily so that I end up the day actually eating about 1000 net calories. I feel like I'm doing this all wrong now. I will talk with the nutritionist about this next month when I go for my 18 month post op visit with my surgeon. I sometimes wonder if I am not taking in enough calories. Then again, maybe I eat too many carbs. It doesn't seem like I am but ... something isn't working for me. I hope the NUT can get to the bottom of it. I would really like to lose another 40 lbs before my body decides is it done. OR has it already already done that seeing as how I have not lost anything really in six months? I dunno.

I am seriously considering doing this 'walk to run' program that runs for ten weeks starting in April. It meets on Saturday mornings. The first week you walk four mins and run for two (or as much of the two as you can). You build on that as you go, and by the end of ten weeks, you are supposed to be able to run for thirty mins. I dunno. Maybe I'd like running if I am not on a treadmill. I absoluetly HATE running on the treadmill. I'm always afraid I'll trip and fall. Is it worth a shot? What do you think? I still don't think I'll be able to do it. I am my own worst enemy.

So that is what is going on with me right now. Examining a lot of issues and learning I kind of sort of like the person I am becoming. I am also learning that I have to take care of me and everyone else is on their own.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

GEORGIA_KAY 2/25/2010 8:38PM

    Karon, I know what you mean about the foodstuff we need bing so expensive. it was just so much easier when we were eating all those cheap macaroni and cheese, spaghetti, mashed potato, bread, and other high carb dishes that were so inexpensive to make...and yummy to eat. *sigh* but---that's what got us fat as heck in the first place, right?

Just hang in there kiddo, that fat is being stubborn, but i know you'll get it all off. You are a vibrant, amazing woman and not about to let this get you down!

many hugs---Georgia

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SHANTODD420 2/18/2010 2:35PM

    Hey Karon,
Good luck getting things figured out. I know how you feel the scale goes up and down for me as well. I hope they can figure it out and get you going again. Try the walk and run you might find you like doing it.


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NENATO2 2/18/2010 8:36AM

    I think you should try the walk and run thing. It sounds like you may need to change your exercising habits. Somedays do one thing, other days do something else. Just do something! Somedays I love to put my headset on with my favorite tunes and just move (I use a lot of the Leslie Sansone moves) and put my own into it. It is so much fun! Today, I'm using some of my tunes to get warmed up, then switch to the rest of a Walk at Home dvd. It's suppose to get warmer today, so I'm going to try for a 20 minute walk outside.

Don't give up! Switch it around. I have also found that fast food costs a whole lot more than the healthy food. Don't forget the protein! It carries you farther than those 100 calorie snacks!

I hate to see you be discouraged.

Best to you.

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Five Years Later

Sunday, January 03, 2010

I started my initial weight loss journey five years ago this month. I decided that being super morbidly obese was no longer acceptable. I made the decision that carrying around 530 lbs. was no longer for me. I was tired of being tired. I was over having to ask someone to put my socks and shoes on my feet and to then tie my shoes. I was sick of having to sit down to shower, cook, and do dishes. I was ashamed of having to send my family in to do the shopping because I could no longer make it through even the smallest of grocery stores. I was done.

I am proud to say four years later I am now down to 271 pounds as of this morning. That is a total of 259 lbs gone that I know I am not going to gain back. It's been a slow process. I lost over 100 lbs and maintained that for two years. Then I lost the other 150 lbs. I've maintained that loss for six months now. I am ready to lose another 40 lbs to be near where I want to be before skin removal surgery of just my stomach. I'd like to be there by March but that seems unrealistic to me now.

Yes, I had a gastric bypass surgery to get the last 150 lbs off but it has still been work. I still have to count calories, track protein, watch my carbs, and move my body. It has been about more than just losing the pounds. I have had to change my lifestyle and it has not been an easy process. I do know that I am doing it every day and I will continue to do so. I am not going to regain the pounds I have shed and I will make it to where I am comfortable being. Not a number set by a doctor, health insurance company, surgeon, or someone else, but a weight and size I am comfortable being. My body fat is decreasing though the scales are not moving much. I am not discouraged. That is what needs to happen at some point. I want the fat to change to muscle. It's all good.

I am back at water aerobics class two nights week. I go to cardio circuit training one night a week for an hour. I also do aerobics and strength training for an hour that same night. On nights I have no scheduled fitness classes, I am going to the fitness center at my apartment complex. I am walking on the treadmill, doing a weight workout, and using the elliptical. I have a fitness ball and bands at home I use. I am considering getting myself some hand weights (eight pounds because the five pounds at the fitness center really aren't challenging me anymore and I'm not ready to move up to ten). It's all coming together.

Just wanted to do a little update. I didn't realize it had been so long since last I posted here. Take care and happy new year to all. God bless and may you find joy, peace, happiness, and prosperity in this new year!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SYNCHRODAD 1/29/2010 8:22PM

    You are so awesome, and thoughtful. You were carrying around a couple of normal small people or three hobbits when you started. Now they are off your back and every where else. Congrats on a spectacular journey.

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DOMMIEPA 1/27/2010 10:18AM

    You are always my inspiration Karon.

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KIMMYCRIS 1/25/2010 1:48PM

    You are an amazing lady! Thank you for sharing your story. May you have many blessings as you continue your journey!

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LARAINE 1/24/2010 3:32PM

    You truly are an inspiration I'm glad to be your friend

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SOCKITTOME 1/21/2010 12:44AM

    Karon, you are totally awesome! As I read the things you're doing, it hit me that you could do absolutely none of this even a couple of years ago. Heck, I can't even keep up with you yet! You have come so far, and I salute you!


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FITMARY 1/17/2010 6:03PM

    Amazing story! Congratulations! You deserve an award! emoticon

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L8BLUMER 1/13/2010 10:51AM

    You truly are an inspiration. I am glad to see that you are doing so well. You look fantastic.

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INNERPUPPIE 1/11/2010 12:08PM

    Who cares how it came of the important part is that it is off and it is gone and you are healthier for it. Post more often - there are so many folks that need to read about you and your story.

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FERRET-EYES 1/5/2010 6:54PM

    remember? You encouraged someone on the boards who 'could not exercise'.
You said that you stepped in place, while holding on to the kitchen counter.
i will never forget that. it was the beginning of your journey to health.
i am SO proud of you, happy for you, and for all of us here who got the chance to get to know you.
Thank you. Hugs. Ferret.

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KITT52 1/3/2010 1:45PM

    Great job are doing it...
we have been here a few years. It will be 4 for me come May......I reached my goal weight about a month ago and have not challenged myself to loose 1 pound each month in the New year.....hoping to be in the 130's come Christmas.....

You have been a great motivator to me and I'm happy that your happy with your self and your life......



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BOOMERGIRL5 1/3/2010 9:56AM

    Congratulations !!!!!!!!

You truly inspire me


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Walking, Reflections, and Plans

Monday, November 23, 2009

I think I mentioned before that I now have an iPod touch and I purchased a Nike+ sensor that acts as a pedometer. I LOVE it! Went for my first walk on Saturday, using this, and walked for an hour. During that time I walked two and a half miles and burned 478 calories according to the iPod. I actually lost track of how many laps I did on the track at the park!

While walking, I reflected how just after surgery I couldn't even make it all the way around once. I had to actually cut through to make it back to the car! After that, the most laps I had accomplished was three and then I'd be too tired to continue. This time, I just listened to my music, walked, breathed, and went with it. I had no plan as to how long, how many laps, how far ... I just decided to listen to my body and go with it. And that's what I did. Sunday my knees were stiff and my upper inside thigh as well as my lower mid calf were sore but it was so worth it. I took Sunday off and will walk again tonight. Tomorrow, I will go to my two hour exercise class. Wednesday will be spent in the car ...

I have quite a week coming up. Work today through Wednesday. The girls and evening staff are hosting Thanksgiving dinner on Tuesday night. Hopefully, most of the girls will leave to visit their families on Wednesday and then I am off to travel southward to visit my own family. I will be at my little sister's for Thanksgiving Day. Friday we will shop until Jackie drops! Saturday I go to Cincinnatti with my older sister to the flea markets. Sunday we will make the trek back home so I can be at work Monday. Though you would think four days off will feel like a vacation, I know it will go by all too quickly. Time is like that and just slips away. I am going to make the most of it and have fun. I will also squeeze in a visit with the oldest daughter and her children and my brother so all the family will be covered.

I am thankful for life, for having a clear head to make the decision to have surgery, for my wonderful family, and all of my beautiful friends. Life is indeed good and very much worth living! Thank you Lord.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SYNCHRODAD 11/24/2009 12:36AM

    As I was reading your blog, I saw the 2 and 1/2 miles and without going further I thought, "Wow, what a long ways she's come and how impossible that sounded in the beginning of your journey. Wow, congrats, enjoy Thanksgiving and drop a half pound while so many people gain.

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KITT52 11/23/2009 10:08AM

    Have a happy and healthy Thanksgiving,
Your right live is wonderful when you can get out and enjoy it.

Have a safe trip


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NENATO2 11/23/2009 9:23AM

    Well, I think we need an updated pic! I think you are doing great!

Thanks for sharing...

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The power

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

I am trudging onward and will not let others have the power to keep me from achieving my goal. I tell my girls at work all the time not to give away their power. They are always blaming someone for their mistakes, faults, short comings ... I tell them to stand up and take responsibility for their actions. I tell them blaming others is giving them way too much power over them. They are letting others control how their life turns out and they need to take that power back. So ... I am working on taking back all of my own power from the many I have given it away to. I know that I can do this!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SHANTODD420 11/19/2009 6:18PM

    Hey Karon,
You look so good. Keep up the hardwork and dedication. Keep going.


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GREYHOUNDER 11/18/2009 8:15PM

    Karon, You are one amazing women. You are so strong, even if you don't feel that way. One day at a time, one step at a time.

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NENATO2 11/18/2009 12:59PM

    Been missing you...I had to get back my Power last week due to me slipping up for a few weeks. Now all is good and I feel great!

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SOCKITTOME 11/18/2009 11:05AM

    Great wisdom in this post, Karon! Too many of us are content to be victims through blame ("I can't do this because..."), rather than be victors through self-accountability (e.g., "I messed up and this is what I'll do differently next time"). You have overcome much in your journey, and I have no doubt you will overcome the obstacles in your way today. And what a wonderful example you give your girls -- they can learn by example from you, if they open their minds to hear the lessons you're teaching. God bless you in your work!

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KITT52 11/18/2009 8:40AM

    Very good advice Karon.....I know you can do it too....just keep trying..

it's worth it....

Have a healthy week.


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