Friday, December 14, 2012

When horrible things happen

In September a man abducted a child from my kids' school.  She got away and wasn't hurt.  He was eventually caught.  But when something that will "never happen to you" happens to you, your perspective changes.  Now every unfamiliar face is a potential suspect.

Today in Connecticut a man killed elementary aged children and adults.  Before the abduction at my children's school these events would, of course, upset me, but there was also a sense of being removed from the situation.  However, after the abduction these events hit closer to home.

I am having a hard time compartmentalizing these events.  I see the terrified looks on the children's faces and can picture my own children's faces with the same look.  I'm trying to detach myself, but can't.  Then I wonder if I really should.  I should be upset by this. I should be sitting here at my desk crying.  Something like this should not be shrugged off. We shouldn't just thank our powers that be that it wasn't our children.  But I don't know what else to do.

It's overwhelming, these emotions.  I don't want to feel them, but I do.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

And the scale keeps marching down!

This is amazing.  I'm losing weight almost daily.  I step on the scale 3-4 times a week and each time I'm down by a pound or more.  Today I hit the 50 pound lost mark.  This is in only 3 months, since starting the program in August.

If anyone out there is thinking of weight loss surgery I urge you to check it out.  It's not for everyone, but knowledge is power.  The more you know about your options the more likely you are to be successful in your weight loss.

Yes, my start to on this journey was somewhat rocky.  I never regretted having the surgery done, but I sure didn't enjoy a couple of the paths I went down.  I still mourn the loss of food. I still wish I could eat a huge juicy hamburger with cheese and bacon and fries.  But I am extremely glad I can't.

This is what's so great about this surgery.  If I slip up and give in to that juicy hamburger I can only eat about 4 bites.  It is physically impossible to eat much more than that.  On diets if you slip up you'll end up eating the whole burger and feeling guilty.  I don't have to feel guilty over 4 bites.

But please don't assume I'm eating 4 bites of hamburger every day.  That's not healthy and I'm not only training myself to eat less, but to eat healthy as well.  I need to establish healthy eating habits now, for if I don't I'll start to gain weight back after I hit my goal.

I know I'm not done with the bumps in my journey.  In fact, there will be much more after I hit my goal weight and need to maintain.  But I am so happy with the choice I made.  I'm glad I took this step in getting myself healthy. I did it for myself and my kids.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Grieving The Loss of Food

Not eating real food is depressing. My family is eating and I sit here with my stupid broth. Again. I just want one bite of the hamburgers they’re having tonight. One bite of the egg sandwich they had this morning.

I know I’ll be able to in a while. But knowing that doesn’t really help me right now. I find myself on the verge of tears sometimes.  I’m grieving the loss of food. At times it makes me want to find a time machine and turn back time and not have the surgery.  If I was actually faced with that choices, chances are I wouldn’t take it.  But right NOW I might.

I knew the journey would have it’s up hills and down hills. I just had no idea how they would affect me. 

I look back on my last post about being in pain.  I’m not anymore.  I still get weird twinges when I eat and drink, but nothing like before.  So, of course, I’ll someday look back on this post and realize I was soon able to eat real food again.  It’s just hard to get out of the here and now.

Friday, October 19, 2012

This Too Shall Pass

This is some serious pain.  When you hurt a leg or an arm it really hurts, but there’s a difference to pain inside your body.  That’s where all the important stuff is.  If you hurt your arm or leg bad enough it can be cut off and you can still go on to live a productive life.  Something goes that wrong inside you and there’s nothing you can do.  Am I saying there’s something that wrong with me? No. But it’s a lot scarier than limb pain.

I know this too shall pass.  I know it gets better. I know my friends in my support groups all say with in a few days they were ready to get right back to doing what they did before.  But the other part of my brain can’t wrap it’s head around that.  It can’t get past the pain.  It can’t see that tomorrow, the next day or even later today I’ll feel better.  It’s stuck here and I don’t like it.

I’m posting this because the logical part of my brain knows I’ll look back and read this later and laugh at myself for being so dramatic.  But I also don’t want to forget what this feels like so when someone else goes through this I can honestly say I know exactly how they’re feeling.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

The inner bitch needs to be slapped

Tomorrow is the day. I’m to report to the hospital at 9:30. Probably means my actual surgery will be closer to noon.  I’m trying very hard not to think about it because when I do I freak out a bit. 

I have this inner voice that can’t possibly believe I can ever be thin.  She likes to remind me about all my failed attempts to lose weight in the past. She likes to tell me to not get my hopes up because I might lose weight, but before I know it I’ll gain back all the weight and then some, just like before.

That bitch needs to shut her fucking mouth. Because you know what? I WILL be successful this time! I am being given a tool that will make this attempt successful. Unlike other diets where I’ll eat good for a couple days, then fall off the wagon and say “screw it! I just can’t do this”, I will not be able to not eat well.  I will be physically incapable of gorging myself.  There is no way to NOT lose weight.  And once I get to my goal weight I will have been trained to eat well. There’s no going back. The fat me will not exist anymore.

So, where ever you are tomorrow around noon pacific, send a little thought out for me. And a little bitch slap to that inner voice.

Monday, October 1, 2012

My Weight Loss Journey

I’m about to embark on a weight loss journey.  And I’m starting to get scared.

I’ve been over weight my entire life.  I’ve been able to lose weight here and there, but I always gain it back – and then some.  So I’ve made the decision to get weight loss surgery (WLS).  This decision was not made in haste.  I’ve sat on the idea for about a year.  A couple months ago I decided to take the plunge and get the ball rolling.

Many insurance companies these days are covering WLS.  They’re figuring out it’s cheaper for them to pay for this surgery than to pay for the myriad of complications that can arise from being obese.  It’s called Preventive Medicine and I wish more organizations would figure it out.

There are three major surgeries that my insurance offers: Gastric Bypass (also called Roux-en-Y), Gastric Band (a common one is Lap Band) or Gastric Sleeve.  A couple months ago I went to an informative meeting thinking I like the Gastric Band idea the most.  At the time it seemed the least invasive.  There’s no cutting, not including the laparoscopic incisions,  and it’s adjustable.  Even removable.

After the meeting, however, I left knowing that, with out a doubt, I would want the Sleeve.  Here is a quick description of the different surgeries:
1.      Gastric Bypass – the surgeon uses staples to divide the stomach into a small upper section and a larger bottom section. The top section of the stomach (called the pouch) is where the food you eat will go. The pouch is about the size of a walnut. It holds only about 1 ounce of food.  Then the surgeon will connect a small part of the small intestine (the jejunum) to a small hole in the pouch. The food you eat will now travel from the pouch into this new opening into the small intestine. Because of this, your body will absorb fewer calories.  (

2.      Gastric Band – A synthetic band is placed around the upper portion of the stomach. It works by creating a small "pouch" at the top of the stomach just below the esophagus, thus dramatically reducing the amount of food that can be eaten. There is then a port attached to muscles. Saline solution is pumped into the port to make the band constrict. (

3.      Gastric Sleeve - The stomach is restricted by stapling and dividing it vertically and removing more than 85% of it. The stomach that remains is a narrow tube or sleeve, which connects to the intestines. This restricts the amount of food the stomach can hold, as well as removing the portion of the stomach that generates Ghrelin, the hormone that causes hunger. (

I chose to go with what I felt was the least invasive.  You may think the Band sounds the least invasive, but I disagree.  The Bypass rearranges organs.  That’s the most invasive.  The Band leaves a foreign object in your body.  The Sleeve, although it has the largest internal cut, leaves everything else intact and does not leave a foreign object to cause possible future problems.

Choosing to have WLS is not as easy as one day waking up and scheduling it.  There are classes to take and new ways of eating to be taught.  There are lab tests and psych visits.  They want to make sure the person they’re giving the surgery to will survive it.  It may be preventive medicine, but it’s still money management.

You also have to lose weight before getting the surgery to help you lose weight. They want to make sure you’re willing to put in the effort needed to be successful.  Yes, once you have the surgery you won’t be able to eat as much, but you can stretch that “pouch” and, over time, make it as big as your stomach was before. 

So, I’m eating better. I think I’ve lost weight, but I’m too scared to step on the scale to look.  I’ll know at my pre op appointment if I made the grade.  If all goes as planned, I will be having surgery on October 17th.  Every person I’ve talked to said it was the best decision they ever made.  I hope I’ll be able to say that soon, too, but for now I’m starting to freak out.

I plan on keeping track of my journey right here.  I hope you’ll follow along. I will need all the help and encouragement I can get.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Ice Cream For Breakfast

Recently a friend passed away. I didn't know him, I didn't know anyone he knew, not really. I had never met him or any of his friends. I had never spoken to him, directly or indirectly. But I considered him a friend. Why? Because he, his wife and family, and those who really knew him were so incredibly amazing that they all made me feel I knew him.

Bruce Rosenberg, husband to Julie, father to Ella and Lulu, was an amazing man. When he was diagnosed with cancer last year he quickly realized how short life could be. So what is the most important thing you can do when you realize this? You do things that you would never do otherwise because you just don't. No one eats ice cream for breakfast! That's a dessert for after dinner, sometimes lunch. It's a special afternoons snack. It's NOT breakfast. Bruce asked us why not?? Ice cream is good! Why not start your day with eating something as tasty as ice cream? Because you only live once, and the life you live is short.

So I hope you all join me for Ice Cream for Breakfast Day, March 21st. Come join our group on Facebook: Ice Cream for Breakfast Day.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Backseat Parenting

Backseat Parenting.  You know how irritating backseat drivers are? "This is a 30 mph zone". "You should go around this guy". "I generally go THAT way".

Backseat parenting is the same idea.  You have one parent dealing with the situation.  That parent is trying to get the kids dressed or to do their homework or to eat their breakfast with out killing each other.  The backseat parent is making comments from the couch... where they can't even see what's going on.

The backseat parent is saying "sit down and eat your breakfast" about 3 minutes after you said "sit down and eat your breakfast" and they did.  The backseat parent says "brush your teeth" 30 seconds after your child comes up to you to have you smell his minty breath.

I get it. Sometimes one parent is really tired and just needs to veg on the couch.  And that's fine. I've been that parent. A few times.  But when you choose to be that parent, then stay the hell out of the parenting.  You're making situations worse and frustrating the other parent who is probably already frustrated enough.

Instead, listen to what your partner is saying. When your partner is getting frustrated, then maybe it's time to get off the couch, computer, book, etc.  Make sure you're not repeating what's already been repeated 100 times.  Make sure you're not stepping in and stepping on toes.  Assess the situation. Don't take over.

I've been the backseat parent.  But lately I've been the driver and I'm about to smack that parent in the back upside his head.  So now I know what it's like.  Let's everyone take a little lesson from this, hmm?