Okay, stuff's starting to happen. Today I had a stuck moment! And it wasn't nice at ALL. I was eating a small piece of leftover lasagne, with a small glass of milk, chewing slowly and carefully but obviously didn't leave enough time between the first swallow, drink and the second swallow.
Oh what a feeling! (As they say). It felt like it was all sitting at the top of my oesophagus and wouldn't budge. I tried walking around, banged on my chest a few times tried another sip of milk - nothing. Horrible tightness that got tighter. Thought "I need to get rid of this" so purged in the bathroom & the drink came up - not like vomiting more like positing, like a baby does. Eventually it went down but I was too scared to eat anything else and I was stinging and sore for a few hours afterwards. NOT something I want to repeat!
That was 1pm. I've now tried dinner at 7.30pm and the first mouthful (very soft chicken, a tiny piece about 1 x 1 cm) stuck on the first bite! Sipped water and burped a bit and it went down. Ate another 3-4 teeny pieces at very long intervals of around 2 minutes each. And I'm hungry but scared to try more so will have a small protein drink.
Pretty scary and a good reminder about the way things are now.
I've also taken everyone's advice and stopped weighing myself. Next time I'm weighed it will be in Prof's rooms on the 15th.
Meanwhile, my torso, specifically the area across where the band of my bra sits, gets unbelievably itchy and feels sort of tight and stretched. Scratching doesn't help, it's not that sort of itch if that makes sense? The closest I can get to something similar was when I was pregnant and my skin was stretching. Weird.
And life goes on.
This time last week I was knocked out cold, in an operating theatre at The Avenue Hospital. Hard to believe it now.
I survived the first week and am very much looking forward to eating lumpier food this week and then real food next week!
The scales have only moved a microscopic amount but I've decided not to worry about that and stop weighing myself as the lack of progress from the scales was making me depressed, especially when I keep reading that others have lost 2, 3 even 4 kg in the first week. Have to keep in mind that everyone is different.
So today I took my bandages off. Yay! Hopefully the terrible itch will stop now.
Here's a pic of my post-op wounds for anyone reading who is thinking about having this done - for you others, you know what this looks like!
And here's today, bandages off, blood all cleaned off. Prof sure is a neat surgeon! I'm very pleased.
Probably the worst 'wound' has been my poor left hand. I told the anaesthetist that I have lousy veins and she tried really hard to get that needle into the back of my hand, to no avail. And this is how it looks one week later! Lovely shade of green...
So they had to go in via my wrist. Ouch!
I still feel a little odd and weird but mostly human now. I'm still a bit scared I will fail but overall I'm feeling quite positive.
I have my son's 18th coming up in May, a dear friend's 50th in South Australia at the end of May, my partner's birthday also in May (birthday month!) so I'll be super busy and hopefully I can just incorporate this new style of eating and food consciousness to my life without too much drama.
For breakfast today I had a NutriGrain protein drink and it was enough. Normally I'd never go near NutriGrain but I don't like Up'N'Go and these were on special at Coles! I'll go back to porridge or an egg for breakfast next week. If I can, that is. Who knows? Breakfast as such might be a thing of the past.
Life. Same but different with my lap band.
It's been 48 hours since I was banded. Yesterday wasn't too bad but I was hungry, which seemed odd. I kept eyeing off a banana and thinking "nope, can't have that". I thought I'd have the fabled "zero interest in food" but that's not the case.
Am I right that there's currently no fill in the band and that it's just sitting there for the moment? I mean, I'm not ravenous but I am hungry. I had some soups yesterday and several cups of tea but was really longing for something to eat.
And today I've woken up quite sore in the torso area. One of my wounds has been weeping a bit as I can see from under the bandage tape but the soreness is more internal. I tried sleeping a bit on my sides last night and it felt weird and sort of stretchy, like things were moving around so after a while I'd give up and go back to sleep on my back. This is probably why I'm sore I think.
So I've taken 2 Panadol, as is becoming my daily routine and hopefully throughout the day I'll feel better. I'm going to work today (I work from home on the computer so I can do this) and will take it in short bursts of maybe 30 mins at a time then get up and walk around a bit and see how I go. I really can't afford to take any more time off. The curse of self-employment.
My frame of mind today is more "WTF have I done to myself?" than anything and I'm really hoping this will pass. I got on my scales this morning and they showed several kgs more than when I was weight pre-band but I don't think ours are very good or correct. Still, it was a bit depressing.
Hopefully when I'm not so sore my usual cheerful mood will return. Watch this space.
This time next week I will be in The Avenue Hospital, nervous and anxious but hopefully also a bit excited.
I still can't quite believe I'm doing this, yet I've paid unfeasibly large amounts of money out and am 100% booked in.
Over the last few weeks I've swung between "WTF am I doing???" to contemplating the blessed relief of not being able to just stuff whatever into my face, regardless of whether I'm hungry or not and also the relief of not being able to plough through a too-large portion of whatever meal is on offer.
I am still of the mindset that this is a seriously hard-core approach to weight loss and why, since I'm so incredibly disciplined in every other aspect of my life, am I choosing this radical approach when others seem to be able to do it without resorting to surgery - and I still don't honestly know the answer to that. Branching off from that thought I worry that somehow subconsciously I may think that this is an 'easier' way to lose weight? But surely undergoing actual surgery and having a foreign object inserted into my body can't ever be classified as 'easy'? Good grief, I don't even know what my own thought processes are!
I'm avidly reading the March bandits thread - eating up the entries of those banded recently (if you'll pardon the pun) and how they're going and I get quite inspired. Then I lie in bed and think - really think - about what I'm doing and I become terrified.
I know I'm not the only one to go through these thoughts and feelings, which is why I'm incredibly grateful for this forum, but it's still just me inside my head.
I think what I want is for life to get back to normal with the only difference being that I can no longer eat all the crap I used to and that I have to be active, mindful and aware of what I put in my mouth and to do some exercise. Other than that, nothing changes except my clothes size.
I don't want the band to dominate my life. I don't want to have a diet mentality for ever. I want to eat normally (albeit with the band) like others seem to.
I will always have a deep love for sweet things and particularly for bread, I know that. But I think I'm willing to trade them for permanent weight loss and a normal size for my little frame and height.
Part of me wants to run away. Ring the hospital and the Prof's rooms and cancel. But I think I know that I will go ahead and that if I didn't, I'd regret it forever.
As the lotto ads say, you'll never know if you don't have a go. And I want to play to win. But in order to do that, I have to agree to play.
So it's game on.
I just rang DHS Early Release of Superannuation section and was told that I was approved yesterday and my paperwork for the super fund should arrive within the next week.
This really is happening. I am really doing this. This is a LOT of money so I must really want this, right?
I don't want to overthink it (I tend to do that) - I just want it done and start to lose weight and get back to a normal size for my little height and not stress too much about how I did it.
I don't want to think about what people will say when they see me eating tiny amounts or whether I will stick to my decision to not tell anyone about it or just blurt it out. I don't want to think about having to justify taking such a hard-core approach to something a friend of mine did all by herself on the DASH diet (she wasn't that big to start with but she lost 15 kg by herself whilst working and caring for her adult handicapped son - I takes me hat off to her, awesome woman that she is, but I digress).
I texted my partner to tell him I'd been approved. His response was "Cool. I think?" - which shows that he's a little hmmm about it too although I know he's supportive and wants me to be happy and to lose the weight.
So. Mustn't overthink it. I'm overthinking it. I wish I could be done tomorrow.
The whole lap-band thing is obviously starting to seep into my subconscious but as is the way of dreams, it's all mixed up with other stuff.
Last night I dreamed that Clive Palmer had undergone lap band surgery and lost an incredible amount of weight and looked fantastic! In the dream, everyone was shocked by how good looking he was. This was pretty awful on several levels
I follow politics very closely and had only watched Clive's National Press Club address the other day so I suppose it isn't a surprise he cropped up in a dream linked with lap-band surgery, but you'd think if my subconscious was going to throw in a politician, it would have been Joe Hockey!
In any event, it seems very evident that my brain is processing this thing really hard. I am feeling impatient, even though I only posted off my stuff to DHS yesterday. Once it's all approved, I am actually hoping to get an earlier surgery date if possible just so I can get on with it as soon as possible.
I am accessing my superannuation to have my surgery done.
I have hardly any superannuation due to losing most of it to my ex-husband over the years (it was much easier to access back then and I had to bail him out of bad business deals several times, but I digress).
I won't bore you with the details but the bottom line is that I have bugger all in super - less than $23K - and while I'd dearly love to put that on our mortgage, the system is such that we are treated like children with our own money and I can't touch it. Except for a "medical emergency", so I'm going to use it for something important - me!
I am of the firm belief that if you are of a certain age (50 or over) and have less than $25K in superannuation, you should be able to access it easily to put on your mortgage or pay off debts. Let's face it, no one that age is going to accumulate too much more in super so why have it just sit there? It's money you've earned and you should be able to make it work for you.
Anyway, when I rang my fund this morning to get some details, the guy then mentioned that any amount withdrawn will be taxed at 20% - a rate imposed by the government apparently.
The same government who won't let me access a small amount to put on my mortgage - money that I've already paid tax on - and they want more?
I'm incensed! Furious! Incandescent with rage!
And of course, what do I want to do? I want to eat! I want a whole packet of Tim Tams and a McDonald's Quarter Pounder Meal. Probably in that order. I want to indulge in angry, ranty eating, totally emotional, and I know full well that's just not rational.
Maybe venting it out here will help a bit and I will try not to anger eat.
It is what it is. I have no other means of funding this surgery. So I have to suck this up. But DAMN I'm absolutely furious about it.
Sorry for the cliched title. I loathe the word journey, hijacked as its become, but to be honest, I can't actually think of what else this is.
A journey, an exploration, a study in self - it's many things - it's also a long overdue admission that I - Ms Very High Self-Esteem - am now so overweight that it's actually affecting my health. I can't be in denial any more, something needs to be done.
I had lunch two weeks ago with my son's best mate's mum. I hadn't seen her for a while and she looked fantastic. I knew that in the past she had used Duromine to lose about 10-12 kg and thought she must have been on that but she said "didn't I tell you? I got a lap-band done in November. Best thing I ever did!". She has lost 11 kg (even over Christmas! I was very impressed) and reckoned it was so easy and why she didn't do it years ago she'll never know.
I was fascinated. I listened hard to everything she told me and went home thinking "I think I need this".
I am lucky to have a very supportive partner who loves me regardless of what I look like but all the same, I know he is very pleased that I've decided to do this.
I made an appointment to see Prof. Paul O'Brien on 18 February but was excited to get a call saying there was an earlier appointment, so I went yesterday, 11 February. I was horrified to see what my weight was - 90 kg - BMI 35.6. I even find it hard to type that terrible number, but I knew it was time to face it. I am only 5'1" - 5'2" if I'm really lucky and 90 kg is appalling for my height. I had a hard enough time last year facing turning 50, then acknowledging I was actually going through menopause, now this. All these unfaceable things must now be squarely faced.
Prof. O'Brien told me that my ideal weight is 63 kg (is it a sign? I was born in 1963...*cue spooky music*) and that I have 27 kg of excess weight but should aim to lose 18 kg to get to 72 kg. I responded "I look awesome at 70 kg". Like I said, I have a very healthy self-esteem
So I got given all the paperwork and spent most of last night completing it - I absolutely couldn't complete the 40 page questionnaire in one hit so I did half last night and the rest this morning. I've had my GP sign the forms for the super fund, and tomorrow I'll post it all off.
My surgery is scheduled for 24 March 2014 unless the super fund comes through quickly and there is an earlier spot, which I will take.
I'm nervous and excited. I'm worried I will fail. I'm curious if I will succeed and if that success will be fast or slow. I fret that I'm a boredom eater and often eat when I'm not hungry. I wonder if I will still have the urge to buy a packet of biscuits or a block of chocolate and hide it in my office drawer to nibble on during the day. I am worried how I will cook for my partner and son when I don't feel hungry. In short, I have NFI what is ahead of me!
If I'm brutally honest (and why shouldn't I be here? No one knows who I am, there are no expectations, I can truly be myself), I've always been a bit of a "happens to other people" type. But this time it's happening to me and I have to face it.
I am fat. Horribly so for my height. I am sick of shopping in the fat chick's section. I am sick of not wearing sleeveless things. I'm sick of trying on bigger and bigger sizes to find something that fits. I've always had big boobs, but even I'm shocked at the sheer scale of the bras I'm wearing now. You could parachute safely to earth from a plane with one of them! I'm sick of seeing people I haven't seen for ages say "wow, you look really well" - when we all know that "well" is a weasel word for fat. Sometimes I even supply them with the word they can't bring themselves to say. I am nothing if not blunt.
The Prof's letter to the superannuation fund, by necessity, has to be blunt, but man, it was really tough seeing the words "quite massive obesity" so baldly spelled out on the page.
Well you know what? I never want those words used in relation to me again.
So lap-band surgery it is. I really hope I can get an earlier appointment to have it done, just to get it over with so I can start this new...thing I don't want to call a journey. I know! A project. That's what it is - a project.
LillyPilly's Fat Project.
And it starts now. This would be great!
I want to use this blog to articulate my thoughts as well as to share what's actually happening to me throughout The Project. I don't mind if no one reads this, it's mainly for me anyway, and I thank the Admins of the forum for providing a safe space to do this.
Let us begin.