Saturday, October 31, 2009

Happy Halloween!

I just wanted to tell you all, "Happy Halloween" (minus Ozians--is that the correct descriptor, Cara?--to them, have a great regular, average, ordinary, run-of-the-mill, garden variety, standard, normal day :) )!

As for me, I went out for dinner with the man--nothing terrible, don't worry. And then we went downtown and drove around by the water. We saw lots of costumed people hitting the clubs. Last night, we did a haunted tour of the Red Light district downtown. We went on a different haunted tour last year too (there are four different walks/rides that our historical society offers here), so I guess it's become our tradition--at least for the next two years unless they start offering more.

I had a good jog right at sunset today. I just listen to the local stations on my MP3, so I heard Thriller twice while jogging. :) The moon (full--as I'm sure you're all aware) and the sky looked spooky/cool for Halloween from here. And it was low 60's, absolutely fabulous weather for exercise as opposed to the normal 80's (and 90's just a few short weeks ago).

At any rate, I hope everyone in Band Land is having a blast this Halloween (or regular day ;) ) with as little temptation as possible.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Cara, Amy, Lacey, Yana, and Gen (still having computer issues :( )

Thank you all. I have wondered from time to time if it has something to do with the money--more fills equals more money? The doctor has stated that smaller and less frequent fills is a safety issue, but it is strange to me how others almost everywhere else in the world can go in from week to week if needed and not have an issue. In fact, I was told by Dr. Rumbaut's staff (he banded myself and Catherine) that there is no medical reason to inch it up to restriction and that I could fly there and have it done with the flouro (but a plane trip and hotel cost would be a little high--and I would have to answer to the local doc about why I am more filled than last time; he may even decide not to help me anymore--and as Gen said in an earlier post, it's nice having a local doc). At any rate, this is the first time that I have attempted to go in early, and I think my reasons were legit.

Cara: I had .25 put in mine last time.

Amy: I called your doctor after I talked to mine, but the lady was out that I was to speak with about the charge for fills. I am self pay, so I realy have to take that into consideration. I called several places before starting fills that quoted prices. My doctor's was the best price, and I didn't have to pay $900-1500 as a down payment amount for fills or as a consult fee (as a lot of other places charged). The bad thing is that I'm sure I will exceed at LEAST the $1000 mark when all is said and done. And I'm truly not satisfied. But it may be too late to chage since I've paid so much to get to this point. Also, doctors may not like the fact that I've gone through a doctor (actually two if you count my surgeon--though he's not from around here) to add what they might consider a 'problem patient' to their lists. We're in the South, and, let's face it, the 'good ole boy connection' is alive and well too. By the way, I did hear something negative about my doctor from a member of the staff of an obesity center that does not handle lapbands. She said anyone is good but my doctor, but she did not elaborate for professional reasons (though I would like to know why/if the reasons are credible). Unfortunately, this was soon after my first fill. :(

Lacey: I don't know the name of the lady. She wasn't vicious or anything, just resigned to not move forward or listen to the fact that I can eat a horse. I will admit that the 'band as a tool' comment irked me, but it is honestly probably her job to say that. I do know that Dr. Nye has been conservative from the start though. He doesn't ask me any questions really (like about calories consumed, how much I've eaten, etc.--in fact we hardly talk about weight loss at all) unless I've gained (then it's only a little). And I'm so danged timid in there; I've never press his decisions to give me small fills or no fills at all. He is a very conservative fill doctor generally as I understand. In fact, my first question I asked the nurse after I told her how much I'd eaten and about the wedding was questioning what he generally does in those types of situations. She hadn't yet pulled my chart at that point but said that he generally has the patient come in two months after his or her fill (I knew that from previous appointments but didn't tell her that because I wanted to be as nice as possible). I then asked if that meant that I could only keep my current appointment, and she said that the earliest he would see me would be in a month from my last appointment. The nurse said that this is his policy. I went ahead and made that appointment.

Yana: Hi. It's nice to meet you (I don't think we've met). :) I don't know about the nurse training, but I do know that his care is quite different from what I've read about everywhere else. I seriously haven't read of ANYONE going this slow unless the bandster was sensitive to fills and felt restriction early on as a bandster.

Gen: I agree that I could be close to my set point weight (I hope not since I would like to be well within the normal range, but I am a realist). But I would at least like to see if I am, and I don't think I'm getting a fair shot here. If I were eating less and still at this weight, that would be one thing. But I'm eating like a cow in a fattening pen. I'm fluctuating up since my last weight loss progression post (but I don't have the heart to chage the weight back on my post :( ). I've actually really been slacking about wedding planning. The thing that is stressing me out the most about it is this weight-loss-for-pictures thing. I also have a situation with very close family members (at the parent and grandparent levels, I'm sorry to say) who don't want to see one another because of a divorce (and are REALLY trying not to go); of course, since I've been hearing this about them not going to my wedding long before I was ever engaged, I've gotten to the point that it's not too disturbing--I can't control their actions even though I think they're being selfish. But thank you about the groom; I think he will be happy with how I look even if I'm already where I'll ultimately land. Even though wedding planning isn't too much of an anxiety factor yet (though I'm sure it will be later since I'm procrastinating), I am a bit stressed about some other things, which could be leading to more food intake. But I just can't seem to shake why I should still be able to eat this much no matter if I'm stressed. Does that make sense? Thanks for all that you wrote. You really put some time into that, and I appreciate it. :)

Called The Doc's Office For Another Fill...

As you know, I have been distressed about my weight stagnation (and even little gain) and called the doctor's office after reading your comments and a couple more bad days. I explained my situation (upcoming wedding, etc) including the fact that I ate 3000 calories worth of food yesterday (and they weren't sliders--who is able to do that after being banded? That is completely where I was before being banded, but I feel hungry all the time, have a few things going on in my life, etc. and though I know I shouldn't eat that much, if I don't have anything to stop me--willpower is getting VERY old after 10 months--what am I to do?). The receptionist told me that the absolute soonest that they would do a fill would be a month from my last one (three weeks away)--and even then they could not guarantee that I would get a fill. They said that if I have gained, he MIGHT do one because his policy is usually two months. So I am incentivized to NOT exercise then? I just can't do that. The receptionist even reminded that the band is a tool, which was annoying to hear after knowing that I have been working so hard myself (and it seems sometimes like it is all me) all these months. Again, I'm not eating a lot of sliders or junk, am not drinking empty calories since being banded, and am still exercising religiously, so how am I not trying to do my part here? Argh!!! It just makes me frustrated.

What am I eating: mainly chicken and fish. I ate eight fish fillets (good sized too) in a ROW yesterday. I had three chicken Lean Cuisine meals and one salisbury steak meal. I had a roasted chicken breast sub (foot long). I had cereal (just one bowl) and a protein bar for breakfast. I had several pieces of lunch meat (turkey) throughout the day to try to fill me up and some vegetables. I had about six regular-sized pickles (not spears) before bed. As you can see, a lot of that was protein. Shouldn't it be making me full if this thing is doing its job?

I just really want to get this weight off soon. Should it have taken 10 months to get to just a little over 30 pounds? Some people lose that (or more) in their first month out! There will be pictures before the wedding, and I need this gone for those too. I'm pretty bummed. :(

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Dear Gen, Amy, Angie, Cara, Liz, Mary, and Everyone Else:

I am having some issues posting comments on others' pages (or opening the comments to even read them) from my stinkin' computer here lately. But I have to get some things out there because there have been some great blog posts lately!

I first wanted to say congrats on all of your goals being met!!!! You are all incredible ladies and such great motivators.

Second, Amy, I have some of those little undies. They're incredible. And it must be a Pensacola thing, but I have done Taco Bell the last two days too. I am usually not a tacoholic, so what is up with that? Also, how long has it been since your last fill? Did they give you any flack for moving your appointment up?

My doctor only does my fills every two months (if he feels I need one), but I'm truly not near my sweet spot yet...after 10 months. I'm am eating like a walrus (I guess they eat a lot???). I got my first (very tiny) fill since July on Monday but have eaten lots of pasta (wheat, but still), meat, Taco Bell, hamburgers (with the bun), chicken nuggets (bad choice but don't do this usually), etc. since then. In fact, there really isn't much that my band won't tolerate, and I am always hungry. I don't get full really. I am eating over 2000 calories a day (MOST of the time these are non-slider foods; I don't eat chips or candy or ice cream with the exception of some chocolate every few days). Is anyone else that consuming that many calories? I have see 900 (or less) - 1500 for most everyone who has been brave enough to report their calories here. If I eat 1700-1800, I feel like I'm being completely being deprived. Forget the small portions or waiting several hours between meals. I get hungry in an hour or so after eating a big meal. I wonder if this has something to do with me starting off at a lower BMI and not having as much of the fat pad initially (so maybe I need more fill to shrink down the pouch-making area)?? But still, to distinguish my situation (and I really hope Catherine doesn't mind me comparing), I am at 2.25 cc's in my band as of this Monday, and Catherine, who has the same band as mine (correct me if I'm wrong) has been at 2.85 cc's since around March (only a few months after her surgery) and was at 2.25 (where I'm at now) or 2.0 just a couple months after sugery (I didn't get to 2.0 until mid-July). I was banded in December. She was banded in October. So should I not at least be at the 2.85 mark since it has been five months since the equivalent day (because it has been seven for her) that she was filled to that point of restriction? I know that everyone is different and has different adjustments that work for them, but with all the food intake issues I am having, I believe that there has been no reason to inch along so slowly. When I have gotten a fill, it's only been because I've gained or remained the same weight for several months. I sometimes feel that my exercise is what has gotten me to losing what I have and that if I stopped moving, the weight would come piling back on my body. I don't want to stop walking/jogging just to gain weight to get a fill though??? And I got this surgery to help with the willpower issues of eating AND improve my fitness. Why can't I do both? And what happens if I have to sacrifice a little exercise for a few months of stressful work, wedding planning, etc.? Then what? Will I balloon back up before the wedding (since I'm not at my sweet spot)? I always wimp out about petitioning for fills when I see my doctor because he seems so authoritative. It is hard to have any sort of heart to heart. That probably has something to do with our personalities. But I want to fit into a dream wedding dress and have the perfect day with no regrets next year, so I really want this weight off, off, off. My next appointment (not necessarily a fill since he likes to wait and see how things progress) isn't until December. Does anyone have any suggestions on how to get him to get the ball moving? I am really putting myself out there and want workable suggestions badly, but please be nice. :)

Next, Liz, I'm glad you had fun in Arkansas. Thanks for sharing your pictures too. BTW, does your family live close to the Duggars? They are a huge family on TLC (if you haven't heard of them previously). I know that they are from Arkansas. Random question, I know. :)

Finally, Gen, PREACH ON SISTA!!! Bread is in The Bible. I loved that!!! Actually, that was a super great post about carbs and serotonin. I learned a lot and realize why I thrive on pasta (although I've bee trying to do more of the wheat variety--it takes a bit to get used to it, so I can definitely see why the kids are having problems there). I wonder if chocolate is a carb (I crave it a LOT too and know a lot of women do)??? Does anyone know? I am keeping all of that info stored in my arsenal and may even need it for ammunition if the food police ever come a-knockin' about any carb intake issues they might think I have. Oh, and you mentioned cereal as bad. I didn't know that all of it was a bad sort of carb. Are there kinds that are good??? I try to get the kinds that are higher in fiber. I have one of the Kashi brands with strawberries in it, and (though I know, I know) I sometimes eat the chocolate mini wheats to get some of my chocolate craving out of my system (but didn't think it was terrible because the box says that it is high in fiber too--especialy since I thought it would be the best way to satisfy that craving). What gives here?

By the way, I wasn't eating breakfast (see Catherine's post about the skinny girl's secret), but I started to get so hungry what with lack of fill, etc. that I had to give in finally. Did I mention I need a fill??? Hhhheeeelllpppp!!!!!!!

Friday, October 9, 2009

Attention Bandsters

This is an informal information gathering for me, not of any sort of real reliability or validity. But if you have been banded a while, I am curious as to what the last time in your life was when you were at the weight you are now? Please let me know how many months or years you are out from surgery, if you are at or near goal, and when was the last time--about how old you were and the date, if you don't mind--that you were that weight. Other info, like heights and weights from now and in the past, dramatic weight increases/decreases in your life, or any other info you feel like sharing are interesting to me too if you are comfortable sharing anything else.

Why I am asking: for myself. I am curious if I'll be closer to where I was in late middle school/early high school (pretty skinny but still in the normal range), the middle of high school (middle to high normal range), late high school (perhaps a little overweight), or soon after HS (still definitely overweight though there were two periods when I lost a bit) when I get to a stopping point in my journey. I am getting gradually nearer to where I was in high school (but have a little ways to go). I know the journey is different for everyone, but I was kind of wondering if there were any commonality in stopping points in each of our personal histories (for instance, getting back to where we were around age 15), a set-point weight of sorts. I know this sounds a little odd and grasping, but it is something that I have wondered for a while. I would at least like to know where people fall even if it lacks any predictive value for my own weight loss.