Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Thin Fantasy Future

When I'm thin, I'll...

Did/do you ever contemplate your future in Thindom? I certainly had many of my hopes and dreams pinned on the tail of my thin future that would be. I would be funnier, smarter, and people would love me more. I would be successful. But I'm learning that I still have to take the steps and be proactive in accomplishing goals and creating my future. That is not to say that I don't feel great. I am definitely a lot more at peace with my current weight and how I look than I have been in years. I also feel less judged when I see people from my past--when they give me the up-and-down once-over looks, they aren't thinking, "Wow! She's gained a lot of weight!" There is definitely some confidence that comes with not having to worry about that. But, as many have mentioned, being thin is not a fix-all for life's issues, and it is not a yellow brick road to happiness and achievement.

What were some of the things you imagined doing or becoming when you achieved thinness? Has anything been more attainable as a result?

Thursday, March 25, 2010

The Nagging Question: Does Eating Sweets Mean Restriction is Needed?

I have noticed on a few blogs this week that people are mentioning issues with eating too many sweets; this is leading to their thoughts of needing fills. This confuses me.

I was told by my doctor's office before I was banded that if sweets were my primary food issue (as opposed to generally eating too much of the non-sugary type of food), then the band wasn't for me. This is because sweets liquify and go down with no problem, band or no band. This is why many sweets are in the 'slider' category. This applies to candy, cookies, ice cream, pies, cakes, sodas, milkshakes, or any other type of sweet (although there are certainly other non-sweet sliders like mashed potatoes, chips, pretzels, etc. too). Unlike gastric bypass and other procedures that have 'gastric dumping' as a side effect of eating sweets, there are no controls on eating sweets with the band. This made sense to me based on what I've researched and read.

So I was told that if sweets were my main problem, then I could still eat sweets all day without the band causing any real obstacle to that. The surgeon's office was straightforward with me and told me that though they would love to have me as a patient, I should definitely know that information up front so that I could make an informed decision. I honestly told the surgeon's office that I do love sweets (chocolate especially) but that I also had a big problem overeating in general. It was decided that the band would help--but still would not help with limiting my intake of sweets. That would be up to me and my self control (unfortunately).

At the same time, I've noticed that some of you have said that you've gone through periods where you don't crave sweets and have attributed this to the band. I can't say that this has been the case for me. While I have also not wanted sweets during some periods as much as I have at others, this was the case pre-banding too. For instance, I might crave them more around my period, after commercials for certain kinds of sweets, or when someone at work was doing a Subway run (it almost always made me want cookies--two or three--unfortunately). Other times, my cravings have taken a back seat (THANKFULLY!!!). I have honestly probably gone through more periods of craving sweets than of not craving them, but I guess my point is that I really don't think my band has made those cravings diminish or has really had much effect at all on those.

There are possible exceptions, I suppose. Sometimes, as I'm eating a cake or cookie or something like that, I'll feel kind of full for just a little while...but it seems like there is something to the liquification thing because I'll go right back to my status quo soon enough. And if I eat a doughnut-type of sweet item, I can potentially get stuck because of the bread-like consistency. Lucky for me, I'm not a big doughnut fan (although the custard-filled, chocolate-covered ones are mighty nice at times--by the way, I'm not advocating sweet consumption just in case anyone is taking this post as such).

Again, I'm just stating my experience here, and I understand that we could all have different experiences with this. I hope I'm not stepping on toes here. I'm just curious about the sweet issue and restriction. Are there other issues making you guys think you need fills? Are you having issues with solids such as meat as well, or is it just the sweets? Do you subscribe to the above information about the sweets liquifying? Do you still crave sweets post banding? What are your experiences? I've long wondered about this from reading certain statements in posts, but I figured it was high time this was explored since there are so many addressing this lately.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

A Non-Fill, Some Weight Issues, and My Stretch Marks

First of all, I went to the doctor this week for my bi-monthly fill appointment. In determining whether I needed a fill or not, he asked me how I felt and what I thought about my restriction. I suppose he puts a little more weight (pun intended) on the patient's opinion the further he or she is out from surgery; I like this--it is certainly a welcome change from earlier fills. I told him that I felt like it was too early for me to really tell this time but that I've been doing okay for the past few weeks. He said that I am probably close but that I could come in and weigh myself on any given day without pre-scheduling and set up a fill appointment afterwards if my weight rises. He was complimentary on my weight loss too; that was nice to hear.

And on the subject of weight, I have been down to 153-155 lbs. these last couple of weeks. However, I am having some personal health issues, and I don't know whether I will go back up to 157-159 when I'm back to normal (I'm sure those issues have at least contributed to why I have lost because I am normally the slowest loser on God's green earth)??? I am still not at goal, so I truly hope I don't bounce back up to continued frustration.

Relatedly, I was reading another post this morning from a bandster who has been banded for a few years. She has gained back 40 lbs. since being banded. Linda also recently spoke of a family member's family member (a tenuous relationship) who had gained back a lot of (or maybe all) her weight. Although neither of these stories was presented in a way that aimed to make me worry, these things can't help but make me nervous. After all, that is one of the reasons I got the band--I wanted this weight gone for good. As Linda said, we have a great support system here and have access to information and such. I hope I can keep that in mind and that these things will keep my weight gone for good.

Lastly, I have been noticing the stretch marks on my hips and upper thighs seemingly becoming more and more visible. Ugh. They almost look like spider veins in certain lighting because of the color and the refracting light. Is there a remedy for this annoyingness?