Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Saying Hello and Goodbye

Knowing that I will be (hopefully) losing a 100lbs is mind boggling to me. That is a person, a whole person. Here is what I am looking forward to saying hello and goodbye to and a little sad at the same time:

Looking forward to saying GOODBYE to:

Granny panties
Pants that could house a small family
Getting bruises on the sides of my thighs from trying to sit in a beach chair
Sweating before I get out the door because I just walked down the stairs
The "swishy thigh walk" know what I am talking about. Where your thighs rub together and it hurts like heck because you now have a rash
People asking me when my baby is due!

The list is, I will cut it short by stopping there.

A little sad about saying goodbye to:

My Diet Cokes/Diet Mt. Dew
Ice Cream
Loss of a friend (aka "the fat") who was with me during extremely rough times.

That is about all I am sad about.

Looking forward to saying hello to:

Going off my medications (bp, diabetes, cholesterol..need I go on?)
Making a new friend with my new body. Treating it with respect and trying to make amends with the old body.
CLOTHES!!!! I have such a limited selection right now. It will be like Disney World.
Chasing my kids around without wanting to pass out after only 5 seconds.
Wearing a sundress (strapless) Oh the shock that I will have when I can actually wear one.
Living... living a long time, I pray.

This list could go on and, I will cut it here.

I am sure that I am going to go through a million emotions. Hang in there with me. I really am a sane gal. Sometimes :)

It’s a big day…..Aug. 24 8:28

I officially have a surgery date!! October 11th!! I am so excited! They have given me my pre-op appointments, everything. Woo....taking a bit of a breath here.

Being "officially official" has brought a whirlwind of emotions. I can't really explain it. One second it is true elation....the next second..."holy crap", the next second "How will I get everything done before then?", next second...looking ever so lovingly at my Diet Mountain Dew and realizing that I have to say good bye... for good. No more bubblies in the tummy. No more lots of things frankly. The realization that my whole world is about to get rocked is here. But, I am ok with it.

I have tried...I really have. I have tried all the herbs, prescription weightloss meds, fasting, Dr. supervised diets, literally every diet on the market. I gave it all that I had. Can I say that I have been 100% all the time? No. I would be a liar if I said that. I am not perfect. But, I have done the best that I knew how to do.

I am ready.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Do you think.....

that the way the world perceives obesity is sometimes the way that we expect them to perceive?

Case in point....I went to 3 different stores today. I rarely look at people in the eye anymore. I automatically assume that they are making judgments about me. I am assuming that they are watching everything that I put in my shopping cart. I assume that if they smile at me, they must be an escape convict or something.

But, in reality....could it be that just maybe they are not even thinking about what I look like for one minute? Maybe they are in such a hurry to get home to their life that they don't see anyone. Maybe they look straight past me because something not so happy is going on in their life. Maybe just maybe, it isn't all about me. But yet, I have already made my judgments and perceptions before I ever walk in that door. I automatically assume that people are staring at the "big girl".

Maybe we just all need to get out of our heads for just a minute. Maybe we should start holding our heads up just a little higher. When are we going to wake up and realize that life is happening before our eyes and we are missing it because we are too busy assuming.

I am going to start working really hard on holding my head up. No matter what weight I am.

Hope you will too.

Monday, August 27, 2007

It is Officially....Official

I officially have a surgery date!! October 11th!! I am so excited! They have given me my pre-op appointments, everything. Woo....taking a bit of a breath here.

Being "officially official" has brought a whirlwind of emotions. I can't really explain it. One second it is true elation....the next second..."holy crap", the next second "How will I get everything done before then?", next second...looking ever so lovingly at my Diet Mountain Dew and realizing that I have to say good bye... for good. No more bubblies in the tummy. No more lots of things frankly. The realization that my whole world is about to get rocked is here. But, I am ok with it.

I have tried...I really have. I have tried all the herbs, prescription weightloss meds, fasting, Dr. supervised diets, literally every diet on the market. I gave it all that I had. Can I say that I have been 100% all the time? No. I would be a liar if I said that. I am not perfect. But, I have done the best that I knew how to do.

I am ready.

Friday, August 24, 2007

Insurance Approval

YEA!! I got insurance approval....wooo hooo!!! I am so excited!! Now, all we are waiting on is the actual "Certificate of approval" from Insurance. Then, Duke sets me up for a date for surgery. I hear that they are scheduling now in October. I should have a date in the next day or two.

WOW.....a month from now is when I probably will be having surgery. It is not "real" to me yet. I imagine when I know the date and I start preparing and it gets closer...things are going to get really real.

I just wanted to share my good news!!!

Have a great Friday!!!

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

4 Years Ago Today....

I was lying in the hospital, having been there for close to 3 weeks. I was very sick with high blood pressure, and a baby desperately needing to get out of my stomach. They warned me that her lungs weren't ready. The doctors had to give me a drug to help me not go into a seizure. I had pre-eclampsia.

4 years ago today, the doctors said that our baby had
to come out or that we both could die.

She was born at 4:00 in the afternoon. She was so tiny and so beautiful. Her chest
was puffing in and out so heavily. She was struggling to breathe. They let me kiss her for a millisecond and I never held her in my arms again for another week.

She was rushed to the NICU. I was stuck in bed with IV's hanging out of me. Later that night, the nurses and doctors took pity on me and let my husband wheel me down to the NICU. I was still hooked to all types of medicines. There was still a fear that I would have a seizure afterwards.

I wheeled myself right up to the window of the inc
ubator that my tiny-iny baby was lying in. She had a chest tube, tubes in every place imaginable and her chest was so swollen from trying to breathe. Never in my life did I feel the way that I felt in that moment. I was terrified of losing this beautiful angel that God had blessed me with. I cried with every tear that I had in my body.

That night, the doctor came in to sit next to me. He held my hand ever so gently and told me that he was called in because our baby's lung had collapsed and they would have to transport her by ambulance to the next hospital that had a Higher Level Newborn Intensive Care Unit. He said not to worry, that they would take care of her.

They wheeled her d
own in my room before going into an ambulance. I touched the glass and told her that I loved her and not to give up. "Please don't give up"

We reunited several days later. I was taken off all IV
's and able to go to the hospital that she was at. I rarely left her side. She was in a tiny incubator and had IV's coming out of her head, toes, nose. My husband and I clung to each other.

When we walked in
, the nurses were full of smiles. They told us that they had no idea what had happened, but, our baby girl had taken a turn. A turn for the better. They said that she must have loved that ambulance ride, because she only needed a ventilator for a day (compared to the original 3 weeks) and that she was making a miraculous recovery. I finally held her through the incubator. It was like a robot machine. I touched her tiny fingers and prayed every prayer that I could pray.

A few days later....we were told that she would be released from the NICU and sent to another hospital for a few days of observation. I was able to hold her in my arms. She smelled so good. She smiled at me and I knew we were going to be ok.

Today is her 4th
birthday. I have been grateful for every moment of those 4 years. She is a vivacious little girl who has a feisty spirit that she had to come into this world with. She lights up my world and I thank God every day for allowing her to hang on. I celebrate life with her. I am so grateful.

There is rarely a day
that goes by that I don't realize how lucky I am to still be on this earth with 3 amazing children. Most importantly, that precious little baby who struggled so hard to breathe........., she never gave up.

Happy Birthday Princess!!!

What has the process of WLS been like thus far?

I think that I have mentioned that I am going through Duke University's WLS Center. They have been named "Center of Excellence".

I absolutely love everything about their program. I have said before that I am really big into researching and cross checking. I am very lucky to live in an area where there is such a well known establishment that has one of the best Bariatric programs around.

It is an extensive program, as well it should be. I would be scared to death if I signed up a life changing event like this surgery and got it in a couple of weeks with no thoroughness/nada.

First, they require that you attend a seminar with the surgeons to get a very in-depth briefing on what procedures they offer and every detail that you ever wanted to know about the process. They strongly encourage family/friend involvement. Then, if you feel like you are ready to apply to the program, then you have to fill out an application. You have to be approved to enter the program.

Your first appointment is usually not until about 2 months after the seminar. My first seminar was in March. Which works out, because you have to get a gazillion tests run. Basically, these doctors will know more about me than anyone else in the entire universe. Hmmmm...not sure how I feel about that. :)

My first appointment was in May and I had all my tests done. Of course, some of them came back abnormal (thyroid stuff) and you have to get that back in line before you can move forward.

Anyway, the first meet with the Nurse and she goes over all of your tests with you and you go over again in detail about the surgery. Then, off to meet the Nutritionist. He was great. Except for the fact that he told me that I can't gain anymore weight until surgery. And back on a diet. WHAT THE H*&! I don't know how this is going to happen. I swear to you, if I look at decides to jump on my back side and doesn't move!! Anyway, he was great...but, terrified to gain weight (which I have...but, for many reasons...another topic one day). meet with the Psychiatrist. This can be intimidating. I am literal person. If you ask a question, I will give you a straight answer. So, the whole business of asking me "Have you ever?...." opens up a whole can of stuff. I probably scared the intern (who did the initial assessment) and she still remembers me, I am quite sure. Ever seen the movie "American Pie"? The girl in it says "One day in band camp...." That was me.. she asked questions about everything. Nothing was too personal. The old girl is probably going through therapy after meeting me ;) Just kidding. But, they have to make sure you are ready for a major life change.

I am still in Insurance review and hope that I hear this week. Then, I hear that it is about a month until surgery. It doesn't end there, because they have support groups and after care and you still have to see a therapist to help you with all the "emotional" changes. There are so much studies going on at Duke, that you can enroll in a study where they follow you for years to come to check on your progress.

I am very happy to be with a group like them. Everyone there is so nice and they answer all of your questions for you. The women up front that deal with all of the insurance, and the phone calls are true saints. You cannot find a group any better. You would be hard pressed.

I am looking forward to telling you how things go after surgery. More updates to come....

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Musings at the Mall

I am a lover of fashion. You would never ever know it by the way that I dress now. But, I am fascinated by colors, designs, trends, the way things shape your body. How the cloth feels against your skin, what type of texture is it?...does it hug too tight?, or does it flow? It's not that I don't want to be fashionable...but, the marketplace hasn't really helped us gals in the over size 14 department, not to mention...the size 24 department.

But, being a Plus Size Gal....the mall can be an evil, evil place.

The boutique stores mock me with the latest and greatest trends that go up to about a size "14" and sister...that is pushing it if you make up to the size 14. (you start getting the "look" if you ask if there are any bigger sizes in those types of shops)

Then, there are the "department" stores that offer "Plus Size" clothing to us lovely ladies. I swear to goodness that the same designer makes all of the clothes and their names must be "Granny Ethyl and Gertie Gertrude". Because not only does it look like they made a shirt/dress/pants out of a potato sack...but, she got a spray can and sprayed big ass flowers all over it. (see a great example...see above picture). For the LOVE OF all that is holy...what is up with the flowers?! THEN, there are the dresses. Best if I don't get started on that. Interestingly, most of the clothes have a touch of a "elderly home" smell to them. Feeling completely deflated...I go down to my tried and true "Lane Bryant".

I give some "kudos" to Lane Bryant. But, they piss me off too. With all due respect, they do try to keep up with some trends. But, their prices are ridiculous. Rude as it may sound..I know damn well that they ship these clothes out to another country to be made. I can GUARANTEE you that adding a little bit more cloth to a shirt, a dress, and or underwear does not cost the manufacturer exponentially that much more. But, yet....for a nice is about 50.00. No big deal right? Well, if I jump over to the Gap or another store for the same shirt, smaller size. SHOCKING...... 1/2 the price. I have every right to dress in the latest fashions too, just because I have a little "junk in my trunk" does not mean that I don't have fashion rights!

Do I wear a sign on my swelly belly when I walk into the store...."I AM FAT....SO, IT IS YOUR EXCLUSIVE RIGHT TO CHARGE ME MORE". If I could get away with it, and didn't have my children with me, and wasn't afraid to do it....I seriously would pull down my pants and bend over to show my big fat white butt and say " you can kiss my @%#!" But, being the polite person that I am, I smile at the sales lady and say... "sure, I will take that semi fashionable pair of pants that will take me 2 months to pay off because it had a little more fabric added onto it". And with a smile....I wave goodbye to the only store that tries to care. All the while muttering really naughty words underneath my breath.

HOWEVER....there is hope. One of favorite actresses, designer, all around great celebrity is Sarah Jessica Parker who is trying to make a difference. She makes clothes up to size 30 and nothing is over 20.00. Very hip clothes regardless of age. Sad thing is....there are 4 stores in my state that carry them, and not one are near me. But, thank you Sarah for caring. No sarcasm here. See a need....fill a need. More should get on the train and do something about this fashion travesty!! My mission in life (if I could ever figure out how to sew), would to get out there and make an impact in this area.

More mall musings from today to come :)

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Fat Rant

I am on a roll today with writing. I obviously am stressing and thinking about food way too much. So, I am writing a lot today to get my mind off of things. The kids are on play dates and that leaves me with a little bit of free time. SHOCK!!!

When you watch this video from You Tube that I have on "Fat Rant". She has such a good point! No matter what weight you are, if you feel like you are overweight...a lot of us use being overweight as an excuse. An excuse for so many things. are my latest excuses....

I am terrified of going to my High School Reunion because I am fat. Maybe on my 50th reunion or something. Because surely, I will be thinner when I am 80 something. Right?

I will buy more clothes when I lose weight. Because larger sizes are too expensive and are just not fashionable. I will just stick to the oversized t-shirts and jogging pants, because that is really sexy.

I can't go to my husbands work outing and have people see me like this. I will wait until I lose some more weight.

I can't get back in touch with my oldest and dearest friends who knew me when I was thinner. What will they think? They may want me to visit or something. I can't do that. They will be so disappointed in me. I will wait.

Oh sorry, i can't go to Ladies Night Out for our monthly neighborhood get together. Why? Oh...well, I can feel a headache coming on. Truth be told.....I am the biggest one there. I just know they are judging me.

OH? You want me to volunteer at my kids school? Ummmm....I think I have a busy schedule until 2010. That way, if I don't go to her school....the kids won't laugh at me and she won't be hurt.

SURE!! I will write that screenplay. As long as some 20 something skinny chick hands it in to a producer. Because, if they find out that I am fat....I am so out of here. So, best keep straggling along on this screenplay that i am writing.

OK OK OK you get the picture.

I realize how all ridiculous this sounds. In fact, we all do it. We make excuses for everything. I realize that I have. I realize that I have lost the last few years of my life waiting to do stuff until I lost "weight". I realize that with or without this has to go on and it will go on.

I think that I have a lot to offer as a person. No, I know I do. This woman is right on this video blog. We have to stand up for ourselves and be proud. No, I am not proud of being obese. But, I am doing stuff about it. I am trying. What I am proud of is that I am not giving up. I want to be a better friend, mother, wife, sister, everything. But, i can't do that until I come to terms with the fact that weight does not define me as a person.

I am working on it. I am going to step on down to Florida in my best "Plus Size" attire with my head held up to my HS reunion next month. And, I am not going to apologize for my weight. I will be proud of being me.

Check out this Joy Nash's video blog. I love funny, sarcastic things. But, she does make a good point.

I read this in People the other day....

I read it in this month People about how Kirstie and Valerie Bertenelli have lost 100 something pounds between them. I think that is awesome. They are doing Jenny Craig. I did Jenny Craig way back in my early 20's. It was great. It is just over time, I added the weight back.

But, something that Kirstie said in her article bothered me. She said that why she is opposed to Gastric Bypass is because you are still stuck with the problem of how you got fat in the first place. That is totally ok that she is against surgery. A lot of people are. However, maybe some people don't deal with the inside while working on the outside.

But, I am here to tell you that is a huge part of this surgery. Dealing with feelings, your past, your hurts...your everything. In the program that I am is a HUGE. She is right you might lose all that weight...but, you are still the same person on the inside. But, what I have had to go through is go alllllll the way back to my childhood and how my parents ate, my habits, when was the first "life event" that took place, how to I handle it with food, what did I feel about my body image. We are covering everything. It has been so enlightening to me to really see what a profound effect food has had on me.

Absolutely, I didn't eat the right things all the that. I used food as a friend, instead of food....check, got that. But, what we are working on now is how to transfer my relationship with food and make it a "non-issue". Meaning, I am learning how to channel my stress and frustrations in other positive outlets.

I know that I have some uphill battles ahead of me with surgery. I know that. But, half the battle is what I have been going through up until this point. Getting emotionally and physically prepared. I do know that Surgery is not the magic pill. But, this chick has done her emotional homework to figure out how to change how I am with food on the inside. So, Kirstie...I hear ya sister about not being for surgery. But, don't just assume that people who have surgery don't have to go through SERIOUS life altering changes on the inside too.

I am proud of her though..both of them. They have lost that weight and we should all rally behind each other whichever method that we choose. Fat is fat my friends. Getting it off and to stay off is what counts.

Friday, August 17, 2007

Someone stole my body!!!

I am mad. Not an angry, bitter, old hag or anything. Just mad as hell. I feel like I woke up and someone stole my body in the middle of the night. However, these thieves weren’t your ordinary kind. They were kind enough to return my body. But, the cruel twist is that they returned the WRONG BODY!!!

The body that they left me with was a size 22/24! OMG!!! I mean, how cruel can you get? Couldn’t they have returned a size 6 body or something? Not only that, this new body has all these aches and pains. And for the love of god…what is this cellulite they put on me?

If you have any idea where my body could have gone…please let me know. I have already put out an APB.

The only response that I have received was…..”Have you thought about a diet…maybe you will be able to find her that way?”


Any day now

Alrighty then, I suppose that patience isn't one of my best virtues. Today marks one week that my "file" has been sent off to insurance. I am told that a week and 1/2 is the longest it may take. But, I guess I have forgotten about the 2 weekend days in there. Oy!! I even called my "insurance angel" at Duke today. When I say angel...i mean angel...she is a saint to put up with people like me calling her everyday.

I know in the scheme of things, this wait is nothing. But, to me it is everything. I have been through hoops, and so much therapy (more to continue, I am sure), tests galore and I am finally ready. But, it is all dependent on insurance at this point. I am not good with the unknown.

What will happen if I get the dreaded "no"? I know that I will appeal. But, at that point...I will feel lost. I will keep trying the next diet or "way of living". But, frankly...I do believe that I will be devastated. I continue to think positive. This is how it always works for me. When I stress about it, think about it. Nothing happens. But, just as soon as I divert my attention...the phone will ring.

Maybe I can run around the block a few times in this above 100 degree temperature. I am QUITE sure that will get my mind off of things.

Weighing in on Weight Aug 16, 2007 11:16 PM

Weight affects such a large part of a persons life. I don't know about yours, but, definitely mine. In the past 4 years it has really taken over my life. It is soooooo much more than clothing size for me. I have been diagnosed with high blood pressure, asthma, high cholesterol, arthritis, bone spurs, autoimmune disease, mild sleep apnea in just a few short years. It is so emotional for me. Because, I remember a time when I was so active and so healthy. I felt so alive.

Now, I feel betrayed. Betrayed by my body. It is interesting reading so many different blogs, or stories on others view on weight. Some basically believe it is about "stop eating so much". Goodness, wouldn't it be that simple. Others believe that you need to have more discipline in your life. OR the best that we are a lazy bunch. Sometimes I can feel the looks of disapproval from others. Especially other women. We seem to be so judgmental of ourselves and of each other. Instead of banding together and supporting each other. A lot are determined to tear the other down.

I believe that a lot of thin people believe that they are the superior "being". I know some people who come across that way. They love to give the advice on what to eat, how to eat, what I should do. Somehow, they are the authority. (I am not talking about the actual medical community) But, then, I see that they have other kinds of issues that aren't so healthy in their personal life. I surely wouldn't sit around and preach to them about it.

I have to say that the biggest thing that I look forward to as the weight comes off is:

To actually win a race against my 2 year old :)
Go up the stairs without turning purple and breathing heavy
Get off all of these medications
Stop seeing so many doctors
Running again
Feeling energy

And I would be remiss if I said that I wasn't looking forward to actually shopping in Victoria Secret. Looking sexy without having "fat back" in a sundress. Not having to wear 2 or 3 Spanx at one time to suck in a tummy that people still insist on asking "How far along are you?"

Wow.... cannot wait!

Thursday, August 16, 2007


I am on my way now!! I have just been told by Duke that my file has been sent off to insurance. I really don't have a gage on how long it will take to hear back. Of course, I am excited, but, I am also very nervous. Right now, Insurance is the only thing standing in between me and the surgery. It is such a scary thing to have "big corporation" holding fate into your hands.

I meet all of the qualifications for insurance. Qualifications for surgery is to be a BMI of 40 or more, or a BMI of 35 or more with co-morbitities. I am in the 35 or more group. I am right around 37 or 38. I have high blood pressure, high cholesterol, insulin resistance (taking glucophage for it), joint pain and should I keep going? Goodness....I feel like a 100 year old woman. I am only 38.

I am remaining positive and full of hope. I am so ready to get my health back, my life back.

Hoping for the best!!

Transfer Addiction

What is transfer addiction? Well, in the Weight loss community (whether you have surgery or not). It is a process that you have to go through to really figure out what it is that you are going to substitute for food. For me, food was my best friend. We were thick as thieves. I didn’t always over eat. When I was an athlete, I used it as fuel to see how good I could get at that particular sport. When I was a cheerleader, I would withhold it to see how thin I could get. (which never happened). When I had a fight with a friend, or a bad break-up…my lover “Mr. Godiva” would come and rescue me from the pain. Then, when I got married and had children and other stresses came up. I would make excuses and say “hey, I deserve home made ice cream today…I worked 10 hours and then am a full time mom”.

But, you see..I have a sordid past if you will. Like probably 90% of the world. Things happened in my life that I consider a tragedy. Sometimes, it made me become so fierce in overcoming obstacles in my way. Sometimes, my past made me feel less adequate than the rest of the world. So, my best friend food could always be there to depend on.

So, when I have WLS…what will be take the place of that comfort companion? It can’t be alcohol, or cigarettes, or sudden crack usage. They teach you in the program to find alternatives. The obvious is exercising…but, they tell you not to become an addict at that either. I am like “crap, what the hell is left?” I suppose sex 24 hours a day is good. But, that is an addiction too. :)SO, my transfer addiction is going to be writing. I have always written since I was a kid. I am now writing screenplays on the side in my so non-existent free time. But, I like to blog. I like to journal. I am told that everytime that I think about food….to write.

I think you will see a lot of writing out of me for the next FOREVER!! ;)Food is a drug for some of us and I am headed to rehab.