Saturday, June 25, 2011

Two years went by…

Today is my second surgiverasary. My life is changed. It changed dramatically, and for much better. My health problems like Diabetes, Apnea, and neuroma are all gone. My energy had come back to almost previous level. This was different from other WLS patients who seem to get an energy boost almost instantly. For me it took almost two years.
I never reached my goal of below 170 lbs (the weight of my youth) but may be this goal was not rational. What worries me is that I leveled off at around 195, and that is 15 lbs (at least) too much. Well, still it is work in progress. The recovery from abdominoplasty (almost one year ago) was also long and only recently the pains disappeared. So I can honestly state that for me it was two years of painful process, but life is finally ‘normal’. 
I am very glad that I went through this all. At times it was a nightmare, but eventually I woke up to a bright new day. I almost forgot what it feels to be obese. Next month I will be 64. Until I was 40 my weight was OK fluctuating between 170 and 200, however it exploded after my back injury and the following 10 years of lack of exercise (plus some serious overeating). In 1986 I was married (happily divorced now) and my wedding weight was 170 lbs. The back injury happened later same year. By 1996 I was way over 300 lbs. I do not know how much – I stopped weighting myself, but from doctors records I know that I hit 330+. The weight loss/gain yoyo continued for many more years, health problems developed. So now, being at less than 200 lbs. feels normal, because in reality I spent half of my life at this weight, not the last 25 years before the surgery. I feel like I am BACK!
I still desire to loose additional 15-20 lbs. But I am OK if I do not.
I enjoy being diabetes free. I enjoy not having sleep apnea. I enjoy not having the neuroma and horrible pain in my feet. I enjoy shopping for clothes.
I turned back my weight, and in some strange way I also turned back the clock. I feel I have 30 more great years ahead of me; working, bicycling, motorcycling, writing, and living.
I never regretted the choice I made to have these two surgeries, but now I am just very thankful I had them.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Sailing, sailing...

On Saturday, August 29, 2009 I wrote about Predictable Unpredictability
I tried quinoa on that day, and the result was violently unpleasant. Well, long time had passed by and since I am almost two years from the surgery I tried that super-grain again. The result was exactly same as in 2009. Very unpleasant. Only after this I did some research and found out that:
Quinoa is a very nutritious grain, and an ideal food as part of a gluten-free diet. It is very popular with celiacs and those with a gluten allergy. However, a small minority of people report becoming sick after eating quinoa, usually after consuming it for some time. This is a real shame, as quinoa is very tasty, extremely nutritious, and easy to cook. It is versatile, and can be used in many ways. The most likely problem is saponin, which protects the plant from insect and fungal attack.
The solution is to wash it, but I am not sure if I will try it again....

My tailbone is healing slowly, I might need another cortisone shot.  I also have some real discomfort around the abdominoplasty scar - even coughing causes sharp pain. I had seen my surgeon and he just told me to be patient and wait few more months... So few steps forward, few steps backward, few sideways, few up and down.
The bariatric bypass second 'surgeversary' is in one month.  I still cannot believe that trip, and how it still continues, hangs over my head, changing my life, and still is not predictable.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Cortisone Shots

Next Thursday I will get cortisone shots in my tailbone. It really got sore, really sore.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Off All Those Pounds I Lost, I Miss My Butt The Most

I have a big BMW motorcycle with a very comfortable custom seat, but my scooter, even though it is very big for a scooter (400lbs+, 500cc), that I use almost every day, crated problems. My tailbone hurts like crazy. It started on my flight to Italy and back, thanks to the terrible airplane seats, and riding scooter just hurts. I miss my butt! Today a new custom saddle is being built for me. I am waiting impatiently.
Since my last post my weight went down substantially into very low 190s, but in the last two days it jumped up by 5 lbs. I see that this is going be a lifelong struggle. I wish I could stop eating at all, just as I quit smoking over 30 years ago. I’ve got rid of diabetes 5 weeks after R-N-Y bypass, but I am still hypoglycemic, and if I don’t eat, my sugar drops to the point of being shaky and almost passing out. I have great craving for carbs – and do not deal well with meat. That is total reversal of my pre-surgery eating preferences.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Visited by Deamons of the Past

Just returned from 2 weeks in Italy - over 10 lbs heavier. Traveling is a good excuse - but still only an excuse. My old daemons hunted me. I am not posting this new weight as my 'last' - I will wait two weeks and if I am not below my lowest weight than I will publicly chastise myself here.

Food log, calorie count, bicycle - here I come!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Two major trips survived

I just returned from a conference in Orlando, Florida, and week before another one in Austin, Texas. I was wined and dined, and survived. The amount of food served at these occasions is enormous. At Saturday dinner I had to stop after appetizers and went for a walk when everybody else had been devouring their full plates. I had some dessert later though...
I started to drink regular coffee, and had some light beer.
Life is really good.
The other day Associate Dean of the Business College stopped me and noticed: Whoa, you look so slim!
No, I responded. I AM SLIM.
He laughed.
Boy, do I have kick out of those things.

Monday, January 17, 2011

As Promised!

The year started as promised.
I have great energy, bike, walk fast, I am restless, meeting people, this is and will be my best year ever.
Many trips are planned and booked.
Pants size dropped to 32-33!
After the infection healed - the recovery was remarkably fast, with almost daily noticeable progress.
I am riding to school three times per week on the bicycle, and each day I am doing it faster with much less effort. It is noticeable when I have to cross the bridge over Willamette river - and the little climb is no longer even noticed.
I keep replacing clothes, and the motorcycle gear I bought last summer is way too big. Spending money on new outfits never felt so good.

This bariatric trip turned out to be a miracle.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Looking Back...

On June 19, 2009, one week before the Gastric Bypass surgery, I wrote this here:
What I am looking forward:
•    Of course weight lost.

•    Get rid of my diabetes that I could not control without Insulin, but with insulin I gain weight. Bayetta did not affect my weight – but blood sugar stayed high (mornings on the average 200). Actually diabetes is bigger motivation than just weight loss. Gastric bypass supposed to eliminate 90% of diabetes and I hope I will be among that number.
Accomplished!!! Diabetes is a long forgotten history! Sweet!
•    Increased energy level. At work I could be full of energy – but at home I collapse. Instead of doing some physical activities I use to love to do, biking, walking, etc, I prefer to go to bed. A lot of times I am just incredibly exhausted…
Gee, I somehow remember that I had more energy than I have now, I guess I was not that good… OK – I am working on this one. I believe that the 'old' tiredness was caused by diabetes - not an extra weight.
•    I have become very conscious about my weight and for sure decided that I would not date any woman who is so overweight, and therefore I feel like a hypocrite when I expect women to ignore my looks.
There was a time after couple of failed relationships that I blamed my weight for their collapse. It does not matter if that was true or not, but that is how I ended up to see it. I am very happy with my looks now.
As Steward Smiley (I mean Senator...)  used to say: "I'm good enough, I'm smart enough, and doggone it, people like me."  8^)
What I am afraid:
•    Changes in all food related activities, which really mean almost all social interaction.

It turned out to be true, but not so difficult to cope. No problem!
•    Replacing one disease (or handicap) with self-inflicted another.
Yes – but this one is very much controllable – take multivitamins, calcium, D3, B12, make sure that you have enough protein… No problem!
•    Lose skin and looking like 100 years old.
Not too bad – still looking younger than my 63, but the extra skin and loose muscles were fixed.
•    I understand that many people who underwent this surgery develop depression. I guess this is my fear number one.
Did not happen.
•    I am not sure how this procedure will affect my work. Teaching is not an easy job.
While it was physically difficult – the two major surgeries caused me to miss two lectures total. No problem!