Anticipation - It's Not Just for a Ketchup Commerical - Lenexa, KS

I started my journey in June 2014, first the info...

I started my journey in June 2014, first the info class and then the barrage of paperwork, psychologist visits, insurance gymnastics (my case worker was phenomenal during this approval process), endoscope, surgeon meeting, pre-op education, dietician class - final approval from insurance and surgery scheduling. I was never an overweight child or teen - I began gaining weight in a very unhappy marriage. It's amazing what giving everything you have to keep a home, raise a child and try to make someone happy who will never truly be a happy person can do to a person's self esteem. Divorce helped but a whole new set of issues takes over - you put yourself last in everything. Fast forward 17 years - yes,'s time to do something for myself that will lead to a healthier life. I've tried all the diets, programs, pills, exercise (for the most part) was out for me due to my knees now being bone on bone. I'm diabetic, PCOS, have IBS, high blood pressure and edema in both lower legs. I'm starting out at 243 (5'6"), my sleeve procedure is scheduled in three weeks, I will have one week of protein liquid shakes, blood work and last surgeon visit mid month then D-Day! I know I'm not so far down the rabbit hole as some of my co-patients at the clinic - I see it in their faces during class, wondering why I'm even sitting there. I hope they have the kind of experiences and success they dream of and only want that for myself too. For me, this is where it needs to stop and my ability to correct this direction must start. My new husband is very supportive, my best friend is very supportive, the rest of my family can wait to know I've had the surgery later, they'll be fine and don't need to worry needlessly right now. I'm encouraged by stories I read on this forum, I am looking forward to this journey.

Two weeks out - Excited!

I want to say thank you to everyone who've posted well wishes - your stories are inspiring, so thank you!! Today, I'm two weeks out for my surgery - I'm terribly excited - still subbing at least one meal a day with the protein shakes. Tomorrow is my second surgical pre-op visit and I'll have blood draws, etc - final instructions with my surgeon. November 24th starts full time protein shakes until surgery. I've found myself going through my clothes and organizing them large to smaller, hoping that I skip entire sections LoL Realistically, I know this is a process - I didn't get here overnight and it's not going to come off overnight.

Less Than a Week

Woke up this morning and realized by this time next week I will be sleeved. (!!!!) I'm very excited and know these next seven days will fly by. I have been given the okay from my surgical team to have 3 oz of turkey and some green beans for Thanksgiving - now *that's* a gift I didn't expect :) I didn't even ask them, just figured I'd be shaking it and get through the day. Another challenge is a hometown college game tailgate everyone goes to but I've decided to go visit my dad instead of partaking in the ritual this year - less explaining and less temptation. I will be taking some photos soon as I don't want to get too far out before I take the 'before' pictures - as awful as it will be - I loathe having my photo taken fully clothed and looking my best (or at this weight as best as I can) . Happy Thanksgiving to all and remember that it's more about spending time with your loved ones and being thankful than it is about the food. I'm thankful the community here has been so supportive and non-judgemental, it's truly a blessing at this stage of the process to know I can come onto this site and read the encouragement, struggles and victories of everyone.

Post Op 2 Days

I am now post-op by two days and only had one night in the surgical center. It seemed forever for me to wake up from the general anesthesia - I heard one nurse comment that I was 'thrashing about' and being 'difficult'. Ok, I'll own that if she owns her actions of pulling at me and barking orders. She was a bit rough and seemed to just want to get through her shift - other than her, the staff was wonderful. My overnight nurses were sweethearts, checking vitals every two hours and had me up walking six hours after surgery. I'm home now and have to watch it when I get up out of the bed, burning sensation at the incision sites. My abdomen is really hard, I'm guessing it's from the gas that hasn't expelled? Any suggestions on how to make that happen more quickly would be greatly appreciated. Also, the itching all over, is that an anesthesia reaction? I went into the surgery at 229 and when I came home yesterday, I commited a cardinal sin....I stepped on the scale and it was 241 - talk abut depressed!! I'm working on my fluid intake, had two tablespoons of sugar free jello yesterday. Even though I'm in pain (they gave me liquid Tylenol3) I know this will be the best thing I've ever done for myself.

One Week Post Op

I'm feeling so much better, 8 days post op - energy levels are still up and down and was told by the physician assistant today that my energy will continue to be low probably for another week. I was able to eat 1/3 of a scrambled egg this morning and about 1 Tbsp of refried beans this evening. I'm personally not tolerating the beans well, maybe another day. I had the staples removed this afternoon, no biggie, no pain. My weight is down 7 lbs since the morning of my surgery, now at 222 - considering that I came home heavier than when I went in, this was a welcomed number. Keep the faith for all the members with upcoming surgeries scheduled, it's not easy but anything worth 'it', never is.

Two Weeks Post Op

Tonight is two weeks since coming home from the surgical center and it seems like it's been much longer. I'm feeling much better but still can't completely bend down from a standing position. I think I took a step back with the soft food - having problems with eggs now and definitely not the refried beans. I tried deli turkey and the texture is odd now. Any suggestions? I don't have any appetite and seem to have a bit of trouble even getting 40 gr of protein in during the day. I may talk to my nutritionist by next Monday if I don't progress. Is anyone else having these issues two weeks out from surgery? Other than this, I'm feeling great so anyone who is in their first week, just know that you will feel better by Week 2. :)

Six Weeks Post Op

It's been a few weeks since my last posting but I'm making progress. I'm down 34 lbs total to 209, clothing is sagging in all the right places. I'm having trouble getting all my protein in daily and water. I feel like I'm grazing all day (BabyBel cheese, deli turkey, soups, yogurt) since I can still only get about 3 Tblsps worth of food in at each meal. I know I need to set a schedule for having meals - it's rough when I'm working and can't always get away to eat. I have to consciously remember to take very small bites and chew, chew, chew otherwise I'm feeling it and I do mean feel it - actually hurts after I swallow. Not drinking with my meals seems to be something I miss very much. I sound like all I'm doing is complaining but this is truly the best decision I've ever made regarding my health. I"m feeling so much better - I'm off my diabetes meds, no more BP meds or IBS meds either. My leg swelling is non-existent and that's a great relief. I plan on reading some of the other post op blogs and picking up tips. My next dr. visit is in February and I know I can call the nutritionist any time I want so I don't feel like I'm out here all alone or anything like that. Thanks for letting me whine - :)

11+ weeks post op

Just wanted to post before going to my doctor's visit tomorrow, I couldn't make the 8 week visit so I had to bump it to now - down 49 pounds as of this morning. I know I'm only half way to my goal right now and I'm going to have to sincerely work at it to continue to lose. I'm going to check with the nutritionist about the portions of everything. I actually had a salad about 10 days ago and it was SO good, but could only eat about 1/2 a cup of lettuce - I hiccup during meals now too. I guess that's common if you eat too quickly, is that right? Deli turkey is not my favorite thing right now, but broiled turkey steaks are wonderful - can't wait for the weather to thaw a bit and we can grill out and doing some exercising outside. I think winter is the worst for dampening my motivation - I'd rather sleep through all of January - March than put up with the cold! More news tomorrow after my appointment.

Within days of 4.5 months post -op

I must have crossed the invisible barrier - stomach healing - and can now eat small portions of most whatever I want. And the best thing, what I want is healthy, lean protein :) I went with my mom to a country cafe - great home cooking served there - I know my limits and cannot do the fried foods that I used to love ,so I had two eggs over easy and wheat toast, I was completely satisfied. I have learned that taking the vitamins and calcium are SO important, the hair loss would be concerning if I didn't have so much hair already. I have dropped 60 pounds since surgery and finally broke down and went shopping since my clothes were falling off of me. I nearly started crying in the dressing room when I had to send the clerk back for smaller size after smaller size. I purchased several pair of pants and within two weeks I had to return two pair that I'd left the tags on because of more weight loss. I've dropped from a size 20 to a size 12 and I'm not to goal yet. Am I loving this, yes I am! Stay encouraged, fellow Sleevers, this is not an easy journey but it is so, so worth it The health benefits outweigh (no pun intended) every thing else, I feel so much healthier than I did five months ago, it's like I'm not even the same person. Have a great weekend, everyone!
Dr. Stanley D. Hoehn

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