39 Year Old. Gastric Sleeve Single with No Children - Mexico, MX

Hello All, My surgery date is pending depending...

Hello All,

My surgery date is pending depending on a loan. I am 5'4.5" and 211 lbs. I am a former athlete, so weight has never really been an indicator for my size. At 155-161 lbs I wore a size 4/6. So when my weight started to climb. I didn't worry to much as my weight fluctuated frequently depending on a variety of factors. If I lived out of the country, my weight would plummet. When I came back to the U.S., I would sometimes see a 30-40lb weight gain in 3 months. I have been back in the U.S. for three years and my weight has continued to climb.
My family would often make me feel guilty about not eating unhealthy food they cooked. The love with food. So when I am home with family the weight gets crazy. I realize I don't know how to live a healthy life here with my family. I got the shock of my life when I saw a photo of myself. I gain weight in my stomach, back, and face mostly. My face told me things were out of hand. Most of my family moved to another city two years ago. Usually, I can drop the weight easily. However, after a year and a half of trying, I have gained. So, I want to take action before it gets worse. For me, the surgery is a clean slate. Everyone in my family is extremely obese and I know what is waiting for me if I don't act now. Three different types of cancer, diabetes, kidney failure, and more. My siblings are waiting to see how the surgery goes for me. If it goes well they plan to have surgery, too. So this decision has proven to be an opportunity to get my family talking about health. That said, I would be lying if I said my motivation was just health. There are many women who are beautiful regardless of their weight. I envy them. I have about a 10-15lb ceiling about 155 and I actually look like a different person. My face swells like a ball, no cheekbones, no defining features. It sucks. If that weren't the case, I would probably hold off on the surgery until next year.

Gallstones due to weightloss?!

I have been researching like a mad woman for months about gastric sleeve. I just heard something I had never heard before...weight loss often causes gallstones. Apparently, people who lose large amounts of weight rapidly often have to have their gallbladder removed! 23% of bariatric patients have problems with their gallbladder after surgery. Scary. Fortunately, I read that there is a medication you can take to reduce your risks, Actigall. I am going to ask my doctor for a prescription a week or two before I leave. The last thing I want after weight loss surgery is more surgery, lol.

Surgery Date Moved to May 30

Well, it has been a hectic month. I finally got everything settled, paid my deposit, bought my tickets. I had my blood work done yesterday and it all came back fine. My cholesterol was high, but my doctor said the surgery will take care of that. I met with her today to discuss the results and let her know that I was planning to have the surgery. She was very supportive. She has only been in the U.S. a little under 2 years, so she doesn't have the same perspective as other doctors...thankfully. I am ready now. I am trying to figure out if I should get the complication insurance. It will depend on if they cover the cost upfront or if they reimburse. If it is reimbursement it won't likely be worth it. I will post my packing list/photos of the stuff I pack later and let you guys know what I used didn't use and perhaps what I wish I had taken.

I did it May 29

Hello Everyone,

I did it! Don't ask me if it was worth it yet because it is to soon. The first two days were agonizing. Not because of pain, but nausea. I puked, and puked, and puked. I wasn't supposed to have anything other than dry heaves but apparantly I had quite a bit of mucous, gas, and blood. It was nothing to worry about just the most agonizing two days of my life. The other people did not have that reaction, but I am sensitive to anesthesia. I woke and realized that this was serious surgery. I thought what have I done and I did it at the same time. I feel like poked sausage. Swollen with a four poke holes in my stomach. I met wonderful people. I didn't need 90% of what I took, because I was to sick to use it. I used my android tablet, my heating pad, a light-weight robe, my bandages (when I left), Gas-X, and my genpro protein powder when I left (one scoop). Heating pad was the most valuable, I used it when my arm got inflamed from all the injections. I used underclothing. So glad I bought a front closure bra. I forgot my compression socks, but they provided some.
The surgery was at a surgery center. You stay there one night and then move to the recovery house. The surgical center is not American standard, but sufficient. You will have to remind some of the nurses to wear gloves there. The recovery center is at or above American standards. You may want to arrange another night there if you live alone. It was very nice. Josefina one of the nurses is the best nurse I have had around the world. I have traveled a great deal. I wish I could take her home with me. Make sure to tip her well. She had amazing bedside manner. I forgot to tip the cleaning lady. I feel terrible. Also, if your loved one is going remember they cannot stay with you the first night at the surgical center. Stay at Hotel Ticuan. It is affordable luxury. Though your loved one can stay in the recovery house, they will have to sleep in a chair. It may be best for them to visit you and go back to the hotel if they have back or health problems (or can't function without sleep). I forgot to take photos of the center. I was simply to ill. Overall, I do not regret my decision to go. I think it is a great option if you cannot have the surgery in the States. They provided all the medications we needed when we left. I was very pleased. We had blood tests, saw a cardiologist, spoke with the anesthesiologist, got x-rays of our new stomachs, and the recovery house had a doctor on staff. The recovery house had more medications than the surgical center. I was able to get several things to stop my pain, nausea, and gas. They had me up and running in know time.
You have to remember to get up and walk after the surgery to get the anesthesia out of your system and prevent blood clots. You will get blood thinners on the way home and must remember to walk on the plane.

The doctor at the recovery center checked to make sure my bowels were moving and all was good before I left. Overall, I was quite pleased. Make sure to tip your nurses if they are good. I did not get to tip some of my surgical center nurses as I was ill when I left. Sorry if this post is scattered, I am still quite tired and recovering.

Would I choose surgery in Mexico over the U.S. if bother were an option?
I think having surgery where you are at has additional benefits like follow-up. In the U.S. it can take up to four months to get approved for the surgery. You may not have four months. However, it also includes psychological and nutritional support as well as blood panels. Not all insurance will cover this. In my case, it was surgery in Mexico or not at all. For that reason, I am sure i made the right choice. The doctors were experts and very capable. They spoke English and were able to address my concerns. They had good bedside manner, something that is dead in the U.S. Good bedside manner goes along way. I would give the overall experience an 8 out of 10. If all the nurses wore gloves I would have given a 9 out of 10. That is higher than most of my experiences here in the States.

Many of the ladies with me and some of my family members felt I did not need the surgery. However, everyone always says they wish they hadn't waited. The reality is if you have more than 50lbs to lose, you are not likely to do so and if you do you are unlikely to keep it off. If my insurance covered it, I would qualify but they didn't this became my best option to avoid getting more unhealthy.

I had a dream last night...

I dreamed that I was eating fried chicken. That is it. The whole dream was me eating and crunching on fried chicken. I could smell it taste it feel it. It was fried chicken and my mouth eating it. It has been interesting to realize how much head hunger has played a role in my life. Though, I have no appetite at all and struggle to drink anything my mind wonders about different food. I think the first 30 days of this diet is like any other 30 day addiction program it is focused on breaking the cycle of addiction and bad habits that lead to it. I did not get enough water yesterday. I did get in my protein. I am working on a system now. 2oz of water is 1/4 cup. At this stage you can only have 1/4 cup every 15 minutes. I have to drink 2 oz 24 times. That is intense. I am going to put marbles in a bowl or a checklist and check off everytime I drink 2 oz to keep track. I refuse to end up in the hospital after all I went through in the hospital all ready. Drinking is not fun it does not feel good it is still very uncomfortable but better than the other option. Today, I am getting serious about it. I will improve on yesterday as I only got 20 oz of fluid. I have been blending juice/water/gatorade/broth with the Genpro protein in the blender so I am automatically getting both at the same time. I got baby apple juice yesterday. It still has to many carbs (14g) but for now I am more concerned about keeping my fluids up as that is the danger for so many people. I have not weighed myself. I honestly do not care at this moment. I want to heal and get my protein and water straight. I also just want to make it through the clear liquid stage. I am more worried about my health than I am about the weight at the moment. I know the weight will come off. The bigger question is can I stay healthy while it does?

Day 6

Day 6
I am feeling quite low energy today. I took a walk and fell asleep after. It took awhile for it to catch up to me, but it definitely did today. I am still recuperating and have some very swollen areas from the surgery. Lupus means slower healing times for many people. It is hard to say if it will be an issue for me yet. I still have a bit of pain where the IV was, but the swelling is gone.

I still have not weighed myself. I felt the urge to last night but not enough to get out of bed. I don't think I will feel much differently even if I have lost weight since I look the same...maybe worse since my skin looks horrible and my hair is undone, lol. I figure there isn't much I can due but try to follow the rules and stay healthy until I start to look healthier. Can't wait for full liquids where I can eat veggie smoothies. I read you should still cook your veggies slightly as your stomach is still adjusting. I am researching veggies that I can and cannot have now.
Boredom

I was a boredom eater and even though it has taken me up to today to really feel bored. I believe that head hunger stems from that. I live in a very small space so there aren't many places to go in my home and I don't have the energy to take on a full project. I have had several cravings come and go. It is so weird. The head wants to eat, but the body doesn't. I think this process is a good one to go through to weaken the influence of head hunger and boredom eating for me.

I found several support groups that meet in my general vicinity. I am planning to start going. It will be nice to talk to people who understand. My family has gone back to their daily lives since I lived through surgery. Both my brothers are going to have the surgery, but they have lives to live. There are only so many I want chicken conversations they can have, lol.

I took some pics of my bruising and incisions at day six, but of course missing the cord to connect and upload them. Three of the four look great, one seems to have opened due to persistent swelling. However, it is a tenth of the size it was. Earlier it looked like I was pregnant and my baby was curled up to one side. It was likely a complication for the vomiting and laying on one side. Several doctors took a look at it before I left, but said it was just a much bigger version of what usually happens. I was worried it was a hernia, but they assured me it was not. I will see my doctor on Tuesday and she can let me know if additional steps are needed.

I also included a photo of my favorite bandages. I was using bigger versions of the regular band aid, but it was seriously irritating my skin. I have several blood blisters where they were repeatedly applied. The new ones are much better. I also used skin prep to remove and apply bandages. It made taking them off a cinch with little to know skin pulling. Then, you swap the area you will place the new bandages. It protects the skin.

Day 7

I never realized how much of my time food took up. I don't just mean the overeating part. I mean thinking about food, wanting food, trying to add excitement to my life through food. Oh what will I eat tonight? Maybe this fattening thing or this new fattening thing. I am calling a therapist or someone who can help me modify my behavior, because without food...I am bored. It is sad. Food became my full-time hobby. I didn't even realize how bad it was until this surgery. That said, I really want to eat. Head hunger is no fun.

Anyway, I still have a huge knot around one of my incisions, by night it is more swollen and more painful. I have a kneading massage machine and placed it lightly on the area. It worked miracles. The extra pain and swelling are gone. It is still a large knot, but it is smaller and does not hurt as bad after only about 5 minutes. Today, was the first day the incision didn't hurt to the touch so I thought I'd try it. I may do another 5 before bed and in the morning.

I talked to one of my sleeve buddies via text today. She said she moved herself to protein shakes! I am really worried about her decision as not sticking to the prescribed regimen is the number one cause of leaks. She seems confident based on other people's experience, but other people have only done this once. The doctor has seen thousands of patients. I hope it will be alright. In the meantime, I found a Chinese restaurant that sells cheap wanton soup. I strained it and it was delicious. It made me feel a bit more human. I am going to try some other clear soups that can be strained to spice up the next five days. When all is said and done, I will have been on this clear liquid diet for twelve days! I am beyond the halfway point so exciting. I am making a green smoothie as soon as I can. I am sorry if I am talking about food alot, but that is where my head is after 7 days of liquid diet. I can't believe I had this surgery a week ago. I feel very fortunate at this moment, even on the liquid diet. I have wanted to do this so long now it is done. I weighed myself again today, I didn't have much else to do. I dropped another 4 pounds. Thankfully, I go back to work tomorrow. So my focus will be on something more than food and weight. I just keep reminding myself of what it will feel like when I am not avoiding the camera or hiding from people since I have put on so much weight. It will be a huge burden lifted off of me.

I bought my mom chicken lo mein today when I got my wanton soup. It smelled so good. My brain was telling me a noodle wouldn't hurt. I resisted the urge, because if I am compromising at day 7 where will I be in two or three years? This is a life long commitment to make better choices regarding my health and breaking the rules is a bad choice for my health. Like I said though, I underestimated the effects of head hunger and will be seeking out counseling tomorrow. That said, I somehow managed to lose a total of 14lbs. I know keeping my protein and liquid up is helping. My protein intake was not as high as I like it to be today but I got in about 80-90 grams. Well, here is to a successful day tomorrow. In the morning is my official weigh in. I will document that one on my wall with my goal weight, take a picture and post it to my family on Facebook. I will see if I can get the photos up on here. I am armed with regular full carb apple juice for tomorrow's workday so I have enough calories to make it through and have something to burn during my class. My energy has been getting real low. Hasta manana mi amigos.

Day 8

My protein was sufficient but a bit on the low side yesterday. My goal is to boost it today. It is no easy task I might add. I am just going to add it to the fluid I usually don't. I also feel I can easily increase my fluid now. I am headed to work today. I have mixed feelings. I need something to do, but work? Lol. I also woke up with some pain this morning in my feet which I haven't had since presurgery. I will possibly need to take some pain meds to get through. My energy is very low this morning. I am worried. It usually takes until the middle of the day to feel lathargic. I will let the students out early today if I get ill. I'll write Part 2 of this post at the end of the day.

Work
Was short. I had to cut class short as I did not have the handouts because my copy code expired. It was about an hour. I did a great deal of walking. I was very dehydrated. I didn't get any fluids in before class. I know this was a mistake, but I spent the extra hour I always have before class to search for something.

My carbs were way to high today. I had a hard time managing my protein and water and went for the easiest stuff. It is 9pm right now and I am still trying to get my fluid in. I don't see myself finishing before midnight. I went and got wanton soup and strained it. It is low carb and delicious.

Calories 45 Sodium 650 mg
Total Fat 1 g Potassium 0 mg
Saturated 0 g Total Carbs 1 g
Polyunsaturated 0 g Dietary Fiber 0 g
Monounsaturated 0 g Sugars 0 g
Trans 0 g Protein 1 g
Cholesterol 0 mg
Vitamin A 0% Calcium 1%
Vitamin C 0% Iron 2%
*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
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I will be back on track tomorrow. Today, I remembered part of the reason I did this. My niece is coming to stay with me this summer. She is overweight. I want to be able to help her and set a good example. I can't do that if I can't get myself under control. I want us to make healthy meals and healthy choices so she isn't fighting this battle in 30 years. It gives me motivation to start over tomorrow with more commitment.

Can someone please tell me how to upload photos?! Thank you.

Switched to Full Liquids

I switched to full liquids today. I immediately felt human. I was going to make a rice pudding drink then I started to count up the carbs and research rice. It was a no go. I may in the future make it using quinoa and stevia. I had broccoli cheese soup. I blended it with water and a fourth cup almond milk. I did not have the hole can. I will save it for tomorrow. The best part of being on full liquids, is I feel in control of my appetite. I feel like I can now make choices. It is as if a noose around my neck has been removed. I feel like I can make it!! Lol, I am looking forward to pureed foods in the next week or so. Energy has been really low. Now, I feel like I can get the energy necessary to do well. I can look at food and say "Oh, no that wouldn't be a good choice." I think the clear fluid stage is a necessity both mentally and physically. After clear fluids, I feel like I am living in the lap of luxury with a half of cup of soup today. I maintained my normal clear fluids other than the soup. Tomorrow, I will move to healthier smoothies low carb/high protein. I have never been more excited! It's better than Christmas.
One other thing, today after switching to full liquids, I realized I felt victimized by this process. My doctor had me on the clear liquid diet longer than others I heard. I wasn't expecting it and the clear liquids felt like something was being done to me that I didn't want to. Couple that with boredom and the inability to eat it away, I felt like a victim in many ways. Today, I realized I chose this path. There were others, but I chose this one. I want this path. That changed the way I saw this. There are so many people wanting and waiting for this surgery. I was able to get it. It hasn't been perfect, but I got it done. I am going to own it. I am determined to be more fit after 40 than I ever was before. I am going to maximize the opportunity. Now, I have to do things to make my life more enjoyable and interesting that doesn't include eating. I made my mom the rice pudding she loved it. I had clear liquids and a new appreciation.

Rather than sit at home today. I took my mom to the zoo. I bought a zoo pass the day before I left for surgery. We went and got to feed a giraffe. It licked me and made me laugh so hard. We got to get up close and personal with the gorillas who were laying down by the glass. We had so much fun. Then we left and found a few odd stores. We found a park a neighbor told us about a few weeks ago that turned out to be a nature reserve. It is awesome and only six minutes away. I am going to get my bike fixed and ride. I will probably go in the morning to walk it or go fly my drone. It reminded me of who I used to be not many years ago. I never sat around on my behind lamenting life or how bored I was. I would have thought it pathetic since I am an adult responsible for myself. So that is my challenge to myself to find ways to enjoy life, do interesting things, and be interesting. No whining allowed...okay, I may whine on here occasionally. XOXO.

Full Liquid Day 2

I went to the store to update my food. Reality is I have barely incorporated full liquids. However, I have been slipping on my regular fluids. I was a little short yesterday. My head hunger is a million times better though. I think once I got past the clear fluids, I felt like i could actually get what I needed. The difficulty is consuming enough of anything now that I am not stressed out about food. I find I have to force the clear or full liquids, but I am only two days in so hopefully I will get into a good rhythm. My goal tomorrow is going to be to get all my fluid in before 4. Then, I will have the full liquid for dinner so I don't screw up on the fluids.

I did not go to the nature reserve today. I didn't feel like it. I did rent two movies. I haven't done that in a while. I let down my treadmill but only walked a few minutes, my body hurts today. I did quite a bit of walking while shopping and I walk my dog every night. I will be glad when I can do a regular workout or take a Zumba class. I remember what I use to do instead of eating...I worked out. I won't make it through this if I don't work out.

Last night, I had a really weird experience. I took my first ever dose of liquid multivitamins and minerals. It was a horrific feeling. It was not pain. It felt like I swallowed blackness. I felt weird and heavy and like everything was in slow motion. It only lasted a few minutes and when it cleared I felt amazing. Some of the pain I had in my muscles disappeared. Likely, I was malnourished given the liquid diet. I had been taking dissolvable vitamins every other day or trying to. However, it just grosses me out it was so large. I ordered the liquid since I was having difficulty with the dissolving vitamin. Now, I am not sure if I should take it or not. Given the absolute weirdness before the amazing feeling. Today, I had pain in the same muscles, but not as bad. I am clearly having a lupus flare.

Two weeks and 18 lbs

Today, I weighed in at 196! It feels slow. Not the weight loss but the days. I had the worst lupus flare since my first one five years ago. It is the third day, and I can barely walk due to the pain. I have a very high tolerance for pain. So it is a bit disheartening how bad it is. I mostly rested for two days, leaving only when I had to. Today, I had to go to work. It was agonizing, but I was glad to go. In class, I didn't even think of the pain or fatigue until close to the end. However, when I had to walk back to my car. It was unbearable. I was parked so close, but it seems like miles. I walked on the treadmill this morning hoping that warming my feet and body up would help. It did for a second, but not enough to make a difference. All I can do is keep going. Fortunately, it doesn't affect my vital organs. It just affects my joints and muscles. I am sure that I am carrying a few pounds from swelling in these areas. I still have no regrets as I had a flare two days before surgery also that was pretty rough. Unfortunately, it is part of my life now. Hopefully, it will pass quickly as they usually end after a week. The only one that lasted longer was the first one. I was down for several weeks. I hope that won't be the case.

16 days Post-Op and finding local care

Hello Everyone,
I didn't post yesterday as I was in agonizing pain from inflammation due to lupus. I woke up feeling slightly better but by tonight all the pain in my feet was gone. It has been almost a week. I am so excited. My hands still hurt but my feet, oh my feet. I can dance and jump. I am sooooo happy. I have lost 21 lbs and I didn't even care because of all the pain I was in. However, tonight I saw that I looked 20 pounds lighter and I wasn't in the pain and I danced and jumped around like a school girl. I am not back to normal yet, but so much better. Also my doctor referred me to a bariatric and general surgeon who is interested in managing my aftercare. I thought my doctor had abandoned me as she did not want to provide the care, but found someone who could actually help me! I see my counselor on Friday and at least for half a day all is right with the world.

Now, the bad news is I dumped everything i ate today everything made my stomach turn and gave me diarrhea. It started this morning. However, I also had a monthly visitor and it isn't unusual for this to happen even before the sleeve :( Hopefully, will feel better tomorrow. Goodnight all you sleevers and would be sleevers.

Update end of Week 3 (trying to post for the 3rd time)

Okay, it was a rough weight loss week. I wasn't taking off much and I realized I was becoming afraid of eating. I was still on target, but there was fear. I don't even know why! Nothing happened that I didn't expect this week. I am down to 187! Which is great. Yesterday, I found myself experiencing some insane head hunger in the midst of the fear or despite the fear. It wasn't until last night that I realized I wasn't dealing with my emotions. I realized last week that I put the weight on as a way of avoiding my emotions. I shoved down my feelings and put the food on top. I was shocked last week in my first therapy session about all that was going on inside that I was ignoring. I thought I was genuinely happy. Not saying I am not, but saying I wouldn't know because I to busy eating and not feeling. Thank goodness, I did this surgery now, before things got even more out of control! I went to therapy today. My therapist said you have been through alot. It stunned me. I never let myself think about it. My family places a high value on being stoic. It is how you earn respect and for a long time I have been the person with the most respect. I can take it all with a smile and an encouraging word. The words were like weights as I began to take in all I have endured. Things I have never given myself permission to even mention. I still have not let the words in. I can't bear it, yet. I don't want to be a person who has been through alot. I want to be the person from a good close family, a happy family. What I have been through changes how I see things and myself. My whole family is obese and they are in fact...eating their feelings. Following the rules, the code of silence. This surgery helps us with the symptoms by giving us a tool to manage our weight loss. However, if you don't deal with the cause you will repeat. For some people, the causes may be simpler than others. Either way, I encourage you to look beyond the surface of losing the weight so you can become a happy, whole, person. That is easier said than done.

On another note, I tried on some of my goal clothes. It was disappointing as, well, I still look fat. The good news is I no longer feel fat, lol. For many of us fat is both what we are and how we feel. When we say we feel fat, we are often making a statement about how we feel about ourselves and are worth. We often mean we are not valuable or worthy. Sometimes, we think we aren't valuable or worthy of love, kindness, consideration, or been seen and accepted for who we are. I was feeling fat for a very long time, well before I put weight on. I didn't understand that I was saying I was unhappy. So now, as I disappointingly try my goal clothes on and do not look good in them, I realized I don't feel fat. I am okay with people seeing me. I am not trying to disappear and hide not myself and not my real fat, lol. Fat is not a feeling.

Hello, My Name is Naomi and I am obese.

Today, I had a good swift kick in the behind, a reality check. I have been lying to myself and others about my weight and size so long that I didn't realize how big I had gotten. I should say, I refused to acknowledge. I measured my waist today and it was 37". I have been claiming to be a size 14 for sometime. I have gotten away with this for one simple reason, low rise pants. All of my weight is in my upper body. Since the rise in popularity of low-rise pants my lower size has not changed much. Meanwhile up top I had gotten to 2xl. I had many lies that I told myself about my 2xl top. I could not bring myself to accept I had become obese. Today, I confronted that fear and measured my waist and determined the size I was at. I felt a great deal of shock as the reality of the situation hit me about how much weight I had put on. I also realized I have been lying about how long ago I started to put the weight on. My weight has been steadily climbing for years. It would drop when I traveled. Then, I would come home and put on what I lost plus more. Why is this important? Even though I heavily researched this process and know how much weight I need to lose, deep down I didn't see my true weight and size. I thought I was only a little overweight. I really felt after the twenty-five pounds I should be skinny and the rest was just extra. Again, I realize that feelings don't reflect reality. I have over 70lbs to lose total. That is not a little bit of weight. I am trying to be honest as I don't want to end up here again. I let myself get over 70lbs overweight. I am down 28lbs and still have to 41lbs before I am in a healthy zone and 52 for my ideal weight. I remember when I found out I had started to snore. I was so unhappy, I knew it was weight related but would not admit it. I am trying to workout what I will do in the future if I see myself putting on weight. I also realize the importance of a support system. My family is very supportive. However, they are all very overweight and didn't think I was that heavy. It made me feel good, but it wasn't reality. I was still smaller than everyone else, so I felt okay. In public, it was another story. Now, I am looking for people who can be a healthy influence on me. I will be going to support group now that I am in therapy also. Some days it all feels overwhelming. I am trying to take it a step at a time.

Update: End of Week 5

As I introduce solid food this week. I have spent a great deal of time vomiting. It is hard to find a happy medium for this new stomach. In fairness, most of the vomiting isn't from the stomach it is food stuck in my throat that won't go down and I willing upchuck it. I have been very concerned about my calories, but still managed to lose weight so far. I have had lots of mini flares, but nothing that would keep me in bed. I have now lost 33 lbs. My second goal after 30lbs is 35lbs and I am close. I am starting to really look better. I do feel like I need to connect with a support group as it is a little lonely trying to figure out what to do.
I have been walking/jogging on my treadmill several times a week. I think it is helping. Looking forward to full gym workouts later.

Week 7 Update.

Hello All,

I just finished week seven. My weight fluctuated for the last couple of weeks with a gain and a stall. I am now dropping again slowly but I am at 32lbs not the 33 I was a few weeks ago. I am more than okay with that as my body is changing so much without the weight loss. I am now in a size medium top and not the stretchy tops...the blouses. That is crazy to me. I am 182lbs at the moment. I am still hoping to lose 15lbs before I leave for France, but I will be fine if I don't. I will probably lose it there anyway. Despite not losing anymore weight, I continue to shrink. I started exercising last week I walk six hours a week. I would like to up it this week. I am also doing a 30 day plank, pushup, and squat challenge. My niece is here and has lost over 7lbs in two weeks without even trying. We walk, she has three meals a day and unlimited fruits, veggies, and water. She is so happy about eating healthy she doesn't even care about her weight loss. We went home for a visit and her dad was going to buy her a giant Sonic slushee and she asked for water instead! We talked about not drinking your calories because your still hungry and need them for real food. So all is well. The only thing I am unhappy about is that I still have a double chin. I am concerned it is there to stay. It makes me look older. Hopefully the next few pounds will take away the chin. I decided not to join a gym as I am moving in two months and the cancellation policy was really stiff. I didn't want to get stuck paying a year for a gym I only needed for two months. So it is walking, running, and challenges for now. Will find a gym when I move or maybe do a bootcamp when I return from France.

Week 8 Update (Still can't upload pics?!)

Well, it has been an interesting few weeks. I have lost a total of 37lbs and have atleast twenty more and as much as 40lbs more. My feet are feeling so much better even on the days they hurt the pain level is night and day with the weight loss. For this reason, I want to push for an additional 40lbs. Though in terms of size, that may be to small. I had a few stalls and a couple of gains the last few weeks. I knew it was coming. I still continued to lose inches even though my weight was the same. Then, suddenly a six pound drop in the last few days. Yesterday, at work, I went up to a coworker I had not seen in awhile to ask a question. She looked very confused and then shocked. She said she had no idea who I was at first and that I looked like a totally different person. I had no idea what she was talking about, lol. I thought it must be because I am growing my hair out. It took me a moment to remember that I have lost over 30lbs, lol. It was the first time someone noticed my weight loss or atleast said something about it. I was so excited. As I mentioned before, I am significantly thinner than I was at this weight before. I am unsure why. So an additional 40lbs may not be realistic. I don't know what size I will be at that weight and don't want to be to skinny. I live in the South a little meat goes a long way. I do not have any skin to note of yet. It seems like it is beginning to sag slightly. I have noticed a difference in my breast. They are not scary yet. Just not as perky. I am a little worried. I have repeatedly tried to post pics and realize now that the other pics were taken with my serious DSLR. It does not like my pics from the Android tablet. I will try to take some more on my camera and post.

Now for the bad news. The trip to Paris has been postponed. My niece's father/my brother is in the hospital. He is not conscious at the moment and has a long road to recovery ahead of him which will require me to be around and help with the kids. So we are postponing it. I was absolutely heartbroken about all of it: my brother, my niece, my family. I am going through the motions now and it is hard to stay focused at work or think about weight. Thankfully, there is only two more weeks left before I get a break. I have been driving to and from where he is which is about 6 hours away every week sometimes twice a week. I am exhausted. At first, I was eating rather poorly (I wanted to do the Ketogenic Diet). Now, I can barely eat. I have no appetite. I am sure it will pass and is due to stress. As my family back home has a house full of junk. It is hard to stay straight and to keep food that is healthy as teenagers tend to eat what ever is available. Consequently, I have eaten far less than I should and eaten things I shouldn't. I haven't gone crazy, but I am not following the ketogenic meal plans. I also have been missing my protein mark. I have not had a chance to reorder my protein. I am going to do it this week. I realize it is easy to follow the diet when things are going well. Following it when it isn't, however, separates the successes from the failures. I am determined to succeed.

Confessions

It has been a very poor diet week. I got very dehydrated, had days where my calories were to high, and I had too many things that weren't real food. The semester is ending and it is stressful. Add to that, traveling 5-7 hours (each way) to see my brother in the hospital while taking care of his three kids, cooking 2-3 meals a day, caring for my mom, and I am exhausted. It was hard to care what I ate when I felt fortunate enough to find the energy to eat at all. I didn't take my vitamins consistently. I vomited several times and today...today I had diarrhea on an other worldly scale. I have been trying to remind myself that if I can find a way to hold it together when it gets this crazy I will be set. My diet tends to come undone under pressure and I eat to much or not at all. I just need to push and try to hold on.
I was in the process of making the trip back home when the air condition died in 102 temp. I had Gerbers pear chose which was frozen and gatorade that was hot. I mixed them and my body hated it. I was so dehydrated. I consumed a huge amount and I have spent most of the day paying the price for the sugary combo. I have survived it all and made it home safely. I didn't lose any weight over this week. I will find out more tomorrow morning for my official weigh in. However, I realize now I am going to have to plan better. I haven't had time to exercise and I miss it. I need to get back to it as it is a way for me to invest in myself. It looks like I may have to move back to my hometown for a year, which I hate! However, no way my brother can make it without the help. It is stressing me out and that is leading me to return to bad habits. I have been unable to see my therapists as I have the kids and the traveling. So it has been a rough couple of weeks to try to keep on track. I am trying to stay positive. As this is nothing compared to what my brother is going through. I realize how fortunate I am as I have had no complications.

Gettin back on Track

Well, it has been a long couple of weeks since I had surgery. It is hard to believe it has been three months. In some ways, it feels like it never happened like it was a lifetime ago. I have moved cities and I am looking for a job. I don't have all of my belonging yet so I don't have a scale though I am sure I have lost weight since things are fitting differently. It is funny, I dropped so much weight so fast that I thought if I didn't lose anymore I would still be happy. Now that I have been in the same range for sometime, I feel completely different. I really want to take off the last 30lbs. Last I checked, I had last 40lbs and I am a 10/12. I am not quite happy with were I am though I am not nearly as miserable as I was. I think I will look better at an 8. I am shooting for a 6 and trying to drop as much as I can due to problems with my feet.

Tomorrow, I start a fitness boot camp. The kids start school and I will go directly to the gym after then to the hospital to sit with my brother while I job search. I am so nervous about the boot camp. I used to be an athlete...it is so hard to believe. I hoping the boot camp will kick my workout regime into high gear and get me comfortable with more intense workouts. Then, I will move on to the next level of working out. I am hoping to find a pilates class. Pilates helped me get into the best shape of my life before. It is just strength training. I have all the kids signed up for a sport. I want to make sure we are all on the same page of living a healthy life. I have not been cooking everyday like I did when they were at my house. My dad is here and he cooks almost every night. I am so grateful I don't have to do it anymore. It is actually harder to cook in other kitchens than it is your own. The kids will be taking their lunch so we sat down and planned out the menu for the next 6 weeks. Each person is taking a week of lunch prep so we only have to do it once a month. I am actually excited about the upcoming time with them and they have been happy to have me. They do tease me about my calendars and charts, but I tend not to be as organized without them. It is a real nightmare. It helps me keep track of all the different things that have to be done.

I am planning to sign us all up for Jiu Jitsu when I find a job. I read it is one of the most effective calorie burning workouts you can get. I am also thinking about coaching my nieces soccer team...we will see about that one. All-in-all, I am making the best out of a difficult situation and even enjoying some of it. My carbs are still to high and protein just barely makes it most days, others I miss it all together. The new schedule will help me get back on track. At least, I will have some idea how the coming weeks will go now and having the kids in school gives me time to get the things done that I need to for myself. I also found many support groups here for bariatric surgery patients. I am looking forward to joining them.
Mexico General Surgeon

He is an expert at what he does. He is a former trauma surgeon so you are in good hands. I was very pleased with his work.

5 out of 5 stars Overall rating
5 out of 5 stars Doctor's bedside manner
5 out of 5 stars Answered my questions
5 out of 5 stars After care follow-up
4 out of 5 stars Time spent with me
4 out of 5 stars Phone or email responsiveness
4 out of 5 stars Staff professionalism & courtesy
3 out of 5 stars Payment process
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