Week 5 – Banded

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Well, this week is almost over and I forgot to get the blog updated.  It has been a busy week!

I got my first fill!  Another 2cc into the band, causing a bit more restriction.  A day of liquids, a day of pureed, and now I’m on a “normal” diet.  Normal in that the food doesn’t have to be pureed.  Normal in that I see items on my small plate that look like I used to eat, but in smaller portions.  Normal in that I don’t have to get the food processor out!  Yeah!

Friday was my first “normal” diet day – and I had an apple!  I can’t tell you how good it tasted.  I had oatmeal.  I had a sweet potato for dinner.  It had been a while for any of those items.

I have to eat slow, chew well, cut into small pieces, and wait between bites, feeling for any sensations that would say “I’m full” or “this is not feeling great” or “something is stuck” or “I need the bathroom fast” — but none of these has happened for me [yet].

I’m adding in fruits, fresh veggies and starches very slowly.  Bread, rice, beef and asparagus will wait for several weeks before I try them.  I hope to try broccoli, beans, blackberries, this week.  I’m hoping the oatmeal or whole grain cereal will take care of the constipation problem.  Fiber is needed right now, I believe.

Thing is, I start with my protein, then the veggie, and then if there is room, the starch.  The food gets cold by the time I get to it.  Snacks are to be avoided, so the thought of a snack bar or apple snack in the afternoon is not supposed to be on my diet.

I’m losing weight.  Four more pounds since I saw the surgeon three weeks ago.  And I have a new scale which seems to be more accurate than the one I replaced.  By its record, I have lost another 4+ pounds.  I see my primary doctor this week for a follow up and a check on A1C and different vitamin levels.  I like reducing my meds!  It my best measure that I have improved my health.

Of course, knowing I can wear clothing in a smaller size helps, too!  I wore a sweatshirt that I haven’t worn for over 15 years and it felt good.  I needed to dress up a bit for a Photo Exhibit, and found an outfit I had forgotten [because I couldn’t wear it anymore] and it was a bit big on me.  I am shrinking!

I am recovered enough that I need to begin a better exercise program.  The water aerobics is my first choice – I do more when the weight is off my joints.  Today, I walked over 4 miles in Chicago – without pain, without fatigue – and I like it!

I went to a retreat at church last weekend.  Wow!  God’s love was poured out on us.  The worship was so precious.  The teaching seemed to be what I needed to hear.  Great fellowship, encouragement and support from my Christian sisters!  And I resisted all the goodies they brought to munch on.  It helps to know that I could hurt myself or end up in the ER if I ate them, but I really didn’t dwell on the treats.  It is like a grace to be not driven by food obsessions!

Now I have to learn to eat within the diet plan, exercise self-control until the band is fully functioning, enjoy a slimmer, healthier life and get more active!  [Note:  it may take several visits, once each month, to have adjustments before the optimum restriction is reached.  Too much, too fast and I can’t eat at all.  Too little, too slowly and I don’t loose weight.  the band is a tool, but it has to be adjusted to reach its full use.]

I made it through the 4-6 weeks of pureed foods.  THAT is an accomplishment!  I made it through the recovery from surgery.  I’ve lost weight and continue to do so.  I’d say I’m on my way to a size 12!

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Week 4 – Post Surgery

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I saw my family doctor this week- he’s happy with my progress. He cut my blood pressure med in half! Yes! This is the main reason for getting the surgery- health. I’m still loosing weight and eating about 700 calories a day and not hungry. I feel as if the obsession with food is on hold- I don’t think about it very much and this pureed diet forces food to be “functional” and nutritional.

I went for prayer Sunday- for the pain and to draw closer to God. When I went fir a walk later that day, there was no pain at the port incision for the first time! I spent time resting with God Sunday in His ‘arms of love.’ It was a precious time.

Today I fell asleep after breakfast for two hours! I must have been tired I guess.

Tomorrow I’m having a manicure and pedicure- just to pamper myself.

Week 3 – Post Surgery

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I’m starting to feel more “normal” – the allergic reaction is gone; there are no more symptoms of UTI; the pain is much less at the incisions; I’m walking 30 minutes without a problem; and I slept last night!  Hooray!

I’m also not hungry, nor do I think of food all the time.  I don’t expect this to last – that is what Lap-Band adjustments are for.  But right now, it is a good place to be.  I’m also not so naive to think all my problems and issues are “gone” – just hidden for a bit while my body heals.

I’m up to 3 oz. of protein [last night poached salmon – yum!] and 1/2 cup of veggies.  I have 1/2 cup of fruit once or twice a day.  Yesterday I had about 750 calories of food.  That doesn’t seem a lot to my mind and experience, but was very satisfying for me yesterday.

Today my job is to find one piece of paper from 2010 that the IRS needs.  Now that is a challenge!  My filing is WAY behind and what should be an easy task is made hard by my procrastination.  No, I do not like filing.  I sort and box and hope I don’t have to hunt for that one piece of paper, but it has come down to the necessity.

It’s actually hard for me to think about my relationship to food right now.  There are so many foods that I just can’t have right now, physically, while I heal.  Fortunately, they don’t even seem appetizing.  Others who had surgery around the same time as me tell a different story.  So why is it different for me?  I have no idea.  It may be that the allergic reaction and infection have delayed the issue for me and I am “behind” on recovery.  In the mean time, I will enjoy this reprieve from my food issues and go one day by day, eating what is nutritionally required and not obsessing over what I cannot have.

Sigh.  A good place to be.  It has to be the Lord – I can’t see any other solution!

More Week 2 after surgery

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I’m still on Benedryl for the allergic reaction, so no driving yet. But I am going to church today! Yeah!

I went back to my records to get a grip on weight loss. In February, I began a Wellness class and that’s where I’m starting from. I lost 25 pounds in the next seven months. On the Pre-op diet I lost 7 pounds in 2 weeks. Since surgery, I’ve lost 10 pounds. Whew! That’s 42 pounds this year. Yeah!

I can tell it in my clothes. Right now I’m enjoying the loose, baggy clothes as I recover from surgery. I’m reluctant to spend money on new clothes, but as I heal I know I will not like overly loose clothes so I’ll probably be getting some “transition” clothes.

Grace, patience and endurance is what I need as I learn to make the band work. Only by the grace of God!