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Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Endoscopy Complete.....See Surgeon tomorrow

I saw the Advanced Practice nurse this morning, who was thinking that I might have pancreatitis. I just wanted to laugh at her.  This is not that, this is band related.

She finally called to the soonest she could get me in and Dr Puli was there already doing procedures and he said to send me straight away.  

I had the endoscopy done,  and no ulcers.  However, I have undigested food sitting in my stomach that he said should not have been there.  He says that it appears that my stomach is not emptying and this could be causing problems.  He also said that this could be related to the band.

I am scheduled to see Dr. Marshall again tomorrow morning at 11.  I will discuss the sleeve with him once again.  He is the one who does the procedure laproscopicly and my band surgeon does it open.

I am certain that I want the sleeve if the band must come out.  I do not want bypass.  

I am still in pain and have been vomiting.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Update on Band Dilema

I saw the surgeon a little bit ago, he wants me to have an endoscopy done to see what is happening in my esophagus and stomach.  He believes that the ulcers are back.  He also, talked to me at length to revising to RNY or gastric Bypass.  I do not want to do that I do not think.

I did talk to him about the sleeve, and he has some concerns with leakage with the sleeve and wanted me to be very aware of them.  So, I have some thinking and researching to do it sounds like.

I thank you all for your concern and emails, I will need you now more than ever.  I have been vomiting today, and feel really sick.  The pain in my chest is searing and feels like a hot poker between my breasts, just as Angie had described to me that hers felt like.  The golf ball sensation is also still there.

So another chapter will be written in my journey once the scope is done.  Right now all I know, is I want and need this pain to end, I cannot stand it.

I see the GI Dr in the morning at 10:40 to schedule the scope.  I will keep you updated.

Monday, February 27, 2012

Spoke to Soon!

I spoke to soon, this morning I woke up and had this stabbing pain right smack between my boobs, it has been there all day constant.  No matter how much Maalox I take, or acid pills I chew, it is right there.

I heard back from my surgeons office this afternoon, and after hearing how I am feeling, Dr. Marshall wants to see me tomorrow.  I have an appointment at 1:15.

He is not my Dr., although he did assist in placing my band.  My surgeon is out of town for three weeks I think they said.  So we shall see. He is calling in a prescription for me for protonix.  

I also spoke with my insurance company this morning and they would cover the revision surgery to sleeve.  So that is a relief to me.  I know that I am in horrible pain right now, and that I want this to go away.  If that means I lose the band and gain the sleeve, then so be it.  I will not live with this pain I am in.

Since they unfilled me, I am feeling acid in the back of my throat that I have never felt since being banded.

Time will tell what will happen to my best friend.....I will keep you all posted I promise.

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Day 3 of my unfill and no hunger!!!!!

So it is day three of my total unfill. Can you guess how I am feeling?  I bet you can't.  I have no hunger, not one hunger pang since the unfill.  I cannot explain this, but this is how I felt right after my surgery.  I can tell you that I am not as tight as I have been, and I have not had any issues eating.  You might wonder if I am worried.  The answer is yes, of course.  Will I be able to stick to my measured meals, that all band recipients should adhere to?  Will I not be tempted to have the things that I could not eat when I was so tight, like bread?

The sermon this morning at church by Pastor Joe was about temptation and how we should react to it. I am going to focus on my inner strength that has gotten me this far.  Since I am not hungry, I am going to plan on everything that I put into my mouth.  I am resolved to not just eat it because it might be handy or there.  

I just made my chicken salad for work this week, as I need to stop eating the tomato soup everyday.  I do believe that this is not good for my tummy.  I will try my best to stay away from spicy foods for now.  If this does turn out to be another ulcer then the less spicy the better.  I went yesterday and bought my UNJURY protein powder to get me through. This is by far my favorite protein powder on the market.  It is a high quality medical protein powder used for bariatric surgery patients with huge success.  I know that in a couple of weeks when I get my fill I will be on my liquid diet after, because my surgeon practice is very strict.

After speaking with Angie and Jacquie I feel much more at ease in case something happens that I might lose my band.  I know now that I have other options that I have to look at.  It will not be the end of the world, just a new chapter in my journey.

I feel really good today, and no tummy issues at all today.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

GREAT NEWS....Band Seems Fine!

I had my upper GI yesterday morning at 10:45.  Was a long morning let me tell you.  I went into work at 5am as normal with nothing to eat or drink since 10pm.  So I was really dry.

As the morning pushed onward, my band began to hurt like it does when we are dehydrated.  It just gets really tight in there right at the junction.  I have experienced that pain over the years so I know what it is.   I get it sometimes early in the morning as well. 

Alan went with me as he was worried.  I am glad he was there. I had to drink that yucky barium.  The good news is that my band looks fine. The Dr who did my test said  No dilation of the pouch, and only minimal reflux.  She did say that the esophagus is not rhythmically pushing the food like it should be.  It is like it is out of sync for some reason.  She is not sure if this is why I am having my sensation or not.  She said they see this in people of older age, and she made it clear I am not one of them yet.  I laughed.  She said it is possible that I have ulcers again, but that she could not see them, because with bands they do not use the contrast that shows them.  She advised that if the symptoms do not go away, I should probably be scoped again.

So I guess, I need to calm down a bit, and let my band rest.  She said if there was some dilation or an issue, then the un fill the day before could have resolved it and that it why nothing was  showing up on fluro. So Good News.

I have not heard from the surgeons office yet.  I woke up this morning and the feeling is nearly gone.  It is not there at all for the most part, sometimes I feel it way off in the distance if that makes sense.  So, I am going to stick to liquids and soft foods for awhile just to let it kind of get back to normal in there. I still have restriction as I can feel the water as it goes through the band.  It is not as backed up as it was before the un fill.

I was told in a couple of weeks and I come back in for a refill but that we should go slowly with it, like .5cc's at a time.  I may do 1cc the first time and see not sure yet.

I will tell you that I am NOT hungry since being unfilled.  I have noticed that.  I slept most of yesterday as the barium gave me diarrhea and made me sick at my stomach.

I thank everyone who emailed and called.  I love you all, and Jacquie you are a saint.  I was in fear of losing my band and you all let me know that it would be OK, that if I had to lose it that I have other options like the sleeve.  I feel better this morning.  I am at work for a couple of hours to catch up.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Complete Unfill......Upper GI in the AM!

Well this morning I woke up with the Golf Ball again and it progressively got worse until right after lunch I was actually in pain.  I called the surgeon and they had me come right in, and unfilled my band.

I am scheduled for an Upper GI at 10:30 am.  Nothing to eat or drink after 10pm tonight.

The PA is who saw me, unfilled me.  She told me that it sounds like I might have a pouch dilation.  She said we would wait a couple of weeks allowing the band to rest and then begin a slow refill.  That of course depends on what they see under fluro tomorrow.

I was very upset, and still am.  I do not want to lose my band. I know others have been right here where I am.  So I do not want to whine.  But damnit this sucks.

I am praying that this all works out, and I do not need surgery.  I am very prepared though to do revision to sleeve if the band fails.  I do not want to be without any help in this journey I am on.

Angela or Jen or Jacquie if you read this, or anyone else who has lost their band please contact me as I have so many questions.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

70!!!!!! and my best friend!

I have 70 followers!  I am so surprised and thankful that people actually care what I may have to say about this journey with my band.  I have been through a lot with my band, and she is truly my best friend.  I am constantly reminded how thankful I am to have her.  She has assisted me in losing 144 pounds since being banded 11-9-2007.

She is well on her way to helping me realize my goal!  I have learned that she is my friend and that she speaks to me, and that I must listen to her.

"My Band KNOWS BEST" is my most recent motto!  If I choose to listen to her, she will assist me and help me to not over eat.  If I do not listen to her, I will not drink enough water, and I will eat things that simply slide right through her. She gives me so much information.  She tells me when I have not drank enough, she tells me when I need to not take that next bite.  She tells me when she is having a rough day.  She reminds me that she is right here with me daily.  

All of the things that she does for me are amazing.  I chose to have her as a friend you see.  I actually made the conscience choice to have her.  I owe her so much because of that.  I owe her respect.  I owe her commitment.  I owe her care.  She will pay me back 10 fold if I just follow those rules.

Kristin and Brynn
So, yesterday was the day. 
Brynn arrived weighing  7lbs 8oz, 19.25 inches long.  She is so stinking cute.  (I look like hell but concentrate on her. It has been a really long day for me and my hair it seems. LOL).

So it is back to work today.  Ugghhh I am dreading this day.  Why is it after you take time off it is so hard to get back to work.  Oh well, I have to work so I had better get busy.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Back From gain!

Linda and Nichole
I am back from Chicago and I had a blast.  It was so much fun going downtown on Friday.  Seeing Linda, my very good friend enjoy the atmosphere, when she had not been there since she was in grade school was priceless.  Spending girl time with my beautiful daughter Nichole was wonderful!

I made it to Lush which was my main reason for wanting to go downtown, and also stopped by MAC.  I love MAC have I told you all that.  It is the best cosmetics I have used on my face in I cannot tell you.  I have very sensitive acne prone skin, and this brand does not hurt my face in fact it makes it glow I am told.

I am happy that I did not gain anything while being gone.  This is what I ate while I was gone.  I had a bowl of Tomato Basil Bisque soup with crusted Parmesan chicken at Noodle and Co. for lunch on Friday.  I had three chicken taquitos with guacamole and sour cream for dinner on Friday night at Cheesecake Factory.  I had a Margarita at dinner.  I took a piece of Red Velvet Cheesecake back to the hotel with me and I only ate half the rest went to the trash.  Yes, really!!! LOL.  On Saturday I had four bites of scrambled eggs for breakfast.  I had a Chai Tea from Starbucks the grande size. I ate lunch around 3 and I had a backed potato with cheese, bacon and sour cream and I only ate half.  Dinner on Saturday I was craving Chick Fil A because we do not have one here.  So I had a small chicken nuggets and I ate six of them.  They were soooo good!  Sunday I had a protein bar for breakfast and a carton of skim milk about 60 minutes later.  I did not eat lunch and for dinner I had three cheese raviolis with marinara sauce and I snacked on the drive home Sunday on Sticky Fingers gourmet popcorn.  I also had three bites of a Cinnabon sweet roll.  So all in all it was not horrible but I did eat stuff I normally would not.  I DID NOT GAIN anything while I was gone.  I am very glad about that, I seemed to have just maintained.  

We walked a freaking ton, so I thought I would have lost something, but oh well, I am back in the gym this week.  So will get back in the game.

My very good friend is having her baby this morning by C-Section.  I am so excited for them.  This is their second, and they lost a baby last year.  So Brynn is highly anticipated.  Danielle is like my daughter.  I have worked with her for 5 years.  She calls me her work mom.  I am heading up to the hospital later to meet this little bundle of joy.  I cannot wait.

Cole and Adam
I am glad that I am off today, as I am a bit tired.  It was great seeing the boys, we had a movie night last night and just cuddled.  So wonderful I have to admit.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

It has been a week band became fickle!

It has been a week since the sudden tightness started with my band.  The feeling of something stuck in my throat was the first symptom of this episode.  Since then I went to liquids and spoke with my Dr. and researched on my own what this could be.

I finally decided that it had to be reflux even though I was not feeling any burning or acid in my throat at all.  I had ulcers last year diagnosed under scope and then treated and re scoped to make sure they had healed.  I had begun to have some of those same symptoms.  So I began taking Zantac 150 twice a day last week and really watching my food choices.  I eat tomato basil soup every day for lunch.  The acidity of this choice could be really bothering my tummy.

So now it is really bland foods and soothing ones to my esophagus and stomach.  It is working!  The feeling is subsiding and is almost gone this morning.  I have made a point of having a Chai Tea for breakfast, the hot liquid had helped the tightness in the morning.  I think I had a lot of swelling in there and it is finally subsiding.

I plan on being really careful with the acidity of my food over the next few months.  I want to be make sure this clears up completely.  After speaking with my surgeons nurse on Monday night at support group.  She agreed, but also warned me that if it does not go away, I will probably need a scope again.

I am done with school for the next two weeks, and I am thrilled.  Finals went well, and I am glad to be done with those two classes.  My next quarter will be hell on wheels.  I have my ICD-9 Coding class with lots of homework.  I also will be starting my 4 10 hour days weeks at work again beginning in March.  So I will have a day off during the week and I am looking forward to that.


Nichole and Linda and I are leaving for Chicago in the morning and we are going to do some shopping and attend the jewelry show in Rosemont.  I am excited to have some girl time and down time.  I have not been back in Chicago since BOOBS 2.0.  I am so looking forward to it.  We are staying in the burbs, and will take the Metra into downtown tomorrow and then shop at Woodfield on Saturday.

I have not been working out since the band issue began, just been too tired and stressed.  I know that the exercise would help both of these, but honestly I just was so stressed I could not get there.  That changes today.  I am feeling better, so it is time to get back into the pool.  I bought a new swimsuit as my old one had gotten to BIG!!!!  

I have not been blogging as much and I know I have to make sure that I blog.  I am still getting compliments daily at work on how I look, from people I do not even know.  It really makes me feel good.  I still have 49 pounds to lose, so I cannot stop now, I want to get it all off.  It is so easy to just not work as hard when we begin to get closer to the end.  I know that hard work is the key to band success.  I know that exercise is the so called "SECRET"!  I have also listened to my surgeon who tells me often this is not a race!  Slow and steady weight loss is what will be maintained long term.  

I have been reading your blogs, and commenting on some.  I always read the blogs even if I am not commenting.  I have just been so busy as of late.  No excuse however!

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

New Scale!

Well it is Valentines Day and I really dislike this holiday, it is so commercial and a lot of well earned money is spent on stuff most people do not need.  I think our love should be expressed daily not just on one day of the year!  

Ok, now that I have pissed off the romantics, which by the way I am one for those who are wondering! I will move on.  LOL 

I bought a new scale I have been wanting one, and mine was acting freaky and all over the place, so I got one and I love it.
It gives you BMI and Water Weight percentage as well as weight.

I went to my LapBand support group last night, it was good.  We talked about some of the things that our nutritionist learned when she went to National Conference for the Centers of Excellence which my surgical group is.  We went over band rules and how many of us are still using them, or which ones have we abandoned.  

I have one more final to take.  I did well on my Psych final and now I have Principals of Health Information Management.  This one I have dreaded, and have put it off, I plan on taking it tonight I think, and get it over with.

Only two more work days and I am off for four days.  Off to Chicago on Friday back on Sunday and then Danielle's baby girl "Brynn" will make her appearance on Monday morning at 8am.

I am feeling better, but still tight.  Not as tight as I was, but still pretty restricted.  No pain and just a slight sensation left in my throat.  I am thinking I had swelling for whatever reason, and it is finally beginning to subside.

Spoke with the nurse last night at group, and if my tightness  gets worse or does not go completely away, he may do a scope, she still thinks that something could be blocking my stoma.

Happy Valentines Day Everyone, be safe and kiss someone you love!

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Really Tight still!

I am still real tight, but the lump feeling has subsided for the most part.  For whatever the reason by band has just gotten real tight.  I am able to eat, I am able to drink.  So I am not horribly concerned at this point.

I have never experienced this however, I do not recall eating anything that might even have remotely caused this.  My food journal does not reflect what it could have been either.

I got up yesterday, and I am having lots and lots of gas.  I am not sure why, but my fear at this point is that I could be getting the ulcers again.  So, I will be keeping a close eye on this.

Our new car
Yesterday Alan and I bought a new car.  We got a 2009 Nissan Quest.  It seats seven and makes me so happy that we can take everyone in just one vehicle now.  We love our Nissans as we have a Sentra and an Xterra.

We knew that it was coming to this, that we needed a new car but was not sure when or if we could afford to get one.  We got a great deal that we felt we could not ignore so we got it. We have not had a car payment for over 5 years so this will be a huge adjustment.

I love it, and am so happy.  Soccer will be so much easier now.  I have finished one final and still have one to take and will plan on doing that today.  I want my classes DONE!  My new quarter starts on the 27th.

It has turned wintery cold here finally.  They are predicting it will not stay around though.  It finally actually feels like winter however.

I am thankful for all who commented and tried to offer me advice regarding this episode that I have been experiencing.  I love you all.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Golf Ball Anyone?

So I still have the golf ball feeling in my throat this morning.  I called the surgeons office, because it is stressing me out.  They advised they think I have something stuck.  They advised I use two teaspoons of meat tenderizer in some hot water.  

My papaya enzyme is at home darn it, I will go there at lunch to get it.  This is a horrible feeling and it really has me scared.  Everything has been going fantastic with my band.

My question to anyone reading is, have you ever had the GOLF BALL feeling and if so what was it for you?  How or what did you do to make it subside?

I am not eating any food for awhile, til my band goes back to normal.  I will be certain of that.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Feel like something is stuck in my throat?

Since early this morning, I have felt like something is stuck in my throat, and I want to keep clearing my throat.  It is not like right in my throat it is actually the upper part of my chest where I feel the sensation. When I drink water, it is taking awhile to move threw my band.  I am really worried, I have never had this problem before ever.  I have been tight before such as in the morning and so forth.  I had some chicken for dinner, I only ate about 7 bites.  

I know that this is a sign of swelling, I am not having a problem with my saliva at all, and I was able to eat dinner.  I have no idea why I am so tight all of the sudden.  Nothing has changed that I am aware of.  

If anyone has any ideas, please let me know.  I saw my Dr yesterday and everything has been great!

Dr appointment went great!

I saw Dr. Debord yesterday afternoon, I had not seen him since August.  He was very happy with my progress since my fill.  He said that I am doing all of the right things to stay the course.  75.5 pounds down!!!!!!

Dr. Debord
He talked to me at length about, this is a process, and that it takes time and patience.  He reminded me, that exercise if the "secret key" to long term success with the band.  He said that I have committed to that very well.  He was impressed with my swimming.  He was an All-American swimmer in college and told me that it is the best exercise anyone can do.  He wants me to keep it up.

He also talked to me about my hunger between meals, as I have very good restriction.  He told me since I am only able to eat about 1/2 cup of food at a meal, that he has no problem with me adding a couple of protein snacks during my day.  In fact, he told me that he wants me to be sure that I do.  He advised me with the band, one of the worst things you can do is get overly hungry, then you will make poor choices, and end up either overeating, eating around the band all together, or piecing throughout the day.  I DO NOT need a fill, and he reminded me that being too tight it dangerous!

I do not have to see him again until December and he said he would be happy if I just lost another 20 pounds, and I said LIKE HELL, that would only put me just under 200 pounds, and that is no where near my personal goal.  He smiled and said well, it will make me happy because you will be 100 pounds down then and we will have accomplished what our band procedure set out to do.

I have every intention of meeting his goal and my own by December!  I plan on working very hard all year long to get there, I know that I can do it.

I also spoke to the nutritionist and the nurse who oversees the support groups and they would like me to start leading the LapBand group again.  They were especially interested in my Blogging here, and how that has helped me.  They would like me to do a presentation to the entire Bariatric support group next Monday evening on blogging and it's benefits.

I am proud of my blog, and the support that I get from it.  So I am happy to share this with others who are contemplating or are already on the journey.

I think that is it for now.  Studying is taking up most of my free time for the next 7 days!

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Finals, and shopping trip to Chicago!

Well I have just 5 days left before my finals and 10 days til I take the train to Chicago with Nichole and Linda for two days of shopping and fun in the city.

I am so excited about going back to Chicago as I have not been there since BOOBS 2.0.  I love downtown and it has been unseasonably warm here, so we may get lucky and will have great weather while we are there.  I am keeping my fingers crossed.  Linda has not been there since she was in school for a field trip, so many years ago.  I am anxious to take her.

I was thinking about the Spring and how it is really just around the corner.  It will be so nice to see the sun and see everything getting green again.  I know we have been fortunate this winter, and it has been crazy nice, but I am so ready for warm weather again.  Mostly, so I can get outside and RUN!  Yes, I want to run outdoors with Max so bad.

I have been waiting on my income tax, because I need a new washer and dryer really badly, and I also need a new sofa.  Lord, I just wish one time I could put it in the bank and not touch it...LOL  I have to start looking for some great deals on these items.  I am very picky as is Alan.

My dear work daughter Danielle whose  baby shower I attended and blogged about last weekend, has been put on bed rest and we are anxiously awaiting the birth of her second child a little girl they will call Brynn.  She is scheduled to deliver by C-section on the 20th.

Looking forward to the weekend!

Monday, February 6, 2012

I was carded...Holy Crapola!

Lord it has been awhile since I blogged, forgive me.  I have been busy as I have finals in a week and have been buried.  I have been reading the blogs however.  I got a little turned off by the negativity in blog land for a couple of weeks, so I just pulled back a bit I guess.  

I am happy to announce that on Saturday, I had the best NSV in the world.  I was actually out with my hubby and we had the best dinner.  He had to work all weekend it was guard weekend you see, and so we ended up at Famous Dave's for dinner.  We sat at the bar, and I got carded.  It was a woman bartender, and she politely looked at me and said "can I see your ID please".  Alan looked at me and smiled, and I looked back thinking she was joking and I replied "for real" with a chuckle and she said in her valley girl voice "I am serious".  So I got out the ole ID and handed it to her, she looked at it, and looked at it again, cause you see, my picture is of a VERY FAT me.  I figured she was shocked by the picture, then she said "WOW" you look younger than my mom and you so totally need to update that photo.  I laughed, thanked her and said you made my day sweetie!  I also only ate one rib, and two bitefuls of cole slaw and I was full!  I love this band.

I cannot tell you how long it has been since that happened to me.  It made me feel really good!

Cole at swim lessons

Just Dance 3 for the WII
It has been a busy time for me, the boys both having swim lessons now til the end of April, and I am at the club now 6 days a week.  YEE HAW that makes me happy!  I am also dancing up a storm with Just Dance 3 love it, love it, love it!

I see the surgeon tomorrow, and I am happy to say I will not be asking for another fill as I certainly do not need one.  I have 2 cc's in my 4cc band and I am good.

My new Guess bracelt
Calvin Klein Stretch Jeans 
I went shopping with Nichole and Mom yesterday, and we bought some new costume jewelry, lord I am addicted to it.  LOL  I am finding it so much fun to accessorize I have never done this before.  I always wore the same ole jewelry and earrings for years.  Not any more, I am becoming a fashionista I tell you.  I bought a pair of Calvin Klein stretch jeans, wait, wait for it.....size 14.  NO fricking way did I think that  they would fit me, they did, still snug but hey I know I am nearly there so I got them on sale for 27 dollars!

I had a great time with Mom and Nichole, great day!

I feel so in control again in my life, I cannot begin to tell you.  I am not letting food control me ever again, because I love getting smaller and how it makes me feel inside.