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I'm writing a LAP BAND BOOK!!!


Tuesday, March 31, 2009

3/31/09 UPDATES: Track, Pipes, LB

OK, some updates for anyone who cares…

TRACK: From my whinefest yesterday: Just as I was pulling on my long-johns yesterday for the 4 hour freezefest I got a call from DS2 saying it was cancelled as the other track team felt it was too cold (OK, someone agreed with me). Apparently it was NOT too cold for our team. Our coaches made the kids practice outside for 2 hours anyway and then they scheduled an impromptu away meet today. OK, I had already rescheduled Monday’s guitar lesson to Tuesday (and paid for it)…you know, from the day OF the meet to the day of NO meet. He’s not going to the meet (and he’s fine with it…half the kids won’t be there as they have a chorus event)…apparently I wasn’t done whining yet.

PIPES: Cover your ears NOW if you don’t want to hear about my pipes/dia-pee issues. I’m living on the edge over here. I ‘borrowed’ some of DD’s thin little girlie almost-thong-sized mini-pads. I feel like a man who’s been surgically castrated…there’s something missing between my legs. I’m thinking my new trial pack of drugs might be working pretty well. If this keeps up I’m going back downtown to my dealer for a refill. These pads are so thin you can see through them, but I’m a risk taker (and I have nowhere to go today…oh yeah, the guitar lesson). I’ve just started measuring my water intake and pushing fluids for post-op (I’m the queen of good timing). We may have a repeat of the ‘big flood’ of ’05. That’s when I had to call (from the bathroom) for DS2 (he was the only one home) to run and bring me some towels and a pad…that’s when I scheduled my bladder surgery and took out stock in Poise…and when DS2 dubbed pads ‘dia-pees’. Yes, I continue to scar my kids for life…and what was I saying yesterday about parents embarrassing their teens? Actually we were both laughing hysterically at the time, and every once in awhile he still loves to tease me about it and laughingly whisper to me that he’s going to tell everyone (so don’t tell him I’ve already told the world…shh, it’s our little secret). That’s when I pull out my tube top threat or bribe him with treats…we have a wonderful relationship…it’s all based on secrets, threats and bribery…I’m a good mom that way. So far, so good,

LAP-BAND: I still can’t get the ‘Insurance Specialist’ at my surgeon’s office to call me back. Love the woman when I talk to her, but if she's that busy (which I'm guessing is true) they need to get her an assistant. I started calling her last Monday (8 days ago) and every day since then. I left a fourth message on her voicemail today asking for a 5 min. meeting with her on Wednesday morning so I can bring my last papers in and GET A TENTATIVE DATE (and I told her I was going to call the surgeon’s Admin. Asst., Susan). I just called Susan and nicely asked if Patti’s been out…nope, so I told her my issues and asked if I could just come down tomorrow, nope, no welcome-mat, I have to talk to the ins. gal. OK, HOW can I do that? She apologized and took a message for me. I’ve now risked pissing off the ONLY person who can help me get approved or not, which I certainly didn’t want to do, but that shows you how much pressure I’m getting to set a date (I'm sure my ears will be burning/ringing soon). I think the world will probably implode if I don’t get this done on Wednesday…so if you hear the BIG BANG, run for cover. Here comes the ‘yadda-yadda-yadda’ *just keep saying this in your mind as you scan the rest of this as quickly as possible until you get to WHEW while I release a quick (well, that depends on how fast you can scan) bit of pressure off the cooker*…I’m not telling anyone but DH, so I don’t want to be on the pre-op diet and traveling to my family for Easter. I’ve been avoiding calling my Mom (who had foot surgery last week and I haven’t talked to since…it’s killing me) because she’s been bugging me to come there (Ohio) for Easter and she needs to get the house ready, Easter baskets ready (yes, I always tell her I’ll do them, she won’t have that) and did I mention she just had surgery? DD calls me daily to see if we’re going for Easter because she wants to bring the BF and he needs to plan and she needs to ask off work and talk to his Mom about leaving…I’m all out of excuses. DH is getting big pressure from work (in the throes of layoffs there) to schedule several more work trips in April (he just called me a min. ago to ask AGAIN "Do you think you'll get a date tomorrow?", and DS1 still hasn’t taken Easter weekend off work yet, so who knows if he’ll be able to at this point. We’ve also got several kid doctors’ appts. scheduled that Friday that will need to be rescheduled, but within a few days as they’re time sensitive visits…the closer we get the less likely I’ll be able to do this. I’m being pressured from EVERYONE! *WHEW* So, I’ll either be back here ranting or doing the happy dance tomorrow…coin toss now! I’m really not impatient to get surgery ASAP...I really don't care if it's in May at this point; I just need to know WHEN it might be!

Monday, March 30, 2009

3/30/09 Out Like A Lion

OK, I realize it’s not quite the end of March but come on!!! Snow??!!! I’m in Pittsburgh, not flippin’ Fargo!!! (Ooops, sorry Fargo, I just heard on the news you’re having flooding, best wishes to Fargo). There’s snow flurries coming down and the wind is howling so fast that the wind chill is Frickincoldashell. I’m officially on strike until Spring shows up…I’m hibernating inside until it gets warmer…I’m so DONE with you Winter! Winter has forced me into being a bad mother. Let me preface this by saying we’re good parents, we go to everything the kids want us to. I was even Homeroom Mom (and full-time bulletin board/teacher’s helper) every year for all three of my kids until it ended at Middle School. Hey I was an Art Teacher and we did awesome fun stuff…the teachers were fighting over getting my kids into their class the next year…my kids were proud…until they became teens, at which point parents are embarrassing. We even go to most of the things the kids don’t want us to…that’s when we get.. ‘But nobody else’s parents are coming!’…OK, I listened when it came to the Middle School Dance chaperones…I let some other mom (who wants to be ‘friends’ with her teen) embarrass their teen (bet she hit the dance floor!). My standard response now when they say I’ve embarrassed them over something little is ‘Embarrassed?!! You’d better watch it or I’m going to show up at one of your dances in my sequin tube top!' (got that one from my teacher sis) that always gets them. There’s a point in High School though where you become less embarrassing again, either that or they learn to tolerate the embarrassment…DS1, age 18, now doesn’t whine when I chat with his friends as long as I don’t hang out long, don’t show naked baby photos, and I’m feeding them well as they’re over playing poker, Guitar Hero, or video games…they actually started playing the board game Risk lately (how old school!).

DS2 has another (weekly) Track Meet tonight and I asked him if he cared if I just came to pick him up at the end…he grumbled OK, but I think he cared. I really think he was picturing that he might be the last kid picked up…no kid likes that, I was one of 5 kids with a busy Mom, so I remember the feeling and I try really hard to avoid that. The problem is it’s hard to predict when athletic events like this are going to end…I might as well be predicting the stock market…yes, I loaned him my cell phone, but will he call me in time to get there (the school is a ½ hour away)….no chance! There’s always ‘We can’t take a phone on the field so it was up in the bleachers and the coach wanted me to stay down there between events to warm up, so I couldn’t call you, but WHY were you late?!!!” Who does he think I am, Carmac the Magician?

I don’t think he’s ever been the last kid picked up. And doesn’t he remember that I’m the same Mom who got one of two speeding tickets in my life because both boys were playing soccer games in two different locations and his soccer game ran overtime? Heck, he was in the car as the lights were flashing behind us and I didn’t pull right over, but made the police car follow me the extra thousand feet into the park where I pulled up right in front of the coach and DS1’s soccer team…TEAM you hear me?!...I was still one of the first Mom’s there! OK, so it turned out to be the school DARE officer (nice lady who wrote down less mph than I really was going, thank you) so all the kids knew her and DS1 will never let me forget how badly I embarrassed him…but if you’re a Mom who’s ever been late and you get that panicked/heart in your throat feeling as you’re driving and don't know if your kid is safe, then you know what I mean (you younger moms probably buy your tots cell phones so you’ll never have this problem). Now I wonder why teens say parents are embarrassing?

Why is it that teens sometimes don’t want you to show up at anything, sometimes want you not even to exist if they're with friends? I swear there’s moments they’d like me to be invisible when I’m driving them and their friends places….and God help me if I talk too much in the car to their friends…I’ll hear about it later!...Mom! Why do you always have to laugh and talk to my friends so much?!...and yet if it involves sitting in the cold to watch them run for 1, 2, and 5 min. (events) out of a THREE-FOUR HOUR Track Meet, yes, then they want you there. I may go to the last hour since two of his events (they can only be in three) are always at the end…I’ll see how cold it is then. I’m a bad Mother, I know! Sitting in those elevated bleachers so the wind smacks you in the face as it whips across the field while your fat butt, that you thought was oh-so-very-insulated goes numb from sitting on those cold metal benches, for any longer than I have to does not sound fun today. And hey, I may be going to my pre-op class this week (toes crossed) and these weak asthmatic lungs don’t need bronchitis or pneumonia for the seventh time right before surgery…….you’re not buying my plea for sympathy are you? But it’s SO COLD! I'm sounding like a whining teen aren't I? Nuff said.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

3/29/09 New Weight Loss Trials

*Post Deleted for Lap Band Book

Friday, March 27, 2009

3/27/09 Do you measure up?

*Pics not here were of measuing tape belts.

Does the sight of this lovelly belt send shivers down your spine? But it says 'You can add extra holes.' And look, I think it goes ALL the way out to 15"! Thinspiration?

And for my metric friends, they have your size too...

Hey, why stop there...let's place it around the hips!

Quiz: What's the scariest part of this picture?
A. The tape measure belt?
B. The fact that this person has no belly button? (I'm guessing tummy tuck and they didn't want to pay the extra moohla for a new button?)

The "Anna Rexia" costume with a tape measure belt...that's just so wrong!

Now MAYBE once my pants are this baggy and if I don't have a buckle...

And for my friends in our Bunny Bandsters April group...

OK, I could totally wear this bracelet. My wrists are tiny...but that's the only thing on me that is!

What's next...shoes with digital scale displays ontop?!!

Thursday, March 26, 2009

3/26/09 Pipe Dreams

WARNING- If you don’t want to hear more about my incontinence problems…STOP READING…NO, REALLY…I’m going to pee on you!!…Alright, you’ve been warned. If you haven’t heard about my past issues I’ll sum it up by saying having three kids did my body in…I didn’t have migraines or osteoarthritis and I certainly wasn’t obese or incontinent until I had children. It’s all their fault…not buying it are you? Well, the incontinence IS probably from childbirth…that and genetics, Mom has had two incontinence surgeries (she’s had 5 kids), one of my sisters is on “urgency/bladder” pills (she’s had 4 kids), and DD, yes my 21 year old DD just started the same medication this year (no kids yet…she’s doomed…but that’s our secret…k? I want to be a Grammy someday!). Three and a half years ago I got fed up…it was just before I got diagnosed with adult-onset asthma…extreme coughing and incontinence together…it’s not a pretty thing.

So I swallowed my pride and brought it up at my annual OBGYN exam. Before I knew it I was tested, retested, scheduled, and in for surgeries…not one, but two…a hysterectomy and a bladder sling (both solely for incontinence) back to back with two different surgery crews. The surgeries worked!...I was even contemplating buying some cute underwear, maybe even a thong, now that I was sans mega-pad! Fail! Yep, starting just a few weeks out, and before the next year I was back in my mega pads…DS2 calls them ‘dia-pees’…lovely…and no, I’m not in diapers, yet…groan. My coughing/sneezing/laughing pee problem stayed cured, but getting to the potty in time…I’m like a 2 year old starting potty training (lots of running with clothes flying off...good thing I'm now at home and 10 steps from a bathroom at all times)! After another 2 years I got up the courage to go back to my Urologist for more fun testing (read "Urodynamics" and "Glamour Shots" blogs if you haven’t had enough already), let’s just say he was baffled as I’m the only patient he’s had that the surgery has failed…don’t I feel special…yep, I’m a mystery. So he sent me to another Urology Specialist.

I had to wait four months to get in (I took that as a good sign that she must be magical), but today was finally my day! Whoo-hoo…I was expecting more Urodynamics and maybe some new fun testing. The nurse brought me in and asked me about a million questions…some that got me thinking about what testing might be in store for me; things like… ‘Have you ever had your Urethra dilated?’ I have no clue what that means but it sure sounds painful and visuals of balloons up my hoo-ha were forming!! I, of course, divulged that I would be having Lap Band surgery next month (just in case they couldn’t get all their testing in by then). (*Side note here: After exclaiming ‘You don’t look like you would need WLS!’, she spent the next 5 min. asking me all about it). I gave my usual lemonade sample and waited on the table…in came the doc and I told her the same story/issues I’ve been having…she gives me a puzzled look…I’m thinking, here we go again…but then…wait for it… ‘Did your Urologist put you on medicines?’ Me ‘Nope. I know there’s stress and urgency incontinence, but he always said I only have the stress kind and meds wouldn’t help me.’ More frowning…I’m thinking the testing list is getting longer… ‘You DO realize the surgery doesn’t cure any of the urgency problems you’re still having?’ Say WHAT?!!! After that I believe there was some diagram drawing and discussion of the different causes of incontinence, but my head was spinning. Stirrups up and a quick exam and I was given some pills to try out…ARE YOU TELLING ME THE LAST THREE YEARS I COULD HAVE BEEN TAKING A SIMPLE PILL FOR THIS??!!
I’m on VESIcare (Yep, I'm now one of those annoying pipe people with leaky pipes, faulty internal plumbing, and drippy spigot- genitalia until I get my pill...maybe I need a gauge) and I ‘should notice results immediately, or there’s about 5 other pills we can try!’ (so I might be one of those 'gotta go, gotta go, gotta go RIGHT NOW' peeps). She wants me to go in for a bladder and kidney ultrasound, just because I’ve never had one, but that’s it….NO MORE TESTING! WOOT! Thongs may be in my future yet…maybe when I get a skinny ass.

If this works I'm so buying my new Fairy Godmother one of these lovely note holders (Vescare pipe person pic)...hey, I'm appreciative...and look...oooo shiny!

The rest of our time was spent chatting about the LAP-BAND®, obesity, my family history…yadda yadda…we got along famously. I got the obligatory “You don’t look like you need WLS!” about 3 times out of the doc…another nurse came in for my exam and the first thing the doc said was “She’s having Lap Band surgery!” Nurse “You don’t look like you need WLS!!” Other than DH the only people I’ve told (besides all the WLS docs and pre-op docs) are 4 other doctors and 5 nurses now…and I get the same initial words every time (I must be an expert fat camouflager).

They went on and on and I had to justify why I was doing it, my years of yo-yoing, my BMI, and my family history of terrible comorbidities I’m facing. The nurse even asked me how much I wanted to lose…I said I’d be really happy with 80-100 pounds, but I would be happy if I could lose 60-80 and KEEP IT OFF. Her reaction… ‘Well, you could diet and try to lose that!!’ Hadn’t she just heard my history?... ‘Well, I HAVE lost almost that much before, many times…I need something to help me KEEP it off and help me not feel like I’m starving.’ They just couldn’t get over that I would need WLS…it was a very friendly conversation but it got to the point after about 10 min. of this (as I was sitting with ‘the sheet’ over my lap) that I finally laughed and yelled ‘OK, I’m a lot skinnier on my top half than the bottom half…just take a look at my fat ass when I walk out!’…I was NOT getting my naked butt off the table to prove my point…interesting that they were gathered in the hall as I changed and walked out. My follow-up is in August…I’ll show them! I’ve got to say every time this happens, I’m not embarrassed, or upset, it’s just exhausting to try and justify why I need this and I don’t think I’ve convinced one person yet that I need this…and they’re all doctors and nurses who have heard my health issues and the family ones I’m facing…HOLY C*@P, if I can’t convince someone in the medical profession I need this, I’m SO glad I’m not telling others!!!

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

3/25/09 Get Your Head In The Game

*Post Deleted for Lap Band Book

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

3/24/09 Long Weekend

I had a busy long weekend...I remember when 'long weekend' meant I was taking a day or two off of work and relaxing or going somewhere fun...preferably somewhere with a cabana boy to bring me a drink...ahhh, no-longer. DH was out traveling again the end of last week. I picked up DD from college late on Thursday night for her job interview here on Monday, and we loaded some of her things to come home, so we got home really late. Friday we (DD and I- DH plane didn’t get back until really late) attended DS1’s first track meet and then I took the kids + DD’s BF out to dinner for a treat…I ordered the filet/salad and brought ½ of it home…don’t applaud yet…it came with a rich blue cheese crust topping on the meat and I ordered a margarita…sigh…that was just the beginning of my 'feast', but more about that tomorrow. We ran the kids around to all their stuff/lessons (guitar, work, CCD, etc.) over the weekend and spent a lot of time with DD working on filling out her interview information sheets (what year did I start work at...) and interview skills. DS1 started to get sick on Sunday, high fever/throat…into the doc on Monday and he does have Strep Throat (I’ve been washing my hands a million times…I’m hopefully about a week out from my pre-op class so I don’t want to get sick now!).

DD had her interview Monday morning and we got her back to school late last night. The good news is she just got a voice mail from the interviewer while she was in class saying she had some ‘good news’ for her…here’s hoping! It’s far from her dream job (sales for the admissions dept. of a group of colleges, so she’d be answering phone inquires/sales quotas...she could get a potato to talk), it’s not a lot of money, but it has good benefits, free tuition if you want to take classes (online ones too, so she could gain some extra skills for her resume), it’s mainly recent college grads working the same job, so it’s a great atmosphere for her, and it’s a job…in this economy that’s certainly something! She interviewed with five other people (their business is growing with the economy and people trying to get degrees for the tight job market so they’re hiring several people over the next month or two). Two of the five were ‘grey haired men’ (she said...I'm sure they were younger than me), the rest were recent graduates like her. She couldn’t get over why men their age would even want a starter job like this and how she felt sensitive talking about how she/others were just starting out when these men had probably (guessing) just lost other jobs (She said if the company is smart they’ll hire them, as I’m sure a huge segment of those looking to go back to school part-time even are their age…very true). I know it made her appreciate the interview and the possibility of having any job even more.

She was in a senior level class last week at college and the professor asked them to raise their hand if they had found a job yet…not one hand went up…almost all her friends are staying for graduate school as they can’t find work.

I just got the call back…she got the job! Hooray!!! She’s so excited!!! She'll continue looking for a better job, but is totally thrilled that she’ll have this one to go to in June (if I find nothing better...keep the optimism). I’m thrilled it’s in this city, so we can help her get herself started as she’ll be living at home for a little while and she can save up that way (she was talking about the possibility of continuing part-time work as a waitress somewhere here too). She’s been looking all over the country (wants to work in a major city, dream job would be marketing in advertising), so I was a little worried it would be hard to start out in a new city, new job, try to find roommates somewhere new, find apartments and all that. I’m pretty sure she’ll still be moving away in the future to a bigger city/better job, and I want her to follow her dreams, but I’m thankful that I’ll have her around a little while longer..a nice ending to my 'long weekend'!

Now…add ‘help her find a car she can afford’ quick while she’s away finishing school/big projects to my ‘April list of things to do’…oh…AND that Lap Band thing!

Saturday, March 21, 2009

3/21/09 Weight Loss 'Tools'

*Sorry, no pics

Our great-grandmothers, grandmothers, and mothers were on to something...they were using 'tools' for weight loss long before the era of 10,000 diets became popular. Too bad their 'tools' weren't as successful as the LB!

GOT CANKLES?
Newspaper clipping from 1924. I'll bet these were comfortable, and gee 'there's nothing to rub in or massage'. I wonder if blue feet were popular then? *Clear plastic band over the ankle

A DAY AT THE SPA SOUND GOOD?
This photo from the 1960s shows French women sitting in "slim-down coveralls" while being served low-calorie meals.

The attached text reads: "10 May 1961, Paris, France --- Weighting Game. Paris: Shedding pounds while getting new hairdos, Parisian girls relax in slim-down coveralls underneath the hair driers at a local beauty parlor. In addition to the coveralls, customers get low-calorie meals to help with their slenderizing. Idea was originated by Parisian hairdressers Roger Pasquier".

NEED TO GET RID OF FAT AND CELLULITE?
This just looks painful! The device was made by Battle Creek Equipment in Michigan, US. You sit front, back or side and the rollers 'break down' fat. *spinning rollers

LIKE YOUR MARTINI SHAKEN, NOT STIRRED?
Now THIS looks like a fun 'banding' experience! I hope my support group meetings are this fun! *Band machine that jiggles your fat

WANT A 15" WAIST?
Frankly Rhett, I don't give a d#*n! ...Scarlett O'Hara (Vivien Leigh) being laced into her corset by her Mammy (Hattie McDaniel) in Gone with the Wind, 1939.

Friday, March 20, 2009

3/20/09 Spring Has Sprung!

7:44am EST…it’s official…Spring is HERE! Spring officially starts when the Sun strikes the Vernal Equinox, i.e., the time when the Sun strikes the Celestial Equator at 0Âș 0' 0"S declination for the Northern Hemisphere. Yes, I did the countdown…and it was more fun than New Year’s! We’re having record low’s today (of course); 26° right now and light snow flurries are coming down, but it’s all good. Even Mother Nature can’t keep Spring from arriving.

Yesterday we noticed our first crocuses blooming out front. They're in the flower beds at this house, but at my last house I planted them all through the front lawn (they die off before the first mowing). Yes, my neighbors thought I was nuts...I've wondered what the family that bought that house thought their first Spring there.

I'll encourage you all to start a veggie garden this year, especially with the recession going on. Even if you have no 'plot' you can plant a tomato in a pot.
Tomato Tips:
-The tomato is a vine...give it a stick, deck rail, or something else you can attach the main stems to as it grows, and fertilize every month.
-Buy a plant then bury 1/4-1/3 of the stem when you plant it (pinch the leaves off the buried part)...the stem will grow more roots and you'll have a really healthy plant.
-Tomatoes get 'sucker shoots'. As the plant grows look where the branches attach to the main stem. In that 'crook' you'll see a baby stem starting to grow...pinch it off and you'll get healthier branches and more tomatoes.
-Tomatoes like even, deep watering. ie. it's better to do one long heavy watering every other day and let it dry between than to water lightly 'willy-nilly' or flood it all the time (the roots will grow deeper looking for water=healthier plant, and you won't get tomato rot-black spots on the bottom).

Add some lettuce seeds (easy from seed, fast growing, pick leaves from the outside of the plant as you need them, replant a new batch as you use them up or they start to send up a flower shoot-leaves get bitter then) and onion starts (look for them in the veggie plant section- they look like a bundle of almost dead green onions-below) in the pot around the base and you've got salad all summer!

WELCOME Spring!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

3/19/09 Party Hopping, shopping, mopping...never stopping...finally popping!

Yep, April will be my month this year. I’m sure it will all be a blurrrr.r.r.r.r..r..r..r.

I’m party planning today. I’ve got to get moving on this as we’re all graduating soon…Me, to a new life with the Lap Band hopefully near the middle of April; DD from college May 3, and DS1 from H.S. June 5. In between all these is DS1's 19th birthday, and DH and my 27th Anniversary, and did I mention my 50th birthday and DH’s 50th birthday the day after, but we were actually born on the SAME day…'HOW’s that?'

Glad you asked! …I’m letting you ponder it a minute……
TIME’s UP! DH was born on an U.S. Army base in Japan…so his Mom actually gave birth on the other side of the world 2 hours earlier than mine (time zones and all that)…cool huh? DH loves to say that he married an older woman…I just smile and nod…yep, I’m a…what’aya call it…cougar…I’m not about to explain that he’s actually 2 hours older.

I’m thinking we’ll be keeping the Anniversary and the Birthday’s low key this year as, according to some, I may be sipping broth and sleeping in a recliner still post-surgery. If so, it will still be the best birthday ever! So mainly I’m planning the older 2 kids graduations. I’m sending out emails today and making lots of lists (being my usual anal OCD-tendency self) about all the things that I need to do. Lordy, the outside work alone will take me several weeks…I hope it warms up soon! Time to fly.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

3/18/09 The Perfect Storm

*Post Deleted for Lap Band Book

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

3/17/09 Irish Eyes Are Smiling

*Sorry, pics are gone.

The Irish say Everyone has a wee bit of Irish in them on St. Patrick’s Day. So being a wee bit Irish today I set off to find out about everything Irish.

Even the Obama’s are Irish today. Michelle and her leprechauns dyed the White House fountains green today. Pittsburgh's own Dan Rooney (owner of the Pittsburgh Steelers) was named Ambassador to Ireland today.

It’s all about this guy…*St. Patrick

If you don’t wear green you’ll get pinched by everyone but your boss (sexual harassment and all that). I sent both of my boys off to school without reminding them…no green….BWhaahaahaahaaha (evil laugh). Hey, teenage boys getting pinched by the girls…I think I did them a favor. If you tell people you're Irish they have to kiss you...keep breathmints on hand.

Of course, they eat potatoes and corned beef, but they also eat some of this today…I don’t even want to know…haggis…

They drink a LOT of this today. This pic is of Guiness beer, but it looks the same as Irish coffee with clotted cream on top…to the Irish, it really doesn’t matter as long as it has alcohol in it…and after awhile the pub bartenders can serve either and no one knows the difference…it’s all good…

After a few drinks they run around looking for their Pot-O-Gold… *port-o-potty

…or if the line at the Port-O-Pot-O-Gold is too long they use this one… *leprechaun pot

Then they dance the Irish jig…and apparently if done fast enough you'll eventually levitate through the air…

Then they fall down into the grass and look for these… *4 leaf clover

And if they're really lucky, they'll catch one of these guys...probably passed out right next to them... *leprechun

A toast to you on St. Patty's Day....

For each petal on the shamrock
This brings a wish your way.
Good health, good luck, and happiness
For each and every day.

Slainté! (health)

3/16/09 Carbs a la mode!

One thing about tracking your calories and nutrition...you find out what you're really eating...in my case, carbs. My little daily nutrition pie charts that pop up on FitDay have been showing one huge pink piece of carb pie! Now, I wish that pie chart would carve a huge hunk off for complex carbohydrates...not all carbs are bad after all. What about that apple I snacked on this afternoon? How about that steamed asparagus I ate at dinner? I can't help it though, I see that giant pink pie piece and I see STARCH! It's all those times I did so well on the Atkin's diet. I'm a professional carb counter (wish I could win at food poker with this skill). OK, carbs...I'm a few weeks from a pre-op diet and there will be no fatty liver for this girl...you're goin' down!

Saturday, March 14, 2009

3/14/09 Cheap Motivation

Santa brought me an electronic Pedometer for Christmas…he’s good to me, that Santa. I haven’t really had a reason to use it until now. I got it out to start using it last week. DH helped me measure my stride and set it up (10-15 min.). It’s got a software component so we loaded that (you just put the CD in and push install). It was inexpensive, easy to set up and it is easy to use. It tracks your steps (and separates steps that are done aerobically) if it’s on you vertically or horizontally even. It comes with a clip and a lanyard, but you can also just drop it in your pocket or purse (way smaller than a cell phone...shaped like an egg).

Well I got to the end of the week and guess what? I couldn’t find the cord to hook it up to the computer so I could download my information...nice. I’d about come to the conclusion that it went out with the Christmas wrapping paper when it turned up yesterday when I was cleaning out my desk (who says Friday the 13th is bad luck). I took a look at the download and it’s going to be easy to use. It’s on all the time and once you set up the date and time I never have to push a button even...well, I do have to attach it to the computer and push 'download' on the computer once a week (but I love how I don't have to even think about it all week if I don't want to...I have more important things to think about...like where I stashed the computer cord!) It shows your information any way you want it; steps, aerobic steps (so I won’t have to track the treadmill separately), aerobic walking time, distance, calories, fat burned and your progress against any goals you’ve set up. It will be simple for me to take my calories burned and enter them into my FitDay food & exercise account.

It’s actually fun to see how you’re doing…I’m easily entertained ($30 bucks...cheap entertainment). So I’m back to tracking steps…now MARCH 2, 3, 4......

If anyone is interested: Omron HJ-720ITC $29.75 Amazon (with free shipping)...way less than what I paid in Dec., and you know OCD me, I researched them all, this one was rated #1 by Money Mag. and had great reviews.

Friday, March 13, 2009

3/13/09 Spring Fever

I’m feeling blah today. I’m not sure what it is…the ‘Spring Ahead’ clock change this week, the lack of enough coffee (I’m sipping my last cup right now to make it last…it’s cold now), or maybe that it’s Friday the 13th. I do know I’m sick of Winter. Mother Nature was teasing me last weekend with that 70° high (mean woman!). It’s 23° right now and we might hit 50° this weekend…weeee. I feel like a hibernating bear right now. I’m a person who is affected by the weather…I think I was meant to live in the South, although I do enjoy watching the season’s change. I enjoy sunlight. I put 32 windows and four glass doors in our house, and no it’s not that big…I just love natural light. Spring is my favorite season, but the past few years here we really haven’t had one. Last year ‘Spring’ was cold and raining everyday, then it went straight to a blazing hot Summer (so no Spring) and unfortunately my Asthma doesn’t enjoy extreme heat of summer. OK, winter is on it’s way out…whinefest over.

I think all of us getting bands this time of year are extremely lucky. I’ve said before that I felt sorry for those getting their bands right before the holidays; especially those in my climate. They must be extremely dedicated…make it through the holidays with no restriction yet and then sit there in the snow all winter. There will be no excuses for me not to be getting enough exercise…I’ll be banded right as Spring begins and will have the nice weather and all the outside activities it brings to look forward to. One more week until the Equinox/first day of Spring (March 20) and I'm hoping it actually arrives and is on time this year. I can’t wait!

Thursday, March 12, 2009

3/12/09 The Buzz about Coffee

I love my morning cuppa (and it loves me)…so much so that I drink it up until 2pm (my cutoff for being able to function, yet also sleep at night). This week I started to cut back my caffeine consumption in preparation for surgery. I don’t drink any pop (or in other parts of the country, soda), so that’s not an issue. Coffee is the first of my ‘food friends’ (translation ‘evil food addictions’) I will be saying goodbye to, probably not permanently (I’ll confirm that at my pre-op class), but at least for now and a while to come.

I’ve seen ‘facts’ about caffeine effecting the Lap Band here online including; causing band slippage, causing ulcers, changing the lining of your stomach, appetite stimulant, appetite suppressant (it’s in many diet pills), and diuretic. I don't know what's true, the only one I believe right now is the diuretic (and some online say that’s not true), so I'll follow my docs orders. Post-band until I can get all my water in daily (and some say you have to drink extra water if you drink coffee), I’ll be forgoing coffee. I’ve had to give this friend up several times before; once as a test to see if my migraines improved (nope), and once before another double surgery as I was afraid going off ‘cold turkey’ at the hospital would give me migraines. So I’m being smart and stepping this down gradually (and I’m on Migraine meds now). Week 1 and I’m surviving on less.

Are you aware of this, or perhaps you haven’t had your coffee yet? March is…drumroll please…National Caffeine Awareness Month (sponsored by the Caffeine Awareness Alliance…yes, there is such a thing…who knew?!). They want you to know that…with as little as 200 mg of caffeine, you can experience typical addictive symptoms such as irritability, restlessness, tension, insomnia, excitement, and gastrointestinal disturbance. So pretty much they want you to JUST SAY NO!

Now where’s the closest Coffee Rehab Center, because I’m going to be in withdrawl and pretty irritable by next week?! Hello, my name is BG, and I'm a coffee addict.

-------------------------------------------
In response lots of Comment about benefits and people still drinking it:

-Yeah, I did look at the benefits too, so you're right there are good things about it, yay! There have been more studies on coffee than any other food. Even the 'pro' sites say coffee is a mild diuretic (but you have to drink more than 4-5 cups for it to have any negative effects on fluids), that's why I'm getting rid of it at least temporarily until I'm getting enough fluids post-band (better safe...). As I said, I've found no evidence on the other 'facts' people online came up with either, so I don't believe them. Glad to know you're still drinking it with no problems! I'll be joining you for a latte soon. Thanks!

-I think many fat people have addictive personalities. That's why transfer addictions are such an issue post-op. I often wish that food was like other addictions...go cold turkey, go through withdrawl/12 step program and never touch it again...not possible. Well if I end up going back to an addiction post-op at least coffee/caffeine is one I can live with...we'll see. DH asked me what was wrong with me last night when I snapped at him...yikes. Thanks for the support/information all!

And (comment about switching to peppermint tea and peeing)...that only works with asparagus LOL.

-BG

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

3/11/09 I’m a Graduate

Today I graduated from PT. I’m feeling really good about it. Not just because I’m not in as much pain anymore, but even more so because I’ve completed something successfully and it worked. I needed that right now, more than you know. As you know I haven’t been having very good luck with health things being successful (respiratory problem for 12 weeks with many, many failed treatments; then hysterectomy/bladder sling surgeries failure, etc.) and I was beginning to wonder a little if the LB would be a failure too. My cup is half full attitude was beginning to buckle slightly when it came to medical issues.

So this was ‘just what the doctor ordered’/I needed right now. I had two long standing pain issues and they were both greatly helped by PT; way better than my expectations even. I’m no fool though, I now know where/how severe my osteoarthritis is and there’s no ‘cure’. I’ll be doing my follow-up exercises at home, and try to watch the wear and tear on my body with all the home improvement projects I do (yeah right, who else is going to do it?).

And then, there’s always ‘Plan B’ (another one of my evil plans). I took a ton of assorted muffins and juices into the staff at the PT office this morning for their breakfast on my last day, much to their delight. I told them if I come back bent in half this spring after shoveling mulch and resurfacing my patio before the big graduation parties, they’d better be kind and not scold me.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

3/10/09 My Story and My ‘Moment’

*Post Deleted for Lap Band Book

Monday, March 9, 2009

3/9/09 Barbie (and I) are turning 50 this year!

Today is Barbie’s 50th Birthday (Barbie Millicent Roberts that is). We were born the same year…1959. I figure if she looks this good at 50, maybe 50 isn’t going to be so bad (and she does have about 6 weeks on me). Say what you want about her creating a bad image or stereotype (interesting info. below) for our daughters, I love Barbie. What girl doesn’t have wonderful childhood memories of playing with her Barbie?

My 3 sisters and I got a lot of hours of creative play out of our Barbies. Sometimes we’d steal the Ken Doll and the Johnny West Doll (He was a Cowboy, complete with chaps and hat…think ‘Marlboro Man’…dreamy) out of my brother’s room (much to his annoyance). I remember making furniture out of cardboard…a long tissue box was the perfect bed, and with a few tissues you had sheets and a comfy pillow (4 girls, 4 tissue boxes with tissues everywhere...Mom was mad). My Mom used to buy actual patterns for Barbie outfits and sew them up for us as gifts. Back then, other than hair color, you had to give your Barbie her personality with clothing, accessories and by styling her hair…it required some creative thinking to decide what mood your Barbie was in that day…evening gown with the silver clutch purse, or mini dress with the fishnets and go-go boots? Some of my best sister memories are with our Barbies.

My DD was born in 1987 and by then Barbie clothes and accessories were now cheap and readily available. I relived my childhood again…my DD had the pop-up playhouse, plastic furniture, a bathtub that ran real water and a car with a remote control. She loved playing Barbies as much as I did. When my two DS’s came along they got their Ken dolls, and a jeep, fire truck, police truck and even a Baywatch Boat that they loved taking to the local baby pool when they were tots. What’s not to like about Barbies?

Here’s the interesting comparison of Real Women vs. Barbie


Real Women
Average woman's height is 5'4"
Their weight is approx. 140 lbs.
They wear a size 14 dress
Their bust is between 36" and 37" (B cup)
Their waist is between 30" and 34"
Their hips average between 40" and 42"
Barbie (as a human)
Barbie's height would be 7'2"
Her weight would be 101 lbs.
She would wear a size 4 dress
Her bust would be 39" (FF cup)
Her waist would be 19" (same as her head)
Her hips would be 33"
Her shoe size would be a 5 (some say her boob size and small feet would make it impossible for her to stay standing.
Her neck is twice as long as the real women


Poor Barbie has also been the source of some controversy lately. Apparently she’s getting some new flack for coming with stick-on temporary tattoos now. Parents are upset that this is the wrong message and that Barbie’s wholesome image is now changing to compete with other products (OK, I hate those Bratz dolls too). They're calling it her midlife crisis. It’s OK Barbie, I can relate. Just like you, I’ve always been considered the girl next door…and no one ever believes I have a tattoo either! Happy Birthday!

Totally Stylin Tattoo Barbie

--------------------------------

- You too can be Barbie...for a mere 700,000 US (well, for me, it would be well over a million...she started with more). The Boyfriend costs extra...sorry.
Sarah Burge has had plastic surgery worth £500,000 to look Barbie-like.

- I'd like some of that too...
What I might get...
the pink tulle tiara...
on sale at WalMart...
in the Barbie section.
-BG

Sunday, March 8, 2009

3/8/09 Ticker Update Time!

Whoo Hoo! I can finally update my Ticker! One “ten pound head” (with my fat face) gone and nine or so more to go. I think I win the award for slowest weight loss pre-band…actually, probably not as I’ve run across quite a few others here who also weren’t allowed to lose much on their Six Months of Lingering Torture. I know, I know, you’re saying what’s so torturous with not losing much weight??!! Gee I REALLY feel sorry for you BG! I’m telling you if you’ve come to this point in your life where you feel desperate enough to get WLS, then you’re ready to make the change, and you want it to start happening sooner, rather than later. I’d describe my feelings much like an alcoholic would about ‘hitting bottom’. For me, and I think many others, we had some sort of turning point, or ‘moment’ where we hit bottom and decided to consider WLS (I’ll share my moment another time). It’s actually been hard while you’re researching and learning all this not to be able to put it all into practice. I swear it's made the time go slower too, probably because you don't have as much to do (tracking calories, exercising, planning/cooking diet meals). If you’re someone like me (professional dieter) who is always either gaining or losing it’s been weird staying about the same weight. I haven’t stayed about the same weight this long in I don’t know when!

So ‘breaking’ my plan, and actually starting my stricter diet this last month of the Six Months of Lingering Torture, has been a great feeling. I started my dieting last Monday and haven’t really been cutting the calories too drastically yet (I’m planning to step things down) as I didn’t want to lose a TON of weight this month. Well, you can all call me an ‘April Fool’ if I mess this whole thing up and get denied! Time to update my Ticker tomorrow…FINALLY!...I hope I remember how!

Me, Summer 2010: (Shar pei puppy) “Lost Weight? Me? Thanks for noticing!”

Saturday, March 7, 2009

3/7/09 Spring Ahead

In my area of the U.S., tonight is the night we all lose an hour of sleep. Daylight Savings Time means we all turn our clocks ahead an hour tonight or ‘Spring Ahead’. I officially have Spring Fever. Our seeds are up (under the grow lights in the basement) and we’re having an unseasonably warm weekend.

I thank my DD daughter for that. She’s spent the last week in Florida on her college, Sr. year Spring Break, where it was unseasonably cool. She sent me a beautiful photo from her phone the other day…the sun was setting and there wasn’t a soul on the beach…her text “I’m alone on the beach, and I’m freezing!” She’s driving back today and bringing what I call warm (she calls freezing…well I guess it would be if I was trying to wear a bikini) 69° weather with her...thanks Honey.

Apparently, Daylight Savings Time has a mixed effect on health.
In societies with fixed work schedules it provides more afternoon sunlight for outdoor exercise. It alters sunlight exposure; whether this is beneficial depends on one's location and daily schedule, as sunlight triggers vitamin D synthesis in the skin, but overexposure can lead to skin cancer. Sunlight strongly influences seasonal affective disorder. DST may help in depression by causing individuals to rise earlier, but some argue the reverse. The Retinitis Pigmentosa Foundation Fighting Blindness, chaired by blind sports magnate Gordon Gund, successfully lobbied in 1985 and 2005 for U.S. DST extensions, but DST can hurt night blindness sufferers.

Clock shifts disrupt sleep and reduce its efficiency. Effects on seasonal adaptation of the circadian rhythm can be severe and last for weeks. A 2008 study found that although male suicide rates rise in the weeks after the spring transition, the relationship weakened greatly after adjusting for season. A 2008 Swedish study found that heart attacks were 5% more common the first three weekdays after the spring transition, and 5% less common the first weekday after the autumn transition. The government of Kazakhstan cited health complications due to clock shifts as a reason for abolishing DST in 2005.

So try your best to get enough sleep this week…if you’re feeling blue, it’s normal (please don’t even think about suicide)…and for those of you with heart issues, be extra careful this week. The up-side is that we all have a built-in excuse for being grouchy for at least a week or more. Make the most of it! “I’m sorry I’m so grouchy, but it’s not my fault! It’s this d*#@n Daylight Savings Time!”

Friday, March 6, 2009

3/6/09 That’s the Way the Cookie Crumbles (and Artificial/Replacement Sweeteners)

Report from the Pittsburgh Tribune News
GS Cookie Sales Crumble
Nationally, cookie sales are reportedly down 19 percent from last year. Regionally, the outlook isn’t as dire.
"I think the economy has something to do with it," Vance says. Since the cookie sale is the primary fundraiser for troops each year, Vance says decreased sales may hold girls back from great experiences in the coming year.

My cookies have arrived, from not one, but two different Girl Scouts. I have no idea what my family ordered (remember I avoided that) because I didn’t look. But I think my family helped with the Regional Outlook being better…I’ve been told there are many boxes on our shelves…I’m staying away.

This got me thinking about how I’m going to deal with my sweet-tooth as part of my lifestyle change. I’m a huge chocoholic and as you’ve heard me say so many times I’m all about starting into this change as a lifestyle change and not a diet, so it’s all about being able to make better choices without feeling deprived. I’ve never cooked/used many artificial sweeteners, but I’ve started some research on this. I’ve got some sugar free Russell Stover chocolates, individually packaged that work for me, so I thought I’d like to learn about artificial sweeteners, possibly even in cooking/baking.

*Note I’m no Dr. or Nutritionist, I read a lot of articles and this was the gist of what I found out, I don’t claim to know what’s truth, and 'experts' come down on both sides of the safety issues on all these.

I started with the Lap Band; What I’ve turned up so far is that several people have blamed band issues on artificial sweeteners…one declared that it was a major contributor to her band slippage?!(not sure how), and many people have said their docs have told them not to use them (some say they cause sugar cravings).

There are two types of sweeteners available on the market, nutritive and non-nutritive.

Nutritive sweeteners provide sweet taste and a source of energy (calories). Their sweet taste comes from the presence of natural sugars glucose and fructose, alone or together, as sucrose. They are higher in calories than non-nutritive sweeteners, but they are all natural. Exceptions*
- Common examples of nutritive sweeteners include typical table sugars (both brown and white), molasses, honey, agave nectar, and syrups such as maple and high fructose corn syrup.
- Erythritol/Polyols, energy-reduced sugar alcohols: Slightly less calories than true sugar. Often called sugar replacements, these sugar alcohols are derived from natural sugars- fruits or produced commercially from dextrose. The most common include: sorbitol, mannitol, xylitol and maltitol. Products are Organic Zero, Zsweet, Sun Crystals. Gas and laxative issues.
- Stevia: almost 0 cal. New product. Truvia*(Rebinia), PureVia* (*some say both have artificial additives), or raw/natural Stevia. Some say has a bitter aftertaste and causes gas (I’ve actually grown this plant in my herb garden before).
- Whey Low: 75% less cal. than sugar. Fairly new product. Made with different sugars-sucrose, fructose, lactose; studies not clear on calorie absorption-they claim 75% less calories because of the way the combination of sugars acts to not be absorbed in the intestines. The only studies were done by the company. Some say more studies need to be done on this product.

Non-nutritive sugar substitutes offer no energy (calories) and sweeten with little volume. Non-nutritive sweeteners include: saccharin, aspartame, sucralose, acesulfame potassium and neotame. For many of you who drink protein shakes, almost all of them contain these.
- Saccharine: 4 cal./pack Sweet ’n Low- thought to be dangerous was almost banned by the FDA, but public outcry kept it as it was the only substitute at the time, and it used to be labeled ‘cancer causing in lab animals. Made from petroleum based products.
- Aspartame: 2 cal./tsp. Nutra Sweet, Equal, Spoonful- some studies show that aspartame is dangerous/cancer causing and is considered dangerous by most, by law has to show PKU (disease in infants) warning. Found in Diet Pepsi/Coke, SF Jell-O/Pudding, and Crystal Light.
- Splenda/sucralose: Says 0 cal, but it's NOT calorie free-has 4 per serving, which can add up if you’re baking with it, i.e. coke zero has 4 calories. FDA rule- they can claim 0 if it’s less than 5, the same is true for all packaging; i.e. they can claim something is 0 carbs if it is under 5 per serving. Splenda has sugar: maltodextrin & dextrose/corn syrup and sucralose, the process changes the sugar molecules and turns some atoms to chlorine (other chlorinated products include pesticides). So, although it’s made from natural sugars the process changes the atoms. Remember that everything is ‘natural’ it just depends how you define artificial vs. natural. Most consider this the safest low cal. nonnutritive sweetener, but there have been no outside studies.
- Acesulfame K/acesulfame potassium: 0 cal. sold as Sunett, Sweet One- thought to cause cancer (no new studies underway). It’s found in Crystal Light, SF Jell-O & Pudding.
- Neotame: Newer product. From amino acids- Clabber Girl Sugar Replacer, Domino Pure D’Lite. Many consider it to be much more dangerous than even aspartame, which was considered the worst. Used in many gums, Herr's pretzels.

The bottom line of what I found out was that although there are opinions on both sides, one thing that most everyone can agree on is that even if artificial sweeteners aren't bad for you, they aren't good for you either. I'm no health food/organic nut, but even I was appalled at the lack of studies on these products and the role of big business in keeping these on the market (ie. Saccharin is only still on the market because Congress passed a 2 year moratorium against any ban of the product by the FDA when they wanted to ban it in 1977, which Congress has continually extended). Even Cyclamate that was banned by the FDA in 1970 is currently being reconsidered (I lived on TAB in my teenage years...no wonder I was so skinny).

I don’t have time to read every nutrition label and I’ll probably still chose to eat some things with the non-nutritives like SF puddings (let's face it, obesity will kill me sooner than aspertame caused Cancer). As with most things…all things in moderation. I do plan to limit my intake of Crystal Light, which I have always drank to excess on every diet, and just up the water intake. I don’t intend to start baking with any of the non-nutritive, although I might look into some of the nutritive ones more. I think this will turn out to be like the rest of my theme for my ‘lifestyle change’ …I’ll be using real sugar, and just like other bad foods…in VERY small amounts. Besides, I love really DARK chocolate…Like Hershey’s 70%, which are lower in calories and higher in the good aspects of chocolate like antioxidants (cocoa has more antioxidants/flavanoids than green tea)…a tiny bite satisfies my chocoholic cravings.

The cave woman got most of her sweets from fruits, which were seasonal, so she bulked up in the summer and fall to survive the long winter. So stick mainly with the natural sweets...nature knows best!

Thursday, March 5, 2009

3/5/09 Blonde Moments

I’m losing it…really. My kids call it ‘old-timers’, DH calls it ‘brain-farts’, I call it ‘blonde moments’. Now that I’m back from the Dark Side, I swear I lost brain cells going back from my first venture as a brunette to my natural blonde (OK, maybe a few grays are under there, but I’ll never see them). I was on the computer most of the day yesterday, not here, well I did check in often, but I was on a tracking site for diet/exercise re-entering all my foods and info. ‘Re-entering’ you ask? OH yeah. I set up my account for the site at the beginning of January (after asking on LBT which site is best), then my computer broke and I also found out I didn’t need to track anything, so I hadn’t been back.

Since my decision to start seriously dieting this week, I went to my bookmarks and went back to the site to start tracking. My account had been deleted so I had to set a new one up, I was guessing they get deleted after a certain period and it had been months. OK, now on to tracking! Quaker Oatmeal for breakfast…hmm, not there…on the one day I used this in January, I thought I’d entered that. Where’s the help button? Can’t find ‘help’, so I’ll go to those message boards…the people there were really helpful setting up my account in January. Can’t find the message boards…and there are all these ads to upgrade your service to the PC or even higher level Premium Version …for a cost $$$. Hmmm…I wonder if you now have to buy into the first level at least to get to the message boards. So I spend the day entering my information, exercises, goals, and had to custom add each food in, which took FOREVER when you’re entering everything on the box nutrition information and dividing out the amount you ate. After day 2 of doing all this extra work, I got SO frustrated with it all that I posted a thread on LBT asking for help from site users talking about the site changes and my questions. I didn’t get any replies.

I was getting ready to start entering info. yesterday morning when I decided to find my original thread online where I’d asked which tracking site is best. My plan was to PM some of the people who had recommended that site and ask them my questions (again, no one was replying to my new ‘help’ thread).

Dear GAWD, major blonde moment! You got it…for two days I’d been on the wrong site *cheeks burning with embarrassment*. I’d been on FitDay and the site I wanted was MyFitnessPal (which I hadn’t bookmarked). Yep, my account was still there, the message board hadn’t disappeared. I’m losing it.

*I ended up using FitDay

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

3/4/09 LB Picasso

*Pic of girl with three boobs (dressed) was here

*Portion of Post Deleted for Lap Band Book

I’ve been thinking on and off about my tummy artwork (that’s what we artists do) and how I could make it funny without insulting my doc that he’d forget (he DID tell me to remind him).

I was reading some blogs lately that got me thinking; maybe I could write a joke, or a funny poem on my belly to point out my port placement…welcome to ‘my kind of crazy’…yes, this is what goes on in my head. People’s incision photos online (eeewww), got me commenting about making different ‘connect the dot’ pictures with my incisions and washable markers and posting them here (NOT). But maybe I can do a dot picture for my port site?

So, why am I making this confession and sharing this now? I had second thoughts…what if the Sharpie isn’t sterile, or it messes them up and they refuse to do surgery because I wrote on myself? I’m not crazy enough yet to call my surgeon and ask. Today “The Doctors” was on as I was doing the laundry…the plastic surgeon on the panel was talking about how a Sharpie is his best friend for surgery! Hey yea, we’ve all seen those Dr. 90210 shows where they’re marking all over the woman’s bodies with a Sharpie. I’d forgotten about that! So I ran to the TV to listen. The question was about whether a Sharpie is sterile or not...WOW…my very question! Apparently Sharpie’s have a lot of alcohol in them, and even if they weren’t sterile the Betadine they smear all over you sterilizes everything. OK, I’m going for it! Now I’ve got artwork to plan! My practical jokes always backfire on me, so I hardly ever attempt them…they’ll either think I’m nuts or laugh…we’ll see what happens…if I wake up with a third boob, it backfired.

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In response to Comments/Suggestions:

- Spew Alert...LOL! Porthole...Ohhh! Good idea!

- WARNING- Possible Spew Alert! Yea, a pic is perfect...one of my Dr. Suessy poems he might have a little trouble with...

Left goes the port,
Or I'll take you to court.
Sew me up pretty,
Wanna be itty-bitty!

- When I asked people where there port is and where they'd put their port if they had a choice, I saw several women who told me their doc attached their port to the breastbone right on the sternum (right thing?)...they described it as a third boob. I don't think anyone gets fat there...no more low cleavage tops for them!

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

3/3/09 Better Late than Never

*Post Deleted for Lap Band Book

3/2/09 Another Month Bites the Dust!

So this morning we were out and at PT by 7:30am; upper body is doing great, lower back is…fair. I skipped out early on my last PT exercise so I could come home to weigh-in at home before the actual weigh-in…always such an ordeal. This is too much stress/work…stupid insurance (for the 247th x).

Month 5 weigh in...“On the scale”…and up I went…I could barely look…242...no loss, no gain…I’m golden.

A different CRNP came in and I gave her my sample ‘Letter of Medical Clearance and Medical Necessity’ with my information on it so they’ll have the next month to type their own up/change it and have it ready for me at my final visit. That’s the plan anyway…the only thing between me and submitting for approval now is the last monthly weigh-in and the letter from my PCP. If these are done the first few days in April, the surgeon’s office will set a tentative surgery date and I’ll get to go to my pre-op class (held twice a month). As my Dad would say ‘There’s a snowballs chance in Hell’ that I’ll get my band in April, but I haven’t given up hope yet (eternal optimist, remember). I’ve got a ton of company coming May 1st for DD’s college graduation (hers will be a weekend with our huge extended family, but no enormous party) and in a perfect world I’d have my band and be at least a week out by then. If not, I’ll have to sandwich it in between the two graduations…DS’s HS graduation is the beginning of June…HUGE party for that one with TONS of work prior, so I’d rather be well healed before that one, but we don’t always get what we want…and NO, that isn’t a complaint…just a wish…a girl can dream...

I’ll take my band….in a box, with a fox, in a house, with a mouse, here and there, ANYWHERE!

Sunday, March 1, 2009

3/1/09 Cake Anyone?

*Sorry, pics didn't transfer

In preparation for my Big 5-0 birthday this year in April, I thought I'd take a look at some possibilities for birthday cakes...so many choices...what do you think?

I could pretend I'm 5 again...

or 12...

I'm not quite sure what this is an homage to...It looks like an Austin Powers jacket (I guess I was a child of the 60's), a Crazy OLD Cat Lady, and maybe two of me at different stages in childhood so I can get depressed about getting old...but I DO garden...

Or...since I'll be really missing my carbs post-band...

Or maybe the real thing...

I am so NOT joining the Red Hat Society...Red SHOES, maybe...

...and I could wear my red shoes to Shake my Grove Thing! MMmm...that disco ball looks SO appetizing...

Well, I certainly will NEED to be doing a lot of this post band...

I think this is an Over the Hill cake, apparently I'll need a pretzel ladder to get over (that will never hold me)...but it certainly doesn't look too appetizing, does it?

Or maybe this just sums it up...

Come to think of it, I've never been much of a cake person...and I'll probably be getting my band the same week, so cake is probably out...maybe this is what I'll do...hmmm...I won't have lost that much by then...I wonder if this comes in a triple layer? (Cake Costume)
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