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I'm on a new journey to pay-it-forward & with the support of my Groupies/friends...

I'm writing a LAP BAND BOOK!!!


Friday, April 9, 2010

4/9/10 **PLEASE READ**

I'll apologize now for the book length of this post. I'm sure I could have broken this down into about five posts, but I thought it was best to say everything together...It's the hardest post I've written yet. I'll thank you in advance for reading it…thank you.

I seriously didn't even know what a blog was until I stumbled upon a section of them on LBT as I was beginning my LB research. I think blogging is kind of like our LB journeys...we all have to figure out what we need and what works best for us and do it. I started my blog the same way I started my LB journey...I had to learn to put me at the top of the list for once. I selfishly (allowed myself to take the time) started a 'journal' (blog) for me where I could document my journey and research things I was interested in along the way. Journaling is something I've tried to do at several other points in my life (yeah, my whole family had gratitude journals one year), it always ended as fast as it started, but it intrigued me. I looked at the blogs on LBT and it seemed like a 'safe' and tiny place where only a few people even commented on blogs, so I really expected to just be writing for me. I can't tell you how surprised I was when people started to comment and how much I appreciated all the things I learned from other LBers helping me. It soon became such a wonderful and unexpected support system for me and when I got Banded, I tried hard to pay-it-forward and be there for others. There are a group of us that are/were long-term bloggers there, but mainly there are/were lots of soon-to-be or newly banded bloggers needing help and support. The comment I loved to get was that 'whenever I need help, I know I can count on you to answer'. I was so thrilled by my LB results even at that point and all the support that I'd gotten...I felt like I had been saved and helped in so many ways that would impact my life forever.

I've tried to be honest about my happy, but not so perfect life and my not so perfect LB journey. I write whatever I'm feeling that day and I try to write with the same voice I'd be speaking to myself with (yes, some days I talk like a crazy person, and I have lots of days where I just want to laugh, but that's me too). I think the biggest compliment people can pay me in my blogging is for them to say that I've said something they've been feeling, they've learned something that will help them, and that they feel like they know me...because you know what? They do.

As I came to my Blogiversary last Fall I wasn't sure what I wanted to do. I wanted to continue paying it forward, but several other Blogger's on LBT had been encouraging me for awhile to move to Blogger (and so did others on other WL sites I visit now and then) and they told me that I'd be able to reach more people looking into the LB (Kathi was my main Blogger promoter, thanks GF). I was a little nervous about it as I knew that others were following me on LBT (even though there weren't 'followers' I could see by page hits that I had over 70,000 page hits in a year). Let me stop and say here, that I'm just stating facts…anything that might sound like a 'brag' is SO not me (most know that I'm a super humble person), but you never know how things come across when you write. Anyway, as the Holiday's drew near I looked into it more and decided that it was a good idea and I'd move the blog after the New Year.

I made another big decision with my blog move. I decided I'd move my blog without any of the funny pics I loved to use that made me laugh. I decided I'd focus more on my LB journey and less on my day to day life and the silliness that is me (no, not taking that completely out, but there was a point to all this seriousness I'm getting to, so hang with me here).

I know this is the scariest blog I've ever written (oooo spooky). I'm not a woman who generally gets scared about what I do (OK, you know I am scared of the dark still, but I have no control over the Boogie Man...yet). I've given presentations in front of hundreds of people and never batted an eyelash. I think I've shared that in the past, I've sometimes had trouble pushing the 'publish' button when I've gotten a little deep here, but I've learned over time to trust that the people who love me may not always have the same viewpoint, but they'll respect my honesty and that I've shared mine...and more times than not, more people than I'd ever imagine feel the same way and were grateful that someone articulated it. Let me say that again...I've learned to trust my readers...that's important...I don't feel scared anymore publishing any post...except now I'm nervous again...just a little.

I'm wondering if those that have been following me for a long time have seen at least a little change in me since my move over to 'Blogger'. Maybe it's just me, you know how we tend to magnify things when we know we're hiding something (yes, I have been). You see I know that there has been a change, because I know there's been one.

You see, I decided with the move that either my blog would peter out or I'd be trying to do something more to pay-it-forward. Let me go back and tell you that from the very first weeks of my blog I had people sending me private messages telling me how much they enjoyed it, or felt the same way and soon I was getting lots of messages telling me that I needed to write a book (again, I'm just stating the facts). I was flattered, but laughed it off saying I'm no writer, but thanks for the support. Here's the thing, even a year later I was regularly getting Private Messages, emails or Comments with people telling me they'd read my whole blog start to finish and that I needed to write a book (many during their recovery and let me just say...reading my year of blogs is a big feat...I'm sure it's longer than any book...you know I can't describe unpacking the gauze in my belly button without five paragraphs LOL...it totally amazed me how many people did this).

I started to think that maybe there was a need for more information out there from a Bander's perspective. I've looked at the LB books and all of them are written by Drs.; there's one that's written by a LBer and her Drs. but a lot of it is also from a medical perspective. I think you'd all agree with me that this LB journey has been so much huger than any of us originally thought it would be...I've gotten so much more from others going through their journeys than any LB Dr. will ever know (unless they have one). I think there's so much more that can be shared that would help newbies just starting out than what our Docs tell us. The fact that I had so many people reading my whole blog tells me that there's a need for this information out there.

When I moved the blog the end of January I made a deal with myself...I'd get rid of my funny pics (I thought that was the only reason people followed me) and if people were still interested and if I was still getting comments and emails about writing a book, then I'd try it...yes, you heard that right. To make sure I didn't chicken-out, the week I moved the blog, I told my DH what I was planning...he was very surprised, but he'd support anything I do. More shocking to me than rapidly reaching those 100 first followers (and the horror of the before pics) was that the very first week on Blogger I got comments again about writing the book...the very same day I got an email from one of my LBT friends, Diane about writing a book...it was like I was getting signs...I told her the above and that I was going to try it...something about saying it committed me to the process. I told a few other friends who had contacted me (one was Lena, my LBT supporter and a published author, thanks GF) who supported the book idea as well. I spent my extra time January researching book writing, and making several outlines and then writing a few portions.

Here's the thing...by February I had so many Followers that I was finding it impossible to read/comment on others blogs and write the book. I decided that I was new to Blogger and that I needed to show the same support to others that I'd done on LBT so people could get to know me and so that I could give the support that was the reason I moved here. By March I could hardly keep up with all the blogs (on LBT there a lots of bloggers, but most of them are more like 'posts', short questions), here there are so many wonderful articulate bloggers and I wanted to read and support them all.

I've gotten three months into this blog move and now I've want to keep the promise that I made. I hope by now that you know me and that you know I don't want to stop supporting you, but I need to devote more time to this. I hope you won't desert me if I can't be giving you the support you need all the time. I'm not going to disappear, and I plan to keep blogging…I'm hoping to ask for your help with portions of the book (like TOM and post-band TOM changes…hysterectomy here). I want your opinions because I so value them. I don't want to represent just my opinions, but all the ways that others approach their band journey as well...as you know there are lots of choices we have to make along the way and no one way is the right way...just knowing all the choices would have helped me a lot.

So here's where I am now...I hope that I still have your support and for those of you that don't know me well yet, I hope you'll believe me when I tell you what my friend Diane told me last night when I was freaking out over what my new Blogger friends might think...that I'm doing this for all the right reasons. I really feel so blessed to have my LB and especially to have all the support and knowledge I've gained along the way. I really want to try and pay-it-forward to as many LBers as I can and that's the reason I'm trying this. After a little research I can tell you it's going to be a very long process (maybe a year), that 99% of book ideas submitted never get published (but I'll give it my best shot), if you want to make money being an author is not the way to do it. You know it would be a very limited audience of we LBers, and again, I'd just be thrilled to ever get this published.

I'll need your help and support more than ever along this new path I'm taking. I know by the time this is finished most of you will be at maintenance and won't need this information, but I hope you feel like I do that this LB journey has been such a learning experience that for the newbies just starting a book that they'll be able to relate and turn to might just make their journey a little easier. Thanks as always for listening. Here goes that 'publish' button...

43 comments:

diane said...

I will need a signed first edition copy! And i'll be bringing a bottle of champagne when i come out to get it!

Stephanie said...

Best of luck to you on this! You have my total support, as your blogs have been very helpful for me!

tessierose said...

I'm so proud of you. You have such a gift, it would be a shame not to share it. I have read every one of your posts and feel like you are a major reason I was so prepared for this journey. I hope that you will leen on this community to support you through the ups and downs of writing just as we have been leening on you for support in our journeys. I can't wait to say, "I knew her before she was famous!"

Pam Griffis said...

I think this is a fabulous idea...and you are just the one to be able to get others to understand those choices and teh consquences of making a "bad" choice. I have really enjoyed reading your posts, both here and on LBT. You have given me comfort when I didn't even know where to turn to figure out this path. Thanks for taking the time out to support all of us. Now, what can we do to help you?

Jennifer said...

I want a first edition signed copy too! I will buy it for all of my friends, I'll keep a box of them in my trunk to hand out to anyone who asks me about my band. I will be your number 1 fan! I'm so happy and excited for you. I've said it before, you are an amazing teacher and have a gift of sharing your story with all of us. I learn something from you every day. I think this is the best band related idea you've ever had. (Well, other than getting the band itself!)

Sandy Lee said...

What a great idea. I thought at first you were going to stop blogging- egads!

I can't wait for the book signing-I'll be first in line-and the appearances on Oprah-oh my! Book of the month. Your writing and humor is precious and especially important to this wonderful LB community but also for all others who want to lose weight. I know you will have tons of support from us for whatever you need.

Trixie said...

Yea!!! I'm so excited for you!! You will write a terrific book?

I don't expect many publishers would turn you down, but in case they do, do you know you can self publish your book and distribute on your own, online and in the offices of surgeons,support group, local bookstores, etc. and make a killing? There is a lot of need out there for this information and people will pay for a book written by somebody that's had the band, because they want the inside scoop.

I know it's a long way in the future, and you will probably get a publisher, but if you ever decide to go the self publication route, and you are looking for someone to go in on the cost of publishing for a % of the profits, I would be interested; please keep me in mind.

Trixie

Alexis said...

Wow. wow. wow! I don't speak for all of us, but I bet it would be safe to say you have all of our support 100%. You've been such a wonderful success and I couldn't think of a better (or more articulate)person to write a book about this journey! Reading that post, I was so excited for you and I could actually feel your excitement and nervousness all at the same time.

I don't think any of us will be offended at all with you taking the time to focus on something that you've really wanted to accomplish. We'll know you are there in the background still supporting us ;)

....I too would like a signed copy please!

Kim said...

I think this is a great idea!!! You have such a gift with words. I too will need a signed copy!! :)

-Grace- said...

This is wonderful news! I am new to blogging and I always enjoy your posts and sweet comments. Can't wait to read your book! :)

DawnB said...

I think this is awesome! You are right, so many people need help from our perspective, not from medical terminology. I support you 100%, I am pretty much a newbie and your posts have definitely helped me gain insight into the band. Good luck to you BG!!!!!

Nicole said...

You have my support!! This is so great! And I will need a signed copy as well :)

carla said...

What an amazinf idea and I cant think of a better person to follwo through with it. I think you will get tons of support here and although ( god willing ) most of us will be at maintenace when this comes out I think that the LB is a life long journey and we can alwasy reference it and by the time it comes out you may have lots of info for us on maintenance etc. I am so happy for you and you should be so proud of yourself!!!

Miss Tori said...

Best of luck with your new venture! I think you'll be surprised at the response you get.

About the following and reading other bloggers, it is hard when you have over 50 that you want to keep up with. That's why I love Google Reader. I can read everyone, although it is hard to comment sometimes. But you can keep up with their journeys.

Best of luck!

Michelle said...

Best of luck and you can do it..

Jenny said...

What an amazing opportunity! Keep us posted. You will be a wonderful writer!

Dirttrackdiva said...

i think this is an amazing idea!! i know i have laughed and cried with you as i've read your posts. you. are. amazing!! i will be glad to help in any way that i can.

ps~i will also be in line for the autograph signing. i want a first edition copy too.

in a way it's like we're all writing it. i wish great success on this new path. can't wait.

Rebekah said...

OH MY GOODNESS!!!!!!!!! I am SOOO excited about this! I have been "blog stalker of the year" from your hints on how to weigh heavy on your first weigh-in to get insurance approval to hitting goal weight. I know you're not a doctor--but you are SO scientifically accurate and really helpfully overanalytical--I used to/still do read over your accounts of things as I experience them. It really helps me process what is going on mentally and physiologically.

I will miss you like crazy, but CAN'T WAIT to read your book!!!!!!! You've got to illustrate it, too!! Then, after you are a published author, you have to get your Life Coach certificate and be a Lap-Band Life Coach--to help people get their head-bands right. There is a definite VOID in that area--and you would be great. Nevermind--focus on your book....I'm so excited! This is the "right thing"---I can just feel it!!!

Gilly said...

fantastic! we will be your biggest fans!!

Kristin said...

You will write a wonderful book. I can't wait to read it!

amandakiska said...

YES!!!! That is amazing. I've also thought about turning my blog into a book about my experiences.

I have a FB friend (and distant relative) who self-published her book through Publish America. It didn't cost her anything. I think they take a percentage of your sales. After a few months of being available only from their website, it went onto Amazon.com. Just somthing to look into.

I can't wait to read your book!

Melissa said...

Ditto to everything already said. Your book will be amazing and put me on the list for a signed copy :)

Drazil said...

Um - Miss BG - can I just say I told you so? HAHAHAH!

Mountain Laurel said...

This is great news! I know I really love your sense of humor, and I am certain others will, as well. You are absolutely right about the derth of lapband books. All I could find were by doctors, and were almost exclusively about the decision to get a lapband, up to coming home after surgery, and then they just DROP YOU. Having a chronicle from someone who has experienced it all AND covers every aspect up to and including maintenance will be extremely valuable. I, like Jennifer, will be giving your book out to friends and family!

Don't worry about reading and commenting on everything, our community is getting so huge, it cannot be done, anyway! Just update us every once in a while and let us cheer you on. Good luck!

Jess said...

I think that is wonderful! Best of luck to you!

Linda said...

Ok- I know I'm late on this one, but what a great idea. We'll miss you, but what you are doing is so great. I'm going to pre-order on Amazon right now! :)

sdh5463 said...

OMG... I'm so excited for you!!! I will follow you wherever you go... I followed you here didn't I! LOL I also must say that I am one of the ones that have turned to you and sent you private messages asking for advice and I will also be one of the first to buy your book... published or NOT! It will give me an excellent reason to travel the 4 hours to finally meet you!!! I, for one, love you BG

Sherry said...

You have my support 100% and I too want a signed copy! I completely understand and will of course miss your comments -- they have been so supportive and helpful to me -- but your decision serves a greater purpose. I just feel lucky that I slid in at the last minute and got to know you a little 'before' you were famous!

LDswims said...

You never have to ask for my support or explain why you've changed to me. Yes, I knew you changed.

My sweet hubby asked me today if he thinks anyone else is like me - on Blogger all day long. And I said yes, I know of some - and you have to be one of them since you follow everyone that follows you. With your crowd that's a full time job! And then you do random things like throw gall bladder surgery in just to make it more challenging (and definitely interesting).

If there is anyone in the blog world that should be nominated for writing a book of what a newbie (like me) needs to know that my surgeon won't tell me, I'd say you every time. You are articulate and classy and you will discuss things openly and honestly without crossing any lines. You are amazing, not just for your success with the Lap-Band but with your approach to life and your attitude towards all those you care about.

All I have to say is I want a signed copy, too. And I'll be coming to meet you to pick it up. You have touched my life and my heart in ways that are immeasurable. You will always have my support!

Anonymous said...

I am so glad that you decided to go public. I knew that you would get all the support you need to take on this wonderful task! If anyone can write a book about our LB journey it is you! You have my complete support, I want to offer my help as well, if you ever need it! You dont have any idea how many lives you have touched with your blog. I am very grateful for that very first "good luck" message you sent me over a year ago! You are definitly a very talented lady and your family must be very proud of you! Thanks for sharing your life in LB land with us!

Deanna

Kathy said...

Well, I am relatively new here but I have liked what I read and I am so happy for you. I will be looking forward to reading it as well. And I wouldn't mind my copy being signed either.

Fiona said...

AT last what a fantastic idea. I have had my band for 19 days and I have enjoyed your blog for all 19 of them (new follower that I am) but I wanted to tell you I have spent good hard earned money on books to help me through this process and every one of them is cold, medical and only deals with the facts. Nothing out there has helped with the roller coaster emotional journey and if it wasnt for LBT and great blogs like yours I would have believed I was the only one going through it. No one prepares you for the lows as well as the highs. Anyone who has either got a band or thinking of getting one NEEDS a book written by someone as real as you. You will be a huge success and you will be helping SO many people. I for one will not only buy a copy but encourage everyone I know to buy a copy, bandster or not. It would be a great read for anyone. Good luck xxx

http://incredible--shrinking--woman.blogspot.com/

Julie said...

Make it another signed copy for me. I would buy it with my eyes closed. and advertise for it in the UK. good luck with this great project

Butterfly/Amy said...

I'm so glad you're doing this. This is why I came to blogger in the first place, I needed and wanted more information than the dr's could give me and indeed I've found it here through you and others. You definitely have my support!

seckert08 said...

Can't wait to read it! Of course we support you! That's what friends do.

Lena Austin said...

You know I'm a supporter, BG. (wink) From personal experience I know how difficult your journey to publication will be. I'll hold your hand the whole way.

Bonnie said...

Sounds like a great idea. Good luck.

Yvonne said...

What an awesome idea - if I was a better writer I would do that too. If you can't get published you can always initially self publish and list it on the various lap banding websites and I guarantee you will have interested readers. :-) Good luck.

Joey said...

{sorry I'm late, I got behind on blogs}

It's a great idea! The universe is telling you to do it!! There is so much to draw from in the blogging community. It'll be great! LMK if you need someone to design a book cover for you. It's what I do for a living :) good luck!!

Jacquie said...

Go for it BG! I love reading anything you write! You have been so supportive of all of us and you do not have to worry about losing our support, thats for sure.

Anonymous said...

Congratulations - you have inspired so many of us "newbie", and now it's our turn to pay you back! Best wishes, and I am so looking forward to the book!

Gen said...

That is awesome!!!! Why would you even worry what we think? You should totally do it!

Have you thought about teaming up with a LB doc to write the medical part? It seems like that might be helpful, but certainly not necessary. I think your timing is perfect, we need more LB books from the Bandsters' perspective!

Girl Bandit said...

Fantastic...I will buy it. Good for you. When I get a chance I will go back and answer the other questions I missed. Not sure how I missed this original post. Congrats and you have my support

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