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

I'm writing a LAP BAND BOOK!!!

Saturday, February 26, 2011

2/26/11 The 300

I want to thank all of you who are friends. I appreciate it more than you know. It's amazing to me that you've stuck with me and continued to join in, even when I'm not able to spend as much time putting together entertaining blogs, or even any kind of daily blogs anymore. I want you to know that I do my best to follow and keep up with you (send me a note if I'm not following), and I read a lot, even when I'm not always commenting. You so often inspire a thought for me to write's great to hear other perspectives...our journeys are each so unique. Without fail, even when I haven't said so here, it's at the times I start to question myself that I'll always get such wonderful comments or emails from one of you to keep me going. You can only hope that some small part of what you share has helped someone else and it means so much to actually hear that, so thank you.

We are an army in our war against obesity. The information we share with each other makes us each wiser and better able to wage our individual battles. The support we give each other forms an impenetrable line that works to hold each of us up at the times we are faltering. Together we are so much stronger than we are alone.
So hold tight and sharpen those blades; keep asking...keep telling...keep learning...keep teaching...keep open...keep supporting...keep aware.

The battle is never over...but it does get easier with each success...and're never alone.

Love to all!

Friday, February 25, 2011

2/25/11 Little Shop Of Horrors

Let's talk about not those BOOBs, my boobs! Or lack thereof. The worst thing about my boobs is...getting a mammogram (especially after I lost my boobs somewhere along the WL journey...if you find them, please return them). Oh, and I would be remiss if I didn't remind you to get your mammogram, if you're due.

OK all you big BOOBs, I don't want to hear you whining about how they smash your boob in the vice and it hurts....whaaa...whaaa. Here's how it goes for me vs. you;
  • The poor gal running the machine always takes a look at my naked front as I disrobe like 'Oh Sh*t! A boobless one!'
  • Yes, don't tell me you've not noticed the smile of appreciation she gives you.
  • Then, with me close to the machine, she takes forever and struggles to get it lined up exactly right as she knows this will be critical in a moment.
  • You get near the machine and she just makes sure that the shelf is below your boob...hopefully not at your knees (OK, I'm jealous...I hope that it's at least at your belly button).
  • Now comes the fun part...getting 'no boob' onto the clear shelf. Step up to the machine and prepare to be dazzled and amazed! ...or is that mauled and mangled? She starts at my waist (where she just spotted, with extreme delight, my extra 'fat girl' belly skin) and yanks upward then forward (like my skin is Silly Putty!) onto the shelf (umm Oww!). She lets go and *poof*...the skin snaps back...then falls back to my belly...gravity (so not my fault).... Now she takes a hard look at me and I can see she's gearing up for the challenge...Uh Oh. She grabs my 'skin' extra hard (OK, now she's got the nipple as she's hoping that will give her some semblance of a boob on the shelf), pushes my back forward against the machine so my ribs are now pressing inward against my lungs, and yanks my boob forward so hard my panni is now on the shelf.
  • You...she has you step forward and then raises the shelf under your giant boob up until it's sitting on the shelf like the boob of a perky 16 year old's (you're enjoying the moment).
  • Now comes the vice...the other clear 'shelf' above my boob (that I thought was just a higher shelf for a very perky patient) is not a 'shelf' at all! It's now being lowered onto my upper ribs...then pinching downward onto my 'nipple'...OWWW! Just when I think my ribs are going to snap she stops the vice. Oh if it had only ended there, but no, she's teasing me for putting her through all this as she says (with just a little too much enthusiasm) 'Just a little more!'...the vice starts downward again...then stops...then starts...then finally stops...I'm screaming in my head...DOUBLE OWW! My head is now pointing downward as she's given me a reverse face lift and my deflated double chin is now pulled tight on my chest. As I'm looking down, I take a gander through the clear vice at my BOOB! OMG! I try to smile (but my face is now pulled downward so taunt that I'm frozen in a permanent frown). HEY, I HAVE A HUGE BOOB! For the first time I can't see my feet, not because of a giant belly, but because of my (one) GIANT BOOB! OK, it's paper thin horizontally, but I don't care...I have to find a silver lining somewhere in this little shop of horrors.
  • You...she lowers the vice an inch onto the top of your giant say 'ouch' (out loud) and she raises it a little.
  • She tells me not to breath (Who the frick can BREATH?!? Can't she see my LUNG is now in the vice!), as the now giant boob may snap back out of the vice if I do, and then we'd have to start over. Start OVER?!!! I'm now hoping if it does 'snap back' that it will be with such force that I'd sail backward into that wall protecting her from the 'rays' and take her out!
  • She tells you to breath normally.
  • I think I hear her talking, and about the point that I'm ready to black out, the top of the vice begins raising. Her voice comes in clearer now, "...done, you can step back now." Ahh, sweet relief as my head snaps back up and my now super stretched extra belly skin falls down to my knees. And then I hear it. Five words that brought tears to my eyes "And now, the other side!"
  • She asks you to roll your giant boob off the shelf and place the other one gently on.

I wish I had taken a pic of the giant red 'V' on the upper ribs of my chest when I stumbled out of the room whimpering. I'm seriously thinking of getting a boob job now. Get your mammogram! If I can, you can...they save lives!
DD and I went to the ballet together last night. Fun for us as she used to dance competitively through HS, so it was something we really enjoyed doing! OK, terrible pic (my hair looked way better than this as I used a 'bump it' LOL), but she was running late so I only had time for one before we left her place.

And here we are in our seats after running through the pouring rain!
Happy Weekend all!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

2/24/11 Two Years, Four Months Ago...

*Post Deleted For Lap Band Book

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

2/23/11 Extra-Long

We had a great extra-long weekend. We had an easy trip out as the sun was shining and the snow was almost all melted. We stayed with DH's sister/family and just relaxed, did some crafting with the girls, and visited. DH's parents live about 30 min. away and we talked a lot about their upcoming move to a retirement condo (a double like my parents moved to). At least they haven't started building their phase yet so we have about 1.5 years to recover from my parents move before another 'big move' begins. They took us to their Club (an old DuPont mansion is the Clubhouse) for dinner Sunday night:
We left fairly early on Monday and coming back through the mountains on the turnpike we ran into the deepest fog I've ever been in. We were afraid we'd get rear ended if we slowed down too much, so it was a delicate balance driving less than 40mph with flashers on (and there was no pulling over to wait this out...just get down the other side of the mountain). We were white-knuckling it for awhile and I was helping to 'spot' for DH as I leaned forward (yeah, like that would help) and bugged my eyes out. Here's a pic after it cleared a little, but even here you can only see a few car lengths ahead.
Thank goodness we left early as about 1/2 hour from home the rain, then snow started and it was accumulating fast. By morning we had about 10 inches on the ground. School was cancelled yesterday due to all the snow, so it was an EXTRA-long weekend.

I've got a physical this morning (and DS2's is this afternoon) with my PCP Doc and I haven't seen him since my visit with him in 2008 when I first discussed the LB (I saw his CRNP's for all my LB visits). I'll remind you that he didn't give me the warm fuzzies about getting the LB then, so I'm super curious to see what he says today. As promised, I'll ask him about long-term use of a PPI for reflux (no, I haven't started using my Nexium again).

The scale is very slowly moving (just as it should be this close to my maintenance weight) and I'm seeing the 150's again some days...sweet Goddess of Restriction! Let's hope I'm back to stay!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

2/17/11 It's A Beautiful Day In The Neighborhood...

I've finally done it! I've met my first Blogger friends in person! My Pittsburgh neighbors!
Here we are at lunch today...the lovely Judi and the beautiful Lee Ann (and OMG her youngest was there and has the most beautiful big dark baby make you melt!).

We were talking about how we started our blogs and how we found each other...I remember back when I started my blog on LBT (before I really knew what a blog was) and I thought it was just a spot on LBT for me to keep a little journal. I was so surprised to soon find friends there that I instantly had something in common with (on the scary internet of all places!)...our weight battles are such a connecting and bonding tie to each other.

Having only met one LBer before in person (a nurse at my PCP...side note: Do you ever wish you could ask others in your surgeon's waiting room if they have a Band? My surgeon did all kinds of laproscopic surgeries though, so it was hard to guess who even had WLS...I was afraid I'd offended the appendix patient's by asking LOL.), it was great to finally meet Judi and thank her, as her blog was one that I had poured over when I started researching the LB (she's the perfect model for a textbook LB complications, no unfills, no Gallbladder out even...she's worked her Band perfectly...I, on the other hand...well, as my friend says 'It all happens to you so you can write about it for everyone else!'...Oh well.). Oh, and please send all your good vibes and prayers to Lee Ann today that her approval will come through! These ladies are as fantastic in person as on their blogs and it was so fun to meet them...let's do it again soon!

On to other news...

Urologist Specialist check up today (yes, I was in the stirrups before going to lunch...yay)...and what did the Nurse and then my Doc want to talk about? LB of course. Last time I saw them I was about 60 lbs. down and today they were each full of compliments and questions. The nurse had lots of questions about exercise, as she told me that I looked 'so toned for losing that much weight'...LOL...the sweater tunic hides the truth. The Doc was mostly interested in why this worked so well for me (vs. my diets) and what health changes I've seen...lots of questions as she explained she 'wants to know more so she can recommend it to patients'. She also said that she's never met anyone who's said their WL improved their incontinence...mine hasn't changed, but then the med she put me on had taken care of my issues before LB surgery.

We're off to Philly tomorrow evening to stay with DH's sister/family (they have 2 kids about my kids ages) for the long weekend...DS1 can't go as he has a charity event this weekend at PSU ('Thon'), but DD is driving herself and meeting us there (she doesn't have Monday off and will come back early Sun).

We need to get out there as we haven't seen DH's parents in awhile (remember, they had to cancel vacation with us this past summer...her hip). DH's sis says they've stopped driving at night, so I'm not sure if they're up to driving out to us anymore or not, we'll's hard to find time for us all to be together and make the trip, now that the 5 teen/older grandkids are going every which way with schools/jobs, so we'll have to grab moments when we can, like this.

Have a great weekend all...enjoy this heat wave (60's here YAY!)! Happy President's Day!

Monday, February 14, 2011

2/14/11 Ode To My Band

*Post Deleted for Book
I love you all! Happy Valentine's Day!!!

Sunday, February 13, 2011

2/13/11 Mini BOOBs Pittsburgh and big BOOBs Chicago

Although I've tried to schedule meet up's with other LBers several times (across the country and across the state)...not for lack of trying, but things never quite aligned. Finally, this week I get to meet a couple of local ladies!!!

First, in case you haven't heard (or have been living under a rock here in Blogger), last year was the first annual trip/get together for LBed Bloggers. The group is called 'BOOBs'; Band Of Outrageous Babes, and the planners have already started working on this year's trip. I didn't make last year's trip (was with my extended family in Cols.), but I'm planning to attend this let's plan on meeting there!

I missed the earlier announcements this week, but after catching up, here's the basics:
-Weekend of Sept. 30 - Oct. 2 (make sure you arrive by afternoon on Friday as the Friday night get-together was their 'favorite event' last year)
-Location is the same - Downtown Chicago

You can read up on last year's event (get ideas on costs/events) and this year's plans (and you can follow the blog) HERE.

One thing I want to address is that I believe (you can ask the planners for clarification though) I remember seeing last year that the event is only open to LBed Bloggers (correct me if I'm wrong)...meaning you need to have setup a blog on Blogger...I believe (my thoughts, not theirs) they want others to be able to get to know you so that we have some connection to each other as the event is mostly a social one. I know I've got some long-time followers who don't blog, or only blog on LBT. But no worries if you're interested in I swear it's safe and simple to set-up a Blog here (you don't have to spend time making fancy pages or pics) and no one says you have to be a prolific blogger (many here aren't)...and you've got many months for others to get to know don't miss've got big BOOB's, so be there (and hey, they're letting me be a big BOOB...flat chest and all)!

OK, on to a Mini-BOOBs event!

This Thursday for lunch in downtown Pittsburgh! If you can get here, come and join us (send me an email and I'll tell you when and where)! The fabulous Judi and I have been trying to get together since this past summer, so I'm thrilled to finally meet her (Judi's is one of the first blogs I read way back when I was Googling 'Lap Band and Pittsburgh' and our kid's lives have been running some parallel courses...I'm just following in her shoes...and I want ALL her cute shoes!). I'm so excited that Lee Ann (and her little baby boy, yay!) is also able to join us...she's been doing such a great job jumping through all her hoops since this summer and we've got our finger's and toes crossed that her approval will work out with insurance.

So YAY to my first LBer meet up! And if any of you are ever in the area, let's meet!

2/13/11 My Valentine & Post Fill Day 5

*Portion of Post Deleted

On another note...we went to a Valentine's Day couples party at one of my GF's houses (old neighbor's of ours that now live about 30 min. away). She had about 75 people and a spread of food everywhere (and a chef's station with made to order crab cakes and different pasta dishes). We had a blast and I did fine with tiny amounts of food during the evening (tortellini, cheese hunks, chicken dish, and even meatballs).

She asked each couple to send pics of themselves during their dating years (fun idea), which she printed up and had on display boards. As expected when anyone sees old pics of my DH, his got the most reaction from everyone who knows's why (enjoy!)...

Here we are in 1978 shortly after meeting...

A few years later...

The giant glasses were in...and barely a moustache now (No, not on me!...I was busy moving toward the 'big hair')...

And here's how he came back from Geology field camp one summer in college...I didn't recognize him when he got back (all the Geology majors had beards...well, except the women). And OMG what was I thinking with the perm?!

And here's our engagement picture as we were finishing college (and why my kids say 'You married Sasquatch!'). Our friends last night were calling him 'Mountain Man' (and asking me who my 'first husband' was LOL).

Here I am ready to go last night in my Valentine pink.
Here I am with my Valentine (and I had to leave Tucker in...looks like ghost cat!)...DH needs to get better at lining up timer pics and remembering he's a lot taller than me LOL.

And here I am at the party...with some friends...that have obviously had too much to drink, as you can see by their fuzzy faces. And why do I always pick short friends? I'm an amazon compared to my petite friends and the 4" heels didn't help.

Friday, February 11, 2011

2/11/11 A Valentine Letter and Love Poem

Dearest Cell Phone,

I gave DD my new phone upgrade and rescued you from her butterfinger hands which gave you all those awful scars...I adopted you, and THIS is the thanks I get?! Didn't I buy you a sleek, new, leather case to keep you warm this winter so you could heal? Didn't I hang it on the OUTSIDE of my 'Mary Poppins' purse so you wouldn't suffocate with everything-and-the-kitchen-sink I keep in there. Haven't I carefully tended to your every need whenever you ring me? EVEN when you embarrass me (who can forget that incident in the movie theater...I had to send you to the cell phone manners class after that!)?!!

OK, so I did loan you to DD that night she stayed over to use as an alarm clock...but her cell phone was dead (see, that would have been your fate had I not adopted you!) and there was no alarm clock in her now stripped down room here. She swears to me she left you on the floor (once again, I have NEVER left you on the floor!) outside my room when she left for work that morning.

OK, so I didn't come upstairs to find you myself as I should...instead I asked DS2 (who was already up there) to bring you down (he now says I'm the one who made him an accessory to the crime), but in my defense, I thought he was a responsible cell phone user now (after all, he's the only one of my kids that even uses a case!). He swears he brought you to me 'somewhere in the family room', but I'll swear in court that you weren't there when said incident allegedly happened (I don't think I was even there...but I can't swear to that...HOW CAN I if he never gave you to me...there was NO such incident!).

While under interrogation, DD confessed that the night of the incident she had muted you, except the alarm, thus making you unable to cry out for me. We later brought DS2 in for interrogation and he confessed to calling you a million times under the guise of trying to find you...thus speeding up your silent death.

You'll be glad to know I've filed kidnapping charges against both offenders...they're obviously in cahoots and had planned this very carefully. My plea's to said alleged (yeah, right!) kidnappers to bring you home to me fell on deaf ears.

We've sent out search parties daily to no avail. It's now been TWO weeks and you haven't shown up. There hasn't even been a ransom note (although DS2 just asked me last night if there would be a reward if he finds it...isn't that called extortion?)!

I refuse to believe that you're dead and not coming home to me.

Cell phone, please come back to me! I miss you so! *sniff, sniff*

-Ode To My Cell Phone, By BG-

Cell Phone, I love you with all my heart
I'd give you an app to make you fart

Cell Phone, Although there have been others
you were my favorite, your flip top covers

Cell Phone, you were older than my friend's phones
But they were just jealous, because my cell owns

Cell Phone, When I was bored you gave me games
And who can forget, all those numbers and names

Cell Phone, We used to text all day
And during the night, you brightened my way

Cell Phone, I love you more than fills
I never minded, paying your bills

Cell Phone, we were such a team
They tore us apart, and made me scream

Cell Phone, it was only a loan
And I don't know how, I'll go on alone

Cell Phone, I need candy because I'm so sad
But food is out, or I'll yak bad

Cell Phone, "Come Back" is my plea
Cell Phone, Oh Cell Phone, You complete me


P.S. Doesn't our Verizon plan have some new fangled techy phone in their shop now?

(Yes, I'll be sending one to my Band too!)

Thursday, February 10, 2011

2/10/11 Post Fill Day 2; Spew and Burn

*Post deleted for Book

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

2/9/11 My Favorite Four Letter Word…F-I-L-L!

*Post Deleted For Lap Band Book

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

2/8/11 1st Surgeon Appointment

Today's the big day! I've finally got a new Doc and I'm going in for my first 'visit'! Yes, I'm having deja vu too...almost exactly two years ago today I went in for my first visit with my surgeon and now I'm right back there again!

Catching you up: first one Doc left my practice for another in town, then the second Doc (last one in a two Doc practice) left the state for another practice, then my hospital announced they had two Docs from a practice in town that would be coming, then they cancelled my fill appointment (for the second time) and announced that two other Docs from another hospital were coming soon...and then I waited...for them to call with the new they promised...

A month later (last week) I called. Since only one of the new Doc's is covering the 'LB Patients' and since he's still got his old practice at the other hospital, their first opening at my hospital was April 4...yes, that's right...I've been waiting for a fill since the beginning of October and they couldn't get me in until April 4.

.*Portion of Post Deleted for Lap Band Book
P.S. DD made the Pittsburgh newspaper an art opening this weekend with a date:

Monday, February 7, 2011

2/7/11 There Is No Joy In Steelerville

Well, the widely held belief (in our pea brains) that our move to Pittsburgh was good luck for the Steelers winning the Super Bowl (twice in the last ten years)...well, that all came to a screeching end last night. Despite my twirling the Terrible Towel until my arm was sore...and despite my taking a gulp of beer after every great play (yes, there actually were a lot of those, trust me)...the Steeler's lost (in case you're away on Mars and didn't hear it yet).

We spent the evening at a neighbor's party and had a blast...and I found out that my old Steeler t-shirt was an XL and the only 'gold' in my closet is one yellow shirt (the black, I was obese...need I say more?). Here I am on arrival with the towel...and the beer (and my hostess actually has a face, a pretty one).

I tried to console the Steeler fans with 'It was such a great game!' (which it WAS)...and 'Without those three turnovers, we would have easily won!'

Apparently I'm NOT officially an accepted Steeler fan yet (it was suggested that I need to take a class before I can become one)...a Steeler fan would not be saying these things...they would actually be bleeding Black and Gold at the loss...and they were...bleeding Black and Gold.

I wonder if I should have offered them my Terrible Towel to mop it up?
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