Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Losing Time and Getting a Fill.

Time has flown by and I have found it almost impossible to get enough time for myself, time to spend with you guys. Now, this is mostly my fault as I went to NYC and then have been playing catch up with work (and play) the past week or so. My trip was awesome - though probably not as profoundly fabulous as the lucky ladies who went to Chicago recently. I went to my favorite fancy restaurant (21 Club), shopped in Chinatown, visited Tut before he goes back to Egypt, saw Wicked, and did one heck of a run-through of the MET. Oh, and I did 5th Avenue too; I love Tiffanys. It was a super busy weekend and hard to fit it all in, but I already miss my absolute favorite vacation spot.

Upon returning, I went in for a fill and much to my suprise and delight, my NP was willing to fill me up like a gas tank and go for some agressive treatment. I went up to around 8ccs (a plus of about 2ccs). I have certainly felt it this time around but am still waiting for it all to settle in so I know what the actual restriction will be. While I am worried when all is said and done that it will be too much, I am kind of hoping this agressive move will work. I am a little tired of being a yo-yo on the scale - I WANT TO LOSE! So far I am restricted well when I eat and I can only feel the band pressure at nightime. I hope it stays this way as the restriction/pressure seems doable right now.

I am looking forward to catching up with all of y'all, hearing what crazy antics people got into while in Chicago, and settling back down into a routine. If only I didn't have to do work or study.....

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

A Yummy Award.

I am new to this whole world of blogging but two people have been amazing enough to send me an award, which I am truly honored about. There are three questions associated with this cupcake of a prize.

1.  Answer the question: If you had one chance to go back and change one thing in your life, would you and what would it be?

This is a hard question as I am one of those people who believe that everything in your life comes from your experiences. I love where I am right now and I attribute that to both my good and bad decisions. While I have definitely had my host of awful, awful decisions, actions, and memories, I have come to grips that they are the glue which has made me the stronger person I am today.

If forced to choose a decision I would change, I would have to pick an entire category – men. I have the worst taste in men. Are you moody? Have mommy issues? Unable to commit? Show little to no emotion? – then I am immediately attracted to you. I have turned down a host of men who are upstanding, demonstrative, and - by all objective means - perfect to chase after men who can’t decide whether they really want me or not. I have spent my time on men who do not want the same things as I do and have made me feel terrible for caring so much about them. I could blame one on a freak of nature but after several of these horrible-from-the-start relationships, I have come to the conclusion that it has to be me! Perhaps I sabotage my relationships because I am really not ready for one. Perhaps it is my own fears and self loathing which make me reach out to men that will not make treat me like a princess and a prize. Currently I am coming to grips with this idea and while I will not take back those moody and untenable men of my past, I am looking forward to finding healthier relationships in the future. (As a side note, my college roomies and best friends have instituted a new rule where they have to approve of my man choices should I continue to seek out losers).  

So there, it isn’t really something to change about my past but my answer is really something I have decided to change because of my past. With this I give a firm shout out to all the emotionally stinted men that have inadvertently taught me I deserve something better! 

2.  Pick 6 people and give them this award. You then have to inform the person that they have been selected for the award.

These people have probably already gotten this award (and by probably I mean many times over) but I thought it would be nice to give a shout out to some of the women I follow and who have been kind and supportive of me. I find all these women, plus so many more, truly moving and motivational. Here goes:

Bonnie (http://wishingandhopingandprayingforaband.blogspot.com/)

Grace (http://graces-fat-chance.blogspot.com/)

Lap Band Gal (http://lapbandgalsjourney.blogspot.com/)

Liz (http://talesfromtheband.blogspot.com/)

Tina (http://tinasweight-lossjourney.blogspot.com/)

3. You have to thank the person (people) who gave you the award.

Thanks so much Pamela (http://lessthanfat.blogspot.com/) and Amanda (http://lifeofahopefulloser.blogspot.com/) for thinking I am worthy of any kind of award. I am only a little further (seriously, only a month or so) ahead on this road than you two and I feel like we all have great times and great accomplishments ahead. I admire both of you for taking the chance, taking charge, and joining this virtual group of women. I have found it so empowering in my short month or so online. Good luck Amanda on your impending surgery and good luck Pamela on your first fill - I cannot wait to share in your future successes.

Monday, September 13, 2010

My Band Gets a Tarot Reading.

Thanks everyone for the birthday wishes. It is nice to know that I have a whole new set of friends to share this next year with. My birthday weekend went very well. For the first time in many years I weighed less than the year before so my band has already played a big part in what this year will hold for me. It is wonderful to think I will continue to weigh less – it’s like a burden lifting, both literally and figuratively.

I had people over to my place for my birthday night and then kept up a birthday tradition with one of my friends earlier today. For the past couple of years we have gone to see this local psychic on my birthday for both tarot and palm readings. I have always played around with this stuff, mostly with the mindset that a tarot reading is like playing MASH, only for grown-ups. So, one of my quirks is to visit this sketchy lady we call "Madame" to hear our futures and giggle over the cards. Not that we put huge amounts of faith in what this woman says, but it always makes for an extremely fun outing. I would have to say that she is a really good people reader and always has a bit to say that kicks us in the rear and a bit to say which gives us hope. Afterwards we have breakfast tacos and tease each other about our supposed futures. Really, it is one of my favorite girly outings – I highly suggest it to everyone at least once.

As for my reading this year, it was very positive. I got a lot of cards that represented growing opportunities and fun things ahead. Most of my cards were about looking forward, not back. My favorite of these was the Queen of Cups as she is the “Miss Independent” of the tarot set – a person I would like to think of myself as being like. My psychic Madame suggested that I had spent too much time in the past dealing with others’ feelings and that I should take some well deserved time for myself (seriously, she is a good people reader). This resonated with me as I feel like the past year has been burdened with family issues that I had to take charge of, putting my own desires and goals in the background. This especially hit home as the only down part of my birthday weekend was my sister’s sour mood at my party. Long story short, my sister is the biggest issue I have had to deal with in the past as she has upset others and run amok with her personal issues affecting our whole family. I recently told her to figure her own crud out which I feel guilty about but am also glad about as I no longer feel burdened with being her babysitter. I am sure I will expound on my relationship with my sister further but…back to the tarot reading.

I also got the lovers card (insert huge amount of jokes and giggles at it portrays two naked folks) which suggests that I will either start a relationship or take an existing one to a new level; we will see where that one ends. As for my palm reading, my Madame made a big deal about how I had a journey line that wrapped around on both sides of my hand; she said it was rare, special, and meant good things in the future. She said my journey, heart, and fate lines make a pyramid which shows a strong self and determined path. She said good things are on their way and I should stop worrying so much. All and all, it was just kind of nice for a complete stranger to say congrats on getting your stuff together because there are great things ahead of you. So there you have it, my birthday and psychic adventure are in line with my feelings about this new year – I think it will be one full of new adventures, fun relationships, and lots of personal growth. Let the year of ME begin!

Friday, September 10, 2010

It’s My Birthday and I’ll Blog if I Want To.

Today I turn 31. I expect this will be a year of great change and wonderful achievements and I can’t wait for it to all happen. To commemorate the glorious day of my birth I thought I would spend some time making myself goals for the upcoming year.  [As a side note, this is a tremendously Virgo-esque type of activity; I fit my astrological sign so well!]  First, I thought of making weight goals but since I am a lifelong fat girl, I have no real idea as to what a good goal weight should be. Seriously, according to BMI I should weigh 130 lbs. to be normal; the closest I ever got to that was 135 lbs. and I was a stinking size 4. I refuse to believe that a size used by runway models is the “normal weight” I should shoot for.  Since I could not derive a number weight I think should be my goal, I have decided to instead list 10 (because it’s a great number) NSVs I plan to accomplish this year. Here they are, in no particular order:

  1. I will pay down my credit card debt with the money I save on food. 
  2. I will walk a half marathon at the same pace as my friends (heck, I will walk a half marathon).
  3. I will wear heels out on the town for a whole night without thinking my feet hurt. 
  4. I will fit into booths at restaurants and desks at school.
  5. I will shop for clothes at J.Crew and Anthropologie (because the world needs one more preppy person).
  6. I will go to a yoga class and be able to keep up with the super skinny/flexible instructor. 
  7. I will put myself out there and network at a professional conference with confidence.
  8. I will flirt shamelessly with a man at a bar, have him buy me a drink, and then ditch him without regret. 
  9. I will post a picture on Facebook that I am willing - no excited - to tag myself in.
  10. I will dance in public without fear of others watching. Maybe I will even dance in the rain.
Happy birthday to me and happy Friday to everyone else!






Wednesday, September 8, 2010

My Sizes Get a Graph.

I don’t necessarily remember my weight at every age but I can remember the sizes of the clothes that I wore. As such, I decided to graph my sizing over time - my adult years - in order to see where I have grown and shrunk to visualize my journey with weight thus far. Below is that graph (sorry about the smallish size, I couldn't get it any bigger with my minimal blogging skills). There are some letters by certain periods of growth and reduction that have explanation below the chart.

A – I left high school at a size 14 but gained a little more than the freshman 15 lbs. in my first year of college. In my defense, I went to a private school with really good cafeteria food.

B – What started out as me focusing on weight loss became a cycle of working out and fasting that consisted mostly of diet pills and liquor. Added to this was a period of binging and purging that was very effective for weight loss but not so good for me. I was a size 4 for about 2 seconds in which I wore a bikini at my sorority’s beach formal (in the dark after everyone was too blitzed to notice) then quickly started gaining back weight.

C – I, of course, gained all the weight back plus more when I stopped throwing up and started eating again. Looking back at this time I was happy and healthy (and really drunk as it was my senior year in college). I actually give credit to my drinking and partying life style (of the time) for helping me get past my prior bulimic phase as it takes eating real food to drink like a champion. I also stopped working out during this time period which, in retrospect, was a very bad idea.

D – I stopped drinking and partying to start on my Master’s degree and gained weight while hunkering down with the books and projects. I also gained weight during my first real career type job where I learned that being an adult wasn’t as much fun as everyone had hoped for.

E – I’d love to say I took initiative and went on a diet, but this time marks when my father was sick and passed away. I was too drugged with antidepressants, migraine medicines, and tranquilizers to eat so I lost weight.

F – This was my latest jump in weight and corresponds to my decision to get banded. This was also my highest size (26) at 283 lbs.

G – Starting out at 31, which I will turn in a few days, I am a size 24 and hoping to start a new trend with a negative slope (for the math lovers - I am a statistics nerd by the way).  I don't want to go dratsically down in sizes as I did when I was unhealthy but I do hope to return at leat to a size 14 (my 18 year old level).

Monday, September 6, 2010

The Lap Band is Like Having Braces All Over Again.

So, as I was thinking over my latest fill (#2 for anyone counting) I started to think of how a fill reminded me of getting my braces tightened as a child. Upon further consideration, I found that there were a lot more similarities to be found in my metaphor. First, the actual band is like braces where both their goals are to reshape some area using restriction and compression of a specified area. Unlike braces though, gastric bands are permanent so there is no getting it removed in time for summer camp. Both braces and bands have to be supervised by a professional with semi-regular visits for calibrating the bands (this being the fill). When filled, or tightened for braces, both create pain and swelling that makes you have to stick to the liquids and solids for a bit of time.

Speaking of the swelling and pain, I was excited to have it this time around. This may make me a bit of a masochist, but the pain felt good and reminded me I was on track with my goals. It also helped me to get over the small plateau of 263 that I had been stuck at for seemingly forever. The first fill I had did nothing (seriously, for a while I was concerned that instead of a fill they had simply taken everything out of the band as there was no pain and NO restriction). The pain went away and I have a little less restriction than I would like, but it is good to know that, like pain signaling my teeth moving, I was on the right track with my weight.

Back to the bigger metaphor though as I still have more ways braces and bands are alike. Some people are so excited to get braces while others dread the day – this is not dependent on how screwed up their teeth are or how heavy they weigh. When confronted with braces, some choose to show it off with fancy colored rubber-bands so that everyone can see while others (including my teenage self) get boring grey every time. This part reminds me of how differently people think when it comes to telling friends and family members. Lastly, bands and braces are similar in the way people need or don’t need them. Some people are born with beautiful straight teeth that don’t need any help from orthodontia while others aren’t so lucky. This is like weight gains where those that do need help most often are the ones that were born this way. It reminds me that the band is a fantastic tool that helps correct naturally occurring problems, much like crooked or misshaped teeth, and that we should rejoice in the ability to use it.

There is only one stark difference with my braces/band metaphor that I do see (and it is a big one). While braces makes people smile less, from what I have learned so far the band makes people smile more. That’s a really good thing.

Monday, August 30, 2010


Hey there everybody. Thanks so much for all the new friends and support! It is nice to feel that I am not alone in this journey. As a new "bandster" (is that what we are called) I am a little confused by the lingo and would love a crash course in all the acronyms and euphemisms people use. Right now I feel like the old Luddite that doesn't know what OMG or LOL means only this time there are even more specific terms to learn.

Some acronyms I have come across thus far:
  1. BOOBS: Band Of Outrageous Babes (apparently a kickin' group of gals who are going to party away in Chicago soon - I am jealous!)
  2. NSV: Non Scale Victory (a term to describe goals and achievements that are related to weight loss but not the actual loss)
  3. BM: Am I right to assume this is just a nicer way of saying poo?

Additions (via comments and further blog readings):
  1. PB: a Productive Burp, one that happens to bring up the food you just ate
  2. NUT: Nutritionist
  3. TOM: Time Of Month, a rather manly moniker for Aunt Flo's monthly visitation
  4. ONEderland: a fantastic name for getting below 200 lbs.
  5. FUPA: Fat Upper Public Area, a nicer way of saying all my tummy junk that makes my jeans look bad
  6. WLS: Weight Loss Surgery
  7. NP: Nurse Practitioner

What am I missing?