Wednesday, September 28, 2011

It has certainly been a week...

I've been only doing okay.  I was at 42.8  lbs lost today, which means a grand total of 2.8 lbs in a week.  Its good, its a little more disappointing than the whole 30 some odd pounds in a month, but I need to stop thinking like that.  My weight isn't coming off as quickly as other people's right now, because I'm not able to workout like I want.
I have a problem.  I like to go big or go home.  I start walking on the treadmill, and then end up running 3 miles off and on.  Even if I just walk, half the time, I end up walking 3-6 miles at a time.  I just start feeling soooo good, and start busting it.  I am physically unable to do that right now.  It will literally exhaust me.  I have trouble right now...if I do a lot ONE day, the very next day (and sometimes even for two days after).  Its really bothersome.  I know and realize that a big part of it, is that I'm still healing in some ways...I'm also still dealing with a blood clot.  It can take 3-6 months for this thing to go away.  I'm still in pain a lot of times, it really sucks.  My INR levels aren't where they are supposed to be, so that may have something to do with it.  I truly have no clue.  I will see my hematologist (at least I think that's what he does) on Friday, and I will bring it up and ask about it.  Maybe things need to be checked out again.  I will also ask my surgeon, but my next appointment with him isn't until a few weeks from now.  I'll definitely need to speak to him about my pain meds though, I don't have nearly enough to last me the next two weeks.  =/

This whole entire process has been so much harder than it seems.  I'm still struggling with how to eat, what to eat, how much to eat, how much not to eat.  A lot of it, is really tiring.

Yesterday, I had a long day, I woke up early to wake up my girls, and stepped in two puddles of PEE.  At some point when I was hospitalized, one or both of my dogs peed in my hallway that leads to my kids rooms.  I've been doing everything in my power to get that smell up.  I've used a carpet deodorizer, I've used baking soda, water, my carpet cleaner 3x, I've even tried febreeze.  Nothing was working.  The ammonia/dog pee/kennel smell hits me like a ton of bricks.  Then I woke up to step in it again, yesterday morning.  Of course, the dogs are just marking their territory, or smelling where they peed before and what not.  But I was NOT a happy camper.  Not in the least.  I scrubbed, I blotted, I mixed ingredients to try to get more of it up.  I read soaking the spot in water will help dilute it, so I soaked, I blotted more, I went through two towels.  Then I showered, and got ready for my WLS support group at the hospital.  I haven't been since having surgery, and now that I do feel quite a bit better than I did right after the surgery, I decided to go.  I was late because it took me an extra 20 minutes to follow someone to a parking spot...then I think I accidentally stole it out from under someone...oops!  I didn't mean to, and normally, I would have pulled out once I realized what I did, but I was already 10 minutes late, and I really wanted to attend the meeting.  Luckily, I got there, and barely had a seat, but I got one, and was of course, the last one to enter in there.  It was a good meeting though, and it really helped me to talk to other people going through similar situations.  The camaraderie is fantastic.  Plus, I am now one of those people that can help answer the Pre-Op's questions.  I need to make sure I'm still going to these meetings.  It really felt good to chat with other women that are going or have gone through all of this.  It also helped to answer questions to help out others.
Afterwards, I went to our commissary.  Its a military grocery store for my civilian friends.  I got my bill up to a whopping 200 bucks, before watching that number inch its way back down to 166ish.  I love coupons.  Still, I realized I need to go through my coupons again, I've been really slacking on my couponisms with how I feel and everything.  I spend so much time, organizing, cutting, sorting, and re-organizing, and I like to put it off at times.  Either way, I saved 34 dollars on my bill, and to be honest, its not nearly as good as I could do usually, but my grocery bills are changing.  I am buying organic eggs (they have more vitamins, which I need), I'm buying more expensive, leaner cuts of meat, organic turkey, or all WHITE breast turkey meat (not all turkey is created equal, just sayin'), chicken sausage, and cheeses.  I focus on protein more than anything.  I'm not supposed to eat very much greens, even though I do still eat some...I can't help it.  I love vegetables/fruits, and when I have to stay away from them, it stinks.  Plus I feel better when I eat them.  Still, I stick with protein first, then I go for the other small portions on my plate.  So my bill is going up.  My kids are going to be eating much better because of this as well.  I bought some flax, oatmeal, dark chocolate cookies, that have less carbs than your average cookie, and more protein, but it wasn't cheap.  I refuse to let my kids eat white bread anymore.  Wheat and I mean WHOLE wheat bread is so much better for the kids.  I WAS buying white for the girls, only because its cheaper, but I will start home-making my own bread if I have to...I am not going to be keeping foods that aren't good for us.  I will keep foods that may not be the best thing out there, but still are healthier alternatives to your average cookie, or chip.  For instance...the oatmeal, flax, dark chocolate cookie...I wasn't a huge fan, so I gave them to my girls, guess what...they LOVE them.  I can find something similar to home make for them, now that I know that they will like it.  Anyway, I'm veering off course....
After the grocery excursion, I was already exhausted.  I came home to clean my house as much as possible before my FIL arrived.  He was just passing through, so he took us out to The Olive Garden.  Let me just tell you...there really aren't a lot of healthy choices at restaurants in general.  You can ALWAYS find something that is a good alternative though.  I ordered Apricot grilled chicken with veggies, asparagus, broccoli and tomatoes.  I also got either a salad or a soup...I chose my absolute favorite soup (Zuppa Tuscana anyone?), I ended up eating the doesn't taste the same as it used to anymore.  =(  I should have gone with the Minestrone, but I wanted to indulge a little.  I did NOT have any bread, and that was an accomplishment worth mentioning.  So I got my meal, ate a half piece of chicken (they give you two smaller grilled flattened chicken breasts), I also ate most of my tomatoes, and I tip of an asparagus.  It was delicious, and I was STUFFED to the gills.  We came home, the girls kept grandpa up for a while longer, and finally we all went to bed.
This morning, after waking the girls up, I went into the kitchen and made some italian seasoned eggs.  I broke 3 eggs, 4 egg whites, added salt and pepper, and some garlic herb seasoning, then added mozzarella cheese.  They turned out well.  The girls loved them...I only had a bite, as I wasn't very hungry.  The girls and Grandpa had the eggs, and a banana, and then they went to school.  Grandpa was on his way, and I was just plain POOPED.
So I've sat in my recliner all day today, catching up on TV shows, and just feeling plain tired, worn out, exhausted, whatever you want to call it.  I've been craving sugar like crazy today, hence the cookie....then I was craving pasta (I haven't craved pasta, at all, since was the first day), craving all things bad for me.  Probably due to me being tired, could also be my meds acting up, who knows.  Whatever the reason, I have been grazing all day, and that is a HUGE no-no.  I'm going to have to figure this out still.  I had another bite of my eggs this morning, and didn't feel that they sat well in my stomach, so I threw away the leftovers (eggs don't keep well), so I started the cravings for sugar.  I ate a Kashi didn't help that craving go away, as a matter of fact, it probably just made it worse, still I had to wait a lot longer to eat something else.  Ate some string cheese, again it didn't help, some buffalo flavored grilled chicken strips.  It helped me feel full, but the craving was horrendous.  So what did I do?  I got a POPTART.  WTF!!!!???
I took off the sides, and ate part of the middle, and threw the rest away.  My sugar craving was definitely satisfied, and surprisingly I didn't feel completely awful after eating it. body needed more sugar.  I have no clue, but I did briefly feel better, before the sugar high wore off, and then I just felt even more tired than before.  Note to self:  FRUIT can work, lol.
So I slipped today, it was a rather big slip, and I will pay for it, but I feel better now....=/
So after that, I had more grilled chicken, more cheese, some cheese its (about 8), oh and whole grain cheese its btw, lol.  I thought maybe my body was wanting carbs for whatever reason, usually if you can't kick a craving, its your bodies way of trying to TELL you something.  I will NOT be indulging again, especially in poptarts...I don't even really like them.  But sugar was calling and it was the first thing I saw...another note to self: make kids eat them, and never buy them again, lol.  I also drank some crystal light protein drinks, water, lots of water...I peed a lot today (that's good).
I did not weigh myself today.  The day before, I was at 218.4.  Tomorrow, I will weigh myself, then I will come to my blog, and tell you my weight.  I'm going to be paying for the extra carbs and the extra sugar today, so my hopes aren't too high for another loss.  I feel like I'm almost sabotaging myself.  By my 2 month surgiversary, I want to hit the 45 lbs lost mark.  I'm only about 2.6 lbs away from that, however, I won't be able to weigh myself that day, and I'll have to go with the next day's weigh in.
This weekend, I'm taking my kids to a fair.  We will be doing a lot of walking.  They have food...lots of fried foods, and they also have smoked turkey legs.  My plan is to munch on that turkey leg for lunch, and I'm going to bring a zip lock bag and pull it off, and snack on it the rest of the day if I have to.  Yes, I'm going to be THAT person, lol.  There is NO way, I can eat a whole leg, so zip lock will just have to come to the rescue.  Mostly, I'm going to shop, to check out the neat things they have, and to maybe ride on the rides, and take some awesome pictures of my kids, and family.  Overall, I'm hoping for a good weekend.  I'm bringing my taco soup, my Mom will be making some taco's and as long as I stick with the meat and the cheese, I'll be good to go.

So now that I've written a book, thank you for getting so far, and actually reading this...I probably should have broken into more than one post.  Instead, I rambled, and I must say, my blog helps me get things out, and I'm extremely happy for that.  It really helps me to deal with my emotions, whether or not anyone reads this, I know that I'm getting things out, and that is an amazing thing.

Friday, September 23, 2011

A Success, and a Fail

Officially...on Tuesday, I was exactly 221.2.  A grand total of:

GONE!  Poof!
I am now 7 weeks post op...on my way to 8.
Then I got hungry....and lately been feeling more hungry.  Maybe I'm having my TOM issues (I wouldn't know because I haven't had THAT happen for the last 7 weeks, surgery messes with your cycles).  Maybe...I was just hungry.  Either way, I had not one, but TWO Fiber One mini brownies...FAIL!
That isn't a good thing.  Although I will say that they are really yummy and are a great alternative for the real world people, they aren't a great alternative for me right now.  Right now, its all about the protein.  I have had three protein crystal light drinks today, string cheese, sandwich meat, about a 1/2 can of soup, some turkey sausage, and a small slice of sausage from a bbq place nearby.  I had the two small brownies, and have really wanted to carb load today.  I haven't really had much of an issue with carb loading lately, so it all comes at once.  Still, I like to think I did okay.  But I can't be surprised if the scales is quietly cursing me tomorrow morning either.  I need to see the damage.  I also can't celebrate if I've lost.  I need to get back on that pony!

People who have surgeries aren't your average joe people for the most part.  I know I wasn't.  Not in my eating habits at least.  I was and am addicted to food.  Its an addiction that is extremely hard to get out of.  I ate for comfort, out of boredom, I ate when I was feeling lonely, or sad.  It was my go-to comfort.  I have to be very mindful about what I put in my mouth nowadays, and even when I want the comfort.  I had no issues eating those little brownies, I ate them a little at a time.  They do have a lot of fiber in them, and they are much better for me than the average brownie, however, I can't make the excuses I made before I had the surgery.  It isn't okay, especially being only 7 weeks out, to have one or even the TWO that I had.  The food has to be conquered before anything else can be done.  Perhaps its my bodies way of telling me that I need to change something, or my bodies way of telling me that I'm not getting in enough calories.  Whatever the reason, its going to have to stop.  Now.

I really don't want to be that person that fails at this.  I don't want to be the person that is talked about..."oh she had weight loss surgery...its too bad she's gained it all back."  Its my BIGGEST fear.  Like I've said before, I've lost the weight in the past....then I've gained it all back, and most recently, MORE SO.  I'm not going through this *last ditch effort*, so that I can gain this weight back.  I'm ALSO not going through all of this pain (from the blood clots, or whatever else), so that I can have the weight stay on my frame.

I want to be healthy, I want to be happy, I want to play with my kids, and run 5k's again.  Lately, I've been getting more pain, and I'm unsure why.  Maybe the Coumadin isn't at the correct level, I will know more tomorrow about that.  Whatever the case may be, I've been feeling the pain creeping back up, it usually hits me right around 4 or 5 in the evening, and before I go to bed.  I've been taking two percocet pills to get by.  My dr. prescribed me enough for me to taper off to one.  I was able to do one for 2 days.  I thought it was getting better, and unfortunately, I've been feeling a little worse off.  I'm still getting in plenty of protein, and my vitamins to make sure it isn't that.  The only thing I can think is that maybe the Coumadin is failing, or perhaps I ate too much Vitamin K that day....sigh.  The blood clot ordeal isn't over yet, and I still have a long way to go.

Still~medical issues or not, I want to ROCK this sleeve.  I want to start working out, and I find myself getting more tired lately, and feeling the creepings up of the pain.  I don't want to over-do it either.  I don't want the pain, not even a little.  Its all still a learning game for me.  Between my new pouch, my blood clot, my foods, my drinks, and the excessive amount of protein I need every day, I'm still learning, and figuring this whole thing out.

Sometimes, I ask myself if this is all worth it.  Maybe I should just go ahead and EAT that Cinnabon... (lol, KIDDING), but seriously, is this all worth it?  Will it be in the end?  When will I EVER get to goal?  When will I get into ONEderland?  Can I start working out without having pain?  When can I run again?  Ugh...

It can definitely be frustrating.  It gets lonely too.  If I'm lucky, I get to talk to my husband for about an hour a week, and while I'm used to that aspect of my life, my new medical issues just make me want to talk to him more.  I still have a lot of wonderful friends to go to, I still have family to talk to, it isn't the same though.  He knows me better than just about anyone else.  He's the one I want to talk to, and now we are also discussing his impending re-enlistment for indef.  (meaning until he retires for all you civvies out there), we are also discussing what is going to happen when he comes home from his deployment right now.  He will no longer have a job in this company he's apart of, and will have to moved somewhere else on Fort Hood.  This also means that 6 months after he is home...hell, even 3 months after he is home, he could potentially be deployed again for another year.  I can prepare myself for this to happen.  I don't want it to by any means, but its one of those things that sometimes military wives have to be prepared for.  We can only go where the wind takes us, and we were lucky the last two years he was home before this deployment...he was HOME for 2 whole YEARS!!  Since we've been married, we've been LUCKY to have him home for a full year.  Usually he's only been home about 6 months with all of the field times, and schools he has to attend before being deployed again.  So I almost feel like we OWE the Army.  Plus, it will just be us going back to the norm, with the exception that he'll be deployed instead of in school or in the field.  So I have a lot weighing on my mind right now.  I think that is why I turned to the comfort food, and that is why I ate two....and its probably why I'm feeling really hungry right this second as well.  The military life is definitely a stressful life sometimes....

Still, I need to learn to deal with the stress in other ways.  My body will no longer allow me to binge eat (I will literally get sick), but I can still eat things I really shouldn't be eating.  While in the "losing" stages, I need to be extremely mindful of how I'm eating, and what I'm eating.  It is one of the reasons I've started buying organic foods when available (did you know organic eggs, and chickens have more vitamins in them?), I am buying more whole foods when I can (still, the processed brownie was pretty yummy, lol), and I'm also learning to live my life in a totally different way.  I avoid breads, tortilla's (oh how I miss my white flour tortillas), chips, crackers...white starches....I am learning to mend my kids minds to eating nothing but whole wheats, and more vegetables and fruits.  I've always loved fruits and veggies, but its always been way too expensive to buy fresh rather than canned or frozen.  Things are slowly changing.  I find myself LOOKING for high protein, low carb recipes more often.   I even found a protein cookie place...not sure the carbs on it, but it sounds interesting.  I've ordered books upon books to try out new things, but the one thing that is killing me right now, is not having as much fruit and vegetables as I did before.  Like I said, I love my fruit, and I love my veggies.  I'm told to stay away, or eat the exact amount every single day to keep my Coumadin from moving all over the place.  I want to add spinach, and mushrooms, and even salsa to my eggs in the morning...salsa works, mushrooms would work, spinach is really high in vitamin k, and I should probably stay away from that.  I can't have my coffee in the morning, mostly because I love to dump a crap top of sugary fatty creamer into it.  Still...I'm learning.  Small changes can make a world of difference, and I'm slowly coming around.  I hope my scale is still moving in the right direction.  If it isn't, well then, its time to re-evaluate my diet again, and figure out what is working and what isn't!

Monday, September 19, 2011

So close...

I started this journey at a whopping 261.2 lbs.  Its crazy to even remotely SAY that awful number.  Its hideous, and I cringe just thinking about it.  261.2.  Ugh.  How in the world, did I let myself get so heavy?  I had never been so heavy before in my lifetime.  I think the combination of moving, not having as many friends as I did in Germany, or as many good friends as I did in Germany, and then being back in the states took a HUGE toll on me.  I believe when I left Germany, I was barely 200 year later and 61.2 lbs heavier.  ICK.

Today, after having gone through complications, then a two week stall on my weight, the numbers are headed back down.  According to my own scale (since its the one I weight most on, its the one I go off of), this morning I was down to 222.2 lbs.  Still not great, but certainly NOT 261.2...what a scary number.  I was over 250...WOW.  I am a month and a half out.  My official weigh in days are Tuesdays (since I had surgery on a Tuesday), so tomorrow that number is null and void if it isn't the same.  Still, I have one lbs to go until I've officially lost 40 lbs on my own scale.  40 lbs in a month and a half is no sorry feat.  The blood clot aided me in this loss.  However, sometimes I feel like I'm not losing fast enough.  Even though when I tell people, sometimes their eyes bulge out of their heads, and they look at me as if I'm crazy.  I've seen others who have had this surgery who lose 80-100 lbs in four months.  WOW, in that sense, I'm way far behind, and need to get moving, lol.  Others, I've seen 2 1/2 months out, and only have lost 20 lbs.  Every single BODY is different.  I just want to be in the group that loses a lot, but who doesn't, right?

I'm still figuring out my new diet and exercise plans.  Yesterday, I went a little crazy and decided to hand scrub every tile and the grout in my dining room.  Its not a small room, I had my oldest daughter following me wiping up my leftover water and soap, and my youngest one tackled the baseboards...yes, I make our Sunday cleanings a family affair.  Still, my dining room looked so freaking awesome afterwards...that is until my youngest got some cranberry juice and apparently spilled it on the floor...I would have LOVED for my hard work to last longer than a few hours, but hey, I have kids, and this just comes with the territory.  Still, for a brief hour or two, it looked AWESOME.  =)
I also washed my couches, vacuumed, did laundry, cut coupons, and somehow managed to watch three movies, all before 11:45 last night.  I get energy later in the day, I've noticed.  Then I go a little nuts with the cleaning and everything.  I think its my bodies way of saying, " can work out at ANY time now."  But I confess, I'm scared.

Why am I scared?  Well, because, I've noticed that my incisions are hurting a little.  I'm 6 weeks out from surgery, and this is totally and completely normal.  It usually only happens when I'm exerting myself.  My incisions are almost completely healed inside (they've been healed outside for quite sometime).  So when I exert myself a bit, they do ache a little.  Its normal, and natural.  I mean they did pull out a big portion of my tummy out through one of my incisions.  I really only have issues with two out of the six incisions.  Just the bigger ones.  The smaller once, I hardly even notice.  I have one incision scar that is soooo tiny, I have no clue what they used it for, and it heals more everyday.  I also worry that I'll put myself in pain again.  People have to understand that I was in a LOT of pain the first month after my surgery.  I was regretting EVERYTHING.  I was white knuckled on the ER table, morphine and percocet hardly touched my pain, it was really bad.  So I'm scared to take that next step, because I really don't want anymore pain if I can avoid it.  The incision pain is nothing compared to the pain I felt before.  Still, its like a hot burner...once you get burned, you don't ever want to go back....

Now I am going to share with you some pictures.  Don't mind my undies, and what not.  =P

This was me, about two weeks out from surgery, I was in pain, and not feeling well, but I still took a picture of myself for my hubby.  =)

When I was admitted to the hospital the second time, this is what they classified as food for me.  I believe the orange stuff are carrots, and I think the other is cream of wheat.  Luckily, I was a month out, and was able to request a different food, this is more for just after surgeries...I was seriously just not going to eat, lol.

 Don't mind my undies, or the stretch marks.  You can see my incisions, or some of them, you can also see the horrible bruising from my lovenox shots...can you believe that my bruising actually got much worse after this pic was taken.  I was very colorful, and it took up half of my stomach.  The bruises are completely going away, and have faded to a dark yellow color, but you can kind of see the incisions and how they are healing.  I joked after my surgery that it looked like I'd been stabbed multiple times.  My stomach is also still very swollen from the shots, as well as the surgery.  It takes about 6-8 weeks to heal completely from this surgery, and that includes the swelling.  I noticed recently that the swelling was going down when my pants were falling off, lol!

  Pre-surgery, my cute toes and feet.  These shoes are actually too big for me now, and you can clearly tell in this picture that they weren't too big before surgery.  I'll have to take pics of my feet and toes again.  My cat was so nice to have puked in these sandals that I ended up having to throw them out, and it was just as well, since they were having issues staying on my feet, I'll see if I can find some similar to post though, so you can see the difference in just my feet.  I am a strong believer that my initial 35 lbs was all water, lol.  (That isn't true though, probably the first 10-15 lbs were water weight though)

 The Lovenox shots...I was taking a picture of the size of the needle, and if you look closely, you can even see my facebook, lol!  That needle was not small, and I had to stick myself in the stomach, insert medication, then throw away the needle.  I hope to never have to do that again in my lifetime, but only time will tell.

I am almost at the 40 lbs lost mark, but I lose inches every single day.  I can feel it in my pants.  Other than the swelling after surgery, and the shot swelling, I've already gone down about two sizes, was wearing a 22, and am now in a 18, but even that can be a little bit.  I'm already having to go through my clothes.  A lot of things are either too big, or too small, with this in between stage.


Friday, September 16, 2011

Its been a CRAZY month...

I apologize for my absence.

I started having some weird pains about a week after my surgery.  At first I couldn't breath very well, and ended up going to the ER 3 different times.  I was in pain for about a month.  And I'm talking white knuckle pain, I was taking 2 percocet every 4-6 hours, and even that wasn't cutting it at times.  Each time at the ER I was given morphine, saline, and a battery of tests were run on me.  Each time, they couldn't figure out what was wrong...

I was stumped, thinking, wow, I'm weak, or that I wasn't handling this surgery well at all.  Getting mad at myself because I literally couldn't do anything on my own.  I went to the grocery store at one point, and was in there about 20 minutes, and felt like I was going to pass out.  I was shivering in 110 degree weather, and felt overall awful.  I also wasn't able to EAT, or drink much of anything.  I was eating probably 3 tbl max per day of any given foods, and drinking probably only 48 oz a day.  I'm supposed to be eating probably an ounce each meal, and drinking 64 oz of water at least per day.  Getting in enough protein was very difficult.  After my excursion to the grocery store, I could no longer deal with the pain.  I went in to see my surgeon.

I waited in his office for two hours (I waited because I didn't want to go to the ER again, and be turned away because nobody could figure out what was wrong with me), it just so happened to be my dr.'s surgery day, so I had to wait.  Finally, after waiting in agonizing pain, and not being able to sleep at all the past few nights all caught up with me when I was in his office.  I burst out sobbing, I told him I couldn't do normal things, I didn't know what was wrong, the pain was virtually all over my abdomen, and radiated towards my back.
He thought it was my gallbladder, so had me admitted to the hospital again.  Thank goodness for good friends, a friend watched my kids for me since Paul is deployed, and all last minute too.
I headed up to the surgery rooms, and waited until tests could be run.  First I had an turned up with nothing, my gallbladder was healthy.  Again, we were all stumped.  My dr. thought maybe I was severely constipated, and told me they were going to do a hospital enema, but before that they were going to run a CT.  After my CT scan, I was waiting for my enema...not that I was even remotely looking forward to THAT, but hey, if it made the pain go away, I was all for it.  All of the sudden, one of my surgeons assistants came into the room, and told me we were going downstairs.  I figured oh boy, here we go with the enema, this is going to be SOOO pleasant.  =/
We get downstairs, and I get taken into the ultrasound room again.  This time, someone else does the ultrasound DIGGING into my ribs.  That was so not fun, but probably better than the enema I was prepared for, so I figured something was suspicious on the CT, and they were looking for something else.  Ultrasound again looked good, and I vaguely heard in passing something about thrombosis, and clots, but didn't think anything of it because they didn't see anything.  I was wheeled back up to my room to wait..yet again, for what I thought was my enema.
A nurse came to come get me, and so here we go again, down to the enema station.  We get downstairs, and the hallway was really crowded, people were looking all over the place, the nurse and I were like WHAT is going on?  Luckily, it was just a normal end of day lowering of the flag, but the way that it was all congested, the nurse almost told me to ditch the wheelchair and run (you just never know in an Army hospital these days), so that was my little funny.  Then we get to a room, and MRI is plastered all over the place, magnets, and warnings.  So I went into an MRI room.
They outfitted me with an IV, and set me all up on this itty bitty narrow bed that goes into this tube.  I was told to hold my breath multiple times, and then let it out, I was moved up and down in this contraption while it was hammering away.  Just your typical MRI.
Afterwards, I was waiting for my nurse, and literally saw my MRI...I don't think that the MRI tech was supposed to let me see, or maybe he didn't realize I was looking, because when I mentioned it, he looked sheepish.  I clearly saw something that looked weird to me on the scan, but I'm also not a dr., so I just let it go.
That night was night number 2 in the hospital.  Still, not knowing what was going on, not having my enema (yay, I escaped it), and wondering when my pain was going to get better.  The next day, I got an early visit from my surgeon, he explained that I had a deep deep vein thrombosis.  Near my liver.  Its really rare to get a blood clot near your liver, but for some reason, I did.  Its just a peculiar place to get one I guess.  It was probably causing my pain, and everything else that was going on with me.  I immediately started getting Lovenox shots in my tummy, and had to take a Coumadin pill every day.  They released me later that evening, and I finally got to come home.
I am SO grateful that my dr. listened to me, and admitted me.  I'm so glad that they found out what was wrong.  I took the Lovenox shots (that I had to give to myself), for about a week, and then started on Coumadin pills.  We are still trying to find my right levels, and the correct dose of Coumadin for my body.  I am to stay away from green leafy veggies, and honestly, its not hard because most of my intake of food at this point is focusing on proteins.  I occasionally can fit in A green bean, or A small bite of fruit, but usually, the best thing is to focus on my proteins instead.
That first week, I started getting my appetite.  I started being able to eat...and learning my way around my new pouch.  I'm going much more slowly than others who have had this surgery because of my health issues.  When I was admitted into the hospital, I had lost 40 lbs in a little less than a month.  After I was discharged, I was on a stall for the last two weeks, and my weight loss is beginning to make its journey back down to where it needs to go.  Because of my stall, I had to focus more on my diet, and figure out what I was doing or not doing that I could change.
Obesity help has been a fantastic tool.  There are many people on that website that have helped me along the way.  Right now, since I can only have so much food, my main focus is on protein, so I have to get in between 60-70g of protein, and only 30 g carbs.  It took me a week or two to figure this out and now I'm learning.  I've learned so much in just a short time, and am learning more every day about my new tummy.

I still have pain, its managed with percocet.  I have to take more Coumadin than the initial dose, as my INR levels are lower than they should be, but we are working on it.  I have an appointment about once a week to see this dr., I see my surgeon about once a month, my nutritionist about once a month, and finally I haven't seen my primary care manager in a very long time, lol, but I need to go see him about my anti-depressants.  They no longer sit well with me.  Then again, I may not need them much anymore either.

There is my not so short update.  I am learning my new stomach, figuring out how it works, what works well for me, what doesn't, and how my new life is going to affect me.

Just a few important facts about having a gastric sleeve surgery:
They removed 85% of my stomach, but did not bypass any intestines, so I still absorb important nutrients.
My surgery was done laproscopically, which means that my scars on my stomach, will be much smaller than having an open stomach surgery.
People who say that this is the "easy" way out, are very uneducated.  I was one of those people a long time ago, until I started doing the research.  This has actually been one of the hardest things I've done, in my life.  Of course, I have had complications along the way, but what people don't realize, is that there is a LOT of emotions that come along with this ride.  I've mourned certain foods more than once, I've gotten sad that I can't binge eat, and drown my emotions in food anymore.  Its for the best though.  My issue has never been about LOSING the weight.  I've lost the weight multiple times.  My issue has ALWAYS been about maintaining.  I had this surgery so that I can have help with maintenance later on.

Overall, I will keep you posted on my weight loss, on my recipes, and many other things.  I am feeling so much better these days, so I should be around much more!