Thursday, January 28, 2010

So it begins...and I am excited!

Today is the first real step toward my ultimate goal. I am heading to my very first weight loss surgery seminar. I am finding myself to be both excited and nervous. I am anxious to learn more even though I've been doing a lot of reading on my own. I feel like this process is going to take forever. I am really just an impatient person when it comes to things like this. Once it is in my head, and I know I can make it happen; I cannot get it done soon enough. So, the journey begins today.

I've been thinking more about how I want to keep track of my progress during this time and know there are several ways that are options. I can continue to use my blog as a place to track myself, which I will more than likely do regardless; however, I am also trying to think of a way to visually watch the changes. Some people take weekly or monthly photo's, others might make short video's blogs of their journey. Any thoughts about this? I am thinking it would be wonderful to take weekly photos and make one big album I can keep. That way I could flip back anytime I wanted and would have something I could take with me to show friends and family down the road. My only concern is that each weekly picture won't look all that different. Perhaps monthly photo's would be better. I dunno. Any thoughts?

On a side note, I am very excited because my 5 year old niece is coming to stay with me this weekend. She is completely adorable and I can't wait to spend some good quality time with her. Sounds like she is bringing her Mommy too, which is fine; though I would have enjoyed having her all to myself. I will hopefully remember to take some photo's of our time together.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Just another Thursday

Today is my last 10 hour Thursday, which means tomorrow is my last Friday off without having to use vacation. Apparently my boss is not satisfied with my work as of late so my 4 day per week schedule is being revoked and I am being sent back to the standard 5 day/week like everyone else. At first I was a bit upset about this mainly because I don't like that they are unhappy with my work, but also because I LOVE having every Friday off. It became my own personal time to do what I wanted and needed to do so I will miss having it that way. I can see the reasoning though, I could be more productive in a day, and this is a way to get me re-focused. So, that is now my mission. Obviously I'm still not 100% in focus as I am writing this during my work shift. :) But seriously, I am allowed breaks during the day and instead of getting up and taking 15-20 minutes here or there I choose to use my break time spread out all day. My productivity will go up and they will be happy with me, or at least I hope they will.

I have a very stressful job. You never can seem to do enough to make them happy. I guess that is the big fault of a production-based position. They figure you could always do more than you do. Anyway, I am hopeful within a couple of weeks they will leave me alone.

I don't really mind having the 5 day work week either and I figure there is a reason this is coming back to me now. I still get my weekends to myself and this will give me time to get back into water aerobics, which I have missed. So, I am trying to look at the change as a positive thing. My husband was working long 10-14 hour days when I decided to switch to the 4 day per week schedule so that we would better match our work times. Now he is rarely getting 8 hours so the change back to 8 hour days for me will mean more time with him in the evenings. He sounds pretty happy about the change so maybe it will be for the best.

Now the question is; what to do for my last Friday off??

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Get that big ball rolling

Today I have officially taken my first steps to the future. I have signed myself up to go to not one but two separate seminars about weight loss surgery. I am very excited to know that this could happen fairly quickly for me. I was told I can set up with a surgeon as soon as I wish following each of the seminars. I am pretty scared at this whole situation and know there are some major risks involved and find myself being reminded of this pretty frequently; however, life is not without risks. I figure each time I get in my little Jeep to go shopping or to visit family/friends I am at risk of something major happening. I figure we each face risk of dying or of suffering major injury from normal day to day activities. As such, I wonder why those "risks" people are so eager to point out should stop me from looking into this in a serious manner.

Did you know obesity and inactivity can causes cancers including colon, breast, kidney, and esophageal cancer? Here are some statistics I found at CNN. com;
49 percent of endometrial cancers are caused by excess body fat. That number is followed by 35 percent of esophageal cancer cases; 28 percent of pancreatic cancer cases; 24 percent of kidney cancer cases; 21 percent of gallbladder cancer cases; 17 percent of breast cancer cases; and 9 percent of colorectal cancer cases.

Is it just me or is that SCARY! Almost half of all endometrial cancer is caused by being obese! What is endometrial cancer? Most people would call it uterine cancer. According to Mayo Clinic; endometrial cancer, is one of the most common cancers in American women. It begins in the cells of the endometrium, the lining of your uterus — a hollow, pear-shaped pelvic organ where fetal development occurs. Endometrial cancer is sometimes called uterine cancer, but there are other cells in the uterus that can become cancerous — such as muscle or myometrial cells. These form much less common cancers called sarcomas.

So, those who say surgery is risky...I show you these number and I show you the increased risk of co-morbidities including heart disease, diabetes, stroke, DEATH. I realize this is a big decision and the decision for surgery is not the choice that is appropriate or right for ALL obese people. That being said, I feel it is the right decision for me and my future. Anyway, so the big ball is now in motion. I am getting focused on the next steps in the coming months and learning more and more about obesity and surgery.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Looking ahead

Well, obviously from my last post one should be able to tell things in my life haven't been all that wonderful since getting married. I don't know what the reasoning but Jared and I have had a huge disconnect since our big day. A week ago I was pretty sure it wasn't going to last. I was pretty sure I didn't want to stick around to watch the rest of the deconstruction of our lives. We spent a few days avoiding one another and not talking, but finally the silence had to be broken. I forced the issues and we spent several long night talking through some things. I'm not saying we are "fixed" or "perfect", but at least we are both "trying" to stay on the right track. I suppose trying is really all anyone can ever do.

Last week was a bad week for me in so many ways. Going through the tough times with Jared, but also my own personal battles. I reached a point where I just suddenly realized I have to do something about being overweight. I know it's grown to this life threatening problem and see I have to make some hard decisions. I have previously tried to get gastric bypass surgery approved by my insurance company, but to no avail. It is quite simply an exclusion from my policy, which leaves me to either not get surgery, pay for it myself, or try to find a new employer with insurance to cover it. Basically, it means no good options. I like my work, so finding a new job is not an option. Self-paying for surgery would mean finding a way to pay for a $25,000 dollar procedure on top of day to day life. That was not going to happen either, which left me on the road of no surgery.

I've been on that road the last two years and doing nothing else to help myself out of this. I started swimming for awhile but fell off track and gave up. So, last week I started looking at other options. I again re-visited the option of self-pay for surgery, but to get a loan would mean a huge interest rate and monthly payments upward of 700 dollars. Unless I start selling some of my life away including my home, this was not an option. Next step...I looked at local "weight loss programs" through gyms or personal trainers. I found a 12 week program, which could be an option to get a good start under my feet. It was about 340 bucks, which was yet another thing I needed to save for a bit. This smaller amount is totally doable in another month or two. I started to have hope for change.

My parents have watched me as a heavy person nearly my whole life, from the time I was about 8 or 9 I started getting big. I know and can acknowledge the reason for this, which was mentioned on my blog before. You can read about it if you click here. I was molested, raped, verbally assaulted, and physically abused. It was a hard time in my life and I was young! I didn't know how to protect myself, couldn't tell anyone or ask anyone for help. Food became my comfort and I started to believe that if I could get "fat" the bastard wouldn't like me anymore and would leave me alone. Why should someone who is 8 years old have to think about something so horrible? Fast forward to this week. I still fight the daily battle with my weight and eating and being so consumed with it. I am lost and alone and scared. I know it is time to take control in some way.

I call my mother, who agreed with me and said the 12 week program sounded like a great start. Goose, the best friend anyone could have, agreed and has been by my side. As someone who has been my friend for the last 15 years, she has seen alot. I'm sure more than I realize. This damn weight has destroyed my life. Everyone close to me agrees, time to do something. Most tell me, "you don't need surgery, just need to stop eating and start exercising". Geez, brilliant! If only it were that simple. I would have had this gone years ago. But, now I have a plan to try again and take part in this 12 week program and get going with SOMETHING. This is in my head and I'm ready to start....UNTIL....

I get a call from my Dad. He mentions about my weight and about how my mom had discussed with him about my plan. He agreed that it is time to do something big to deal with this. They all know and understand how the weight is a direct result of my abuse as a child. Something I've carried with me since that time. He acknowledges that I am prepared to start this long journey and tells me how happy he is that I am making the decision to want to move on from this. He says my choice for the 12 week program is good but, he offers a gift I still cannot quite take in all the way. He offers to pay for gastric bypass surgery. I am overwhelmed and excited and hopeful and SCARED! This is my inheritance. A gift he wants me to have now as he feels like if I don't take it now; I won't get because I won't outlive him. We cry together talking about my weight and how much of a barrier it has become to life. I once was athletic and active and even though I was big then, it was not enough to stop me from doing what I enjoy. Now, I have very little from life I enjoy. Most things are uncomfortable physically and mentally.

We talked a long time on the phone about surgical options and about gathering more information to make a good decision about this. He tells me, "the time has come to get serious and move forward with visiting surgeons, going to seminars, and choosing the best option for your body and your life". Even no, days later, I am in awe of how this all played out.

At this point in time I wonder if anyone out there has any experiences good/bad/or otherwise related to weight loss surgery. I am in education mode and want to learn all I can about different procedures, surgeons, outcomes, recovery, etc. I need to learn learn learn so I don't let this opportunity get wasted. I am hopeful for a long and bright future where I am not confined and restricted and sad. Time to look ahead.

Monday, January 11, 2010

How do you go from one to the other?

Just wondering how you can go from this:

to this:

in three short months.

Friday, January 8, 2010

The dog days of winter

It has been a long while since I posted something so I figured I should get back into it. Our weather has turned bitter cold and we finally got some of that beautiful snow I had hoped to see. I look out the window and everything seems so peaceful and calm. Unlike the way I feel lately. I've been doing alot of thinking over the last couple of weeks and my mind is unsettled. I can't seem to focus on one thought and can't seem to sit still.

The holidays are over, which I am very glad of. Christmas was very lovely this year and I felt more relaxed than I have in the past 6 years. It was a good change. I spent new years house sitting for some family, which was fine, but I was ready to get back home by the time the weekend was done.

Now that I'm back here some part of me wishes I could run off and get away again. I guess that is how it always works. My husband and I are on a somewhat disconnected road right now. It scares me. With the cold and snow came him getting no work and being home. I feel like when he is here and I have to work, he could be taking care of the chores so I don't have to and so that they will be done for us to get to spend evenings together. He, on the other hand, feels like he should be able to do whatever he wants, which equals sit in front of the TV for 10 hour straight. I am all for lazy days every now and then, but doesn't it seem a bit unfair for him to sit in front of the TV for 10 hours while I work, then come to me and ask what I'm making for dinner? I figure dinner is the least he could do. But, I get up after my long day and stand in the kitchen and make dinner plus clean it all up. Not exactly what I wanted to do and of course by the time I get done with cooking and cleaning the day is pretty much over.

Maybe I'm just whiny and bitchy lately but I can't see how his mind tells him it is OK to act like this. I couldn't just sit and do nothing all day while he works and then ask him to make me dinner plus clean it up. Oh well. If all of this isn't bad enough, someone got a hold of my debt card number and made a counterfeit card, which they then took to a Best Buy store in a different state and made a $1000 purchase with. This is a big hassle for me because not only do I have to wait up to 15 days for my money to be restored, but I also have had to make several trips to the bank to fill out paperwork to get my money back.

On a more positive and happy note. My dog LOVES the snow. This has been his first year to really get out and play in it and boy oh boy is he into it. He runs around and kicks snow up everywhere. Makes me laugh and smile whenever I think about it. So, here are a few pictures of Dudley enjoying the white fluffy snow. These were taking over Christmas at my Mom's, but he has been at it again since getting new snow at home this week.