Today is two weeks from surgery and so much has happened. My amazing family provided exceptional care during 10 days of recovery and they remain diligent with daily calls for status reports. My mom, dad and sister sacrificed quite a bit to be with me individually, during crazy times in their own lives, to care for me and for that my gratitude is overflowing.
The image I chose to associate with this post is a painting I purchased a week before surgery from one of Mom’s artists. I have always loved Marion’s work, but this one particularly caught my eye. It represents not only my turning 53 on December 19th, but fact that she uses old book pages is a connection with one of the things I love, reading. Also the “scratch, stores, scream” just makes me giggle. They seem more like instructions than statements. Regardless it touches my heart and it will always represent this journey and transition.
Now to catch you up on the post surgical journey. As a quick reminder I began the journey at 280 lbs this summer and on the day after surgery, December 14th, weighed 270 lbs at the doctor’s office, though I had lost about 6lbs more during the pre-op diet. This weekend I weighed 251 lbs.
Ah….December 13th, the surgery. The day was long, though I was unconscious for much of it. We, the parents and I, were at the outpatient surgical center at 7am and entertained each other until 11am when the nurse came to take me to the surgical suite. Unbeknownst to both the patient and the parents, the nurse had neglected to have me sign the release for surgery. Parents had gone for food, finally, and I was gleefully “put under”. Shortly after the lack of signature was discovered, the search for the parents began. They were enjoying a Subway lunch on the other side of the hospital opposite the surgery center when the call was received. Eventually surgery commenced but it was late in the afternoon before I was conscious enough for transport to the hotel. I don’t recall much from the day, or night, but I can say that short of the signature confusion, everything went very well.
My recovery has been without issue. Dr. Lee Schmitt did an incredible job and I am overjoyed with my decision to have the surgery as well as to have used Alabama Weight Loss Surgery. I follow a few support groups on Facebook and see how different people react following the procedure. I have been so happy with my own recovery as I have been able to handle varying liquid temperatures, getting daily protein and liquid requirements, and have experienced none of the severe gas pain others describe. Much of my success I credit to the fact that I not only was walking the day of surgery, but continued to increase my walking each day until I was at 3 miles this past weekend.
I am learning to “eat” more solid foods following three weeks on liquids. I am in the pureed stage and am handling everything well. I cannot stomach, no pun intended, artificial sweeteners, which has been a big surprise. I have a feeling I will learn quite a lot more in these next few weeks as I work towards January 24th when I will be back on regular foods.
This journey has been filled with teaching moments from the very beginning and it is only starting to really ramp up. My outlook on food selections/tolerances, exercise and even social choices is constantly changing. I cannot imagine where I will be, what I will look like or how my thinking will change this new year of 2017, but am looking forward to each day and the surprises they will bring!
And I can’t wait to share it with you….