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Friday, May 24, 2013

A Funny Thing Happened on the way to the Terminal

Yeah, I know I said I'd not be blogging, but this made me laugh and I still have an hour until boarding. 

I got patted down at security!!!  Looking at the screen and where she was patting I am confident the two "boxes" on the screen were caused by my staples!!!  I had to laugh!!!  :-)

So excited and so thrilled that God has given me this opportunity even I it means I get patted down!!! 

Turkey, here I come!!

Thursday, May 23, 2013


The Country...not the food!

I'm leaving in the morning to spend two weeks in Turkey with my International daughter and her family.  I highly doubt I'll blog while I'm there, so I wanted you to know that I've not disappeared or anything, just experiencing life abroad!

I'll check back in when I get home! 

Prayers for CME and the boys are appreciated.  I know they'll be fine while, I'm gone, but who couldn't use a little extra prayer, right?
"I praise you [God] because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well." ~Psalm 139:14

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Bella's Turning One

On May 21, 2012, my precious granddaughter (lovingly referred to as "gbaby", "Bella Boo" or "Boo") made her appearance in this world.  Just as I was amazed how quickly my one-year surgiversary came around...I'm just as amazed that Bella is already a year old!

Since our first son was born, (with the prompting of CME) I have made the boys' birthday cakes.  So my daughter asked me if I'd make the cake for Boo.  She sent me a picture of one she found on Pinterest that she liked and hoped I could come close.  To be honest, I was a bit nervous because 1) It was a tiered cake and 2) It would require fondant!  The thought NEVER occurred to me about being nervous about baking...in a house alone.  This brought on some challenges that I hadn't expected.

First, I made my own marshmallow fondant... marshmallows, powdered sugar, water, vanilla and butter extracts.  If that's not sugar-overload, I'm not sure what is!  Since I always want to be honest here, I must confess that I did lick a spoon.  I wanted to taste it to see if it was nasty like store bought fondant.  It wasn't. (Darn!)

Secondly, though I didn't lick the bowl after the cake batters were poured into the pans, I did think about it.  After the cakes were baked, I found myself wanting to eat the "crumbs" in the bottom of the pan.  (Are you seeing the pattern here?!)  By the time I was icing the cake before adding the fondant, the desire to lick the icing off the knife when I was done was overwhelming!  What's a little lick?

After the cake was done and I was in the process of cleaning up the mess, without thinking thew a piece of the fondant into my mouth.  As I chewed it, I had that "OH MY GOSH!" moment and promptly spit it in the trash.  Want to know what's bad?  I did that a total of 3 times.  Before I knew it, I'd have a piece of fondant in my mouth and then spit it in the trash.  That concerns me!  At Boo's party, I did have a little bit of cake and a small amount of ice cream.  Considering that I wanted to eat it all, I think I did okay by having those few bites and trashing the rest.  But I have to ask myself this:  What has happened the past couple of days?  Why have I craved chocolate?  Why did I even accept that Dilly Bar?  Why, oh why did I wind up with fondant in my mouth...3 times?? What's going on??

Regardless of all those issues, it was a great day for a celebration and Bella seemed to have a good day!  As for me, I've got to evaluate if there is some underlying stress or issue that's causing me to be careless.  I'm not beating myself up over it...I just need to understand it so I don't fall back into the old ways!  God has given me this gift and I need to treasure it!

"I praise you [God] because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well." ~Psalm 139:14

Dilly Bar

It's been an eventful weekend and I've got lots to talk about.  But that will be a different post.  I felt like this one should be about a situation that happened on Friday and the choice I made.

Over the past 18 months, my location at work has changed 6 different times.  We joke and say that we shouldn't even unpack our boxes.  Regardless, that's the nature of the business right now.  After the massive layoff a little over a year ago, our company has gotten in a much better place and we are back in growth mode - which means hiring more people and rearranging the offices.

All that being said, we have new "neighbors" that just moved in the row next to ours. (Yes, we're in cubicles. I'm thankful that I have a job and do not care one iota that it's in a cube!)  Earlier in the week, I off-loaded some stress balls shaped like teeth to our new neighbors. You know...purely as a welcome to the neighborhood gesture - not a "can you help us get rid of this crap" mentality at all!  :)  Anyway as a thank you, one of the new neighbors came strolling in on Friday afternoon with a bag FULL of Dilly Bars!  You know... DQ ice cream dipped in chocolate!  (Remember my post just a couple of days ago...I. wanted. chocolate.)  And of course I didn't want to be rude to the new neighbor... so I took one.

After carefully looking at the nutritional value, I decided that I'd be fine if I ate it.  So, I opened it.  Took 3 bites, was totally satisfied and put the rest in the freezer for later.  (Portion wise, I probably could have eaten it since it's ice cream aka liquid.)  I told myself, that it's okay.  Part of this whole thing is to help me be 'normal'.  And normal people eat Dilly Bars.  Just not every day.

Fast forward to my afternoon snack time.  Off to the break room I go...ready to get a few more bites of the Dilly Bar.  I proceed to take it out of the package and I look at it.  Know what?  I didn't even want it!  I mean, the first 3 bites were good.  It was a nice treat.  But I didn't want the rest.  I really wanted my PB2 and banana. (Have you all figured out how much I like PB2??)  But... it was wasteful, right?  Wasteful to throw out 3/4 of a DQ Dilly Bar?  Who would do that?  I would.  And I did!  I took my unfinished,  unwrapped ice cream and threw it in the trash!

I know it probably seems like a silly thing to even blog about, but for me it felt like a HUGE victory!  Former Deedra would have eaten the whole thing when I first got it.  If I hadn't eaten it originally, former Deedra would definitely finished it during snack time.  But I didn't!  I chose to have something that would nutritionally benefit my body.

I know that's not always going to be the case (I'll blog more about that later), but I claim that victory in the fact that God took away the desire to even want to finish it.  I don't regret the first three bites.  I am glad I didn't eat the whole thing.  I'll take this NSV!
"I praise you [God] because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well." ~Psalm 139:14

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Not Caving to the Craving

I've not had any kind of unhealthy craving in a year!  Why now!?!?!

I texted CME yesterday that I was having a chocolate craving.  Seriously.  I. wanted. chocolate.  Today, it's not necessarily chocolate, but I've felt physically hungry, or at least "snacky" most of the day...or at minimum the thought occurred to me multiple times that I was hungry.  And those thoughts have been challenging.  I'm happy to report that I've overcome the challenge (today) without caving, but my gosh!!  I even went to the store (which is a "trigger place" for me if you remember) and didn't buy anything to snack on.  That alone is worth celebrating.  I've mentioned this a couple of times before, but surgery does not fix habits and does not cure food addiction.  We will still face those same cravings and temptations; we must learn to be aware and to handle those old vices that we face.  We must.

So tonight, I celebrate the NSV of not caving to the cravings!
"I praise you [God] because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well." ~Psalm 139:14

Friday, May 10, 2013

Happy Surgiversary To Me!

May 9, 2012.  It's hard to believe that it's been a year since I had gastric bypass surgery.  I could write a summary of the past year...but if you've followed my blog as I've embarked on this journey, you already know the story.  And if you're new...well, the entries are there already - so feel free to read them.  ;-)

So that left me with the issue of trying to decide what to blog about.  Of course I want to give you the info from the bariatric center so I guess I'll start there.  I first saw nurse who really is a sweet lady.  She's always so encouraging.  Here are some numbers she gave me. (Yes, numbers - they may not be "important" per se, but they're something quantitative that helps me see what progress I've made in a year.)

Highest weight at bariatric center: 282.8
Today's weight: 152.2 (remember their scale always weighs me slightly higher)
Difference: -130.6!!!

Highest BMI: 44.8
Today's BMI: 24.5
Difference: -20.3!!

Neck today: 12.5"; difference of -2.5!!
Waist today: 33"; difference -17" (17 inches!!!! holy smokes!)
Hips today: 41.5"; difference -19.5"  (NINETEEN INCHES!!)

BP 100/60  (pretty much my new norm)

She did ask me if I was where I wanted to be.  I thought for a second about the little weightloss ticker on this blog and how I had placed a number there. And then I thought about the extra skin that I'm carrying around and realized I'm probably a LOT closer to that number than I even realize.  So, yes, I'm where I want to be...if this is where I'm suppose to be.

Next, I saw the md for a bit where he went over my blood work and such. All my blood work came back good.  The only exception is that my blood platelets were a little low at 130,000.  I don't know what normal is and I don't know what that actually means for me.  He told me that they're not low enough to worry about, but he was going to be sending all my labs to my PCP anyway and if she seems concerned, he's sure she'd check them again.  Everything else was "perfect"... not anemic, no low iron issues...no vitamin deficiencies at all.  YAY!  Clean bill of health there.  I asked him if I can take a baby aspirin before my transcontinental flight in 2 weeks.  He said that'd be no problem.  Good to know.

He asked me if I was still walking and doing weight training.  Though I'm walking some at lunch, I still need to be more consistent.  I also made mention that I knew I should start weight training again because my muscle mass is low.  Other discussion included my constant runny nose (which he said he'd not heard of before) as well as food intake.  RD was out sick today so I didn't get to talk to her - although md mentioned that I should be getting about 1g protein per every kg I weigh, and that if I have issues to let them know, but otherwise just keeping doing what I've been doing.  So far, so blessed!  

And that, folks, was the extent of my appointment.  LCSW was out of the office as well, so I didn't get to talk to her either.  But I'm not sure what I'd tell her that's any different than what I post here, so I wasn't there long at all.  I think md summed up my visit with a "You've done great...keep doing it!"

And, with today being my surgiversary, I pulled out the old pair of jeans that I kept specifically for this day.  Pictures are below.  CME mentioned that the outfit I wore today may not show of the weight loss as significantly as it should.  But an NSV for sure - I didn't panic, I let him take the pictures anyway.  Oh yeah...another NSV... in past I wouldn't eat or drink anything prior to seeing a doctor.  Because if I starved myself before going to the doctor, I may weigh a little less.  Not today.  Today I ate... breakfast and lunch and I didn't take off any jewelry!  Little things, I tell ya... little things!

So before I post some pictures, let me say thank you.  Thank you to those of you who have been my prayer warriors for this adventure.  Thank you for the words of encouragement, whether those have come via blog comments, text, calls or forum responses.  You are blessings!  And of course, thank you CME.  You are my rock here on earth and I am blessed to be your wife!

Now on to pictures...and a new day of the life God has called me to.  May He be glorified by this process and the transformation He's made in my life!

Happy Surgiversary to Me!

My size 28 jeans that were snug this time in 2012!

I didn't get shorter...I promise!

Two legs...one leg hole!
Side view.

Yes...I'm excited!!!  God has done awesome things!!!
"I praise you [God] because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well." ~Psalm 139:14

Thursday, May 9, 2013

The Hardest Thing I've Done

It's 11:30 at night.  Tomorrow is the one year anniversary of the date of my gastric bypass surgery.  My one year follow-up appointment at bariatric center is at 1:00pm tomorrow.  Tonight...tonight I am doing the hardest thing I've done during this whole process.

In February 2012, I posted an entry about Transparency.  It's when I first posted my "before" pictures for the world to see.  I thought that was hard.  And it was at the time.  But what I'm doing tonight is even harder.

Last week I posted about the vanity issues that I need to work on... the extra skin, the veins, etc.  So in an attempt to truly be transparent and let God work on the part of my heart (and brain) that hurts when I see images in the mirror...I'm posting my One Year Post-Op Extra Skin pictures.

Now, being as I know not everyone will want to see these, I'm giving you the option to click on a link to take you to a Picasa album where there are multiple pictures posted.  If you don't want to go to the link, I will not be offended!  (This is your TMI warning of the night!)  Click here: 1 Year Post Op - Extra Skin

Before you go there, the first picture below is me just about a week and a half ago.  The second picture is a close-up of the extra skin on my inner thighs. I thank God for clothes!  

Another consignment shop outfit...less than $10 total!

Sneak Peek Close Up

I pray that God will fully free me from the angst I feel when I see these pictures and the images in the mirror!  He is my source of peace and freedom...I need to be willing to let Him completely set me free from the negative emotions.  

PS - Expect more (clothed) pictures tomorrow...after all, it's my one year surgiversary!!!
"I praise you [God] because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well." ~Psalm 139:14

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Weekend Challenges

Weekends are a challenge for me.  Not because of poor food choices or wanting to snack or anything like that.  Almost the opposite, to be honest.  During the workweek, I have a schedule that looks something like this:

5:15 am (don't ask CME how many times snooze is hit some mornings) - rise and shine, shower, etc.
6:00 am - vitamins (calcium, B12, D, Biotin), Prilosec and coffee (x2)
8:00 am - Brown Sugar and Cinnamon Instant Oatmeal
8:30 am - coffee #3
9:00 am - bottle of water #1 & multivitamin
10:30 am - morning snack
11:00 am - bottle of water #2
12:30 pm - lunch & calcium
2:00 pm - bottle of water #3 (IF I'm freezing, maybe coffee)
3:30 pm - afternoon snack & multivitamin
4:30 pm - bottle of water #4
Whatever time - dinner

It's routine.  It's easy to remember to take my vitamins.  It's easy to remember to drink all my water.  But during the weekends, it's a challenge.  I either sleep later than normal and totally miss out on breakfast and then I feel like my whole schedule is thrown off, or I'm on the go and miss other things. Today, I was up early, but we were out of the house early (before breakfast)...got back home around 10:30 am, took my morning vitamins and grabbed a banana.  Remembering vitamins and drinking all the water I need to, usually doesn't happen on the weekends.  I've had ONE bottle of water today and its 9:30pm! I've had lots of coffee though - (just finished my 2nd cup of decaf since dinner.)  I did have one snack today - a protein bar.  But in general, my whole schedule is off and I know I've not really taken care of myself the way I need to.  Heck, I even needed sleep today and really couldn't for various reasons.  Oldest daughter, son-in-law and gbaby visited (truly a blessing!!) and nixed the first attempt at naptime.  Then when I'd try to nap when gbaby was napping, I may have dozed off 10-15 minutes, but would get a call, or a text, or be awakened by a barking dog. 

Anyway, that's what I struggle with during the weekends.  I'm thankful for weekends.  I just need to be more aware and intentional in my actions during the weekends.  So thankful that God takes care of me even when I don't!
"I praise you [God] because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well." ~Psalm 139:14

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Vanity Sucks

Now I know it doesn't help that I'm tired after only getting about 3 hours of sleep after last night's events, but as I was leaving the store this evening I was nearly in tears.  I've mentioned the extra skin before.  It's not a pleasant sight.  There's extra skin everywhere!  My back...yes, my back...my stomach, of course...my arms and legs look like melting candles (got that term from my friend M at our last support group!) and my "girls"...oh my!  This once DDD gal is now in a B!  Very full B with excess skin rolled and tucked ad poked into place, but a B!  There's just a whole lot of skin hanging around. Not everyone has this issue..but I figure that I've been obese for over half my life. That's a long time for skin to be stretched out to its max.

I've got a trip to Turkey rapidly approaching.  I'm blessed to spend a couple of weeks with my "Turkish Daughter" and her family.  As part of the trip, we will be spending time at the Mediterranean Sea.  Sea = water and beach.  Water and beach = swimsuit.  Ugh.  

Before settling on a tankini top and men's board shorts, I entered the dressing room with 3 potential one piece suits...thinking that maybe I could just wear a wrap around my waist that was long enough to cover my thighs.  But each suit was a challenge - tucking the skin in at various places, looking in the mirror and seeing the veins, mainly dark blue/purple, bulging from my legs, seeing my flattened chest and poochy belly.  (The extra skin pooches...what can I say?)  It was hard.  I was sad.  It's the first time I've felt really sad at about how I look now.  I know that's crazy.  I. AM. HEALTHY.  And I truly am thankful.  It's just shocking to see what I can usually hide under clothes.

On a positive note, I'm thankful for clothes!

All-in-all, I'm okay with the swimwear I chose. I will still be self conscious, I'm sure.  It's hard not to be.  But this thing called vanity... yeah it's for the birds!
"I praise you [God] because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well." ~Psalm 139:14