A-Weigh We Go

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Thursday, January 31, 2013

I Survived NyQuil

Happy to report that I survived NyQuil.  The forums were right...it put me O.U.T. and fast, but I didn't dump with it.  Been a DayQuil day every 4 hours, though it wears off before that time.  My hands are dry from all the washing and sanitizing.  Looking forward to more NyQuil tonight.

CME has it too.  We are pretty pitiful.  But we're pitiful together.

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

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Going Out on a Limb

The sickies have definitely hit our house.  Though the boys are better, CME and I are both fighting colds.  My go-to for colds was always Nyquil.  Now the thought of taking it has me a bit on edge.  I've Googled and checked forums.  I even got out my binder of information given to me right before surgery.  I found one little line that says, "Remember all over the counter medications like cold/cough syrups should be sugar and alcohol free."  Of course I know this, but Nyquil usually is the only thing that would help me at night.  Comments from the forum indicate that most have not dumped from it, but that it knocks them out quickly...I suspect from the alcohol.  

Tomorrow I'm going to call bariatric center and ask for suggestions.  Until that time, I'm going out on a limb...tonight I'm taking Nyquil.  Wish me luck!
"I praise you [God] because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well." ~Psalm 139:14

Monday, January 28, 2013

Could Use a Little Prayer

So this post is totally off the WLS topic, but our household could use a little extra prayer.  Seems like that oh-so-nasty stomach bug has hit our home.  I'm not sure exactly what it is, to be honest.  Each of the boys had headache/cold/fever symptoms last week into this weekend.  But have been fever-free yesterday and today.

Then, this morning our oldest woke up with nausea and dry heaves.  I kept him home from school.  He threw up a couple of times throughout the day coupled with diarrhea.  The youngest woke up complaining of his stomach hurting, but since there was no fever and he wasn't vomiting, he thought he could make it.  Wrong.  My phone at work rang at 10:15 because he was in the nurse's office not feeling well and since his brother had the bug, well, they sent him home.  Smart move.  Diarrhea hit him first and then vomiting at 3:00pm.  UGH!

Not only did the boys catch whatever it is that's going around, CME's Mom and step-dad were in town this weekend and my mother-in-law caught it too!  Made for a really long ride home back to Michigan for them!  (So sorry D!)  So far, CME and I haven't had the stomach issue.

I've Clorox-wiped down everything the boys could have touched.  The smell of Lysol permeates through the house.  This may seem silly to say, but I'm a little fearful of what a stomach virus would do to my pouch.  I mean, I know people get sick after gastric bypass, but if I can somehow avoid it, please God, let me!

So, if you're the praying type, will you keep our family in your prayers?  Pray that the boys and my in-laws recover quickly and pray that CME and I avoid this nasty virus!
"I praise you [God] because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well." ~Psalm 139:14

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Pinterest Interest

I've recently joined the Pinterest craze.  It's amazing all that you can find there.  The possibilities there are endless!  I've pinned so many things that I begin to wonder if I'll ever go back to them or if I'll really try it...whether it's a new recipe, a craft, or a way to fix my hair.  

Tonight, however, I decided to try a recipe that I pinned.  I like soup anyway and if I can get it with lots of protein, it's a win win.  I found a Creamy Chicken Taco Soup recipe for the crockpot that I almost ignored because it had "creamy" in the title.  However, a little research revealed that the creaminess isn't cream at all; it's a combination of plain Greek yogurt and cannellini (white kidney beans).  Looking at the nutritional value... oh. my. goodness!  PACKED with protein.  Bonus?  It was YUMMY!  

I usually don't post recipes, but I figured I'd share this one anyway.  Looks like the original recipe came from website http://www.muscleandfitnesshers.com.  

This is CME's bowl.  He added a few tortilla chips and a little bit of salsa for some extra kick.

Creamy Chicken Taco Soup
3/4 cup nonfat Greek yogurt
1 15-oz can 50% less sodium white beans, rinsed and drained
1 15-oz can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 4-oz can diced green chills
1 15-oz can diced tomatoes
1 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth
1 cup frozen or fresh corn
1 1/2 pounds shredded precooked chicken breast (I used rotisserie chicken)
2 tbsp fresh squeezed lime
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 tsp onion powder
1 tbsp fresh oregano, chopped
1/2 tsp smoked paprika
1 tsp chili powder
1 tsp cumin
1 tbsp dried cilantro
2 tsp Mrs. Dash Fiesta Lime Seasoning Blend
1) Place 1/2 cup broth and white beans in a blender and puree. Add yogurt and blend again. Pour liquid into slow cooker.
2) Add remaining ingredients and stir well.
3) Cover and cook on high for 2 hours or on low for 4-5 hours.
Note: Be sure to rinse and drain black beans and chicken well before adding to slow cooker.
Nutrition Facts (per serving): Calories 275, Fat 2 g, Saturated fat 1 g, Cholesterol 47 mg, Sodium 401 mg, Carbohydrates 36 g, Dietary Fiber 11 g, Sugars 7 g, Protein 32 g

One other thing I tried off Pinterest this evening is a Chocolate Protein Frozen Yogurt.  I'm still looking at ways to get in all my protein and Greek yogurt is a great source.  My problem is that the zing of the Greek yogurt makes it difficult for me to eat plain.  I saw the recipe from the link above and gave it a try.  I didn't freeze mine before I ate it...so it was more of a mousse consistency.  It was edible, but I could still really taste that zing.  I ate about 1/2 with a banana and have froze the other 1/2 to see if it makes it more palatable for me.
So that's been my Pinterest recipe trials so far.  I'm still not sure how much I'll really cook from there, but it is nice to find some things that are healthy and that my family enjoys!
"I praise you [God] because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well." ~Psalm 139:14

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Feeling It This Morning

I made it back to Body Pump last night. My youngest son and I hit the Y while CME took our other son to a Scout meeting. Remember how I said I stopped exercising? Yeah. I am definitely feeling that reality this morning!

Day 1 back at the gym can now be checked off. Please pray that I continue to be faithful in this part of the journey. It is so crucial for my long term success!!

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Can vs. Should

“Just because I can, doesn’t mean I should.” I had to keep telling myself that over the past several days. I was reading labels to make sure it was appropriate for my program (right fat, right sugars, etc.) and told myself “I can have that.” But then I realized that there was no nutritional reason to eat it. I would be eating it to be eating it and it would in essence be empty calories. In essence it would be snacking on something that my body doesn't need. In essence it would be old habits creeping back in.

I don’t know if I jinxed myself by saying I want food to be what it’s intended – as life support – but the thoughts have been strong the past couple of days. (And for the record, I don’t believe in jinxes either!) For instance, I was grocery shopping this weekend and found myself looking at the Orville Redenbacher SmartPop! – specifically the kettle corn. Sure there are only 110 calories per serving. Sure there are only 2g (3%) total fat and not even enough significant sugars to list. There’s even 4g of protein per serving. Sounds like it’s a win/win! But what is a serving? One serving is 6.5 cups of popped corn. SIX AND ONE HALF CUPS. That’s like a whole week’s worth of evening snacks maxing out my pouch capacity!

Another example is that I made some cookie-esque desserts that the boys could pack in their lunches. Using Splenda and such, the cookies technically “fit” in my program. They’re not necessarily unhealthy, but they’re not healthy either. I won’t lie and say I didn’t have any because I did. I’ve had 3 since I made them on Sunday. In general, that’s not bad. For me it’s not good either. What was the nutritional, life supporting value in those cookies? I still need to use my “snacks” to hit my daily protein minimums.

Will I ever be able to “snack” again? Maybe. But it’s way too early in the game for me to get into that mindset. I still don’t have the control over my food addiction to allow this to happen. If I start snacking for the sake of snacking, I will be back in the boat I was before…the one that’s slowly drifting out into the deep waters of obesity and health issues. I refuse to let that happen.

Just because I can, doesn’t mean I should.
"I praise you [God] because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well." ~Psalm 139:14

Sunday, January 20, 2013

It's Relative

"Are you at your goal weight?"  "How much more weight do you think you'll lose?" "You're losing too much weight." "You're so skinny." "Don't lose too much more..."

Lately it seems like those are a lot of the questions and comments that are coming my way from many different people in my life.  I'm not offended by them at all. I know that for the most part it is truly out of concern.  The thing I try to explain to people is that if they didn't know me that they wouldn't think I was skinny.  If we were strangers and they passed me on the street they wouldn't be concerned.  It's a relative term. The perception comes in because they are use to seeing me [morbidly] obese so there is a stark difference.  Though the MD won't give me a goal weight, technically I'm still considered to be overweight.  Only 8.5 months out from surgery I know that I will continue to lose weight for a while.  I don't know how much that will be and I don't know when my body will finally even itself out.  What I do know is that it's important for me to continue to follow the program.  I trust God to walk me through this part of the journey as well.  For Him to take my body to where it needs to be and to give me wisdom when I need it.  And through this I will continue to give Him the glory for continuing to transform me both inside and out!

Below is a glance of the transformation...and why it's all relative.

2006 - at close to my highest weight
(yes, I think I was actually even bigger than this at one point)

January 20, 2013 - not quite half of what I was in 2006

Thank you God for your transforming power!

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

Saturday, January 19, 2013


One of those things that can annoy the living daylights out of people is when the person who has quit <insert vice here> all of the sudden thinks they're the expert and tries to "help" others with the same problem.

I've recently noticed that I have become the person that watches what others eat.  Odd thing is that I seem to be focusing on people that I know have had gastric bypass surgery as well as on my family members.  I couldn't tell you what my friends ate at lunch on Thursday ...well, except the one who needs (for medical reasons) to watch her sodium intake.  But I really didn't even "police" her food.  However, if I see a co-worker that had surgery, I look to see what they're eating.  Is it healthy?  Is it the right quantity for how far out post-op they are?  Does it meet "my" guidelines?  And since I still want to be open, honest and transparent here, I must admit that I sometimes realize that I'm being judgmental of their decisions.  Thoughts like, "Oh my gosh!  Are you kidding me?  That is soooooooo not appropriate to be eating at x months out." or "Oh my!  I don't think s/he should be eating that.  It's got WAY too many sugars." or even "Wow.  No way will I eat that when my body adapts and there's not as much of a chance to get sick..."  Same when I hear someone say "I don't dump."  What?!  How do you know you don't dump?  Have you intentionally tried to get sick by eating too many sugars?  Who on earth would do that??  WHY would you do that?  

Here's the deal.  I have struggled for so long that I truly want to help others be healthier. I want them to experience days of not feeling the burden of the excess weight.  I want them to take care of their bodies. I want them to enjoy life and see food as I'm seeing it for the first time - as a necessary ingredient to live - like manna was for Moses and the Israelites.  Don't confuse that statement by thinking that I don't want food to be enjoyed or tasty.  That's not what I'm saying at all.  I'm saying I want it to be treated as how it was intended - for survival, nothing more.  

So I have become "that" person.  The one who tries to talk her relative out of purchasing something that wouldn't be suited well for diabetics.  I've been the mom who has to talk to her growing 13 year old son about what's healthy snacking and how the habits he's forming now will follow (and possibly haunt) him as an adult.  I've been the mom who is really trying to get her children to eat proper portions of healthy foods.  It's a struggle some days.  I want the kids to know that sometimes a snack is okay; eating 5 chocolate coconut chewy bars in 2 days is not okay and that a serving of orange juice is not a 20 ounce glass.  The whole "Eat This Not That" burden seems heavy for me some days.  I know it's not my role for everyone in my life, but I do feel some sense of duty to at least try to teach my family.  

The intention is good, but I really need to find a good balance between educating others and being a food Nazi.  
"I praise you [God] because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well." ~Psalm 139:14

This is Not the Blog Entry I had Planned

Confession.  I've stopped exercising.  EEK!!!

My brain knows I need to exercise.  Heck, when I was exercising I didn't mind it - well at least not the Body Pump class.  And yet, I've not found the motivation to get back in the groove.  Plenty of excuses why I stopped; probably even more why I've not started back.  But they are all just excuses.  

I need to find that motivation again.  I need to find carve out the time again.  I must.  This new life God has granted me through gastric bypass surgery cannot be wasted by reverting back to old ways.  I must do this.

And I just changed the title to this entry because this is not the entry I had planned.  Funny thing though is that I now can't even remember what I was going to blog about this morning.  I guess I'm hearing that exercise is THAT important.

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

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

PCP and the "Girls"


That's what I heard yesterday when my PCP walked into the room for my annual physical.  She looked at me and said, "How long has it been since I last saw you?"  One year ago, she gave me the "thumbs up" for the surgery.  She was thrilled at how well I've done in such a short time.  Again, that puts those days of where I felt like it was going soooo slow into perspective.  It was fun to listen to her remove conditions from my chart:
No longer obese.
No longer hypertensive.  (BP was 98/68.)
No longer on anxiety meds.
No longer needing Tylenol on a regular basis for my knees.
She went on to discuss that this time last year I was 124 lbs. heavier.  She did let me know that my BMI is still a little higher than it should be (27 according to her charts) but that last year it was 47!  Forty. Seven.  Wow!  We talked a little about the "shrinkles" and she said that she knew a few really good plastic surgeons in town, but that she can't document any medical necessity at this point, so she's not sure that insurance would cover it.  (bummer!)  Other than that, I got a "good job" and see you in a year.  I left the office with a smile on my face and an order for my annual mammogram.

So this morning started with a 6:45am appointment for that VERY IMPORTANT (really ladies...do it!) yet uncomfortable procedure.  As I was completing the paperwork, I heard the ladies behind the desk discussing the video America's Crazy Obesity Problem that I actually blogged about last year.  (Read that entry here.) I still cringe thinking about part of that being filmed right here.  It makes me sad to this day.  Anyway, I didn't realize that I'd still be as self-conscious about this procedure as I was last time.  The reasons were a bit different though.  In past, my extra 100+ pounds made me self conscious this time, the deflated girls were the issue.  And by issue, I mean that the tech had to take two extra films of the right size because of the "wrinkle" that was in the way.  UGH!  

Even with the reminder of the video and the inconvenient shrinkles, I wouldn't change this journey at all.  God has given me a tool that actually is working for me.  For that, I am thankful!!!
"I praise you [God] because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well." ~Psalm 139:14

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Lost the Insulation

An unexpected change since weight loss is that I am often cold.  As I sit here typing right now, my hands are like ice cubes.  I have a throw in my lap at work most days.  I've "borrowed" the heating pad from CME's side of the bed and like it on my feet at night. I use to be the person who wouldn't wear a coat unless the temps were in the teens or less.  Now, I am cold.  I guess with the extra weight came extra insulation.  
"I praise you [God] because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well." ~Psalm 139:14

A Little Frustration

For whatever reason, I have become a HUGE fan of shrimp.  I never really felt that I craved certain foods, but lately, I feel like I'm craving shrimp.  Not a bad thing necessarily, but when you can't find the nutrition information listed for a restaurant, it's a tad frustrating.

CME and I had dinner at Logan's Texas Roadhouse tonight.  He had a craving for steak (which is really unusual for him - probably been at least a year since he's had one) and I've been craving shrimp for a couple of days now.  It's hard to believe, but shrimp has definitely been on my brain.  For someone who rarely ate any shellfish at all...it's what I WANT now.  -shrug-

I ordered the Southwest Grilled Shrimp appetizer as my entree.  It was a perfect choice, in my opinion.  There were 6 shrimp on the skewer and I asked for them to add just a little extra seasoning.  (I. like. flavor.)  The avocado, corn, tomato and black bean "salsa" that it came with was good too.  I didn't eat any of the tortilla chips.  Anyway...I've tried to find the nutrition information since I've been home, but haven't been successful.  I thought restaurants HAD to make the nutritional information known.  I guess I could use the "Contact Us" form, but I want it at my fingertips!  LoL  The only thing I can compare it too to try to figure out nutritional information is Applebee's grilled shrimp skewer.  (90 cals/14 g protein)  Problem there is I don't know how many/how large of shrimp, etc. are included at Applebee's.  Regardless, grilled shrimp, avocado and black beans all have protein and are low cal/low fat, so I'm going to continue to believe I made a good choice.  It tasted yummy, for sure!
"I praise you [God] because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well." ~Psalm 139:14

Friday, January 4, 2013

Bow-legged NSV

One day last week, CME said, "So did you know that you're bow-legged?"  

Really?  I'm bow-legged?  Ummm...no, can't say that I knew that.  Mainly because I cannot remember a time in my life that my thighs weren't rubbing against each other!  Seriously.

I was in marching band in high school and I can remember having to put Vaseline on my inner thighs to make it through practices and parades.  They would still get sore and really red, but at least this way they didn't bleed.  Yes, at one point my thighs bled from them rubbing together.  Nice, huh?  

Anyhoo...I caught a glimpse in the mirror today and had to stop and take a picture.  Can you see it?!  There is a gap between my thighs!!!  I don't know that I qualify as bow-legged, but there is definitely a noticeable difference!  Thank you God for another NSV!

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

First Post of 2013

So how do I want to start the new year on my blog?  How about a really cool story about how God uses some of the strangest ways to connect people?  

Long story, but I was told tonight, by a stranger [at the time], that God has used my blog to help prepare them for their upcoming surgery.  What an encouragement that was to me!  This person happens to be having surgery next week through the same bariatric center and surgeon that I used and stumbled across my blog from the weight loss surgery forum that I frequent.  So here you have a "local" person find me through the world wide web.  Coincidence?  Oh wait, I don't believe in those...  ;-)

Upon their request, I called this person and we were able to discuss a few questions that were still looming in their mind.  I so remember where my brain was the week before surgery.  I remember just wanting to talk and talk and talk.  (Yes, those that know me know I like to talk anyway...)  I remember the emotions.  I remember the excitement and anticipation.  By the end of our conversation, we had prayed and I let this person know that if they have questions, now or after, that I am just a phone call or text away.  I know the surgery date...and time... (and facility).  I know the surgeon.  And now, I know the person.  They will continue to be in my prayers and at surgery time I will be lifting them all before God.

How on earth does a forty-five minute conversation start with, "Hi.  Is this <person>?  Hi.  This is Deedra..."  then end with, "I love you."?  It's because God connects people...through ways we may never even imagine...and He gives us a love for others that is beyond comprehension!
"I praise you [God] because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well." ~Psalm 139:14