Thursday, July 28, 2016

Appointment Made...Again!

Today was a productive day!  The Pulmonologist's office finally called with my appointment!  Tomorrow I will get off work a bit early and drive over to Nampa (yes, he's located a bit away from here) to fill out my 13 pages of paperwork.  Then on August 11th, I have my consultation with Dr. Sadaj.  From there, I guess I will see what kind of sleep study he schedules for me.  I will be glad to get this one out of the way.  On Monday, I have my appointment with the psychiatrist as well.  That should be interesting!

Anyway, I wanted to make an update...but now it's time to get to bed.

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

What a Difference an Afternoon Makes

After my dismal day and feeling in a funk because of the bad news about the long wait for the sleep study, I went back to work to finish my day.  I decided to make a phone call to Jill the patient specialist again and tell her about the appointment date and what my options were, or anyway, what do I do for the next 7 weeks while I wait for it.  Of course I couldn't reach her, but I did leave a voice mail.  I was pleasantly surprised after a couple hours of working with 2 of my agents at their desks that I came back to discover she had left me 2 voice mails.  The first one was to tell me that she was going to call around to some other doctors, not necessarily affiliated with my hospital (we have at least 5 major hospitals in our city) to see if there was something available that was sooner.  The 2nd voice mail was to tell me she found a doctor that had availability mid August and she sent them over a referral!  Wow!  This moves everything up by a month and I am so grateful.  I called her back and left another voice message thanking her for going above and beyond to help me out.

What a relief!  And what a nice thing to do!

In other was Couch to 5K.  After Monday's attempt, I went into the idea with some trepidation and concern.  On Monday I literally made myself sick pushing myself to complete.  I had a couple moments during where I felt like I needed to vomit and did a little bit into a Kleenex I had handy.  I don't think this is the kind of fun and feeling of accomplishment I was seeking.  Perhaps someone with my extra weight, age and fitness level shouldn't be pushing myself so hard.  Maybe the fact I had to leave work early due to illness because of Monday's workout, was a warning to me to step back and take stock of the ramifications of the whole thing?  Maybe these are all just rationalizations?

I made myself get out of bed and tried to do the workout, but I immediately started feeling ill on the first run interval.  The program was also increasing the intervals by 1 extra minute and so this further worried me as the last one was so difficult.  I self-negotiated myself to instead do the run sections at a very brisk walk and then the walk sections at my regular walking speed.  I felt a little bit like a failure and like I was letting myself down, but in reality, at the end of it all, I am still sweating just as much, walked nearly the same distance, went the same time frame, so I shouldn't beat myself up about this.  I made a mental promise to myself that as soon as I can do this same day, and do it running instead of walking, all the way through, then I will move onto the next day and so forth,  It's OK.  I'm not just on the couch.  I AM up and moving.

Tuesday, July 26, 2016


I finally got the call from the Pulmonary office for my 1st appointment.  SEPTEMBER 14th!  What the heck?  That's 7 weeks away.  That's a crazy long time away.  I am not happy.  And this doesn't even take into consideration the sleep study itself.  So yuck and yuck again,

I don't know why, but this put me into a depressive funk today.  I need to find my silver linings, but I guess I just want to get this over with so I can move forward.  Of course this means I have to wait on my surgery until well over that.  :(  Just feeling some frustration...but it is what it is.


I must have done too much yesterday and wasn't quite fit enough to handle week 4 in my Couch to 5 K.  I was a miserable mess all day.  At 4:00 in the afternoon, I went home from work, totally exhausted.  I spent the rest of the day resting and eventually crawled into bed to lay there until I finally fell asleep fairly late, but am better rested today.  It's now the next day and I am facing another long day of work.  Ugh...

I got assertive yesterday and worked up the gumption to call the patient specialist for Dr. Korn to see if she could see what the hold up is on the referral they sent over for the sleep study.  Unfortunately, I went to voice mail so didn't really get to do much more than leave a message.  But, it was a long message.  I hope she got it all.

Today is my dog's first birthday.  Ozzie and Copper are now 1 year old.  Time flies!


Monday, July 25, 2016

Week 4....I'm Dying

I finished Day 1 of Week 4 in my Couch to 5K challenge.  I think I am going to die.  Remember people, I am terribly unfit.  Easily 100 pounds overweight right now.  I pounded the hell out of that treadmill this morning.  Yes, I completed it.  I truly thought at least 2 times I was going to have to stop as my legs felt like they were seizing up on me.  But, I didn't.  And, I am pretty sure my body is going to make me pay for it ALL DAY.

Nevertheless, here are my results!

Over the weekend, I did some more blog reading and video watching.  I need to stay inspired and well prepared with knowledge about what I am up against.  It wasn't easy either.  I am so weak when it comes to giving into my husband's snack attacks.  I did try to not keep up with him though.  That man can tuck away 15 popsicles, 6 doughnuts, 6 zingers, whatever I make for dinner, Ruffles with bean dip and canned nuts,  And, that's just Sunday! And he's a normal sized guy.  With all that crap around the house, I invariable find myself eating it too.  I can't be doing that anymore!  Plus it makes me feel like death warmed over the next morning.  All the rougher on me to finish my workout, I have no doubt.

Everything I have been reading is that the surgery is doing all the work for me the first 7 months post-op.  It's a tool...and in that 7 months, it's my responsibility to relearn everything I ever knew or did about healthy eating.  It's not uncommon for people to regain weight after, or get on a slippery slope back into bad habits.  I DO NOT want to be in that statistic.  I am only doing this once.  When I get a healthy weight I am going to allow a 5 pound fluctuation, but I can't let things get out of control.

I can't!

Friday, July 22, 2016

1st Nutritionist Appointment

Yesterday I met with the nutritionist for the 1st time, in preparation for my surgery,  It's fortunate that I have been reading a lot of blogs and articles about what to do and expect as far as diet goes, because I am quite sure I wouldn't have a clue after listening to this women  zip through material.  There wasn't a minute to absorb or respond.  But, I do have the paper literature that she gave me, so I can look it over and work this on my own. Still no call from Pulmonary, so I wait it out.

I did complete Week 3 on Couch to 5 K.....GO ME!

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Drama Mama

Whew, what a week and it's only Wednesday!  As mentioned in an earlier post, I had a mammogram last Friday.  Once it was done, I pretty much forgot all about it.  Then yesterday, I come out of a long meeting at work to discover my doctor left me a voice message to call her office.  I look at the clock and it's already after 5:00 PM, so the office is closed.  Of course, I do what any one would do when faced with a worrisome call wanting to discuss "lab results"...I FREAK OUT!  I came home from work worried and upset and fell into an immediate depression.  I have breast cancer...I'm going to have to endure lots of tests and treatments...I could die....I am definitely not going to be approved for my surgery now...  ALL these things looped through my head.  I arrived home and filled my face with anything I could find (emotional eater?  I guess so!)  I put a Korean drama on the TV so that I had to force myself to read subtitles and divert my brain from worrying, but not before scouring through google, trying to find some reassurance that the just because the doctor calls to discuss lab results, doesn't mean there is a problem.  But, the majority of information out there is the complete opposite.  Usually, there is no call UNLESS there is a problem.

I knew the doctor's office opens at 8:00 AM, so I wait until exactly 8:07 and call.  I get routed to a service and am placed in the forever call center loop until finally someone comes on the phone and tell me they will have to get a message to a nurse to call me back.  I stop her in her tracks and tell her that I have been stressed ALL night and need to speak with a nurse now...I will wait.  They must have heard the panic in my voice and place me on hold.  Thankfully, the doctors nurse gets on the line eventually to tell me....everything is normal.  Oh my goodness....I thanked her, hung up and proceeded to fall into a million pieces for just a minute and break down in tears.  What a relief!!!

In other news...I completed Days 1 and 2 of Weeks 3's Couch to 5K.  This mornings seemed to go by in a blur because my brain was on breast cancer panic.  BUT, I did it.  Go Me!

Saturday, July 16, 2016

Thinking About my Other Half This Evening...

Today was a very nice day.  I got spend the majority of it with my sweet husband.  He has been running a route all week, well, actually a few weeks.  We haven't really got to see each other a lot, so this morning, instead of driving straight through to Twin Falls to pick up his car and come back home, he stopped by our home and picked me up and I got to travel with him.  We had a wonderful time, visiting, laughing, sharing our weeks anecdotes...just being together.  When we made it back to Boise, we went out to lunch at our favorite Italian restuarant (totally non-diet related) and thoroughly enjoyed ourselves.

My husband is a very caring and generous person.  On more than one occasion, I have seen him reach out and help another in need.  He wouldn't like me to talk about this, but one time, we were standing in a long line at the store, and there was an older lady that was a couple customers ahead of us that was clearly having a difficult time paying for her items.  She was frantically on her cell phone trying to get hold of someone to help her and at the same time scrambling through her purse trying to find some money, or another card to pay for her items.  The line was quite long, and some people were getting impatient, and my husband silently walks up to the lady, and asks the cashier to please take his card so that her items could be bought.  The cashier clearly was grateful because they didn't seem to know what to do with the lady, and she was so surprised.  After the purchase was done, and her items were bagged, she came to us and asked us to please let her pay us back and how could she get hold of us...and of course my husband told her not to worry about it.  He was happy to do this and wanted her to have a better day.  She was almost in tears and said, "God Bless You", and admittedly, we are truly blessed.  We have been given much and we have a strong love between us, and in and of itself, that is more than enough.

Tomorrow is Sunday, and we will enjoy another day together before we have to part ways again and head to work in our separate cities, but we take comfort in knowing that we will have another weekend to look forward to.

Friday, July 15, 2016

A Little Later

I am home from work on my lunch break.  I've been hungry today and that has not bode me very well.  So, some popcorn, and a couple granola bars later, I guess I will survive.  I stopped and bought a chicken sandwich on my drive home, which is also out of character, because I have tried to avoid all fast food at lunch for a few months now.  Great.

This morning I had a mammogram and a bone density test at work.  They had one of the local hospitals schedule the mobile unit to come to our work and take care of it.  My doctor has been pleading with me to get this done for a few years, but I never did.  I am not sure why other than I am a big chicken and it seemed awkward.  But, it's done now and I will have results in 10 days.  Additionally, they did a bone density test to check for osteoporosis.  I came out in the normal range for a woman my age, so I am glad about that.

And that's about all I have to write about.  Until I get through all these appointments and get the last one scheduled, my topics are rather boring.  I will have to think of some things that make me tick.

Week 2 Complete

I finished day 3 of week two on the Couch to 5 K challenge.  I really, really had to push myself though because I am having one of my classic low energy days.  I get these every now and again, where I feel like I am walking through a fog mentally and physically I want to just roll up with a pillow and sleep.  These episodes are more apt to happen when I really need to get things done, or my husband and I have a hundred errands to run on a Saturday.  I always make myself push through because in my real life (not so much in here) I try to downplay things and not act like a psycho hypochondriac about how I am feeling.  If I told people how I was feeling most of the time, they would think exactly that.  But, in here it's safe to say exactly what I am going through.  Some day I am going to come back here and read this and then realize how different I am (now) because I no longer have days like this.

But, today, I am having one.  At least it's Friday and that means I get to have a weekend soon.  Yay.  Just have to make it through my workday.  But, hey, at least I made it through my workout.

One thing I noticed while I was working out today is that I love to guzzle water.  It's so satisfying to have lots and lots of cool water slide down my parched throat.  I am going to miss that.  I have been reading a lot of information about this surgery that I am facing, and I have had quite a few surgeries in the past, but none of them were on my stomach.  So, it goes without saying, this is very new territory for me.  Reading about the day after surgery and the patient is only allowed to swab their lips and mouth with a wet sponge and not swallow any actual water makes my tongue swell.  I am kind of dreading that part.  I dislike the feeling of being thirsty.  So, today, I did no water guzzling,  I only took little sips and tried to swallow slowly to see what it's like.  I will survive.  It will be tough at first and then once I get through that day there will be a new challenge, but that one will be behind me.

Last night, after work, my son and I walked around playing Pokemon Go.  It's funny because it is such a phenomenon that there are people all over the place playing...groups of them sitting in one spot to lure the pokemon's in.  But, my son was very proud that we were able to bag Pikachu!  LOL
And, we walked around for awhile and there's nothing wrong with that!

Thursday, July 14, 2016

Just Stuff

There isn't anything new to write about, but I feel compelled to write a little something anyway.  Last night one of my sons called me to say hello and I finally told him about the WLS.  He was surprised, at first, and perhaps a little worried, but then after he asked me some questions that set his mind at ease, he seemed very excited and will be supportive.  He even offered to help pay for it!  LOL! Of course, I told him I had that covered.

I am still waiting to hear from the pulmonary doctors for my consult.  I had just one feeler call a couple days ago and then nothing since then.  I wish I could just get these things scheduled so I could carry on with my plans.

More later...

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

In Where I Start the Day Off Complaining

Not that I want every post to be a negative rant about how depressed, frustrated or tired I am, I did NOT want to get on that treadmill this morning and do my Couch to 5K work out.  But I did it ANYWAY!

I have been working the late shift this week which means 11-8 PM.  Getting off work at 8 PM is cruel and unusual punishment when you are trying to eat sensibly and get exercise.  I am eating dinner way too late and going to bed with food in tummy that still feels apparent when I wake up the next morning.  I am moving rather sluggish today and didn't want to get out of bed, let alone, jump on the treadmill.  Plus, I now have a blister on the back of my heel, which I knew was going to be a problem with my new shoes.  But, I was able to wear my old ones and they were loose enough not to be a problem.  So, Hey!  I did it!

Here is a question that I want to do research on.  Why is it when people lose weight, they have such big heads?  It's like this smaller body supporting a massive head.  I already have a pretty big head, so I am not looking forward to this phenomenon.  And usually, it's not because they still have fatty faces or just seems like their faces look longer and gaunt.  I was recently reading a book about a man in England that lost a whole lot of weight, and he was looking and working for that magic number of 168 pounds.  He started his journey at 412 pounds.  At the end of the book he reached his goal, despite being upset about all the comments from friends that he was too thin or that he needed to stop losing weight because he looked unhealthy.  In his mind, he needed to achieve that magic number to feel like he accomplished his goal.  This book had no pictures so I could see what he looked like, so I googled his name and there were lots of pictures.  In my opinion, he looked a bit like a concentration camp survivor.  And yes, 168 pounds is probably a healthy weight for a man his height, but there must be a period of adjustment after such drastic measures.  I wonder how I will turn out.

I do plan on exercising as I go.  I hope that helps.

I watched a movie last night called "Unsupersize Me".  A guy who took on a totally plant based diet, found that his health improved and with exercise, his body looked and felt better.  He worked as a trainer at his own health club and he decided to take a woman who was 345 pounds and try to turn her life around by being her personal coach to lose weight based on these principals.  With him as her trainer, she did lose 200 pounds, she was totally vegan and worked out hard and they documented the journey.  She did great, but once again, kind of a big head (or differently shaped face) afterwords.  I don't's strange.  But, I can live with it!  Big head, here I come!

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Mind and Body Image

Today isn't a workout day and yesterday morning after my painful attempt at that, I cut out the ingrown toenail, so tomorrow morning is hopefully going to be less painful.  All day yesterday, I had a sensation in my legs that demanded more exercise.  They wanted to stretch!  I did take an additional 15 minute walk around the block on a stolen break, but it didn't feel like enough.  I guess it's good that the body was wanting that.  Work makes it difficult though.  As I am sure is the case for most people.  I am allowed breaks, but it's hard to actually take them because of the fact we are always short handed and not enough other leads are ever available.

Yesterday morning I received a call from the Pulmonary office.  No appointment yet, but they asked me a few questions seeing if I have had a sleep study done before and if there were medical records to view.  Since this is all new to me, I said I didn't, but they didn't make an appointment with me yet. They said someone would be calling for that.  So, more waiting.  At least it was something, I guess.

Today I thought I would talk a little bit about how I got here.  What made me think now was the right time to proceed with this surgery and not years ago.  I honestly don't have a solid answer on this other than I wasn't ready before.  I'd like to imagine how much richer of a life I'd had if I did this 10 years ago, and the funny thing is, I wouldn't have been ready, but not for the reasons you'd think.  You would think that I wouldn't have been ready because of the expense, and that is partly true.  Or maybe the danger involved, and that also might have been a consideration.  But really, the main reason is because I wasn't deserving.  I didn't think I was important enough to have such a drastic measure given.  My personal worth wasn't in a good place and I really wasn't emotionally in a good place.  I do believe, before undertaking such a big step, there has to be more emotional security available, a support system and the confidence to pull it off.  Ten years ago my life was in turmoil and the idea of something so life changing would have sent me in a tailspin.  However, I do feel sad that I have missed out on so much because of my weight.  And the only reason for that is because I have always been my own worst critic.  Such as:  "Let's go swimming,"  "Let's go horseback riding"  "Let's go to a splash park"  "Let's climb that hill" "Go buy a new dress" All of these statements would bring me anxiety because I knew I had limitations.  Life had taught me this.  And here are some examples:
  • When I was 16 I visited a health center while on vacation.  When leaning against a ping pong table the leg bent beneath my weight!
  • When trying to get to my seat on an airplane, I noticed that the people already seating were looking at me in dread.  They actually thought I might be the one they would be seated next to on the plane.
  • "would you like a booth or a table" at a restaurant.  Booths can be miserable when you are squeezed into them.  Having to admit this to my dining partner and then taking the table that is right out in the middle of the room.
  • Feeling excited about a mountain "team building" hike with my work team and finding out 5 minutes into the climb that I would have to turn around and return to the car because I felt like I was going to die from exertion
  • When riding a bicycle with my son, having someone yell out the window of their car, "You're so fat"
  • When walking outside and feeling very positive about my progress having another person yell out of their car window, "I love fatties"
How can any of the examples above not illustrate to me that I am some enormous elephant of a woman that isn't worthy of any consideration?  Well, these moments are damaging.  And this was only a small sample of some of my experiences.  I am intelligent to know that what other people say and do are not really important.  They shouldn't define me.  I would like to say that they haven't, but its obvious that they have.  

You would also think that the simple answer is just to exercise and lose some weight.  And yes, I can do that...I can do that for 3-6 months and restrict myself and deny opportunities with family and friends because I am on this journey to looking as thin as they are.  But honestly, most of them know nothing about the hardships of that journey.  The self discipline required and the tremendous disappointment and self loathing that comes into play when there is a set back and the brain turns itself to destruction mode and I am right back making those bad food and health choices.  The weight come back and I start the slide down that slippery slope of no return.  It is such an incredible disappointment.  But, what if I had a tool that would comfort me during those moments.  Something that would keep me on track and hold my body at bay while I work on healing my mind?  That is my hope with this surgery.

And they all lived happily ever after...mind and body.

I don't suppose there are any magic pills.  There is always going to be hard work.  I am more than willing to put in the work.  But, I don't think there is anything wrong with receiving some help.

Monday, July 11, 2016

Monday Morning You Sure Look Fine....NOT!

 I sit here, with my 2 poached eggs and turkey bacon with whole wheat toast, sweating profusely and whimpering a little because of the blister trying to form on my right heel.  The blister is due to the new Nike running shoes my husband bought me on Saturday.  Yay for cute new shoes!  Boo for blisters.  My left foot felt great all through the workout.  My right foot didn't.  Between overcompensating for an ingrown toenail and then pushing away from the end of my shoe, I made the back of my foot rub and ....ouch!  At least I don't have to wear them again until Wednesday.

This week I am working the 11-8 shift.  It's not my favorite one since that means I don't get home until closer to 9:00 PM, but it does mean I have some extra time in the morning to accomplish as much as I want to.  The problem with that is, I am not a morning person.  To be fair, however, that is not a good excuse.  So, I made myself get out of bed at the usual time this morning.  I read for about half an hour until the dogs whining made me nuts and I released them from their kennels to get them outside.  The topic of my research this morning was sleep studies and when does someone know they have cured sleep apnea? Rather dry reading.  I am still all stirred up about this crazy sleep study I will probably have to do.  And so I spend $100's on it along with the purchase of a cpap machine and then put it into a closet after 2 months?  Yes, probably.  But, to be fair, I do have some concern I am suffering the affects of bad sleep.  A few times in recent weeks, I have been sitting in my car, just making the short drive to and from work, usually in the afternoons at lunch time, and I have felt an overwhelming feeling of exhaustion and a sensation of falling into that trance before you go into sleep mode.  Once, I was sitting at a traffic light and had that feeling and it gave me a sensation of being totally out of control of my consciousness.  It scared me a little and I actually yelled at myself (out loud) to "knock it off!".  It was quite startling.  I considered the idea I might be narcoleptic.  I did some morning research on that one too...but it is doubtful that was the issue.  I just need some rest.  A person shouldn't wake up after 7 or 8 hours feeling like they never slept and still have heavy eyes and yawn constantly.  My motivation to get anything done other than what is required is quite difficult.  And then, going to work every day and trying to think on my feet...also a chore.  It sucks to be 100 pounds overweight.  All in all, I am a grouchy grump.

Sunday, July 10, 2016

Musings and Contemplations

I have been incredibly lazy this Sunday.  I woke up rather late, but it wasn't the first time I woke up.  We had quite a thunderstorm going on that woke me up much earlier, and the rain was hitting the window rather loudly.  It's July.  It doesn't usually rain here at all this time of the year, so it was rather strange.  I crawled back into bed after a quick run to the bathroom and quickly drifted back off to sleep.  I don't normally sleep so late any day of the week, but it was nearly 10:00 AM when I woke up next.  I was a little bit ashamed of myself.  I've just been so tired.

When I met with Dr. K on Thursday, he mentioned that he wanted me to have a pulmonary consult before we will move forward with the surgery.  What that really means is he thinks I may have sleep apnea.  It's not the first time this topic has come up with my husband and my son who both have claimed that I snore or at least sometimes act like I have stopped breathing and then come back with a loud snort or something in my sleep.  I have always assumed they were exaggerating and trying to embarrass me. (my son anyway).  My husband has been somewhat concerned, but never pushed me to see the doctor about it and quite frankly, I have a hard enough time falling asleep at night without having to do one of those sleep studies where I am in a weird lab and have wires and things attached to me and someone is observing me on a camera.  I don't like it!  But, now that the doctor has planted the idea that I could DIE in my sleep I haven't had a decent nights sleep since.  I understand the necessity and even though I don't want to do this, I sure want to go ahead and get it over with.  Dr. K is the first doctor I have talked to that has referred to my age as impactful.  The irony of it all is that a few weeks earlier my primary doctor told me I should have the surgery, and she referred to me as a 'young' woman.  LOL!  Of course, she is wrong, and Dr. K is correct, I am 53 years old and there isn't a whole lot young about that!

I feel bad for my husband...I have talked about this surgery all weekend and though he seems patient I don't think he wants me to talk non-stop about it.  And he is very supportive of my decision, but I don't think he thinks I need it.  He keeps telling me that he loves me the way I am.  I know he does, and I love him for that, but, I wish I could say that I love me the way I am.  I don't hate myself.  I know I have worth and I know I am a good person.  But, admittedly, I have sat on the sidelines of life for most of my life.  When I was working on my paperwork, they wanted me to list the lowest weight I have been as an adult, and when that was.  It was 1988.  Seriously.  I weighted 148 pounds and still thought I was fat because of my brain fat.  In 1988 I was 26 years old.  That is a really long way from 53.

If I am being absolutely honest, and I really should be, while I am pursuing this at this point in my life, I am going through this to better my health.  But, another part is completely vain and centered around the way I look.  I don't really care about the fashion side or the beauty side or wearing a swimsuit (heaven forbid) but, I want to be normal.  I want to fit into a crowd and not stand out as the big person.  I want to walk into ANY store and find something to wear.  These are such simple things to want.  These are the kinds of things others take for granted.  I haven't ever been able to take these things for granted.

Saturday, July 9, 2016

Couch to 5K Week one Complete

I am pretty proud of myself.  I completed Week one of Couch to 5K.  Whew.  Because I am 100 pounds overweight, it is quite an accomplishment.  I am pretty sure I can handle next week, but if a week ever becomes hard to tackle, I will continue doing it until I feel ready to move to the next week.  Dr. K seemed concerned I was actually "running" and would prefer me to walk.  Honestly, I understand what he is talking about, but if I CAN do something and feel likes it's not too extreme, I will continue on.  If anything, it will help me get in shape or at least recover from my surgery easier.
Each time I go a little further and burn a few more calories!

Completed Week 1!

Speaking of surgery, yesterday I made the appointment with the dietitian.  Things are really coming together!  I still need to hear from the pulmonary lab to get my sleep study done, and I hope they call me soon.  Jill, from Dr. K's office said they can be pretty backed up.  I hope not too backed up.  So far, I am being pretty patient.

My husband was going to pull $1000 to contribute for my out of pocket costs.  Unfortunately, his accountant had not been billing him monthly as he assumed and sent him a $2500 bill this week for his services.  I guess I will have to wait and see if the funds are available next month.  I have about $2100 saved now and need about $3000 to cover insurance out of pocket for my medical appointments and surgery.  All considering, this is very reasonable!

This morning I am watching 2 of my grandchildren for an hour or so.  They are little angels and so easy to take care of.

Thursday, July 7, 2016

Post Doctor Appointment

Wow!  What a day.  I was a bit nervous going to my appointment this morning, I must confess.  I really had no idea what to expect!  The nurse met with me to go over my medications and medical history; surgeries and procedures.  Here is a low down on how the appointment went:
  •  I waited a bit for the Doctor to come in and visit with me.  He was pleasant and mostly straightforward.  I can only imagine that he talks to people about this day in and day out, so instead of providing information in advance, he waits to see what questions I have.  I told him I was leaning towards the Gastric Bypass and he talked me out of that, said he thought the Sleeve Gastrectomy was better in my situation, age and the results will be just as satisfactory with less complications down the road.  This was a very surprising outcome, because I went in thinking one thing and left his office thinking another.
  • The 2nd thing the doctor discussed with me was that it was going to take 6 months of visits with him to qualify for the procedure with my insurance.  I knew that was going to be a possibility, but here it was in black in white.  Quickly my brain started doing the math and I could clearly see I was looking at January before I would be scheduled, and on top of that, new deductible, so my out of pocket was going to become much more.  Oh well... Additionally, I asked Dr. K how much weight did he need me to lose?  He said there wasn't a set amount, just not to gain any weight.  I told him that if I go on a weight loss diet I WILL lose weight, because that's how it works with me...I lose weight pretty fast but then I put it right back on.  He said he understood and he didn't want me to lose a lot of weight because then I will no longer qualify for the surgery,  Catch-22, right?  He wants me to just exercise and try to maintain where I am.  It's pretty cool that he understands this realistic in that we need to have a tool that will help us lose the weight and then we can work on keeping it off.
  • He also said he wanted me to visit with a psychologist to make sure I am mentally healthy to take on this huge change
  • He also said, because of my weight and age, he recommends a sleep study test.  This isn't an insurance requirement, but it is a doctor requirement.  He didn't want me not coming out of anesthesia or dying after my surgery because I stop breathing.  I know this is probably something I am long overdue for, but I sure was dreading it.
  • He then took me over to speak with the insurance specialist and set up appointment for the next 6 visits, talk about out of pocket costs and set up referrals for these other specialists I will need to see.
And this is where it all gets crazy:
  • She explained to me once again about the 6 month requirement with 3 consecutive months of visiting with a licensed doctor about weight loss.  She said my appointment today counted as the 1st one.  I asked her if the visit I had with my primary care physician in June would also count as 2.  She pulled up my medical charts and said, YES!  Dr. Sur had clearly stated on the visit it was in regards to obesity,  YAY!  I also saw the doctor in May because of my diabetes and the lovely doctor had mentioned my need to lose weight to stabilize the diabetes!  YAY again! She then looked back through my records and had no problem finding 3 more visits where she noted on the visit we discussed my need to lose weight and exercise.  Suddenly my 6 month/January projection just changed dramatically!!
  • She then told me I needed to have the 2 other appointments with the psychologist and the pulmonary consult and she would send referrals out to them to contact me for an appointment.
  • I also will need to meet with their dietitian to go over what I will need to do pre-op, post-op and the weeks and months after.
  • And the fun thing is...she took me out to reception after to check out and announced to the ladies there, "This is Shelley and she has already met her 6 month requirement!"  They all seemed as surprised as I was!
I head back to work, and about 2 hours later I get a voice message from the psychologists office to schedule my appointment.  It's August 1st!!  That's only 25 days away!  So, hopefully, I will hear from the pulmonary doctor in the next week or 2 and get that appointment too.  I hope they aren't too backed up.  :(

And, do you think I could concentrate at work this afternoon?  Not even a little bit!!

Doctor Day and Weekend Adventures

The day has come where I will finally meet the weight loss surgeon.  I have not an inkling on what to expect at this appointment other than maybe some vitals and then speak with the insurance specialist to start my paper work.  The unknown is always a bit scary, but I am trying my best to be brave.

Day Two was just completed on my Couch to 5K challenge.  It wasn't easy.  I can't imagine what it will be like when it really starts kicking my butt.  Although, at this moment, with sweat dripping down my neck, I can't imagine it much worse.

Over the last weekend, my husband and I were pretty busy doing outdoors things.  Since, when we are home, we are both pretty much couch potatoes, this was fairly unusual.  We took the dogs and went on a drive up around Crouch, Idaho, so we could see some forest and maybe put our fishing poles into the water.  It was a lovely day, warm and sunny, and seeing some trees was really refreshing for me.  It was pretty crowded up there along the water because it was the 4th of July weekend, but we eventually found this secluded camp spot off the highway a bit.  This site was perched way above the river, with a fairly steep climb down to the water. We decided to trek down there and sit by the water and let the dogs run.
vantage from the top of the hill looking down to the river.
All was good and well until I had to leave and climb back up the hill to our truck.  I made it about 3/4 up pretty easily but the reality of that last 1/4 way was making my lungs jump out of my throat.

I stopped 3/4 of the way up to take this photo.  While it was a nice photo, I really was only trying to keep my heart from jumping out of my body.  I didn't want my husband to worry, but I was so done.
I made it to the top, with my husband giving me a hand up the last giant step, but I was totally exhausted, breathing so hard that I felt like it was difficult to find any air, and feeling fairly sick to my stomach.  I had definitely done too much!  And I find this very frustrating.  When I was younger, I could have hiked that with no problem, even being overweight, but not anymore.

It really was a beautiful view.
When we made it to the top, I asked my husband to unlock the truck, so I could get in and die.  He was looking out over the view with the dogs and I was collapsed face first into the seat.  He asked me to come over and look at the view, but I told him I just needed to rest.  I was breathing so hard that I somehow inhaled a few flecks of dust (I assume) and that started a whole coughing fit that still bothered me into the next day.  At one point on our drive home, not too long after we left the site, he had to pull over so I could get out and throw up too.

What a lovely adventure!

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Couch to 5K

I decided I am going to try to use the app, Coach to 5K as a tool to help speed up my metabolism and lose some weight.  I finished day 1!  I honestly didn't think I could do this because, Shelley doesn't run.  In fact, Shelley has a difficult time consistently walking!  Day 1 entailed, a 5 minute walking warm up, then 6 intervals of running (I jogged) 1 minute and walking 1.5 minutes,  I finished up with 5 more minutes of walking and I was done.  I completed it!  I am sweating like a pig, but I did it!

Here is my proof of completion.  I will take a day off and then do day 2 on Thursday and day 3 on Saturday.

Here was my treadmill display when I was done.  It was projected to take 25 minutes, so I guess I did it right.  I didn't realize the program was built into the app, so I was silly and did the intervals with my phone's stop watch. Next time I will let the app do it for me.  I probably was supposed to do this at a faster pace than I did, but my heart rate was up there around 165, so probably I did it correctly by setting a pace I could manage.

Monday, July 4, 2016

Nothing New

I am in limbo land waiting for my appointment with the weight loss surgery doctor this week and wondering what all will happen during that appointment.  I still am unsure how far away I am from the actual surgery.  I have been devouring online blogs and articles.  I am sure nothing will prepare me for the reality of what my life will be post surgery.  All I can do is guess and hope my experience is the positive side of things and not so much the negative.