Hi Everyone 😊
Sorry for not getting back to this sooner. Life has been getting in the way. You know how that can happen? There have been some major life highlights in between posts that I will fill you in on over the next week or so. I am sure a lot of you will definitely relate to our stage in life and the events that have taken place.
Anyway, where was I? That's right, I had just come back from Brisbane and two weeks post op.
So, you think the surgery is the hard part? Wrong!!! It's a learning curve, a very very steep learning curve of which I just blundered my way through. Still am in fact.
I can remember my first eating out experience when we got home. We had always loved going out for dinner and supporting our local restaurants and especially our fave spot, the "local pub" which has been renovated and is just a great spot. They do a FANTASTIC steak. It is the best in Rockhampton in our opinion.
Deciding to go out for dinner for the first time post op, was really me trying to get back to normal and so we went out the first week we got home. So it was roughly just after the three week mark. Doh! Mistake #196 😂😂
I knew it was too early for me to have steak and actually too early for me to have really a lot of things on the menu but I chose the fettuccine meatballs and mash. I actually thought that I would handle the mince squashed up with some sauce and I knew 90% of it was going to be eaten by my boys as the mash and the fettuccine are big no no's post op. Potato, Pasta and bread sit like bricks and cause a lot of discomfort.
The first rule of thumb when you start eating again is to make sure you focus first and foremost on protein. That is your main goal. Protein, Protein Protein!!! It is your new mantra. Along with Sip, Sip, Sip..... it sounds like fun right? Well, I mean water 😊 I couldn't drink tap water it was too painful, again too heavy. So it was important for me to get fluids in via more alkaline waters purchased, protein waters or a smidge of diet cordial in with the tap water. I usually stick with FIJI Water, or higher PH waters although I don't think this is a good idea to continue on with. I should attempt to start drinking normal water again...
Before eating, its a good idea to not sip/drink any fluids for about half hour before or a half hour after eating. This allows for as much room as possible for your solids as the water will compete for space. Also, drinking anything with bubbles will get you somewhere between uncomfortable to incredibly painful and also there goes any chance of eating dinner as its all about space!
Another hard and fast rule is you should also try to chew every bite for at least 20 seconds before swallowing. Eating only till satiation not to the point of "full". This is a hard lesson to learn as earlier on (for me) I would only feel full and feel the pain from over eating after that last spoonful 😏. I may only have had four or five mouthfuls but by the time I stopped eating it was too late! Pain, nausea and regret followed every single time.
There are a lot of rules 🤪 and I was a slow learner because it took me months to understand what and when to eat.
Back at that first dinner date with my fambam though, I had had about three spoonfuls and I was done. I felt like there was an elephant sitting on my chest and the pain was just increasing. I started producing copious amounts of saliva😳 and I knew I was going to be sick.
I hobbled out of there with my son supporting me. We walked up past the hotel and into the dark and I started vomiting. When I say vomiting..... its a little different to that..... its more like a regurgitation? It is hard work. It is hard to explain but without going into too gory a detail... ok, well I will because I get that if you are reading this far, you are probably really interested in the process and hey! I am an honest gal. I will just give it to you like it is.
The vomiting is more like your food is rising back up (I think they call it floating back up). Really I'm not trying to be disgusting but if you have fur babies and they have ever been sick then that is kind of what it looks like. Just saying.... It feels like you could choke and it is really really exhausting!! Also, your mouth is filling up with saliva and ewww, just ewww. 😔🤢🤮
So there I was, harking up my dinner on the side of the road with Tom saying stuff like "you know mum .... everyone is going to think you've had a huge night and you can't handle your drink!!" 😩 😳 If you know me, you would know that I don't imbibe at all (very very rarely) and the thought that someone was seeing me like that was mortifying! How embarrassing... for me. For the boys... not so much, they thought it was hilarious! 🤪 🤪
My first night out for dinner was not a success (although for everyone else it was highly entertaining) and I decided that just for a little while I wouldn't do that to myself again.
I should introduce my lovely Dietician who I see in person when I am in Brisbane but I also have telephone consults with every other week when I'm home in Rockhampton.
Her name is Nicola Fox and she is based in Paddington, Brisbane. I really like Nicola. 😊 She's a straight shooter and gets down to business. I give her every gory detail so as to allow her all the info so that she can give me the best possible options going forward with food plans etc. She has been instrumental in my recovery and is always really quick to get back to me with in between queries.
At about 6 weeks you should be able to start eating more normal foods like chicken, mince and fish. I was a little late bloomer and I had to go back into the puree stage as I didn't heal as quickly as others do.
I had a lot of reflux and a very small food capacity. I found I was needing to eat very small bits all throughout the day. I can remember one consult with Nic, when I was telling her that at night I am just like a baby... "I get home from work Nic, and if I haven't organised anything for dinner I just cry and want to take myself off to bed. I don't have any energy whatsoever and I am a hangry!!! starving!!! emotional wreck!!!!"
We went over what I was doing throughout the day and it turns out I had completely misunderstood my directions and I wasn't eating enough. I was only having three meals per day on a very limited capacity and I was literally starving myself. I was so happy when she said "What are you doing? Eat girl eat!" Yay!! I thought I had to really not snack just like pre - op. Ummmm, no. 😒 😒
We are only eating the very smallest amounts in that first month or so and you really need to try and be mindful of what you're eating but also eating small amounts more often is the go. For me it was a turning point because I felt I was a lot nicer to people haha. Not so hangry 😔
I had my surgery on the 2nd June and it wasn't until the very end of September that I noticed I was able to eat without feeling like I was having that incredible pressure on my chest and reaching for the vomit bowl after each and every meal.
Life was getting back to normal and I was losing weight at a pretty good rate. Not crazy fast but definitely not slowly either. I was making better choices when I went out and it was definitely on the up and up.
The above pic shows my app with my progress report. It didn't start with the 112kgs which was pre-op. It shows a starting point of 107kg which was my weight on the morning of my surgery. So all up, I have lost about 34 kgs so far.
Its a pretty good weight loss and my first goal was to get to 85 kgs. On the morning I did, I thought my friggin App would go off 😂 🤪 Like, maybe some music or something celebratory like streamers and balloons on the screen? Nope. Nothing. This is what it gave me.
Yep. Nothing. Just 84.9 kg.
WTF? HELLO!!! Health Body Monitor people. Please inject some personality and encouragement into your very very boring app. We need as much encouragement and cheering as we can get you know?!
So here I am just after 5 months post op and I am getting back to normal and this morning I asked Nicola for a very strict eating plan because I now feel that if given the choice I could make some bad choices.... please see me being a weekend warrior (haha I love that term).
My builder husband hates hates hates all the weekend warriors at Bunnings. 😂 😂😂 You should hear him go off in there. Of course it is one of my favourite things to do on a weekend and of course I love making him go with me......because he makes me laugh... he gets so cranky haha!!! 😂 😂 😂.
Yes, being a weekend warrior and not making great choices but hey thats life and I manage about 3 of these little babies to his whole packet and together we make a great team. 🤙🏻 Life is pretty straight without Twisties 🤪
This photo was about 3 months post op (excuse the dark circles under the eyes, I was still doing it pretty rough AND really don't forget that warriors do not wear makeup and they look pretty crappy whilst doing yard work 🤪)
Getting back on track, last week I asked Nicola for a meal plan and to have weekly updates for a little bit because I feel that I need monitoring and accountability at the moment. That's how it works. It is not smooth sailing and I think the best you can give yourself is a pat on the back for the work you have done and if you feel like you are slipping then dust yourself off and get back on track. That is life. You refocus and make some changes. You adjust your habits because this is for life. It is not a diet.
Just having that conversation with Nicola and making myself accountable, I found that I kick started my weight loss and I now feel more in control. At the moment I am 78 kgs and I am really not sure where I want to be. After the non event of the last goal achievement I set myself a new goal of 75kg. I will wait and see how I look and feel when I get there.
Up until recently I had not exercised because working six days a week I found I just didn't have the energy to factor that in as well. I have lost a lot of my muscle (I didn't think I had any until I lost it!!) and that is why if you go down this path, or you are on this path then remember this: Protein Protein Protein.
Just in the last few weeks though I have started yoga and pilates and hopefully I will find some time to factor in some weights. My beautiful friend Beth has offered to do up a program for me. However, I am sometimes very much afraid of her so I will let you know if she can be trusted.....I am wary 😳 😳 😉 😂 😂
Respect Beth 😘 😳 🤔
Please continue to drop me a line if you have questions and especially comment if you are brave enough. 😊 I promise we don't bite!
Over the next week I might talk about non weight subjects and get into the nitty gritty of what has kept me so busy these last few weeks. Its such a great time of life but remember when we all had a lot more time? Where did that go to and what are we doing so differently now to have so little of it???
Christmas is right around the corner and that excites me more than I should let on ( I am a big kid when it comes to Christmas!!) I love love love everything about it.... ❤️❤️❤️
Until next time beautiful girls
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