Thursday, May 29, 2014

In about 30 minutes...

I have to get in the shower and get ready to head down to the medical center.  Today is my pre-op appointment.  My surgery has been approved by my insurance company and now I just need to find out when they can do it and see how that coordinates with my family's schedule.

I'm glad my husband is going to be able to come to this appointment with me.  He'll remember to ask all the questions that I've forgotten.

I don't know whether to be anxious or excited about the beginning of this new journey.  I think I'm a little bit of both.

I was back and forth on my decision a bit until last Friday.  I'm still in physical therapy from my back surgery and my knees have been a little tweaky, so we're working on those too.  On Friday, we did several sets of walking lunges and in the middle of the second set, I felt something in my left knee go, "POP!"  It hurt hurt more later.  By Saturday, it was hugely swollen and very painful.  I went to my knee doctor's office on Tuesday and got a couple more shots.  He knows about (and APPLAUDS!) my decision to get sleeved.  He's letting me hold off on an MRI and such for my knee until that happens.  Hopefully, I'll evade knee surgery this one last time and will lose enough weight with the sleeve that I won't be at risk for it any longer.

That "POP!" was the last straw.

I'm doing this.

My ass better start packing.

Friday, May 9, 2014

Six weeks after...

the last time I wrote a blog post, I had to have back surgery.  It's been something I was avoiding for nearly two decades, but this time I had to face the inevitability of it.  I had a severe L5/S1 herniation and the disc was impinging upon my sciatic nerve so much you could have stabbed me in the foot with a fork and I would not have known you did it.

The surgery (laminectomy and microdiscectomy) was successful.  Within four hours of waking up from the anesthesia, I was looking for my underpants because I was out of pain and ready to get dressed and go home!  It took another month or so to recover from the surgery itself and I'm still in physical therapy to regain the strength and flexibility that I lost, but all in all I'm kicking myself for waiting so long to have it done.

As most of you know, I've been struggling with my weight more on than off since my kids were born.  My oldest will be 21 next month and my little one will be 20 in November.  It's definitely not "baby weight" any longer.  As I've mentioned before, I had things mostly under control until my thyroid cancer diagnosis and subsequent total thyroidectomy in December of 2005.  Since then, it's been a constant battle with low energy levels, a rapid resting heart rate, and injury after injury (back, ankles, feet, knees, etc.)  It's been a constant repetition of the one step forward - two steps back regime.

Which brings me to a decision I've made and want to share with all of you...

I am going to have weight loss surgery.  I am planning to have a procedure done that's called a vertical sleeve gastrectomy.  In a nutshell, my surgeon will make one little hole in my bellybutton and remove a good chunk of my giant, pizza and fried chicken craving stomach through it.  That big piece of stomach will take with it a lot of my body's ghrelin (that hormone that makes you hungry!) production.

When everything is all said and done, it should become much less difficult to lose weight.  It won't be easy, mind you, but definitely less difficult.  As I lose weight, the likelihood of injuring and reinjuring myself exercising and the risk of having to have more back surgery or knee replacements or heaven knows what I'd break next decreases dramatically.

So, I have made a pretty big decision to help me on the path towards health and fitness.

I hope you all don't think it's a cheat or a cop-out or a bad decision in general.  I have thought all those things through for myself and still come to the conclusion that this is the right choice for me.  I would love your support for this new phase in my journey.  In lieu of your support, I appreciate your silence.

Love, N