Sunday, September 25, 2011

At Last!!

It's been quite some time since I have blogged, and quite a lot has happened!  I got to meet Ms. Amy W. while she was here in Charlotte for a work thing.  It was really nice to finally meet her in person, though I can honestly say that I felt like I knew her already, just from reading her blog.  She is just as great in person as she is in blog!  I also got to meet Heather.  We talked a lot about our bands... She let me feel her up - well.... her port baby, anyway.... We talked about my upcoming wedding, exercise, getting stuck, etc.  It was great!  

These past few weeks at work have been ridiculously stressful for me.  I never again want to go through a merger.  I have been in all kinds of training, totally new systems, etc etc.  I know that once it's done, it will most likely be for the better, but for now.... bleh.

On a brighter note... today is officially weigh in day, and I came in at 287.7!  I honestly did a double take when I saw it~haha.  I was like... wait... I GAINED?!!!  Then I realized that it was an 8 in the middle and not a 9.  Oh happy day!  I have been doing well with this adjustment.  One thing that I have realized, however, is that the days that I'm not eating ENOUGH food are actually worse on me than the days that I splurge and eat crap.  Not that I splurge all that often, but my point is that it's just as bad for your body to eat too few calories as when you eat way too many.  That's something that has been difficult for me to adjust to.

Wedding plans are coming along nicely.  Yesterday was my official 6 month mark in the countdown.  I went last weekend with my Maid of Honor to try on wedding dresses.  And... I cried~haha.  Not because I found "the dress", because I'm not sure that I did, but because I couldn't believe how nice my body looked in those dresses, and the fact that I was able to fit a 22, when last time I was in a bridal shop (for a prom dress) I had to buy a 32.  Yeah... 32... in HIGH SCHOOL.  Too much.  I will be heading to another store on October 8th (which also just happens to be my birthday!) to try on some other dresses along with my mom, stepmom, bridesmaids, and my stepsister.  I can't wait!  Though my mom and I usually disagree more often than not, I know that I could never pick out a dress without her there.  It must be a Southern thing.

And... last but not least... I would like to discuss loose skin.  While I am supremely happy about the weight I have lost, my loose skin has really been causing me some problems.  I know it's not the most pleasant thing in the world to talk about, but I just wanna put it out there for anyone else having issues.  I have a severe yeast infection on the skin right above my hoo-ha where my stomach skin hangs over and is rubbing there.  Severe enough that I went to urgent care yesterday because it was so painful.  They gave me diflucan, which is what they also prescribe for vaginal yeast, and told me to get some Monistat cream (also for vaginal yeast) and rub it over the infected area.  If haven't been using it long enough to tell a difference yet, but I will let you all know how it goes.  I have some pictures, but I will not be sharing them on here because of the location.  I will, however be sharing them with my surgeon when I go back for my next fill so that it can be documented.  Things like that can help you qualify for skin removal with your insurance company so that it isn't considered purely cosmetic.

So.. I will keep you ladies posted on the wedding plans and other issues... we'll see how it all works out! =)  I hope you all are enjoying the nice season change (Fall and Winter are my FAVORITE seasons... I hate the summer!!!). 

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Could it be? The sweet spot?!

So I realized this morning while doing my weekly weigh in that I haven't posted in nearly a month!  What's wrong with me?!!!  Absolutely nothing.. I've just been crazy busy and on the go.

Hmm... Where to start... Well since today is Sunday, and my official weigh in day... I will start with that.  This morning I was 291.2!! =)  That means I am down 61 pounds, and I am so happy.  I have gotten down to an 18 on the top, and 20/22 (depending on the style) on the bottom.  I haven't been this size since I was a sophomore in HIGH SCHOOL.  I had a small fill (.5cc) on Wednesday, and I can definitely feel the restriction now... but not in a bad way.  I'm afraid to jinx myself, but I think that I may have just hit the "sweet spot"!  For those of you who aren't as familiar with the band... the "sweet spot" is the point where your band is perfectly filled.  Your eating is restricted, but not too restricted... you are losing, but not too quickly.  In other words... the perfect adjustment.

A few weeks ago, Daniel and I went on a much needed vacation for a whole week!   We went to the beach... a place that I love to go simply because I can relax and get away from everything, but also a place that I honestly hate going outside in.  I know that sounds silly, but as a girl weighing 352 pounds... I didn't exactly feel comfortable frolicking on the beach with half naked 110 pound girls in bikinis.  I haven't owned a bathing suit since I was about.... oh 12 or so.  I have always just worn a tank top and shorts out on the beach.  However, this trip I decided to try something new.  Daniel and I went into one of those stores that you see about every 6 feet at Myrtle Beach (Eagles I think...), and I actually found quite a few swimsuits that were suitable for a plus size girl, but not something that looked like my grandmother designed it.  After just 2 tries, I found something that I was completely in love with.  I actually teared up when I saw myself in it.  Daniel was smiling from ear to ear when I came out of the dressing room.  It was one of the best moments I have had in my weight loss journey.  Up until that point, the only thing that topped it was the day that I looked down at the scale and the number started with a 2 instead of a 3.  That was a great day =)  A few days later, we went for a stroll on the boardwalk, and as I was watching the sunset over the water, Daniel took a picture of me from behind.  When he showed me the picture a few minutes later, I started crying right then and there on the boardwalk.  Not just a stray tear, but a genuine cry.  I had no idea how much my body has changed since I started this journey, and until I saw that picture, I felt like I had not been as successful as I would have liked.  It was an amazing feeling that I wish I could share with each and every one of you.  Unfortunately, our condo was broken into during our stay and my purse was stolen with camera inside.  So that memory is something that I will just have to make sure I hold on to myself =)

In other news... Daniel and I have been busy, busy, busy making wedding plans.  We have completely changed ALL of the plans that we thought we had decided on before.  I don't want to give away too may details, but I think having everything in one location will be much less stressful than trying to move around.  Also, I really like the ideas that have come to mind since deciding on the new location.  I am an extremely creative, DIY craft type person... and this place is going to feed my addiction!!  I'm very excited for everyone to see it, and I am hoping that everyone loves it just as much as Daniel and I love it.  I can't wait until I finally get to the point that I can go dress shopping =)  This morning, we were trying to decide on some of the ceremony music... I cried during almost every song~haha.  What can I say, I'm just an emotional person.  I got it honestly though.  Most of the ladies in my family will cry at the drop of a hat.  Not a bad thing, just sometimes inconvenient haha!

Speaking of wedding planning, I took a break from making an Excel spreadsheet of wedding guests, so I must get back to the task at hand.  I just wanted to make sure that  I didn't neglect you guys any longer!!!

I hope everyone had a wonderful weekend!

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Update Please?!

A few people have asked for an update on last weeks post.  So... here it is =)  

The more I thought about my visit to the podiatrist and EVERYTHING that went wrong with them, the more irritated I got.  So... I called and asked to speak to the office manager on Monday.  I told her the laundry list of things that had gone on from the first automated call to the last call to Daniel's phone.  She was extremely apologetic about everything and asked if she could call me back in a few minutes.  I wasn't really sure why.. but I agreed.  Well, when she called back, she said that she had both of the medications for you at no cost, and we will be happy to send them in the mail to you so that you don't have to make another trip over here.  So.. yay!  I doubt I will go back, just on principal, but it was nice to be heard.

Next on the agenda, my "visitor".  After just  days on the NuvaRing, she decided to pack her suitcase and go back wherever she came from.. haha =)  And now after about a week, my moods have stabilized (no more crazy lady) and my energy level has definitely increased.  I can honestly say that I am very happy with the choice to switch.

Since I haven't really talked about my band lately, I will give you all an update on that.  On Sunday, my official weigh in was 297 =)  No as much progress as I had been hoping for lately, but I have no one but myself to blame for that one.  I have been naughty... and drinking soda has been my number one crime!  Not even diet soda , but full on... 240 calories per can... glorious sugary Mountain Dew.  I noticed that my band no longer had restriction... I was able to eat anything and EVERYTHING I wanted.  Not good.  I have really been focusing on my water intake this week.  It's still not where it should be, but it's a lot better than it has been!  I am also guilty of drinking during and shortly after my meals.  Also not good.  My lapband doctor explained that this helps to wash your food down, and when you have something like the band in place to help hold your food in the top pouch for an extended period of time to help you stay fuller longer... this kind of defeats the purpose, huh?  So, you guys have my commitment to work on those two things.  My success obviously depends on it, considering the fact that I actually gained weight in the last 2 weeks.

On a brighter note:  Today starts my 10 day vacation!!  Daniel and I are heading to the beach on Sunday morning and staying through next Sunday =)  We haven't had any sort of vacation since last October, so we are both REALLY looking forward to it!  I am having a yard sale in the morning to clean out some junk from my house and hopefully get some gas money for said vacation~haha.  I am also considering heading down to the arts district (NoDa)  tonight to set up a cupcake table.  I had planned to go Friday night, but the weather channel said it was supposed to rain, so I didn't bake anything.  Do you think it rained?  HECK NO!  There was not a cloud in the sky and it was a nice 78 degrees outside.  Perfect cupcaking weather~haha.  So, maybe tonight I will have some luck, we'll see how it goes.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Hi... Ummmm... Nancy?

Ok, so.... I'm not sure if I have shared this with you all, but I work at a bank.  My particular branch is open on Saturdays, so we have to take turns working.  In return, we get an entire day off during the week.  Today just happened to be my day off, so I made a few doctors appointments for the day.  

First off, I had to go see the "lady doctor".  First off, I have been a raging bitch for the past month or so (just ask Daniel, I'm sure he will confirm this statement.. and then beg you not to tell me he did).  Secondly, I have always had problems with my "monthly visitor", and I was really hoping that my Lapband surgery might have cleared some of that up, as it does with many women.  Lots of times, obese women have extended periods or, on the flip side, completely missed periods.  My doctor explained that it's due to the extra stress that is on your body from the excess weight as well as the fluctuations in hormones that are slightly more common in overweight women.  I have had both problems.  Sometimes I will go 6 or 8 months with no visit at all.  Other times, like now, my visitor decides to pack extra suitcases and have an extended stay with me... to the tune of THREE MONTHS!  Yeah.. I'm over it.  One thing that band patients are told from the beginning is that their body can't absorb nutrients and vitamins the same way after surgery.  Well, this also applies to "extended time release medications".  Birth control pills fall into this category.  So today my doctor and I decided to switch things up a bit.  This may seem like TMI for some of you... but it's definitely something to think about:  I am going to start using the Nuva Ring instead of pills.  This way I am still getting protection, but because of where the Nuva Ring is placed, my band CAN'T interfere with it.  I will let you all know how it goes =)

On to the next appointment of the day.  This one doesn't really have any educational value for you all, but it was certainly educational for me.  I have had a few issues with my feet since I was in high school, and I finally decided that it was time to go see a podiatrist.  On Monday, an automated number called me to ask me to confirm my appointment, which I did.  Yesterday at 4:03 I got a call to my cell phone from a number I didn't recognize.  I saw the phone ringing, but I was a work, so I couldn't answer.  The call finally went away, which told me that I should have a voicemail in just a few seconds.  But, I didn't.  Then the phone rang again from the same number.  Not just one more time.  Not even two more times.  They called me FOUR TIMES total (back to back calls) before leaving a voicemail.  At this point I am panicking.  I'm thinking that something has happened to Daniel and the hospital is calling me, or something happened to his mother, all kinds of crazy thoughts went through my head.  Do you want to know what the voicemail said?  "Hi Nathalie, this is _____ from Dr. ____'s office just calling to confirm your appt for tomorrow.  Please return our call as soon as possible."  Really?  A) I have already confirmed through the automated system and  B) Was it really necessary to call me FOUR TIMES before deciding to leave the message?... I was slightly annoyed (blame it on my visitor!!!)  I went into the office today for my appointment, did all of the usual paperwork, and eventually went back into the exam room.  I spoke with the nurse, explained my issues, she got me all settled in the chair and said the doctor would be in shortly.  The doctor comes in, looks at my foot from at least a yard away and asks what he could do for me.  Never once looked at the notes that the nurse took several minutes writing for him, and couldn't possibly be able to see anything from where he was standing.  After explaining everything AGAIN, the doctor says to me "So, what would you like for me to do for you?"  Uhh.... I don't know, I didn't go to school to get a medical license.  That's why I came to YOU instead of seeing patients in my home.  So many rude and sarcastic answers came to my head.... but I eventually filtered them and came up with "Well, I was hoping that YOU might have some suggestions for ME."  He tells me he has something in mind and will be right back with some sample medication.  We finish up, and I go out to the counter to check out.  

With my insurance I don't have a co-pay, so I just needed to drop off my paperwork.  The nurse says "Hi Ms. Wilson, that will be $21.53."   Uhhhh... what now?  I say "What for?  I don't have a co-pay."  She responds, "Well, it looks like there is a charge for some medication you requested."  Once again... Uhhh.... what now?  I say "Oh, there must me a mix up.  Dr. ____ gave me some samples to try out and he said we would make a decision when I come back next week."  She says "Yes ma'am, and it looks like there is a charge of $19.99 for that medication, and an additional $32 for the other one."  WTF?  Since when do doctors charge you TWENTY DOLLARS for a sample??!  Isn't it called a sample for a reason?  I politely informed the nurse that I no longer want the samples, because I was not prepared to pay $50 for something that I was under the impression was free.  So... I left.  I was extremely irritated by the situation and the doctors "bedside" manner.  I had already made the decision that I would NOT be going back for my follow up next week.  I don't like shady people, especially someone who I am supposed to trust with my personal information and my health.  But, it was over, no one could force me to go back, so I was done with them... or so I thought.  When I got home several hours later (I needed some retail therapy after all that), Daniel handed me his phone to listen to a voicemail.  Here's how it started... "Good afternoon.... ummmm..... Nancy.....  You just left our office and Dr. ___ wanted us to give you a call because he was concerned that you opted not to keep the medication he gave you...... blah blah blah."  First off, if I had just left the office, you should know that my name isn't NANCY.  Secondly, Dr. ____ didn't GIVE me anything.  He was trying to charge me $50 for what he called samples.  Third, why is it that you called my "emergency contact" to leave this ridiculous message when you never once tried to call my phone.  I guarantee that you know the number, because you called it FOUR TIMES yesterday.  

Ok, so... that's the end of my rant for today.  Do you guys think I am over-reacting?  I have been known, more than a few times in my life, to do just that~ haha.  The whole thing just seemed ridiculously unprofessional to me.  I have considered returning their call tomorrow and give them a run down of all the reasons why I will NOT be returning next week.  Too much?

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Getting Over The Hump!!

Hello everyone!  Happy Hump Day =)

Since my last post, I FINALLY made it over "the hump".  You may ask "What hump are you talking about?!"  And to that I will say the 300 hump that's been haunting me!!  That's right, finally made it into the wonderful world of 200's, and I couldn't be happier!!  Well, maybe if I had skipped the 2's and went straight to the 100's... maybe then I would be a *little* happier... but beggers can't be choosers.  I haven't seen my weight starting with the number 2 since my freshman year in college.  My eyes actually teared up a little this morning when I looked down and saw that glorious number on my scale! 

So, last week I passed all of my too-big clothes on to a good friend of mine.  I had considered trying to sell them on Craigslist, as I am a shop-o-holic and still had lots of things with TAGS STILL ON THEM.  But, in the end, I decided it would be best to get on the good side of karma and see where it takes me.  Well, lo and behold, another of my good friends (who was banded about a year before me) messaged me and offered up her too-big clothes ranging from 20-24... which is EXACTLY what I am needing right now.  I love the little things that make the world go around =)

Daniel and I are counting down the days til our glorious VACATION!!!!  10, that's right, count them *10* wonderful, amazing, carefree, WORK free, house work free days at the beach, and I can't wait!!!  Just 16 days away =)  His family has been so kind as to let us use their condo, as we are trying to save up money for our wedding (which is only 8 short months away!), so that was also a nice little nudge and a wink from the karma fairy.  

Speaking of our wedding... last week we celebrated our FIVE YEAR anniversary =)  They were definitely not the easiest five years, we have had our hard times, ramen noodle dinners, sicknesses, job stress, money stress, family stress, and all of the other crazy things that come with a relationship.. but at the same time we have had wonderful weekends, fun vacations, great friends, and are very successful (in my opinion, anyway) for people our age.  We have always made it through everything stronger, and made it together.  I can't wait til March 24 when I can call myself his WIFE! =)  

Okay... enough of the sappiness... I hope you guys have a GREAT week =)  I will try to stay sane while I am on my vacay countdown.  I can't wait!

Monday, July 25, 2011

Well Hello There!

First off, I want to say "Hiiiiiii" to all of my new followers, and also give Amy W. a big thank you for sending some love my way =)

So, to catch all of the newbies up to speed, I will tell you a tiny bit about myself.  I have deemed Sundays to be my official weigh in day, so I always try to post my progress shortly thereafter.  I am 23 years old, and I live in Charlotte, North Carolina.  I am getting married in March 2012 to the most wonderful man in the world!  My starting weight was 352 lbs in November 2010 (I am 5'7), and I was banded on May 16th, 2011.  My ultimate goal number is 170, but I will honestly be happy with whatever my body decides.  Anything is better and much more healthy than where I began.

Now on to the fun stuff!  I weighed in yesterday at 301.8 =)  Finally over that 50 pound mark!!!  So... I treated myself with a little shopping (in my opinion, any excuse to go shopping is a good one, but losing 50 pounds is one of the best excuses I have ever heard).  I got some really cute shoes and a few new tops.  It's hard to restrain myself when I go shopping... especially now.  I am so excited about all of the things that fit me and actually look good, it's hard to remember that I *hopefully* won't be needing them very long... so I try to stick with the basics and things that I can mix and match.

I did get a fill last week, and let me just say... I love my new doctor!  He really takes the time to listen to what's going on with me, and he is very up front and honest.  My band will hold 11 CC's of fluid, and after last weeks fill I am at 6.5 CC's.  I definitely have some restriction back, which I am happy for.  For the last few weeks I was feeling like nothing had ever changed.  I could eat whatever, whenever without a second though.  It was hard the first few days after the fill, though.  After being unrestricted for a few weeks, I had to reteach myself to CHEW my food and SLOW DOWN.  Tonight jumpstarts my Zumba craze.  Daniel (my fiance) bought me Zumba for Wii at Christmas, and it has been sitting in a drawer collecting dust ever since.  Well, I decided that I am going to get down into the 200's, and the sooner I can get there, the better!  I want to be a sexy mamacita for my wedding!  

I am going to put a few pix of last weeks' shopping expedition... Let me know what you think!

New shirt!  (Same size 24 pants as last time, but I am starting to get boy crotch, so I think it may be time to move on to some 22's!)

New shoes!  All of my others make it sound like I am wearing flip flops bc they are TOO BIG =)  I bought 2 other pairs, but I thought these were the cutest =)

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

What is it Lassie? Timmy Fell in the Well?!

No.... I didn't fall in a well, I've just been so crazy busy at work lately that all I want to do when I come home is sleep... not blog~haha.

So, it's been  two whole weeks since I posted!  A LOT has happened since then, so I will pick out the important parts and try not to bore you to death =)  I am currently at 303 (as of this morning)... just one measly pound from the first major goal I set for myself... FIFTY POUNDS DOWN!!!  I am down to a 24 in pants (and could possibly get a 22) and in a 22/24 in tops (some I can even get an 18/20!).  I am so very proud of myself.  I haven't been in a size 22 since 2005, when I started college, so this has made me feel really good!  I mentioned last time that my surgeon was leaving and that they had an ungodly wait time for appointments.  I had an appointment scheduled for August 14th, then another for September something-or-other.  Well, yesterday I got a call saying that they had accidentally scheduled my August appointment during the surgeons vacation, and that they would need to reschedule.  My first thought was "HELL NO I'M NOT WAITING TIL SEPTEMBER TO SEE MY DOCTOR!!!"  Then, before I could verbalize my disappointment, the sweet little voice on the other end of the line says "We have an appointment on Wednesday at 1, how does that sound?"  Uhhh... it sounds FABULOUS!  So, I will be seeing the other surgeon in the practice tomorrow for a check-up and *hopefully* a fill.  I will let you guys know how that goes. 

Next on the agenda.... 80% of my clothes are now officially too big!  I have spent more mornings than not just standing in my closet, staring at all of the things that I can no longer wear without looking like I got dressed in a Hefty trash bag factory, and getting mad at myself for not going shopping yet.  So, since I am off for the entire day tomorrow (thanks to my having to work this Saturday =| ), I have decided to devote at least a portion of the day to buying a few new items.  Even my shoes are too big, and I have grown tired of feeling like I am wearing flip flops even when I'm wearing dressy pumps.  I do know how to sew, therefore I have put my sewing machine to good use and taken in a few dresses and skirts (since those are the easiest to do), so at least I was able to save those.  The majority of my other clothes I am considering taking to a consignment shop.  Lots of them have been worn less than a dozen times... and there are still tags on more pieces than I'd like to admit!  So, maybe I can get some cash to fund my shopping expedition tomorrow =)

Sewing and Cash... that brings me to my next topic.  I am sure that I have mentioned to you all before that I am getting married in March.  We got engaged in February this year, and decided to give ourselves plenty of time to get things together.  That being said, I am definitely the DIY type.  I love anything crafty!  So, I have decided to try to do/make a lot of the elements for our wedding and/or reception myself.  It will save us a ton of money, and it's something that I LOVE doing, anyway =)  I made my ring bearer pillow last weekend, and it looks pretty darn awesome, if I do say so myself.  I found a picture of one that was selling at Michaels Craft Store for $22... then I bought the supplies and made it myself to fit my color scheme.  I think I spent about... $5 over all?  I also have TONS of fabric left over, which I will be using in other projects, so really the cost was maybe $3.  No too shabby, eh?

So, with that, I will bid you all a good night and pleasant dreams.  I won't promise, but I will definitely TRY to post more often, rather than overwhelming you with 2 weeks packed into 2 paragraphs~haha.  

This is me during my last shopping extravaganza!  The new 22/24 me!

Ring bearer pillow for my wedding, hand crafted by yours truly. Don't fight ladies, I am taking orders now! =)