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Wednesday, March 23, 2011

First Class

I had my first prep class on March 7th. I intended to post about it then, and join the freight train of weight loss surgery (WLS) bloggers already out here on the interwebz, but you know how it goes. Life interferes; 9,000 strangers you don't even know, but are somehow more dear to your heart than most people you DO know, die; depression hits; PMS comes and goes; Prozac is added to the daily multivitamin regimen in a different sort of attempt to balance one's life - never mind the vitamin D, give me that vitamin P!

Et cetera.

Before my class on the 7th, I had to meet with the doctor I'd met for the initial consultation several weeks earlier. I weighed in (wearing heavy work boots and not removing my coat due to the nurse's rush-rush-rush demeanor) and managed to weigh nine pounds more than I had at my initial consultation. I'm mentally subtracting five pounds from that for various factors - clothes, having just eaten lunch and drunk about a liter of water - and accepting the fact that maybe I weighed four pounds more than I had previously.

But you know what? March 7th was five days after my 30th birthday. Yes, I ate cake. Probably more than I should have. And I had a few drinks here and there. And I ate a burrito the size of my head at Mad Mex and had a damn margarita. You only turn 30 once, right?

My handsome Russian doctor scolded me. "Was it your birthday all week?" Well, yeah, it kind of was. I had different days with different groups of people and different places to go and things to do... it's not like turning 10 and having all of your classmates come to your house and having a once-and-done event. Age complicates things.

"Obviously, you are still eating too much. And not exercising enough. If you can't do this, this won't work."

If I could do this, I wouldn't be contemplating the surgical option, thankyouverymuch.

The visit with the doctor left me dejected, upset, disappointed in myself and angry at the world. Angry at well-meaning coworkers who do nothing but harm in bringing donuts/candy/cookies/snack mixes to the office. Angry at parents who don't seem to get the real consequences of this surgery, should I finally opt to have it, thus continue to load the cupboards and pantry with processed empty calorie crap. Angry at myself for lacking the willpower and motivation to avoid the temptations and drag my ass to work out after particularly busy bank days.

Still, there was a class to attend about "nutrition," so off I went, confident that I already knew everything the class was going to offer.

So far as actual nutritional information goes - I did. So far as post-surgical nutrition goes - I did not. And can I mention that the teacher of the class is the dietitian I have so thoroughly raked across the coals in this blog many times? The one I went to see in high school who was absolutely USELESS and who I abhor to this day? Yeah, let's not forget that.

Post-surgical nutrition goes a little something like this:

- The first two weeks are a strictly liquid diet.
- From then, all solid foods must be chewed to applesauce consistency.
- It will take approximately 10-minutes to consume one ounce of food. Use a timer.
- 5 grams of fat per meal.
- 60 ounces of fluid per day. (I usually drink twice that, now.)
- Liquids may not be consumed during meals. Only 30-minutes before eating or 30-minutes after.
- No caffeine (2-weeks before surgery and 2-months after).
- No straws, carbonated, or sugary drinks.

Then there are the generally accepted post-surgical "side effects" of dumping syndrome, anemia (I'm already borderline for this, surgery exacerbates the problem of iron absorption into the bloodstream), B12 deficiency, and possible protein deficiency leading to hair loss and all sorts of other fun problems.

This surgery invites sickness and ill health as companions to being thin. Of course, there are people who sail through without experiencing these issues. But then again, there are people who don't.

Which am I?

My next class is on April 6th. It's a "behavioral" class. Stay tuned.


Anonymous said...

Hope you find your class tomorrow to be worthwhile.

Mary Lyter said...

This surgery sounds like bullshit dude. I mean, I want the happy effects for you, but jeebus. No drinking while eating? Um, no.