Abso-freakin-crave This!

Lap band patients are supposed to focus on our protein intake. I’ve been slacking heavily lately so I’ve looked for inspiration all over the place. A classmate told me about something called the Dukan Diet. Essentially it’s 90% lean protein and 10% veggies once you get past the initial five days of only protein.

At first an all protein diet sounds dull and tasteless. But when I started looking around at recipes I found something that stood up and grabbed my attention immediately. Sauces! I adore sauces and since texture is such a factor for me and my lap band, sauces help good things stay down.

The first recipe I made was a Korean diced steak. A very tasty start but not the recipe I was the most excited about.

Enter Asian Sticky Chicken (originally found here but I adjusted it a bit for what I had on hand). I used chicken drummettes since it’s easier for me to find the right portion for my tiny tummy. The sauce is four ingredients… FOUR! I’ve never made wings before and this recipe makes me wonder why I haven’t tried them sooner.

Asian Sticky Chicken Wings

Ingredients
8-10 chicken drummettes
3 T balsamic vinegar
3 T low sodium soy sauce
2 T Brown Sugar Blend Splenda
2 t chili paste (I used Gochujang)

Method
•In a medium skillet lightly coated with cooking spray, brown both sides of the chicken (about 4 minutes per side).
•While that is browning, combine the rest of the ingredients in a saucepan, bring to a boil and simmer for 5 minutes, or until it thickens a bit.
•After your chicken has browned, add the sauce to the skillet and cook for another 5 minutes or until chicken is fully cooked. Be sure the sauce doesn’t get too thick or it might burn.

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Good Job

I don’t know what it is about the human race that makes us want to complain about everything all the time.  We’re quite the pessimistic bunch.  Think about it.  Someone asks how you’re doing and most of us automatically respond with something similar to “not bad.”  Ok so that might be true but why don’t we say we’re going well?  What is it that makes us complain all the time about things that might not really deserve a complaint?  Go out to dinner on a Friday night at 6:30 but get grumpy when you are greeted with a 45 minute wait for a table?  Does it suck? Yes but is it worth bitching about?  No.  Now if that had happened at 2pm at an IHOP ok maybe worthy of grumping about.

Is it so rare that we encounter good service that we forget to comment about it to others?  I was listening to the radio the other day and they were talking about a 20-something year old that found an envelope with over $1,000 in it on the ground at a hardware store.  This guy tracked down the owner and what did the gentleman say in response to the good samaritan?  “It better all be there.”  Yah.  He didn’t thank the kid at all.  Not even a “wow I’m a dumb ass for losing that.  Thanks for saving my butt.”

So today I went to the doctor to renew my medication prescription.  I only get one and depending on the time of year sometimes it is on backorder and hard to find.  This is not that time of year even if I did have to seek out three different pharmacies that didn’t have it (not back order issues just their order cycle and they ran out) before I broke free from Walgreens to a CVS where they had what I needed.  I have never really had great luck with CVS over the years so it really took me by surprise with what happened while I was there.  

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I did the usual song and dance to update my insurance information then was told that not only did they have the medication but that it would only take 5 minutes before it would be ready.  I’ve worked in retail pharmacy hell so I know 5 minutes means at least 10 especially when I looked up to see only one tech filling and a very busy cashier.  Yah 5 minutes my butt.  I was wrong.  It was exactly 5 minutes and my name was called to pick up my order.  Shocker number one.  Now to make things fun I asked if they could special order some headache powder that I like (lap band= pills usually too large= powder to the rescue) but is hard to find.  They looked and found that their supplier did not carry what I was asking for.  No harm asking I guess.  As I was paying one of the technicians suggested that I check across the parking lot at the Dollar General.  Hells Bells!  Guess what I found over there?

So after getting home I decided I’d write an email to the company telling them about how happy I was with the service I received today.  Except the more I thought about it the more I wanted to make sure that the two girls that helped me were actually told about how happy I was today.  That usually doesn’t get that far down the chain when you email a large corporation.  So I picked up the phone and called the store manager who I could tell at the beginning of our conversation was expecting a complaint.  Nope!  I complimented them and was even happier when he told me that what I had said made his day and he couldn’t wait to address the praise to the proper people.  

Moral of the story? Acknowledge that not everything is awful and praise those that have made your day easier or brighter in one way or another.  The words of praise you hold back can make a hard-working-usually-unappreicated person’s day.

 

Journey

Three years, four months, and four days ago I weighed 250 pounds and was going in to have a lap band placed. I looked like this a few weeks after it was done:

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Today I am 150 pounds! That’s right! I HAVE MET MY GOAL!!! I have lost 100 pounds. At 5′ 6″ that took me from a morbidly obese BMI of 40.3 to a normal weight BMI of 24.2.
Today I look like this and couldn’t be happier that I made the decision to have weight loss surgery:

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It hasn’t been an easy journey but it has been my own. I’ve learned a lot about my messed up head and body image. I will always feel like I’ve stolen some 6 year old kid’s jeans when I take mine out of the dryer but I’m ok with that. I will never again have to feel like I’m pushing the limits on water slides (physics 101) or about my legs going numb from the circulation being cut off by a lunchroom chair.

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Three Years Post-op!!!

Three Year Band-iversary!!!

Today is the three year anniversary of my lap band surgery (Band-iversary if you will).  I have kept a log of my journey in numbers.  Numbers don’t lie.

Three years ago I was 250 pounds, I wore a size 24 pant with XXL shirts, and had a BMI of 41.6 classifying me as a morbidly obese adult woman.  I couldn’t walk up a hill let alone stairs without feeling sweaty and like my heart was in overdrive.  I made sure that all of my tops were larger than necessary to help camouflage my body.  Where I used to have a nice hour-glass shape I was more of an apple with a small indention where a waist might have been.  It was not uncommon for me to secretly eat an entire fast food meal on the way home from work just in time to make dinner at home and eat again.  I am not proud of these things but I know that I am not the only person to have found myself in this situation.

Fast-forward to today.  I weigh 162 pounds and have a BMI of 26 (25 is considered “healthy”).  I can fit into a size 10 but am more comfortable in a 12.  I wear medium sized shirts.  I can not only walk up stairs and feel fine I have been caught running up stairs at work.  I am proud of how I look.  I am conscious of how I carry myself now and wouldn’t even think of trying to blend into the background.  I no longer sneak food.

Do not be fooled into thinking that a Lap Band is an easy answer.  It is far from it.  The dark side of these surgeries isn’t told unless you know where to look.  I’ll let you in on some secrets.

I have a hard time eating certain textures.  If meat is too firm my stomach cannot tolerate it and it is coughed up.  Any food that “puffs” up in my stomach is also coughed up.  So there’s bread and most rice.  I am not using the term “coughed up” as a delicate way of saying that I throw up or puke.  It is a similar action but not exactly correct.  The offending food does not make it into the part of my stomach that houses stomach acid.  So it comes up in about the same form as it went down.  Think of it as a lap-bander hair ball of sorts.  It has taken me a long time to not force the issue.  If a food is a no-no it’s a no-no and there’s no forcing it to work.

One of the lap band rules is no drinking while eating or for an hour after finishing a meal.  If this rule is ignored it also leads to a fun trip to the bathroom.  Except this is not to cough something up it’s to slime for a while.  Yah, sexy I know.  Picture this; you have food in the top stomach pouch (the one that is made by cinching the band around the stomach) waiting it’s turn to drop into the main part of the stomach and all of a sudden you flood this area with water.  It has no where to go but up.  You have essentially backed up the sink.

There are more things but these are the main issues I had the hardest time learning.

How do I live like this? Easily.  Like anything it just takes getting used to.  I love how I feel and would never change my decision to have Lap Band surgery.

I’ve lost the equivalent of a baby calf’s weight!

88% There

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I just checked my BMI and I have just 12 pounds until I am officially a “normal weight”! I have come so far it doesn’t seem real. My brain hasn’t caught up still.

I take my jeans out of the dryer and still think I’ve stolen some four year old’s pants. When I look at the numbers on the scale my eyes skip over the first digit and go straight to the last two. Telling someone that I weigh One Hundred and blah pounds sounds so foreign. Have you ever been asked your age and had to take a moment to think about it? Yah, same thing.

I’d love to give myself till the end of summer to get past “overweight” but I know better than that. So I’ll say by the end of the year.