It all started when a fat girl got fatter thanks to chronic illness.

She got skared that she couldn't be the wife she had always wanted to be, and she got skared that she wasn't being the kind of mother that her children deserved.

She decided if she had to, she was going to be Skared Skinny.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Oreos, Whey, and a Whole Different Kind of Food Obsession

Week 2, Day 6

"Do you want a cookie?"  blurts out my husband thoughtlessly.
"Really?!" I exclaimed back at him while lying in bed during my first night home from the hospital.

And that wasn't the last time one of those conversations has occurred in the last few days.  There were numerous, "can I pick you up something" questions.  But the final straw came this weekend when my husband and stepson were comfortably lounging on the couch eating their Raising Cane's chicken fingers for dinner while I was debating what soup I was going to thin, blend, and strain in an attempt to eat. I may have been demon possessed.  It went something like this:

Me:  "I have an announcement to make.  There is a new rule in this house.  NO ONE shall bring Raising Cane's Chicken through the front door until I am able to once again eat solid food."
Chris: "But it's what Tanner wanted for dinner.
Me:  "Then you tell him NO. (and I'm pretty sure this came out as a deep growl,it was scary.)

All of that to say, a liquid diet gets to you pretty quickly.  Since I arrived  home from the hospital, I have had many woes with trying to tolerate whey isolate protein shakes, particularly the powder I have to mix up myself.  I get some of it down, but then the nausea inevitably takes over and I can't drink a drop more and it pretty much does me in for the rest of the day.  I've tried different brands, they all have the same reactions.  So I've moved on to buying the no sugar added Carnation Instant Breakfast.  I'm gonna give those a whirl tomorrow morning.

I digress.

This leaves me with the subject of food obsession.  I used to obsess about when my next meal was going to be and what I wanted.  Planning lunch during a work day was a major affair.  Something that was discussed usually beginning around 10 a.m.   However, while I still now obsess about when my next meal is going to be, it's because I have to get 6 meals in a day.  And now I obsess about what is it I'm going to have for that said meal that will meet or exceed what I need for the day.  I'm supposed to be taking in 60 grams of protein a day and that can be a tall order, especially if protein shakes aren't agreeing with me.  Greek yogurt smoothies have been one of my go to's, but they're so thick that I don't get much down.  My stomach just isn't that big. I have to be honest and say that I've had some soft scrambled egg whites a couple of days just to get some protein in.  It's against protocol, but I get worried and obsess about my protein intake.  

So, I either obsess about not getting enough protein, or I obsess that I broke the instructions, or I obsess that I'm not drinking enough water, or I obsess that I haven't gotten all 6 meals in.

But right now, I'm obsessed with Tuna salad.  It sounds so good right now.

Monday, May 6, 2013

Showering with Huey Lewis.....This Is It!!

From the moment I stepped in the shower this morning, this song has been in my head.  Well, maybe just the first line of the chorus.

This is it.

It's been months of preparing and praying that has led me to this day.  Changing my grocery shopping, changing my eating habits, changing my thought process.

This is it.

Physical therapy to get my exercise on track.  Long talks with my husband over a meal shared at a restaurant about how changes are going to impact the whole family.

This is it.

Lab work, cardiac clearance, physical exams, psychological exams, therapy sessions.......

This.  Is.  It.

At 10 a.m. this morning at Riverside Methodist Hospital in Columbus, OH, I will be having a vertical sleeve gastrectomy, otherwise known as a laparoscopic sleeve gastrectormy procedure.  The gastric sleeve procedure reduces the volume of the stomach to about the size of a small banana. Reducing the size of the stomach also reduces hunger, because the part of the stomach that produces the hormone, Ghrelin, was removed. This hormone is what makes a person feel hungry every few hours.  Hopefully by removing the area that produces this hormone will also reduce the effect all of my long term medications stimulate me to think I am hungry.  Whoot!!  Whoot!!

It has never been a process born out of vanity.  It's been a decision made solely based on quality of life.  No one can predict where my rheumatoid arthritis is going to direct quickly it will progress.  But what I do know, is that the excess weight I have put on (largely in part to steroids) is not slowing down the damage on my joints, but most likely making it worse.  Getting my weight down will reduce the stress on my joints, give me more energy and improve my quality of life and make me a better wife, mother and friend.  And hopefully make me feel more like the woman I used to be. 

"The Lord keeps you from all harm
    and watches over your life.
The Lord keeps watch over you as you come and go,
    both now and forever."  ~Psalm 121:7-8

So, I  haven't ate since midnight.....I've taken my fresh shower, and should be leaving in a couple of hours for the hospital.  My pantry is stocked with things to make protein shakes, smoothies, and new water bottles to sip, sip, sip!!!

This is it.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Label Schmabel


You're right.  This is my rant about reading food labels.

I have spent the past month trying to get adjusted to eating around 1 cup of food 6 times a day.  That's about all my new super slender, banana shaped stomach will be able to handle.  Now, the next change is as or more challenging than that -- Reading labels so that what I'm putting in my stomach will be of the most benefit to my body.

My nutritionist uses what she calls the 4-5 rule:  Fat < 5, Sugars<5, Fiber >5, and Protein >5.  If something falls into all of these criteria, then it is a safe food.  And I need to remember that this is just a "guide" and not the gospel of my new eating.  The idea is to minimize the amount of fat that is "staying" in my gut vs the amount of good food.  Fat just takes up space in what will be my new small stomach, while things high in fiber and protein actually absorb and get used better by my body.

As I looked through my refrigerator and pantry, I'm finding that this is a tall order for the things that are already in my house.  Even things that I thought would be find, like my Yoplait Light....doesn't meet the fiber and sugar guidelines, which was disappointing.

Grocery shopping this week is going to be a tall order.  Better remember to take my glasses.

Sunday, December 9, 2012

And so it begins.....

It would be an extreme understatement for me to say that I have struggled with my weight my entire life.  It's a combination of genetics and bad relationships with food.  And the worse I felt about myself, the more likely I am to turn to food for comfort.  It's a vicious cycle.

Then I was diagnosed with an incurable, debilitating disease that caused extreme pain and one of the only reliefs I get is through steroids and medication.  I'm talking about Rheumatoid Arthritis.  I spent 6 months on prednisone while they "ruled out" all the other things I could possibly have.  I think I gained about 50 lbs in that 6 months alone.  I would feel better and would be able to lose some weight.....and then I would fall on the ice in the winter or fall down my steps and have an extreme flare up of my disease and have to be put on the steroid again.  So I continued on the vicious cycle until I was again diagnosed with an incurable, debilitating disease....Fibromyalgia.  Now the little activity I was managing with the RA was taken away because when my joints aren't hurting, everything else is.  Right down to a lot of my clothes hurting my skin when I put them on.

Depression, lack of physical activity, and increased medications have all contributed to an increase in my weight that I never thought I would allow.  It has left me feeling very hopeless and helpless about the way I look and my overall health.  Not to mention the increased weight is incredibly hard on my already fragile joints.

Desperate times call for desperate measures.

So here's where I draw the line.

I have enrolled in the Bariatric program at Riverside Methodist Hospital called Fresh Start Bariatrics.  I have had a friend go through the program successfully and it has made a huge impact to have her in my corner rooting me own.  I will be undergoing a gastric sleeve procedure within the next 4-6 months. I had my first dietary/nutritionist appointment on Friday and it is going to be a HUGE lifestyle change.  But I'm ready.

There you have it.....a big secret that I've been keeping as I've mentally prepared for this.  I start changing my eating patterns tomorrow and logging the change.  I hope you'll follow me and support me along the way.

Sometimes it takes being skared about your future to get skinny.  And that's where I am.