PAIN!

I’ve been in quite a bit of pain for the past week. I’ve checked around and it seems to be a common occurrence after WLS to have lower back pain due to the shift in posture as you lose the weight. I am experiencing severe nerve pain from my lumbar spine and down into both of my legs and feet. Please note, however, that I have a pre-existing spinal condition that is exacerbated by any inflammation in the spine. This level of pain is not typical. 

I contacted my spinal specialist who arranged an appointment with the neurosurgeon who does nerve root blocks… I pray it helps this time because it didn’t last time. I wish to avoid spinal surgery for as long as possible!

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My Snoring Guardian

I hear him Snore and I recall how irritating it was to me when I spent every night at home sleeping beside him. Now I work nights and I miss him and all his noisy snoring. It makes me feel safe and I sleep better with him beside me.

Emotional Eating and WLS

Back in June, 2016, my husband and I attended a WLS seminar. The goal of the seminar was to teach us about the various options so that I could, if I so chose, make an informed decision as to which surgery I wanted. The speaker was well spoken and very knowledgeable. He carried himself with confidence. Before leaving the seminar, I was given a paper to fill out to request an appointment with the surgeon of my choice. I chose the speaker because of his level of confidence. 

My journey began in August 2016 with my first appointment with Dr. Kuwada. He was very matter-of-fact about expectations and sent me on my way with many more appointments and hurdles to pass. I was excited and so very ready to get the ball rolling!

One of my appointments was with their in house psychologist, an evaluation. During the Q&A session, I mentioned to her that I have always been an emotional eater. She asked if I would like to meet with a psychologist who specializes in WLS patients. She thought they may be able to help me learn new coping strategies. I, of course, agreed because I’m in it to win it! Who wants to go through surgery just to fail in the end because they can’t reign in their emotions? 

I met with my psychologist every Tuesday for 3 months. She had me write down everything I ate and my emotions at the time. Eventually, I was able to start questioning myself. “Am I really hungry or just bored, upset, sad, angry, etc… Do I really want to eat or do I want to VENT?!” I learned to drink a glass of water and wait. If it’s true hunger, the hunger pains will jot fade. If it was merely head hunger triggered by some emotion, it would fade after about 15-20min. After those 3 months, I felt more ready than I ever had. I GOT THIS!!! I am so thankful for the opportunity to learn more about myself and to grow spiritually before having surgery because now, after having surgery, I feel well prepared for my new future! My surgery was 2/20/2017 and I am doing wonderfully well!

Journey To A Beginning

Stop right now and ask yourself, “Do I know what I want to do for the rest of my life?” You may have it all figured out, you may be still lining your ducks up, you may still be finding yourself. All of those options are perfectly NORMAL!

I remember, when I was like five years old, my Mom asked me, “Felicia, what do you wanna be when you grow up?” I thought about it for a moment and replied, “I’m gonna be a nurse!” with all the enthusiasm of youth. My Mom responded, “You are still so young and have your whole life ahead of you. You can be anything you want to be.” She was right and I thought of so many other things I wanted to try. The point of this story, however, is to explain how I actually DID wind up becoming a nurse.

It went like this:

When I was 11yrs old, I almost died from sepsis. My appendix had ruptured on a Thursday night. I woke up in agony on Friday morning so Mom kept me out of school and made me an apt with my regular doctors partner because he was out of town. She took me in, he ran some bloodwork, checked me out, diagnosed me with gastroenteritis and sent me home with some meds.

Over the next two days I progressively got worse and worse. On Sunday, my Mom called my regular doctor who was back in town and agreed to see us. (Yes, on a Sunday because that’s how those southern docs roll!) By this point, I was not able to stand up straight. It was as if a hard band was being pulled between my knees and shoulders, drawing me down and causing so much pain I had trouble breathing. By this point, I couldn’t lift my own legs into bed. My Mom was getting me in and out of bed.

When we got to the doctors office, he rushed us into the back and helped me up onto the exam table. He than asked me to lay back onto the table. I tried, I really did, but I hadn’t been able to lay flat on my back for two days. He turned to look at my Mom and said, “Ok, here’s the plan. I need you to take her straight to the ER. I don’t mean go home and get her gown and toothbrush. Go straight there. I will meet you there. Her appendix has ruptured and there is infection spreading.”

When I was admitted and taken to a room, they gave me a shot for pain and I can’t express the relief I felt. After some time, a nurse came to give me another shot and take me for surgery. On the way out the door, she said, “Honey, you should be dead by now!” I turned and looked at my Mom and watched these big, huge tears roll down her face. I thought to myself, I’m going to be a nurse! But, I’m not going to be THAT nurse! The nurse making my Mom cry!

And that’s who I am! I am a nurse who gives hope, not sorrow, smiles, not tears. My patients love me and I love them more because that’s what it’s supposed to be about. I meet so many who go into nursing for the paycheck and that hurts my heart.

A patient of mine was discharged but before she left, I left her a note beside her morning coffee that I made for her, never fail, every morning… It said, “If I never met you, I wouldn’t know you. If I didn’t know you, I wouldn’t love you and if I didn’t love you, I wouldn’t miss you. But I did, I do and I will!” My goal was not to bring her to tears (which happened) but to let her know she is loved and would be missed! She grabbed my hand and said, “If not for you, I don’t know what I would have done while here! You’ve made my stay beautiful and I love you and will miss you!”

How To Quit Sugar

Via @weightlossroutines

PHASE 1: Eliminate Sugary Beverages
If you’re anything like the average gal, you slurp down nearly 40 pounds (70,000 calories!) of liquid sugar per year. Sipping sweet, fiberless beverages (think soft drinks, sweetened waters, coffee drinks) spikes your insulin.

PHASE 2: Quit Sugary Junk Foods, Cakes, Cookies, Candy Bars
Give ’em the heave-ho. Also press pause on secretly sugary fare such as granola bars. When you can, opt for fresh food over processed snacks. Nearly 80% of the latter contains loads of added sugar. First, ID the foods you have the hardest time avoiding (um, cupcakes?) and quit those first, one at a time. Over the next two weeks, edit out all sugary junk. Substitute in fruit when your cravings start up.

PHASE 3: Reduce Simple Carbs
By this point you’ve halved your sugar dependence and shed some serious pounds. Next, tackle simple carbs, which act just like straight sugar in your body. Make a list of the refined foods you typically eat (e.g., crackers, white breads)and, again, reduce them one by one over the next two weeks. Try starting with pastas: Instead of making two cups of spaghetti, make one cup and top it with a protein-packed lean meat. The next time around, replace that remaining cup with a veggie such as spaghetti squash.

PHASE 4: Sleuth for Hidden Sugars
This one’s the trickiest and could take a full two weeks to master. Because hidden sugars are, well, hidden, you could still be ingesting lots of sweet stuff. Keep a critical eye on ingredient labels on condiments, sauces, and salad dressings—all sneaky sugar sources. Also, be leery of “sugar-free” offerings; many are packed with simple carbs instead.

PHASE 5: Keep It Up (Realistically!)
It’s all right to indulge every now and then, but pay close attention to your cravings. A slice of cake might be okay for one woman, but it could push another woman over the addictive edge. If a sweet snack leaves you yearning for more or, worse, bingeing, you’ll know you’re particularly vulnerable to sugar’s powerful lure. Credit: Gretchen Voss,Women’s Health.

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BEST FOODS FOR ABS

1. Vegetable Juices – High in nutrients and low in kilojoules, hearty organic veggie juices are an ideal meal replacement for strength and vitality. Make green-leafy veggie juices a daily routine if you want your six-pack abs sooner.

2. Mushrooms – Mushrooms are a six-packers magical wonder food; high in vitamins and low in kilojoules; they are one of the only foods that stay expanded in your stomach and give you that ‘full’ feeling. (I love fresh mushrooms but canned mushrooms have NO BENEFIT and are nasty!)

3. Tuna in spring water – High protein, low fat; real six-pack food. (I could eat it straight from the can, YUM, or fresh tuna is even better!)

4. Vegetables – Hellooooo vegetables!!! Eat many vegetables, very often. The fresher they are, the better!

5. Eggs – The amino acids in eggs are converted into muscle more efficiently than any other protein fuelled food or drink. Recent research shows that eating eggs has very little, if any, effect on blood cholesterol levels.

6. Lean Chicken – High in muscle-building protein, lean chicken breast is a best friend in the kitchen.

Six-pack stoppers
Alcohol, white bread, white rice, white pasta, cheese, chocolate, ice-cream, sweets, chips, fries, crisps, soda/soft drinks, butter, margarine, commercial fruit juice, processed & packaged foods.

Whenever possible, choose wheat over white. Wheat pasta, whole wheat bread, brown rice, etc… Complex carbs are much better than simple carbs and your body NEEDS those fibers!!!

8 BEST BEDTIME SNACKS FOR WEIGHTLOSS

🔴String Cheese – 80 calories – packs the amino acid tryptophan, which may help make you drowsy
🔴A Bowl of Cereal – whole-grain, complex carb kind (oatmeal, corn or bran flakes) easy to digest, gives you 200 calories or less per bowl
🔴Nonfat Greek Yogurt
🔴Two Slices of White-Meat Turkey loaded with sleep-inducing tryptophan
🔴An Apple with a Spoonful of Peanut Butter
🔴Pudding Cup – 90 calories.
🔴Baby Carrots – four fat-free calories per carrot.
🔴A Banana – loaded with satiating fiber and relaxing tryptophan (for only about 100 calories each)