Friday, July 27, 2012

10 Days Post-Op

WELL! I'm 10 days out, and I'm 10 pounds down :)

I'm pretty happy so far!
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Sunday, July 22, 2012

Measure THIS...

I am currently 5 days post op.

I finally took all my body measurements, so in CASE the scale stops moving, I can still track my inches lost :)

left bicep 18"
left forearm 12.5"
left wrist 8"
left thigh 32"
left calf 19"
left ankle 10.5"
neck 14.5"
right bicep 18.5"
right forearm 7.25"
right thigh 33"
right calf 20"
right ankle 11"
bust 44"
waist 47"
hips 54"
OH! and the swelling is going WAY down. Right now I'm only suffering from bruise-related itching. The pain is pretty minimal, thankfully! Unreal...

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Friday, July 20, 2012

Healing at Home

It's 3:26 and I'm awake. Fell asleep very early, and now I'm up watching reruns of Medium in a quiet house.

My sleeve surgery on Tuesday 7/17 went FANTASTICALLY. My surgeon was very pleased with my progress, and I was discharged at 10:30 am yesterday.

I'm able to drink Isopure, chicken broth, tea, sugar free jello and sugar free Popsicles. I'm walking easily and making sure I don't overdo it.

I took a picture of my battle wounds, my belly is VERY swollen. But all in all, feeling good!

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Monday, July 16, 2012

I will change my life tomorrow

Tomorrow is "Sleeve Day"...

I'm nervous, excited, scared, embarrassed, thrilled, anxious, terrified, over-the-moon, mortified, and jittery all at once.

I can't wait to be POST-OP! Wish me luck!!!

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Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Less than a week pre-op!

In 6 days, I will be patiently (yeah right!) waiting at Griffin Hospital's same day surgery wing, ready to go under the knife, errr, under the laparoscopes? lol. I dunno what you'd call it, but I"ll be under something!

Last night (one week pre-op), I had my husband take the [obligatory] before shots of me. Jeez, I look worse than I thought I did. I took a second [riDICulous] set in the bathroom at my office. I don't have a full length mirror at home, so I rarely even know what I look like until I get to work. Yup, that's my life LOL.

Here they are! My embarrassing, yet encouraging, before shots:

(*my dog makes everything in photos look bigger)

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Friday, July 6, 2012

Friday fanny

I will be SO happy when I no longer have back fat :)
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Thursday, July 5, 2012

Day 3... cakewalk!

and NO, I'm not walking and eating cake.... mmmmmm. caaaaaaaaaaake. d'oh!

I digress lol.

I was on my liquid diet yesterday (4th of July) while EVERYONE I knew was out BBQing... So I did what I needed to do, I went to my parents house (they're on vacation) and sat in an empty house, sipping water, eating soup, and sucking on popsicles... I knew that if i went to a party with my husband that we were invited to, I'd be pouting watching everyone drinking beer and eating burgers, or WORSE, that I'd cheat...

I'm on day 3 today, and so far it's been pretty ok!  Here's what I've been doing:

8am - breakfast: protein shake, small coffee with splenda, 20oz of water with a generic ice tea 'crystal light'
keep sipping on water
11am - snack: sugar free jello (or two!? depending on how famished I am)
keep sipping on water
1pm - lunch: creamy tomato or creamy chicken (no chunks), 12oz of water with a generic lemonade 'crystal light'
keep sipping on water
3pm - snack: sugar free jello, can of low sodium v8
keep sipping on water
7pm - dinner: creamy soup, chicken broth, or bouillon cubes in boiled water, 20oz of water with a generic ice tea 'crystal light'
8pm - dessert: sugar free popsicle

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Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Day 1 of my liquid diet, ack!

I know I can do this, I've been drinking two shakes a day for months now... but I ALWAYS looked forward to dinner. I'm just the slightest bit worried that I'll get home tonight and be starving. Although, who knows! I might just be perfectly fine. Doubtful though lol... I've heard/read that day 1 of the liquid diet is the hardest. I'll just drink as much as possible, and try to go to bed early :-D

"When you feel like quitting, think about why you started."

"Take pride in how far you have come and have faith in how far you can go."

"No matter how slow you go, you're still lapping everybody on the couch."


Here is a picture of me (5 days ago) at my company's summer picnic. I'm expecting to look WAY better next year ;-)

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Saturday, June 30, 2012

One last "Last!"

One of my favorite things in the world are strawberry frosted donut with sprinkles from Dunkin Donuts. While perusing Stop & Shop, my husband and I stopped to get coffee and there they were. Smiling at my from their wire racks. So I ordered my last strawberry frosted donut ever, and it was amazing!!

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Thursday, June 28, 2012


Well, ladies and jerks... it's finally a reality! Insurance approved me last Friday, and my surgery is scheduled for Tuesday July 17th. My pre-op appt w/ my surgeon is tomorrow, and I start my liquid diet July 3, just in time to NOT eat on the 4th of July! LOL. It will be a great test of willpower :)

T minus three weeks!! I'll wonder if I'll feel up to blogging from my hospital bed ;-)

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Monday, June 18, 2012

Getting in the "Last"s...

Wow. I'm nearing the end of a phase of my life -- one that I'll be thrilled to be done with, but will really miss -- my "life as a foodie" phase. I LOVE food. I know I'm going to MISS food. I'm practically MOURNING FOOD already. It's quite sad, almost a breakup.

Mentally, I'm 100% prepared for this surgery. Giving up superficial things like wanting a second serving of dinner, in order to gain back my life. I won't wake up every day in pain from a deteriorating L5-disc in my back. I wont walk slowly at the back of a group, because my knee swells up so badly. My orthopedic surgeon assured me my torn meniscus would heal itself, no need for surgery. That was THREE years ago. I'm tired of being in pain.

I noticed that I've built a mental checklist in my headache, and I announce out loud at every completion... On Mother's Day it was, "LAST buffet ever!" On May 23rd it was, "LAST binge-drinking birthday ever!" I've already made dates with gf's for my "LAST winery tour" and "LAST ice cream sundae"... it's pretty bittersweet (no pun intended).  And although I'm 100% (maybe 99%) ready for VSG, I have to remind myself, that I don't have to complete my list of "last"s...

Instead of having that "last chocolate cake", "last ice cream sundae", "last pizza", or "last chicken Tikka Masala"... I can come up with a WLS-friendly version of my favorites, that aren't heavy in carbs, calories, or sugar. Rather than store bought, I can save some money (and sanity?) by making my own high-protein version of things I don't want to break up with. I wont have to mourn strawberry milkshakes, because I've ALREADY found the perfect substitution, with 27 grams of protein :) I just have to be creative!

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Monday, June 11, 2012

Heh Monday?

This is an update to the last blog post I shared... I was wearing the same shirt (not on purpose), different jeans, so when I went to the ladies room, I thought I would take another pic. Just in case I looked ANY smaller...

and it's funny cause I think I DO look smaller! not by a shocking amount, but at least by something.

My surgeon's office is submitting me to insurance this Wednesday (two days)... They were supposed to submit me last Monday the 4th, but when I called my insurance on Thursday to poke them, they said they had no info for me. So I called the office, and they told me they needed ANOTHER letter from my PCP, who refused to write it until they saw me. Luckily, I had already scheduled my 6 month check up for this Wednesday, so I'm praying they can fax the letter to my surgeon's office that day, my appt is at 11:30 so that should give them PLENTY of time :D

Please wish me luck! :-D
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Friday, May 11, 2012

Meh Friday

I'm making pretty good pre-op progress... but today I'm wearing an outfit I thought was slimming, but the photo and the mirror are SOOO different.

I can't wait until I look SMALLER in photos then I seem in the mirror...

MEH! lol

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Thursday, May 10, 2012


Griffin Bariatrics As I mentioned in my last post, I have just ONE more month left of my 6 month supervised pre-op diet, and my insurance requires that I attend support groups as part of the submission process. So last night I went to Griffin Hospital in Derby, CT for my first meeting. I was so nervous, I didn't know where the hospital was, where the room was, who and how many people would be there, what it would be like, etc. I was scared as hell! So i showed up 30 minutes early and listened to NPR in my car for 15 minutes to settle my nerves. I walked in and asked the woman at the front desk where to go.

"Oh, you want cafeteria room 2..."

"Ok, where's the cafeteria?"

Woman rolls eyes... "It's down the hall, take a right, then take a left, and go into the cafe, it's on the left side. It's ALWAYS there."


Her attitude distracted me, and I quickly found myself standing in the middle of a nearly empty hospital cafeteria, with carpeted floors, and a single table of people eating and laughing. I saw an open door on the far left side of the room, and a tall, slender man in aqua shorts walked into it. I remembered seeing him in my doctor's office earlier that month, only that time he was wearing salmon colored shorts. I figured that must be the place!

I entered the room and noticed there were 3 long tables pushed together, forming what I imagined would promote a "round-table" type discussion. I sincerely hoped these people were nice. And they were! The woman moderating the group, the Griffin Hosp chaplain, had been a Lap Band patient of Dr. Ehrlich's 7 years earlier. She was great at keeping our attention, and the women (and 2 men) of the group talked and laughed, as if we had just sit down to a family dinner. Being the only pre-op patient, they offered me advice, shared their personal hurdles, and applauded my (albeit minimal) success since January.

I was thrilled to hear that the man in blue shorts and I both have the same insurance, and his approval came just 3 days after submitting his information. I have been dreading the seemingly arbitrary approval process and waiting times. On TTF, I've found that patients with the same insurance company as me have received their approval in anywhere from 4 days to 8 weeks. So I was quite relieved to find out that this man had heard so promptly. I hope I am that lucky!

Anyway, I was very happy with the group. I will definitely be going back there. I've found it's SO important to have some type of support system. One woman at the group said only her husband knew she'd had the surgery, she hadn't even told her parents, and she was 8 weeks post-op. I couldn't even START to imagine going through this process without my parents' support. It's been so important to me. But then again, my parents are awesome. And support me through all my decisions, mistakes, and challenges. I'm sure not everyone is so lucky. So if YOU are not as fortunate as I am, please find an external support system. Even if you're not telling friends, family, or co-workers, having a support system almost guarantees your success. Reach out to your surgeon's office, or local hospital for a schedule of free support groups in your area, or simply Google it! :D

Best of luck to us all...
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Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Holy $#!T! The homestretch!

Gosh, it seems nearly impossible that my pre-op journey is almost over. I remember thinking -- at my surgical consult -- that six months would take FORRRRRRREVVVVVVEEEEER!!!!! I was almost angry with CIGNA for requiring such a ridiculously long supervised diet. Boy has that changed. I'm practically grateful for that time now. I honestly don't know if I would be anywhere near as prepared as I am, if I had been able to have the surgery within, say, 3 months...

I am thankful for my parents and my (sexy!) husband for supporting my decision to make this radical change. For never once second-guessing me, and always hugging me when I need it. For always cheering me on, even if I've only lost one pound in a month.

I am thankful for finding the ThinnerTimesForum. A wonderful community of men and women who have had all types of WLS, who open up their hearts and souls to painstakingly account for every ounce of pain, every NSV (non-scale victory), every hurdle, every failed marriage, every heartbreak, and every goal met. It's truly inspiring, and everyone there is a winner (as well as a "loser!")

I am thankful for Holly -- my strong, IRL friend of 7 years -- who had the sleeve surgery last year, and has patiently answered all of my ridiculous, paranoid, bizarre, and random questions with grace. Answering my panicked text messages about gas, poop, vitamins, extra skin, and skinny sex without the slightest hint of annoyance. Thank you so much, Holl, I love you!

I am so thankful for the few friends I've chosen to tell about this, because I know they wont judge me, or tell me I'm bound to fail. Realistically, I know that after the surgery, some friendships will not last. I've read about them on the forums, and some people just can't handle such life changes. So... to Syd (who helped me make the yummy fruit kabobs above), Ally, Tracy, Christine, Reed, Natasha, Soda Pop and Blondie: thanks for being my cheering section. For not pressuring me one way or another. For just "being there" through thick (heh!) and thin. Love you fools! :-D

I have ONE more nutritionist appointment before I can submit to insurance. I have gone to see the bariatric psychologist, had my upper GI sonogram, done the blood panels, gotten a letter of necessity from my PCP, and completed a sleep apnea study (I should have taken a picture of the helmet I had to sleep in!). This month, I will be attending two support groups and have an endoscopy, so by the time my last NUT appointment rolls around, I will have EVERYTHING complete. I'm pretty proud of myself for getting it all done. I LIKE to think I'm organized, but I'm a Gemini with self-diagnosed ADHD, so shit doesn't always keep my attention for very long. So this is a pretty big feat for me. I like being able to say I'm proud of myself. Especially when I know deep down I haven't half-assed it.

Thanks for reading! You haven't heard the last from me :-D

(PS -- I lost SIX pounds this month :-) That brings the total to 22 pounds lost!)
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Sunday, March 4, 2012

"I'm really proud of you"...

Last night, my best friend and his wife were visiting, and I told them about my weight loss surgery plans. I'm pretty cautious about telling people, I'm afraid that people wont understand and start giving me unwelcome advice or opinions that will leave me upset, or -- god forbid -- I find a way to sabotage myself, and chicken out on the procedure... It's very unlikely, but I would feel (almost) like a failure if I were to tell dozens of people my plans, and then no follow through.

So, last night I manned up and told my friends. They were so happy for me. They listened attentively, and I found myself quite excited as I spelled out the procedure, and listed off all the appointments I've had already, and what still needs to be done before insurance approves surgery. After what felt like I'd verbally vomited on them for hours, I came up for air and waited nervously for their feedback. My BFF is not a man who is ever at a loss for words, it's sometimes hard to get him to shut up lol... He stammered for a few seconds, and then simply said "I'm really proud of you".

I'm really lucky to have such a great support system, supportive family and friends :-)

Then we went out with another couple for sushi. We had a BOATLOAD of fun ;-)

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Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Emotional Eating - killing the urge!

Last night, after a debate with my husband over money, I retreated to my best friend in the whole house - food. Last night it was a Tofutti Cutie ice cream sandwich bar, it's not as bad as other sweets are, but that's not my concern at the moment.

I've spent too many years of my life literally FEEDING my depression. It's not a secret that I severely hate confrontation, and often during a debate or argument, I prefer to give in (whether I'm right or wrong) than to reach an agreement or end. I get to a point emotionally where I physically can't stand the strain, and I end up blowing up, surrendering or shutting down.

Luckily, last night wasn't an issue that led to fighting, crying, or binging. I was simply sad and depressed, and I promptly went to the freezer to make myself feel better.

I worry that I may not be able to break this comforting habit after my surgery. I have been doing great over the past month in terms of choosing much more wisely than ever before, I've lost a few pounds, and I'm definitely proud of myself. But this is way more than I can physically control. I have had dozens of therapy sessions to address my emotional state of mind. And while physically I'm strong enough to keep making positive, healthy choices, I'm fearful that my emotions will beat me in the end.

Does anyone else feel like this? They must... right? Maybe once that crap is out of my house, I wont have the option to "emotion eat"... I dunno...

It's probably worth talking to my bariatric LCSW about it. Le sigh...
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Saturday, February 18, 2012

Inspire Me!


Soooo, I've started looking at other weight loss surgery blogs for inspiration. I am actually pleasantly surprised by the amount of quality personal journeys I've been able to find! I hope that one day I'll be an inspiration to someone just starting out also!

Here are some of my favorites:

And of course my GREATEST VSG inspiration in the world Holly!
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Thursday, February 16, 2012

Under construction

I'm working in my new blog layout. Please bear with me :-)
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When I'm Thin ...

I work for a wine import / export company, and there are literally hundreds of bottles in the office at any given time. I don't work in the warehouse, but the creative team and wine planning team always have bottles perched and grouped on tables, desks, the floor, shelves, etc... and one day, when I'm thin, I will be able to walk to the bathroom without all of the bottles shaking and knocking together... My office is so quiet, you could literally hear a pin drop, and when I walk to the bathroom I'm VERY self-conscious about the noise I make. Obviously I'm not the only one this happens to, but I guess my emotions are amplified because of my weight problem.

So HERE'S to no more shaken bottles!!!
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Sunday, February 12, 2012

How much have you lost?

I joined the ThinnerTimesForum, which is a GREAT resource for anyone considering, planning, or post-weight loss surgery. I found a member on the board, and his blog has been very inspiring.

One of his posts has a great equivalency to see in "real-life" how to relate the weight you lost... it's incredible... 

**UPDATED 2/16/2012: is currently down. Here is the list:  **

1 pound = a guinea pig
2 pounds = a rack of baby back ribs
3 pounds = an average human brain
4 pounds = an ostrich egg
5 pounds = a Mac Book Pro
6 pounds = a human’s skin
7.5 pounds = an average newborn
8 pounds = a human head
10 pounds= an average gallon of paint
11 pounds = an average house cat
12 pounds = a Bald Eagle
15 pounds = 10 dozen large eggs (or 120 eggs)
16 pounds = a Sperm Whale’s brain
20 pounds = a car tire
22 pounds = 200 golf balls
24 pounds = a 3-gallon tub of super premium ice cream
25 pounds = an average 2 year old
26 pounds = average weight of a Koala Bear
30 pounds = average vacuum cleaner
31 pounds = average amount of manure produced by a horse each day
33 pounds = a cinder block
36 pounds = a mid-size microwave
40 pounds = a 5-gallon bottle of water or an average human leg
44 pounds = an elephant’s heart
50 pounds = a small bale of hay
55 pounds = a 5000 BTU air conditioner
60 pounds = an elephant’s penis (yep, weighs more than his heart!)
65 pounds = Lotus Mk3 – Aluminum Body Shell
68 pounds = 40” SONY Bravia Widescreen TV
70 pounds = an Irish Setter
77 pounds = a gold brick
80 pounds = the World’s Largest Ball of Tape
90 pounds = a newborn calf
100 pounds = a 2 month old horse
110 pounds = a mature Rough Fell ewe (a breed of sheep, originating in the UK, I had to Google it!)
117 pounds = the average fashion model (and she’s 5’11”)
118 pounds = the complete Encyclopaedia Britannica
120 pounds = amount of trash you throw away in a month
130 pounds = a newborn giraffe
140 pounds = the average amount of sugar a human consumes in one year
144 pounds = an average adult woman (and she’s 5’4”)
150 pounds = the complete Oxford English Dictionary
187 pounds = an average adult man
200 pounds = a Vespa Moped
249.1 pounds = Arnold Schwarzenegger
300 pounds = an average football linesman
400 pounds = a Welsh pony

* weight loss met
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Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Breakfast of {skinny} champions!

This morning I tried a sample of Strawberry Bariatric Advantage High Protein Meal Replacement shake, that my nutritionist gave me. I used skim milk instead of cold water to mix it up, in my brand new 28oz Blenderbottle. It worked GREAT. I can't wait to have my next shake! My nutritionist told me when I use my blender to use "pulse" not "blend" because the shake will get almost cake-batter like. So when I saw the Blenderbottle on, I couldn't wait to try it!

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Tuesday, February 7, 2012


I'm down 8 pounds in 9 days. WOO HOO!
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Monday, February 6, 2012


I was just surfing my new favorite website, Pinterest, and found an awesome photo that a friend posted.

Take a look. You'll probably be surprised by a few things! I was actually craving chocolate a few minutes ago, so I ate 10 mini almonds (the suggested serving size) and it completely cured my urge to shovel my face full of sugary goodness. I'm gonna print this out and put it on my fridge!

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Sunday, February 5, 2012

Lose It!


I've been tracking my food/caloric intake for 6 days now. I just LOVE this app.

It's not just the food tracking that makes this app great, there is also a member forum, where you can meet others just like yourself... trying to lose weight, struggling... succeeding... all of the above.

It's a great resource for ANYONE. I recommend everyone download it :-D
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Friday, February 3, 2012

Damn you, self-facing camera!!

iPhone users, do you ever turn on your camera, and find yourself staring back into your face at a VERY unflattering angle? Yeah. I took one last night when i was trying to sneak a few shots of my snoozing dog. Normally I would have just turned the camera around, but since I am on a weight loss mission, I figured, "Meh, what the hell, just another to add to the thousands of photos I look like shit in." ;-)

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Thursday, February 2, 2012

Appointments #2 and #3

Well, this week I had my consult with Dr. Tim and Dr. Dan. I actually had to go to Dr. Dan's office twice this week. When I called to book my consultation, they assumed I was "choosing" their team, so I met with the program's Nurse Practicioner and Nutritionist before I even got to speak to Dr. Dan. That kind of annoyed me. I felt like they were rushing through the process to get to the next appointment, but that could have just been my insecurity and nervousness projecting onto them.

Anyway, so after what feels like a full week of constant driving around to appointments, I'm going with Dr. Tim... I really felt at home in his office, and not a faceless surgery. I'm actually really excited to have this team on my side. I've starting using the Lose-It! app for iPhone, tracking everything I eat and drink. The app even has a barcode scanner function, so I find myself buying or eating things that I can scan, just for my own amusement. LOL! It's incredible to see that I'm actually eating far less calories per day than I thought, and even FAR more less than I actually should. I guess that is one of my big problems. Not eating enough, not eating enough of the right stuff, and of course, sitting on my @$$ at work for 9-10 hours, then going home and being too tired to do anything other than -- again -- sit on my @$$ until it's time for bed.

Yesterday, however, I used all my extra calories for alcohol. I had three White Russians, 2 Miller Lights, and 4 fluid oz of Jim Beam. I don't usually drink that much, but I had to put my dog of 15 years down, and wanted to drink away my sorrows. It definitely worked. One thing that scared me this morning was my husband -- a 6'4" guy whose is only overweight in his belly -- had a killer hangover and I didn't. I've finally surpassed my husband in weight, and was able to handle my liquor better because I have more fat to absorb it. That's really terrifying. I'm so glad I've entered the WLS program, and can get my life back in order... get my life BACK really.
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Monday, January 30, 2012

Appointment #1

Today I have an appointment with Dr. Tim. I made an appointment with him after the seminar with Dr. Daniel - who said "Shop around, seriously, shop around. You should be 100% comfortable with your surgeon and weight loss team." I'm still waiting to see when my appointment is with Dr. Daniel, but as for my appt with Dr. Tim, I'm looking forward to seeing what he has to say.

I'll keep you posted!
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Thursday, January 26, 2012

Hello and welcome to my blog.

I'm not sure where I want this blog to, but I'm starting on my journey to weight loss via weight loss surgery.

I have been overweight since I was a child. As a "tween" and teen, I was very social and played numerous high-intensity sports. Yet even with 4+ hours of exercise a day, I was the largest girl on the court, field, or ice.

Years of fighting the weight, binging, diets, eating only 500 calories a day for months, I've decided I need help. I've read this a lot on the WLS support forums, and heard it from others often... but this is NOT the "easy way out." This is a serious commitment to weight loss and adapting a healthy lifestyle. It's going to be hard as hell, but I know I'm down for the challenge.

So after words of wisdom from a great friend who went thru WLS herself, and the support and best wishes from loving family, I've attended my first seminar and have been notified that my insurance will cover the surgery 100%.

If you'd like to comment, lurk, or PM me I'd love it! If not, thanks anyway :)

The [one day] Slim Smitty
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