Sunday, December 30, 2012

Pic dump!

Are you ready for a crazy amount of pictures?! Good! Because here they come! First up, baby bump pictures! Consider yourself lucky I am even posting these! I'm not fond of pointing out my growing stomach, but I might be some day. (Yes, I am wearing the same shirt on purpose!) Followed by ultrasound pics and reveal pics!



8 weeks
21 weeks



8 weeks

21 weeks

18 weeks, Research Study


20 weeks, Anatomy Scan


20 weeks, Anatomy Scan

It's a BOY!!!


21-week update!

Well, time is sure flying here in my world lately. My life is full of work, doctors appointments, work, visiting/talking to family, and MORE doctors appointments! As per my title, I am 21 weeks along in my pregnancy as of this weekend. I am in the middle of my 2nd trimester and in 7 short weeks, I will be in my 3rd trimester (which is pretty much the craziest thing ever to me). Be prepared for a long entry and a ton of pics in a whole other post!

Due to the major disorganization of my last blog update, I am going to try my best to just go in chronological order with this one. At the end of last month, I met my midwife-to-be. Her name is Jill and she was surprisingly young, but she has 2 young kids which she had naturally, so that was a very reassuring to me. She is also one of the midwives that assists in water births. She's very pro-natural birth and letting the mom make the decisions in the birthing process, which is why I love her already! In this appointment, we basically just talked about blood testing for a quad screen (chromosomal abnormalities, downs syndrome) and I also had an early glucose test for gestational diabetes. All of these tests came back normal!

The next week (Dec 7), I went to my 2nd trimester research study appointment (at 18 weeks pregnant). Chris got to come with me this time and it wasn't nearly as long as the first one! I got checked in, peed in a cup, answered some questions, and got an ultrasound! The ultrasound was very fun and exciting. It's always amazing to see a tiny person wiggling around inside of you and not really being able to feel it. She did measurements of the femur, head, arms, and checked out the organs and umbilical cord. She also checked to see the sex of the baby! She had a hard time getting a good view of the goods because the baby was sitting cross-legged but she guessed it might be a boy! She couldn't say for sure, so we had to wait until our anatomy scan at our regular doctor's office to be sure of the sex. Which was a little disappointing because I had plans for reveal pictures to be sent out in Christmas cards and time was running out for that!

The following week wasn't as eventful...It was my sister's birthday this week and for her gift I told her the tentative sex of the baby before anyone else! The next day, I had a counselor appointment. I am finally getting into a routine of seeing her every 2 weeks. I think it's working out well, and if I had time I would probably see her once a week but I just can't swing it right now. We talk about a lot of different things such as dealing with the stressors in my life and talking about my relationship with food and dealing with body image at this time in my life. (More on this below.)

The week before Christmas (Dec 21, actually), we finally got to go to our official anatomy scan! I was 20 weeks exactly the day of the scan. The ultrasound tech got started right away. She looked at and measured the long bones in the body, the head, the spine, and she checked and took pictures of all of the major organs (brain, lungs, heart - which you could see all 4 chambers...totally cool!, kidneys, and bladder). The baby was moving so much she was having trouble getting a good shot of the brain and a profile of the face. It was pretty cute, I won't lie. :)  Then, she went to check out the goods! It took her almost no time at all to see that our baby was, in fact, a little boy! Chris was really holding out hoping for a girl, but there was no doubt now! We are both thrilled of course and will be announcing the name to the world officially after the birth. :) The very next day, after giving up trying to find an actual color photo booth to do the pictures I wanted to do for the reveal, we went to my lovely friend Nikki's house and she took our adorable reveal pictures and put them in a filmstrip style! Photo booth pics without the photo booth! Yay technology! Immediately after she finished our pics, we went to CVS and made a ton of copies (and not enough, we realized later) and that afternoon was spent addressing and stuffing cards for Christmas....they were going to be late, but I didn't really care. I got to do what I wanted to do and that was good enough for me!

Christmas Eve was spent at my Dad's. My mother-in-law joined Chris and I in Bloomington and it was lovely! We had an amazing dinner (that I even participated in making!) opened a few (awesome) presents and just had a nice relaxing evening all around! We gave reveal cards to my dad and step-mom and mother-in-law too. They loved the pics and were very happy to find out they were having a grandson! Christmas Day was spent gallivanting around Indianapolis visiting a good majority of Chris's family and passing out more reveal cards. It was a fun, busy day and thankfully the lovely blizzard held off until that evening after we got home.

Last week, I got to meet up with my midwife, Jill, to go over our anatomy scan results. Chris went this time as well. As suspected, she said everything looked great including all my labs and glucose testing. She did say she wanted a better shot of the baby's face for dating and to check for a cleft palate, so in another week we will be having another small anatomy scan to get a good front view of his face...darn! :) I also told her that we would be starting Bradley Birth Classes in January and she was very happy about that (and I am really excited)! We talked normally (not rushed) and I told her some of my plans for birth and we touched on weight gain as well. She is not judgmental of my weight which I really appreciate. She also measured my stomach (for the first time. This is called fundal height - the measurement between the top of your pubic bone to the top of your uterus) and said it was measuring normal, which surprised me since I have a little extra fluff in that area.

Since getting pregnant, I have gained about 25 lbs (Personally, I think it's all in my midsection, but I could be wrong). This was what I wanted my total weight gain to be for the entire pregnancy, so I'm not really happy with it...but it is what it is. I'm trying to not stress too much over the numbers, as I know that once I have the baby I can get back on the bandwagon (pun intended). I'm not eating terribly all the time, but I am hungry more often than not. I try to keep healthy snacks at work but at home it's a different story. We were going out to eat for dinner almost constantly for a while, but that will be changing now and I'm very glad! Last night, I also messaged a girl on my Lap Band Talk message boards who is due a couple weeks before me and asked to be pregnant band buddies! I'm really in need of finding someone to talk to on a regular basis who is in my situation. I think this will be very beneficial to me in the long run!

As far as my band goes, I can definitely tell it's still doing its job. I just don't have the restriction I used to. As I said before, I cannot eat the amounts of food I used to, but I can still eat an 'average' amount of food - which is more than normal. I do still get stuck from time to time (not to the point of puking or spitting it up though, just to the point of having to slow down and letting that food pass through my band) and this is usually due to eating too fast and it's generally stupid french fries or bread that causes it! I am doing good with only eating french fries (my craving) once a week though. I cannot say the same for bread and pasta as those items help me stay full longer right now.

Also last night, I started a registry on Amazon. It's barely started but I figured it would be a good place to start and get organized and decide what I want here and there. It's also helpful because people that don't shop online can still print it out and find those items elsewhere if they want. It got me thinking more on what I want to do in terms of cloth diapering and baby-wearing. I'm very interested in both of these concepts and have done a fair amount of research already, but there is ALWAYS more to learn when it comes to these topics. After I do my research on cloth diapers and pick ones I would like, I get to present my findings to Chris and see if he agrees and/or thinks it is even feasible. Any advice or personal experience stories on cloth diapers and baby-wearing items are WELCOME AND ENCOURAGED!

The last thing I want to touch on in this blog entry is body image. Now, I know every pregnant girl gets down about their growing form. Our bodies are going through a massive physical and hormonal (and emotional) change. It's a lot to take in and accept. I knew most of the changes my body would be going through before getting pregnant due to the massive amount of research I've done on pregnancy already. However, knowing and experiencing are very different animals. I knew that gaining weight after losing weight would be a difficult thing to accept. I knew my stomach would get bigger and get a lot of attention whether I was ready for it or not. And I knew that I was going to essentially look fatter (instead of pregnant) for a longer period of time than 'average-sized' women. What I didn't know, was how much this would affect me. I suppose you could say that I was blinded by the facade of pregnancy/baby fever. I only saw good parts of pregnancy. I acknowledged the other bits, but saw them in a rather positive light. Now that I am in the thick of pregnancy (another pun intended, you're welcome!) it's becoming harder for me accept the changes to my body.

Logically, I know what my body is supposed to do. I know what's going to happen, but I almost want to say I'm not ready for it emotionally. It's taken me a long time to get to where I am (was) physically in regards to weight loss, but mentally I have not gotten there (I wasn't even close, really). I have always seen myself as the fat girl. When I was gaining my weight back after my first weight loss attempt, it was depressing but it was slow and gradual. Now? Not so much. My stomach is constantly growing. My clothes don't fit. Maternity pants HELP make me look pregnant, but only to people that knew me before I was pregnant. My calves look HUGE. My ankles are swollen but not very because I am still walking stairs every hour while at work, but my calves are obviously larger and retaining some water (at least to me and the lines my socks leave in my legs by the end of the day). At work, I wear nicer clothes and they are all pretty pregnancy-flattering. Granted, if you didn't know I was pregnant - I just look chubby. (And sharing that I am pregnant is another thing I'm torn about because in sharing that information, you draw more attention to your stomach area.) Other times, I wear my t-shirts still. They fit me, but are snug on my stomach, which is obviously larger now. I try not to pay attention to my B-belly (plus size pregnant girl term for the shape of the stomach of a fat pregnant girl) and just go with it, but whenever I see it in the mirror, or even think about it it makes me a bit queasy. Think of that awkward, uncomfortable feeling you occasionally get around people when you feel under dressed or when you dream you are naked in front a room full of people you don't know. I get that feeling multiple times a day, every day, no matter if I'm around people or totally alone. I just randomly feel very uncomfortable in my own skin and want to run and hide...even from myself!

In talking to my counselor about this fact, she has realized (as have I) that I really need to learn to be more accepting of my body with or without pregnancy. I've constantly struggled with my body and weight all my life and have never been happy with what I saw (I'm sure plenty of people can relate), but I am equally bothered by the fact that I feel this is getting in the way of me fully enjoying my pregnancy. My counselor told me to try not to see it that way as it will just make me feel more unnecessary guilt but it's hard not to. I want to look pregnant but I don't want attention drawn to my stomach because I've always tried to hide it. How do you just flip a switch and be okay with people looking at your stomach and wanting to touch it after a LIFETIME of trying to pretend it's not there? (Especially when someone looks at the top half of your stomach ... A little advice everyone - in early pregnancy, the top part of the stomach is smushed organs and FOOD. The baby is in the lower half where the uterus is! Granted, touching that close to someone's lady bits might be a bit awkward. Maybe no touching until the last couple months of pregnancy? Or never...unless you get permission!) So, in light of all of this resurfacing of body issues and general disgust for my shape, I am in the beginning stages of looking into Overeaters Anonymous. I know it may seem a bit extreme in some aspects, but I saw some information on it when I was watching the show Ruby on the Style Network and it really rang some bells for me. Enough so that I feel it might be helpful to me in the long run. I have no idea WHEN I will do this as I am pretty busy right now, but I am leaving it open as an option - even after the baby is born, I lose the baby weight, etc. I think it may be a helpful tool for the long-term.

So, after that 'serious' last half, I'm bidding you farewell! Feel free to message me, leave a comment, etc on baby product opinions, advice, or just general thoughts about what I talked about! I'd love to hear your views! Pictures are next (although they will technically be BEFORE this post) and next month you will get another super long update with a month full of doctor's appointments! They will surely get more exciting the farther along in my pregnancy I get as right now it's just a lot talking. After this next appointment, I will be seen in 3 weeks, and then every 2 weeks! Another crazy, mind-blowing realization. 5 months to go!

Erin

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Where did November go?

November is a busy month for me...so I'm just going to start at the beginning of the month and go from there, k? K!

Ok, I lied. I will start with my end of October midwife appointment. It was pretty routine. Got my first internal exam...that was awesome, as I'm sure all women know how fun those are. We also talked about future appointments, beginnings of birth plans, etc. Oh and she found the heart beat! It was WAY over to the left side and was nice and strong. 

November 2nd was my 5th wedding anniversary! On our actual anniversary day, we went to lunch at Fogo de Chao. This restaurant is a Brazilian all you can eat steakhouse. It's fairly fancy, CRAZY expensive (hence why we went for lunch and not dinner) and it's pretty delicious! You start with the fancy salad bar that is full of not only salad fixin's but smoked meats, pickled veggies, fresh cheeses and breads, and some amazing chicken salad. After you attempt to not stuff yourself on the salad bar, you flip over a little red card to the green side and then come the guys dressed as Brazilian gauchos carrying skewers of meats....like a lot of meat. There are probably about 4-5 types of steaks, filets, along with chicken, and a delicious pork loin. On top of this all you can eat meat they constantly bring to you, you also have unlimited sides of mashed potatoes, fried polenta, and sauteed bananas. All of which, were pretty tasty. Oh! And little cheesy rolls. I cannot tell you how overwhelming it all was...The servers were nice, patient, and very friendly. We will totally go back again when we have the money...which might be a while considering my circumstances.

That weekend, we spent a lovely, stress-free weekend in Bloomington with my Dad and step-mom. We also took a rainy side trip to Nashville, Indiana to walk around all the shops downtown. We didn't spend very long there because the weather was a bit yucky, but we did get lunch and some fudge! (That we didn't even finish in the end, unfortunately.) All-in-all it was a nice weekend and I could use more of them in the future!

The next Friday, I had another counselor appointment. I've been seeing her a lot lately, about once a week since I started seeing her. I have since decided to reduce the appointments to once a month because having an appointment every Friday afternoon gets really tiring. I'm not sure if they are helping yet, per se, we are still just talking and digging into lovely issues and reasons for things. That's about all I'll say about that because well, it's confidential for a reason :) Oh, and earlier this week, I felt the baby move for the first time!!! It was amazing and weird and totally crazy. It felt like someone ran their finger across my uterus from the inside...twice! Now I regularly feel flutters and flip flops, especially if I have any caffeine or am sitting and calm enough to feel it. It's pretty crazy and awesome and I can't wait until Chris can feel it too!

That night, I did have a little scare because I thought I might be leaking fluid. Because of this, I called my doctor's office and because of how I was feeling, she suggested we go ahead and go to the ER. At 4:30....on a Friday. Nothing unusual really happened. We got back fairly quickly, got checked out, and then waited and waited and waited for our discharge. Well, we ended up having to go upstairs for one more test to make sure I wasn't leaking fluid. That took forever as well, especially since it wasn't my normal hospital and they weren't as big. (They were closer, so went there...and my husband got scolded for it and will not make that mistake again, lol.) Long story short, I spent about 4 hours and every thing was fine! Better safe than sorry! The plus side was we got to see the baby! It no longer looks like a little blob anymore! My peanut looks like a baby! Chris saw it first and his face lit and up and he was totally in shock and awe seeing the baby flop and move around inside of me. It melted my heart!

The NEXT weekend after this appointment, my grandma came to town from Florida for the holiday! I went down to see her at my Dad's in Bloomington, along with my other aunts and uncles and a few cousins and it was a great day! I really wish I could have spent more time with them all, but I did get to see my grandma again on Thanksgiving before she left the next morning. Unfortunately, Chris started a new job and its a night shift so he did not get to go to Bloomington with me to visit family, and Thanksgiving night he had to work a security gig at a Kmart from 8pm to 7am. YUCK.

So, Thanksgiving. I made dinner (well, lunch) for myself, Chris, and his mom. I made turkey breasts in the crockpot (that were so big on the bone we had to cut them off to get them in the crockpot!), homemade (first time ever) turkey gravy, green bean casserole, and homemade (also first time ever) red skinned mashed potatoes. Dinner/lunch was a huge success and delicious! I also made my favorite pumpkin spice cake made from spice cake mix, a can of pumpkin, and water. Oh, and with Cool Whip for frosting. So. Yummy! Very successful for my first time!

This Thursday, I am going to a midwife appointment. I will be meeting one of the 3 midwives that does water births. I will also be getting some blood drawn for some baby screening for possible defects or whatnot, and I'll be doing my 1 hour glucose test to determine if I might have gestational diabetes. I don't think I have it, but every pregnant woman goes through this testing, so I will drink the gross sugary drink on an empty stomach and get some blood drawn. I will also hear the heartbeat again, which is always fun, and I will be scheduling my next appointment with another midwife that does water birth, and I will be scheduling my ultrasound that does the anatomy scan and determines the sex of the baby! How crazy is that?! I'm 16 weeks this weekend. Sadly, Chris has a class he can't miss that morning so I will have to go alone :( I did call the doctor's office and make sure he wouldn't be missing anything important or exciting. Let's hope it all goes as planned!

And, that about rounds up my November! Then, the first week of December I will be going to my 2nd research study appointment. This means, I will actually probably find out the sex at THIS appointment assuming the baby isn't too modest. Chris WILL be at this appointment and I'm pretty excited about it!

And now that I'm done rambling...pics!!! FINALLY. I also just got my first pair of maternity jeans and black pants. I have been using a belly band to keep my pants undone and still wear them for about a week or 2 now. My pants fit me everywhere but they are just too snug and uncomfortable to wear buttoned. It's pretty annoying, to be honest. As of today, I have gained roughly 15-20 pounds (more like 13-15 in these pics). Thankfully, I have stayed at this weight for about 2 weeks...so that's a positive! Hopefully, my weight won't go crazy when the baby hits his/her growth spurt since I already had one of my own.

8 weeks





14 weeks




Sunday, October 21, 2012

So many doctors! So little time!

So, my last post, I left off at finding out I was pregnant (!!!), needing to find a doctor and call Dr. Diaz about my band. This is what has gone on since then...

Let's talk lap band stuff first, shall we? After my initial midwife appointment (which I will get to below), I was feeling pretty miserable. I was ravenous every 2 hours and unable to eat real food until around 10 am (and I get up at 6 am to start typing for my part time job! Yes, I kept that job too and am now working 2 jobs. One 30 miles away and the other from home 20ish hours a week.) I couldn't eat until around 10 because my band was just plain snug in the morning. Even before I was pregnant, I always had to drink some coffee and let my band 'wake up' before even thinking about eating. I also wasn't usually hungry until it loosened up either, but all that changed after my little kumquat showed up...On top of being hungry pretty much constantly, I was bloated, emotional, constipated, and training in my new job around a bunch of people that didn't know I was pregnant!

Two weeks after starting my job, I finally got in to see Dr. Diaz. He was very happy with my progress (96 pounds down!) and was very open to suggestions about my band. I was worried he would want a complete unfill, but I really don't think he would have taken any out if I didn't want him too. Ultimately, we agreed that taking out 4 cc (half of my fluid) would be reasonable. It would allow me to eat and the baby to grow and hopefully, I wouldn't have to come back in for another adjustment. This is important because my new insurance does NOT cover anything bariatric related... Awesome, I know. (Neither does pregnancy Medicaid.) I told him I was a bit nervous about this new-found freedom but he reassured me that the band is only a tool and I knew what to do to be successful and I just needed to stick with the same eating habits I had before. (Turns out, easier said than done!) I also talked to my nutritionist about ... well, everything! We talked about calories and poop and everything in between!

Since my unfill (on Sept 27) I have gained roughly 10 pounds. This upsets me a bit, I won't lie. I do know that some of it is water though. Since getting pregnant, my feet and legs swell nightly. Last week, I started walking the stairs for 5 minutes every hour at work to help combat this and to get some exercise in my 12+ hour days full of sitting...I'm hoping this will help combat the weight gain as well (if anything, my ass will look AMAZING). I knew when I got my unfill, I would gain. It's unavoidable. I can eat a lot more than I could, roughly 2-3 times as much (but still not as much as pre-lap banding)! It's a big change, and unfortunately, it has not phased me that much. I know I need to eat, so I do. And yes, the day after I got my unfill, I went straight for a cheeseburger (Whopper Jr. from BK and it was amazing, but I regretted it soon after! SO BLOATED That's why I don't eat those anymore!). Bread, sandwiches, scrambled eggs, muffins anything I had to basically give up due to my band, I have sampled! I'm not proud, but man, it tasted good. I went a little nuts that first week or two, but I'm settling back down now. I eat 3 meals a day and 2-3 snacks and I average anywhere from 1800-2200 calories a day depending on what choices I make. I have been researching like mad for healthy food ideas to keep me satisfied. (It's almost like I found out I was pregnant and lost all knowledge of healthy eating habits.) I almost constantly worry about gaining my weight back. I know I have to gain some, but I really don't want to have to start ALL over again, ya know? I'm already up a size in my pants and I just unpacked all my cute smaller jeans and clothes...that I can't fit into now. I also got rid of pretty much ALL of my fat clothes. Good timing, right? I thought so. (Side note: I found my motivation for drinking water! It's not up to 64 oz but its WAY better than it used to be!)

As for my other doctor's appointments... I met with a midwife first. This first appointment was to confirm my pregnancy (via another pee test) and talk about options and my band. Unfortunately, they do consider me in the high-risk category due to my band (and they drew 15 VILES of blood to do a ton of unnecessary nutrition/vitamin/deficiency testing). The midwife was very nice, answered my questions, and was very straightforward but friendly. I really liked her and was sad that she only worked in the clinic (meaning she did not deliver babies in the adjoining hospital, where I will be giving birth). A couple weeks later, I met with a doctor due to my high risk status. She said she wasn't very concerned about my band, especially since I didn't have any malabsortion (which I already pointed out to the midwife, but they have to follow protocols). She said I should be fine to stay with a midwife for my pregnancy as long as no problems arise. Yay!

In doing pregnancy research, I have become a firm believer that doctors are for emergencies and issues, and midwives are for birthing babies. I see no reason for intervention unless there needs to be. Yes, this means I would like a natural birth. I would have tried for a home birth or a birthing center, but we don't have those options here, and Chris is WAY too paranoid to be okay with that. Ideally, I want to have a water birth, so wish me luck! Thankfully, I found a practice attached to a baby/mom-friendly hospital that employs over 30 midwives and advocates for natural childbirth! I cannot tell you how much better this makes me feel about birthing in a hospital.

After seeing those two doctors, I also got to meet with a counselor. This office offers free counseling to pregnant mothers who need it! I think that is pretty wonderful, especially since I need it! We will be hopefully finding ways for me to cope with all the stress in my life (2 jobs - one brand new, not seeing my husband - ever, a crowded house, baby on the way, etc) and deal with my anxiety without medication. I have seen her three times now and it's going pretty good so far. If anything, it's a nonbiased ear that I can talk too.

This-coming Friday, I have my first physical appointment with my midwife. This means I get to take my clothes off and be thoroughly checked out. Other than that, I have no clue what is actually going to go down.

On top of all of this, I signed up/agreed to do a research study for first time moms. (NuMom2Be) I'm really excited about this! I love research studies and I think its important to gather as much information as you can about things. I even asked Dr. Diaz if there were any pregnancy/lapband related studies going on, but there weren't...So anyway, with this study, they basically just meet with you once a trimester, ask you a few routine questions, do an ultrasound, and that's it! The cool part is I get copies of the ultrasounds, gift cards when I go, and in my 3rd trimester I get a 3D ultrasound and a FREE car seat! How cool is that?!

I already had my first appointment with them after my first midwife appointment. Sadly, Chris couldn't go...I answered a bunch of questions, got my lady bits swabbed, and got my first ultrasound. :) I was pretty nervous going into the ultrasound. It still hadn't set in that I was actually pregnant yet. I had NO IDEA how far along I was due to my freakishly irregular periods. When I saw the little bean on the screen it was pretty amazing. I could see the heart beating on the screen and I could hear a very faint heartbeat! I wish Chris could have seen it too! I got pictures though and after spending 3 hours there, I went on my way (TO EAT!). He did, however, get to be there for my DOCTOR appointment (as mentioned above) in which I got my first ultrasound from the doctor's office (which is separate from the research study). I loved watching Chris's face and reaction to seeing the baby on the ultrasound. And he wasn't expecting to hear a heartbeat, so when he did, he was amazed. I won't lie, I almost cried! He is so happy, it makes me turn into a big puddle of hormonal goo. At the time of this appointment I was 9 weeks and 1 day. As of today, I am 11 weeks and 2 days along.

I had a hard time deciding when to tell the world via my blog and Facebook. I also had to wait until the word spread throughout my families. Originally, I was going to wait until my second trimester, but then I realized, I'm going to tell you (my blog followers) anything and everything that happens no matter what, so why hide it? Right? And there was no WAY I could update my blog and NOT talk about the biggest thing happening in my life right now.

I'm sorry for jumping around, but I thought going in date order would be just as confusing! Also, I have pregnancy brain! Don't judge me! :-p

Until next time
<3 erin="erin">

Thursday, October 18, 2012

A slight change in plans...



*This post was written a few weeks ago. I will have ANOTHER update for a follow up in a couple of days!

So, if you didn’t see my previous one picture post, I am finally into ONEderland at 198.5 pounds! I cannot tell you how awesome it feels to be under 200 pounds again. I feel normal! I’m now 18.5 pounds away from my lowest and 38.5 pounds away from the goal! As awesome as that is, per my post title, there has been a slight change in plans. 

I recently found out that I am pregnant! Words cannot express the excitement, shock, joy, fear, dread, and just plain nervousness I am feeling right now. Obviously, I am happy because this was my ultimate/end goal of getting lap band surgery. This is what I wanted, in the end. However, I wasn’t quite to ‘the end’ yet. I am not upset about this fact, per se…I’m slightly disappointed that I will not get to meet my goal yet. I emphasize the yet because I still have no doubt that I will reach that goal, it will just be postponed for another year or so now. And, I feel reassured that I will have my band after the baby is born to help me get back on track. 

So, let me tell you my ‘how I found out I was pregnant’ story, shall I? If you don’t care to read about body functions/parts/periods then I suggest you skip this paragraph! First, I feel I should say that my periods are so irregular that I was sure that I would need to see a specialist to get pregnant. I was sure if my body was going to regulate after my surgery it would have done so by now…but my periods still came and went as they pleased. That being said, the day after Labor Day (irony) I started feeling what could possibly be my impending period. I was bloated, painfully so, every night that week. I was moody. I was tired. My lower back was hurting randomly. All period symptoms. Then, came some other oddities. All week, I was cold. Not just kind of cold either, like chilled to the bone, I had goose bumps almost 24/7 whether it was cold in the room/outside or hot. I was somewhat concerned about this, and as anyone who has researched pregnancy as much as I have (basically as much as I researched the lap band), I was slightly paranoid. But, I brushed it off. I have always told myself I would not think I was pregnant until my breasts hurt or were tender – the captain obvious sign of pregnancy. Well, thanks to all of these goose bumps, my breasts weren’t tender, but they were a bit sensitive. Again, I was a little suspicious, but I tried to ignore my pregnancy paranoia. That weekend, after talking to Chris about all of these ‘symptoms’ , he suggested I get a pregnancy test. So, we went to Dollar General and got 2 pregnancy tests for $1 each (because really, who pays $10 for ONE CVS brand pregnancy test? I would rather pee in a cup than on a stick if it’s going to save me $9). Sunday morning (September 8), after a night of terribly restless sleep (restless legs actually, something else that’s not normal for me), I got up and took my $1 pregnancy test, fully expecting a negative result. As the urine worked its way slowly through the test, I noticed the control line was oddly low and close to the test line. Then, another line showed up…and my jaw dropped. A million thoughts crossed my mind at that moment, but at the same time, my mind was blank. I went into the bedroom and looked at my sleeping husband, debating on HOW to wake up him and tell him the good news. He knew I was testing that morning, so surely he would wake up easily. I shook him a bit and told him to wake up, and he did (and it’s NEVER that easy), and I shoved the test in his face and he said, “What does that mean?” (because he’s a guy) and I said, “It means yes!” And he smiled and said “Oh boy…” and thus started a very crazy day for us. I ended up taking another test that day and then another one the next morning, just to be sure. They all said the same thing, so I’m inclined to believe them. 

Fast forward to 2 days later, and I get an email from a job I interviewed twice for asking me to call them so they can extend me an offer for a job! I was thrilled and at the same time, terrified. How would they react to me getting a job and then getting pregnant? Oh boy. (Thankfully, they took it in stride and I reassured them I would not be taking any days off until my baby arrived because I need to save up that PTO! And I will be taking all of my doctors’ appointments on Friday afternoons, when I am not working.)

Oddly enough, I feel pretty lucky to be living with my mother-in-law at this point. The space (or lack of) can be an issue, but it also means I do not have to worry about as many bills as I would if we were renting on our own, and I know she will do everything she can to help out, and we will do our best to keep up with our end of things as well. (I think that was my longest sentence ever!) I don’t know if I want to necessarily be here when the baby is born, mostly due to the space issue, but we will play it by ear and hopefully Chris and I will have jobs by then that pay well enough for us to get out on our own. Until then, I am going to try to take advantage of the hospitality I’m being offered and enjoy it while I can! 

As far as my health and weight is concerned, I plan to treat this like a regular pregnancy! I’m already hungry every 3 hours or so. I noticed this a while ago, but just thought I maybe needed a fill, now I realize that may not have been the case! I am not going to try to gain or lose a certain amount of weight. I am going to eat sensibly and try to make smart decisions when it comes to healthy foods (unless of course I NEED something sweet/greasy/etc). I emailed my nutritionist and she suggested I up my calories to 1800 a day! I have already added 300 calories to my usual 1200 so I was a bit surprised by this. She also wants me to get 95 grams of protein in a day! Needless to say, I will be buying some protein shakes, mixes, and bars to fit all that in! She also said to call my surgeon as he may want to do a complete unfill. This did not make me happy. If I am able to keep my calories up and am not having any issues with food, I really don’t think an unfill is necessary. Nonetheless, once I get my first baby doctor appointment done and over with, I will be calling Dr. Diaz to see what he thinks. I’m hoping I can convince him to let me stay at my current fill level unless/until I have issues with it. 

So, on my next update I will let you all know what Dr. Diaz says. I will also find out and inform you if my new midwife (or doctor) considers me high risk or not. And there will be PICTURES!

Until next time (which will possibly be Sunday!)

<3 p="p">
Erin

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

ONEderland!

Hello ONEderland! Nice to see you again :)

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Chugging along!

Ahoy there blog readers!

Monthly update, you ask? Why, it's right here! You may have been expecting my shouting from the rooftops post, but alas, I'm still waiting to reach my 100 lbs lost milestone. I will say, that as of 1 hour ago, I am 95 pounds down and ONE MEASLY pound to ONEderland! (That means I'm at 200 lbs, if you're bad at math.) So there's that at least.

My life has been full of ups and down since moving to Indy. I am still hunting for a full time job. I have had some promising interviews but still have to wait to hear back from others. Some that I thought were promising have disappointed me terribly. Job hunting has become the thorn in my side. Its a hovering cloud over my sunny skies, to say the least. I see a job I know I would rock at; put in an application; call and give them the heads up that I applied and am awesome (if I can find contact information); and sometimes I get a call back for an interview and its very promising and exciting and then....nothing. Not even a 'thanks but no thanks' call or email. Like a one night stand that I wasn't expecting to only be one night. LE SIGH.

So, since I'm job hunting still, I am still BROKE. I've been living off of soup, cereal, spaghetti, and frozen veggies. Needless to say, it's getting old. But whatevs...I'm still losing, although very slowly. I was hoping to be 100 lbs down by now, but my weight was bouncing between the same 3 pounds for about 3 weeks. I have purchased some fiber bills and more multivitamins though, so that's a plus!

The fiber pills... oh man. It said to take 5 pills a DAY. So, I did. Worst. Idea. Ever. That much fiber shocked my insides so bad that (WARNING POO TALK AHEAD) I had TEH POOPS for a full week. Like, I was afraid I was going to get dehydrated. I was very torn between being happy I was even pooing to saying, "not AGAIN!" when I would have to go. Long story short, I've only been taking 2 pills a day now and it has been working fairly well...I may up it to 3 pills a day in a couple weeks...we'll see how that goes.

In other news, I'm still slacking on working out. I'm still WANTING to do at home work outs but I just haven't gotten myself to do it. I always seem to having something to do or somewhere to go. Yesterday, I had to work 2 more hours to get in my stupid 24 hours of work for the week and I didn't get to do them until 8 pm. Where does my day go?! Today is my first free 8 hours since I've been in Indy. (This is because my husband is in class today until 5 pm. Yes, he signed up for a class on a Saturday! He's crazy. In his defense, it's a photography class, so it should at least be fun.) So basically, I just pointed out that I have the free time to figure this out today and I should just get off my arse and do it. FINE (Alex!) I'LL DO IT! Stop giving me that look! o.0''

Alright, so. The next time we speak I WILL be under 200 pounds and at or past my 100 lbs lost mark. I will also have pics and measurements for your viewing/reading pleasure! I can't believe I'm 20 lbs away from where I was 6 years ago and 40 lbs away from my goal. I knew I would get here, but I never thought about what it would feel like. Well, it feels pretty freakin' awesome. I'm currently wearing my Vanity jeans! For those of you that aren't fat, jeans from Vanity means that I am finally not wearing pants from Lane Bryant or Fashion Bug for the first time in about 5 years. I'm finding new things in my closet more than ever and it's awesome! Actually, this weekend I need to get into our storage unit and find some black dress pants that may fit me. I am in dire need of nice pants for interviews (and shirts, for that matter)! I may have to make a Goodwill run. Goodwill in big cities is an AWESOME place to find fat clothes, especially dress pants.

Oh! If anyone has any Cuban-style black beans and rice recipes, preferably with chicken involved, SEND THEM MY WAY. Chris and I had some AMAZING Cuban food at Downtown Disney when we went earlier this year, and I've been wanting to make some ever since! So yummy!

I think I'm done rambling for the day. Hopefully, you will be hearing from me in the beginning of next month, as opposed to the end!

Until next time
<3>

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Almost to ONE-derland!

Hello friends and family!

I wanted to share a quick update with you all... I am super stoked to share with you that I am 91 pounds down and 4 pounds away from being under 200 lbs for the first time in at least 5 years! My goal is so close, I almost cannot fathom it. It's nuts!

I'm really not quite sure how I'm even losing so steadily to be honest. I haven't been working out regularly. We just cancelled our Anytime Fitness membership to help save money until I find a full time job (yeah, I'm still working on that). We know where we WANT to go and sign up, but that won't happen until we both get jobs and get some things paid off! I'm thinking I'm going to put together a NerdFitness-inspired at home workout pretty soon though to hold me over! Who knows, maybe I will like it so much, I'll just stay home and save money! The only real exercise I've been getting is our 2-3 times a week outings my husband and I have throughout the week, weather depending of course. Either way, I'm not going complain! My weight is going down, I'm not over-eating (although I do feel more hungry sometimes and my food choices aren't great, but they are better than what I was eating when I worked at my job in Muncie and ate catered meals with deserts EVERY DAY), and I'm still staying under my calories most days! So yeah, I'll take what I can get!

In other news, last Friday, my husband applied and sent in a video to be on the next season of The Biggest Loser! We got into watching the show a few months ago and we both think he would be awesome at it (and it would be great for him, obviously)! We know its a long-shot but it's still a shot :) It would mean the world to me if anyone who knows him felt the urge to nominate him via email to help get his name out there! We both think this would be a great opportunity for him and the best time in our lives to do it.

Directions are as follows:

Please send nominations to BL14nominations@gmail.com. Please include your name, age and place you reside and the nominee’s name (Chris Stalcup), age (29), current city/state (Indianapolis, IN) and why they deserve the chance to be on The Biggest Loser (Chris's main reason for doing this is to get healthy and start a family, avoid his family history of diabetes, and to get back into the military! You can say that, or something else. If you know my husband and want to help increase his chances, please send The Biggest Loser an email!)

If you do send an email, please let me know so I can thank you! 

Anyway, I plan on shouting it from the rooftops when I reach 100 lbs lost and I will be posting that update with pics and measurements! I don't think I'm going to reach that goal by Chris's birthday (he is turning 30 on August 3rd!) but I will be really close!!!

Until next time <3

Erin!

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Super skinny v. Super sized

Oh hai! Monthly update ahoy! Let's get right into it shall we?

I want to, first, talk about England and their TV shows. Specifically, a series called Super Skinny v. Supersized. One of my BFFs, Elizabeth told me to watch it tonight and I'm on episode 5 already! This show is a series that teams up a super skinny person (not necessarily anorexic, but looking it) with a morbidly to super morbidly obese person for 5 days in hopes of them teaching one another about the good and bad of food. They literally switch meals for every meal in hopes of them learning new habits. Then they both get sent home with a new, healthy, eating plan for 3 months and meet back to see how they have done. They also have side projects of a woman trying different weight loss techniques and another seemingly crazy lady who's goal is to "ban big bums". The main part of the show is pretty interesting to see them switch meals. The information they give you on food is nothing new to me. The weight loss and gains are pretty good. Although, it takes me a bit longer to get the moment of awe because they talk in stones, and I have to quickly multiply it by 14 to get it into pounds. The weight loss technique lady is pretty amusing*. Nothing terribly informing that I didn't already know, but entertaining nonetheless. The bum lady...she's ....different. The premise is she is having women test different techniques to make your butt smaller. Simple enough, but she tells this group of women about their flabby butts and half of them don't even have big butts (at least in my opinion)! She's weird...to say the least. If you have a desire to check this out (I am using YouTube), don't do it with kids around or at work. No, there is no cussing, but it is British television, and as they are not as censored as we are, there are large amounts of bare butts and boobs. You have been warned!

*For one technique, she got a colonic massage (which is something I have looked into and wanted to try!) and in the middle of her session she had to get up to poo! Then, that night she talked about taking such a big poo she clogged the toilet. I laughed...and I was also slightly jealous. I'm pretty sure if I got one of these I would lose a few more inches and fit into MORE CLOTHES...hmm!

As for my life, I am still working part time from home and desperately seeking a new, full-time job to work along with my at home job. Working from home is fun but it's also trying. I love being able to wake up RIGHT at 8 am (or a little past on occasion) and work until noon, take an hour or 2 lunch (eat, wash dishes, run any errands), then type more until dinner...and only 3-4 days a week depending how many hours I work! It's nice, but its not enough money and I feel working at home (with my husband around all the time) is almost too distracting. Either way, I need another job...STAT! Need more money! Need to leave the house! WANT to get dressed and shower before dinner! (Well, sometimes...it can be pretty nice most of the time.)

Unpacking is coming underway nicely. We have a much smaller area to work with so we are trying our best to condense and purge. Our storage unit is completely full. I really didn't think we would fill it. Wow, I was wrong! After 3 weeks, I have FINALLY gotten a lovely armoire thanks to my lovely MIL and gotten all of my clothes unpacked, hung up, too-small ones put back into storage, and even more have been given to Goodwill since I moved in! YAY clothes! I also have a whole new (small) drawer full of jeans and short pants that fit me! Size 20 and a few size 18! I haven't been in a size 18/20 since I got married almost 5 years ago! Woohoo! As of last week, I have lost 88 lbs!!! Annoyingly, I haven't gotten back to working out yet...we are looking at a different, better, cheaper gym, but the sign up fees are too much for us to afford right now. Thankfully, I've still been losing though! I plan on doing updated photos and measurements when I hit my 100-pound goal! I'm SO CLOSE!

Eating-wise, I've been doing okay. There aren't as many healthy choices in my new household (at least, not until I get a new job!) but I am managing. I have gone over my calories a few times, but re-arranging furniture, moving boxes, and outings have helped me with at least SOME cardio activity. I am having a bit of trouble determining if I need a fill though. Some days, I feel as if I can eat WAY more than usual (but not as much as I used to be able to eat) and other days, I feel right on. This is a problem a lot people face when they get to my point in the game. To fill, or not to fill? Due to my current money situation and lack of insurance, I am holding off and just trying to keep my portion sizes as accurate as possible. I desperately need to UP MY WATER, as usual, (I go in phases with water, can you tell?) and get back into a workout routine again. I'm not stressing about it just yet since I am still losing at a pretty decent pace, but if I want to get to my 100-pound goal by my husband's 30th birthday (on August 3), I gotta kick it into high gear! I may even look into the colonic massage to help get things 'flowing' since I am in a bigger city with more options on places to go for this.

Oh! Also, once I get a new job, I want to try the Paleo diet! Ever since I read about it, I desperately wanted to try it! AND I WILL! I have a friend doing it right now and said she feels amazing! (Hi Nikki!) If she can do it while feeding a husband and 3 kids, I should be able to do it to, right?? Of course right! Oh, maybe I will try this sooner rather than later to help with my August goal. Good thinking Erin!

Alright, I better get to bed! I have to get up and work in the morning (in my PJs)! Who knows, I might even get lucky and have time to go work out tomorrow evening! Wish me luck!!!

<3
Erin

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Times, they are a-changin'

Well, well, well...long time-no see, eh? Fear not, readers, for I have not forgotten you! I have simply been amazingly busy! So. Freakin'. Busy.

Let's get on with the update, shall we?

Happy father's day, by the way! We got our dad a pretty awesome card yesterday. We all giggled heartily.

As of 2 weeks ago (3 weeks ago? Oi! I can't remember!), I am down 80 lbs! Woo-hoo!!! I feel like this is a pretty awesome milestone. For one, it means I'm only 20 lbs away from losing 100 lbs! Which would not only get me out of the 200's, but I would put me at only 30 lbs away from my overall goal! It seems like such a small amount to attain since I've come so far, but at the same time, 50 lbs is not easy to lose. This is why I am trying to take it slow and steady, but all the CLOTHES in my closet that want to be worn are making it hard to be patient! I am stuck in my current size, but of course half of the clothes I have in that size are still just tight enough that I cannot wear them comfortably! Go figure. Stupid women's clothes sizing! So yeah, right now, my major motivation to lose 20 more lbs is to get into more of my clothes that I haven't worn in 5 years!

At the end of May, I also had my official one year check-up with Dr. Diaz. We talked about my portion sizes, how long I was staying full, my weight loss so far, and my inability to poo. He was happy that my portions are between 8 and 12 ounces and it was keeping me full for 4-6 hours. We both agreed getting another fill right now was not necessary (of course, I wonder now if I need a small one, but I think I am still doing okay). He was also very pleased with my weight loss and said I was even ahead of the their weight-loss standards for bandsters! Score! Next, we talked about the poo issues. I told him I felt like nothing was helping and asked if he could suggest a stimulant that would help just clear me out! I was miserable the past week or too due to my lack of poo performance! He gave me a prescription and some samples of a medication called Amitiza. Wow. Let me tell you! Actually, I won't...my g-ma reads this! (Hi Memo!) Let's just say that 2 days after using these meds I was 4.5 lbs lighter! I have only taken the samples so far, but I intend to get the prescription filled soon so I can take them as I need them. Thankfully, I haven't needed them since I ran out! YAY!!!

Moving on! This past week has been especially hectic because my husband and I were packing, packing, and packing even more! Why, you ask? We moved to Indianapolis! It's something we've wanted to do for a while, but have never had the means (nor could we find anything as cheap as the rent we pay for the house we had). So, what's changed? Well a couple of months ago, the opportunity (if you wanted to call it that) came up that my mother-in-law had extra space in her house and needed help paying her bills. So, she called us and asked if we would be interested in helping out (we have offered to help her before by moving in). Chris and I decided it would be a great time to get outta dodge and have a change of scenery. For him, he was thrilled to be going home after living in Muncie for 5 years and to be closer to his family. For me, it was a chance to live somewhere other than Muncie for the first time in my life. It is also a much better place to look for a new job! So, we decided, what the hay? Let's move! (Well, okay, there was more thought into than that, but you know what I mean, right?)

So, this weekend, my awesome dad and step-monster (aka step-mom...who is actually really nice!) came up from their town, helped us rent a truck, and helped us move! (Along with my Sissy and my BFF Augusta!) We got almost everything (all of the important stuff at least....except for my shoes! Somehow, I forgot that bag.) moved on Saturday. This next week will consist of going through some crap in the garage of our old house and deciding what should be kept and what should be trashed, getting a few odds and ends from the house, and cleaning like crazy!!! It will also be a lot of me asking, "Should I keep this or throw it out? And if I do keep it, can I fit it in my house or should I put it in storage?" Those questions are already getting really old...I'm very tempted just to say throw it all away! (Or give it away, because I would rather donate my crap than throw it in a dump. Captain Planet would be so proud!)

This next week will also consist of me looking for a new job (also like crazy). I have been looking for jobs and making (lame) follow up phone calls for at least a month or 2 now with no in person interviews yet. So. Lame. Thankfully, after I put in my 2 weeks notice at my current job, they asked if I would be interested in typing from home for them for the rest of the year. Naturally, I said of course! Not only would I get to work from home (in my PJs!!!) but I would get my original pay rate back (from when they lowered me by $2 when I transferred departments)! Sadly, but not surprisingly, they are bumping me down to part-time status and only giving me 24 hours a week. This means I'll be making almost what I am now at my current pay every 2 weeks. Which should be okay since our bills will be easier to handle (part of the reason we moved) and it will also give me a chance to be more present in my job-hunting. The down side is I lose my insurance and have to pay for COBRA. Which is pretty much the lamest lame that ever lamed. Such is life, I suppose. That being said, feel free to let me know of any administrative assistant/secretary/personal assistant jobs in the Indy area that pays at least (but preferably more) than $12.00/hr! :)

Alright! I think I've rambled enough for one night. I'm also still exhausted from all this moving stuff, so...

Until next time (probably next month!)
<3
Erin


OH! PS, My husband is turning 30 in August and I have NO IDEA what to do! Suggestions?

Friday, May 4, 2012

A year ago today...

Do you know what today is? Yes, it is "May the 4th be with you". It is also, sadly, the day that Adam Yauch (aka MCA - 1/3 of the Beastie Boys) has died after a 2 year battle with cancer. But it is also, my one year bandiversary!

A year ago today, I was willingly walking into an OR to have an elective surgery that would forever change me. I wasn't nervous, or scared, or anxious. I had no butterflies in my stomach. I was having a casual conversation with the nurse leading me down the hallway about my hair and how long it was. I wasn't nervous because I was ready. I was beyond ready. I did research for years before getting this surgery. I knew this is what I needed to finally lose weight and keep it off.

So, where am I today? Well, currently, I have an awesome chest cold. It just shifted from my head to my chest. It has dragged me down all week. I worked out Monday morning but the rest of this week was a total fail. I'm not beating myself up about it though. I'm sick. I need to rest. Next Monday, you can bet my ass will be back in the gym at 5:30(ish) in the morning.

I'm 75 lbs down. That is crazy. I'm over half way to my goal of losing 130 lbs total and I'm 25 lbs away from losing 100 lbs. I'm 20 lbs away from ONEderland (being under 200 lbs)! I can't tell you how amazing it will be to be under 200 lbs again. I'm one clothing size away from fitting into a TON of clothes in my closet. (YAY for shopping for "new" clothes in my closet!)

I still have days where I feel huge. Like when my clothes don't look right or I can't seem to find anything that fits. I still feel self conscious when I'm out sometimes. But for the most part, I feel awesome.

I'm not feeling super chatty tonight. I have a lot I want to say but I'm not sure how to get it out (Thanks cold medicine!) So I will leave you with comparison pics! 1 year and 75 lbs...with new hair, new glasses, and new clothes!

Last night, 75 lbs down!
Night before surgery

Saturday, April 21, 2012

A rocking chair?!

Hello friends! Let's go back...way back a few weeks ago to April 8th, when I turned 27! For my birthday, my friend Augusta and I went to a spa and treated ourselves! I got an hour massage,a facial, and a pedicure! Finally! I got my (50 lbs lost) pedicure!!! The massage was amazing, although, it was done at 8 am and I was drinking coffee...And I learned, that you REALLY shouldn't lay on your stomach right after drinking coffee! The first half of my massage was me burping and willing my coffee to stay IN my pouch/stomach. I'm sure the massage therapist was a bit confused, but after a while and some conversation I started talking about the band so meh. Next, I got my facial! She did microderm abrasion and while it was nice, I feel like it just made my face feel icky! I broke out a bit a few days later. Stupid moisturizers! Finally, I got my pedicure, which was equally awesome! My toes are bright orange and match my tattoo nicely!

Nothing much happened in between that and my fill. Except that I got a call from the pre-cert woman from Dr. Diaz's office asking me some questions about when my TriCare ended because apparently, my new insurance is giving her some problems...sigh. She sent in the paperwork to pre-approve my fill 4 weeks before my appointment and one week before the appointment, they finally got back to her and told her I had to meet their criteria to get a FILL. And when I say their criteria, I mean their pre-approval criteria for the SURGERY. (Ya know, that surgery I already had?) Needless to say, it gave me a headache. The woman said she has been fighting with them and will continue to do so for as long as needed. They were trying to tell her I had to have the 6 months of supervised dieting to be approved even though I already had my surgery. She told them they were full of it and I'm still waiting to hear about whats going on with that. She also told me I would have to sign a paper saying I would pay out of pocket if I didn't want to push my appointment back if the insurance decided not to cover my appointment. Heavy sigh.

Let's talk about exercise, shall we? I emailed the people at NerdFitness.com for some help on where to start, and amazingly, a couple days later, they emailed me back! There is a girl that works for them and she emailed me back gave me some great tips and ideas of certain types of workouts to start with! I was very appreciative and a couple weeks later, I buckled down and put together a workout routine (with some help from my friend Alex!) My routine is as follows: 15 minutes of interval walking (no running yet, it scares me!), 15-30 seconds of planks (I can only do 15 right now), 1 set of 10 lb benchpress (I upped this to 15 lbs yesterday), 1 set of 10 squats, 1 set of 12 lb overhead press (with a weight bar), 1 set of 10 deadlifts with the 12 lb bar (this is really just to practice my form before going onto heavier stuff). Repeat 2-4 times (right now it's only 2 times, but I will up it to 3 times on Monday). I also made the decision to start working out in the morning before work. Not only for the reasons everyone says (you feel better throughout the day, it gives you energy, etc) but because if I get it out of the way early, then it won't be on my mind the rest of the day! So (thanks to this article from NerdFitness.com), I said "SUCK IT UP ERIN" and 3 days a week, I've committed myself to getting up at 5 (ok...5:30...ish) in the morning and go work out before work! I just started this last Wednesday and I didn't go this Wednesday because my legs still hurt from my workout on Monday...so I've done my routine a total of 3 times (the first morning I worked out I didn't have my routine figured out....which is why I decided to do one because at 5 am you don't want to have to think about what to do next - you just want to do it!) It's been going well, and I must say, I actually do have more energy despite getting up 1-2 hours earlier than I do on other days! Who knew? Thank you NerdFitness Steve!!!

On to my appointment! My nutritionist meeting went well. I told her that my portion sizes were still too large and my last fill didn't really seem to do much of anything. I also told her I have started a workout routine and I was still dealing with the constipation monster. She told me everything sounded good, and that I should (obviously) be drinking more water, since I suck at it. After another (lame) 30-minute wait, I got to see my little PA buddy, Kami. We talked about the usual (how I'm feeling, am I staying full, constipation, working out, stress, etc) and she looked back at my fill history and figured we would go for another 0.5 cc fill. She numbed me and went to stick me and OW I felt it! She didn't hit the part she numbed so I felt my entire fill! I have to say, it wasn't that painful by any means (a little worse than a shot, I suppose) but I think I'm still happy I get the numbing stuff first!

After my fill, I had some yummy chicken noodle soup from my favorite place in Indy! Paragon! YUMMY. Everything there is amazing! I took it extra easy and careful with my food for the next 2 days because I didn't want to do anything to irritate my band. I'm at my fullest amount yet and I don't want to mess it up! I now have 8 cc in an 11 cc band. Things are going great so far! I can really tell this fill is better than the last one. My portion sizes are probably about 1/3 to 1/2 smaller than they were before! I am eating slower and taking smaller bites and it's working out well! I can tell I'm tighter in the morning now, but I usually drink coffee before I eat any food anyway. The day after my fill at work, I wasn't even hungry until lunchtime! It was crazy, to say the least. So yeah, things are going swimmingly so far. No stuck episodes, a little PBing (productive burping) here and there when I eat too much or too fast, but nothing terrible.

Now, onto the reason for my title...A glider rocking chair. I looked it up. Do you know how much one of those weighs? 71.5 lbs. Why is that significant? Because that's how much weight I'm down!!! OH YES. I have been stuck at 65-68 lbs down for about a MONTH! It was awesome to finally pass that threshold! I am now only 30 lbs away from losing 100 lbs! It seems so close but so far away. I was hoping to be 100 lbs down by my 1 year bandiversary (which is next MONTH!), but I think I'm pretty darn close! I'm hoping with this fill and my awesome new workout routine I can get there by this summer. :] Since I've reached this awesome point in my weight-loss, I took my measurements tonight! Enjoy the fruits of my weight-loss labor and observe how many inches I've lost!

Neck: -1.0
Arms: -3.0
Chest: -6.5
Waist: -10.5 (!!)
Hips: -6.0 (This is why I was stuck in the same size for so long! Stupid pear-shaped body!)
Thighs: -4.5
Total inches lost: -30.5

How do you like me now??? And since I haven't uploaded a pic in forever, I'll give you a few pics from our Disney vacation that I FINALLY uploaded!

My magic ears!

Here's the body shot! Yay for curvy girls!
Chip N Dale liked us! They thought Chris was a tough guy!

Friday, March 30, 2012

Gimp post!

Oh, thought I would miss my monthly update did you? WRONG-O! I have 1.5 days until April!

So, what's going on this month? Firstly, I smashed my finger at work today and it was all bloody and oh my goodness ow painful! It still hurts a bit and I'm praying my fingernail isn't ruined :/ Anyway, that would be why I'm posting gimp...

Let's start at the beginning of March shall we? Chris and I went on our vacation and it was AWESOME! We ended up driving through Indiana, Kentucky, Tennessee, and Georgia in the worst storms to cross the Midwest all year. Chris and I drove through southern Indiana and missed the horrific tornado that hit Henryville by about a mile! We also got stuck on I-24 in between TN and GA for about 3 hours due to downed power lines across the entire highway. We stopped to rest after that lovely ordeal and made it to our hotel in Orlando thoroughly exhausted. We also got upgraded to a suite thanks to them not having the type of room we wanted! So that was awesome. Our hotel was very nice, but everything was so over-priced! I wasn't surprised, of course, but was hoping for some type of break!

Anyway, Disney was amazing! The weather was fabulous, the people and other visitors were all nice and friendly, and Downtown Disney was totally awesome. I got a lovely Minnie Mouse wedding hat and I'm pretty sure it had magical powers! We got some minor special treatment and it was great. This was the honeymoon I had always wanted and more! It was just great. I am lazy, though, and I still have all of my pictures on my phone. I hope to get those on my computer soon though! On our way home, we stopped and met up with some of Chris's family in TN and that was a fun time too!

After our vacation, I had to reschedule my fill appointment because I didn't realize how close it was to my vacation and had no PTO hours to use! I have since re-scheduled it for April 18th. I'm very much looking forward to my appointment because I need another fill! I'm very certain that 0.5 cc I got last month was NOT enough! I'm not staying satisfied and it's driving me crazy. I have been losing still, but very slowly. My weight is fluctuating thanks to constipation...my nemesis!

I'm still struggling with working out on a regular basis as well. Life keeps getting in the way. It's very frustrating and weighs heavily on my mind. I have new workouts I want to try but I can't seem to get to the gym, especially not when the trainer is there to show me how to do these moves I want to do correctly. I'm very frustrated with myself but I can't seem to get shit done about it! I need a work-out buddy like whoa! (I wanted it to by my husband, but that effort seems futile at the moment.)

Otherwise! My life is going just dandy...I'm pretty busy, stressed, and broke, but otherwise happy :) Oh, and my birthday is next Sunday! I'll be 27. I asked my husband to win the Mega Millions tonight for my birthday present. I'll let you know if he gets it for me!

Until next month! Au revoir

Friday, February 17, 2012

It's that time of the month again...

Blog update time! I know you were all sitting on the edge of you seat waiting for an update, so sit back and be ready for a read! 

Let's start with band-related news, shall we? At the end of January, I went with my friend to her WLS seminar. We got there WAY too early (like 3 hours! Oops.) but better early than late, right? Sitting through the seminar wasn't as tiring as I thought it would be. It was interesting sitting through it all after having done it already. I also called ahead and let Dr. Diaz know I would be there. After the seminar, when my friend went back to talk to him, I went along...He thought the best way to go for her would be to get the Gastric Sleeve. I hadn't done much research on this option, but I agreed with Dr. Diaz that since she was heavier than I was when I started this process, and she was older, she had nothing to lose by getting that surgery and losing the weight a little faster than I am. For those that don't know about the Gastric Sleeve, it is a major surgery. There is no re-routing of intestines, but they cut out most of the stomach. They create a 'sleeve' that narrows (to create the pouch for food). This allows for better nutrient absorption (unlike gastric-bypass) and requires less followup appointments (unlike banding). As soon as I got home, I started looking up the surgery and told my friend to do the same. We both concluded that the eating rules and such are pretty much the same as lap band and the weight loss should be a bit faster. Not super fast, like gastric-bypass, but faster than the band at least. I was almost sad I didn't opt for that surgery, but in the end, I had my reasons for the banding option and I don't think my TriCare would have covered it anyway. I did check into my friend's insurance and I'm pretty sure it does cover the sleeve for my friend! She is scheduled to have her psychological evaluation next Friday and we're both really excited! I love helping her along this path and I hope to make it go as smoothly and quickly as possible for her! 

In fact, I like it so much, I really wish we had more of a turn out at the support group meeting we went to together a few days later because I love taking about my surgery and giving the best, most accurate information possible to people considering WLS. It makes me wish I could get a job with St. Vincent's and do it all the time! I would totally rock at that! Support group was very small last month and there were only two people there (including Jeff, the guy that leads the group) and myself that had already had the surgery and about 4 people who were looking into it and/or just starting the process. We even made a new friend there! Hopefully, this month will have a bigger turnout. 

A week later, on February 1, I got my fill! I talked to the nutritionist and everything was dandy there, per usual. And then I went up to get my fill! I talked to my PA about my hunger and how one day I just seemed to be hungry all the time and it never stopped! I also told her I didn't want to go very fast with the fills any more because I knew I was close to being where I needed to be and I did NOT want to get overfilled again! She agreed slower would be better and she gave me 0.5 cc. I don't feel much of a difference (with hunger, although I am getting stuck a bit easier now) but I am still losing so I am going just keep my next appointment 6 weeks out instead of making it sooner.

Speaking of losing...As of today I am 62 pounds down!!! I am almost HALF WAY to my goal! I don't know if I will get to my 100-pound goal by May, but I will be damn close! My work outs have only consisted of walking on my lunch at work because I've been super busy after work ALL THE FREAKING TIME, but I do plan on working out tomorrow and Sunday to give myself a kick start in getting back into this habit. Annoyingly, my clothes don't feel any different...but I know that I lose more slowly in my bottom half than I do my top half (YAY for being pear-shaped!) That reminds me, I need to do my measurements again soon! Maybe this weekend! 

I have also discovered a new website! It's called NerdFitness.com. My friend Nikki turned me on to it and it's amazingly inspiring! The guy that runs it writes great articles on getting your life together and making no excuses! He uses an eating plan based on the Paleo diet which consists of the basics - Meat, fresh fruits and veggies, nuts, etc. Nothing processed, no grains, no dairy. I am seriously considering trying this diet. I don't plan on cutting out diary because I love milk and cheese too much, but the idea of cutting out processed foods sounds amazing. It might be the change I need to kick my weight-loss into gear! Now, I just have to get my husband on board and get all of the crap out of the house...

At NerdFitness, they also put a big emphasis on strength training and how it's good for more than just bulking up for guys. It's for creating strong, thick muscles, and keeping them that way, even when you are losing weight! I feel like that would be a great way to tone up my weak muscles and help with some of this excess skin I'm getting. It's not drastic by any means, but I can see it and I want to do whatever I can to not let it get any worse! Anyway, I will be looking into trying this once I do more research on it for someone in my situation and once I talk to the trainer at my gym to get his thoughts on it as well. Here's hoping! Either way, I highly recommend you check out that website! It's very motivating and empowering to read his posts! I could read that website all day

In other news, my husband and I are gearing up to take the honeymoon we never got to have when we got married! We plan to go to Disney for an ENTIRE WEEK! I am so freaking excited, it's not even funny! I found great deals and tips through another awesome website called mousesavers.com. She gives amazing money-saving advice and you can get special rates at certain hotels through her website! I found a hotel on Disney resort property (but not owned by Disney) for $89 a night! If you have ever looked at prices for Disney trips, you will know how amazing that is (for nicer hotels at least)! We also are able to get Chris's military discount for Disney tickets themselves! So. Amazing. We are beyond excited. This will be our first real vacation together. Ever. (We did go to TN to see his grandmother a couple summers ago but that was only a 3-4 day trip! And we didn't get a chance to do much sight-seeing or anything like that.) Needless to say, we are super excited! So lately my computer time has been spent researching Disney, park crowds, what to pack, where to go, and all of that other fun vacation planning business. Can you tell I like to do research? What a nerd. 


Oh yeah, I got my new glasses! They are totally awesome and I will post a pic of those too as soon as I take a decent pic of them where you can see the color! (They are red ^_^) Work has been a hot mess...Lots of up in the air crap and my boss just left last week and started a new job. I'm really happy for her, but sad too because we really got to know each other over the last year and I'm gonna miss her (for more reasons than one!) :( She's a cool lady. But, now that we don't work together, we are friends on Facebook! We also text at lot about how we are doing and how work is going for each other. Thankfully, she still works in the same city (like a block away really) so I hope that will allow us to have lunch and still hang out!


Lastly, our little house guest, Gizmo, is officially ours! (Well, she's not a puppy per se, but she is the size of one!) We are glad to have her as ours and we hope she likes it here! One day, we hope to be able to get her a (big) playmate (if she allows it, that is, because she is a little spoiled). I won't be complete until I get another big dog in the house, but Gizmo is a great addition either way! 


I think I have finally run out of stuff to ramble about! Until next month! <3