P90X-ing my night

by Christine on March 14th, 2011

filed under Christine's Life Updates

Good morning Revolutionists!

I haven’t updated my blog in about a week! Yikes! Mostly that is because I didn’t have very much to share, but that’s still not an excuse to go AWOL.  Sorry about that! Here’s a little recap of my boring but busy week:

Wednesday after work I went snowshoeing with a friend. We went on a local golf course and walked 9 hilly holes, which took about an hour and a half. It was dark when we got done.  We went out to dinner afterwards and split two appetizers; I had diet sod, some cheese fondue, and some ahi tuna appetizer thing that was delicious. I got home late and fell right asleep.

Thursday I had an appointment with another surgeon at another hospital to discuss options with my port. He highly recommended that I simply re-attach it the way it was always supposed to be, in the same spot, etc.  He gave good reasons why he thought other re-attachment locations would be a bad idea and risky, and I tend to agree with him. I will contact my surgeon this week to schedule a port-reattachment surgery. Man, this has been a long time in coming! Thursday evening we met friends at the local bar for pub trivia. Our team won both at halftime as well as at the end of the night. That meant we got two sets of prizes. We wanted to be good sports, so we gave away one set of prizes to the #2 team.

Friday morning I went to a local event…Global Foundries is building a huge facility in town–it’s the largest commercial building project nation-wide. The meeting was like a Chamber of Commerce event, with 500 people attending, trying to learn how they can get a piece of the work. I met some interesting people while I was there, although I don’t think I met the right people that could potentially give my company work. I must work on my networking skills!

Friday night, after work, we went to a friend’s house to play board games. It was fun, and I got to see some friends I don’t normally get to see. We didn’t get home until about 1 a.m.

Saturday I spent all day writing my book–remember that book I was working on while I was unemployed? Well, I still want to finish it someday, so I spent the day working on it. Then we had dinner with the in-laws, then we met friends for karaoke at a local bar. It was a really packed day, and I was absolutely exhausted by the time we got home.

Sunday we were supposed to go skiing, but I was simply too tired from my hectic schedule. We opted to stay home and sleep in, which was absolutely wonderful and perfect! I spent the day reading the rest of a book on the couch, cleaning the house, and doing some errands around town. I baked some chicken for dinner, with a small side of sauteed vegetables.

Overall, I’ve been eating out at restaurants way too much! I have a fridge full of leftovers that I will never get to. Examples:

  • Thursday I had lunch at a greek restaurant. I had one-third of a salad with gyro meat on top.
  • Thursday night we went to trivia at the local pub. I had chicken tenders (fried) with honey mustard dressing. (don’t worry, I only had three chicken tenders, since they were fried. I did not eat any of my french fries.)
  • Friday I had a garden salad for lunch from a little deli and have TONS of leftovers from it.
  • Friday for dinner I stopped at Paneras for some soup to eat at board game night. John had ordered pizza, which I can’t really eat. Soup was better. I also had some chocolate chip cookies while I was there. BAD!
  • Saturday I had baked fish and a beer at a restaurant while writing my book.
  • Saturday for dinner we went out with the in-laws. I had half a cheeseburger ( no bun) and a small side salad instead of french fries. Hubby ate the other half of my burger.
  • Sunday I skipped lunch and baked a chicken breast for dinner. No eating out!

That’s a LOT of eating out!! It’s expensive, and it’s very hard to control your calories when you do that much outside eating.

My weight is still holding “steady” at three-pounds higher than my goal weight. Not a tragedy, but I’m frustrated that the weight won’t come back down. Surely my dining-out and busy schedule don’t help at all!

At least I got a little bit of exercise in. Last night hubby started P90X, which is a workout video series that is kind of geared towards men.  We did Day 1 of it, and I enjoyed the arm weight strength training. I intend to do Day 2 with the hubby as well and perhaps go hiking or snowshoeing again on Wednesday if the weather holds up!

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What shall I do with my port?

by Christine on September 28th, 2010

filed under Christine's Life Updates, Gastric Banding Surgery

Today I had an appointment with my gastric banding surgeon. First of all, I got a tiny little fill, so I hope that helps me to lose this last 10 pounds. By the way, the fills hurt SIGNIFICANTLY more when you are thinner, without the layer of fat to numb the feeling of the needle.

Secondly, I talked to the doctor about my port site. He agreed that it has become dislodged, but he said that it is not a medical emergency to get it put back in place. In fact, he said that because I’m thinner, he can just flip it around and move to it wherever he wants it.  If I want to get it fixed, it would be considered cosmetic surgery.

Now he said that even if it was put into place, it would be very noticeable on my stomach because I don’t have a heavy layer of fat to cover it up; I’m thinner so it will show. He looked all around my body and said that there is nowhere else he can move it where it would be better hidden. He specifically looked on my side, near my hips, where the doughnut roll is, and said that wouldn’t work. What he said he would have to do is take the port off entirely; keep the hose but lose the port entirely. That means that if I ever needed a fill or unfill (because of future weight gain, IF that happens), then I would have to undergo surgery to get the port put back on. But that’s ONLY if I gained any weight back.

The only concern he has is that, without a layer of fat to protect the port site, that the port could easily begin to erode through my skin. He told me to watch out for that happening, and if it does happen, to come in right away. If that happens they will take the port site off entirely, end of story.

So my surgeon didn’t say that I can’t have it done, but it was interesting to hear what the options are.  He told me to think it over, then come back and visit him on my 2-year bandiversary to let him know what I want to do, if anything. That gives me until February…

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Gastric Banding: Port Problems

by Christine on May 26th, 2010

filed under Gastric Banding Surgery, General Information

Okay I’m going to get personal here.  I’m going to share with you some photos that, well, I haven’t shared with anyone.

So I got the gastric banding surgery a year and a half ago. With the banding surgery, the surgeon places an inflatable band around your stomach, which can inflate/deflate as needed. This helps curb your appetite and helps to limit your portion sizes. In order to inflate the band, the surgeon accesses the port site. You can read more about the surgery/band/port site by clicking here.

My port site is located just above my belly button, to the right hand side. When I got the surgery, I had to press pretty hard to feel the hard knobby bump that is the port.  My surgeon, the amazing Doctor P, said to me at the beginning, “sometimes my patients ask me, ‘will I be able to see the port through the skin?’ and I always reply, ‘if you can see the port, then you should celebrate because it means you can stop losing weight now!”

Well, that time has arrived. I can officially see my port site protruding through my skin. So for all you people that are considering gastric banding surgery (and I would recommend it; I have had terrific results), I am posting these (gross, graphic) photos to show you what may happen eventually.

Exhibit 1: A view of my stomach straight on. It’s somewhat flat. It doesn’t look that bad, right? I mean, sure, I’ve got a little weight left to lose, but I don’t have rolls of fat.  You can also tell by this photo that the incision areas (five of them) are not even noticeable.

My stomach, "straight-on" view

Well, that’s the straight-on view.

Exhibit 2 and Exhibit 3 (two views to show that I’m not making this up) is what *I* see when I look down towards my toes. No I am not sucking in, sticking my abs out, or doing anything exceptional except for just standing.

The Bulge.

The Bulge again. I'm not making this up.

There you have it. THE BULGE.  I look like I belong to the cast of Aliens, don’t I?!  I don’t believe that I’ll ever be able to do a bikini. (Ha! Imagine…I’m even TALKING about a bikini??) Not with this deformity jutting out of my skin.

I half wonder if the port site isn’t attached properly. It is clearly attached at an angle; I can actually GRIP IT and wiggle it around. I think it’s supposed to be attached flat, against your abs. But I’m not entirely sure about anatomy and the proper way of attaching port sites, so I’m not entirely sure what the deal is. Anyone know?

But here’s the whole point of why I am bringing this up…..

Yesterday I brought two air conditioners into the house (read “Attack of the Mouse” by clicking here). They were quite heavy, so I adjusted the weight of the air conditioners against my stomach/hip for better leverage, especially when I hoisted the heavy objects into the window. In the process, the air conditioner PULLED at my port site.

IT HURT LIKE A MOFO!

I wonder…since I can actually PULL at it with my hands, and because it juts out so much, I wonder if I could actually pull it off its attachment to my abs? Could I tear it right off, like a stripper with Velcro pants?

Today it doesn’t hurt as much, but it was quite tender during Yoga last night. For any gastric banding patients out there reading this, please be aware of potential port problems in the future.  You may want to discuss this with your doctor.

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