What a whirlwind it’s been but I made it! 100 pounds down (give or take a few depending on the day). Would I like to be smaller? Sure. Will I be? Probably not. I’ve been hovering within this 5 pound range for quite a while. I’m ok with that. In fact, I’m great with that! I hit my triple digit goal. I feel great and my health has dramatically improved. My photographer friend Jessica came out to visit and took some pictures to commemorate the occasion. (Ok, ok, for the dating sites….which is a whole other nightmare of a blog post) I thought I’d share one even though I’m quite camera shy. I’m in a bit of a “coming out” mood, so sharing this picture is a first step. Along with the pounds I’m ready to shed some of this compartmentalization I’ve been wasting so much energy on. So this is me. Flawed, bipolar, but a lot lighter in more ways than one.
Well, for what it’s worth the surgery is done. After a 3 day puke fest and an additional 3 days of gut wrenching pain, I am now at home and healing and feeling surprisingly good. I’m off to a respectable start with 18 pounds gone already. I’m titrating down from the Depakote after showing my psychiatrist my latest liver blood work. (it was almost 3 times high normal). The good news about this is that I know the Depakote would have slowed my progress with the weight loss. The bad news is that I’m going back to 2 out of 3 of my past medications; Lamictal and Abilify. Abilify also causes weight gain but it shouldn’t be as bad as the Depakote and hopefully the surgery will override these effects. It also has a bit of a tranquilizing effect that always made me feel a little underwater. Add to that I know *something* was eating at my stomach before but I never could prove a link to the drugs. Since I’ve pretty much been through the entire list of possible medications in the past 10 years I’m going to have to pick from the lesser of all evils.
So, it seems I’ll still be doing the mind/body balance dance. I guess I always will be. Neither will ever be perfect and that’s ok, I just want to be the healthiest I can be. I’m a little surprised how hungry I still get knowing how small my stomach is right now (4-6 ounces). One of the supposed advantages to this surgery is that they remove the part of your stomach that generates some hunger hormones so I guess I was expecting not to struggle with that feeling. I guess it could be mental, or my hormones rebalancing themselves, but I hope it levels out soon. I have to be super careful to measure out the little bits of food I can eat or I know I could easily consume far beyond my capacity, making myself sick and stretching out my new stomach. I will ask about this at my followup appointment next week.
In the meantime I’m off of work until at least next Thursday. Other than the growing boredom and the underlying guilt about not being at work, I think the downtime is good for me. The last year and especially the last 4 months have been a pretty intense and hectic experience. I’m seeing this 3 weeks as my hitting of the reset button mentally and physically. And watch out, Spring, I plan to emerge from my cocoon reinvented and renewed and ready to take on the world.