Tag Archives: adventure

Weighing In: One Year Post Surgery

I know! I know! I’ve been missing in action lately (about 2 months) but I’ve got a good excuse; I’ve been busy living life. Work has been CRAZY busy, my wife and I both had birthdays and I put together a stellar birthday weekend with lots of travelling, we bought a house (we signed papers last Thursday and get the keys Monday after work) and I’m helping one of our daughters with wedding planning.

WNBA game, Mariner's game, Seattle Pride, and I wore a formal gown to work. My friends/co-workers glammed up my desk!!
Birthday weekend shenanigans!!
 I am one busy lady!!! I wanted to make sure to write on the anniversary of my surgery though.

Left: July 2016 Right: July 2017

I had my Lap Band surgery on July 29th, 2016. I was almost 500lbs. I had severe chronic back pain and sciatica, lymphedema of the legs, difficulty with movement and breathing and was always just generally uncomfortable. I didn’t get that way overnight. I definitely had an unhealthy relationship with food. I was as n emotional eater and developed an addiction; food was my drug of choice.

Fast forward 365 days…I am down -90lbs and holding. I have been at this current weight for about a month which is A-OK with me. The weight loss with the band has been slow and steady; about 2-3lbs loss per week on average. I’ve learned to have a different relationship with food for sure. Mental health counseling and medication helps me with finding healthier ways to process emotions, anxiety and depression. I’m able to eat about a shot glass amount of food at a sitting so what I choose to eat is super important; nothing too starchy or too fibrous. I also have to be cognizant of how quickly I eat; I have to make sure everything is chewed REALLY well. Because my stomach has limited space, gas or sort back up from eating too quickly can’t be expelled by a burp; I am literally unable.

This journey has been frustrating, scary and quite indelicate at times; for me and for my wife. She deserves an award. I had to learn to eat for sustenance and not allow my ‘eyes to be bigger than my stomach’; literally and figuratively. I had to learn that there are going to be things that I will never eat again and embrace that. Pancakes, waffles, bread…just a few of the things I used to love that I simply can’t have since the surgery. I also have to avoid other favorites like bananas and pineapples, asparagus and broccoli; anything too high in sugar or too stringy/fibrous. Totally worth it though. If i have the unfortunate incidence of food getting stuck on the way down or getting an air bubble trapped while eating, I get one of two results. If I’m lucky, I can stand and walk or put my arms over my head or drink a little bit of a warm beverage and coax it on through. What often happens (here’s the indelicate part) is that it gets stuck and my body forces it back out the way it came. Sounds simple right? Well, because the size of my working tummy is greatly reduced, it’s probably one of the most uncomfortable and excruciating things I’ve experienced.

Looking back would I make the decision to have the procedure again? Absolutely!! I have been able to completely discontinue 4 medications. I no longer have pain and swelling in my muscles and joints. I find that I am a lot more adventurous because I can walk and move for longer periods of time without having to rest. We’ve been on hikes and to festivals and sporting events; I’m experiencing a lot more of my life as opposed to being an observer. I’m able to buy clothes of the rack which I’ve been too big to do for years. It feels AMAZING to be able to walk into the store and try things on. Most importantly, I’m starting to have more days where I feel good in my skin. Not every day but most days and that is a good feeling.

This has been one of the most amazing years of my life!!!

Happy Birthday To Me: My Month In Review

What a crazy, busy month this has been. I am just now able to stop for a breath.
I had two of my little cousins graduate highschool this month.

image
Devontae and Alexis...they're dads are brothers.

At the graduation party I got to spend time with friends and family which was great. Because we live 4+ hours away, we don’t get to see family as often as we’d like.

image
My cousin Jewel
image
My baby, my mama & me
image
Tiny cousins-Jayla, Daysha & Layla
image
Rachael (mom) & Lexi
image
Layla & I perfecting our selfie game

My newest baby cousin was born.

image
Meet Baby Giselle

Then, there was my wife’s birthday! She got her motorcycle endorsement for her birthday.

image

Then, my birthday came! I am serious when I say that I think it should be a national holiday. I look forward to it every year; the higher the number, the bigger the blessing.

image

This is 39!

There were so many birthday activities and I was so full of joy! First, my friends Mel & Lee did a birthday karaoke shindig for me a few other of my cancerian friends. Shenanigans were abundant!

image

Me & Nat Pack! Her birthday is the day before mine.
image

MJ doing her thing
image

Aleena Bobeena!
image

Jennifer & Roman came to hang out with me
image
Carissa

We had quite a time considering it was a Thursday night.

Friday night, my honey took me to are Floetry; one of my favorite duos. It was their reunion tour and I was so here for it!

image

I was too excited and too into dancing and singing along to get many good pics but we had a blast!
The next day, we went on a steam train adventure with the Mt. Rainier Scenic Railway. We had a lot of fun and learned a lot about the rail and lumber history of the west aide of our state.

image
Me with the conductors.
image
Tomi & the conductors
image
Playing tourist

We had such a great weekend and a great month! I can hardly wait until next year.

Weekend Adventures

My wife is very spontaneous which I love. Me? Not so much. Leave it up to me, I am going to plan every aspect of my day down to the minute. When we’re bored at home, she will say “Put some shoes on. Come go with me.” Though it goes against my nature, I trust her completely so I go without question. The result is usually a pretty grand adventure. I have a whole Facebook photo album devoted to our adventures and the things we come across.
Today, we set off on a drive looking for the Pasco Outdoor Swap Meet and ended up lost. We rode and talked and took in the scenery and next thing you know, we’re in Waitsburg.
We travel here on purpose at least once a year to go to the Whoopemup Hollow Cafe. Seriously, some of the best food in the area. After some Main Street foolery…we stopped in for lunch.

image
Waitsburg-the board game.
image
Looks a bit like Jumanji

This is one of the only places I’ve ever gone where every dish is seasoned to perfection.
I had a warm, asparagus bisque to start with.

image
I had to fight to keep my manners in tact while shoveling this in.

Tomi and I shared a crawfish pie. It was a crisp-crusted flatbread that was an amazing marriage of flavors.

image
I didn't want this to end. The flavors were heavenly!

For my lunch, I had goat cheese stuffed ravioli in a sweet potato sauce with collard greens. What?!

image
AMAZING!!

I paired my meal with a local (Seattle) Scotch style ale called the Pike Kilt Lifter.

image

For dessert, we had a mini, New York style cheesecake with strawberry-champagne sorbet and a strawberry compote.

image
Num-Yummy!

What a delicious meal! Definitely not part of my regular eating plan but I love a good (occasional) cheat day.
The food was fantastic but the best part of the day was, of course, the company.

image
My adventure buddy

For those that are curious, Tomi had an Oyster Po’boy with cajun-seasoned, yellow, sweet potato wedges. Yum!