Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Day 232: NSVs today

Well, I had several NSV's occur today. My size 42 jeans are fitting a little looser, I'm down to the last notch on my belt, and my wrist watch and wristband are both on the next lower notch each. I also noticed that my neck is much thinner than it was before. A good set of NSV's, I think. Last night I found this really excellent leather jacket at Amazon and I came just this][close to buying it. At the last second, I decided to wait another month. I need to make sure I have enough money for my weekend. Holiday and all that coming up, you know.

The OT yesterday really did a job on my mood, but the music definitely did a better job of combating the nasty mood I was in. By the time I got myself to bed, I was doing much better. My theme song today would probably be more along the lines of Rick Springfield's "Love is alright tonight":

I'm picking up my baby tonight
though her daddy's making trouble
it'll be alright
I'm working hard
I don't know why
I'm like a working class dog
and I just get by

Tonight I'm crawling out from in it
And though we're livin' on the brink
second by second by minute by minute

Love is alright tonight
We're gonna be alright
Love is alright
Love is alright tonight

Everyone's sayin' the sky's gonna fall
don't know where it's gonna stop
if it stops at all
I know the world's goin' crazy alright
I hope it holds together for one more night

Tonight I'm crawling out from in it
And though we're livin' on the brink
second by second by minute by minute


Don't worry Daddy
I'll have her home
at a respectable hour
Go to sleep Daddy
you won't think about tonight
With the night comes a feeling
that I've got this incredible power
Gonna love her Daddy
she'll be feeling it tonight
Alright, it's gonna be alright
It's gonna be alright
it's gonna be alright

Love is alright tonight (baby)
We're gonna be alright
Love is alright
Love is alright tonight

Not that any of that will happen tonight, but the upbeat and positive attitude of the song is how I feel tonight. Especially the line about having an incredible power. Between my patented charming smile and my new slender look, I'm looking pretty fine now. Just 41 pounds to go to goal and I'll be superfine and foxy. I'm already getting the looks now. Soon I'll have the ladies drooling and dripping when they see me walking by.

Get your bib ready, Cindy! I already know you'll be checking me out and staring. Someone might be upset by that! [GRIN] A couple of someones, actually. But I know you can't help yourself, either. It's all good.

Zai Jian!

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Day 231: Not touching it tonight...

Overtime seems to have done a job on my muse and my mood tonight. I'm in a foul mood (not an emotional rage) and can't seem to shake it no matter what I do. I'm going to turn on my tunes and let the music assuage my mood. Sometimes it's the only thing that will work for me. Did you ever wonder why when you're in any sort of emotional pain, you tend to gravitate towards songs that tend to reinforce that emotional mood, like there's some sort of catharsis to hearing the words of someone else that is or has been in the same pain you're suffering. When I'm in a nasty mood (like now), I tend to go for Metallica and other dark rock. One of my favorites when I'm in a nasty mood is Shock Denial Anger Acceptance by Rick Springfield. Idontwantanythingfrom you sums it pretty well:


You only want me when you're high
You try to heal but you crucify
It's the same sh_t / different day
You say sorry like it's supposed to change everything
And everything's okay
But everything you gave to me you went and gave away
to anybody else
with a d_ck

I don't want anything from you
I don't want anything from you
I don't want anything from you

Sorry baby but I can't join your party
And I liked you better the way you were
You're a sad little cliche, you say sorry
like it's supposed to change everything and make it go away
And everything you gave to me I want to give it back to you
on a stick

I don't want anything from you
I don't want anything from you
I don't want anything from you

(I wonder how it got to be) You lied
You happy with your little freak show?
(I wonder how it got to be) You lied
Baby you were just so so
(I wonder how it got to be)
I don't hate you!
I don't hate you!
I don't hate you!

I don't want anything from you
I don't want anything from you
I don't want anything from you

Yeah, I'd say that covers it.

Good night.

Day 230: Monday Weigh-in

Mantra, necessary and onto the scale only to change. Still at 241 pounds. Considering that when I weighed in at the doctor's office last week, I had gained 3 pounds, being back to 241 is a good thing. But it's all ok. The weight is coming off and I'll get to my goal eventually.

BTW, I know I'm late posting this. Get over it. Yesterday and last night the muse just wasn't there. She deserted me yesterday and I couldn't even do one of my "blank" posts. I refuse to beat myself up over it. Given that I have to pull overtime for the rest of the week, trying to post may be an issue. But I'll give it the old college try.

Final thought: the flab on my chest is pretty much gone at this point, but I have too much loose skin on my arms, legs, and abdomen. I could probably lose 20 pounds by having the skin removed. I'm going to drop at least 20 more pounds before I go any further into checking into surgery for removing the excess.


Sunday, August 28, 2011

Day 229: Moving on...

I just spent a great weekend with Stephanie up at Lake Las Vegas in the Loews Las Vegas Hotel. We got there about 830 in the morning, checked in and had a nice breakfast in the Village Montelago and then went down to the pool back at the hotel. The hotel also has a private beach, but it smelled a little fishy so we stayed at the pool for about 3 hours just swimming and talking and enjoying the sun. At least until the clouds moved in. We stayed in the pool for about another 45 minutes and then had some lunch poolside before we went back to the hotel for some private time. Then we got ready about 530 and met some old friends of mine back at the village for dinner at 7.

We ate at the Auld Dubliner, an Irish Pub in the village. The others all had full meals where I just ordered an appetizer. I had the Gaelic Corndog, which was very good. A banger sausage in a Smithwyck batter and fries. I ate about half of the dog and two fries and my sleeve told me I was full. We all had a nice time chatting and laughing and eating and finished up about 845. Chrisy and Frankie headed back to Vegas proper to go see the Fremont Street Experience and Stephanie and I went to the Chocolate shop in the village to get a treat to go with the wine we had chilling in our room. We went back to the room at Loews and enjoyed our wine and chocolate and each other. We got up this morning and had a late breakfast. I've learned that my sleeve can and will notify me when it's time to stop eating, and as long as I do that and don't graze, I can eat what ever I want, really. I just tend to keep protein on the high side and carbs on the low side and everything else will fall into place normally. I'm still losing weight and that's the important thing. I'll make my goal weight and then worry about anything else.

I'm becoming quite fond of Stephanie, and I'm considering asking her to be exclusive to each other. I'm fairly certain she has been exclusive to me, but I can't say that I have been exclusive to her, and I think it may be time to reconsider the way I've been doing things. I'm not going to jump on that bridge just yet though. I'm going out of town Labor Day weekend , so it's going to be a couple of weeks before we see each other again.

I think I'm done gushing for today.

Do videnja!

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Day 228: Life must go on.

Despite the tragic news from Thursday, I can't change what happened and my friend can't come back so moving forward is the only option left to me. And I can play the "What If" game all day long and it doesn't matter because you can't remake the past. All you can do is build to a future. Gabrielle will be missed, and not just by me. I'm sure her family is in deep mourning right now and I wish them all the best and hope they get past the grief quickly. For a short, brief time in my life Gabrielle was mine and I was hers. Far too brief for both of us, but things happen the way they do for some reason. It just serves to remind me to cherish the time I spend with those I love that much more.

On the subject of spending time with those I love, one of the friends I reconnected with during my High School Reunion came out with her husband for a visit and I went to spend the evening with them after work. We met at their hotel, then went to get some pizza at my favorite pizza place. Then I gave them a tour of my condo and then we went to Karaoke. We had a good time laughing and singing and carrying on. Chrisy and I got up and sang a duet together and we had a good time doing it. We haven't sung together since we were in choir 25 years ago but we could still sing like we were in high school. We did "You're the one that I want" from Grease. It was a blast. We were both a little nervous, but that's ok. The odd thing is, in High School, we weren't great friends and didn't really hang out other than choir, but at the reunion we bonded almost instantly. It's weird how that kind of thing happens. I get the feeling that the two of us are going to be close and possibly even best friends from here on.

And before anybody gets any stupid ideas about my happy ending, just let that shit go. Chrisy is clearly happily married and her husband is a great guy. More importantly, I will not do to another person what was done to me. I'm not that selfish. If she were single, I could see myself making a play for her, but not if she's married. I was a third wheel a long time ago and that almost never turns out the way you expect or want. Someone ends up getting hurt. Maybe it's just me that gets hurt in those situations, though. It seems like every time I get in a third wheel situation, no matter which wheel I am, I get hurt. But sometimes there is collateral damage. When I got involved with Darci, Connie and Candace were hurt by my decision as well. The last break up also hurt Candace because she's never seen those particular friends since then. She's managed to make new ones, but I still hate the fact that she had to lose her friends and it wasn't her fault. I'm afraid that she might start seeing any relationship I might get into as a threat to her having friends and she'll stop trying to make friends because she's afraid of losing them.

Well, I need to call this quits and get some sleep. Busy day tomorrow.


Friday, August 26, 2011

Day 227: A friend has passed across the Rainbow Bridge

I wasn't expecting to be writing about something like this today, and I knew today's post would be short, but it's going to be even shorter than I expected. My friend that went into the hospital with 3rd degree sunburns passed in her sleep recently. I was just notified by one of her family friends last night of her passing, so I'm a little shocked and saddened this morning. She was a beautiful, vibrant woman and this event just served to reinforce in my mind how quickly life can end for anybody. Life is too short to let it just pass by.

I'm going to say it again, don't let someone you love go without knowing how you feel. She knew I cared for her and I considered her a friend. Hell, 20 years ago I would have married her but our lives went in totally opposite directions and we both moved on. I hold no regrets for anything I did regarding her, I was always honest with her about how I felt. The one silver lining to her passing is that she went quietly in her sleep and in no pain.

I'm tearing up a little here, so I'm going to sign off here. My customary goodbye to everyone is going to be a good bye to her.

Au Revoir, Princesse...

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Day 226: Another visit to the doctor's office

Well, the doctor's visit went very well today with one notable exception. I'll cover the good first and then the exception. My blood pressure is back to normal (for me), and he wants me to cut back on the d intake as it's getting a little high and my testosterone levels are around 600. Not bad considering I haven't had a shot in about 6 weeks. He wants me to stay on the T therapy for another month and see if my testosterone jumps up again. If it does, he is going to consider taking me off Testosterone entirely. The exception: He said there is blood in my urine and he wants to run me through a battery of tests next Friday and see if it's remnants from my stones or if I have another stone brewing. You know, I wanted next Friday off of work, but not for that reason. Oh well.

The doctor is very pleased with my weight loss and overall health (with the exception of the blood in the urine) and he wants me to step up my workouts. Given that he hasn't steered me wrong yet, I can do that with no problem.

Cindy has lost another 2 pounds this week bringing her body weight down to 221 pounds. She's just that close to leaving the 220's behind. I was really hoping she would get there this week. Probably next week. I kind of wish she and I could swap weight loss for just one week so she could get to her first mini goal of 199 faster. She'll get there, but I want her to reach that mini-goal to boost her morale a bit. It's really amazing when it happens and how it boosts your spirits.

I'll probably be posting early tomorrow morning as well, seeing as I'll be meeting my friends at the Imperial Palace after I get off work tomorrow night and I probably won't have time to post tomorrow night.

Do Svidanja!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Day 225: Losing it all

I'm referring to my weight, not anything more significant than that. I still can't believe I've lost almost 180 pounds since I started this journey last year, and most of that since this last January. I am so close to my goal now I can see it on the horizon. I'm feeling really good about the whole thing right now. I've been getting some extra sleep lately by going to bed an hour or two early and I think that's making a difference in my overall attitude towards the whole thing. Of course, not having to work a mass of overtime helps a bit as well. The heat around here has been...oppressive, to say the least. I'm reminded of Robin Williams in "Good Morning, Vietnam!" when he says, "This isn't hot, this is the setting for London Broil." It's supposed to be 110 for the next two days. I'm not looking forward to that. Not at all. I want the weather to start cooling off so I can start walking again in addition to working out.

I have some old friends coming into town this weekend and I'm looking forward to spending time with them. I'll be meeting them Friday night and then having dinner with them Saturday evening out at Lake Las Vegas. I'm going to be able to get into my clubbing clothes, including my new "Rebel" vest which I'm not allowed to wear at work because it might cause an incident. I swear, some people are too damn politically correct nowadays. But it's not worth causing an uproar about. I just wish they would let old shit go, you know? It's not a political statement, it's a fashion statement. Leave it alone.

Anyway, tomorrow is Cindy's weigh in and I hope she has some good numbers for the weigh in. I'm hoping she'll have a 4 pound loss so she'll be down into the next mark for weight loss. I'll know tomorrow.


Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Day 224: Unexpected comments

Work was uplifting and unexpected yesterday. Not the work itself, but the comments I received from my coworkers. One commented on how different my face looks now, another just said I was getting skinny now. Others just asked how much I had lost and mentioned how well I was doing. It was very uplifting. My friends on Facebook commented on my losses to date and a few asked me for my daily intakes because they want to try it for themselves and see if they can get the kind of losses that I have. I hope it works for them, but my intake was developed over the last 8 months of trial and error and works for me and may not work for everyone.

I will never consider getting this surgery as a mistake. It has made a huge difference in my life and I am far happier being at this lower weight than I ever was as a heavyweight. Maybe, just maybe, when I'm completely truly happy with myself someone else will be happy to be with me as well. I know that I'm kind of a work in progress right now. My journey of weight loss is rapidly approaching the goal weight now. Once I get to goal and start maintenance, things are going to change. I have to get into the gym and start building and toning muscle. Hopefully before the end of the year.

Well, It's time to get ready for work. See you tomorrow!

Min Tian Jian!

Monday, August 22, 2011

Day 223: Monday weigh-in, a mini-goal and an NSV achieved!

Well, it's Monday and time for my official weigh-in: Current body weight 241 lbs. That's a 6 pound loss for the week, 152 pounds lost since surgery, and 179 pounds lost overall. That's a great set of numbers to look at. I've lost more than 150 pounds since my surgery, which is a mini-goal for me. The NSV came from when I pulled out my Battle Dress Uniform (BDU) and just for grins, I tried it on. It fit! Holy Mother of God, it FIT!!! I haven't been able to get into my BDUs in almost 20 years. So yeah, MAJOR NSV today!

I'm a little flabbergasted at the whole thing. If you had told me a year ago that I would be less than 50 pounds from my goal weight by this time, I would have scoffed at you. I would not have believed it was possible. In some ways, it's still so unbelievable that it's been so fast. The last time I honestly worked at losing weight when I wanted to join the Army, it took me the better part of 2 years to lose 75 pounds. Now here I am, 20 years later and thanks to the VSG, I've lost twice that in less than 8 months. The only thing I can say on the subject of the VSG is if you're considering having it done, get off the fence and do it! You'll be a lot happier.

I also want to talk about another VSG'er that has had success, and that's Cindy. As of last Thursday, she is down to 223 pounds. She's not seeing the same massive weight loss that I've seen, but she's losing two to three pounds per week consistently. I think she will definitely make her goal weight within the year. She's been wanting to lose her excess weight ever since I met her and the surgery is making that happen. It's really a miracle for both of us.

I have to get things ready and head to work now, so I'm signing off here.

Doi gen!

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Day 222: WTH? How did that happen?

Out of sheer morbid curiosity...well, curiosity, anyway... I stepped on the scales this morning to check my weight. I wasn't expecting any massive change, but I saw one. I've dropped 5 pounds so far this week. My official weigh in will be tomorrow, but I had to check it this morning for some reason. Normally, I'm very good at maintaining my weigh in discipline, but today wasn't one of those days.

I'm starting to question what is the cause of this ultra-rapid weight loss. I mean, I want to lose the weight, but this seems a bit extreme. Normally, once you've lost this much weight, it slows down to a crawl for the last few pounds, but it seems that my delay over July was my body resting and prepping for the final sprint to the finish line. As ridiculous as this may sound, I almost think that my deep-seated desire to get a certain someone back is fueling this change, like in my subconscious I believe that when I get to my goal weight things will change to the way I want them. But that's way too dangerous to let that belief stand. If that's the case, if it fails, I could get into a total spin out and literally waste away past my goal weight. Anybody that saw me when I graduated from Basic Training will tell you that at 175 I was too skinny and sickly. I was clumsy and looked like a concentration camp victim. Maybe Dawn was right and I am losing too much weight. People that know me and have known me for a long while aren't recognizing me now because of the weight loss. What does that say about the whole thing? The people that know me best can't recognize me anymore? And is that just due to the weight loss or have I also changed so much in the way I act now that they don't see me inside this new body of mine?

It's a little scary to think that my whole being has changed that much. But I'm probably reading too much into the whole thing because I've had my mindset prepped for the weight loss to slow down as I get close to my goal weight. I could be one of the ones that the surgery worked a miracle for and I'm just going to hit that goal weight quickly and go into maintenance mode. More than likely, I'm a "results not typical" patient.

Ah well, I guess I'm probably worried about nothing.


Saturday, August 20, 2011

Day 221: Expounding on the concept of exercise

I've noticed that so many people think that exercise means joining a gym and that's the end all of it. The reality is anything that gets you active can qualify as exercise. Walking, biking, running, going for a hike, dancing, even sex qualifies as getting exercise (and one of the more enjoyable forms of it too).

To that end, now that I'm below the 250 mark, I have to seriously consider more strenuous workouts. I'm going to see my doctor again next week and see if he will release me to go back to the Krav Maga classes. If not, then I'm going to join a gym for sure so I can get access to the heavy weights and a trainer. I need to start rebuilding now that I'm so close to my goal weight.

Not much else to say, it's stil early in the morning and I have plans for today so I will blog again tomorrow.

Ser deg senere!

Friday, August 19, 2011

Day 220: an unexpected NSV today

Well, something came right out of the blue today. One of my co-workers walked into the restroom when I was washing my hands and said, "What's up, Bones?" I just turned and stared at him for a second and he thought I took offense at the name. He apologized, but then he said, "Can't really call you "Big Man" anymore, you know?" I didn't take offense at all, but it really caught me off guard. I wasn't expecting it at all. Later on in the day I had to ask one of the supervisors a question and he just stared at me for a second while I was trying to explain my question and he said "Sorry to stare, but you just look so different now. You're a completely different person now."

The thing is, I am completely different physically now. I've lost the equivalent body weight of a high school athlete. And since the weight loss is so rapid, my body is still strong enough to hold the weight I was carrying before, which makes me far stronger than anyone realizes. Mentally, I've changed as well. I view a lot of things differently now. My view of food is not so much "fill me up" as it is "Taste good and make me feel good about it." Rather than viewing my social life as not having a significant other in my life, I view it now as being free to do as I will with whom I will. Of course, if I'm overtired, my mental state and emotional outlook tend to reflect that as evidenced by last Saturday's blog o'doom. When I go out now, I can see women checking me out as I walk by and that feels really good. Even Cindy still checks me out when she sees me.

Tomorrow's blog will likely be a little early as right now I have plans for tomorrow night. I have to get up early and get labs drawn (again). Hopefully it will be another quick in and out like last time. We will see in the morning.

Goi Jin!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Day 219:The fine art of distraction...

I'm not talking about distracting other people like the masters of prestidigitation (although that does come into play occasionally), I'm talking about distracting yourself. Face facts, food is an issue for anyone with weight problems. We use it as a hobby, a distraction, a emotional buffer, a security blanket, you name it, we've used it. But now we have to find something else. At work it's usually not a problem. Later at night it's sometimes an issue, especially since hunger has started making a reappearance in the lineup.

Well, I have a number of distractions to help me avoid that now. Chats, the blog, facebook, painting my miniatures, playing with my daughter, talking on the phone with old friends and music! I love music. I just picked up the new Blake Shelton CD because I heard "Honeybee" and it was great. I'm wandering through youtube looking for music (Found Porn Star Dancing doing that!) and just enjoying it.

On my free weekends I like to go out and dance or sing or just have a couple of drinks. Anything other than just sitting around getting bored and eating. It's all good and I have more friends now. That's a good thing.

If you think food is playing a bigger part in your life than just keeping you alive, then start finding SOMETHING else to fill that void. Just do it. Do something different. Have fun. The surgery is a start to a new life. Start living it.


Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Day 218: Is life too short?

I was relaxing, watching Two and a Half Men, when one of the characters said something about life being too short. It occurs to me that they are right. Life is too short to be screwing around with things that don't really matter. That's one of the reasons I got the surgery, so I wouldn't die too early. In the long span of the universe, our lives aren't even the blink of an eye. It's a sobering thought, for example, that when Mozart was my age he had been dead for 7 years. Now I ask myself what have I accomplished. Well, I fought in a war, raised a child, managed to destroy three relationships, earned a degree and most recently lost over 170 pounds. I guess I've done fairly well all things considered. It's life, not a script. It can't be designed, it has to be lived. And that's the key to life. We have to live it.

In the regard of living my life, I am not going to keep things in check anymore. I'm going to say what I am thinking and express what I'm feeling. So off to the races with the whole thing.

To Mom and Dad, you two have always provided me with love and support. You pushed me when I needed it, you cheered me when I was reaching for my goals, you applauded me when I succeeded and you comforted me when I lost. I love you guys

To my sister, Dawn. I know we fought like cats and dogs when we were living under the same roof, but we've grown up and learned to love each other the way siblings should. You found a great guy in Scott and I hope you two are very happy together. Love ya, big Sis!

To my bro, Wayne. We don't always see eye to eye, but we've always looked out for each other and that's what's important. We're brothers in all but blood. You're the older brother I wanted growing up. Anywhere, anytime you need me, I'm there for you.

To Connie. I'm sorry for what I did, destroying our marriage the way I did for ...well, nothing in the end. But we've become better friends and we do have a beautiful little girl together. I sometimes think that I should have stuck to my guns, but I was selfish and thoughtless and couldn't see beyond what I wanted right then. I couldn't see what I was losing. I still love you, but I know I've fallen too far and we've drifted too far apart.

To Darci. We started out as friends and became best friends, and then we both let things get away from us. We both know now what caused us to fail as a couple, but thanks to the miracle of forgiveness, we're back to being friends now. I hope you have a wonderful life with Kendall. Love ya, Starlight!

And last, but not least, to Cindy. Despite everything, I still worry about you. I still care about you. I still love you with all my heart. There isn't anything I wouldn't do to have you back. You being in my life motivated me to become better and to improve not only for myself, but also for you. Thank you for everything you did for me. I love you.

I'm done for tonight.

Catch y'all on the flip side.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Day 217: Blank blank blankity blank blank.

6PM: Not cursing (yet) but I have no good ideas for the blogspace tonight. What to talk about tonight...

Still stumped...

This is ridiculous...

Come on, brain! Work with me here!

I'm rapidly running out of time, so I'm going to pick a subject related to weight loss and just run with it.. Spinning the wheel of weight loss!


And the winner is...Diet plans/packaged meals. What the Hell? Oh, like Weight watchers, Jenny Craig, Nutrisystem, etcetera. Ok, I can expound on that with a little authority having been down both the Weight Watcher and Jenny Craig routes.

I don't think they will be all that relevant in the postop world of the sleever, mainly because the serving sizes are still over 4 ounces, but I'm going to go over it anyway. The basic idea is that you pay for the program, and then you buy the meals from them and go in for a visit once per week to weigh in, talk to the counselor and pick up more food. The meals are prepackaged and ready to microwave and a lot of them are very tasty. Some are not quite so tasty, and some are just plain gross. On top of that, you still have to buy a few things at the store to round everything out. The programs work as long as you stay on them and adjust your mindset for the maintenance phase after. Most people don't. They lapse back to old eating habits, old exercise habits and studies show that most people regain all of the weight they lost plus more on top of it. It's not pleasant. It happened to me. I used Jenny Craig to lose enough weight to get in the army, but once I got out and I wasn't working out regularly, it all came back plus a lot more. I was at 285 when I wanted to go in the army and I had to lose 75 pounds to qualify to get in the army. I weighed roughly 200 while I was in the army. When I decided to get my surgery, I weighed in at 420 pounds. So I regained almost 3 times what I had lost because I didn't retrain my mindset. Add in the costs and it's not worth it for a failure.

Weight watchers really isn't that different except you can buy the meals at almost any store. But I hate dealing with the fershlugginer' point system. No thanks.

For me, the surgery was the single best thing I did for weight loss. I have to change my mindset to succeed and I have successfully changed it. I am more active and outgoing, I eat far less and I am satisfied with the amounts I eat. I think I will probably make my goal weight ahead of my 1 year sleeveaversary, and I'm ok with that. To go from 420 pounds to 200 pounds in a year or less will be an incredible accomplishment.

Auf Weidersehen!

Monday, August 15, 2011

Day 216: Monday weigh-in

I said my mantra, did the necessary and stepped up to a 2 pound weight loss this morning. The 9 pound loss last week sounds great at first, but when that happens with the suddenly lower blood pressure, I get concerned. I prefer the 2 to 5 pound a week loss, honestly. I've gotten to the point that as long as it keeps coming off and I don't regain weight, it's all ok. I don't care if it takes another 6 months, a year, 2 years. Whatever. I just want to get to that goal weight. 200 pounds is attainable. My sister thinks I should stop losing now, that I'm getting too skinny. I don't agree with her and neither would my doctor. He wants to see me get down to that goal weight and I definitely want to see that as well. Once I get down there, If I regain to 215, I can live with that. As long as I reach 200. Not that it's an obsession, but I have a goal and I am not giving up on it. I just will not do it.

I'm seriously considering joining a gym here in the next day or so and start my heavy workouts. I keep putting it off, and my doctor really wants me to get going on it.

I have to make a decision shortly, either way.

We will see.


Sunday, August 14, 2011

Day 215: A good night's sleep can do some amazing things to a mood.

Well, I got about 9 hours of sleep last night and I woke up feeling fully recharged and raring to go. My will and strength were renewed and I feel like I can continue on now. Being up too late Friday night coupled with having to work a full shift on Saturday must have just wreaked havoc on my overall mood and emotional balance and then having that date cancel on me was just the final topper to everything that had happened.

I had a visit from the young woman I went with to Laughlin. She just returned from a trip to Canada, and she said that she had missed me and wanted to see me again. When I saw her, I realized that I was wanting to see her too. I talked about her with my sister and I explained how the age difference bothered me a little. My sister just said, "12 years isn't that big of a deal, not if you like her." My sister is right on that subject. The age difference doesn't matter. She really does have a lot to offer. She's smart, educated, makes good money, has a career and has a good heart. She really would be a good choice for me. But I am not going to rush in to this one. I did that last time and...well, read through the blog for more details.

While we were together today, I had a bit of an NSV. I was telling her some story from my past and I tend to talk with my hands. Anyway, I noticed that my knuckles and tendons are really starting to stand out on my hands, as are the veins in my arms.

Well, I have to get up in a few hours and weigh in. I hope my body is still on a losing streak come 5 am.

Do svidanja!

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Day 214: Tonight's not so busy...

On top of not enough sleep, 8 hours overtime and the assheads in upper management putting us on jobs that we aren't trained for so they can try to resolve these outages, I got a text from the woman I was supposed to have a date with tonight cancelling the date. I'm somewhat less than pleased right now. I'm tired, I'm fed up, and I'm feeling a little alone in the world right now.

Right now, I feel like every relationship I've been in was expressly for the betterment of the other person. The one thing Connie wanted more than anything was to be a mother. With me, she got Candace. Darci wanted someone that could lead her out of the darkness she was in and I showed her the way to the light. Cindy never really told me what she wanted more than anything, but she admitted that I did things for her that no man had ever done before. All I wanted was someone who could just love me for me, for who and what I am, but I guess that's not what I'm going to get out of this life. It seems like I lose a little more each time. I'm tired of getting the fuzzy end of the lollipop. I'm tired of giving to the detriment of myself. I'm tired of losing. I'm tired of giving of myself and someone else getting the benefits of my work.

This might be coming from being overtired, but I've had it with the whole mess. Sometimes it feels like my will is slowly being sapped from me, and I won't have any left to continue the journey. I'm going to end this transmission here and ask for a sign, some guidance, something to keep me going. I feel like I'm stumbling, and my strength is all but gone. Lord, show me something, anything to keep me going. You know what I really, truly want. I need help finding the path there. I'm lost in the darkness and cant find the way and I keep stumbling on every step.

Help me.

Day 213: I know, I'm late...

I don't really care, either. Two hours from the end of the work day they hit us with [FOXTROT]ing overtime for the weekend. 8 hours either Saturday or Sunday, and I'm hating upper management right now. Hate hate hate. Well, after work, I went to go meet my Sister and her boyfriend at the Santa Fe for Dinner and then I went to a party tonight. Had a good time, talked to a bunch of people and just chilled out and didn't think about work at all. Not until I left because I have to get up in a few hours for work. Ah well, more money for my Labor Day trip.

I'll try to post again later today, but tonight's going to be busy.

No promises.


Thursday, August 11, 2011

Day 212: An unexpected NSV today

I had a doctor's appointment today and I somehow left my cell phone on my desk at work. By the time I realized I had left it there, I had to haul ass back to the office to get it before my doctor's appointment. I parked, ran in, buttonhooked around the corners to get to my desk and I was on my way out when one of the ladies in the office stopped me on my way out and said, "I saw you run in and you were moving so effortlessly, like you were weightless. It was really impressive." I really didn't think about it, I just ran in, but when she brought it to my attention, she was right. It was effortless for me. I might have to consider actually jogging or running now.

The doctor's visit was very good. My blood pressure was 114 over 80, my weight was right where it should be, and the doctor was very pleased with my weight loss to date. We had a very frank discussion about the loose skin and he wants me to go consult with a plastic surgeon who specializes in skin removal for bariatric patients. He wants me to get more labs drawn (groan) and go back in a couple of weeks to see him again. I'm getting closer to that goal weight every day and my doctor is really helping me get there. If you haven't kept your primary care physician in the loop for this process, shame on you. That doctor should be fully appraised at every step along the way. If it hadn't been for my doctor, I wouldn't have been able to get my surgery at all. He really helped me get there.

Ok, I'm done expounding for tonight.

See you tomorrow!

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Day 211: Seven months out

Well, today is my seventh month post-op and I thought I would talk about my journey right from the beginning. I could start from the surgery, but I think I should start from where it starts for real. About 2 1/2 years ago, Cindy told me she wanted to get the lap band surgery for weight loss. Like me, she has had a problem with weight for a long time and she was always determined to get the surgery even if she had to take out a loan to do it. I was fully ready to get behind her and support her through all of it, but I knew I couldn't afford the surgery. But I was willing do whatever she needed me to do to help her get through it. Well, a little more than a year ago, she found out her insurance would cover the surgery and she started the procedures to get qualified. One of those procedures was attending a seminar for the surgeries. Well after the seminar, she decided she wanted the sleeve instead. More importantly, she found out that my insurance covered it as well. I called my insurance and confirmed and I reserved a seat at the next seminar. After the seminar, I knew I was getting the sleeve as soon as I got fully qualified. I had to go through blood work, a class, a psych eval, and about a dozen visits with my doctor to get qualified but I did it and I finally got to my day of surgery. Almost six months ahead of Cindy, due to the difference in our insurance requirements.

It wasn't an easy road to follow, either. In that six months we started having problems and we broke up. We decided to break up before we got to the point where we were hating each other and not wanting to see each other ever again. It was hard on both of us, but it's what had to be done. Looking back now, with the experience I've had over the last 7 months, it's been better for us. I went first and I found out about all the little pitfalls and traps and things to avoid. The most important one I came across was the emotional storms. At seven months out and getting testosterone treatments, my storms are under control now. Unfortunately, Cindy is now starting to realize the power in the storms because she's dealing with them herself. Worse, all I can do is sympathize because we're not together. I can't really be there to hold her hand and help her through it. I don't think her current significant other has fully grasped the awesomely destructive capability of the emotional storms and I'm not exactly inclined to give him any advice on the subject. Let him figure that out on his own like I did. I was lucky in that I was solo on my trip so the only person I could go off on was myself. I learned to identify the storms and develop my own ways to deal with them and weather them until they pass.

But as I said, I'm seven months post op now, I'm 171 pounds lighter overall, and 148 pounds lost since the surgery. On the average, I've lost 21 pounds per month. That's completely amazing to me. That also averages to 5 pounds per week which is healthy, I think. I've lost 4 shirt sizes and 7 pants sizes. My face is really thinning out now and I look completely different. I'm within 49 pounds of my goal weight and I'm feeling really good about things right now. I will reach my goal, and more than likely sooner than I expected. When I started the journey on January 10th of this year, I would have been happy to have lost 100 pounds in six months including my preop weight loss. I'm 7 months out and I've lost far more than that. People at work are seeing me differently. Hell, people when I go out treat me differently. I'm no longer invisible, hidden by my fat. I suppose that a big part of that invisibility was shrinking into myself, keeping away from people so they wouldn't notice the fact that I was fat. The problem is I got so good at it, people just didn't see me at all. But now I'm out there, projecting myself, making myself seen. Sharing myself with the rest of the world. And why not? I'm awesome, you know (remember, your not-so-humble scribe)!

Anyway, I've rambled on enough for tonight.

Signing off now.

Do Svidanja!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Day 210: Work is back to normal (sort of)

Well, the OT is finally over (thank God) although being short of techs means that some of us are working tickets we normally wouldn't be bothered with. Oh well, such is the life of a tech.

On an NSV note, I have some more bones finally coming to the surface. In addition to my clavicles, I have shoulder bones becoming visible and my cheekbones are becoming very visible. My knuckles are also rising to the surface of my hands. My fingers have less of the pudgy sausage shape and are becoming long again. My wrists are quite a bit smaller than they were 6 months ago. I'm less than 50 pounds from my goal weight and I feel really good about things right now.

As far as my romantic life and pursuits are concerned, I'm going to try to just go with the flow right now and see what happens. I've been told so many things and I believe so many things that anything could happen, but I have to open my eyes to everything. The right one might be in my life right now, or she might be around the corner waiting for me to see her the way she's going to see me. She's the one who's going to see me and realize that she wants me in her life for the rest of it and won't want to risk me walking away forever and taking everything I can offer along with me. She's going to be the one that I'm going to be willing to die for and be willing to kill for. Of those two options, the dying is the easy one. Killing..that takes a capability for absolute ruthlessness. For most people, they just don't have the capability to take another's life without a very strong defensive motivation and even then, giving the attacker a chance to stop will cause them to hesitate for even a split second. It's hard to do, to deprive someone of life for any reason. Most people just can't do it. It's not in them, the capability has been trained out of them by society. Unless you've been specifically broken down and rebuilt psychologically to be able to kill by flipping a switch in your head, you will hesitate. Those of us that have been trained to be that way can throw that switch and never hesitate. We might question afterward and for the rest of our lives, but we can do what has to be done right then. Soldiers and Police have to be that way. We aren't that way because of what's in front of us, but because of what we left behind us. What we want to protect from all of the ugliness of war or crime. We don't go to war because we want to kill anyone. We go to war to try to keep it from getting into our country.

Sorry to deviate from the mainstream of this blog, but I felt it needed to be said.

I'm going to sign off there before I get going big time.

See y'all later.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Day 209: Monday weigh-in and anger dissipated

It's time for the Monday weigh-in: My current body weight is 249 pounds. That's a 9 pound loss for the week, 148 pounds lost since surgery, and 171 pounds lost overall. That pretty well wiped out the anger I was feeling from Saturday night. That also puts my BMI to 33.8. Still obese, but a lot closer to overweight. When you consider that when I started my journey at 420 pounds last June at a BMI of 57.0 that's a huge difference. Change for the better, definitely. I'm honestly amazed at that seeing as I didn't really work out or even walk that much last week. That also means I've lost 77 percent of my excess weight. Having passed the 250 mark means I've also reached a mini-goal. Yay, me!

Some NSV's of note from the last week:
Sitting down at the Lab and not getting grabbed by the chair in the waiting room.
My size 42 jeans fitting just a bit on the loose side.
My shoes and boots getting a little loose.

So I'm getting there and my body seems to be in a rush to get there now. It's like after 6 months of rapid weight loss, my body needed a month to reorganize and reset and now I'm losing again. As long as it comes off, that's the important thing. I hope that anger didn't have any effect on my weight loss. I'd hate to think that the anger kicked my metabolism into overdrive, but it is possible. I just can't maintain that anger safely for long. Someone would get hurt. Probably me.

Min Tian Jian!

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Day 208: Reflections on a Sunday

I had a brilliant blog written up for today, but when I went back and read through it, I realized that it had nothing whatsoever to do with my journey and was getting way too personal so I decided to trash it and cut to the chase about how someone on this journey needs to practice a bit of discipline, particularly when strong emotional states can trigger stupid or reckless behaviors. Something happened last night and I got angry and upset right as I arrived at the Revolver. I ended up drinking more than I normally would and I drank faster as well. I got blitzed pretty quickly and I was hoping that maybe it would relieve the anger, but it didn't. If anything, it ramped it up to murderous levels. If I had kept my discipline in mind and watched my drinking both in quantity and frequency, the anger might have dropped away. Instead, the extra alcohol undid my inhibitions and allowed the anger free rein. So I proceeded to get more and more pissed off as the night went along.

Now when I say I drank more than I normally would, I had three drinks as opposed to my normal two and I had them pretty much back to back instead of drinking water in between the drinks. I was buzzed and kept it that way for a long time. I got home safely and immediately hydrated myself and went to bed. Unfortunately, the anger is sticking around a bit and I don't know if that's an effect of the alcohol or if it just riled me up that badly. And this is not one of my monthly moods, either. That mood colors everything, where this is very specific and sticking around on that particular subject.

I guess it comes down to if you have something that triggers your behavior pattern, keep your eating and drinking discipline first and foremost in your mind and don't let it slip.

Auf Weidersehen!

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Day 207: Saturday!!!

Blood test done this morning, then I got the sugared up tweens to their respective mothers and I took the afternoon to clean the condo and do my laundry and I'm going out to the Revolver tonight. I also managed to get my hair cut this afternoon before I started the cleanup detail, so I'll be ready for a night out once I clean myself up and get some dinner. I'm not really hungry, but I want to get my protein in before I go out dancing. Maybe I'll get a couple of numbers tonight. Maybe more than that if I play this right!

A quick rhetorical question before I sign off for the night. Why is it when someone breaks up with us, we're usually more willing to take them back after they hurt us and betrayed our loyalty than we are willing to open up to someone else? I know that I should just walk away, let go and be done with it. But I can't. No matter what I try, my heart always goes back. There's a favorite song of mine by Chris DeBurgh called "The head and the heart" and it has a very appropriate lyric for this:

Now the dawn begins, and still I cannot sleep,
My head is spinning round but now the way is clear to me,
There is nothing left, nothing left to show,
The jury and the judge will see, it's time to let her go,
Now hear the heart,
Oh, I believe that time will show,
She will always be a part of my world,
I don't want to see her go,
So I plead my case to hear the heart,
And stay...


Friday, August 5, 2011

Day 206: Friday, Finally!

OMG, what a miserable week this has been. A total of 10 hours of overtime in 4 days. Ugh. Plus I have to get up early and go get my blood work done. NOT FUN! Not that I mind the needles or even the getting up early, it's the wasted time waiting to get my blood drawn. I hate it. But my doctor needs to see what's going on in my body, so I'll get it done. Besides, in the long run, my doctor knows me far better than the weight loss team doctors do, so I'll do what I have to to not only lose the weight, but to thrive and get better. If I hadn't been going to my doctor to get checked out, I might still be taking the iron tablets and getting sicker and sicker from iron toxicity. My doctor has been able to look at my blood work and tell me what I have to do to keep up the weight loss and maintain my muscles. I'm going to listen to him first and foremost.

Right now I really just want to curl up and go to sleep, but if I go to sleep too early, I'll wake up way too early. Damn internal clock. Plus I have to fast for the rest of the night now. Again, not fun since I'm used to taking in a tiny bit of protein right before bed and I'll have the shakes in the morning until I get some protein in my system. Another ugh. On top of that I have two hyperactive tweens playing Wii Sports Resort right now and I'm SO not in a happy place. Plus they seem intent to try to tell me about things that I have absolutely no interest in and after the week I've had, my tolerance level for foolishness is at an all-time low tonight. Ah well, the things you do for your kids.

And after the blood test I'll go home, sugar up those two kids and release them to their respective mothers. MWAHHAHAHA! Then I'll relax for a while, get cleaned up and head down to the Revolver again tomorrow night for some fun. Dancing, drinking and a little fun. Maybe a lot of fun if things go right. We'll just have to see.


Thursday, August 4, 2011

Day 205: Some days...

Just once I wish the higher ups in my company would say "[FOXTROT] the business needs, let's give the techs a break." Not only did we have to do a 12 hour shift, it was only the Las Vegas center that got screwed. The other two centers were released after 10 hours. Talk about giving preferential treatment. And they wonder why we don't believe in the team mentality. As a team everybody pulls the same load, not one third of the team pulling the load for everyone. It's bullshit.

And to add a bit of stupidity to injury, they "rewarded" us with a lunch buffet from Famous Daves BBQ. Oh joy, fatty, oversauced, overcooked meats and carb laden sides. I had one piece of brisket and didn't like it. Thanks, but no. I'll stick with my yogurt, protein powder and cashews. And while everyone else was dropping into a carb coma after lunch, I was still pushing to get tickets closed and take calls. Thanks to my healthy choice.

A serious NSV at work as well. One of the guys in a different department had to do a double take because he wasn't sure it was me, and this is someone who sees me every day. He said that the way I look changed so much in just a few days that he didn't recognize me at first. He asked how much I've lost and when I said I had lost 162 pounds his reaction was, "You lost one of me! That's amazing!" I couldn't help smiling at that.

Cindy lost another two pounds this week, and she's just 28 short pounds away from onederland. I know she wants to lose more weight faster, but as long as she loses the weight, that's the important thing. Believe me, I understand how disheartening it can be to lose very little or even none whatsoever after everything we've gone through with this surgery. That's one of the reasons we act as each other's support. Combination of cheerleader and counselor is what we do for each other. Cheer on the good days, listen and sympathize on the bad. Lean on each other when we need it, celebrate when it's deserved, and a kick in the ass when nothing else is getting through.

Well, that covers my thoughts for today. I'll be back tomorrow.

Do Svidanja!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Day 204: Too much overtime and a bit of relief

Ugh. We had a major outage today and we had to pull a 12 hour shift. Not fun. About 6 pm, my supervisor called me back to have our meeting. As I suspected, I was getting written up for a violation of policy. In this case, surfing the internet when not on break. And on Facebook, no less. I didn't argue it, didn't defend it, just said "Ok, let me sign the paper. You caught me, I'll correct it. But you know I'm not the only tech that does it. I'm just the one you caught." Truth be told, I was relieved that it really was so minor. A first level write up is something to learn from and let it correct your mistake. I refuse to lose my job for Facebook. Of course, I warned some other techs about it but I don't think they will take it seriously unless they get written up for the same thing. Well, that's their problem, not mine. I'll correct my mistake and move on.

After a 12 hour day, I'm tired as Hell. I'm going to watch a movie and then hit the sack. At least two hours OT tomorrow, possibly more if that damn outage isn't resolved.

Dewa Mata!

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Day 203: A good support group meeting

I bit the bullet and went to the meeting and it was really good. This time, it was led by Dr. Atkinson, the surgeon who performed my surgery and the meeting was really amazing. He answered so many questions and provided so much insight regarding the medical side of...everything we do in this journey. He confirmed my suspicion about the pain killers and my plateau with the weight loss. And there were so many things that he spelled out clearly that in other meetings were never really clarified. It was a really good meeting. Candace put up with it for about an hour and then she was ready to go, so I didn't get the whole meeting, but I got enough of it to make me happy. No drama, no issues, no talking behind my back, just a good meeting.

It was definitely better than most of my day was. 10 hours due to the 2 hours of overtime. Yack. Ah well, it's extra money on my paycheck and that will come in handy for my trip to Bakersfield at the beginning of September. I have lots of friends that have been asking me when I'm coming back for a visit and I'll be telling them I'll be there for Labor Day shortly. I'm definitely going to be inviting them to come visit Vegas. That's one of the reasons I keep a Guest room ready. You never know when someone could just show up for a visit.

Work...[sigh] My supervisor wanted to speak to me at the end of the day, but I didn't have time to hang around after work so she said we would talk about it tomorrow. I'm probably getting written up for some minor violation of company policy. Worst case scenario, I'm getting fired. I don't think that's the case, but the way things go you never know. I'm getting myself properly psyched either way. I'm going in expecting the worst, hoping for the best, and likely the reality will be in between the two extremes. I just hate not knowing.

I'll know tomorrow.


Monday, August 1, 2011

Day 202: Monday Weigh-in

[Blows out breath] Ok, I got up, did the necessary, and said my mantra. I stepped on the scale, and...2 pounds down. I can't tell you how happy I was to see that loss after 3 weeks of no loss. I hope this is an indication that my body is back in loss mode and I can continue down from here. My losses to date are 2 pounds for the week, 135 pounds since surgery, and 162 pounds overall.

Blogger's back to normal so I can continue my entry for today. I just found out that I have to do at least 3 days of mandatory overtime this week (2 hours per day) and possibly (probably) Friday as well, so I may not be able to go to the live support group this month. I can't say that I'm all that chuffed about missing it if I do. I know there are some talkers around there that are talking about me behind my back after the meetings because of my situation with Cindy. We broke up,but we decided to remain friends. I'll tell the truth, I want more than that, but that's no one's business but mine and Cindy's. Whether I look at her, talk to her, respond to her, that's between me and Cindy and no one else's [FOXTROT]ing business. Find someone else to watch, you drama mamas. Stay out of my business unless you want me to call you out at the meeting. Because I'll be loud and embarrass everyone in there when I do. I won't call out names, but I'll make sure that everyone knows that the list of suspects is EXTREMELY short. And if they step up and challenge me back they will find out I don't back off from a fight especially when I'm in the right. Of course, if that happens, I will NEVER go back to one of those meetings and I'll make sure to post it on the weight loss center's FB page.

We'll see.