Monday, December 20, 2010

What to Expect

I have some lingering concerns about how life will be post-operation. At this point, it's just time to take the plunge and figure it all out as I go along. But it is a little stressful, wondering, wondering, wondering...

- I have a big appetite. With the VSG, I have learned, "The sleeve gastrectomy and hunger is quite interesting because the sleeve gastrectomy works, in one of its mechanisms, by removing a hormone named ghrelin, which is produced in that portion of the stomach, which is removed and sent to the pathologist. So, initially we know that the hunger is eliminated because that hormone is eliminated, but with time, we notice that patients re-develop hunger." That quote is taken from this site, but it is consistent with what I've read and heard from my own surgeon. I just needed a nice sound byte. :)
  • Will my hunger go away with the surgery? A woman in my WLS support group said that two months post-op, she needs to remind herself to eat. If she doesn't, she crashes, but she doesn't feel hungry. She's done better since getting on a routine of meals and snacks throughout the day, even relying on an alarm to remind herself. She had the same procedure I'm hoping for by my same surgeon, so it's interesting to hear her feedback. On a happy note, she has lost 50 pounds since the surgery!! The last time (the only time, actually) I saw her was two weeks before her surgery - I barely recognized her at the support group this weekend, and had to wait until after she introduced herself to the group to make sure it was her. :)
  • What will I do without food? I will have to be very careful to avoid cross-addictions. I don't know what particular addictions I'm worried about, really. I'm not much of a drinker and I'm not likely to turn to drugs, haha. But I do worry about how I'll spend my free time without food! Will I be rattling around restlessly?
  • How will it feel to have energy? Will weight loss give me energy? I confess, I'm a terrible slug. I am feeling much better with my iron IV supplements and the vitamin D mega-dosing. However, given my druthers, I pretty much just veg out. For instance, I am the slowest housekeeper in the free world. It will take me literally all weekend to clean my tiny condo, and generally I don't even remotely finish it. How much of this is obesity, and how much is just I'm-a-lazy-sloth-and-that's-why-I'm-obese?? The causation versus correlation argument can drive me insane in this regard. Which came first, the chicken or the egg?
  • How long until things stop hurting? My feet have really been hurting this fall. Not just hurting like they used to hurt when I do yoga. Not just hurting like while I'm walking. We're on to full, long-lasting foot hurt. I want this to stop!! Yesterday, I took my 11 year old daughter downtown Seattle. We had a blast! We walked and shopped and finally saw a concert and had dinner at a yummy dinner theater. What a great day! And oh. my. goodness. did my feet ever hurt. They are still very sore today.
  • What if I change my body, but not myself?? I confess, I am very disappointed in myself in my pre-surgery behavior. I am not only not losing weight, I am gaining weight. Yes, it's the holidays, and yes, I did quit smoking NINE WEEKS AGO (yay!!) as my pre-surgery gift and commitment to myself. But I am feeling more physically uncomfortable than ever as I lead up to my surgery.

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