Please note : On some browsers I believe "ads" are popping up over my blog description for Lap Band Surgery . Or where to get lap band surgery , I IN NO WAY SHAPE OR FORM have ANYTHING TO DO WITH THIS .. And I STRONGLY DISCOURAGE LAP BAND SURGERY .

About Me

My name is Mindy and I am a wife and mother of 2 boys, Ages 20 and 12. I recently started on the path of becoming a nurse something i have wanted to do since i was 11 !

Blog Archive

Friday, September 19, 2014

Ya Gotta WORK !

Its been about 4 months since my sleeve to bypass surgery . While it seems like a long long time ago it really has not been that long. I have learned a few things along the way , from this surgery and my others.
First the #1 question I get asked is " Since you have had the lap band, sleeve and now RNY which surgery is best and which is best for me " . While surgery and which surgery to get is a totally personal choice I can say this to people .. First off NEVER GET THE LAP BAND ( I dont like to tell people what NOT to do but this is one i will stand by . DO NOT GET THE BAND ! ) Second off its hard for me to answer this question as to what I like the best. The lap band was "easy" the weight came off with no effort on my part. We all know now the damage it caused so "easy " is not a word I would contiune to use with it . The sleeve .. did i like it ? That is hard to answer also . I will say this , IF I had the sleeve FIRST I think I would have liked it . Its hard for me to tell you if the sleeve is "good or worked" because it never really worked the way it should have for me due to damage from my band. Now how do I like Bypass ? I like it . Its probably as "Normal" as I have felt in a long long time , there is no pain when eating, no joint aches or muscles aches , no vomitting , no getting stuck no throwing up . That being said, it is hard for me to say if bypass would have worked the same for me if i had it the second time or even the first time around. Of the 3 surgeries I am happiest at this point with the bypass.

NOW my progress... Weight loss wise its been slow. REAL Slow.  Its been about 35-40 pounds total so far since my sleeve to bypass. I am currently 183 and my docs office states I was 190 when I had surgery but that's not right I had gained some weight between my surgery and the pre op visit.  Now I have lost WAY more inches than pounds. I was in size 18/20 when i had surgery and am currently in a 12-14 depending on the brand. I just started taking my measurments. Another big change is ..

I am working out !! That's right , Mrs I hate to work out , dont like it never did it . I joined the Y last month and go 3-4 times a week , I actually half way ENJOY it ! Did you faint ?

I have been going to body pump , body combat and cardio funk classes ! I will even go and walk on the treadmill BEFORE a class ! ( did you faint again ? LOL) 
Even with the working out I am not loosing as much as I would like. I have a goal to have 25 pounds lost before Christmas. I would like to have ALL of the 40 or so pounds that i have left off before my one year anniversary .  If I get there I get there, but I know I am doing EVERYTHING I can to help myself. I feel better than I have in years now . I eat better and am enjoying myself for the first time in a long time ! So the moral of the story ? Who ever says weight loss surgery is the "Easy " way out has not seen my big ass at the gym working out ! Its ROUGH and HARD . I would have LOVED to have taken the "easy way out " instead of this way !! 

Here is a current picture of me. I had to take it to "See" the changes, while they are small I see them . 

Saturday, August 9, 2014


Its been about 12 weeks since my revision and things are going pretty good. I have finally got my energy back for the most part it took quite a while for it to come back . I have made some more changes other than just surgery . While i was out on disability for my surgery I decided to look for a new job. When I was dreading having to go back , not to work but to the place I worked I decided to take the time to apply for a few other jobs. As it turns out I got one ! I am now working at an allergy clinic and Love it . The hospital was part of what was draining me so physically and I just could not see going back to that .

Because of my new hours at work I have the time and energy to walk now. I walk almost every night. Something I have never been good at sticking to . But I have been doing well for about 3 weeks now . I walk at least 6 days a week . Which is good for me and its been REALLY hot lately .
I have had some people ask me how this surgery compares to the other surgeries.

As far as how I feel and how i eat now, I have more restriction now after my RNY than almost any other surgery . I have only thrown up a few times and mostly from eating bad food ( really dry usually) which is a huge change from the lap band and the sleeve I could eat nearly anything in any amount .

Over all I feel REALLY Good. There is one thing that is really annoying and while I hate to put it out there for everyone to read .. its something I think surgery patients or people considering revisions should know goes on. Due to the malabsorbtion issues I have with the surgery I have chronic loose BM's . Its embarrassing and some times too much for me to deal with . I spoke to my doc about it a little bit and he said it was not "normal" but consequential of how I eat now . I will contact my NUT next week to talk to him more about it . I have started taking a probiotic to see if that helps .

So over all I feel good . I am down 31 pounds at this point and down from a 18/20 pant size to a 14 and they are getting a little loose. Also down from a XXL shirt to a Large Shirt .
Sometimes I do not see the difference and its hard for me to believe people when they say I look good or that they can tell I have lost weight .. I think because everyone know's i had surgery they are just saying it to be nice ! That's just me .

What do I still need to work on ? I want to start doing some yoga to tone up . Also eating better. I do not eat bad , however we have started a bad habit of eating out . While i eat healthy when I eat out I don't know what i am putting in my body . My B1 levels were low as were my B12 So I need to be able to get in the vitamins and calories I need and know what I am eating ! So that's the goal this month to eat at home more and try some yoga !!

Sunday, July 6, 2014

A Milestone of Sorts

Its been a little over a month since my surgery . The weight has been coming off fairly easily at this point and restriction when eating is good . While everything is going well I am still waiting for the other shoe to drop. Something to go wrong, the weight to stall , something. I mean really do you blame me after all the crap I have been through . 
Today however I hit a milestone of sorts. I am officially lighter than I was with my sleeve.
With my sleeve I could NEVER get  under 189-190 pounds . I would see saw between those 2 weights for months , months turned into a year . I lost 40 lbs with my sleeve but only 10 pounds came off after the first 30 days . So I am gun shy still about the weight loss.
But today at 6 weeks post op I hit 188 pounds . Which means I am lighter than I was ever with my sleeve , granted I was 10 pounds lighter to begin with but still its something ! 
Once I get below 180 I think i will feel like this is really working ! 

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

One Month Post op

Its been a little over a month since my surgery . I am down 25 lbs so far. The pain from surgery is gone and the only side affect I have lingering is fatigue. I am still very very tired , and get very tired easily .  I go back to work to a new job next week . I decided to leave the hospital job I was working at . It was very stressful and not to mention very physical . I cant imagine having to do that job 12 hours a day in the near future with the energy level I currently have. So I am excited to start my new job . 

The supplements I have to take are difficult for me to get down . Because i have issues with taking anything with artificial sweeteners in them ( I get horrible migraines ) I found some supplements that are all vegan , all natural blah blah , but i have to break them open to take them and oh my do they not set well . I am going to try one more kind to see if i can try them , but if that does not work i may need to get IV infusions of my supplements. With Gastric Bypass supplements are really really important. You can crash and get really sick really fast if your levels drop quickly. 
So its something i need to stay on top of . 

Over all things are going well. I am really happy with the amount of restriction i have post op this time around. After my sleeve surgery I never felt like I had any restriction , or stopping point after eating, even early on post op . But I can not eat much at this point and I am very full. So I am very happy with that ! 

Sunday, June 15, 2014

16 days Post op and 21 Pounds Down

Just wanted to give a little update on how things are going . I am steadily loosing a pound or 2 a day. Which is fine with me, I know that will slow down once I start to eat regular food.
Energy level is slowly getting back up to normal but I still end up having to take a nap almost everyday . I have also had some issues with sleeping since surgery . Hoping that gets better.

This go around has been a little harder as far as the full liquid stage . I wont lie.  Because of my migraines and issues with artificial sweeteners I have only found one protein drink that does not give me a migraine and I cant even have that one more than once a day .
Because of the artificial sweeteners bothering me I have to usually dilute full sugar items. For instance I drink 20 oz of water with 1 tablespoon of juice . That much does not bother me.
Sugar free jello and sugar free pudding are out , so I can only have a small amount of each at at a time Too much and i get sick to my stomach and feel nauseated . ( Dumping Syndrome) The dumping is a BIG issue for bypass and something I knew I would have because i dumped with my sleeve.
So I feel like i stay nauseated most of the day , I know that will get better when i can have more foods. I see the doc on Tuesday so he should move me up .
The GOOD thing about this surgery is I really am not hungry . I Just in the last day or so started to feel hunger and it will usually go away after drinking some more water.

I have to take my antibiotics with applesauce, ( Technically a mushy food ) and 2 or 3 bites and i can FEEL It going down or myself getting full . So I feel hopeful that is a good sign of the restriction to come.

So over all things are going well . Just anxious to move on to pureed foods so i can have some butternut squash or re fried beans !

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

My story: Lapband, To sleeve To Bypass Revsions

 PLEASE NOTE : I am still working on this post ,, Excuse the choppiness of it ! Still working on adding details ! 

I have had several people over the last week ask me what my "whole story was " for all my surgeries , why i needed one after having another etc. So I'll try to keep it short and put it in all one page so here goes :

The beginning :
As a young adult i was 130-150 pds .
My weight issues started about 15 yrs ago when I got married , became a stay at home mom and got pregnant the same YEAR !! Not a real good combo for someone's weight.
When i got married in 2000 i was about 140-150 pds. More than I had ever weight in my life.
In 2001 i became pregnant w/ my second son and my weight just came on and on and on ( I GOT HUGE ) . After I had him , the weight did not come off. Would not come off.
I'll be honest though I did not and have not tried every diet under the sun.
I tried Atkins , I tried weight watchers , working out a curves and eating better over the last 7 or so yrs. So did i try EVERYTHING ? Probably not .
I also have something called PCOS ( Poly Cycstic Ovarian Syndrome)
Here is the definition from Wikepedia
Polycystic ovary syndrome abbreviated PCOS or PCO (also known clinically as Stein-Leventhal syndrome, Sclerocystic ovary syndrome, Hyperthecosis, ovarian, Polycystic ovarian disease PCOD ) is an endocrine disorder that affects approximately 10% of all women .[1] It occurs amongst all races and nationalities, is the most common hormonal disorder among women of reproductive age, and is a leading cause of infertility.[2][3] The principal features are weight problems, lack of regular ovulation and/or menstruation, and excessive amounts or effects of androgenic (masculinizing) hormones. The symptoms and severity of the syndrome vary greatly between women. While the causes are unknown, insulin resistance, diabetes and obesity are all strongly correlated with PCOS.

It became very obvious to me that my weight was not going to come off. Over about 7 yrs I lost 25 pds and that was IT !! So I gave up . I wont lie I did !

The Band ( Starting Weight 250 if not more Goal weight of 125 lbs hit in 10 months  )
In 2004 I started researching WLS with the encouragement of my long time OBGYN. At the time the Lap Band was " THE" Surgery to have , it was being sold as least invasive , blah blah . So i deiced I would check into it . At this time the longest anyone had the band I think was maybe 5 yrs ? So in talking to people who had the band for a while 1-2 yrs out it looked great ! People kept the weight off, no one really had anything bad to say about it , including my doc .
In 2006 I decied to take the blunge and get banded and was banded in July of 2007
Here is a link to my one year mark with my band ( oh if i had only known what was to come ) .

The day I hit my goal weight with my lap band I slipped my band for the first time .
That is where the end of the band began. Nothing really ever was right after that . I slipped my band again in July of 2009 !
As this stuff was going on I started to have some other funky things going on with my health . Those are all located here under Auto Immune if you would like to read up on them .
For the record I beleieve these issues I had were mostly if not all band related !
Now the kind of short story at this point is, my band was unfilled for nearly 2 yrs. My band got to the point where it could not be filled with out strangling my esophagus , I got to where i could not eat anything but mushy foods . You can read more about that here .

So my over view of the band now , looking back , Its an evil contraption that needs to be taken off the market ! They have a 50-60% Failure rate and have no business being in peoples bodies ! PERIOD

The Struggle to Remove the Band
At the time my band failed me and I knew I had to get it out we were self employed and in no way able to afford the removal of my band and revision to sleeve out of pocket . My only option after checking into it was to get pre existing insurance coverage through the government. I still had to pay over $500 a month ( I think it was ) for JUST ME being covered plus 20% . Long story short I ended up having a fund raiser and raised most of the money .

The Sleeve( SW 225 Lightest weight 190 )

I had a HORRIBLE experience with my first revision surgeron , he was ok but his office staff literally gave me panic attacks by just talking to them on the phone !
This guy was suppose to be " the best revision doc around " which by the way was 4 hours from my house . (Horrible doc experience )
I have been in the medical field for many years. After asking some of my nurse friends who had a good rep in the OR , who had good technique and who THEY would trust to do their surgery I found my awesome doc Dr Fass !!
The surgery it self was good but I had a few issues . Over all the recovery from band to sleeve revision was decent, harder than the band but doable . My story of my 5 days in the hospital post revision can be read here !

ANOTHER Revision ? You are kidding right ? (SW 215 Current Weight 205 )
At about my one year anniversary I started to feel like I was able to eat a ton of food . My doc thought I was being a little over paranoid so he suggested I get an upper GI . Turned out my sleeve was too larger and I needed or could have it revised .
That story is here !

My Last Revision and the roughest !

With a second hiatial hernia repair and the bypass my surgery , this last one was probably the toughest , I am still recovering from it .

5 Days Post op 

So that is the basic of all my issues, I will fill in when I feel like it , but feel free to ask me any questions !

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Reality: 5 Days Post op

I am 5 days post op from my sleeve to bypass revision . ( If your keeping track this is my second revision ) 
I am having one of those , what have i done to myself moments/days . All day I have been uncomfortable , severe back pain , one minute my feet are cold , the next my arms are cold but feet are hot, the next I am freezing all over , EVERYTHING requires so much effort .  This surgery has by far been the most rough . The bypass itself on top of a hiatial hernia repair is ROUGH . It requires 2 pillows behind me ( one being a body pillow ) one under my legs, one on each side of me to just sit or sleep ! I go in to sleep and am almost asleep and hubs  starts snoring ! UGH. He's done so much for me i dont have the heart to kick him or elbow him in  the ribs like i normally do . So one by one I bring all my pillows out to the couch ( that's all I can carry ) and situate myself out here , and cry ! 
This is one of those surgeries that after your third like mine I feel like people probably do not have 
alot of sympathy for me , probably for good reason , frankly I dont care, it does not take the pain 
and soreness away from me !

What is the point of this ? Well for one I need to get this out because crying hurts like HELL right now . The second point is after leaving several  " revision support groups today " I want to say this.
I am on my third weight loss surgery , not by choice but my necessity, to live a longer, healthier life.
That being said With the help of my docs EACH time EACH Surgery I made what we thought was the best choice for me . I do not think NO ONE SURGERY is THE answer for EVERYONE.
If I hear " why didnt you do this surgery , why didnt you do this is the "GOLD STANDARD" Its THE Surgery , you wont have to have another. First let me tell you SHUT THE HELL UP ! ( To me espicially ) The "Gold Standard" 15 yrs ago was bypass, the "gold standard" 10 yrs ago was the band your GOLD Standard is what you think is the best surgery for YOU .. So dont give me or anyone else any SHIT about questioning what surgery I had or why I did not pick YOUR Gold Standard.
That being said I firmly believe everyone should be educated about ALL surgeries , they should choose with THEIR Doc what is best for them ! Do NOT QUESTION ANYONE ABOUT THEIR choice , honestly its like asking someone " OMG why did you name your kid THAT name " its THAT PERSONAL ! Leave your opinions to your self, if you want to know info , gain insight anything like that FEEL FREE , contact me ! Im over the  " Why didnt you choose this surgery " .

People need to know reality , People need to know not EVERYONE Is able to go back to work in 3 days ( which BTW people who say that I think are full of shit ) . People need to know THIS HURTS
just as much as they need to know the good parts . I'll write to you about the good parts when I get to them , im still at the I hate my life dont screw with me stage !! LOL