Thursday, September 27, 2012

Ho-ly Crap.

So. Much. Information.

(and a surgery date, but we'll get to that in a second.)

I was feeling seriously anxious before I met The Hubs at the doctor's office. Laura Belle's comment and an urgent Facebook message to my banded friend who used to work at this doctor's office helped enough that I was able to keep myself from refusing to walk in the door. I really don't know what it was, but I was just so stressed out about everything.

As per usual, the things you blow up in your head to be a big deal are not big deals in reality.

I walked in, signed a few pieces of paper (HIPAA, etc.), handed them my debit card for the $350 "Program Fee", and waited. I had originally been told that I would be meeting with the counselor for the psych eval first, but I ended up meeting with one of the nurses first. The thing that I LOVE about this office is that, with the exception of ONE front desk receptionist and the surgeon, every single person who works there is banded. They have been through the pre-op diet, the surgery, and are now living with the band. And they are all SO NICE and willing to share their experiences and answer any questions. Love them.

Anyway, she took my height (5' 5.5") and weight (270.0 lb), and tried to take my blood pressure, but the new fancy fandangled blood pressure cuff they had just bought wasn't working. So I told her that my blood pressure at a doctor's appointment last week was 107/70, and that's what she wrote down. Oh, and she also measured my neck. At that office, if your neck measures more than 17 inches, they automatically require you to do a sleep study. Luckily, my neck was well under, at 14 inches.

She explained stuff I already knew about the band (basically Lap Band 101), and also went over the pre- and post-op diets. I'll cover those more in another post, but Holy Jeebus in Heaven, I get to eat veggies! I never thought I'd be so happy to see the word "salad" in my life. LOL

Next was the psych evaluation with the counselor. Maybe it's the nature of her job or something, but she was definitely not as warm and friendly as the other ladies. She was fine, though. She asked me about stresses in my life (um, hello? What's NOT stressful?) and about my support system. She kind of jumped on me about my relationship with The Hubs and whether or not I thought he would handle my weight loss and subsequent attention from men well. This is something that he and I have already discussed at length, and I feel 100% confident that he and I will be fine, but it didn't seem like she believed me. Later in the discussion, I found out that after her band and weight loss, she divorced her husband and married a new guy, so maybe she is biased in this area? I don't know.

She also talked about how friendships can change, and how if you have overweight friends they can sometimes not be super supportive because they are jealous or wish it was them losing the weight. They can feel 'abandoned' once you start losing weight, etc. And another thing she mentioned (which I hadn't thought about) was how even if you have skinny friends, sometimes they can become uncomfortable with your weight loss because you are getting closer to THEIR weight. Wowza. The human mind is amazing. I love my friends dearly and am not doing this in any way related to them. I hope all of my friendships survive through this process, because I truly love and need the people who are in my life.

After the counselor, we met with the surgeon. He is actually pretty awesome. Very friendly, down to earth. Not at all a cocky, I-don't-have-time-for-this-nonsense kind of guy. He spent a good 20-30 minutes with us discussing the technical aspect of the surgery and answering all of my random questions. He was also very positive about the possibility of pregnancy after the band and said, "Oh, yeah! We have had A LOT of 'band babies!'" LOL

Then, after the surgeon, we met with the lady who deals with the financial portion and the scheduling. I had actually talked to her several times before today, asking her questions and having her double check that my insurance would not cover the surgery. She (like everyone else) was incredibly awesome. Friendly, warm, funny, and knew what she was doing. We talked about all of the financial information, pre-op tests and such that I'll have to do, and the other appointments I'll have to make.

Then, we scheduled my surgery.

I have a surgery date. For the Lap Band.


November 7th. Forty-one short days from now, I'll be banded. How freaking surreal.

Luckily, there's a litany of other things that I have to do between now and then to keep me occupied:

  • Make appointment with PCP for pre-op physical
  • Bloodwork
  • EKG
  • Fitness Consult
  • Nutrition Consult
  • Pre-Op appointment to sign paperwork
Oy vey. So much stuff. 

I am just really having a hard time registering that this is all really happening. I'm still a little scared, but now at least I'm getting excited, too. I'm gonna be a bandster! Woot! 

Got any advice for me? I'm kinda taking all I can get...

Consult Day

Well, here it is. Consult Day.

I am scared as hell.

I really don't know why I'm so nervous. I don't think there's really anything rational to be afraid of today, but for some reason, I'm shaking in my boots. (Well, not really, I can't fit boots over my fat calves. But I'm shaking in my Fashion Bug flats, fo sho.)

I also found out on Monday when they called to confirm that the Program Fee is $350 instead of $300. I was convinced they had told me $300, but The Hubs seems to think I told him $350 at some point, so whatever. $50 is not a deal breaker here, and anything I pay now comes off the surgery cost, so that's $50 I don't have to pay later. Oh well.

I think it's just the reality of everything that is hitting me right now. This is the farthest down this path I have ever traveled. After today, I am monetarily invested in actually going through with this. If I don't have the surgery, we're out $350 now, which is A LOT of money to us. I feel like I'm hitting the point of no return, and even though I know that I want to do this, and I've wanted to do this for YEARS, now it's real. Now it's scary.

What if I go though all this, spend all this money, have SURGERY, and still fail?

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Uno Week-o

(I did not take Spanish lessons, why do you ask?)

So. One week until my consult! I am super duper excited to get it over with and get this process rollin', rollin', rollin'.

After much dilly dallying and indecisiveness (on his part, not mine) The Hubs has decided to come with me to the consult. It's not that he doesn't support the surgery or anything, I just think he couldn't decide whether it was worth missing 3 hours of work (read: money) to go. He finally relented, saying, "Well, I guess I'll go, because if I end up having this surgery in the future, it will help." Okey dokey, kiddo. See you there.

So the way they do this is by bringing me in for one $300, 3 hour session of meetings with the Surgeon, bariatric nurse, and the psychiatrist. Apparently, The Hubs is allowed to join me for everything but that last part. Wouldn't want him helping me pass that, I guess. Although, I don't think he would be much help. LOL

Then, I guess if I get the go-ahead from everyone, they tell me what my pre-op tests are and schedule me for my nutrition consult and my fitness consult, which I'm hoping that they offer at better times, because I have, like, NO MORE days off work, and the days I do have, I'm going to need for recovery.

Oh, and if you were wondering, the $300 is a "Program Fee", which is common (at least around here) for bariatric surgery programs. Basically, it's $300 for the surgery, nutrition and fitness consults and it's non-refundable. However, if I do go through with the surgery, the $300 is taken off the final cost, bringing it down to $9,600.

So I'm gathering up my last minute questions and trying to think of anything that I haven't thought of. And waiting very impatiently for time to pass.

Hopefully, it will be here before I know it, and I'll have a definite plan in place that will take me to Bandsterhood!

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Nothing to see here...

Not much going on to update you on, but I'm trying to stay on the blogging bandwagon, so that means you get pointless posts like this one.

  • The Hubs and I are going with The BFF and her husband to the Ohio Renaissance Festival this weekend. It's always a turkey leg eating, ancient weapon throwing, knightly jousting good time. 
  • My kid is adorable. That is all. 
  • My job sucks. 
  • I'm finishing up my first term at Western Governor's University this month. I still have one stupid math class that I have to complete by the 25th. Have I mentioned that I hate math?
  • Nothing much new on the Lap Band front. I'm waiting (im)patiently for my consult on the 27th. Two weeks away, people! 

I hope you're all doing well out there! Hugs to you. 

Friday, September 7, 2012

Cautious Optimism

I think I've mentioned before that I am generally a very optimistic person. I have bouts of negativity, sometimes suffer with depression, and can even sometimes be (gasp!) dramatic. But on the whole, I really do see people and life as generally good.

In the post I linked to above, I had been going through a dark time and got really bad news. The Hubs and I had finally, FINALLY decided to move forward with my Lap Band surgery, only to find out that financing was not an option for us. (I'm pretty sure the computer laughed at me when I hit submit on the application...)

After that, I really did consider Lap Band an un-option. Insurance doesn't cover it, we don't have that kind of money in our savings account, and a personal loan from our banks was not a credible possibility. I just kind of gave up and wallowed in self pity for a while. Of course, my weight LOVES it when I wallow in self pity, because that usually means wallowing in comfort food, carbs, sweets, and anything else that temporarily can't let me down. And thus, I'm hovering between 269-271 right now. Re-donk-u-lous.

However, other, good things started happening, too. We paid off both of our cars. We paid down/off all of our credit cards. We started putting money in savings. And really, it wasn't that either of us got awesomely paying jobs or had any rich relatives die or anything. We just changed our priorities and paid more attention. ( there a lesson in that somewhere?)

All this is to say that a few weeks ago, sort of on a whim, I cringed as I hit that submit button again. And then I gasped in shock when I saw that we were approved for almost the entire amount of the cost of Lap Band surgery.

Of course, the journey is just now starting and there are many things that still have to be done before I can officially say that I have a surgery date. But my consultation with the bariatric nurse, surgeon and psych evaluation is scheduled for September 27th. The ball is rolling, people. And that makes me very optimistic!

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Well, well, well...

Hey there! Remember me? I'm that funny, lovable weight-loss blogger that never loses any weight and rarely blogs...


Yeah, I can't believe I haven't posted since April either. I owe you an Instagram post about the last day of my birthday vacation that I took six months ago. I owe you an update post about life. I owe you a post about weight loss. (Spoiler alert: there hasn't been any. Surprise!)

But for now, as retribution for my blogging sins, I'll just say "Hey everybody, I've missed you!" and leave you with this:

Bubs at 20 months. Swoon.