(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
- 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...