Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Random thoughts on why I love my sleeve

Easter was a big jackpot to my self esteem this year. I am down 57 lbs as of today and I feel absolutely fantastic! This Easter I wasn't looking in my closet at all of the stuff that doesn't fit but that I would love to wear... instead I busted out with a new dress ($7 steal at TJ MAXX!) that I had been dying to wear, and felt like $1mil!

When I got to church, my aunt said that she didn't even recognize me! When I got to my Grandma's house for lunch, she just kept pointing out how much weight I have lost, and saying "Ay ya yay!" (those of you who know my Grandma know that the inflection in the ay ya yay determines what she is trying to say!), and even looked at Roger expectantly like..."I hope you see how hot she is getting!", my uncle in Cincinnati told me I look like a model (laying it on thick, but God Bless him!), and even my mother, who is not free flowing with compliments acknowledged that a) my dress was beautiful and b) I looked great! So YAY!

But this post is actually inspired by my visit to the gym tonight, and I am so inspired that although it is 10:30pm and I still have to shower and go to bed before the kids start calling in the middle of the night, I am writing this post.

Reasons I love my sleeve:

1. The most obvious reason: WEIGHT LOSS! I have shed 57lbs in not quite 4 months. Yes it has been challenging at times, but more often than not, it's fairly simple... eat slowly, and not so much!

2. The sleeve has given me a new found love for exercise. As a 245lb person, it is very hard to move. I'd go 5 minutes on the elliptical and want to die. I'd give up 15 mins in and say, "eh, I'll start another day". I'd look in the mirror and be disgusted with what I saw. And I would know that unless I was super strict on diet, my sweaty, hard, workout would do nothing for me as far as weightloss. With the sleeve, I work out moderately for 30-45 mins and I am down a pound the next morning! Talk about gratifying!!!! Also, because I have been able to drop over 50 lbs, I LIKE what I see in the mirror (for the most part!) and I am able to exert myself much more then previously. I actually look forward to Zumba, look forward to the elliptical, and I have a yearning to go to the gym, even after a long day with the kids. Never ever did I think I would say "I LIKE WORKING OUT!".

3. a) The sleeve not only transforms your body, it transforms your mind. This is a two-fold thing. The first is that my mind is now changing about myself. My self confidence is up. My enthusiasm for life is stronger. I am excited. I am generally happier as a person. All thanks to my sleeve and what is has done for me.
b) the sleeve has transformed my mind and how I view food and portion sizes. I am no longer afraid to throw food away like I used to be. I can eat something and if I know that I am full (which the sleeve will BLATANTLY tell me!) and I keep picking at it, I will just take it and throw the entire thing in the trash. Wham, done. This horrifies certain members of my family, which reinforces my food issues to begin with (and not that they are intentionally harmful ideas, it's just been passed down). How many times was I encouraged to be a part of the "clean platers club" or "don't waste that!". Well the clean platers club got me to almost 250lbs, and I am NEVER EVER going back there! I even made a comment to a family member who said how I was wasting food that "That's why we're fat". Oops, but it's true! It is important to know your true hunger levels.

4. And on that note, my sleeve has made me stop and identify "head hunger" or careless eating. I now focus on everything I eat. No, not all of it is good for me still, but I have a constant monitor about how much protein I am consuming and if I am drinking water, etc. Before, I didn't give a hollyhey about how many carbs I was consuming.... I thought Atkins was for the birds. Well folks, it sucks, but it WORKS! And thanks to my sleeve, I can stick with the plan to the best of my ability because I feel FULL, and I see RESULTS!!!

5. My sleeve gave me my relationship back. Granted, we have had some major issues the past years, both my fault and his, but a big chunk of our issues stemmed from me being overweight and unhappy with myself. How can you be a happy mom or partner when you hate how you look and feel each day? Each day I lose more weight and gain wattage to my smile... I have a whole new lease on life and on my little family. So much so that we are tying the knot July 30, 2011.

I am sure that I can think of 100 other reasons of why I am so glad and grateful that I was able to have my surgery. I am part of online groups of other weight loss surgery survivors who feel the same as me, and I would STRONGLY encourage anyone who has a BMI over 40 to look into it. There are so many things we struggle with in life, why not take one off the list and alleviate the fight against genetics and food addiction if we can?? Roger said it best when he mentioned that medical science is a real life "miracle". God has created tools for us to USE! Don't fear the unknown, embrace it, and that's exactly what I am doing. Embracing this new, thin, fantastic life that I am so lucky to have. :)

Can you tell I am really frickin HAPPY tonight?!!!!!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

The busiest unemployment ever!

Whew! It has been awhile since I have been on here I tell ya. Not sure if I announced that I am no longer at the Hilton, but I am not, and it feels amazing! I am a full time mom to Mr. Benjamin, and Miss Aidan is in school full time, which really is for the best. I haven't mastered watching both kids at the same time every day so in order to ensure that she is stimulated and entertained and I am sane, we decided to keep her in school.

Now mind you, it's been about 3 weeks since my last day there and I have been so busy with kids, NACE, and wedding planning that the time has just flown right by! I promised myself I wouldn't talk about wedding stuff in this post, so pretend I didn't say that... that is its own post later on :) I also promised myself to post some pictures since blogs are way more interesting that way. So... let's start with this one: This handsome little man is my companion these days. He is too cute for words, and doesn't say too many that most people understand (including his dad!) but I speak his language and am so happy that I get plenty of one on one time with him now. I was home with Aidan at this age and got to enjoy her, so it is nice to have a chance with Benji. He is definitely a mama's boy, but he does get super excited when Daddy comes home for the day.

We have also been spending massive amounts of time with his "Nina" (godmother), my auntie Bev. She was watching him full time when I was working, and so we visit her multiple times a week. He calls her "mama" also which I think is an ode to "Grandma" but I am Mommy, she is Mama and he loves with when he can have both of us! Here they are at Panera (he was crazy this trip!) but in general he knows Mama means business (way more than Mommy does :P)

Speaking of Miss Aidan, she is as stubborn as they come and I now feel my mother's pain when I was growing up. From what I understand she is just Alexis #2! AHHHHH! Somebody save me! In all seriousness, she is absolutely brilliant and so creative! She loves to draw, read, write, and pretend. But a few things we have let go far too long and we finally got our butts in gear. Case in point: pacifiers. Aidan had her pacifier at home and at night up until last week. Ridiculous, right? YES! There is absolutely NO REASON for a 3.5yr old to have a pacifier. And the fact that she was calling for us in the night to say 'I can't find my "bobo"!" is even MORE ridiculous! OMG. I finally had enough and she is now bobo free! WOOHOO!

The second case in point is this one... this is a picture of Aidan, kicking back at Tina's house on a Sunday afternoon..... IN HER DIAPER! Yes, my 3.5 yr old still wears diapers. Now, I wouldn't feel so bad about this if I knew that she "wasn't ready yet". But Aidan will ask me "Mommy, do you have the wipes?" meaning: I know you need wipes because I have to take a dump but I will just hold it till we get home if you don't have them with you. Say WHAT?!!! She holds her pee and poop accordingly and can certainly be potty trained. She is just extremely stubborn.

Well Mom and Dad got a wake up call. She has been having some issues at school with regression because she is so much older than all of the new kids in her class (most just turned 2). All of her friends are potty trained and have since been moved up a class but Aidan refuses. I think there are a few issues. 1. She is VERY attached to the 2 lovely teachers in her class. They are her absolute favorites so she doesn't want to move up. 2. she doesn't want to be potty trained because she is stubborn and/or lazy. Both I think. But the director of the school basically told us that she needs to be potty trained by June to stay in the school. At this point Aidan is choosing not to be and we need to make that decision for her. I agree 100%. She NEEDS to be potty trained. This is getting ridiculous!

Now another thing we are dealing with at age 3.5 is the need to pick out her own outfits and shoes, and just be consistently independent. My only issue with this is that if it was up to Aidan, she would be wearing party dresses and princess shoes EVERY DAY. I have to force her to wear play clothes and sneakers to school. She gets up, and if I don't catch her fast enough, she is all dressed by herself (thumbs up!) but in a fancy dress and Lord knows what else (thumbs down!). So we go through the routine every morning of me explaining the weather and what is appropriate to wear. Now, even when we are just home, she insists on about 3-4 wardrobe changes in an evening. I have washed her Easter dress about 10x. It was intended to be worn once or maybe twice, so at least I can't complain about it not getting good use, but geez!

The other day I was upset with the way the day was going and came upstairs to our loft/computer area and was on here looking at the www.shitmykidsruined.com website. Just to cheer myself up, giggle, turn my frown upside down. I had told myself that if she got into something, oh well, I would die if I didn't ignore because all day was a battle about this or that. She comes upstairs and says something to me and I turn and see this: This is Aidan, all decked out in her 2010 easter dress (a size too small) with an ENTIRE pack of tortillas. She was eating them all together like a sandwich! I had to laugh! And oh the irony of what I was reading at the time!!!!

So aside from the woes of the terrible threes, Mr. Almost 2 and I have been keeping busy as best as we can and in line with my desperate need to be a thin and gorgeous bride, have been as active as possible! I have started to FINALLY take advantage of having an amazing trail at the end of our culdesac (about 20 yards from my front door) that is ON THE SAN FRANCISCO BAY. Yeah, I know, lucky right???? Super lucky and I am a fool for not enjoying this more before. So, Benji and I will go for walks and check out the birds, the stream, the airplanes that go by. He loves it!

Ididn't say we get dressed for the occastion! Here was his outfit this morning :P Pajamas with a fleece, some crocs, and his sister's princess sippy! But he is handsome in whatever he wears! Now for some reason lately he has been making me carry him for the majority of the walk which I suppose is ok, but I'd like him to get some exercise in too. So, here we are, him going for a ride, me for a walk:

I also have rekindled my love affair with Zumba! My cousin Angie was staying with my aunt in Oakland and she and I made Zumba dates! It was great to meet someone for the class and hold myself accountable. Needless to say, last week was a flop, but I fully intend to keep up with exercising and the amazing thing is that with the sleeve, my body doesn't require massive amounts of exercise to lose weight!!! Literally 30 moderate minutes a day helps me shed a pound. Freaking AMAZING!!!! I am down approx 10lbs since I lost my job, which again makes me happy to not be at the Hilton!

It also makes me nervous about wedding dress alterations but again... no wedding tidbits quite yet ; )