Wednesday, 30 January 2008

Not a good day

I am not having a good day. Various family issues mean I've been dying for some "comfort food" - and even tho I can't eat it, I've been trying to eat it. I don't know why I feel so desperate for food, head hunger is killing me.

And I've got quite a pain in my chest from where my hiatus hernia was stitched up - which probably isn't helped by the vomitting.

Bundle of fun today, amn't I?

Monday, 28 January 2008

Head Hunger

Head hunger has been making me miserable (and sick) today. I don't know why. I just feel starved of food. I feel like I'd willingly pay the money back, just to be able to eat a kebab. . a chicken salad. . . a roast dinner. . cheese on toast. . chilli con carne, etc etc etc.

I am not hungry starving, no tummy rumbles, don't feel weak or dizzy; I am not hungry, I just want food.

Tough, I can't have any.

Just as well my body is restricted, cos my brain would have given up by now. This is worse than the Cambridge Diet, cos I can't cheat. And every meal time that comes round (or snack time or break time or time to watch a favourite TV show or time to relax or time to get stressed - you get the idea) I want to eat food. Not just chocolate (gone of it pretty much), but proper fooooooooooooooooood. Christmas Dinner type food; brussels sprouts and all. Fillet steak; poached salmon, asparagus, rhubarb crumble with custard.

LOL I do sound pathetic don't I? Just being honest.

I need to drink more water; I need to check my salt intake (cos it's savoury food I'm craving) and I do need at some point to work on doing exercise.

But right now I'd love to go out for an Indian meal . . . . ooh, I'm just torturing myself. I can't eat food. Except soft cheese and crackerbread (and I'm beginning to hope they are withdrawn from the market following proof that they are bad for us!)

Thanks for reading, Any one else ever felt like this?

What I ate yesterday

One cup of slim a soup for breakfast.

Tried at lunchtime to eat some Sunday dinner liquidised, but that didn't work. Settled for trying to eat some potatoes mashed up with lots of gravy, but that didn't work either.

Ate a bar of Fry's chocolate cream in disgust (that stayed down) and later had a glass of orange and mango smoothie (not home made, and quite calorific, but it is easy to drink, and has to be good for me)

That was all eaten before 2pm. In church at about 7pm I was starving (really really starving I mean) and my tummy was rumbling terribly - I was hoping no one could hear! Came home and had a tin of Heinz Chicken Soup and three crackerbreads with what was left (about a teaspoonful) of my Philadelphia cheese.

Went to bed still hungry! But didn't weigh myself this morning - yay!

What I like about this band

One thing I like about the band is that it puts a swift stop to any mindless snacking. I was making supper for the children on Saturday and started popping a bit of this and one of that into my mouth. Didn't stay down and I learned my lesson fast, tho it was kind of torture getting all the sausages, burgers, chicken nuggets etc ready, and not able to eat anything.

Also, last night I woke up in the night dying for chocolate, so went to raid the fridge, and had a bit of cake. Again, a couple of mouthfuls later I had to give up.

Has to be good for me!

Friday, 25 January 2008

Predictable diet

Right now all I seem to eat or drink is:
Cranberry juice - probably not the lowest calorie option, but I think it must be good for me. And I need it to build up my iron levels.
Cup-a-soup, slimmer's version of chicken noodle Babybel cheese (light)
Philedelphia cheese (light)and Crackerbread

Next week's challenge is going to be to have more fruit and vegetables, somehow. I don't think the reconstituted pieces in the cup-a-soup really count towards my "five a day"

Slow progress

I weighed myself today and I've lost a little weight. I weighed the same (or slightly more!) at my pre op and 4-week-post op appointments. (I had lost a bit during my pre op diet). But for the first four weeks I'd not lost an ounce.

Now, two weeks further on, I've lost 2.5kgs. Hardly speedy weight loss, but at least I am going in the right direction. Now I need to redo my ticker, since I've forgotten my PIN

Tuesday, 22 January 2008

Got over one obstacle!

Today I had to meet my sister, whom I rarely see, she lives hundres of miles away. She'd wanted to meet me for lunch, but I managed to wiggle out of that, and agreed to meet her for some shopping and then to have afternoon tea.

I still can't eat without food burping back up, so I was very pleased that I managed to eat some of the offered apple and almond tart and drink all my apple and melon juice. Never even felt like I was going to be sick, so that was good.

I must have walked miles round the shops with her, and then I got to stand all the way home on the train, so hopefully I'll have worked off some calories.

When I got home I was starving and tried to eat some pretty mushy cauliflower in cheese sauce, but it didn't stay down. I've managed to have two cups of chicken noodle slim-a-soup. I must need the salt, as I find I crave them more than chocolate or anything sweet.

I'll have some crackerbread later on, with soft light cheese. My diet is horribly predictable. And I don't think I've lost any weight tho I going to keep off the scales till Friday, honest!

I don't really care if I only lose a pound a week, so long as I keep losing it. Slow and steady will do me ok; but I'm scared I might not have lost any. The six pounds lost shown on my ticker is from before the pre op diet.

Monday, 21 January 2008

What a difference a week makes

What a difference one week makes. It is Monday today, 9 days since my last fill. This time last week I could barely swallow fluids, and was wondering if I needed an unfill. Now, I can drink soup, meal replacement drinks and almost anything that isn't fizzy. And I can eat cheese, crackerbread and chocolate. Trying not to eat chocolate of course, but it does go down fairly easily if I do.

I think most biscuits would go down too, but I am trying to stick to healthy option - crackerbread only has 19 cals a slice, and I'm eating Babybel lights and light Philadelphia cheese with chives. I tried to eat some chicken curry yesterday but most of it came back up.

I've not really had much sucess with "real food" - even flat packed food (ready meals) doesn't go down very far or very well.

But I am definitely able to eat more than I was this time last week.

I am not going to weigh myself until Friday, when I'll be six weeks post op. It is depressing to see how fast some other people lose weight, but I guess (a) I don't really have that much weight to lose, compared to them and (b) I am horribly sedentary - ie I work from home, sitting down most of the time and don't do any kind of regular exercise.

I need to move my exercise bike from my bedroom (where it is a useful clothes horse) into the room where I work most of the day. Then I need to start using it. Oh joy. (sarcasm).

Maybe it is just the time of year, it is so cold and dark and the house is not particularly well heated, so the thought of exercise just make me want to curl up under a duvet, or dive into the biscuit tin.

Wednesday, 16 January 2008


I've finally gotten over the mega tight restriction, so can safely cancel my appt for tomorrow. I still have tight restriction, but can drink a glass of water over half an hour or so, without bringing any of it back up. So that is good.

Caught up with lilynolife's blog, and it is interesting to see the different experiences people have. I now have 5 mls in my band, having had a double fill (two fills in two days, so it is kind of like one fill), and 5mls is very very different from 3.5mls.

Yesterday I tried some soft food (weight watchers fish pie) but I don't think any of it stayed down. I find it hard to give up and move away from the food (or move the food away from me) even once some of it has come up. I feel like I ought to try to finish it. But I realise bringing food up isn't good for my band, so I need to try to stop that.

I did manage to eat about half a biscuit (I bought them in Belgium for the family) and that definitely stayed down. So long as I eat really slowly.

Not that I really want or need to be able to eat biscuits! Pasta, fish and minced meat all still refuse to go down, as do even the noodles in chicken noodle soup (slim a soup variety) - I have to scoop them all out with my spoon before I try to drink it.

I'm happy so far. Very happy that it has eased enough to same me going for an unfill, and that I am able to drink fluids. I expect that over the next few days/weeks I'll move on to eating soft foods.

Weight wise. . hard to tell if I've lost any, since dehydration always makes it look as tho you've lost weight.

Monday, 14 January 2008


Hi, how can I request access to your blog, would be very interested in your story.


It is now Monday evening and it's hard to say what my food intake has been. I've tried a few things, but nothing stays down but clear fluids, and even those only stay down, 10mils at a time, it feels like.

I have tried to drink several types of soup, none of which got past my band; and am sipping hot apple juice to try to get some fluid/nutrition into me. I feel ok (I think), tho I do wonder how much longer I can stay like this and feel ok.

It is hard to know (apologies is this is gross) how much of what I swallow stays swallowed - I keep trying in the hope that some will stay down. But maybe that is making my stomach more irritated and therefore tighter. . .

I had a good patch around lunchtime when I managed to have about 50mls of soup in half an hour, that encouraged me that maybe the band was loosening up a little, but if it was it isn't any more. I am burping up saliva right now, and it's well past 48 hrs after my second fill.

I have an appt booked with Dr De Bruyne (did you know there is a De Bruyne Street by the station? You do now: -) on Thursday in London.

I am not sure what to do, should I hold out at getting about half a litre of fluid (maybe 750mls max, but no, it is more like 500mls max) to stay down each day, and expect to feel better in a week (I mean to be able to drink more) or should I go to see him and get a defill of my band.

I have 5mls in a 9ml band, and . . .well, tomorrow I am going to measure everything I drink and keep down (note to self, be content with 10mls an hour, it is better than constantly throwing it back up.) (note to self from self, 10mls an hour is only 240mls a day, assuming I waken every hour to drink. . .you need more than that to stay alive)
By this time tomorrow I guess I'll know a bit more - is the band going to loosen, or do I need it defilled.
I really really don't want to keep toing and froing getting fills and unfills and refills and defills. But is this level of restriction sustainable? No. But I'm hoping it is going to loosen on its own.
But is it? Time is a great prophet.

Saturday in Belgium

(Vilvoorde Station)

We all went together for our second fills. CDB asked if I'd noticed much restriction and I said no, not much different from what it had been, so he offered me 1, 1.25 or 1.5mls this time. I said 1.5mls please without even thinking about it (maybe not such a wise move). (And I even arranged with him to come back in Feb for another double fill. Why did I think this one wasn't going to work??)

(Restaurant at the Campanile)

The needle didn't hurt much - the first fill I decided not to look at it, since if it looks sore it will hurt me. But I watched the second fill and was amazed at the length of the needle that he put inside me. Ouch. I mentioned it and he said that that was only a small needle and proceeded to show me much longer ones. Whew. Reminded me of an amniocentesis needle.

I didn't feel any different when I sat up, paid him the required 50 Euros and drank some of the water he offered me. He must have given me about 80 mls in a plastic cup. It is going down fine I assured him; so I left, and waited for the taxi in the waiting room.

Only then did I realise that nothing was going down. I could not drink the rest of that water. The water I had drunk was pushing it's way back up my throat and I was terrified I was going to be sick. Lots of deep breathing and concentrating and the water stayed put, but there was no way I'd get any more in; so I poured it down the sink in the waiting room.

(Bicycles at the station)
Since my train wasn't till later on in the day, I'd planned to walk round Vilvoorde and take some pics, and then head into Brussels and sight see - but whatever the sights of Brussels are, they are not round the Gare du Midi! (see below)

(Tho to be fair, this is a better side of the station area:

I felt fine until I ate (without thinking) a boiled sweet, and that did not go down either. Hmmm, so THIS is what they mean by restriction! I was very aware that I had time to kill, and that normally I would have filled in the time by stopping for meals or snacks etc. When you know you can't eat, you have more time on your hands.

I wonder how often in the last 20 yrs I've eaten out of habit or boredom or because it is "lunchtime". I wasn't hungry and couldn't eat, so food was out of the question. I did finally get a cup of instant soup from a snack bar in the station (they had lots more interesting things than soup for sale, but when your stomach says no, your stomach means NO). I managed

to drink about a third of the soup before I felt I was risking it re-arriving; so I stopped while the going was good. I need to learn that more.

On the train on the way home I bought a 500ml bottle of water, but could only drink about 50mls on the journey, and I managed another 100mls all that day. Total food intake for Saturday (oops if you skip the orange juice and scrambled egg I'd had for breakfast before the fill) was 30mls soup, 200mls water.

Well, I'm not going to get fat on that.

Back from Belgium

Following that last miserable post I decided to get a taxi to the train station, so at least I wouldn't start of soaking wet. Had a further mini crisis when I didn't realise that dh wanted to meet me in London to go with me to St Pancras, to chat; and so I had my mobile off.

Which left him thinking I'd been abducted by aliens, since he was sure we'd made firm plans to meet up. We might have, I was tired and harassed and so was he the night before, and it was just one of these mix ups that happen. I didn't realise he'd been waiting for me for 40 mins at a different station till I was checked into the Eurostar terminal, and ready to leave. Oops.

Interesting, as soon as I realised he was harrassed/worried about me, I immediately felt guilty (tho it wasn't my fault) and bought a large bar of chocolate and ate it. I also managed a large ham sandwich, so restriction was pretty minimal.

Arriving at Bruxelles Midi I was very proud of myself when I managed to read the timetables and find the right platform for the Vilvoorde train, leaving in about five minutes. Thankfully I double checked before I got on it and discovered the timetable I'd been reading didn't apply to the train I would have got on - I was reading the weekends and public holidays timetable.

Ouch. Glad I checked.

They have double decker trains in Belgium . . why not in London - think of the problems it would solve? Came to the conclusion that we have too many tunnels. And I can't work out if the graffiti is real vandalism or deliberate art, since all the trains seem to have it round the doors. .

Arrived safely at Vilvoorde and found the hotel quite easily this time :-) and just as I was going out to CDB's I met C from the WLS forums who was in the next room. She and a friend arrived at his before I'd been seen and we got chatting. Only one of us had lost much weight since the op (and it wasn't me) but I guess everyone reacts differently to different levels of restriction, C was definitely more restricted than I've been.
CDB checked my notes, and filled me up to 3.5ml, told me to go back to the hotel and eat fish or pasta. We all went back together and I ate an omlette, which went down fine. Then I went back to my room and finished the bar of chocolate, and took two sleeping pills and slept blissfully till my wake up call woke me.

Friday, 11 January 2008

Off to Belgium

I really don't want to go; I hardly slept last night after a bit of a family crisis. I really am exhausted, and this morning, 4 weeks post op, have not lost an ounce of weight.

Wouldn't go except dh insists I do.

And it is pouring rain and a 20 minute walk to the train station, the start of a long weary journey to Vilvoorde and then Melsbroek.


Will update later.

Thursday, 10 January 2008


Have noticed that I am drinking a lot less water: - less fluid of every kind. I normally have a 2 litre bottle by my desk, so I can see how much I've drunk all day, and I'm just not making any impact on it at all.

Must try harder.

Monday, 7 January 2008


I realise I am either

(a) completely unsuitable for a gastric band or

(b) in complete denial over the whole operation

I am due to go back to Belgium for a double fill on Friday. This is Monday, and I haven't even thought of buying Euros (takes days sometimes here), or dyeing my hair (which is looking distinctly rooted).

And I have not and will not weigh myself before I go.

I am able to eat anything and everything even today I had a cheese sandwich with chips. Oh dear oh dear. I do have the occasional "spit up" but I put that down to not chewing enough. If I chewed it enough, I could eat an elephant.

Also, which is sad bad not good news, I am ALWAYS hungry. Dunno what this op (remember I had a large hiatus hernia fixed) has done to me; but I never ever feel full; far worse than before the op. . . will discuss with CDB.

It kind of makes sense, if you understand what a hiatus hernia is. A small pouch of stomch moves upwards, past the diaphragm, giving me effectively two stomachs: one a hernia, and one real one.

I have been used to the "feeling superficially full, but wait a few minutes and then swallow reallllll hard and the food will move down and I can eat more" feeling.

Which is what the band is trying to do. Create a small pouch of stomach that I believe is my real stomach. I've had that for years, and it did not lead to weight loss. . . sad but true, I fear I've bought into the wrong operation.

Another issue which I haven't mentioned till now is that I've been thru a lot of pregnancies and with every one I vomitted like mad - all day every day for 6 months at least. So vomitting or "pbing" isn't something strange, it is pretty normal in this house.

My kids never blinked if they saw me rush to the loo to vomit, they just knew that that is what moms did (when pregnant). Now, no one here would notice supposing I ate and vomitted for hours on end every day.

Does anyone agree that I've bought the wrong operation?

Friday, 4 January 2008


Getting a little worried here. .

I have this sharp nagging pain - like a stitch in your side from school days of running round a track or something, only on my left, much further up, under my ribs; can't touch it with my hands, it is under my ribs (doesn't feel like heart pain, grin, not that I would know, but more like a stitch in your side that you get from exercising too much or too soon after eating)

It is definitely related to eating, worse when I've eaten.

I had had it occasionally pre op (maybe like ten times in my whole life) now I get it several times a day, and it is much worse.

Have I done soemthing awful like disolodged my band completely?? Or what is this pain??

Is it a hint that I am eating too much? Grin, I guess it is definitely that, cos I can now eat almost exactly what I did pre op. And I wouldn't have had this op if my eating was in moderation.

Some positions - like sitting over the PC - make it worse; it feels like trapped wind in a place wind never gets trapped.

Ouch. I guess I have plenty qs to ask CDB when I see him.

My wound is about 2mm more closed up, but still blistered with infection, despite my antibiotics.

I am on 500mg x4 a day of Flucloxacillin which, according to Wikipedia is used for Bacterial infections of the skin and soft tissue, such as infected ulcers, wounds or burns,

but ineffective against MRSA. So here's hoping I have a fairly common or garden wound infection, not MRSA.

But in the mean time, the problem is this &^%$^^*!! pain

Thursday, 3 January 2008

Stitches again

Still got a wound that won't heal, and a bit of poking around with tweezers located some black stitching. I pulled with all my might (think story of the enormous turnip :-) as did dh, but we could not get it out.

Finally rang the local surgery, who at times seem to exist to make sure that no one gets and medical treatment at all. . . who grudgingly gave me an evening appointment.

Saw a new (youngest there) doc who was actually quite interested in my condition (rather than looking at his watch every half minute like my previous GP did) , and who agreed that yes, there definitely was a stitch in the wound and worse, he was pretty sure it was infected.

Got the stitch out, he said it was "long term dissolvable" and doing no good at all, so might as well come out. I am now on antibiotics, hoping desperately that they work before my proposed double fill in Belgium in 8 days time. . .

Wednesday, 2 January 2008

Fed up

I am now 21 days out of surgery and feeling rotten. I stillllll have this horrible wound that won't heal, and I am heavier than I was before I went for bloomin' surgery. Feeling pathetic, hopeless and like I might as well have spent the money on lottery tickets, this gastric band has gotten me NOWHERE in terms of weight loss so far

I dodge the scales, but I am hovering around 91kg, same as pre op; ok I lost 5kg on the pre op diet but that was basically starvation. If I wanted to lose weight on the Cambridge Diet, I could have done without this op.

That is how I feel . . .

I have to go back to Belgium for a fill on 11th Jan - 8 days. I am scaredest that he wont' do a fill cost my wound is still gaping and oozing and not happy at all. That would be the biggest waste of money and worst disappointment. (if you look to the left you see a slight vertical properly healed scar. The mess in the middle is the scar that won't heal)

I am horrified at how little restriction I have. I have to be a littttttttle bit careful what I eat first thing in the morning; but once I've had some fluid, and a couple of hours of being up and about I can eat most things

And like I knew before surgery, alcohol, chocolate and the rest of the garbage goes down no bother. I really wish I had been 40 pounds heavier and been able to have stomach bypass op

Watched a very moving TV program on US 5 tonight, a 16 yr old had bypass surgery. He was 411 pounds before hand, and it was a battle getting a surgeon to do the op cos he was under 18, but a yr later he was just like normal. Ok, he was 6 ft 2 and a bit on the big side (240lbs) but normal, not just a massive walking disaster.

Lots of debate as to what causes overweight (or morbid obesity) is it nature or nurture. This program tended to blame genetics, since this man was from a normal family, with no one else with a weight problem.

His life got totally changed around. Yeah for him.

But right now. . .

I have lots of pain and oozing discharge from a superficial wound. I have worse muscle pain from another "keyhole" site, which looks great on the skin, but underneath everything realllllly hurts; worse than my hysterectomy, I can't carry, list or go upstairs without careful consideration of the muscles involved.

And I have virtually no restriction on what I eat or drink or chew or swallow. The restriction was greater at the beginning - now it is nothing.

Maybe and it is a big maybe, I am beginning to lose faith is this whole damn thing, once I've seen my doc Chris de Bruyne and had a "fill" (thereby tightening the band round my stomach, and in theory making me eat less) I'll start to lose weight. But frankly it is a big maybe.

I don't think there is a pill or op in the whole world that can control my weight. I believe it is a mental process; and that mental process ain't working.

I feel pretty pathetic and hopeless and low. And I wish this wound would heal - can't my body even do that right??

I did lose 4 litres of blood and was in a life and death situation a couple of weeks ago, but so what, I have to get on with life now as it is.

And life now is too fat and not happy.

Pic of wound coming up . . .so close down now if you get queasy easy. The yellowish colour is idodine/savlon/antiseptic spray; I sprayed it on the wound, and waited and within a moment or two, more fluid would seep out and cover the spray. I is prob not as sore as it looks, but sore enough!

Tuesday, 1 January 2008


One of my stitches which is supposed to have been removed is giving me a lot of bother. The wound, which is about an inch and a half and not particularly painful, will not close up, but oozes all the time - and looks quite different to the other scars which are healing nicely - you can see the difference between one scar to the left of the picture which has almost disappeared, and the other one which is open.

Dh did some open stomach surgery (grin) and we managed to remove this bit of stitch which the nurse and doctor at my local surgery didn't exist:

Hopefully the wound will close over now.