March Madness came and went with the hustle and bustle of preparation for my gastric bypass surgery in May. Yes, that's right - it is in May!
Well, it is going as scheduled ... I'm sure to dot my "T's" and cross my "I's". Oh, you know what I mean. There is so much to do and so much to learn in this period of time.
I'm pretty sure (about 99.0125%) that all of the doctor clearances are in order - cardiology (somewhere I had a heart for them to listen to), hematology (so I don't have any blood clots after surgery), pulmonary (I can breathe even though we live in the "crud-zone") and my most amazing clearance of all ... the psychiatric evaluation (I'm amazed I passed this one!).
I've had countless EKG's and blood tubes taken (at least I won't have enough blood at this point to clot). As well as X-rays and a urinalysis, which I passed with flying colors (especially with the color yellow). A drug screen and nicotine screen were also issued, I passed this also ... of course. I may have smoked in college and quit soon afterwards because I didn't inhale. So, it doesn't count.
All these tests listed above are typical and indicative for a successful preparation for surgery. Although, it seems like a lot - it is! That is because it is a safety issue which I'm very thankful for with the high competence and standard of the whole bariatric program. Therefore, I'm very pleased - I feel validated, safe and I feel like the TV show "Cheers" - where everyone knows your name - just without the alcohol.
I've completed the sessions with the dietician. To my surprise, a pre-pre-pre-pre operative diet is to be followed one month prior to surgery. This is to make sure that the liver is within its normal limits at surgery. I think it also gives a sneak peek into what follows the surgery with the liquid protein drinks.
My new diet is very simple - so I shouldn't be able to screw it up. I have to buy this protein powder (it comes in different flavors and a variety of companies to choose from). I chose chocolate 100% whey protein shake. Surprisingly, it doesn't taste like chalk - not that I have consumed chalk before.
I still have a couple of days before this new diet becomes active - so I've been trying out the diet in stages for preparation of the start date. So, I might have two shakes and eat healthy the rest of the day, for instance.
The actual diet consists of morning shake, lunch shake, a snack, healthy lean protein dinner and a shake. So shake, shake, shake shake goes your blender. Personally, I think that this will be a success - well it better be!!!!!! The team has done an extremely good and efficient job to get me to the place I am today (as well as the other participants). I believe this is the first time that I feel and believe in myself for success.
I've been exercising here and there ... not because I don't want to - it's because of injury. So, I wait for a few days then go back and try a less invasive machine for cardio workout. I also work with the weights to begin to tone. I've attended bariatric support group meetings about various subjects from exercise, reading labels and what to do if dining out, etc. These have been most appreciated and helpful.
Yes, I'm a tad apprehensive for the surgery - not necessary because of the surgery itself but because of all the junk I have to do at home to get ready for the surgery. Like my cat - "catzilla." Just kidding, her name is Sophie - but she uses her tail like "Godzilla" and wipes off half of the items off my dresser. So I have to cat-proof, do laundry, clean my place, etc.
I am excited for the new me and what doors will open with this opportunity ... yes, another poem to follow!
"Surgery time is near, for this I have no fear; the outcome is exciting and new, a new body and good health is a clue; my goals in reach, to others I hope to teach; soon I will be able to achieve my bucket list, my excess weight will not be missed; to fly in one seat on a plane, my life won't be the same; my hope is to go to an amusement park, to ride the rides till dark; to go shop for clothes at a boutique, no shame about my body I seek; although this list is nice, good health and pressure off my joints will suffice; I look forward to this incredible event; a gift to myself and make that proverbial dent. Until next time ...
Casi Stewart can be reached at casichilstew @yahoo.com. A Weighty Issue appears every other Monday on the Life page.