Sunday, February 28, 2010

Some Questions About Vacation and the Band

Well y'all, as most of you know, I've been on vacation this week. I have really been enjoying myself spending some great time with my brother and his family.

I'm a little curious how all of you do with your band when you're on vacation. Specifically, the first vacation you took after being banded if you can remember it. This has been the week from hell bandwise for me. I have not been able to keep hardly anything down. Last night I was so sick that all that was coming up was stomach acid at about 3:00 am. Which I know this was coming from below my band. Way beyond a PB here.

Now, I've read on a few of blogs that when you travel, your band tightens up a little bit and you have some issues keeping food down. Also, when my mom was first banded and she flew out here she couldn't keep food down. She said she was sick almost every meal. I say this because realistically, she's going to have the most similar issues/results that I do.

I'm terrified that I've slipped my band. When I go for my next appointment I think I'm going to do a barium swallow to make sure that it didn't slip. Even if things get back to normal I think I'm still going to do it.

I seem to always have this feeling that I'm very full or something is stuck. I know that when we PB or throw up it causes us to have some swelling. I'm hoping this is the main issue that I'm having. The tightness of being on vacation as well as the swelling from being sick.

So, I'm looking for some input here. How do you guys do when you're on vacation? And, if you can remember the first vacation you went on after being banded it would benenficial to me as well. I just want to make sure that what's going on is somewhat normal. Make no mistake though, I hate this. I think the only thing that I've kept down this week was a few pieces of lunchmeat and some grape juice.

Let me also say that I'm not doing/eating anything out of the ordinary. And I KNOW I'm not eating too much because I have to throw it up after just a few bites. Less than I would eat normally. So, like I said, let me have it guys. Let me know what you think or the experiences that you've had with this. I'm looking for any input or suggestions.

I've also read that someone that was having issues called her bariatric doc and he said she needed to get an unfill immediately. That really isn't an option for me because I'm in a small-ish town in Ohio. And I'm going home tomorrow. Hopefully things will be back to normal. I might call them when I get home and see what they want me to do because there is a bariatric doc where I live so that would be an option for me at that time.

Silver lining........I've lost about 8 pounds this week. *shrug*

Friday, February 26, 2010

Updated Pic

My mom took this picture of me at Chuck E Cheese a couple of days ago while we were there with my niece and nephew. This picture shocked me. Totally! It really has showed how much I've lost. I even look thinner in BRIHT FRIGGIN PINK! *doing the happy dance* And it's damn hard to look svelte in bright pink. Which is why that's the first time I've worn that shirt in AGES. Thought I'd bring it on vacation with me since my mom says I don't wear enough pink. :)

It's really strange how you think things are the same till you see yourself. That goes either don't notice the differences in yourself till you see the pictures.

Well just wanted to share this small victory with you all. Don't know if it's an NSV or an SV. Maybe a little bit of both. Happy posting everyone.

Thursday, February 25, 2010


OK guys, here's another one. Figured since I'm on vacation I can tell you all about me. Enjoy.


*What is your salad dressing of choice? Honey Mustard

*What is your favorite sit down restaurant? Outback Steakhouse

*What is your favorite fast food restaurant? Chipotle

*What food could you eat every day for two weeks and not get sick of? Mexican or Chinese

*What are your pizza toppings of choice? don't eat pizza

*How many televisions are in your house? 3

*What color cell phone do you have? blue


*Are you right-handed or left-handed? right

*Have you ever had anything removed from your body? My wisdom teeth, my appendix and 7 pounds from each breast in a reduction. seriously.

*What is the last heavy item you lifted? my suitcase I brought on vacation with me; was totally prepared to pay the extra for it being over the 50 pound limit.

*Have you ever been knocked unconscious? Nope

*Have you ever fainted? yes


*If it were possible, would you want to know the day you were going to die? I don't know. Tough call, would want to spend as much time with my family and get affairs in order, but counting down to the day would suck.

*If you could change your name, what would you change it to? wouldn't change my name.

*How many pairs of flip-flops do you own? two or three.

*Last person you talked to? on the phone, hubby; in person, mom.


*Season? Fall...I love fall!

* Holiday? Halloween and Fourth of July

*Day of the week? don't really have one, as long as i wake up breathing it's a good day

*Month? October, it's got the best weather!

* Color? purple

* Drink? iced herbal green tea


*Missing someone? always

*What are you listening to? my niece and nephew playing mariokart on the wii

*Watching? mariokart wii

Worrying about? on vacation, no worries right now

*What's the last movie you saw? the hangover. HI LAR IOUS! i highly recommend it.

*Do You Smile often? i try

*If you could change your eye color what would it be? they are currently blue, i would just make them a darker blue

*What's on your wish list for your birthday? wii fit

*Can you do push-ups? a few

*Can you do a chin up? absotively not. damn weak arms

*Does the future make you more nervous or excited? EXCITED!!

*Have you been in a Car wreck? a few

*Have you caused a Car wreck? I've bumped a car or two

*Do you have an accent? on certain words i do

*Last time you cried? yesterday.

*Plans tonight? chilling with my brother and his family

*Have you ever felt like you hit rock bottom? oh yeah

*Name 3 things you Bought yesterday? didn't buy anything yesterday

*Met someone who changed your life? of course

*For the better or worse?? forever...

*How did you bring in the New Year? chilling out at the house with hubby

*Would you go back in time if you were given the chance? I would but I don't know if i'd really change anything. You change one this and everything would be different.

*Have you ever dated someone longer than a year? yes

*What songs do you sing in the shower? i don't sing in the shower, not enough time

*Have you held hands with someone Today? nope

*Who was the last person you took a picture of? my mom and my niece

*Are most of the friends in your life new or old? old

*Do you like pulpy orange juice? sure

*What is something your friends make fun of you for? that i'm an AVID race fan. mainly nascar and dirt track racing, hence my name.

*Last time you ate peanut butter and jelly? before being banded over 8 months ago, i'm a banster that can't eat breat

*What were you doing 12 AM last night? talking to hubby when he got home from work

*What was the first thing you thought of when you woke up? how much i love my niece and nephew, they woke me up before preschool today.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

The Bandster Quiz

I've seen this on a few blogs and thought it was neat. I like those "getting to know you" things. So here's my bandster quiz....

Bandster Quiz

1. How long have you been banded? 8 months, 1 week

2. What was your highest pre-band weight? / Current weight now? / Total lost to date? 247/199/120

3. What is your best "go-to" food to get in your protein? fish

4. What is your favorite protein brand/shake? I really don't like them, if I didn't have another one before I died, I'd leave this Earth happy....however, the dark chocolate Atkins are good. As well as any kind of whey protein from GNC.

5. What food do you miss the most now being post-band? pizza....I'm a no bread bandster cuz anything that even resembles bread gets stuck, so I miss pizza.

6. What is your favorite "mushy" food? cheesy broccoli soup mixed with mashed potatoes. I also put a little bit of unflavored protein powder on mine as well.

7. What was your worst PB experience? Doughnuts....that's how I originally found out I couln't eat any type of bread.

8. What has been the hardest part of this journey so far for you? Going through with it even though my hubby didn't support it.

9. What is your best NSV to date? Getting into a pair of jeans that hasn't fit me in over eight years. The only reason I kept them was because they cost me so damn much money and I wanted to fit into them again; and being able to polish my own toenails.

10. What is your top non-weight goal for your band? (top NSV maybe?) To be healthy so I could have a goals have since changed, don't know if I want kids, but that was the reason I decided to get banded.

11. What is your goal weight or size? either an 8 or a 10, don't know yet.

12. What band "rule" do you live by (i.e. don't cheat on)? Protein first

13. What band "rule" do you not follow as much or aren't so good at? I drink energy drinks. Usually sugar free red bull. It's lightly carbonated, not like soday. Still cheaching though.

14. What is your goal "reward"? Being able to wear a swimsuit if I want to. I haven't worn one in over ten years.

15. What are you most thankful for, post-band? That I'm noticing myself getting healthier as I lose more weight.

My Nieces Birthday - and Other News

As you all know by now I'm on vacation in Ohio visiting my brother and his family. Yesterday was my nieces third birthday and here are a couple pictures of her with her pink cake. Pink is her favorite color. She's our ultimate girly girl. She got all the great Disney Princess Fare you could think of. From a suitcase to little pink cowboy(girl) boots. This is the first birthday that I've been able to spend with her so it was a very special day for me as well.

In Other News:
Does anyone have issues with their band while traveling? I know that some people have told me they have, but I don't understand what was up with me yesterday. NOTHING STAYED DOWN! No matter what I tried. But, it's like the first day of my period which I have issues with usually cuz my band gets so tight. Anyone else have tightness issues when traveling?

The best rationalization I came up with is a disruption in my routine. New time zone and my regular routine is messed up. That's the only thing I can think of. Anyone else got anything???? Please let me know if any of you have had this issue. No worries about TMI, I can take it.


Tuesday, February 23, 2010


Just a heads up to let you all know that I made it to Ohio in one piece. Got in last night and spending some much needed time away from home (haven't been on vacation in about two years) and with my brother, his wife, and my niece and nephew. This is the first time I've been here in about five years since my nephew was born, so I was due for a visit.

Today is my niece's birthday, she's 3. She had to go to the doctor and get shots today, that was not fun! Almost broke my heart to see her cry (I was literally welling up when they gave her the shot; my own fear of needles aside), she knew it was coming too. The minute my brother sat her down on the table she was upset, she knew. Smart as whips these two.

She's such a girly girl too. Her birthday cake is pink. Frosting and all. I remember when I was that age....I alternated my birthday cakes, pink cake, purple frosting one year, purple cake, pink frosting the next year. For YEARS! Everyone at my dad's work knew when my birthday was cuz he'd always bring in pink, or purple cake in his lunch box. :)

I'll be here till next Monday so I'll try to keep up on blogs and posts giving you guys a heads up on what's going on here. Hope you all are having a good day and happy blogging.

PS-I'm in Lima for those of you familiar with Ohio.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Hi Ho, Hi Ho, it's Off to Vacation I Go.

Hay everybody, just wanted to give you a heads up that I'm leaving for vacation today and will be back on the first of March. I'll still be trying to catch up and blog when I can.

I'm going to Ohio (my brother and his kids live there). I haven't been to his house since my nephew was born five years ago. Have seem them since, just don't get a chance to go out there very often. So my brother thought that since I was laid off from my job (have since gotten a new one, start when I get back from vacation) it would be a perfect time. So he bought my ticket out there. For those of you in or around Ohio, he lives in Lima.

The weather here in Missouri is supposed to be terrible for the next couple of days so I will be going to Kansas City tonight and I fly out Monday morning.

Hope you all have a great week and I'll catch up with everyone when I can.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

What Should I Name My Band?

I've seen on other blogs that people are naming their bands. Whelp, I decided that I wanted a piece of that action. So, here's the deal.....hubby and I picked out three names and a little bit about each name. Soooo.....without further adieu (sp)

Patton ~ the turning point in the battle of the bulge

C.C. DeFill ~ unskinny bop, bop, bop

U.L.A.G.G ~ Ultimate Life Altering Gastric Guide

And since I'm leaving on vacation after this weekend and will be gone for a week, I'll run the voting untill I get home next Monday. Of course I'll be checking in to see how it is going for the names and trying to stay caught up on posting and reading while I'm gone.

So, voting starts now and ends on Monday, March 1st. Happy posting.

Before Pics.....Be Gentle

I finally scrounged out a couple of before pics. Since BG was brave enough to put hers out there I thought I would follow her lead. Mine aren't as organized though. Well, anyway gotta get them posted before I lose my nerve. See my blog entry "8 Months After Lapband Surgery" for the current pictures.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

8 Month Bandiversary

So I'm 2 for 2. I thought about not working out today at all, not out of laziness, (completely, it is my 8 month bandiversary, after all) but because my hubby was home. I have issues working out infront of people. Which is why I don't belong to a gym. Never have. Never will. It's like trying on a swimsuit in a dressing room with bad lighting. (hairy legs and all)

I've actually noticed that I have a lot of work out videos. HELLO!! WHERE WERE THESE BEFORE GETTING BANDED!? *Stuffed in a box with the adult videos probably* KIDDING! Geez, my mother does read this blog, on occasion. *Sorry mom*

But, seriously, where did these come from? I have everything from pilates to dancing videos, to boxing. I might even find some Richard Simmons if I look hard enough. Yeah right, and Jimmy Hoffa might be under my bed. Doubtful, but it could happen.

It actually felt good to be out of bed, had a shower, had my workout and was eating my breakfast by 10:00 am. Kind of an oddity for me since I've gotten laid off from my job. Usually I roll out of bed, whenever and go straight to the computer to do a little homework and blogging. Which I still acheived both of those things today.

Maybe it's starting to click, the pieces are falling together. I read in someones blog yesterday that to see if you're at your sweet spot you need to see if you can eat less than 4 oz of meat. So, out the food scale came. I weighed out 3.7 oz of chicken, cooked up a little rice and steamed some broccoli. Ate less than the 4 oz. One chicken tender, a couple bites of rice and a little of the broccoli (which I had issues with, so no broccoli for me).

I'm at my sweet spot, now the rest is up to me. I'm starting to get some loose skin on my abs, legs, and arms. I really don't want to have surgery to fix this if I can prevent it from happening. There's only one way for me to do that.......get up and move.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Chocolate and Salted Caramel Cupcakes

OK, here's the thing, I've seen on a few blogs that some of us are eating chocolate and salted caramel cupcakes.


Help a banded sister out! lol If anyone would like to provide me with this I would be eternally grateful.

Thank you for your time, have a nice day. :D

Back on the Work Out Wagon

First, let me start with hoping you all had a Happy Valentines Day. Hope it was great for you all. I got to spend it with two of my favorite men (Daddy and Chris) and my mom and watched the Daytona 500! All the Valentine present I need right there. :)

Anywho. I figured since today was Monday it would be a great day to start working out again. The whole, "most people decide to start things on Monday".....thing. I'm leaving for vacation in a week from today and I'm hoping to maybe established a habit, which takes 21 days. At least that's what I've heard.

I've worked out a few times for a couple of days and then just decided that I would take a break from it for a couple of days and then never went back. Don't really know why. Actually that's a lie, I know why, I got lazy. So, in the sprit of my word of the year (accountability) I wrote myself a little message on my bathroom mirror where I write down my daily weight.

It says, and I quote: "Get your ass up off the couch and work out! Every day! No excuses! It takes 21 days to make a habit. Next weigh in goal: 10 more pounds lost." My next weigh in is March 15th. That gives me enough time to build the habit working out every day and also boost my metabolism enough that I'll know how to maintain when I get to goal. Which is still a ways away, but I want to be prepared.

I've also noticed that I'm starting to get a little extra skin in my upper leg and lower stomach area. Not so much that I need it fixed right now, but if I don't start tightening and toning that could become a real problem in the future. I don't really want to have that surgery if I don't need to. Especially if it can be prevented by working out and taking better care of myself.

I noticed a couple of pretty cool NSV's recently; I can paint my toenaels without feeling like I'm dieing the whole time. And, yes, I know it's winder, but I always make sure my toenails are painted regardless of the time of year. It makes me feel sexy. :) Like wearing pretty underwear, you walk a little taller knowing that you're a whole lot of sexy underneath all the layers. Especially this time of year with all the freakish snow. The other one is that clothes that I could barely pull up over my rear-end before are now falling off. Yesterday my hubby was singing "Pants on the Ground" cuz I kept pulling up my sweatpants that were way too big. :) But oh so comfy. So much so that I'm willing to have them taken in so i can still wear them. Is that bad? :)

Have a great day everyone, and Happy Blogging.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

My Word of the Year.......Accountability

There are so many different ways we bandsters hold ourselves accountable for what we do/don't do. Everyone's way is different. It's actually quite interesting to find out what my fellow bandsters do to hold themselves accountable.

One thing I don't do is the food diary. I measure a lot of things with the food scale, (ie: fish, chicken, beef, etc to make sure I get the proper 3-4 oz size) but that's pretty much the extent of all that.

Here's my thing.......I'm a daily weigher. Hi, my name is Erika, and I'm a scale whore. I wish I wasn't, but I am. *is this a cone of shame moment? hehe* My SWA Membership plaque is hanging at eye level above the scale so I can look at it whilst I weigh. I keep a dry erase marker in my bathroom. I have a three part mirror over the sink and on the left hand side I write down what my weight is that day. I also put an asterisk by the days of my cycle so that way I know I'm going to be a little heavier on those days.

I do this for many reasons. One is that when I look at my face in the mirror everyday, my weight is staring back at me. I also record what my starting weight was (date of seminar, 247), what the official weight was at my last weigh in at the docs office (206 as of last fill; down to 202 now), as well as how many pounds I've lost (this also being the official number from the docs office; currently 41 pounds by official doc's scale).

This works for me. I guess somewhat better than the food diary. Because I know if there isn't an asterisk by my weight and it's a little higher than I would like, or the scale seems to keep going the wrong way (the numbers are rising instead of lowering, stupid scale) I reflect on what I ate the day before, or maybe the two days before.

Ultimately the only person we have to answer to is ourselves. I guess that's the main point of being accountable. This helps a lot. Blogging and knowing there are people in my life that are gonna bust my chops if I try to beat my band on certain days. Thanx everyone for all the support. It means more than you all will ever, ever know. I love you all, I really do.

Keep the blogs and support coming everyone. It's irreplaceable. Hopefully, making sure I'm accountable will not leave me on race weekend. The Daytona 500 is this weekend. On Sunday. HAPPY VALENTINES DAY TO ME!! :D

Be accountable. In whichever way works best for you.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Introducing My Mom to My Blog.......HI MOM!

Good afternoon everyone.

Mom, meet my blog; blog, meet my mom. *insert handshake here* :)

Introduced her to my blog today. Hope she's reading happily. My mom is also a WLS Surgery Patient, my best friend, and my best support system. We've been hand in hand in this since the beginning. Went to the seminar, pre op, surgery, post op, and our fills together. We were actually banded by the same doc on the same day. We agreed on the day of the seminar that we were in this together, if one of us can't make a fill appointment, we reschedule and make sure we can go together.

Well, that's all for now. Gotta get back to doing homework. Have a great day everyone.


Tuesday, February 09, 2010

Clothes, Clothes, Clothes

I am in the process of boxing up my clothes that are too big, I have everything from size 22-24W to 16-18W. Does anyone want them? If you do, send me a message with your address and I'll get them out to you.

Also, if anyone has any 14-16 they're getting rid of, that's the size I am now so I will gladly take them on a trade.

Thanx everyone, have a great day.

PS: Feeling much better since I got a little bit of sleep. Will post more about that later.

Happy posting.

Sick, sick, sick

Holy cow this has been a rough day. As you can tell by the time of this post I'm have trouble sleeping.

I have a question for the ladies out there.......TMI warning.......feel free to turn back now if you would prefer I not subject you to oversharing.

With that out of the way, do any of you ladies have issues with tightness on the first day of your menstral cycle? I have since I got my band, but nothing like today. I can't even keep tea down today. I don't know if this is normal or what. I know that I was fine yesterday. I also ate a lot though. With the Superbowl watch party I pretty much grazed all night long. It was bad. The monster reared it's ugly head big time last night. It was like I wasn't banded at all. Now, I know being due to start my cycle had a lot to do with that, but this is ridiculous.

Questions, concerns, ideas.........let me know ladies. I'm all ears.

Monday, February 08, 2010


I was reading Marie Claire magazine this month and there is an article in there about a brave woman who lost 200 pounds, then gained half of it back. She is not a WLS surgery patient.

Here's the link for the article:

It's a good read, but the comment that was left is what concerns me the most. People that say this is the easy way out should be slapped. I know it sounds rude and I'm sorry, but they have no idea. My hubby was a person that thought this was the easy way out; sometimes I wonder if he still does. That all it would take is a little time in the gym and I'd be all better.

I'd tried it all before this. NutriSystem, Weight Watchers, Atkins......many, many others. I succeeded at some and failed at others, regardless I always gained back whatever I had lost, and then some. Which is why I made the decision in the beginning to tell very few people that I was getting banded. Some of my family didn't even know this is what I had chose to do untill it was already done.

Why do people think this is the easy way out? Has anyone seen the new commercial for the Realize Band? I think it's amazing! The first thing the gentleman on the commericial says is that if people think bariatric surgery is the easy way out, they're wrong. Which they are. Very, very wrong indeed. And it's also hurtful when people say things like that; what makes them so much better than me, have they never failed at anything?

I've told my family that they don't need to center my life around my band. I'm the same person I always was, just going to be healthier. Yes, there are certain things that I can't eat, but that doesn't mean that my family can't eat them. I knew what I was doing going into this. I also knew what to expect, good and bad. When people always ask me how much weight I've lost or what it's like, it creates a stigma for bariatric patients that I'm not comfortable with. It's great they're concerned with my weight loss and are curious at how I'm doing, but it feels like since I have a LapBand, I've become one......does that make any sense?

I had a bad habit going into this of not sticking to "diets". When I discovered they weren't going to work I abandoned them. Why stick with something that I know isn't working?

Getting banded really was the best thing that I've ever done. I was reading some of the other blogs and it has been mentioned that they wished they would have done it when they were younger. I'm 29, actually got banded when I was 28. The only issue that I have is that I wish I would have done this sooner. I got married when I was 26.....I don't even look like the same person anymore than in my wedding pictures.

I am so upset that people think this is the easy way out. Most of the time it's people that it's easy for them to diet, they lose weight by cutting soda out of their diet. They're the lucky ones. Do they honestly think that if we (bandsters) could do that we would, or that we haven't tried that before? I've also heard that we make ourselves victims by saying that we can't lose weight in conventional ways. How are we victims by making lifestyle changes and taking control of our lives?

Has anyone else had this issue? That people treat you differently? Or they think you only did this cuz you're "lazy", "looking for the easy way out", etc?

*whew* That felt good. Sorry about that everyone. I just have a difficult time with people that spout off about things they know absolutely nothing about. If you ask me, it's intolerance to our way of life. Intolerance=Ignorance.

Sunday, February 07, 2010


Lock your windows and stay in doors people. This chick is CRAZY!

A good friend of mine drew this of me, so I thought I'd post it. Have a great day everyone. :)

Super Bowl Sunday........Game or Commercials

Well, here we are on Super Bowl Sunday........undecided if I'm going to watch for the game or the commercials. I'll have a good book handy just incase. However, props to the Saints for making it to their first Super Bowl in franchise history. I think after all their city has been through they deserve this.

On to the main question of the do I make good food choices today? Sometimes at events like this are rough. Kind of like tailgating at the races. On the up side, usually there is a pretty good fare of meat lined up. Helps me with the protein choice at least. Thankfully, I know most of the commercials won't be about food.

So, here I sit wondering what is going to go on with me today. Onederland is still an elusive 2 pounds away. Sneaky onederland. I've thought about going back to full liquids or doing a 5 day pouch test just to get these last two pounds off. However, today is not that day. Not with all the good food that will be available to me. It's also a great opportunity to spend time with family. Hubby's side of the family are really into football. My family is racing, obviously.

Off to the game I go (will be watching on my father-in-laws new 46 inch LCD TV). I'll keep you all posted on the food choices and kicking onederlands ass as the week progresses. :) Happy posting everyone.

Saturday, February 06, 2010

8 Months After Surgery

I know some of you don't know what my before pictures look like, I'm trying to dig some of them up. For those of you that know me and know what I looked like before surgery, here's some updated pics of me.

New Home/New Look

Well, here is the new home for my blog. My other family and friends were interested in what was going on with me LapBand wise so I thought I'd move the blog over to a public site.

I'm down 47 pounds now to 203. From 247 when I went to my seminar. It's surreal sometimes. Looking at old pictures of myself, then looking at more recent pictures of me. I was going through my wedding album the other day (I do that periodically) and I don't even look like the same person. The only thing that's still the same is my face. That's the only way I can tell it's still me.

Non related LapBand things going on in my life are that we currently have no heat. The board on our furnace fried this last week and it needed to be replaced. Well, we got that fixed and the elements fried in it. So when the guys came to look at it they said the whole unit's shot and they need to replace it. We have space heaters though so we'll be ok. Should get our heat back by Tuesday. I'll keep you all posted on that.

Well, hope you all enjoy the new home/new look for the blog.
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