Thursday, July 24, 2014

Post-Surgery Musings

Yet another post about food, a natural obsession through this past winter, as I prepared to be admitted for Bariatric surgery, specifically the gastric bypass. It has been four and a half weeks since surgery, and a lot has changed. Through pre-surgery preparation, and post-surgery dietary restrictions, I've lost another twenty pounds. I've suddenly dropped from 3X to 1X, and nothing fits any more.

My therapy group has stayed in touch, a wonderful group, and they have asked if I have adventured in to my list of foods I had made before surgery. I added to the list every time I was hit with a craving while on a restricted liquid diet. Here's my list:

What I will eat after surgery:
Edamame seed pods
Apple fritter (half)
Corn Chips
Flaky pastry
Pastry wrapped sausages

What I was unprepared for is how radically my body has changed, and how long it will take to reach a new normal. My tiny pouch has definite dislikes, and some meals now look like a mountain of pain instead of a feast. I've had toast (broken in quarters and eaten over an hour). And strawberries, locally field grown, and absolutely delicious. But as for the rest of the list, not interested....yet. The apple fritter would only appeal as a small bite.

I have new cravings, though. Watermelon is wonderful. A home-made Popsicle, so cool and slow, delightful.

I can see why the Weight Wise program is so hung up on diarizing my meals. Before surgery, it was to restrict my intake. After surgery, it is work to get in enough calories during the day. I have to be conscious, alert, and mindful of every bite. I am grateful for my years of preparation as a diabetic, eating every two hours, and counting my proteins. That's all coming in handy.

I can anticipate the months ahead as the incisions heal and the pouch relaxes. It will become gradually easier to get through a meal, and a little bit kinder to reach my calorie target for the day. In about a year it should all be settled and my body will find it's new normal.

But I won't ever be the same.

Who knows what size I'll end up? But as my granddaughter kindly pointed out, I'm happy now (many symptoms have disappeared, and my medications drastically reduced), and once I settle to a new weight, I will find a way to be happy there, too.