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Post Op Journal August - September 2002
Jamie's Journey

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August 1, 2002
 
Happy August everyone!!  I hope that you all aren't as hot as I am!  It has been so hot lately that I don't even want to go outside.  I was actually going to go jogging this morning until I stepped outside and thought I would die of heat exhaustion by the end of the driveway.  So, needless to say I didn't exercise today and I actually wanted to.  I forgot to weigh myself this morning since today is my "Weekly Weigh Day", so I will try and remember tomorrow and let you know how I am doing.   But I do have some exciting news!  Jodi and I went shopping in Gainesville on Saturday and of course we went into all the "skinny stores" and I thought, "you know, I could probably fit into an XL", so I tried on 3 XL shirts and an XL skirt and they all fit!!  I wanted to run around the store screaming because I was so excited.  Oh yeah, we were in Lerner's in case you were wondering.  I can't even tell you what a psychological break through that was.  I know I told you about the fear of going to Victoria Secret because they might think I was too fat to shop there, but I didn't tell you about going to Liz Claiborne with my Mom.  I guess I was embarrassed because I am such an outgoing person that my behavior kind of shocked me.  Ok, here's what happened...I was in Liz Claiborne when I saw the CUTEST skirt and shirt set in a size XL, so I plucked them right off the rack and was heading back to the fitting rooms when all of a sudden I saw a group of women and their husbands around the dressing area.  So, I freaked, I immediately thought that I am not skinny enough and if they see me carrying these items to the dressing room they are going to laugh at me and say that there is no way someone of my size should be trying on anything in this store.  I know, I know, I am paranoid, but I was honestly scared to go and try them on because I thought that those people would laugh at me.  I was quite shocked that I would ever think that, but I did.  So, Saturday was a definite break through for me to actually try clothes on in a "skinny store".  And oh, by the way, I fit into a size 14 jeans at Lane Bryant on Saturday.  Granted they were too tight and I would have never worn them in public, but they buttoned and zipped.  I told my sister that there must be trick mirrors in the dressing room because I actually looked thin!  I have been looking thinner from the side, but I still think I am wider in the hips, but anyway, I looked thinner from the front in those jeans, not just the side.  I am probably not making any sense, but believe me I looked thinner!  :o)
 
Ok, so on to American Idol.  I thought the group as a whole performed better this week.  I especially liked RJ and Kelly's performances this time around.  I am glad that Ryan was voted off, but I felt bad for her because they wanted her to sing at the end of the show and she was crying so she didn't sound too great.  I think that she is pretty, but not what American Idol is all about (as Simon would say!!).
 
I just got home from the grocery store and the weirdest thing happened.  I was unloading my cart (with Shiloh's help!) and the manager came over and was like I noticed the last time I saw you in here a couple of months ago that you had lost a lot of weight and you are really looking terrific.  I was about to say thank you when she said I saw that article about you in the Florida Healthcare Magazine, so that's how you did it!  She was really excited for me and said that a mutual acquaintance of ours had the surgery a couple of years ago and is doing wonderfully.  Then this other girl that works there said that she was thinking of having it done, so I gave both of them my web address and hopefully they will visit.  If you are reading this...HI from me!!!  It seems like I am recognized a lot because of that article.  Oh, the price of fame!  HA!!
 
 

 August 3, 2002

First things first....Today I would like to wish a very happy anniversary to my Nana and Papa!  They are celebrating 50 wonderful years together.  CONGRATULATIONS and I LOVE YOU!!  Wow, what an accomplishment!!  It is amazing to me that anyone could stay together for 50 years; it is truly an inspiration to those of us that are still looking for that someone special.  It can be done!  We don't have to be part of the 52% divorce rate if you find someone that shares your values and aspirations and will help you reach your goals.  I know that my grandparents base the longevity of their marriage in their faith in God and they strongly believe that He is the glue that has held them together for all these years.  I hope to be that lucky one-day!!

 

~Weight Update~  I weighed myself yesterday and discovered that I am down  to 203 pounds.  That puts me just 3 more measly pounds away from my immediate goal of reaching 200 pounds.  I know that I will go out and have a party the day I can say that I weigh UNDER 200 pounds.  How amazing is this??  I just can't believe that I am almost there.  Ok, I made a decision this morning that starting Monday I am back on protein only until I reach my next goal after 200 which is 175.  So, everyone that knows me that reads this journal DO NOT under any circumstances let a carb get near me after Monday!  I am going to need your help.  I just have this feeling that if I go back to the protein only thing that I can drop the last 50 pounds I want to lose quicker than if I keep up the carb intake.  So, this is my solemn vow that as of Monday I will not eat any carbs!  May God have mercy on my soul!  :o) HAHA!!  (I'll keep you posted on how it's going!!)

August 21, 2002
 
Hi everyone!  I'm sorry it has been so long since I have updated, but I have been SWAMPED!  School started last week and I have worked every day for the last 3 weeks to get ready for it!  We got off to sort of a rocky start, but I am hoping that things start to look up soon.  I'm sure it will once the kids and teachers get used to the schedule and the expectations.  Anyway...on to bigger and better news..I am down to 199!!  I weigh UNDER 200 pounds!!  I absolutely cannot fathom it!  Do you know how long it has been since I have weighed UNDER 200 pounds??  No, well I'll tell you...in high school, but not after my junior year.  So we're talking probably 9 years since I have weighed less than 200 pounds.  I am in shock.  I weighed myself like 4 times just to make sure that I wasn't hallucinating or anything, and I wasn't!!  I even pinched myself!  :o)  It is shocking to me to think that I have around 50 more pounds to lose and I will be done losing!  After years and years of needing to lose weight and wanting to lose weight finally seeing the goal within my reach is scary and exciting. 
 
Just a word to the wise, after surgery please make sure to follow up with your OB/GYN.  I have learned the hard way that it is necessary to do that.  I won't go into too much detail, but I was in the Emergency Room this past Saturday with excessive bleeding and severe abdominal pain.  Well, come to find out that fat cells store estrogen and when you have a lot of fat cells (like I used to) you can have problems because of too much estrogen in your system and once you lose a significant amount of weight your body goes into shock because of the loss of estrogen.  So, anyway, do yourself a favor and go see your doctor after surgery so they can help you avoid the Emergency Room bill!
 
~Christina Update~ As most of you have read my friend Christina was denied for surgery by Aetna because she wasn't on a physician supervised weight loss program for 6 months prior to submitting her claim.  Well, she has since sent in a very wonderful appeal letter and the doctor's office sent in some more information to the insurance company on her behalf and now we are waiting to see if she is approved or not.  But last night Christina had to go to the hospital for a sleep study to determine if she has sleep apnea or another related problem.  So, my mom and I met her at the hospital and we watched American Idol (go Kelly!!) and then she got hooked up to all the electrodes.  Now I had no idea what to expect, but I certainly did not expect for her to look like something out of Star Trek.  She's going to kill me for telling you this, but she had about 15 electrodes stuck to her head and about 5 taped to her face and chin and 2 more on her chest.  I don't know how in the world a person is supposed to sleep with all that crap on them.  I haven't talked to her yet this morning to see how it went, but as soon as I know I'll let you know.  Sorry Christina, but enquiring minds want to know!!  So don't kill me ok!?!?!?  :o)
 
I have so many other things to tell you, but I think they will have to wait for the next entry.  Have a great day!!

September 6, 2002
 
Hola!!  I have some exciting news!!  Ok, first and foremost prepare yourself for a Christina update....(you should be able to hear the drum roll in your head!!) she was diagnosed with mild sleep apnea after her sleep study, but since she is having surgery she doesn't have to be on any machines.  Don't let your eyes fool you, you did just read that she is having surgery!!!  She was approved on Tuesday!!  It didn't even take her sleep study to have Aetna approve reverse it's decision and approve her for surgery, she wrote a wonderful letter and that's what did it.  I am going to see if she'll let me publish it on this site so if you ever have to write an appeal letter you can use hers as a guide.  So, my bestest friend in the WHOLE world is having surgery on October 23rd!  I am SO exctited for her.  I know that she'll be nervous, but she'll be fine!  The cool thing (at least it's cool to me) is that she is having surgery on my 11 month anniversary!  You know it just occured to me that I need to think of something really cool to do to celebrate my one year anniversary.  Any ideas??  I would like to go to Athens or maybe London, but I need to be realistic.  Maybe I'll just go to Hawaii!! :o)  Anyway, time for a Jamie update....(can you still hear the drums rolling??)  I am down to 190 pounds, that's a total of 153 pounds gone forever!!  I bought a size 14 pair of jeans the other day that I didn't even try on because I thought they would be too small, but as of this morning they fit!!  WOOHOO!!  I must say that I have been buying clothes left and right lately.  Last week I bought 4 new shirts, 2 pairs of jeans, a bathing suit, and 2 pairs of shoes!  I love Burlington Coat Factory!!  I don't even feel like I am spending that much money.  I need to slow down though, because I am not going to be able to wear the things I bought that long anyway.  It's exciting and depressing at the same time because I really like the things that I bought!
 
~COOL FACT~ According to Dr. Marema's office their goal weight for me was 155 pounds, so do the math, that's only 35 more pounds to go to make them happy.  I on the other hand would like to go to 140 or so.  That's my goal and the cool thing is that it doesn't feel like it's out of my reach! Yeah for me!
 
Oh, yeah I almost forgot.  I have an appointment with a plastic surgeon on September 16th.  Her name is Dr. Royce she was recommended to me by an ER nurse at my mom's hospital.  Apparently a lot of the ER nurses have had work done through her and are very happy with the results!!  I am so excited!  I am going to have breast augmentation, a tummy tuck, and hopefully have my thighs done.  I am not really going to have a tummy tuck, but just have the excess skin removed without cutting the muscles.   I don't want to mess with the muscles because I want to have kids one day and I don't want my muscles to tear.  I am so ready for this!!  I hope that you can sense my excitement through these words because it almost brings tears to my eyes thinking about how I have almost come full circle.  This time last year I was fat and miserable.  Now I am closer to my goal weight than I ever thought I would be and I am going to be able to have plastic surgery!  Thank you Lord!!  I do really feel like I am becoming a butterfly.  What an amazing trasformation!
 
That's really all I have to share for now.  I will keep you updated on Christina's progress and I will let you know what the plastic surgeon says!
 
P.S.  For all of those that have emailed me recently, I am sorry it is taking me so long to answer, but don't fret, I promise I will write you back!! Thanks for being patient!! :o)

September 23, 2002
 
Happy 10 month anniversary to me, to me!!  I can't believe that it has almost been a year since my surgery!  My how time flies when you are busy losing 150 plus pounds!!  First I will give you the shopping update....I bought my very first shirt (size Large) from The Limited last weekend, hello, The Limited!! WOW!  I used to walk by that store and think some day that will be me and now it is!!  I even tried on a black wrap around dress (size Large) and it fit, but my was it expensive!!  I am getting to the point now where I am too small for Lane Bryant (Hallelujah!!!), but I am still not quite small enough to wear a 14 in other stores.  I'm just at that unhappy middle of the road point right now.  I have come to the conclusion that I must start exercising at least 3 or 4 times a week if I am ever going to get the rest of this weight off.  I feel kind of like the surgery has done all it's going to do and the rest is up to me.  That's not so bad since the surgery took off over 150 pounds and all I have to do is a measley 30 pounds.  Right?!?!??!  That's what I have to keep telling myself!
 
Anyway, on to a Christina update~~  She is scheduled for surgery at 7am on October 23rd and I can't wait!!  The only catch that we just found out about today is that she has to pay part of what her insurance won't cover before they'll even do her pre-op testing.  That bites especially since she has to have the money in 2 weeks and she just now found out about it.  She is going to call the hospital tomorrow and find out exactly what is expected of her.  I think it's stupid and it's just another way for the hospital to put the screws to bariatric patients.  Since they consider this an elective surgery that's why money is due up front.  I guess that should be some comfort if you had cancer or something they might not make you pay for your chemo ahead of time.  They could be nice and offer a buy one treatment get one treatment free deal.  It just makes me so mad that all they care about is the money and not the patient's well being.  Ok, ok, I'm stepping off my soap box now!  :o)
 
On to the plastic surgery update....I am scheduled for surgery on December 18!!!  I am having breast augmentation with a full lift and a tummy tuck.  I am beyond excited!!  Dr. Royce was FABULOUS!!  I just loved her to pieces!!  Her personality was great and she really knows her stuff.  I felt completely comfortable and confident in her the second I met her.  She went over everything so I could understand it and she explained her positions on different procedures and why she does things the way she does.  All I can say is I was totally impressed and now I am going to be able to complete my transformation before Christmas!!  YIPPEE!!  I am so excited, I can hardly wait!!  If you live in the Sarasota/Bradenton area and are interested in meeting the most wonderful female plastic surgeon, please call Dr. Jacqueline Royce in Bradenton at 792-5384 or in Sarasota at 365-4619.  Trust me, you will not be disapointed!!
 
I have added a new page to the site called September Beach Pictures.  Christina and I went to dinner the other night and stopped at the beach and I got to be a camera hog and pose for some pictures.  I didn't expect them to turn out that great, but most of them turned out ok.  I owe it all to my world famous photographer Christina aka Kika!!  Take a look and see what you think.  I am wearing the new shirt I got at The Limited and size 14 jeans from Lane Bryant.  I also added a new picture to my Before and After page if you care to see it.
 
Ok, I know I may be a little obsessive, but I can't help it.  The new Bachelor show starts tomorrow and I can't wait to watch it.  I hope it was as good as the first one!!  Also, congrats to Kelly for winning American Idol!  As cute as Justin was he just didn't have Kelly's talent.  They are all coming to Tampa in concert next month and as much as I'd like to go I think I'll sit this one out.  I think I'd be about 10 or 12 years older than most of the people there and I just don't need to feel that old!! :o)
 
I hope you are all doing well!!  Please feel free to sign my guestbook or send me an email!! I would love to hear from you and although it might take me a few days, I do return all the emails I receive!!  TAKE CARE!!