Thursday, February 24, 2011

Mind Games

Hello, I'm Dwan and I am a food addict.

I have not been as sure of this as I am now. This last week has been a huge struggle. I am so grateful that I had the Sleeve Gastrectomy. This has helped me make it through this week.

These last few days I have gained weight. My mind tells me it is water weight. My body does this. I know this after all the crazy diets I have put it on, it is in major defense mode right now. My water intake has decreased, so my body is freaking out and holding onto the water it does have. I KNOW this, BUT my mind is still having a hard time with it. Fortunately, now that my stomach only holds about 4-6 ounces, I am forced to continue doing what I need to do to lose weight.

Let me give you some examples of the mind games going on this week. First day of getting the weight gain news was Sunday. Its not a huge weight gain, only 1.5 lbs. But discouraging none-the-less. All day Sunday my mind kept telling me I was hungry about every two hours. I forced myself to wait four hours before I ate. My body does not tell me I am hungry, as the hunger hormone was cut out. I do not physically feel hungry. This was completely in my mind. I know this, but I have no control over it. I have never had more empathy for my alcoholic friends before than I do now. Because I happen to be able to afford to do something about it, I am forced to not eat like my mind was telling me to. Hallelujah!!

The next day I did not lose or gain any weight, but I struggled all day with eating. This might also be because I am home and have the opportunity to eat freely. The next struggle. I make my small meal, but my mind tells me that there is no way I am going to be satisfied with that small amount of food. So I add an extra spoonful. Again I am grateful for the surgery as it prevents me from eating that extra spoonful, as I am completely full with the small portion.

Tuesday comes, my first post-op doctors appointment. I weigh in at the doctors at 290.0. This is 22 lbs less than my first appointment weight, but only 2 lbs less than my pre-op weigh in. My blood pressure was down. 136/80 I think it was. This is about average for me.

Now for the real test. I am out and I am hungry. I decide I am going to have my favorite meal at Olive Garden. Steak Gorgonzola. You might remember that this was also my last meal I had out before my pre-op diet. I tell the waitress, I know this might sound weird but since my stomach can only hold about 4 ounces, I am still going to order the entrée but I want the soup to go and the bread sticks to go and I will eat my small portion of the entrée but then I will take most of it to go as well. I ate a very very small portion of the meal, and took most of it home with me. I thought I actually did pretty well at my first attempt at eating out.

I will mention that I chew all of my food extremely well. This is something that I have attempted to do over the years, but have never really succeeded in doing. I probably chewed more than some people, but I know it wasn't as good as I should. Now I chew my food the way I should chew it. I think this will be very helpful.

When I knew I really had a problem

My kids ordered pizza. Yummy yummy pizza. I took the smallest slice. The crust was probably about 3-4 inches wide at the widest. Probably about 5-6 inches long. I knew this was bigger than my 4-6 ounces I can eat, but I figured I would eat til I was full and put the rest back. I was able to eat about half of it. This from the center towards the crust so in total less than half of the slice. But my mind told me it did not want to stop eating. I knew I would not be able to eat another bite as the last bite hurt after I ate it. This is a good sign that I am completely full. I was so determined to eat that pizza I came up with this great idea. I would chew the pizza then spit it out. This lasted two more bites, then I thought to myself "What the hell is wrong with you!!" How sick do I have to be that I would resort to this. Eating it just so I could spit it out? This is definitely an eating disorder. How is that different than eating and purging? Only difference was I spit it out before I swallowed it.

Now the weird thing is I did try to vomit earlier in the week. I ate something that disagreed with me. I heard some of the ladies saying that when they felt that uncomfortable they would just vomit. I tried. It was the weirdest feeling. Nothing came out. It was like dry heaving, except that I knew there was something there. So lesson learned. Do not eat anything that will disagree with you as you will have to suffer the time it takes for it to digest on its own. I mention this to the doctor and he said in time I will be able to vomit. Not that I would want to vomit, just that I would like to know that if I needed to I could. Of course, my mind went right to ingesting poison. What if somehow I ingested poison but couldn't vomit? This has never happened to me in 44 years that I know of, but somehow this is a concern for me now. How is this logical?

One other thing I noticed that I do not like. I burp a lot. This is very unladylike. I am not sure why, but when I eat, as soon as it hits my stomach it produces gas. This is something that has happened right from the beginning and happens when I drink water as well. I am not sure if this will go away after awhile or if its something I am just going to have to live with.

Good news for today. The scale did move. Not much but I am ok with that. I am just glad it moved down. I figured it was because yesterday was the first day I actually left the house. The inside incision (not the stomach but the one in the muscle) still hurts a little. I worried about driving, but seem to do ok with it yesterday and today. Today was also my first day back at work. I am only working part time in the afternoon, which works out perfectly for me.

Bad news for today. A client came in and we were talking about just coming back to work after surgery and she mentioned that she got a tummy tuck a few years back and would never do it again as she was in so much pain after the surgery. I figured it would have to be painful and figured it could muster through it, but she said it pained her for 2-3 weeks. This is scary for me. OH well .. we will see what happens in the next couple of years, maybe they will come up with something new!

God has blessed me with giving me a way to physically deal with these mind games. Now I just need to figure out how to mentally deal with them.

Love to all of you who support me in my journey!


  1. You have to understand that it has taken you 20,30???years to gain the weight and have the mentality of eating what you want. You have a strong consitution so it is without doubt you will do great. Take it one day at a time.

    Love you,
    Aunt Brenda

  2. Thanks Aunt Brenda.. It really means a lot to me to know I have your support! Love you!!