Friday, April 26, 2013


It doesn't seem to matter how much weight you lose, for some of us, that body hatred doesn't just go away. I can look at my before and after pictures and see that I have lost a massive amount of weight, yet some days, I still feel like it will never be enough.

Despite losing weight, unfortunately I am not going to magically love my body and let go of the 25+ years of self-loathing. I don't want to hate my body anymore and I wish I didn't hate it before I lost weight too.

I am finding that learning to love my body is something I have to actively work on every day. I am trying to do this by:
  • Eating foods that make me feel energised, satisfied and happy
  • Wearing clothes that make me feel confident and attractive
  • Not weighing myself
  • Exercising to make my body feel stronger and not depleting it of all energy and strength
  • Accepting my body for the way it looks today and not how it could look in the future

Sometimes ice cream helps too...


Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Post-Op Swelling

Last Friday night I spent my first night in the new house I have recently built. I won't actually be moving in there (my mum is) but I needed to spend the weekend there to deal with all the tradies that were coming by to do the driveway, light installations, deliveries and curtain measurements. I don't actually have any furniture in the house yet, but I thought I would be fine to sleep on the floor. What a mistake...

I should have remembered that I am still sore and swollen from body lift surgery and that I selected the cheapest carpet option for the house, so I was essentially sleeping on a concrete slab. Not only have I been in a world of pain since then, I have been super swollen. You should see the marks my knickers are leaving on me from digging into my swollen hips and back.

My 'bed' on the floor
Anyway, this new swelling reminded me to post some of my attempts at reducing my swelling after I first had my body lift surgery.

The first thing I tried was a 3 day juice cleanse. I had read that increasing fluids and fruits and vegetables could help the process and I figured it might also help shift a bit of post-Christmas weight too. There was one particular juice cleanse that I had seen positively reviewed on a few Australian blogs last year so I thought I would give it a try-- even though it was very expensive.

Oh my god, big lesson learnt, do not always trust reviews from people who are paid to give them. Not only were the juices revolting, but I was S-T-A-R-V-I-N-G! This is coming from someone who has survived 8 weeks on optifast shakes.

I only lasted through to dinner time on the first day and then I gave up and the rest of the juices went in the bin. Not only were the juices a big waste of money, they also screwed me around big time. I had to leave work at 3.00 pm for my scheduled delivery time of 4.00 - 6.00 pm. After numerous phonecalls the juices were finally delivered at 11.45 pm. So I had to leave work early for no reason, wait around the house almost 6 hours and then stay up till late (on a work night) to get these stupid things. Not a great experience!

This was the first one I tried, cos lettuce and avocado, or something disgusting like that!
I had much higher hopes for my next attempt at reducing my swelling because it all sounded very scientific. I purchased one of those Groupon like email deals that go around for lymphatic activation that promised the following:
Your first hour-long session, combined with a second 45-minute treatment, will activate your lymphatic system (a small network of vessels and nodes) to stimulate circulation, detoxify the body and release fluid. Using three revolutionary machines, the treatments assist with weight loss, provide pain and stress relief and ensure you get a fantastic night's sleep.
I like to think of myself as open minded, but this treatment seemed to be a lot of hocus pocus. First the guy gave me a presentation on how jumping on a special little trampoline every day can cure cancer and actually cured a baby who was brain dead. Funnily enough, I could buy one from him for hundreds of dollars...
Next up he measured my energy on what I can only describe as a lightsaber, that he was then able to tell me how he could sell me supplements to help me with whatever was wrong with my energy (I can't remember what he said was wrong with me anymore).

Me with the 'lightsaber'

Finally, I was put inside a SOQI bed for half an hour that was supposed to assist with lymphatic activation. It was actually quite relaxing laying on the bed under the heat lamps with my legs being vibrated. I have doubts that it did anything for me because I didn't feel any different, but maybe if I took all those supplements, jumped on the little trampoline, and purchased the 10 week course of treatments that the guy recommended it would work... or maybe not.
The SOQI bed
In the end, I think the only thing that really works for swelling after surgery seems to be wearing the compression garments, resting and eating a healthy diet. Oh and not doing anything stupid like sleeping on a cement slab!

Friday, April 12, 2013

A Much Needed Fill

I hadn't had my lap band properly filled back up since I had fluid removed for my body lift surgery. It was so much fun eating normal foods and being able to eat with friends and family without the fear of getting food stuck in the band. Alas, I have stacked on the weight big time!

I was going to go into all the individual reasons why I have gained weight, but it's basically because I have an eating disorder and I will eat and eat and eat until I am physically sick. It's such a horrible disorder to have-- the panic over making sure you will have enough food, the sneaking around so people don't see how much you are eating and then the self-hatred afterwards. So I am hoping that adding some fluid to my band will help me.

I went to a local GP who does fills for free, rather than my band clinic which is too annoying to get to, and had 0.3 mls added. This give me 5.8 mls in a 10 ml lap band. One scary thing to note is that the doctor really struggled to find my port to give me the fill. My body lift surgery has caused all the scars from the lap band surgery to move, which makes it difficult for doctors to know where my port is located. He thought my bottom rib was the port, but luckily I spoke up (for once) and said that it didn't feel right. Phew!

I can feel the difference the fill has made, but I am still one hungry little hippo. So now I am contemplating going back for more fluid next week. Which will put me in an awkward place where my band is too tight for regular healthy foods and make eating normally in restaurants with friends difficult... but will hopefully help somewhat with the hunger.

I feel almost scared by how much I want to eat, but I hate the limitations it puts on eating lean meats and vegetables when it is tight. I don't have the answers*. I guess I just need to choose the lesser of two evils...

* When I wrote that I got the Mad About You theme song stuck in my head.

Monday, April 08, 2013

5 Months Post Body Lift

On the 6th April 2013 it was 5 months since I had my body lift surgery. I don't have anything new to report, but I did want to give an update on how I am feeling now.

I am still a little tender on my lower back. When I press on the area it feels like I am bruised, but it doesn't stop me doing much. The other place I am a little tender is my outer thighs and they still hurt when I try to jog (which is not something I try often). I think these areas are still sore from the lipo because neither area had any incisions.

The incision around my body really doesn't hurt at all and it has stayed 100% healed. I am still quite numb for about two inches above my scar and 1 inch below it on my stomach area. I know that there is a possibility that some numbness will stay forever, but this really doesn't bother me at all and I barely notice it.

To give you an idea of how I am moving about these days, I just returned from a 2 week trip to Thailand where I was able to swim, snorkle, walk up steep jungle hills, hoist myself in and out of boats and keep up with my 3 holiday companions. I will say that I noticed a huge loss in ab strength, but I think this might be my fault because I wasn't able to do many ab work outs in the last few months because my lower back has been too tender. I really need to work on this because having an active holiday really shows you how much you depend on your abs to support you in everything you do.

I stopped wearing my silicone tape around my scar before I went on holidays to Thailand. I knew that it wouldn't stay on with all the swimming I would be doing so I took it off and I haven't missed it at all. I think you can continue to wear the tape longer to help with scarring, but I am already really happy with how my scar looks.

I still have no regrets about having the surgery and am thankful every day for the freedom it has given me. I do still sometimes go to reach for my stomach skin because I was so used to having it hanging off me. I guess it's like losing a limb... but in a good way! One of my favourite things since having the surgery is not having to dry underneath my stomach after I have a shower. It is just the best feeling in the world!

I do still really want to have the upper body lift surgery now, but it is not even on my financial radar at the moment. I think it is approximately $10,000 out of pocket and since I have just built a new house I am completely tapped out of cash. I have been trying to get a better paying job for a while, but that hasn't happened, so my next step is to look for part time work that I can do outside my regular job to save some money for the surgery. Obviously I would not have spent money on a trip to Thailand if I had known I needed more surgery, but that is too late now!

I can't bear to post more nudey before and after pictures so please see my 4 month update if you are interested and just reading this for the first time!