Anything is Possible

I often have to remind myself:
It’s not entirely your fault you were fat.

This may sound like a huge justification or rationalization, but it’s not. It’s a rejection of a lifetime of shame. Of being called lazy.

It’s funny, someone who blamed me and my weight problem on the simple fact that I ate too much, is now, or was, severely overweight with heart trouble. Hm. Ain’t that easy, is it?

Karma’s a bitch. But I won’t be. You shall remain anonymous. You’re welcome. I hope you can get some help. For your heart and mind.

December 12th, 2016–I had gastric bypass.

At my heaviest, I weighed 513 lbs. I’m currently at 280.4 lbs. Lowest weight to date since August 2012. That’s ~233 lbs lost for those without a calculator, superior math skills or too busy for subtraction of the hundreds column. 😀

233 lbs. Major.

When I met with my weight loss surgeon for the first time in August of 2016, he told me something significant.

“You have a genetic disorder that requires surgical intervention.”

He believed that. And I believe it now, too. Thank you, Doctor. You gave me my life back. In so many ways.

No one gets to be 513 on their own. No one. A series of events have to happen for a person to gain 300+ lbs over their ideal range.

Genetic predisposition to obesity. Bad eating habits established by the age of 5. Lack of nutrition or access to a quality food source. Misinformation about dieting. Emotional chaos at home and at school. Thyroid. Gallbladder. Disease. Surgery. Sickness. Pregnancy. Teasing. Shaming. Cruel humor from your own family. Being misunderstood. Culture.

I can tell you one thing. Stop shaming fat people. It doesn’t help. Sympathetic, empathetic, emotional support for obese people is the only way to help them. If they want it! Demanding better food from food suppliers and the government; supporting a system of a better food source for the general population, for everyone, is a start. Being educated helps. Actual involvement in an overweight person’s life is essential. Compassion and understanding are needed. Listening is key. Stop judging fat people. Chances are you know someone who is overweight. They aren’t lazy. They have a medical problem. What’s your reason for being a self-righteous asshole?

And exercise isn’t the only answer. I haven’t exercised regularly through my whole weight loss journey, especially since I had gastric bypass. I haven’t always been able to. I’ve simply reduced my calorie intake. I am more active, but only when I choose to be. I bike, but not with a rigid, unchanging schedule. I bike and walk when I enjoy it.

I exercised and dieted for over 2 years. Worked out for 3-5 nights a week at the local Y for at least an hour each time. Usually, I was there at the Y for 2 hours. I ate the right foods in the right amounts. I couldn’t get past ~60 lb loss until I had gastric bypass. And then it FELL off. I was killing myself doing what skinny people told me to do with my body. It didn’t work.

I used to think it was a matter of willpower because that’s what every skinny person ever told me. Until my surgeon.

LISTEN! It could mean the difference between life and death for someone. I would know.

Get surgery if you’ve tried everything. You may have some other condition preventing weight loss. At least see a physician who specializes in obese patients. It may just save your life.

Fight for yourself. Advocate for yourself. No one else will.


BTW! I can wear size 22 jeans! LOL What? I can zip them up after I pour all my floppy skin into the legs. WTF???! I haven’t worn size 22 jeans in a long time. 😀 That’s hawt! They are a pair of 22 jean capris that a weight loss surgery patient gave me after they were too big. Thank you, Friend! I’m in them now! Still losing. I will pass them on when I’m done!

Hello, Gorgeous! Here I come 270s!! Bye, bye, Shamers! I’m too busy for you.

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Tiny Bites

You must live life in tiny bites
Not just one big meal
The individual elements
All lead to the big reveal

If you rush the course, you’ll miss, of course
The grandest of smallest detail
Prepared with careful hands and eyes
Crafted to perfection without fail

You’ll miss the sunrise, the moon and stars,
The beautiful changing tide,
The slowest snail or unmarked trail,
The hidden mountainside

Good food and life are causes to
Celebrate, commune, rejoice
What good is gobbling down
A lonely plate of misery’s choice

You must take your time, slowly chew
Savor every single bit
Swallow too fast or take a big gulp
You’re going to choke on it

S’morgies

We pimped our triple chocolate brownies last night with chocolate chips and melted marshmallows on top. Crazy good!

smorgies 2.jpg
An orgy of chocolate and mallow.

I had a small portion and it did not go down well. These are the first brownies I’ve had since surgery. But it tasted so awesome. No more for me, but my family loved it. 😀

My husband suggested graham cracker crumbles or a Teddy Graham on top. Good idea! Then they would truly be S’more-like.

Exorcism

I’ve got many demons.

Food addiction. PTSD. Depression. Self-esteem issues. Trust issues. Pride. Over-blown sense of fairness. Fear of people. Fear of intimacy.

These are all residuals from abuse, triggers or coping mechanisms. Haunting ghosts. My demons were born of circumstance and pain. Called upon before the age of 5. Schooled in my weakness. Summoned as experts of how to tempt, specifically, me. These are the things that will cause me to stumble and hold me back from fulfilling my purpose and destiny.

I imagine each demon:
black, faceless, with their name written across their chest, written across my existence, swirling, whispering, flowing around my body.

Floating me down some river of negativity. Holding me under from God’s intention for my life. Drowning me in doubt.

Or will they drive me to my purpose? Will I kick and spit and fight until I fly?


To my demons: Yes. I will overcome you. And in doing so, fulfill prophecy and promise. You have no idea who you’re dealing with–God.

You don’t like mayo? Why?

Our good friend, Craig, used to tell us about a specific kind of person. The kind of person who would inquire about your preferences and then immediately call them into question. He would use this example:

“You don’t like mayonnaise?? Why?”

How about, “I just DON’T!” LOL

I used to love mayo. LOVE. Couldn’t eat a sandwich without mayo. I would gag at the thought of dry bread, meat and cheese. In fact, I used to eat Miracle Whip when I was a kid. Couldn’t eat balonie sandwiches without Miracle Whip. Salad dressing of the Gods!

A few years ago, I started to eat mayo, not MW. Miracle Whip started to have more of a gasoline flavor associated with it and mayo seemed so much creamier. Funny how tastes change. Especially when you’re in charge of buying the mayo.

NOW?! UGH! Please don’t put mayo or MW on my sandwich. I have completely converted to non-mayo sandwiches. I prefer mustard these days. Any type of mustard, but usually just plain-old yellow mustard.

I used to slather anything in butter or mayo. Or ranch–the new ketchup!! Now? The thought of mayo makes me sick. Which makes me so sad. I think it’s my gastric bypass or my gall bladder removal. I have no idea. But I hate mayo now. Can’t stomach the idea of it. In fact, I can’t really tolerate many fats these days.

I’m leaning towards the fact that I don’t have a GB is the problem. Mainly because the gall bladder processes all the fats in your body. Sort of. And I read that GB removal can cause problems with fat digestion. But so can gastric bypass! Who knows. Probably a combo. But here’s the deal.

The liver is producing the bile that digests fats. The gall bladder stores the bile and releases it when you eat. Well, I don’t have a gall bladder any more. So, my liver has to produce enough bile to digest the fats, on demand. Your liver doesn’t usually produce enough bile on demand to eat most fattening food like butter, mayo or oil-based products. Can’t store bile in my non-existent GB, right? You follow?

Therefore, I really have to limit fats. Especially fried foods! For whatever reason. That’s fine! Mayo just sends my tummy into flip-flops. Hold the egg, hold the oil. Hold the fries! I usually get squeamish around anything fried lately. Just knowing it’s going to cause problems.

Oh well. I must accept this change. No matter how concerning and disappointing. It’s healthier. It’s less calories. It’s totally not going to hurt me. It’s a blessing.

I am officially old. LOL How could someone become intolerant of the blandest food on the planet? But that’s okay. Mayo be gone! Bring on the dijon. And broccoli. And melba toast.

Oh, and my new favorite veggie? Edamame!! Plain. I am totally an old person. 😀 They are like giant lentils. Yum! Put it in a casserole. Eat it steamed. Simmer in stock. Slurp! Crunch! Yum. Just don’t get mayo near my pods.

322.8

I keep forgetting to post today about my weight loss. I am at 322.8 today. So down a few this week!

I feel good. No major problems right now. Seem to be doing okay on my meds. It’s pretty stable right now and I’m thankful for a breather.

I’m in the 320s!! That feels great. I can’t believe I’m staring down the barrel at the 200s. 😀 Can’t wait!

I hope some nice, rich stranger or crazy reality TV show is willing to pay for my skin surgery. I would hope that the excess skin goes to good use. Like puppet-making or leather coat manufacturing. Don’t waste it!

I could make a killer handbag out of my gut meat apron. Is that weird??

Reduce, reuse, recycle. Right?

I don’t think this is any weirder than mothers eating their own placenta. Gah! Why?

Would you use liposuction soap? Soap made from the excess fat of humans? Sucked from their bodies? Made by Tyler Durden. lol

Sorry.

Hot Cheetos and Takis (Orange Is the New Black)

**SMALL, INFINITESIMAL PLOT POINT SPOILER ALERT FOR OITNB**

So. I’m white. As if you didn’t know. I’m an old, white lady who don’t know what Takis is.


(Ya burnt! is my favorite saying now.)


Or I didn’t until this season of Orange Is the New Black. I’m sorry if my watching OITNB is offensive to anyone, but it’s such a good show. The stories. Ugh, the stories. It makes me cry multiple times during the season. I’m hooked. I often wonder if I could make it on the inside and what compromises I would have to make to my ideology or person to survive.

Sometimes, I wish I was one of the ladies. Until I see a bathroom scene and then I go worship my very clean toilet and shower and bathtub. What I really wish is to be an actress on this show. It would so totally rock. Dream job. So juicy.

But I think if I identify with a character, it would be Red. Most people would say I’m the nun that left the show. But inside? I’m a Red. She’s kicking it! Love her. So spicy. Just like Takis!

After watching this season (small spoiler alert), I had to try Takis. What the hell is a Taki? I found them at the store, here in Florida. Never seen them before, but as of late, haven’t been looking at fried corn snacks for nourishment. But I had to at least taste them to see what all the fuss is about.

I would riot for Takis. Jus’ sayin’. They are delicious. Guy and I split a small bag.

I think I’m going to make a Chex Mix-Taki trail mix. Does that sound super white? Sorry. But as I said, I am an old, white lady. So what else would be good with Cheddar Chex Mix and Takis all jumbled together? Any suggestions? Can’t wait to hear what your ideas are. In honor of OITNB, I could make a watch party mix with Hot Cheetos in there as well.

Hit me with your Taki takes!

Super Morbidly Obese

I am not obese. I am not morbidly obese. I am super morbidly obese. That title comes with a cape and tights. That no one wants you to wear.

#SuperMartha

I think superheros who are super morbidly obese have a hard time flying. My powers are eating. And being funny. Except now my Kryptonite is food. Can’t hardly eat anything any more. That’s okay. I still have that being funny thing.

I AM super morbidly obese, but just so. I am on the cusp of becoming just regular, old morbidly obese. Super morbid is 50 and above and I’m just at 50. That shouldn’t feel so good, but it does. I was at a 76 BMI. So, yeah. Lost 26 BMI points. Phew.

I’m about to lose my super. Then I’ll just be a plain-old hero. Right?

I’m okay with that.

It’s a bird! It’s a plane! NO! It’s Super Martha! Duh-tuh-ta-da! :*

 

Twisted, Sister

I am eating healthy. I am exercising (stairs/cleaning/non-stop unpacking/moving boxes/cooking/laundry/beach walking/shell hunting–does that count?). I am doing all the right things. And I’m not losing weight.

We just moved from KC to Florida. It’s been hectic and my eating hasn’t always been what it should be, but! I am not eating too much. I can’t. I get very full at the drop of a sandwich and I just can’t physically put much food in my stomach. My stomach is still so tiny after surgery. So, why no weight loss?

I ran out of my furosemide. Generic Lasix. Water pill.

We lost our insurance at the end of May. My husband left his job and we just don’t have insurance yet. I was too busy to call the doctor or see someone before I left Missouri. So, I’m out. I know, I know! But. I had good reasoning for this decision. Let me explain.

I went on furosemide almost 5 years ago. It was a miracle drug. It helped me drop massive chunks of weight. The first week I lost over 30 lbs. I was full of juice. I was at 513 pounds and I dropped like a rock as soon as they gave it to me.

I was in the ER, diagnosed within hours, “Ms. Maggio, we think you have congestive heart failure.” They immediately gave me an IV. Pumped Lasix in and the juice came out! Immediately! I almost did not make it to the bathroom it was so fast. I lost over 10 lbs. of liquid (probably more) the first 3 days in the hospital. I felt like I could fly!

So I was released with a dose of generic Lasix that I have taken steadily since 2012. I was even put on two pills in 2014. After weight loss surgery last December, my surgeon took me off furosemide. No dose. Not sure of his reasoning, other than he knew I wouldn’t be getting the water intake I needed, at first. But I wasn’t losing like I should. So his partner put me back on one dose. That seemed to do the trick.

I can usually tell if I’m retaining water. My feet swell. I’ve learned to keep an eye on my feet. That’s typically the first sign. Obvs. It’s the lowest point in your body. That’s where liquid is going to go. Thanks, Gravity. Plus, with poor circulation (Thanks, Heart Failure!) that’s where most of the liquid is going to stay. I usually have cold hands and feet, too.

So, since I’ve run out of my furosemide, I’m retaining more water. It’s nothing like ER Martha at 513 lbs. My feet had ballooned to 3 times their normal size. Scary! That’s one reason why I headed to the ER. Nothing like that. I can just tell, I’m a little squishy.

So, I’m going to call one of my Missouri doctors today and see if they can help me out until I can find a primary care physician here. Without insurance yet, that could be tricky.

Thankfully! I am doing okay. Still have great energy. More than ever. I still have all my other meds. I was trying to get off the furosemide anyway and my doctors agreed. Plus, I have not gained any weight! That’s the great part. I’ve just stalled. I thought I was losing, but no. Every day I wake up and it’s the same.

True, I could be in a plateau. I hit one before. It happens. But I am doing everything I can to break it. Eating even less than what I’m hungry for (usually never hungry, but I am lately more hungry at night due to more activity during the day). I want to break this plateau, if that’s what it is. I want to only drink water. Working on it. I mostly do, but I like an occasional low- or no-calorie soft drink. Like half a mini Coke or Crystal Light.

I also feel my carb addiction creeping back in. I love carbs. Pasta, flour, cereal. I don’t really eat these, but I have a weakness for bread. I take little bites of a roll and I only have one, especially if we are eating out and they have free bread or something. But it’s so tempting to eat the whole friggin’ basket. I couldn’t even if I said, “Yes, more bread please!” as I wiped the crumbs from my very-full cheeks. I would totally throw it up or have to find the nearest bathroom and be miserable for hours. No, thank you. Plus, it would just stop up the whole works for days! So, I can limit, but I shouldn’t have it at all! AT! ALL! NEVER!

I am back on the straight and narrow. Mainly because I want to see that scale keep moving. I have a finite window here to lose most of it and I am very aware of that clock. It’s 12-18 months. It’s different for everyone. I went through hell to get that surgery and I’m not going to waste it.

Over the past few days, I’ve been back to salads, eating lean and limiting portions. It’s not hard, I just had to get my head back in the game and really focus. Moving just spun my head around like a Twister dial and my brain landed on all four colors.

This morning I am right back where I was when I left KC, 338.2 lbs. THAT is nothing to sneeze at! It used to be, my weight fluctuated drastically from day to day. 10 lbs. or more. So THIS is good. Not great, but okay! 🙂

Back on the very strict wagon! But glad to be here.