Now that I'm about a month into this process, I figured I would give you guys an update on how this whole process is progressing. I will assure you - it is not speeding right along, but things are developing...at a snail's pace.
My first day of meetings was September 9th. My initial meetings with a nurse, a doctor and a psychologist went well. They all granted their initial support to my cause, and allowed me to move onto the next stage. I conducted my at home sleep study, failed miserably and had to go to the hospital for an overnight sleep test. (see last post for that whole fiasco)
My next round of appointments was a follow-up with the doctor to go over my blood tests. My body continued to astound everyone by continuing to avoid diabetes, even though it runs on both sides of my family. I continue to be the healthiest (internally, anyway) morbidly obese person I know. No major issues except a couple of lower levels that can be corrected with additional vitamins. I am currently taking 4 different types of vitamins, with more to come. I think this is payback for mocking my parents for the volume of vitamins they take. It's karma. =)
I also had my first appointment with my nutritionist. We went over my 3 day food diary and picked out just a couple of areas for improvement - and by a couple I mean a trillion. We went over a few goals for me to work on - basically cooking my own food, and not continuing to eat nothing but crap. I was told there was no reason to continue with my "bon voyage" tour to foods I like, as I'll be able to eat pretty much whatever I want after the surgery - just less, and not as frequently - but there is no "forbidden" list, which made me rest easy. Having a list of things I can't have - like when I was trying Slimgenics - just makes me rebel eventually. Although I know I'll have major changes to make, and will need to eat much more healthy than I have typically done over the last 20+ years - it's comforting to know I'll still be able to live a somewhat normal life. The only major limitation they've discuss so far is that they'd like me to go 1 year without drinking alcohol. That could prove to be a bit of an issue - - but I do imbibe much less frequently than I used to - so I think I can do it. Plus, I don't recover like I used to - - so it won't be so bad.
A few days later I had my follow-up with the sleep clinic where I received my CPAP machine. Somewhat terrifying - but now that I've been using it for almost 2 weeks, I can honestly say I don't mind it. I still have to tell myself to chill the hell out every night when I put it on. Even though my brain knows I'm going to be able to breathe just fine - I still take about 15-30 seconds of deep breathing to relax a bit and trust it. It is amazing how much better I sleep. I still have nights where I sleep over 8 hours - but they said that is pretty standard. But I don't need to spend extra time in bed trying to get a reasonable amount of sleep, because I'm up 7 times a night. It's definitely saving me some time, and I do feel so much more rested.
I had my 2nd psychologist appointment, and she still thinks I'm a good candidate. The good news is, they haven't put me in a straight jacket. =)
Around this time I was informed of the panels decision regarding weight loss prior to surgery. I need to lose between 50-70 pounds before surgery. I was advised I need to lose at least 30 pounds before getting my appointment with the surgeon, when I will be put on a liquid diet to lose the last 20-30 pounds before surgery. They have scheduled me an appointment with a doctor on staff who can help me lose weight with medication if necessary. The issue is that this isn't included in the prepay cost of the surgery - and my crap insurance won't cover any weight loss programs. I assured them someone that weighs what I do, being as motivated as I am, can lose 30 pounds on my own. I weighed in today and am currently down 14 pounds. I have another appointment with my nutritionist in a month. If I am not losing by then, I can still meet with the doctor a few days later - but I will do it myself. Then I can hopefully get an appointment with the surgeon to get a date set!
So that's where I am - trying to lose some pounds. Trying to move a little bit more. Trying to keep all these damn meetings straight. Slowly plugging along....