Saturday, November 30, 2013

Post-Thanksgiving Weigh-In + Wonderful Day

Wednesday's Weight: 247.2
Today's Weight: 247.0

How the hell did I NOT gain?!  
On Thanksgiving, I did great during the meal.  But it's the leftovers that killed me!
I may have had 2 pieces of Red Velvet Cheesecake for dinner at 8pm Thursday night.

Oops.  Slap my wrist now.  Bad Bander.

Oh well, it's a new day. And what a wonderful day it was.

I woke up early this morning, too early.  I was excited that I'd be seeing Mr. Banker today, so I couldn't sleep in like I would have liked to. Mr. Banker had to work this morning, but came over right after work.  While home for Thanksgiving, I had my dad cut down some mistletoe for me and I carefully placed it above my front door.  Mr. Banker and I walked through the door together several times today, so I got plenty of extra smooches.

I had made lunch, you know what they say...the way to a man's heart is through his stomach.  I made my grandmother's chicken pie, green beans, and home made mashed potatoes.  I wasn't certain my band would tolerate the buttermilk biscuit type crust on top of the pie, but it did and I am quite happy about that.  Yes, I do know I SHOULDN'T eat it, but all in moderation and it will be okay.

After our lunch, we went down the street to a Christmas tree farm (which was in someone's front yard?!?! how strange!!) to pick the tree for my upstairs.  As we began decorating it, Mr. Banker turned on Christmas music and I swear I could not stop smiling.  He kept asking why I had such a silly grin, and I said I just love Christmas that much.  But the truth is, in 5 years of putting up a Christmas tree, no guy I've ever dated has helped me decorate it.  It was so nice having the help, and the fact that he was ENJOYING helping made it that much better.  He even skipped watching football to many guys do you know that would do that?!

 Here's our finished product :)

We finished decorating and watched a little more football before he went home.  AND since tomorrow is December 1, I finally got to reveal his birthday surprise.

Some of you already know my secret, but for those of you who don't:  Since Mr. Banker's birthday is Christmas, and this is a particularly big birthday (30), I decided to do a small gift every day from December 1-24.  On December 25, there will be a bigger gift.  Mr. Banker loved my idea, and I think for a moment, I saw what he would've been like as a seven year old boy because he really was excited.  I sent him home with Days 1-7, and I hope he will play by the rules and not go crazy opening them all at once.  I thought for sure he'd just open them all, but he called after he left my house to thank me again for the gifts, and said he will do it as I asked because he can tell it means a lot to me.  And he's right...I put a lot of thought and effort into this, so that he would have something special every day.

Today was perfect.
I honestly feel more like myself when I am around him than I have ever felt before with a man.

 Since I've promised Mr. Banker that I wont put his photo on my blog, this is the only other picture from yesterday that I can share.
Wrangler is so patient with me...letting me dress him up on game days.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Pre-Thanksgiving weigh in Wednesday

Well....this might be a really bad idea, but I've decided that a pre-Thanksgiving weigh in might help to keep me accountable over the holiday.

While at my parents' house, I will not have a scale though, which scares the crap out of me!
So, I'll weigh in over the weekend when I return and let you all know how it goes.

Also, this is not my lowest weight since surgery, I'm about 5 pounds away from that.  HOWEVER, this is definitely the lowest number I've seen in 2 months, so I'm happy. 3 or 4 weeks ago I literally saw 260.2 one morning and thought I was going to die.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!
Do your best to chew slowly, enjoy what you eat, but don't over eat! :)

Sunday, November 24, 2013

I spilled the beans... more specifically the L word bean...

Hope you all have had a great weekend!  Mine has been awesome :)  Lots of doing nothing with a couple of short runs thrown in, which is exactly what I needed.

Friday morning, I had a text conversation that really touched my heart.  Mr. Banker apologized for how he has treated me during this time that he's been depressed and said that I'm the last person who deserves to receive the bad end of it.  That meant a lot to me, not only was he apologizing, but also acknowledging that I really do a lot for him.  It didn't stop there though, he made sure to call me on his lunch break and say it again, so that I could hear him say it.  I love that.  I have always loved how well he communicates.  Yes, sometimes he shuts down and doesn't say anything.  But when he does speak, I trust what he's saying.  He never apologizes just to pacify me, so from him, I know an apology is genuine.

So after work Friday night, he came over to stay the night.  We drank wine and watched a movie.  Being around him makes me feel so happy and safe.  When we went to bed at midnight, the wine had me falling asleep pretty quickly, but I woke around 2:30am with lovey thoughts swirling around my head.  At this point, it was not the wine and I was fighting the words for almost an hour.  I thought Mr. Banker was asleep, and I wanted to hear those three words out loud, so I just said it.  His back was to me and it felt so good to get the words out.  But, unexpectedly, he was wide awake and we had a brief conversation about it and went back to sleep.  He could've pretended to be asleep so that he didn't have to acknowledge I said it, but he didn't.  He told me he really cares about me and held me for the rest of the night.  I slept like a baby.

In the morning, I feared I'd made a mistake, that he might distance himself or be weird about it, but he wasn't.  As usual, we texted throughout the day while he was at work and he called me after work, and we seem normal.

I'm still terrified of my feelings.

The last time I loved someone ended over two years ago and it tore my life apart when I found out it was ALL a lie.  I'm so scared of falling in love with a sham again.  I'm scared that Mr. Banker will never love me back-- although I do feel that he cares for me deeply, so I hope this isn't the case.  I get scared that with his depression, he will decide to move back to Rhode Island.  I am afraid I can't make him as happy as he makes me.

Scared or not though, the words are now out there.  He knows how I feel.  And he isn't running away.  I guess for now, all I can do is take that as a good sign that things might continue to grow between us and trust that things will work out however they are supposed to-either way.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Ten things Thursday

1. I got another fill this morning: 8.3 CC in my 10 CC band.  I was disappointed she only had me losing 3 pounds since I saw her 2 weeks ago, my scale said MUCH more, but I'll get over it.  It's a loss, hooray.

2.  Insurance sucks right now.  I don't want any political talk, but seriously, I'm so frustrated right now and don't know what to do!  My work insurance went up about $50 a month.  That isn't going to break me or anything...the problem is that the benefits associated with it went WAY DOWN.  The deductible doubled, cost to see a specialist doubled, maximum out of pocket doubled.  So yeah, I'm looking elsewhere for insurance.  I believe I found the plan I'm going to go with, just a little nervous about doing something different.

3.  I feel so inadequate at times.

4.  I have therapy today.  This should be great fun (sarcasm here) because I have some negative feelings right now about #3.

5.  I had really horrific dreams last night after drinking a whole bottle of wine and going to bed mad/frustrated.  The worst of the dreams was a dream about my mom.  I dreamed that I found out she had cancer and only had a few weeks to live.  I woke up crying so hard that I could not breathe, I think that is what woke me actually.

6.  I started trying to put up my downstairs Christmas tree last night.  I have a fake tree downstairs and a live one upstairs.  The fake tree I have belonged to my mom before she went back to a live tree, and is at least 10 years old.  So, yesterday, when I started putting it up, I found that 2 of the 9 branch sets do not light up any longer.  So frustrating!  I will spend this evening replacing bulbs on those branches in hopes that I can salvage this tree.  They're too expensive to replace!!

7.  I don't think I'm going to do the Christmas/Birthday surprise I was planning for Mr. Banker.  Last weekend a friend said to me "Hollee, you've got to stop being a wife to a man who doesn't even want you to be his girlfriend".  She was absolutely right, so I'm trying to take a step back, regardless of how fucking hard that is.

8.  I'm so happy it's finally basketball season!  I love UNC basketball.  Seriously, there's not much that makes me happier than seeing my team win.  This year we aren't looking good, but I am, win or lose, a Tarheel :)

9.  I'm not at all a fan of Thanksgiving.  I don't know why, I have just never liked it. But I'm so ready for the break from work that is accompanied with the holiday.

10. OMG I get frustrated so easily sometimes.  Microsoft word is the bane of my existence today...

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Mood + Weight Loss Update

Hey everyone!

Tomorrow is 2 weeks since I started the anti-depressant Effexor XR.  A lot has been going on, but some of the things, I just haven't wanted to talk about.  Am I feeling better?  Hell yes.  Have I lost weight?  Yep!  Am I where I want to be?  No, on both the 'feeling better' and 'weight loss' fronts.

So, yes, the Effexor has helped my mood, but I'm on such a low dose, I think I could be doing better on a higher one.  Unfortunately, my PCP asked me to wait until the first week of December to increase my dose.  Trust me, I'll be calling her office for that prescription ASAP.

A part of my lingering funk is that Mr. Banker is still a little down, and it rubs off on me.  I care about his well-being in a way that I haven't cared for someone in so long.  I love him.  I don't understand how love can be absolutely freaking amazing and still suck at the same time.  It's this decision to give someone your heart and know they could tear it apart, but trusting they wont.  I'm not sure if he knows that I feel that way, and I refuse to say it unless we're officially 'in a relationship', so I don't think I'll be letting those words leave my lips anytime soon.

As far as weight loss... the day I saw my WLS PA last (November 7), my scales said 260.2.  Yikes.  My lowest since surgery was 242.something.  I got a fill and was doing pretty well at 7.8CC in my band, until the scale started to go down again.  By Sunday, my scale said 249.8.  Yes, that is a 10.4 pound loss in 10 days.  When my band is right, I promise you, I'm rocking it!  But with such a drastic loss, my band is loose again.  So, tomorrow I'll be back to visit Erica at the fill clinic again.  She must get so sick of seeing me.  I'm anxious to see what her scale says, because our scales are different, and her scale usually has me weighing a bit less than my own. So I guess I'll be checking in with you all about that tomorrow.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

NSV Skinny Jeans

Hi Guys!

It's been a while since I've had an NSV post.

Yesterday I went shopping and bought these size 14 skinny jeans at Lane Bryant.  Yes, I do still shop there from time to time.  Now, the NSV part of this is that at 344, I never wore skinny jeans, because they just never fit right.  So here's to my first pair of skinny jeans, to go with my brand new UNC booties :)

What's even better is that this $59.99 pair of jeans rang up for $6.49.  Why?  The salesgirl could not figure it out.  I was going to buy as many more pairs as I could find in size 14, but the other 14's did not ring up at that price, so I just got this pair.

My weight loss is going better.  Once I hit that "lowest weight since surgery" number I will start my weekly weigh-ins again.  I'm getting close.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Up and Down ;)

By that I mean my mood is UP and the scale is DOWN!!!

YES!  Can I get a high five? lol

I'm feeling good.  I don't know if the circumstances are just suddenly better or if the tiny dose of Effexor I'm on has taken effect, but I feel very good the last couple of days.  I haven't felt this good in a couple of months.  I am not 100% adjusted to the antidepressant, but I have started taking it at 4pm, so the worst of my side effects happen during my sleeping hours so it's bearable.  I've worken up at 4:30am nauseas, and so tired the last few days, but it is gone by the time I start work.

Things seem so much better with Mr. Banker.  Maybe things were never actually as bad as I perceived them.  Either way, I missed this feeling--the ease of it and the happiness I feel just hearing his voice. Tonight he said "I love your body" as a response to a picture I sent him.  I needed that validation that he is physically attracted to me.  It made me feel wanted and I really needed that from him right now.  In the same conversation, he said something else significant.  We were talking about being able to share your deepest secrets with someone, and he said "I don't think there's anything I wouldn't tell you".  I said "really?" in such a way that he knew I was genuinely surprised, so I explained my surprise.  His response was that he could think of 1-2 things that he isn't ready to share with me, but reassured me he'll get there at some point.  That's significant to me... that he feels comfortable telling me almost anything, and that he wants to be able to tell me the few things he isn't ready to share yet at some future time.  It made me smile to hear him say that.

I came up with what I want to do for him for his birthday.  It's totally cheesey, but I think/hope he will like it.  I can't write what it is that I'm doing, because I don't want to ruin the surprise for him if he's reading.  Yes, last week I told him I didn't mind if he reads (but who knows if he is or will).  I have nothing to hide.  My concerns were how he would react to :

A) My feelings for him

B) My weight

But if either of those are a deal breaker for him, it wasn't going to work out anyway.

And maybe reading my feelings will help.  I really suck at expressing my feelings TO the person I feel them for.  It is strange, because in general I think I'm very articulate and easy going, but when it comes to expressing my emotions to the person they apply to, I just shut down.  I know it is fear of rejection, but I don't know how to change it.  I think it would be better if I could get past it.  I'm much better at actions.  I feel like his Christmas/Birthday gift is a small thoughtful way of saying "Hey dude, I care", but sometimes words are just necessary.  I'm just no good with them.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Looking Up

I'm not sure if it's possible that my antidepressant could be having an effect already (day 4), or if it was just a good day, but I'm feeling very positive today.

Woke up and my scale looked to be going in the right direction.  I didn't take my antidepressant right away because I was going my friend's son's first birthday party and didn't want to feel horrible for it.  I waited until 5:30pm to take it so I really got to enjoy the day without nausea or feeling extremely tired.

The party was really good and I felt pretty for the first time in a LONG while.  I'm thankful to finally have had a good day.  It's the first completely positive day I've had in longer than I can remember.

Just me before the party.

I didn't want to post photos of the party (with the baby) without my friend's permission, so you'll just have to deal with my vain selfie.

Thank you to all of you for continuing to read and support me through this dark spot.
I know the negativity can get old.
I promise you all I'm trying really hard to get to a better place and bring you my usual positive self and good weight loss news!  :)

Saturday, November 9, 2013

The truth about Antidepressants

Ever heard "It will get worse before it gets better"??

Well, that's exactly what it feels like to take antidepressants.

When I took antidepressants for a 3-month period in 2011, the beginning was horrific.  My PCP accidentally prescribed a very high dose (150 mg) instead of the starting dose (37.5 mg).  She told me she was putting me on the starting dose so I pushed forward and made it through those two weeks of hell to the other side and never checked the bottle to make sure I had the right dose.  I can only describe what I felt like was a living zombie.  I went to work and could do nothing but stare at the screen, in the moments I could keep my eyes open.  I slept A LOT for two weeks.  But then I came out on the other side so much better.  I joke that it was the quick, difficult way, to find the effective dosage for me.

So Thursday when I got prescribed 37.5 mg of Effexor XR, I was sure to check the dose on the bottle.  It was, in fact, the right dose.  So I thought it would be easy breezy to start compared to that high dose.


I was wrong.

I feel pretty damn bad.  But I believe I need them enough that I'm going to push through this rough time until my body adjusts. 

Friday I woke up nauseous, never threw up, but I wanted to just to get rid of the feeling.  I went to work but had a hard time focusing, and eventually fell asleep on my desk.  At that point I decided it was just time to go home at 3:30!  I only work til 4 most days anyway because I go in early.  Got home and had a nap for a few hours before going out for Sara's birthday.  And wanted to be in my bed again by midnight, but luckily I survived until I crawled into bed at 3am.  I hope it doesn't take the full two weeks to adjust to this lower dosage.

I do see a light at the end of this dark tunnel at least.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Ghrelin vs. Hunger

 I had a really good appointment with my WLS PA this morning.  I know I just saw her 2 weeks ago, but I am going crazy with hunger and haven't lost a pound.  In fact, this morning I weighed 255.2 on the official scale.  WRONG DIRECTION HOLLEE!!!

My PA- Erica- sat me down and explained that after extreme weight loss, the body can start to produce an excess amount of Ghrelin.

I suspect many of you know what Ghrelin is... I was introduced to the word in my pre-op nutrition class, but in case you dont:  Ghrelin is a hunger hormone.  Your body produces it to tell you that you're hungry.

So I've lost all this weight, and basically my body is freaking the fuck out.  My fat cells are like "Oh my gosh, where did that 90+ pounds go?!  We need it back!" The good news is that Erica says this typically doesn't last more than 3-6 months.  Erica tightened my band again- I now have 7.8CC so please cross your fingers this is going to be the adjustment I need!  This was a pretty huge fill.  Erica mentioned that my band has definitely loosened up since I saw her two weeks ago, so even if I'm not seeing the number decrease on the scale, I have obviously lost fat around the band to cause it to get looser.

I love Erica.  She is so good to me.  She again told me that I am doing an amazing job at this, and that because I'm a good band patient, she will continue to see me every two weeks to get me through this difficult time.  She said that if I was not following the lap band rules and trying to come in so often, she would not allow me to continue having appointments frequently, but she knows I'm doing my best.  She really reassured me that I am going to get past this rough spot.

One more doctor appointment this afternoon with my PCP to hopefully get anti-depressants.

I swear I go to the doctor more than any 25 year old ever should!

Wednesday, November 6, 2013


Today I had my first therapy session.

I have been to therapy once before, but it was very different. I was there for grief and depression related to my ex, so I knew exactly what to talk about to get to what I needed to work on. This time, with general depression, I had no clue where to start. 

So we talked about a wide range of things. Some things I hadn't thought of in probably ten years. Without summarizing the whole visit, the therapist did make mention that I only smiled three times- talking about my dog, my sisters, and Mr. Banker.

It was a pretty good session. So I have three more weeks of free therapy to try to work through the dark fog in my mind. And, with the therapist's full support, I am going to my general practitioner tomorrow for anti-depressants. I took them once before and they made all the difference. FYI, for those of you on anti-depressants, Effexor XR is known to promote weight loss. Many others cause weight gain.

My only problem is that I'm absolutely TERRIFIED of taking pills with this band. I had to take an antibiotic in January that made me so horribly ill. So every time I swallow a pill I expect that awful feeling. Fingers crossed....

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Thankful for Friends

Completely not Weight Loss related in any way, but...

I have mentioned it before, but I really do have some very good friends.  I don't see all of them all the time, or even talk to some of them on a frequent basis, but every now and again, they will pop up and remind me that they care.    Over the last 24 hours I had three friends pop up with random acts of kindness, and I really needed that right now.

Thank you Sara, Rebecca, and Keli.

This week is my friend Sara's birthday.  I try to wish my friends a 'happy birthday week' at the beginning of each birthday week.  I do this because I want them to know I'm thinking of know that I am not doing it because my phone calendar or facebook reminded me, but because I remembered them.  So I wished Sara Happy Birthday Week and later in the evening she wrote a public post on facebook to thank me for thinking of her.  This was a simple thing to do, but it reminded me that people are sometimes appreciative of the little things I do.  I try to be giving and it gets discouraging at times when I feel that my kindness has been taken for granted.  It was a needed reminder that people do take notice of what I try to do to be a good friend.

I have talked about Rebecca before.  She owns the Fan Feet company with her partner, and often includes me in exclusive UNC Carolina Club member events.  It really means a lot to me that she always invites me to these events that not everyone has access to.  Today was the UNC Basketball kickoff breakfast.  Although I'm straight, from time to time I get girl crushes.  A long time crush (since I was in high school) is Ivory Latta, a star UNC basketball player who went on to play for the WNBA.  I got to meet her this morning at the breakfast and honestly, that was way more exciting to me than hearing Coach Roy Williams speak.

Then today, I had lunch with my friend Keli.  I was planning to buy Keli lunch because her grandfather passed away last week, but she beat me to it.  It was unexpected and much appreciated.  She really is such a good friend, to listen to me talk about all the things that have been going on with me, and really care, when I know that she has been dealing with a lot of sadness herself.

It really is the small gestures that make the biggest difference.