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So far so good

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I had the gastric plicaiton surgery on April 3, 2014. Since I live in San Diego, it was a simple matter of going to the airport and being picked up at 7:00 a.m. Ride was fine into Mexico. Arrived and filled out some paperwork and immediately off to the nutritionist, ECG exam, blood work and dentist (he does the evaluation to determine if you can do the surgery). The second floor is where you go and the waiting area was full with people who had their surgery the day before and were waiting to go to the hotel and those of us arriving for surgery.

After all was done, I was led into my hospital room, changed and waited. I guess I was the last to have the surgery around 2:00 p.m. After waking up from the anesthesia, you have to get up and walk. I had absolutely no problem, although others appeared to be in pain. I feel for them. After spending the night there and being woken by the nurse several times changing the saline IV bags (I am a very light sleeper), the next day came. Not a problem for me. I am probably not the typical person since the others were still in pain.

It is true, as they tell you, walking helps. Walk a lot. Keep walking. There is some gas buildup in your stomach and you are going to want to either burp (and usually fail) or fart (also usually fail). Once that gas gets out you feel so much better, hence the walking to help get it out.

They gave me three medications; one for pain, one for gas, and one as an antacid which you need to do for 40 days. Don't cut it short. You just paid good money for surgery. Why mess it up with not following directions?

I did not stay the night in the hotel since I live in San Diego and if something went wrong, it was easy for me to go back. The drive back to the border took us to the Otay Mesa crossing. A couple of things: the driver does not go back to the U.S. until about 11:30 a.m. If you have a flight before 3:00 p.m., you are cutting it close. The border is fickle. Sometimes you can get through very quickly and sometimes it takes forever. This is not the driver's fault. He actually used the correct border crossing (Otay Mesa) because the lines are a lot shorter.

Anyway, back home, just a little pain which went away. Since I have 4 dogs I have to take out, walking was easy. Also, at work, I do not sit down. I have a stand up desk. I did this because I have a bad back. Standing actually helps my back. Walk, walk, walk. There is a free app called Noom walk on the Google playstore which I downloaded onto my phone. Use it. It keeps tracks of your steps throughout the entire day so you can see how much you walk. 10,000 is minimum. Just put the phone in your pocket and go about your daily life.

I followed the eating instructions (really the drinking instructions). Follow it to the letter. Yes, after a while buillon gets old but you need it. And sip, sip, sip. I have a glass that has marks for ounces. I know that 4 ounces will need to go for the hour. I just sip a little at a time. I use crystal light to which I add liquid probiotics and liquid vitamins. I also use vegetarian buillon cube to 8 ounces of hot water.

So I started at 203 pounds with a bmi of 29.1 on April 3, 2014. It is April 11, 2014. My weight this morning was 192 pounds. That is about one pound a day. My goal is 163 pounds. I just follow what they told me (I finally get some liquid Greek yogurt (makers sure it is Greek yogurt not just yogurt). The ones I got at the supermarket come in tubes for kids to eat. They're great because they are already portioned. I also had some creamy tomato soup (4 ounces). At this rate, I expect to get to my weight goal in no time.

Some other things: I live with a roommate who eats regular food. It can be tempting to want to rush it and get back to eating solids. I told my roommate about my surgery. He understands. Funny thing is, he had pizza last night but it was half the amount he usually eats. I suspect when he sees my weight loss, he may consider the surgery.

I chose the OCC because the same surgery in San Diego would be at least three times more and before you get it here, you have to be obese and have another health factor associated with it, like Diabetes. I was about to get into the obese range and I did not want to wait until other health complications arose before doing this. I don't eat meat, I don't drink, and I eat healthy. Yet the weight was still gaining. Also, I will freely admit it, when it comes to food I am weak. I want it and I loved to eat. Knowing I was gaining weight, and knowing I loved food and would not be able to control it all too well, I chose to do something about it. For those considering this surgery and those going through it, congratulations. It can be a scary proposition having surgery but it was worth it for me.

Finally, realize that once you get to solids, you can't just go back to eating crap and greasy food. I have a co-worker who had her stomach surgery years back. She tells me your stomach will let you know real fast when you have overeaten (think vomit or real bad indigestion), and when you have greasy food (think stomach pain and the runs). Wonderful, isn't it? Anyway, yes I plan on eating pizza (vegetarian of course), but it will be just a small slice. So far, what I have had (liquids) actually filled me up pretty good. As my co-worker tells me, when she has a hamburger (which is rare because it is so dense), it is like the size of donut hole. I don't plan on blowing the money I paid for this surgery on going back to eating tons of food (and I love food). So if you have friends who love to drink and eat, don't give in to the temptation just to fit in. You are worth something which is the reason you want this surgery.

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