Monday, February 27, 2017

Be Good, Do Good, Feel Good

I am at a truly weird part of my life at this very moment.  Tomorrow is the big day.  The hospital called earlier to tell me to be there at 11:30 so I'm assuming that my surgery is scheduled for some time around 1:00. The post-op liquids have been purchased, the refrigerator stocked.  My bag is packed and as directed, I ate a light lunch and have downed 10 ounces of cherry-flavored Citrate of Magnesia.  It is the last sweet flavor I will have for many, many weeks.  That lunch was the last "normal"meal I will have consumed for months if I totally behave and want to avoid problems that will have dire consequences.  Trust me, I will follow the rules to the letter!!

What makes this so weird or so strange and different, and why it feels so much like waiting for the onset of labor at the end of a long pregnancy, is that I am literally on the doorstep of a total life change.  I have referred to my imminent surgery as "the life changer" to my very dear Lynette.  She totally gets it and supports me as I make this reference.  Naturally, so does my patient and loving husband who will be incredibly involved in this life change, for better or for worse.  Isn't that what we promised in our wedding vows some 47 years ago?  He's a man who's true to his word and so much more.

As I sit here, waiting for something to start happening as a result of that cherry drink, emails and texts are rolling in.  What an incredible feeling.  So many people are cheering me on, proving to me that they support what I am doing and why I am doing this.  I hear them saying that they love me, that they would love me just the same if I remained at my current weight. I hear them saying that they support my choice and trust me because they know I am intelligent and will follow this path to a healthier life, not because I am in any way self-absorbed or vain.  Trust me, I'm not doing this for vanity!  That skin has to go somewhere and I'm betting that there will be a lot of nasty places that it will hang.  And my face, well, that might change and not for the better's worth it all if I can feel good and keep on feeling good for the rest of my life.

Yesterday, I spent the entire day in the company of three of my "younger" gal pals.  We went off Cape and I followed them around as they dove in and out of vintage shops and antique centers.  Not that did not indulge mind you.....I came home with a few tangible treasures too.  But, the day was a joy on so many levels.  At one of the first stops, a vintage flea market, there was a "featured" vendor.  Her name is Stephanie Cerep and her company, "Favorables".  She says in her flyer that hers is a company that was "born out of the idea that kindness is contagious and each one of us is ABLE to make a difference, where seemingly small gestures......can make a person's day and ultimately have a positive impact on the world".  Stephanie is a disabled person by some descriptions but a very abled person if ever there was one.  So, I bought myself a little prezzie, one of her little favors, bearing these words: "Be good, Do good, Feel good".  How simple is that?  I told Stephanie that I would place my little item where I would see it every day and would be reminded of her kindness and simple words.

So, I'm on the way, one foot in front of the other, about to jump off that proverbial precipice into strange waters, hoping that I'm being good, doing good and feeling good along the way. Yes, Stephanie, your kindness is contagious and I hope that some of what I am doing will rub off onto anyone who needs assistance in following a path to a healthier life.

Oh, don't forget to check out Stephanie at:

Saturday, February 25, 2017

Grateful and Ready

I'm three days from my bariatric surgery.

My friend Lois gave me a little book that she thought I'd find useful as the journey progresses. It is a charming little journal, one that I can and will, use to practice 365 days of gratitude.  I have already made entries and lately, I have been giving so much thought to the abundance of things and people for which I am truly grateful.

Most of all, I am grateful to my friends who have supported me in ways that they may not even be aware of.

 These Spring-like days, so uncharacteristic of late February, make me believe that they have been set aside for me alone, that they are setting a stage.  One of the things I feared when the date of February 28th was set, was a big snow storm that would cause postponement but that seems rather unlikely as I look at the forecast.  For once, a big event in my life might not be overshadowed by weather!

I have a lot to enter into that little journal.  I know that there are going to be some rough days ahead, that this choice that I have made will be one that I might entertain a regret for, more than once.  But, I do also know that I will have people around me who will lift me right back up when I do get down, who will remind me of how far I have come and tell me that they will be there with me along the way. I'm so confident because of your confidence in me.  I'm so ready because you have allowed me to get ready, even if you, my friends, have not fully understood the plans.

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Forward, March.....

After a long absence, Winter is back.  We had our first major snowfall and I have spent lots of time indoors, getting projects that have been on a back burner,  done.  I'm nesting.  Feels like I'm awaiting the first pangs of labor, heralding the bigger wave and eventual arrival of a baby that I nurtured within myself for nine months.  When I actually did birth babies, I always knew that soon they would be arriving because of my sudden spurts of uber-activity.  We didn't even know the word "uber" back then, but let me tell you, scrubbing grout in a bathroom with a toothbrush surely would define the word now.  This time, it is not a baby.....but it probably weighs as much as a whole nursery filled with them.  This time, I am readying for my next big life-changing event and I have a date!  Finally.

The phone call was basically anti-climatic.

"I'm calling to schedule your surgery"

The date, mutually consented.....Tuesday, February 28th.  The time to be determined later, as in the day before.

Instructions have arrived in the mail.

This coming Tuesday, Valentine's Day, is the last "class".  It's called "NURSE EDUCATOR" class and Joe will accompany me.  It's the down-and-dirty session where all questions will be answered, making it very real and hopefully, not scary.  My surgeon has already met with me and soothed me with his candor and confidence.  According to him, the show will all be over in thirty minutes.  I'm assuming that he means thirty minutes of his time.  I know I will be pre-occupied in the O.R. for longer than that.  Thirty minutes and hopefully, a lifetime of distorted self-image will disappear forever.

Next week, I will "diet" in earnest.  No, I will not have the Last Supper every day from now until the 28th.  That's not a particularly good idea.  The smaller my liver is, the happier my surgical team will be.  March will be a time of peculiar ups and downs.  Lose weight now.  Gain 10 to 20 pounds in thirty minutes due to surgery. Lose weight again.  One year later, see a weight gain, it's expected. Okay, one step at a time.

I will update after the Nurse class.  Seems funny tho.  I'm a nurse and I've been an educator.  Hmmmm.  Maybe there's a career opportunity ahead.  If I'm starting a new life, I'll still be young enough.  Right?  Hmmmm.