Monday, April 6, 2009

I Have a Confession...

I'm fat.

I'm not just overweight. I'm a fatty. By medical standards I'm what's referred to as "morbidly obese." EW. I think at my highest I was close to 300 lbs, I know that at one point I was about 280. I'm now down to 258 as of a few weeks ago, and I think I might be down a few more since then. According to my home scale I'm 252, but I don't know how accurate it is compared to my surgeon's scale.

In addition to being fat (I hate that word) I have just about every complication you can have due to excess weight.

High blood pressure - check
Type 2 diabetes - check
Elevated triglycerides - check
Excessively low LDL cholesterol (that's the good one that SHOULD be high) - check
Elevated thyroid horomone - check
Weight bearing joint pain - check
Back pain - check

Am I really only 33? Because the RealAge test I just did said that I'm 40.6. Gah! I'm not ready to be 40!! I'm still getting used to my 30's!

So I don't want to be fat anymore. Not that I ever really wanted to, but it happened. I've done diet and exercise, my body rebelled and they didn't work for me. Years of depression and loving to cook have piled up on my ass, and I want that ass (and the concurrent gut) GONE. I want to be healthy again.

When I was still working, one of the girls on my team started talking about a weight loss clinic where she was going. I decided to look into getting on the same med that she was on, Phentermine, and if Tricare/my PCP wouldn't let me have it I was going to go to the same clinic as my friend. Went to my PCP and was FINALLY ready to do something about my weight, only to be told that because of my blood pressure issues she couldn't put me on Phentermine. She could put me on the prescription strength of Alli, but bright orange anal gravy really didn't seem all that appealing to me. Then she busted out the big guns. She told me that Tricare now covers the LapBand. Gastric surgery had never really crossed my mind since I didn't think that Tricare would cover it, but I told her to go ahead and put in a referral and I'd do some research and talk to my husband. It was worth a shot, right?

After doing some research and going to a seminar on gastric surgeries, I decided that gastric bypass would actually be the better option for me. With LapBand, if you travel you have to get the fluid removed from the band first. Since my husband is in the military, we travel quite a bit. We visit our families in other states, but there's also the possibility that we could end up back overseas again, as well. If I'm going to put my body through such an invasive surgery in order to lose the weight, I don't want to risk gaining it back. Bypass just made more sense to me.

So now I'm in process of getting everything approved. I've jumped through the hoops. The ECG was fine, the stress test wasn't all that stressful, the sleep study left me looking like I had tusks sawed off my jaw for a few weeks, but hey! NO SLEEP APNEA!! (I'm claustrophobic, I really didn't want to end up with a CPAP.) Last week I had my "gut scope" done. I have a rash in my intestine, but it's not an ulcer so I'm just on Nexium to pretty things up. Now I'm just waiting to hear back from the surgeon's office as to what the next step is. I'm praying that the surgeon will give the go-ahead to submit the request to Tricare TODAY. If that works out, then the surgery should be approved by the end of this week and I'll FINALLY BE ABLE TO GET A SURGERY DATE. The way things are going it likely won't be until mid-May, but I'm to the point that I'll take what I can get. It really doesn't help to be such an impatient person.

Soon, there will be less of me to love. And I can dig that.