Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Kicking my own ass

And not in a good way.

Thankfully my knee did not bear the brunt of this fall, but the bruise is interesting. You should see the one on my palm. Alas it didn't photograph well.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Three years ago today.

Gram was ready to go. Her body had been through so much over the years and the diabetes finally won. I was not there. This picture was taken a couple of months prior. You can't see my PICC line but since I had had time off from work due to that Staph infection of my third ACL I was able to come down to the Cape and spend a few days with her. I am so glad I did because when I was better I was ready to get back to my life. I will never forget the beet salad, no dressing, I was eating at Cambridge Brew Company for lunch when she died. I got back to my desk and my VM light was on, no message. Twin sis and Mom were here, and that's the way it was supposed to be, but still... Mom waited for me to drive the 100 miles before she called the funeral home. Her HHAs had come and changed her into the dress she wore to my wedding. There she lay on the bed with no light, no color, no more Gram.

Today has been a rough day. We came down to the Cape last night and I did not know that I would feel like this. This place we retreat to was her home. In some ways I feel like she could still return. I miss her. I miss her strength, her wisdom, her smile. I walked down to the bay side beach where her ashes are this morning. It's brilliantly sunny but chilly today. It was brisk but it reminded me that I am alive. Despite the issues in my life currently, I am here and my body is capable. She was so proud of me when I got my weight down. She couldn't really see me, but when she hugged me she could tell. I know she is still proud of me but today I really wish I could hear her say it.

Thursday, March 25, 2010


I got out of my own way this afternoon and left the apartment to go to class. I didn't want too. But I did. And I am glad I did. I had a great conversation with the BioStats professor about that pesky little statistic that irks the crap out of me. There will be a post about it.

In other news, I got a B+ on the midterm. Go me, numbers and equations and logic oh my!

I'd rather the skirt.

I am taking the quote below entirely out of context. I love reading Raina's blog and the linked post is a wonderful example of why. This passage jumped out at me today and I've been thinking about it bunches since. To be clear, I'm using this statement as a jumping off point for thoughts about myself. No one else.

Some of us would rather be fit, strong and healthy and put less priority on what our body looks like. I have shifted to 'what can my body do' rather than 'what does my body look like' and I am quite happy there, thank you very much.

I am pretty much the polar opposite of this statement. I wonder if I'll ever feel how she feels? Do I need to feel that way? I am quite happy where I am too. I have my own standards of beauty and style that work for me. I never feel like I'm not good enough when it comes to how my body looks (except the knee), naked or clothed, pre or post plastics. Giving it some thought I'd say this statement holds true from 240 pounds on down.

There are however, many days I feel like I am not a good enough weight loss success because I don't work out. Because I don't focus on what my body can do. It's amazing to me that I still feel pressure to live up to a societal norm even when I've gotten to where I need to be. The expectation that someone who has lost a lot of weight and kept it off by embracing her inner athlete, by being that woman who has changed her body into something powerful, strong and capable is something I am not immune to. I have thoughts of inadequacy all the time when it comes to my success because I choose to focus on the vanity, on the looking good.

Putting on a pair of gym shorts is literally painful, I'd rather the skirt.

Pat Pat Pat

Well, what to say about today's appointment? I waited, a lot. There was some small insurance hassle, he had no good news about my cyst and I have to go back because they only have Synvisc in the 3 shot form.

I also had to deal with an annoying PA today. I can't recall if I have met this one... but seriously, have some idea of who I am and why I am there before you walk in the room. This is not a flare up, I know why I am here and what I am asking for. She was fine after we established that pain all the time is my baseline and I am not interested in cortisone. I must be able to walk. Cortisone will deflame me, but at same time it will make my knee more painful. It actually needs more fluid, the right kind of fluid though.

Which brings me to the Bakers cyst. Doc wants it to just rupture on its own. I understand why, poking a needle in to drain it will still leave the balloon like sac that can just fill back up. But if it ruptures, like when you pop a balloon, the sac falls apart. Hard to know how long this will take. I do know that when it does happen the pain will stop me in my tracks for a day or so until the burning starts as the fluid seeps down the back of my calve. I've been through this and it sucks.

I do like this guy though, he is thoughtful and thorough and kind. He reminded me that I could come in every six months for the Synvisc. Yes I know, sometimes though I just don't feel like dealing. He patted me on the back when I said that.

I am trying so hard not to be overwhelmed today by my future. I've said before that I feel like I wasted so much life time to being fat that I am motivated to not lose any more because of my knee. That's hard for me today, lots of pain still to come.

Thursday, March 18, 2010


I can't believe that in less than two months my legs as I know them will be no more. I struggled with before and after pictures for my plastics last summer. Had more to do with not wanting to take them myself and being unable to find someone I felt comfortable enough with to take them for me. I took a few with my iPhone and did post a couple, but nothing that you could put next to another picture of me and go that's the before and after. My surgeon has those and while somedays I wish I had my own, I'm really not that sad about it. It was not pretty and I spent years cultivating a look that disguised my excess as much as possible. Why show that off?

But at the same time... I think there will be some of my legs. If only because I am going to want to see the difference. I can't really imagine how they will look or how much is going to go. I assume my thighs will still touch, but how much? I have no idea. I just keep looking at them thinking how much smaller could they really get? I'm going to find out.

Nothing affects my mood more...

Than the weather.

Today is awesome out.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Knowledge is Power

Did you see some of Zimmer's artificial knees are no longer being reccomended? Looks to be a design issue with a knee they can attach to your thigh bone with no cement or screws... I'm skeptical already. This comes from the conference of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons' in New Orleans last week. I wonder what that convention crowd was like. Living down near the WTC and BCEC my new favorite hobby is guess what all these similar looking people do for a living. /blogress

Some day I will need one of these devices. For my own edification I follow the companies that make them. My three years in (kinda) Big Pharma was an eye opening experience. My opinion of Zimmer has never been high. One of those personal interactions that leaves a black mark for life. One of their local sales reps was in my Introduction to Biology class a couple years back. He was lazy and a loudmouth and barely made the effort to do the work. This wasn't even at the Ext. School mind you but at FSC. If he was indicative of corporate culture and the kind of person they hired then no thanks. One the last day of class he brought in some "reading material" for me. He had talked at me all semester about my knee and just in case I hadn't heard him he had literature for me. Classy.

If you haven't read this post by Sheryl about her tattoos, go right now and give it a read. I feel pretty much the same way about my scars. I know I have blogged about this before but most days I would rather deal with the stares, rude remarks and comments that came with being 345 pounds than the 20 questions, confusion, and pity that come with the scars on my left leg. Yes, I know how unrecognizable it is, and yes, it hurts worse than it looks. You read that right. I am never going to have the body I was meant to have. I often wonder what it would have looked like, moved like, worked like without all these years of abuse. Surgically I've been altered beyond repair, both good and bad, but I can't help but wish I could have done things differently.

So like she says, Live and learn, kids. Live. And learn.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

20 Things

Ever meet someone on line and just know they are good peoples? I am taking this from Kenz and her wonderful blog.

1) What is one of your favorite ways to spend a Saturday?

If I am on the Cape I like to check out the beaches. Especially in the winter. I can remember going for rides with my Grandmother as a child, with my mom later and now I do it. Mom describes it as soul touching. I agree.

2) List your top three favorite TV shows

1. Survivor (It brought me my husband)
2. Countdown with Keith Olbermann & Rachel Maddow Show
3. My local Fox news station

3) Would you rather be in pictures or take them?

I am awful at owning a camera. I like to be in them now.

4) Why do you blog?

Because occasionally I have things to say. But I blog mostly just so others know it is possible to lose weight, keep it off and not be a slave to it. Even if you have more than 100 pounds to lose and have never been thin.

5) Share five websites that you visit everyday...

Besides Facebook and Twitter? Slate.com, Boston.com and NOAA.gov

6) If you could have lunch with one person from your Twitter list who would it be?

It would be @AlltheWeigh aka Kenz.

7) List a few of your favorite snacks.

Beef Jerky, Kashi Bars, some sort of fruit.

8) Do you have a pet?

The Fuzz aka The Mister will be 13 this May. Hard to believe I have had his cranky but lovable ass that long.

9) Which three material possessions would you struggle to live without?

My iPhone/MacBook
My car
My LV St. Cloud that I can wear across me so I never lose my purse.

10) What's your favorite drink?

Like drinky drink? Guinness. Meal in a glass.

11) Do you enjoy cooking?

I do. And I do a lot of it.

12) Do you have children?

Not yet?

13) What are your favorite hobbies?

I love the flea market, I love collecting vintage and antique costume jewelry.

14) Would you consider yourself to be shy or outgoing?

I am definitely outgoing these days. I was on the train home the other night and started chatting with some guy (turns out he was a pilot in town for a layover) and he told me that if I was his daughter he would be worried about me! Ha! So yeah, I can talk to anyone.

15) If you could change one thing about yourself, what would you change?

At some point if I could go back and say stop, no more knee surgeries, I would do that. But I can't and so I live with consequences of my decisions.

16) Who is your favorite actor/actress?

I can't say I really have one. Follow some pretty funny people on twitter though. Specifically the guy who plays Adam on the Young and the Restless.

17) What's the silliest thing you've done this week?

Freaked out about an exam that I knew was going to be fine.

18) Do you live near your family or far from them?

I live near. Twin sis is 1.7 miles away, walkable. Mom is a bit further these days but only 45 minutes in the car. We all spent the weekend here together down on the Cape. It was lovely.

19) List three of your talents.

I tell a good story.
I am very perceptive.
I almost always choose the right line.

20) What is your greatest attribute?

I'm smart and beautiful. I've been saying this a lot lately. But to know it and own it are two different things. Somewhere along the way I let myself be convinced that I was not smart and I certainly was not beautiful. Wrong. It's been in me all along.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Revisiting the Danon Light and Fit Commercial

You can view the latest installment here. I hate this one even more than the last one. Which if you click the link you will see where I blogged about it back in July.

Again, I ask why is an attractive woman, in this case Heidi Klum!!! slurping down yogurt like this? Gross. Ew. Ick.

Sunday, March 7, 2010


I'm always surprised by the number of people who show up to my blog because I've talked about Synvisc. If you don't know what that is, it is a synthetic joint fluid. It helps keep me mobile but the last time I had a shot of it I experienced some bizzarro tingling in my feet and hands as well as some swelling. It could have been that I ate all sorts of salty foods and sat in a car all the next day, I'm Slovenian after all, but I wonder if there was something more to it.

I'm going to have to find out though. Currently all the fluid my knee is producing seems to be seeping out the back of the joint into a Bakers Cyst. Ouch. I think it's all the walking I've been doing. I can't believe it has been three months since I saw that guy in December. But in the last three months my baseline of normal has changed and I want to make sure this amount of activity is sustainable. It has to be. I'll take the risk associated with the Synvisc if it means less pain. I keep saying I am going to call on Monday. For real, I am going to call tomorrow about an appointment.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

May 18th for Phase II of Plastics

I have a date. I was going to consult with someone else... but I liked this guy, and again, I like to read that wound healing is a clinical interest. After what I went through last summer, hello Zyvox for normal flora? I want someone who will be able to help me should I come undone. Twin sis got great results with her surgeon, but he was very wham bam thank you mam. For someone like her, that was fine, she heals as she should. Me, I often don't heal as I should.

People are scared for me, I know that. But I need to do this. The timing kind of sucks, but I am used to having surgery when M is busy. It will be okay this way. Recovery doesn't look to be as intense. Just skin, no muscle manipulation. It's the way you have to position yourself for the first couple of weeks that has me only slightly concerned. I need a recliner between now and then. You can really sit and you can't really lay down. No 90 degree angles of any kind.

I have no expectations except less skin. He talked about some lipo, I assume that is how he will get the fat that he is going to put into my tibia. I'm getting the divot fixed while I'm there. He is going to entirely remove my old scar ( from #9, #10 and #11) and add my fat to the decimated tissue planes. I'm super excited about a scar that won't be tacked to the bone. It's more uncomfortable than one would think and occasional very itchy, there is some sort of trapped nerve that occasionally gets irritated. The soft tissue aches and I am hoping that the plastic surgeon can restore some sense of normality to that poor abused part of my tibia.

The scar will be T shaped. It will run about half way down my thigh and the cross on the top will be tucked into the crease under my buttocks and may join up with my current scar just near my hip in the front. It's hard for me to envision... I'm not one to google image search for plastics. I did a limited search last year and got all bummed out. Maybe because it's now part of me, but I feel like I never saw any pictures of results on line that look as fabulous as mine.

Only one other thing to do before I send payment. Make sure that the surgeon who I adored last summer isn't planning a Boston comeback. I google him occasionally... some interesting developments but hard to tell what result might be. Time to put in a call to the old office I think.

Sometimes I wonder what I did to deserve this. I feel guilty about making it this far and actually having the means to fix myself further. So many other things to spend money on and here I am willingly going to get myself cut open, again. Yeah, I don't care. This is for me, this is because of what I was able to accomplish. This is my reward, and I'm taking it.