LilySlim - Weight loss

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Merry Christmas


Good cheer from me to you and yours.

I'll be taking a break for the next week or so to spend time doing holiday stuff, being with family, and so on.

See you then.

Jules

Saturday, December 12, 2015

Less Whining, More Gratitude

Here's a gratitude list for today, Saturday, December 12, 2015


  • Warm comfortable home where I can safely sleep in peace with the kitties, warm and dry
  • Good, healthy food to eat
  • A safe place to cook the food
  • Hot showers
  • Diabetes remission
  • Good friends
  • Both my parents are alive and thriving
  • Kitties who love me
  • Snow
  • Sunshine
  • High winds (hey, I wasn't going to rake those leaves ;-) )
  • A car that looks like hell but still starts (*fingerscrossed*)
  • Hot water / showers
  • Clearance sales
  • Nivea hydrating lotion--my hands and feet feel fabulous (thanks, Mom!)
  • Good smelling soap
  • Good coffee
  • Books and also the Kindle
  • the Library, OMG, what took me so long to get a card?
  • Anti-depressants and -anxiety meds
  • Caramel apple pie low carb yogurt
  • Eggs
  • R
  • Hats (it was so cold last night, I wore one to bed. I slept like a baby.)
  • Tim Conway Jr. show (7 - 10, M-F, KFI am 640. He's funny as hell.)
  • Whipped cream
  • Sunshine
  • Mountains
  • Kindness of friends and strangers
  • Christmas (and gatherings)
  • This computer
  • There's more, but that's what I've got right now.


Cheers.

Off to Ventura County to visit with my dad and step-family.

Friday, December 11, 2015

Donuts

I went to town yesterday to get the mail (junk mail only; no "magic"), and then down the street to the grocery store. I got the tomatillo salsa for my pork tacos (which were fantastic BTW), and I got two maple glazed raised donuts . I brought them home, made coffee, ate them slowly, and enjoyed every damn bite. The result?  Down another pound.  LOL

Of course, once I had eaten them, I wanted MORE. So I had a yogurt and a piece of clafouti later.

Today? The donut craving is gone. I scratched the itch.

No guilt. No regret. Obsession petered out.

Weird, right?

:-)

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Physical Carb Cravings Have Eased

The mental? Notsomuch.

I went out to the post office last night and then to the grocery for sour cream to have with my pork tacos last night. I didn't eat them, though. I had yogurt and clafouti for dinner. But I walked by the donut case. They had maple glazed donuts, and that I love. I looked at them with longing. A woman and her son were picking out donuts at the time or several of those donuts would have come home with me.

And I don't even like maple. But I like that maple frosting they put on donuts.

I walked around the store trying to distract myself and get something else.

Bacon:  In the basket.

Gelato:  In the basket

 (ice cream not only does nothing bad to me, it doesn't interfere with weight loss. I'm serious. Now that I've said this, I'm sure I'll get a lactose allergy by tomorrow. *snort*)

Looked at:  Frozen pies, frozen pizza, frozen taquitos; fruit; meat; yogurt; cheese; sausage. And still wanted a mutherf*cking maple dammit glazed freaking donut.

I felt like a heroin addict trying to score. I'm serious.

I put my ass in line and got the hell out of there.

Driving home, I almost turned around twice to go back for the donuts and some tomatillo salsa that I like on pork tacos. Then I remembered the gelato, which would melt if I did that, and the sun had just gone down and the cats needed to be brought inside and given wet fud. I decided that if by 8 o'clock, I still wanted the donut, I could go get it, or two. So about three hours.

The three hours came and went, and I still wanted the donut, but I didn't go. I was reading a book. I just kept reading.

I went to bed.

I still wanted the donut.

I ate the gelato instead. Sea Salt Carmel. Pretty damn good. Delish.

I still want the donut(s).

WTF?

Then I saw on my surgeon's FB group that anemia can cause carb cravings. I've been anemic since....June, I think. Months.

My weight is down from yesterday, about .8 of a pound, but down.

Jeezus I'm a mess.

Am I ever going to be okay? Gah.

Dammit.

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Carb Detox, Day 3.

 Cravings are down, waaaay down.

Yesterday was the worst day. I felt angry and so sad about not being able to eat a whole box of fresh-baked chocolate chip cookies that I honestly felt like I could cry…but I didn’t. But I was cranky, yeah.

I had a late therapy appointment last night and on my way home I decided to stop at Big & Nasty to see if I could find a book I want on clearance. It’s been out for a while and book III is due out in June, so it should have been on a clearance table…but it’s a small store, so they didn’t have it. (Stephen King’s Finder’s Keepers, the second book in the Bill Hodges trilogy, book I being Mr. Mercedes.) I actually have the Kindle version reserved from the library, and I’m next in line to get it, but I want to read it NOW. LOL
So I got a cup of coffee at the Schnuttbucks in the back of the store, gazing longingly at the bakery case items, and then wandered around hoping to find my book. Then I started getting hungry and I started thinking about foo. I decided I should leave otherwise that bakery case was going to be calling me like a siren.
I got in the car and started thinking about dinner. I had stuff at home I could eat, but I was really hungry. I have these moments where I feel as if I don’t eat something, I may eat the first thing I get my hands on. Not a good place to be away from home.
I started running through my litany of food places I could go to for a “snack” on my way home:  Del Taco for a cheese quesadilla or a beef burrito; Panera for a chicken salad; In ‘N Out for a bunless burger…then thought about the money; I’ve already overspent for the month, so I need to watch every penny. Just go home Jules, and eat the food you already purchased.” So I did.
Earlier in the day I was craving something sweet, so I rifled through the pantry and found some sesame cashews I’d gotten at Trader Joe’s a while back. I ate a handful of them. Very satisfying.
As I was snuggled in bed last night with the cats, reading on my Kindle, the carb cravings hit. I started mentally inventorying all the food in the house. There was nothing I wanted. Well, there was one thing, but it meant getting the toaster out etc., and I wasn’t up for that (Eggos. Yeah. I bought them, and ate a few, last week.) So I decided to just go to sleep and see how I felt in the morning.
This morning? Starving. I ate two yogurts back-to-back. And I’m thinking about the next course already. LOL I’m craving protein so I know my body is kicking into weight loss mode. And this morning? Down two pounds from yesterday, and down eight pounds from the 1st. Yay.
So I feel good about today. I’m not craving carbs, like…obsessing about them. Would I like some cookies? Sure, who wouldn’t. But not today. Not. Today.


Monday, December 7, 2015

Carb Detoxing. Again.

The struggle is real. Cliche, but true.

This was my response to a "what's your motivation" post on one of my DS groups.

"Detox from carbs. I had super bad PMS last week and if it slowed down long enough, I ate it. frown emoticon Three days for the detox (cravings stop). UGH."

It got to the point where I was eating things not because I was hungry or even wanted them, but because I could. I had given myself mental permission to run wild. Not good.

So I said fine, if you're going to do this, there needs to be an end date, and I decided the end date was Sunday at 11:59 pm.

So this morning, of course, I wanted carbs. That's how it works. But I am sticking to my guns so far. Yogurt for breakfast, (Dannon Lite and Fit Caramel Apple Pie--my favorite. I have ten in the fridge.). some low carb clafouti with whipped cream; coffee with HWC, cup #3 just now.

I have to go out in a bit, so I'm thinking about lunch. Planning is a better word. I'm planning for lunch. One of my stops is going to be Target to get a pescription, and they have the best prices on HWC and whipped cream and eggs, so I'll be picking those up.Also coffee. They also have these protein packs, I guess from Hormel? I don't know. It's like diced chicken, turkey, or ham, cubed cheese, nuts, and they have them for $1.57. That's the cheapest price I've seen anywhere. I'm going to grab half a dozen to keep in the fridge for grab and go.

I really felt like I was an out-of-control crazy person. Mini-panic attacks; disturbed sleep; anxiety; fearfulness; overwhelmed with it all; weepy; depressed; and yeah, I went there, suicide. It's the depressive's last card. I was thinking about it a lot. Then I was thinking about Viktor Frankl's book Man's Search for Meaning. If you haven't read it, you MUST. He survived the Nazi camps. He survived them by finding meaning for his life even while still a prisoner, starved, beaten, humiliated. So while my depression-wired brain was thinking of reasons to take ALL the pills, the sensible side of me was thinking of something else: Who would suffer from my loss most? And the answer was my cats. They depend on me. Food, shelter, love, health. They are, in a way, like children, only with a lot less maintenance (although litter boxes are the bane of my existence). They were my meaning while I waited for the crazy mood swings to pass.

I started my period last night. Only 24 days since the last one. I used to have them around the 20th like clockwork, but the D&C I had in October, which was supposed to "kickstart menopause" (ha ha ha. I laugh.) simply reset the clock. I had a period 24 days later. It just moved the clock forward. Why my gynecologist, and who I saw last week for a six-week post-surgery checkup, didn't offer me something to help with the crazy, I don't know. And I was so depressed it didn't occur to me to ask. But my therapist said to talk to my PCP about it. I'm going to this week. I was too anxious (and angry) to go last week (he takes walk-ins.)

I cannot live like this. I really can't. I need some type of medical/chemical intervention. I'm tired of having periods. I'm over fifty for fucks' sake!! Enough, already. 

So anyways...the ideation has passed, along with most of the craziness (I function at a moderate level of crazy most of the time), and I've given myself permission to eat anything I want providing that it's protein. 

My father invited me to a party at his house this Saturday, and I want to look good and not have gas and diarrhea (as I have all week) while I'm there. My step-relations will be there. I haven't seen them in years, and I weigh about 150 lbs less. I'm wondering how they'll react. If past behavior is any predictor of future behavior, they'll be jerks about it, either passively aggressively, outright rude, or maybe, maybe, kindly. We'll see. I'm going to spend time with my dad. And let's face it, free food. They usually do prime rib for their Christmas parties. My dad just turned 77...I don't want to have any regrets if anything should happen once I move away. We've had some good visits here lately.

So that's where I am. If you'd like to leave some supportive or understanding comments, they would be most welcome.

Thanks for reading.

***
So far so good today:

Yogurt
LC Clafouti w/whipped cream
3 eggs, scrambled
coffee w/ HWC
Nuts w/dried cranberries
Protein box at Starbucks (not including "biscuit" and wtf?) (boiled egg, cheese, peanut butter, apple slices, grapes)
SF Peppermint mocha, breve
Three squares of chocolate.
homemade steak with bleu cheese
piece of LC/SF homemade pumpkin pie w/whipped cream
iced teas

***

My Christmas party outfit:

Blouse, size L, from Charlotte Russe. My first ever piece of clothing from their store (birthday present).

Slacks I got yesterday at Kohl's for $6.00 (Six Dollars). I am not kidding. A picture of the tag follows. They are Gloria Vanderbilt and they look fantastic on.







Friday, December 4, 2015

Where Have I Been?

I've been, and still am in, crazy hormone carb land. I'll be back when the crazy and the carbs go away.

That is all.

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Soothing With Food

I'm stressed.

Duh.

A lot going on.

I would like to soothe and comfort myself with food.

I can't. I'm full.

If I weren't full, would I still try to soothe with food?

Probably, but with different choices.

I want to eat all the things. Gingerbread, frosted cupcakes, chocolate chip chunk cookies, pumpkin spice cake.

Yes, carbs and sugar.

I won't, though, even though I'm full. I have pumpkin pie at home, cherry clafouti, whipped cream, salmon is defrosting in the fridge for later. Even knowing all these things, I still want to soothe with food because I am so stressed and anxious.

I feel like crying too, and I'm having cramps (I never have cramps). It's a little early for TMoTM, but that's what it feels like. I wish it would just stop already, jeesuz. My back hurts, too.

Carb cravings. Cramps. Teary-eyed. Sounds like hormones exacerbated by stress.

Huh.

I'm glad we had this talk.

Monday, November 23, 2015

SF Pumpkin Pie, With Crust

***UPDATE 11 24 15***
We had some of the pie last night. The filling is delicious and so is the crust. But.The crust sticks to the pan and gets soggy.

I am thinking that perhaps baking the crust separately, perhaps like a flat cookie--roll into balls and then flatten on parchment on a cookie sheet--then serving it with the crustless pie is the way to go. We'll see. I thought I'd "warn" you in advance.

Cheers

***

I love me some pumpkin pie. If made without a crust and baking splenda mix, it has very few carbs, about 4 carbs. And pumpkin has a little protein. And it makes me feel like I'm enjoying fall, especially since Starbucks refuses to make a SF version of their Pumpkin Spice Latte (effers). So I have made about three pumpkin pies in the last month. I have 1/8 about five nights a week with whipped cream.

So this week, I had an idea: What if I took the Almond Crust from Deb at Smitten Kitchen's almond crisped peaches and used it to make a crust for a pumpkin pie? So I made it last night. I pre-baked it for fifteen minutes at 350 so it would be solid enough to hold the liquid pie puree. And it came out!! And the smell, wonderful. I finally feel like the holidays are here. So if you want some pumpkin pie, and you're watching your carbs or calories, make this. I mean it. It's that good. And incredibly easy.

I make the Libby's Famous Pumpkin Pie (this recipe is for two pies, so if making one, cut in half), use baking Splenda blend instead of sugar, and 6 ounces 2% milk and 6 ounces of HWC instead of evaporated milk (low carbs, I just prefer the taste of the HWC). And make the almond crust, and pat it into a pie plate with your hands. No need to Pam or grease your pie plate as there is a ton of butter in the almond crust.

I also make it all in one bowl:  add pumpkin puree, spices, eggs, beat with a handwhisk: add in milk and HWC, beat with whisk until blended, pour into crust. Voila!

Enjoy!!





Sunday, November 22, 2015

Witness to Obesity

My husband showed up out of the blue early yesterday morning. He's off all Thanksgiving week. I knew he was coming down, I didn't realize it would be Saturday. Whatever.

We went out late in the afternoon for a cheap early dinner at a Burger joint, and then over to Barnes and Noble.

We wandered around, separately, for a while. I probably spent an hour or so just browsing, taking pictures of books I was interested in, some I'd like to get for my nieces for Christmas, and so on. And it was just good to be out of the house, ya know?

Anyhoo, like most B&N's, this one has a Starbucks. They are also partnered with The Cheesecake Factory and they had this giant sized poster with a photo of a big slice of pumpkin cheesecake. I love both pumpkin and cheesecake, and had I had an extra $5-, I would've gotten a piece. Instead, I sat down with a hair magazine (I need to do something with this mess called "hair") looking at short haircuts, and then Inc. Magazine that an an interesting story on a CEO who decided every employee at his company should make at least $70,000 per year. It was a great story on how he came to that decision, how he accomplished it (paid for it), and the result (profits are up). If you get a chance I highly recommend it.

At any rate, I'm sitting there, reading, and this short round man sat down across from me. And as I looked over at his table, I noticed that he had a sandwich of some type in a basket; a big piece of pumpkin cheesecake that he had already started on, and a carmel frappucino. And I thought to myself:  That's a lot of carbs.

My second thought was, I wonder if the cheesecake is any good?

And he was eating it in a way that both reminded me of myself, and as if he were a drug addict self-medicating. Both were true.

I remember having those eating parties, although I rarely did mine in public, how I would plan for them, meticulously select the menu to please all those food cravings that were actually manifested feelings of insecurity, fear, anxiety, and mediocrity. And I was so glad that for the most part, I am not that person anymore.

Oh, sure, I have my moments, but to eat what he ate? It wouldn't fit. And then I would be sick for days. The cheesecake I probably could've pulled off, but I was already full from dinner anyway, and you know what? Cheesecake will always be there if I really want some. Or I can make my own only LC/SF. And have (altho not pumpkin flavor).

And I really felt badly for the guy. Not pity, no, more of an understanding that whatever was bothering him about himself and his life he was trying to tamp down with all of that food. He ate it all and then left when he was about halfway through his frappo.

I get it. I totally get it. And without surgical intervention, I might still be that person. I'm coming up on two years since the surgery, and I have changed SO much. I make better choices and decisions now almost without thinking. I think about consequences both in terms of immediate (sickness), long term (weight loss) and being out of control. I don't ever want to be that person again.

For me, this was really never about appearance, but health, and stepping away from crazy behavior, and I think for the most part I've been successful. And my goal is to continue that into the future.

I don't have to be "that guy" ever again. And I don't want to.

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Hematology Update

So I met with the hematologist, and based on my most recent labs in August, he said an iron infusion is indicated with a bariatric surgery diagnosis; however, MEDI-CAL will NOT pay for an iron infusion until my hemoglobin hits 10 or below. It is currently 11.7. He agreed that it was not an informed decision on the part of Medi-Cal, but that his hands were tired. He asked me to come back in January, and get my labs done before I come in.

That's all we can do. I can't pay cash, it would be in the thousands of dollars. So I wait.

Hematology Appointment, At Last

I've forgotten if I promised a post on something and just haven't gotten it done. I'll have to read through my posts to see.

I am going to the hematologist today, and I am a wreck. The anxiety started yesterday afternoon. It is crippling. I got into bed about 5 o'clock and read (fiction turns off my brain) until bed time, then I took my meds and read until I passed out, Kindle in hand.

The anxiety is less today, enough that I'll be able to function, i.e., shower, dress, drive to appointment, but not enough that I may not cry during the appointment depending on the doctor's words (I could cry either way, helpful or not helpful words). But I am anxious, no doubt about it.

I also ate like nuclear war was impending yesterday--I dropped five pounds in two days, don't ask me how--and I was shoving food in like it was my last day to eat. I had two servings of LC/SF pumpkin pie that I make with HWC. I've been craving gingerbread and that seems to soothe the urge (recipe at the bottom). I had yogurt (Dannon's lite & fit caramel apple pie. I've bought every single container at the two local grocery stores that carry it--it is a "seasonal" item and will eventually be discontinued. Then I'll be sad.) Two ham/salami/havarti/1/4 dill pickle roll-ups--like a sandwich with no bread. Next time I need some dip to go with it, Caesar dressing, vinaigrette, something. Two pieces of my LC clafouti (recipe on my WLS blog) with whipped cream; a handful of Cheeto's; another yogurt; a honeycrisp apple (I usually have with peanut butter but I'm out); I think that's it. I feel like I ate about every 1 - 2 hours. I was still hungry at 11:00 pm while I was reading, so I told myself that if I got to 11:30 still awake, I could have some food, but I fell asleep. And woke up hungry. LOL

So anyway. Back to the hematologist. I have a folder of stuff I've been compiling in my five month quest to be evaluated for bariatric surgery related iron deficiency anemia. I have:
  • Labs from Nov 2014 (oldest)
  • Labs from Aug 2015 (newest)
  • Hysteroscopy report from 10/15/15 which says "anemia" under "medical conditions"
  • A peer-reviewed article on bariatric surgery related iron deficiency anemia
  • A peer-reviewed article on obsesity and malnutrition
  • A letter from my surgeon recommending evaluation for IV iron infusions
  • A pamphlet from ProFerrin on their heme iron, and which I used to take (when I stopped taking it, my ferritin saturation actually did not go down any further. Weird.)
  • My referral from my PCP
  • I'm hoping this will be enough, or that he'll just take me seriously from the get go (as if. My experience with doctors lately has been rather adversarial.)
The "deferred reward system" (DRS) seems to work for me--I promise myself a reward if I do something I either don't want to do or am too anxious to do. So my DRS for this outing is lunch out. Nothing fancy, but something yummy, healthy, and that I don't eat regularly. I'll see what's near the doctor's office (about an hour away--the closest hema who takes my shitty Medi-Cal.). I'm so anxious I feel like I'm shaking inside. 
And this is what R did for me. He always went with me to doctor appointments. I used to think it was he because he was being over-protective. Now I recognize it for what it was: I wanted him to go because he could prop me up and reduce the anxiety. Nothing like 6'2", 250 lbs of angry German/Swedish guy to see that people behave courteously. He didn't have to say or do anything most of the time. Just his presence was enough. I didn't realize how much I leaned on him for this type of support. I've got to re-learn how to do this myself. I am learning it, but it is hard. OMG.

There is no bad guy in the end of this marriage--R and I are still on friendly terms, he even called me on my birthday. (I got my usual gift of "nothing" just like every other year, really....ok, maybe a little bitterness on my end.) We were always friends and I hope we can stay friends. So far we are. 
Oh my goodness, this anxiety is so energy-draining. I know that anemia can contribute to depression, one of many contributing factors....sigh.

One last thing:  What if I don't have my shit together, i.e., mental health, by the time school starts? I can fake it til I make it, I just don't want to suck at it. LOL

OK. I need to shower. The warm water will be nice. It's been near freezing here at night--three of the cats sleep on the bed with me. Pascal is the last holdout, although he did get on the bed with me last night when it was just me on there, so that's an improvement. My elderly gentleman, my sweet, thirteen-year-old lover boy (pic at top of blog). I hate him thinking he's been left out. I'm giving him extra TLC. I think it's working.

Wish me luck. (Do you think I might even get an infusion today? Is that possible? I sure feel shitty and I really want to go for a long walk, but have been advised against it due to the anemia. I'll have access to a full gym as a student when I start Spring semester. I'm SO excited to get in there...but need to get this handled first. I'll report back when I get home.)

Have a good day!

--Sparkly Bundle of Nerves


 Libby's Famous Pumpkin Pie, Low Carb, Sugar Free
 I make this ^ pie. It's the one I grew up with so comfort and memories. This is how I make it now:
  • No crust (I don't miss it, really)
  • replace sugar with baking Splenda (equivalent amount--1 c sugar = 1 c Splenda)
  • I use 8 ounces 2% milk and 4 ounces HWC (heavy whipping cream)
That's it. Bake as directed.

I did notice, however, that evaporated milk has almost no carbs, so I'm going to try it with my next pie, which will be soon as I only have one serving left. I may still add some HWC, we'll see what the texture is like.

Let me know if you make it and how you like it. 

Cheers.

PS:  Here is the nutrition info for one can of Libby's packed pumpkin (just plain; not the pie filling).

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

What Fresh New Hell is This?

I started my period yesterday.

WTF?

I had the diagnostic D&C with hysteroscopy on October 15, which was just a few days before my regularly scheduled period on the 20th, so after getting scraped out, I didn't have one. So here it is, yesterday, just November 9th, and I'm menstruating? And it's a BAD one. I wonder if I should call the gyn? Of course, I'll leave a message and no one will ever call me back so...what the hell. It's a bad period.

Come on, body. You're really screwing up here. Most women would have started menopause by now. I'm too old to have a baby if you're busy prepping for one every month uterus *ahem*, as much as I would love to have one, it's just not a good idea. That's what nieces are for. And you know, also there's the little matter of access to sperm, which ain't happening *ahem*, but really? It's just time for this to be over. It's been forty years. Forty fucking years of this crap every month. Don't you think it's time to cash it in??

Your purpose here is done. Vamoose, buh bye, adios, dasvodanya, nobody likes you, hit the road! Seriously; sod off!

I mean it.

No cramps. No back pain. No nothing, just blood. Lots and lots of chunky blood. Oy vey es mere.

For sale: One uterus, used but in good working condition. All serious offers considered.

I can't talk more, I need to go change my tampon and napkin so I don't bleed all over my clean sheets, comforter, and favorite jammies.

UGH.

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Referrals

Well, I finally got a referral to not just a hernia repair surgeon, but a hematologist. It was a bit of a struggle, I fortunately had thought to bring written evidence of my desire for an IV iron infusion, and he shook his head and thought, it appeared to me, “what the hell.” As soon as I got out to the car I called and made an appointment. It’s during Thanksgiving week, so hopefully I can get infused (if I do, in fact, need one as I presume), by Christmas so pre-move.

So I was given not one, not two, but three names with phone numbers for surgeons to see about the hernia repair. I needed to research all of them, first of course. Holy cow, first one on the list is on probation from the state for “gross negligence and incompetence.” OMG. Originally they had voted to withdraw his medical license, but instead, probably through his attorney, plead it down to probation providing he take 60 hours of ongoing education. He’s got one more year left of his probation.

There is a PDF you can view of the results of the claim and hearing, and there were three defendants. UGH. I wouldn’t let this guy hold my purse. NO WAY.

The second had five stars, great educational credentials, and no malpractice, actions, or probation. Awesome.
After holding for ten minutes, I hung up and called back. Busy. I kept redialing until I got through. Gave my name, phone number, what I need, did I have a referral, birthday, and oh yeah, what was my insurance? “Straight Medi-Cal.”

“Oh. We no longer take Medi-Cal.”

Wouldn’t you want that to be the first question, not the last question? Maybe it’s just me. (High expectations, constantly surprise I’m the only one who assumes things will go right the first time.)

Third doctor. Only 2 ½ stars, good educational cred, no malpractice etc., takes Medi-Cal. Awesome. First available date is January 22, 2016. Sigh. The week school starts. I asked to be put on the “cancelation list” but they don’t have one. I was free to call tomorrow to see if there were any for Friday. I will, but my hopes, this time, are not high.

I’m wondering if I should just wait until the semester is over. I’ll be settled in, I can take the summer to recover (hopefully any job I have by then will let me have the time off), and I would be in the area of my surgeon in the event there is an emergency. Also, and this is kind of toward the bottom of the list, I might have better employer-based insurance. *fingerscrossed*

The hernia is huge and uncomfortable, sometimes painful, and bending over feels…wrong. It just feels wrong. Imagine if your stomach were on the outside of your body and you bent over. That’s what it feels like—folding an organ in half. No like.

Maybe I should get some kind of support garment, not just for cosmetic reasons, but to help keep it from getting worse. Anyone know of such a thing? Post in comments, thanks.

I’m shoving in food today like there’s an invading army coming over the pass. I’ve had two helpings of homemade pot roast (not bad, but I’ll keep trying until I find a recipe I like. It does make a lot of meals); low carb clafouti, low carb pumpkin pie….shovel shovel shovel, and my pants are loose in the butt.  That’s what usually happens just before my weight drops. Since it’s up 10 pounds (yes, carbs, I know, stress….) it wouldn’t hurt to lose a few. I see my surgeon on Monday. It almost feels like a waste of gas, but he is amusing, so there’s that.

Maybe if I get better insurance, he could do my hernia repair next summer. Hmmm….

So I’ve got six things on my list of eleven crossed off my list for today.  Not bad, particularly as one of them was to do a makeup for the NaNoWriMo writing I forgot to do last night. *rolleyes* Then I can do tonight’s writing (1700 words, apx.), later this evening so I’ll still be on target. Holy G*d. LOL

I’ve gone to Target twice this week, to pick up prescriptions (and another one called today—automatic refills via text, and why can’t they all sync up and be on the same day??), and get a printer ink cartridge, and I’ve forgotten both times. I was even going to buy myself a reward lipstick for screwing up my courage and facing down the doctor for what I knew would be a fight for both referrals. I forgot the damn lipstick, too. Ugh. Growing old sucks.


Sunday, November 1, 2015

Update

I finally got in to see the GYN on Friday (after four calls leaving four voicemails and then sending a fax on Wednesday...) and the pathology report indicated everything is benign--polyp, fibroids, endometrium. Hooray. Also? Got to see some cool pictures of the inside of my uterus. Very interesting.

Also picked up my laptop with its new hard drive (yikes!) on Tuesday, so I'm learning about Windows 10, reinstalling stuff I like (Chrome), and re-setting saved passwords that I didn't write down anywhere. Ugh.

It's a gorgeous day out, so I'm taking myself to lunch and then a movie later, and then watching the Packers at 5:30. I've got all week to do chores and I've just got to get out of the house today. And it finally feels like fall.

Happy November!

Monday, October 26, 2015

Clafouti II & III

The first clafouti is one by Martha Stewart and which I've modified for low carbs. The recipe is as follows, my changes in red. It is delicious. I have a slice (1/6 th of pie) every morning for breakfast.

Officially, it is considered a clafouti only if cherries are used, otherwise it is considered a floginarde. Personally, I like the word clafouti, so in this space, I will be referring to this recipe, regardless of fruit type, as a clafouti. I think you'll like it.

CLAFOUTI II

Unsalted butter, for dish ( or spray like Pam; I use a standard glass pie pan 9")

2 large eggs
1 large egg yolk I used 3 whole eggs
1/3 cup all-purpose flour equivalent amount of almond flour
3/4 cup creme fraiche, plus more for serving I used sour cream
3/4 cup whole milk I used 2% milk
1/2 cup granulated sugar I used Target's knockoff brand Splenda Baking Mix
2 teaspons pure vanilla  I use a tablespoon and a half
1/2 teaspon salt
12 ounces cherries, halved and pitted I used fresh raspberries, about 6 ounces

I have also added the zest of a whole lemon--very good with raspberries--and cinnamon both with and without fruit. It was very good with peaches when they were in season.

DIRECTIONS

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Butter a 9-inch baking dish, 1 1/4 inches deep. Coat with granulated sugar; tap out excess. (I do not recommend this.) Whisk eggs, yolk, and flour in a medium bowl; whisk in creme fraiche, milk, granulated sugar, vanilla, and salt.

Arrange cherries in prepared dish. I scatter my berries over the top after pouring batter into dish. Strain batter over cherries (I didn't bother). Bake until browned around edges and set in the center, 30 to 35 minutes. Let cool slightly. Serve warm with creme fraiche or, if you're me, whipped cream.

I simply put everything into a blender, blend for 30 seconds, pour into butter pie pan, scatter berries or other fruit over the top, and bake as directed. Delish! Note: The clafouti will puff up, almost like a souffle, and then deflate after cooling--this is normal. Store in fridge. I like to warm up my breakfast slice for about 20-30 seconds in the nuker; it just makes it more flavorful.

CLAFOUTI III

I made the same recipe as above, however, I got it mixed up in my head with my first, much earlier clafouti recipe and I made the following differences:

six whole eggs
10 ounces milk
2 ounces heavy whipping cream

This made a very crusty, sweet clafouti that I think I like more than either of the previous two. It is also more protein heavy. I was out of berries, so I added cinnamon and it is very good. Berries is better, but it is still very good without them.

Cheers!

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Quick & Dirty

Hi, I still don't have my laptop. So that's why I'm behind on my blogging. However... I do have two new clafouti recipes to put up and I think you'll really like them.

My financial issues have been sorted so thank you very much no donations or loans are needed. Thank you I hope to get my laptop on Monday so I can catch up. I have some good news also. Take care bye

Monday, October 19, 2015

I Need Help

I need $300-. It would be loan only. I will pay it back at the end of January. I have three important bills to pay, but I can't. One of them is eBay. If I could get that paid, I could start selling again and generating income.

I'm seriously freaking out.

My PayPal link is on the lower left of this blog. Thank you.

I'm happy to answer questions privately.

And no, my husband can't help me.

SJ

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Outpatient Surgery Wednesday

It only took 4 months to get scheduled. *snort*

So I'm having a hysteroscopy and diagnostic d & c. Or what they call in the biz, a "dusting and cleaning."

I check in early, and hope to be done and headed home by lunchtime. I'll leave extra food and water for the kitties in case it turns into an overnight. I hope not.

I'm a little nervous, but hopeful that all will be well.

I'll check in tomorrow.

Cheers

Monday, October 12, 2015

How Do I Feel?

Like a wrinkly meat sack. Really. A very healthy sack of wrinkled meat. Although I'm not thrilled with this, I will take it over the alternative.

Ignore both my dirty rug and dirty feet--I was on my way to the shower. Those are my hot weather sleeping shorts. Very comfy.

Front view:


Side View.





Thursday, October 8, 2015

Ongoing Tsuris With Iron Infusion

I’m tired. I mean…my ass is dragging. I started noticing it in the spring, and it’s just slowly gotten worse. Last December, when my husband and I moved into this house, he and I loaded and unloaded a 22 foot moving van by ourselves. And, in fact, I had more energy than my five-years-younger than me, former jock/marathon runner husband. Heh.

Not any more.

Yesterday I went to the dentist and had my dentures re-lined, and boy, do they fit much, much better. Outstanding. And the appointment took about five minutes.

After that I went to a local Starbucks, got a coffee, and spent two hours researching and writing a blog post for a client.

Then I had some lunch, I splurged and went to Panera, I love their food, especially the chicken Thai salad with peanut dressing. Num. My husband did not like their food.

Then I came home, grabbed my Kindle that I had forgotten, and then went into town and did laundry. I did two triple loaders, so six loads, of laundry. Three days ago I did my bedspread—that poor Snuffy had drooled all over. His mouth needs work—and three loads of whites—so all the laundry is now done. I hadn’t done laundry in about a month. LOL I don’t have as many dirty clothes as my husband does. If I don’t sweat all over it or spill on it, I hang it back up. Your clothes last longer not being exposed to those harsh detergents, plus? It’s a lot of work washing the same shit over and over and over again every few days.

I folded it, then went to the grocery for some yogurt—I’m obsessing on the new Dannon Light and Fit caramel apple pie yogurt and my local grocery is the only place I can find it. They were on sale, 4/$4.00, so I got eight, and one vanilla, and one Chobani 100 passion fruit. In case I might want something different. :-)

Then I came home, fed the kitties, freshened their waters, and then sat down on the couch to read. I woke up about 10:30 on the couch, foot recliner up, chin on chest, Kindle in my hand, drooling. I fell asleep on the couch. I haven’t done that for years. But doing all those errands kicked my ass. Just SO tired.

Last Thursday after therapy I went to the ER to see if I could 1. Get an iron infusion or 2. Get a referral to a hematologist.

As I sat at the light waiting for it to change, I could have made a left to go home just as easily as I could go straight to the hospital ER. I nearly went left. I probably should have.

I thought well, I’ll drive by and see how it looks. It looked nice enough, no hordes of people waiting outside, so I parked. I got inside, and the waiting area was FULL. I was standing there, indecisive, when a security guy—with a gun holstered on his thigh!—asked me if I needed help. I said I was thinking about checking in, but I wasn’t sure if they could help me and how long the wait would be. He joked that “I’ve seen it much, much worse. Ha ha ha.” Yeah...funny. *rolleyes*

Then the admitting person asked if she could help me. So I said, “Well, I don’t know if you can help me….” And I told my story of post-bariatric surgery iron deficient anemia, need an iron infusion, I have my labs (and two peer-reviewed articles on that very subject), and she nodded her head and had me fill out some papers, put a wristband on me, and told me to wait in the lobby.

I waited about 10 minutes before I saw the triage nurse. She took my vitals, I told her about my previous history, explaining, for the zillionth time about choroidal melanoma (it’s so rare, most healthcare providers, or anyone really) has ever heard of it, I noticed that people are turning to look at me, patients, nurses, and doctors alike, after I mentioned "cancer" and "eye" together; then gave her a list of my doctors, drugs, and supplements, and then a diagram from my DS surgeon showing how the DS is structured anatomically (see below). She looked at it and said, I shit you not, “Oh. The bypass,” referring to the RnY, which this most decidedly IS NOT. Not even close. I had to ‘splain it to her. My experience with ‘splaining to healthcare professionals, is that hey tend to cop an attitude because what the hell could I possibly know about medicine, an untrained professional?  (No, but I LIVE with it every day, so I might *possibly* know something, eh?) I don’t know what it is. I try to be friendly, courteous, gracious, saying please and thank you, if you don’t mind, and smile, smile, smile. Maybe I need to be a bitch? I don’t know.  So after that, I was moved to another part of the ER. So far I hadn't even been given the pretense of a curtained "room." Just right there in the aisle in front of G*d and everybody. They were full, so all these conversations were taking place in front of other patients and medical professionals. I wasn’t thrilled, but in my position, I’m not able to make demands. I was thinking in particular of the armed security guard. I’ve seen people who raise a stink get escorted out of the hospital by these guys. Not this hospital, but others, in the past.

So then this dude who looks likes Einstein and also a little lost, comes over and tells me he’s the doctor, they’re going to order some labs, and go from there.

So I get moved to another part of the crowded ER and a nurse comes in to take my blood. Just right where I was, in front of a curtqained exam “room,” in the “hallway” in a regular chair. We start talking and he tells me he had the RnY five years ago and he passed out from low iron and fell through his shower door, cutting himself bdaly, and having to go to the ER. He said he had been over 500 pounds. He looked like he was pushing about 300, so he’d kept most, but not all, of it off. But the important thing was he got me. Right up until he said, “they’ll give you some pills, hon, that will fix you right up.”

Sigh.

Maybe I should just write a letter with my needs and why with attached documentation and just pass it out, I swear to dog.

Back out to the lobby for more waiting.

In 10 minutes, I’m called back in to go over my insurance. “You have Blue Cross, right?”
“No. Medi-Cal.”

It’s like I didn’t talk to admissions at all, or they didn’t update their computer, or whatever. I did my part, but as usual, I’m the kiss of death for health care going the way it’s supposed to. Is it just me? Or is it everyone?

We get it sorted out, back to the lobby.

Ten minutes lter, Einstein takes me to the side of the hallway in front of the security desk, (HIPPA violation??) with the guard standing there, and tells me my labs look “fine” and that there is nothing they can do, they don’t have any hematologists they can refer me to. He then says I should go to XYZ hospital because “they don’t take Medi-Cal.”
“I don’t know where XYZ is.”
“It’s in bumfuck Egypt.”
“I don’t know where that is.”
“Well, they don’t take Medi-Cal there.”
“They do not?”
“NO, they do not.”
“They don’t take Medi-Cal?” He nods. “Why,” I say, “would you refer me somewhere that doesn’t take my insurance?”
“They do take Medi-Cal.”
“But you just said they don’t. Which is it?”
“They do, they do. You need to go there. There’s nothing we can do for you here.”

He handed me my labs and in a fit of pique I crumpled them up, put them in the trash and said, “What a waste of my time.” And I walked out. (I did this as in a dream--no aforethought, just action.)

In my own defense, I have recent copies of my labs already. I’m sure whatever they had done was close to what I already had.

It’s like…it’s like I hadn’t talked to any of those people about my concerns. “I don’t know if you can even help me…” I said this to every person I encountered there in the ER. Or have we partitioned work out to such a degree that one person gets the drinks, one gets the salads, another takes the order, a fourth brings the entrĂ©e, and then a totally different person brings dessert, and then the busboy brings coffee. You see what I’m saying? And none of them talk to each other. They only do what their part, or link, of the chain of events is necessary, nothing more. I felt like every step of the way one or all of them could have said, “It’s not my job….” And they would’ve been right.

So I guess what I need to do is go through the phone book and call every single goddamn hematologist in a 100 mile radius and see if they’ll take me. I don’t need a referral as I have straight Medi-Cal. Which reminds me, I need to call them to find out why they changed my account and gave it a new number and why I’ve received nothing in the mail including a new card. WTF?

And I’ve now spent three days trying to get a colonoscopy scheduled. I was given a referral by the new doctor I saw this week  (on his prescription pad) to a gastroenterology group, along with the phone number, no address. I called for an appointment, they need a copy of my records before they’ll schedule me. I called the referring doctor’s office yesterday and ask if they’ll fax over my medical records as requested, and they say they will. I called the GI group an hour ago and they still don’t have them. So I faxed over my copy of the referral along with my basic info (name, phone, bday, address), in hopes to get an appointment scheduled. I've not heard anything yet.

I’m telling you, this Medi-Cal stuff is almost like having a full time job; that’s how much time I spend on it sorting shit out. How do undereducated and/or ignorant people handle this? No wonder they have armed guards at health care and social service offices. They make it difficult, confusing, and labyrinthine, and people need help with often serious health issues, and you keep bumping into wall after wall.? I can see how a less patient or educated person could lose their shit easily and quickly. I know I have been occasionally tempted to cause a scene. It's that frustrating. You need help, and no one will give it to you.

Is this what Obama had in mind when he wanted everyone to have access to healthcare? Because the access part is not working. It is a HUGE pain in the ass. And if you already don’t feel well? It can sometimes feel insurmountable. And that’s how you end up with people in the ER with gangrenous feet that need to be amputated because they couldn’t navigate the bureaucratic maze that is an impediment to getting a small health issue taken care of until it becomes a big issue and next think you know? Off comes your foot. That’s an extreme example, but I’m sure it happens all the time.

I have nothing scheduled for today, so I was going to spend a day resting and relaxing but it doesn’t look like that’s going to happen. I need to spend it on the phone, looking for the healthcare I need. Sigh.

That’s my story.

This is the business card my surgeon gives his patients to give to other healthcare providers. His contact info is on the reverse.

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

SF and Low Carb Pumpkin Pie

I love pumpkin pie, especially in the fall, which it has felt like the last few days--I even had a fire last night, very nice--even though there's a heat wave predicted for the weekend. And BOO!

So I love pumpkin...anything. Mostly because I like cinnamon, cloves, and smooth things like pudding, ice cream, and frappos.

So I decided to try and engineer my favorite pumpkin pie, the one on the back of a can of Libby's pumpkin and the one I grew up with so childhood memories/comfort food, into something low carb and sugar free.

You can see the original recipe HERE

The only changes I made were these:
  • No crust (spray your pie pan with Pam or use butter to grease)
  • Splenda in place of sugar -- equal amounts
  • Heavy whipping cream instead of evaporated milk

Result? Delicious. OMG, I've been having it for breakfast...and dessert! It is that good. I think next time I'll do half HWC and half half-and-half to make it a little more custardy and less dense. But either way? It's that good.


And yes, I did stick a knife in the middle to get a taste right out of the oven. Hey, I live alone, who's gonna care? :D

Health

Good thing I was free all day yesterday. Ahem. I met with the GYN for pre-op for my hysteroscopy next week (a diagnostic D&C to biopsy the fibroids and polyp that are currently residing in my uterus). I revise my belief about the doctor--I thought he might be from the Caribbean, but I think he may actually from the African continent. I say this because he has a thick accent. In addition to that, he mumbles and talks very deep and low, so it is difficult for me to understand him.(Did I mention have hearing loss in my right ear? Yeah, duct tape and staples. That's all that's holding me together LOL.) Sometimes I just nod my head if I think it's not important and I'm not sure what he said. Whichever, he seemed ok with my answers. LOL

He had an intern in his office, and when he asked her to explain how WLS can put Type II diabetes into remission, she mentioned fat, weight loss, adipose tissue, etc. I was not inclined to correct them. Fat and weight loss do not contribute to the immediate (often within days) remission of Type II diabetes post surgery. My remission took six weeks, but I was on insulin for over eight years and had been a diabetic more than fifteen--those two indicate a longer remission process post-surgery. I didn't bother telling them that by the end of six weeks I'd lost about 40 pounds and that I'd lost that 40 pounds over and over again over the years and it did not affect my blood sugars at all. But given my problems with doctors lately (oy vay!), I decided to just be quiet. It didn't matter. I just wanted those varmints in my uterus out. Doctor's can get pissed when you correct them, and I just wanted to move on with the gynecological process.

They sent me over to the hospital for an EKG and then next week labs and a urinalysis, which had to be completed within 72 hours of surgery. I checked in, waited, read, watched as clouds blew in and we got pounded with rain (cool!). Finally admissions called me in and then she walked me over to another lobby. Then a tech called me in and walked me back to her phlebotomy station. She picked up multiple blood collection vials and was giving me instructions on the urinalysis when I said, "I'm not supposed to have the blood draw until 72 hours before surgery...."  She blanched, looked at the order and said, "Oh." I told her that I was only there for an EKG and had I known I was waiting for a lab draw, I would have advised the person who walked me over that I was only there for an EKG. So she walked me over to the cardiac area and I had the EKG. The tech talked my ear off about her medical issues but, whatever.

So I got to my doctor's office around 10:10 am (I hate being late. HATE.), read until about 10:20, went in, waited, saw doc and intern, left about 11:30 am. Got lunch at Panda (leftovers are in fridge. What used to be one meal for me is now 3-4 meals. I got the Shanghai steak and green bean chicken.) Over to the hospital about 12:30, and I didn't get out of there until 3 o'clock. So yeah, like I said, good thing I had nothing else on my plate for yesterday otherwise I would've been a little frustrated.

I made some calls while I was "at lunch" yesterday, and found a doctor in my town who takes walk-ins from 9 am - 1pm, Mon-Thurs. Otherwise an appointment would be in ten days or so. So I got up early this morning and got in there by 9:05 am. I filled out all the paperwork only to have the nurse tell me, "You know the doctor doesn't get here until 10 o'clock, right?"

Uh. No. No I did not. And why didn't you mention it when I spoke to you yesterday? Honest to goodness, I feel like I'm trapped in a bad movie where everything goes awry. LOL

So I waited, got taken in just after 10, waited nor more than five minutes, and this good looking man in a gorgeous expensive shirt and tie, nice slacks, leather shoes, and a short salt&pepper beard read my file and then started asking questions. In fact, this is what I put on one of my groups:

Wish me luck. I just met with a new doctor this morning. I liked him very much. Professional, good listener, wrote stuff down, looked at the paperwork I brought AND made copies, filled prescriptions that were running out and made referrals. Not quite on board with the iron infusions, but I'm working on it. Yay.

I liked him A LOT. He also has one other paitent with choroidal melanoma so he knows all about it! What are the odds!?  He wants me to have a colonoscopy before I schedule the hernia repair. In the last two weeks it's gotten even bigger and more uncomfortable. It doesn't help that Snuffy, the new kitty, wants to stand on it all the time. Urgh.

So I'll schedule with the GI and hope to get this hernia thing rolling pretty soon. I want to be well by the end of December so I can move in January. I mentioned the iron infusion to him, but I threw so much other stuff at hime I think it got buried. I'll talk to him about it next time I see him. He also refilled two important prescriptions for me:  antidepressant and of which I only had 3 left; and anti-anxiety and which i ran out of mid-September and have felt and slept like shit since. (Uh, anxious, hello.)

So fingerscrossed that this guy is the guy, at least until I move.

Right now I'm waiting for my drugs at the Starbucks inside Target--and, oh yeah, Medi- Cal changed my Medi-Cal number and didn't notify me of the change OR send me a new card. I'm telling you, i'm the kiss of death for medical professionals and bureaucrats. And WTH? :-P  Stop already, sheesh. So hopefully I can get my drugs today. I explained it to the technician when I dropped off and he said they would have someone call. 

Since I'm here, I'm going to utilize my acess to unlimited internet to finish some articles I'm writing so I can get paid and do stuff like pay my cell phone (aka Internet access) bill. 

Ta!

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Low Carb Pumpkin Scones

I made these on Thursday (I think). The recipe is from AlldaylongIdreamaboutfood. I've made a number of recipes from the site, and they've all turned out well. This one did also; however, there is a caveat:  They're good right out of the oven or the next day, but after that? They're terrible. Ugh.

Also? It makes A LOT of scones. I'm just one person. Even if I ate one every day--which is a lot of damn pumpkins scones--they'd go bad before I had a chance to eat them. So if I make these again, I would cut the recipe in half and freeze all but two of them. I would probably also put them back into the oven to bake more after freezing to renew the flavor and crunch of the scone.

The scones I made? Have gone bad. Maybe it's the heat. I have eight left (I gave one to my mom), and I'm going to have to chuck them. I tried a bite last night and it just tasted...off. Yuck. So word--if you make these, and you don't have mouths that can eat them within 48 hours, I would freeze them.

Also? I've been totally off processed carbs for two weeks, and my weight is dropping like a stone. I hit 171 this morning, my lowest weight since I was a pre-teen. I'm not sure how I feel about it. It was never about looks or a number for me, but health. Although I do admit enjoying shopping in the normal-sized racks of clothes and having them look nice because more choices, I'm only human. And female. :D

Right now, I'm having trouble eating enough. Nothing sounds good, I'm not hungry. I'm just shoveling the food in. Yesterday I had my low carb berry clafouti for breakfast and dinner. It's all that sounded good. I've been adding in either one protein shake or one protein bar per day to keep my protein up. Neither of them taste that great, but that's not the point.

Jeez I'm tired. I'm going to urgent care to start my journey to get an iron infusion, again, tomorrow. I have another appointment in the area so two birds, one stone, save on gas.

Speaking of gas, I just ran out. I gotta go lie down.

PS:

GRE taken on Monday, 91% on verbal. Most excellent.

Sunday, September 27, 2015

Thigh Gap

I never, never had this, even in elementary school. I remember a group of us in 2nd grade sitting in a circle in the classroom and someone pointing out the size of everyone's thighs (we all wore mini-skirts in the early 70s. Anything else was square.). Mine were dubbed "the biggest", and I wasn't even overweight in 2nd grade. I was just...big. I've always been a large person. But that comment has stayed with him.

So I took this photo at my mom's about a week ago. I was sitting down, my knees were touching, and I saw the gap. I was astonished. I'm still adjusting to this "new body.


I just want to add that I'm sitting down with my legs angling up a little bit. When I'm standing, all the extra skin heads for my knees and bags up. I'll get a picture of it. It's not pretty, but, well, that's how it is. I have no desire to have surgery on my thighs. None. I'll live with it. Arms and boobs? Maybe. 

Saturday, September 26, 2015

Exhausted

My kitty woke me up at dawn this morning, as usual, to be let out. I let her out and came back to bed. R used to do this because he's a very light sleeper. Paige has figured out that if she meows right in my ear I'll wake up. LOL Smart kitty.

So I went back to bed and just laid there, awake, and tired. I thought about getting up and starting some GRE review, but I was just too damn tired to get up. I started wondering if I should take myself to the ER. I can't seem to get any medical help through normal channels.

I finally fell back asleep and then woke up about 9 o'clock and just laid there, quietly, and thought about stuff.

I put today aside to review the GRE so I'll be ready to do a good job on Monday. But I'm SO tired. Just thinking about going for another cup of coffee or cleaning the litter boxes makes me cringe a little because it involves getting up and walking.

I'm that tired.

But I don't want anything interfering with my grad application like missing the GRE on Monday. I think after that I'll take myself over to either the ER or urgent care. I need refills, a hematologist/iron infusion, and something is going on with my kidneys.

I hope I make it through. I'm considering a nap right now and I've only been up for two hours. UGH. This is ridiculous.

I hate Medi-Cal. I really hate it. I didn't apply for it; it was forced on me by Covered California (Obamacare). I thought our income was too high to qualify, and even R. said he thought we were over by about $50-, but that maybe they put us on there because of my cancer diagnosis? Who knows. It sucks, though. The standard of care is much lower. When it comes to my health? I want the best. At least my retinologist/oncologist accepts it. Since that's the thing that has the greatest potential to kill me, that is a priority. There is a 50% metastasis rate regardless of gene marker. I've not mentioned this to my family, particularly my elderly parents, as I don't want them to worry. But it does hover in the background on a daily basis. I keep moving forward as if I won't be affected--how can you live any other way? Hope for the best, expect the worst.

In the meantime, if I don't get an iron infusion, I may just go to sleep and never wake up. That's what it feels like from here right now.
Sigh.

Friday, September 25, 2015

Stress Level: RED

I posted this on some of my DS groups soliciting advice. I'm putting it here also as an update.--SJ

This has been a very, very weird and stressful week. One of the strangest was this, and I'm asking for input because I'm just at a loss. On Wed, as I was driving 100 miles north to visit my father, my new doctors' office called to tell me that because I hadn't submitted a follow-up urinalysis, my appointment  for the next morning was cancelled and they couldn't see me. Huh? I said what about the other things I need treatment for like hernia, iron infusion, refills? No, the nurse/Nazi said, "It's against our policy." To punitively punish someone when they make an all-too-human mistake? I forgot to get the urinalysis, so eff all my other health concerns? I've never heard of anything like this. So I fired them over the phone, and told her I was filing a complaint with the state. So now I'm at step one, again. I've needed an iron infusion since MAY. I'm at my wit's end. I just can't git 'er done. I live near [high desert town] CA, and I have straight Medi- Cal (not my choice, trust me). If anyone knows of a hematologist in the SoCal region (I'll drive!) that takes straight Medi -Cal, I will drive however far it takes. I'm just...exhausted. Physically and mentally. I'll be filing my complaint letter later today. Right now I gotta take a nap. Thanks for letting me vent. :-)

Saturday, September 19, 2015

Petunia

I know, I know, I'm waaaay behind. I've been paying attention to my real life as I applied, quickly, to grad school (I thought I had until the 1st of October. Uh, no. The 15th. As in last Tuesday. Oops. Got'er done tho.), and deal with the fallout of the end of my marriage. Did I mention that or not? If not, I'll get to it. If I did, it's fine. Really. Nothing earth-shattering.

So here are some pictures I took last week as I was preparing to go up to Central Cali to change cars with my husband and visit my BFF.

It's been a long time since I've worn bikini underwear, and I'm surprised that I even find them comfortable at all. No string bikinis, but these moderate bikinis are super awesome. I got them at Ross. They are size 8. LOL  I haven't worn that size since my early 20s (ladies' underwear sizes are typically half of the pants so, so in my case, a 16, which although accurate, is plunging toward 14.).

Here is the front:

That's a mighty big scar on my bellybutton. And that is a new ^ bra. Maidenform, $6.99 at Ross. Very silky and soft, and very comfortable. It's the nicest bra I think I've ever owned. It' a 40D. I think I may need to go to a 38C. We'll see how it all plays out.

And from the side, I give you Petunia. And why I'm uncomfortable and my clothes don't fit and women (and some men) look at me like, "Awwww, how sweet. She's pregnant."

Exhale.

Yeah, I'm pregnant, with an ALIEN!!  :P



I had an ultrasound on it last Monday, it's something called a "Richter's Hernia." I hope to have it repaired before the end of the year. We'll see.

Now I'm tired, I gotta go sit down and read some more. I'm exhausted from my nap. It's the anemia. I woke up this morning with my heart pounding, pulse beating in my eyes and ears, and breathing hard. I see my doc this Thurs. If I don't get sent to a hematologist, I'm going to either urgent care or the ER. Uckfay Itay.

Laters.

Weight today:  176.

Friday, September 11, 2015

Change of POV

Yesterday an idea popped into my head that I think is going to help with my carb cravings, food addiction, and emotional eating.

Instead of focusing on the stuff I cannot have, thus feeling deprived, I need to focus on what I can have. And that list is huge.

I guess, no, I know, I have been thinking and behaving as if well, now that I've lost all the weight I want to lose, and diabetes and HBP are in remission, I am going to eat what I wanna eat.

Uh, no.

It's not about losing weight, JULES. *thumptohead* It's about your health. It always has been about your health. With my lab results just coming in and several things being out of whack, I need to make some changes to my diet and nutrition to return to better health. I feel like crap right now. I'm sure most of it is the anemia (I'm working on it), but I've felt blah since about the first of the year.

Turns out? My protein is low. I told my mom yesterday, "I never thought I would ever say 'I'm not eating enough.'"  LOL  Seriously.

So I still have a couple of tubs of various flavors of protein powder for shakes, so I had one last night before bed. Syntrax Nectar Caribbean Cooler, it tastes like pineapple, mixes with a spoon in water, and I popped it into a big sippy cup with ice and a straw and sucked it down in about 10 minutes. I got not only 23g of protein, but about 16 ounces of water. Win/win.  I just had another one before coffee and first breakfast.

Now I'm having a slice of the peach clafouti I made last night (recipe in previous post), with whipped cream, and it is delicious.

Before I head out of town for an overnight trip, I am going to have some scrambled eggs with beef chorizo and cheese.

OMG, delicious. I'm enjoying it so much. I don't feel deprived. I feel sated, full, and the protein is not bad, about 8g of protein because I cut my clafouti into sixths, not eighths.

So I need to change my focus to the good foods I can eat. And I can eat moderate amounts of fruits and vegetables now. Not like before, certainly not, but a handful of lettuce supporting a boiled egg, bacon, cheese, nuts (once I get used to the dentures and they are relined because they are too loose right now), dressing.

So it's about gratitude. There are people on feeding tubes who can't eat. My father-in-law was on one for over a year. He said "eating is overrated." He would sit at the table with us for family dinners on holidays, and just look at the food and enjoy being with his family. He never acted deprived, although periodically he would ask for a tiny cup of coffee, which he would sip very carefully so as not to choke. He was a die-hard coffee addict. Coffee and related gifts always made him happy. (For those unaware, he had ALS and ALS either starts from the top down, or the bottom up. He was a top down, so the muscles in his throat atrophied and swallowing became a nightmare. Aspirating any fluid into the lungs while choking could trigger pneumonia, which is a slippery slope to a fast death. He was able to walk, albeit slowly and short distances, right up to his final hospitalization, for pneumonia. He handled it better than I would. He passed this last May.)

I'm lucky. My mouth, throat, stomach still work. Focusing on what I should not eat is ridiculous. I need to count my blessings and quit feeling sorry for myself.

I feel foolish saying this all now, but food addiction is a real thing. Just ask any obese or formerly obese person. How many alcoholics could get through the day just having three beers and no more per day. How successful do you think they would be? That's what it's like being a food addict. I need to have three protein-heavy meals per day, and two snacks. Actually, it's more like 5-6 small meals per day.

I need to get back to tracking on MyFitnessPal. I had the app installed on my phone, but it kept crashing and then freezing my Android phone, so I finally took it off. I never added it back onto my new phone, and the spotty wifi here has made it difficult to post online.

But those are excuses.

I can still write stuff down instead of trying to remember everything in my brain. (Not!)

I've written down everything for yesterday and so far today and at some point I'll get it input into MFP.

This feels like a revelation. How many other food addicts have come to this realization on their own? It took about nine months (carb cravings started after Christmas when I indulged for the whole day and then kept indulging, on/off, on/off, on/off. Once you get started....) for this to finally smack me in the face. But I think this is good. I'm excited. I want to be healthy. I want to go back to taking walks and start lifting weights (as soon as the anemia is addressed, doctor's orders).

I'm not suffering. I'm lucky.

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Trouble in River City

I picked up my labs on Tuesday, .25 cent per page (what. ever.) and most things are good, but duh, I'm anemic (11, same as in May so it hasn't gone down either), but I have oxalate crystals in my urine. I need to up my fluid intake.

I feel like I'm constantly carrying liquids around or getting more liquids to drink but evidently it is not enough. It also says to keep away from tea. I drink A LOT of iced tea. Dammit. Also? No berries. Shit. There's more, but I'm short for time.

Also have been having the shits since 5 am and hoping it will cease long enough for me to make an appointment with the Calfresh people in 90 minutes. That would suck (shitting my pants ugh).

So I'll be back later.

Sunday, September 6, 2015

Low Carb Clafouti

This is a MUST make whether you're a DSer, Paleo, or normal weight person...it is THAT good. I made it with fresh raspberries, and oh. my. g*d. SO good. I eat it for breakfast (it's mostly eggs). I like it slightly warm, so 30 seconds in the nuker, then add whipped cream. It is very filling in addition to being delicious. I give all props to I Breathe, I'm Hungry. Every recipe I've made there has come out and been yummy. If you're not reading her, you're missing out.

Now go, you need to make this, today. I mean it.

Low Carb Clafouti

INGREDIENTS
·         1 Tbsp salted butter
·         1 cup unsweetened almond milk (I used regular 2% milk. I am not a fan of almond or soy milk for that matter. Just...yuck.)
·         ¼ cup heavy whipping cream
·         cup granulated sugar substitute (I used Splenda baking blend)
·         ½ tsp cherry extract (I did not use this)
·         1 Tbsp vanilla extract (I would increase this to perhaps 1 1/2 tbsp, or to taste)
·         ½ tsp xanthan gum (I don't know if this is really necessary. It is a small amount, however.)
·         pinch of kosher salt (regular salt is fine, 1/8 tsp)
·         6 eggs
·         1 cup almond flour (I use Trader Joe's almond meal. It tastes really good.)
·         1.5 cups fresh cherries, pitted and halved (or fruit of your choice, see #6 below)

INSTRUCTIONS
1.   Preheat oven to 400 degreeshttp://images.intellitxt.com/ast/adTypes/icon1.png (F.)
2.   Use the butter to grease a 9 or 10" cast iron pan or baking dish, or a large (12) muffin pan (or two 6 muffin pans.) I used a deep dish glass pie plate
3.   Combine the almond milk, heavy cream, sweetener, cherry extract, vanilla extract, xanthan gum, salt, and eggs in a blender and blend for about 10 seconds. I don't know that the xantham gum is necessary, and I am going to back off a little bit on the almond flour--I like a more eggy clafouti.
4.   Add the almond flour and blend for an additional 30 seconds or until smooth.
5.   Pour the mixture into the pan or muffin tins.
6.   Spread the cherries, (raspberries for me, but any fruit you like. Lighter berries like blueberry will sink to the bottom. It won't affect the taste, only the appearance. Peaches might work, too.) cut side up evenly over the top of the batter.
7.   Bake for 18 - 20 minutes if making 4" muffins (or until set & a knife in the center comes out clean.)
8.   Bake for 35 minutes if making in one large pan (or until set & a knife in the center comes out clean.)
9.   Serve warm or chilled.
NOTES
Approximate nutrition information per serving:

Slice from pan (1/8th): 194 calories, 15g fat, 6g net carbs, 8g protein

One "muffin" (1/12th): 129 calories, 10g fat, 4g net carbs, 6g protein



Here's the one I made. Really good, warmed with whipped cream.