Thursday, February 25, 2010

The WLS Pick-up Line

I was hit on today. No, not like that.

A woman tried to recruit me to have "the surgery". Little did she know I had already spotted her as a post-op so I totally knew where her pick-up lines were leading.

It started when the supervisor who was giving me a tour of the hospital asked her how she was doing, she replied “Good, the doctor took me off one medicine and put me on five. I’m vitamin deficient and xyz med was irritating my stomach.”

The vitamin deficient totally made me look at her hair…which wasn’t that thin but still thin enough to make me wonder.

So while I was observing the guy next to her, she complimented me on my sweater. I thanked her and explained it was more comfortable than a suit jacket on my arms. She then said she loved her sweater and couldn’t get rid of it despite it coming from the Avenue and being too big “on her now”. For any of my non-fattie readers, the Avenue is a plus-size clothing store. So that was her hint that she was a former fattie. So then she says, “I was really big, and it was hard for me to do my job. So I had ‘the surgery”. Here again, code word although even non-fatties typically know “the surgery” refers to weight loss surgery just as “the pill” refers to birth control. Then she got out her before pictures to show me how wonderful she has done.

As this point I’m quite sure she is trying the polite approach to recruit me, so I tell her that I too had “the surgery” seven years ago then gave her the spiel of how I was over 500lbs, I have lymphdema and lipedema which is partly why I’m so fat….blah blah blah…I’ll bring the picture later.

After lunch I felt I couldn’t take my bottle of Diet Sunkist back with me because I’d be judged, and I wasn’t sure of the drinks policy in the work area.

I showed her my “before picture” but honestly it’s like saying ‘you think I’m FAT now…omg I used to be HUGE’. Why must I explain my size to people? Well in this case I did so she’d turn off the recruitment script.

Oh, and then of course in reply I put asked her if she was a member of ObesityHelp. She said no….bawahaha the recruiter is going to become the recruited. I’m taking the pamphlet with me next week!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

The bigger the better!

I love the Olympics, and figure skating is my favorite of the Winter Games! So when I saw this article today I was overjoyed...for her and for the message it sends to women.

Ice dancer Belbin has put on weight, and she couldn't be happier.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Fatty Fatty 2x4


If a serving of cereal is 150 cals for 3/4 cup then a kid who eats 2 servings will be eating...

=300 calories

1 cup = 200 cals
2 cups = 400 cals

And I did all that math in my head...yes, my shoes are off but its Florida and I wear flip-flops a lot...I promise I didn't need a calculator or my appendages to figure out that math.

So explain why the FDA thinks regulating serving sizes is going to change the way people eat. It's simple math people. So what now we're going to have a generation of obese and stupid kids???

One Bowl = 2 Servings F.D.A May Fix That

The information is there, on the box...and actually some smaller potato chip bags give per serving and entire bag nutritional facts. I'll admit that has NEVER stopped me from eating the entire bag. I mean if I'm to the point of grabbing a snack size bag of Funyuns I'm obviously stressed and usually thankful that the entire bag is less than 400 calories.

I for one can and do eat a serving of cereal; I actually eat less than a serving of some cereal. I have cute little cereal bowls and I put a lot of strawberries on top. I actually feel like it's a huge Saturday morning bowl of cereal because of how the milk makes the berries almost over flow the edge. Total cereal: 1/2 cup

I will admit I don't like reading a label and it stating a serving in oz and not a number. For instance don't tell me a serving of cheese is 1 oz., give me 1/4 cup or how many cubes. And most packages I find that information in the nutritional fact area.

This whole idea reminds me of the idea to make Tylenol by prescription because people are taking too much. Or the FDA wants to reduce the milligrams of the over-the-counter version. Hello, people are just going to take more, lowering the dose isn't going to help the fact people like to pop pills for any reason and if they don't get relief in five minutes they will pop more.

People who are too lazy to read nutritional labels now and figure out the damage of eating a triple serving aren't going to read the new label that does the math for them.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Was it all just a dream?

More like a nightmare.

Yesterday in all of a 140 character Tweet I was told I most likely do not have lymphedema or lipedema, because both are “very rare” and are accompanied with other birth defects. I was told this by an obesity doctor.

Tweet: ppll believe that #genes are responsible for obesity. For the most part, #obesity genes come w on/off switches in response to bodys milieu

My Reply: I'm in the least part, my #obesity is from my #genes...#lipedema and #lymphedema @born2lbfat

Tweetback: probably not Sarah. those syndromes are very rare & present in early childhood, often accompanied by other birth defects.

My reply: Oh, I wish that were true...but I do have both, I'm a rare being. =) Pic of legs @born2lbfat

Tweetback: If that's so, hopefully your doctor is helping. I wish you well in your journey to health.

Then later: There are very few real obesity genes. The shape of your body & how fat distributes is genetic. Most other #obesity...

And again: Real #obesity #genes are present from birth, often accompanied by other birth defects.

And again: We have evolved into believing that cultural &familial #obesity is "#genetic". It isn't. The good news is, it can be healed.

What upsets me the most is this is coming from someone who makes a living “helping” obese patients. I’m not going to name names and call people out, I won’t tell someone they are wrong as quickly as I was. I was simply sharing my experience. From what I read, her MD is in Psychiatry. Her rational makes sense and I’m sure it applies to and helps many people. It’s true, not everyone is fat for the same reasons.

However, it’s bad enough that most doctors are not educated on lymphedema. So to have a doctor who touts themselves as an obesity doctor to not acknowledge the possibility of lymphedema contributing to obesity is just bothersome. At least in the combination of treatment the obese patient with lymphedema will need compression therapy for the affected limbs. Lipedema is rarer, so I am a bit more forgiving. But a quick heads up to ALL medical professionals when I person walks (if they can even walk) into your office with legs that look like this…something isn’t right.

You know for years I was told all my problems were just because I was fat and if I would just eat less I’d lose weight. Even when my legs were filling with fluid and in stages of elephantitis, I was told it was just my weight. When I was FINALLY diagnosed with lymphedema I had hope that with treatment I would one day be “normal”. I began aggressive compression treatment; I was tethered to a compression pump for 6-8 hours a day. My legs were compression wrapped in layers of foam, and bandages from my toes to my groin three days a week. I went to class and to work wrapped up like a mummy, because I had a desire to live a productive life no matter how much discomfort and pain I had to endure. I had gastric bypass surgery, because being closer to a normal weight is part of treating lymphedema, and I was aware that not ALL my weight came from lymph fluid, my poor eating habits did play a role.

About a year after surgery I moved to Miami and saw a lymph specialist. He asked me if my surgeon told me surgery would only help me lose weight above the waist. I replied “of course not”. So then he told me that I didn’t have primary lymphedema as previously diagnosed, I had primary lipedema with secondary lymphedema.

Woohoo, lucky me!!!

As I searched the internet for information (which btw I have NEVER read of lymphedema or lipedema being accompanied by other birth defects) I felt a bit of relief…the fat is not my fault, all my life I never ‘felt’ fat and this is answer, it’s not my fault. Then came the realization, if the fat is not my fault, then there isn’t much I can do to get rid of it either. There is no way to know what fat is from my poor eating habits, and which fat is from lipedema. I’ve made major changes to my eating habits, exercise more and am still fat and will be for life.

I don’t use lipedema as an excuse to just be fat. I want to be healthy, I want to lose more weight, and I work towards that every day. I have lost over 150lbs; I no longer have sleep apnea, or high blood pressure. I’ve never had diabetes. I am the “healthy” fat person…if you don’t count the DVT, TIA, and PFO (omg could that be my other birth defect?)

I agree I am a rare case. And there are many people who resign to thinking their obesity is genetic and they have no control over it. I do not agree, I DO have control over my life, I can control my health within reason, I have control over my weight, if I did not have control I would be over 500lbs again. However, with the lipedema I do not have limited control, and knowing that challenges me to do the most I can to “beat this” with the realization that I will never weigh 120lbs as the insurance charts state as my “normal” weight.

Not normal, but much better.

So as much as I wish the past 10 years of my life were not true, that I did not have lipedema and lymphedema: that the numerous doctors, physical and occupational therapists in two states were wrong about my life sentence of care, treatment, and maintenance of these conditions; that I didn’t endure years of compression therapy, nights of waking up in pain from wraps that slipped and became too tight, hospitalization for painful cellulitis, arguments with insurance companies to get the care I needed in order maintain my conditions.

If only a simple 140 character Tweet could erase all that…but only in my dreams.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Me on Oprah

While I was home last weekend someone asked me about being on Oprah. Honestly, I was surprised because it was so long ago and I wasn't technically "on" Oprah, a video segment of me was shown on Oprah. I never went to Chicago or met Oprah. I had e-mailed the show in response to seeing Stacey Halprin. The first time I saw her on the show was during my senior year in college. I'm quite certain I was skipping class to watch TV in my dorm room and I saw Stacey speaking of how her weight embarassed her and kept her from doing things in life and I actually started to write Oprah a letter that day saying the biggest problem I have with my weight is that it wasn't a problem. It didn't bother me enough to want to change it, while I didn't let my weight keep me from doing things in life it soon caught up with me. After I saw the follow-up segment on Stacey's weight lose surgery I wrote an e-mail to show to tell how Stacey had long been an inspiration to me. To my surprise the show called me months later when they were planning another follow-up show with Stacey.

One of the first segments I saw.

This is the segment to which I replied.

This was my segment, I have the video on VHS maybe I should look into getting it digital.