Emptiness Hurts

It’s weird how often I go through this problem when I am working in the office.

Sometimes when my tiny little redesigned stomach is causing me problems, I fear that there is something wrong and that I am on the brink of big troubles when in fact I’m just hungry. I’ll be dealing with all kinds of stomach pains and gas pains and discomfort and unhappiness, then I’ll have a small bite to eat and I’ll feel better for a little while. Then the pain will come back and I’ll be afraid there is something wrong again until I make myself have some lunch. Then I feel fine for a while. It’s weird.

I used to know what hunger felt like. I mean, don’t we all? It is a sort of human thing, right? My stomach feels funny, rumble rumble, oh I’m hungry. That’s not what this feels like though. This feels more like when you eat something that’s gone bad and it just sits like a rock in your stomach. I would hope that having something to drink would alleviate the symptoms the way having food does, but it just doesn’t work the same way. I tried drinking water today between 10:00am or so and 11:30 and it didn’t help. The pain and discomfort just kept getting worse. I had a small protein bar snack and felt 80% better. By the time I broke for lunch at about 1:15 it was all back again, full force. I had some chicken tenders and some peanuts. Less than five ounces of food combined, but probably 24 grams of protein or so. Now my stomach feels 95% better.

I’m guessing that by the time the clock strikes 4:00 I am going to be uncomfortable again. This is going to dog me back and forth for the rest of the day. If history has taught me anything, I will be fine tomorrow after a half decent night’s sleep.

The weird thing about this is how often it happens when I am in the office. I don’t know if it’s the traveling to get here, or if it’s the day of the week (office days are Wednesdays), or if it’s some other connection that I haven’t made yet. I don’t know. It’s weird.

I think I am just going to enjoy the brief reprieve while I can and try to get some work done. Here’s hoping I don’t feel like this tomorrow. Fingers crossed, folks.

Week 46 Weigh In

Things are getting weird now.

I posted about my bonus weigh in on Sunday, three days ago. I was down 2.8 pounds after having been up at least a pound each of the previous two Wednesdays. Yeah, I am cheating on my weigh in schedule. Wanna make something of it? I didn’t weigh myself on Monday, but I did on Tuesday and I was down a lot. From Sunday to Tuesday I was down a massive 2.2 pounds. Wow! I didn’t record it on the spreadsheet or on my iPhone. I left it officially unofficial. When I weighed myself this morning for my regular Wednesday weigh in I was up 0.4 pounds since Sunday. That’s half a pound since Sunday, which means I was up 2.6 since yesterday.

Oh boy. I am at 216 even, which matches where I was on March 4th at the 10 month check in, which is also where I was hoping to get back to after last week. What a world, right?

BMI is 26.3 again. Total since surgery is 215.4 again. Total since first check in is at 236 even again.

Yesterday turned out to be a tough day with yet another migraine. I did what I meant to do the last time I had one, which was a week ago last Friday, and made an appointment with my primary care. It was tough to do through the partial blindness and the crushing headache, but I managed. I have an appointment for tomorrow morning. We’ll see how it goes. I expect it to just be a check in that sets up referrals to other doctors, but we’ll see. Let’s hope there is a placebo thing where now that I’ve taken the first baby step toward dealing with this it just goes away. Wouldn’t that be nice?

I had another issue last night as well. I tried to stay up through the headache but I fell asleep on the comfy chair in the living room. After about 45 minutes I got up and went to bed. I slept there for about an hour and then got up and went back to the living room. My head was much better, though still far from all better, and I wanted to spend some time with Jen. We ended up going to bed around 9:30, and I packed it in around 10:00. I woke up about three hours later and couldn’t get back to sleep. The headache was gone and in it’s place was a stomach ache. Shit. I was in and out of sleep until about 5:30 when I finally got up. I drank a water bottle while getting my jogging (yogging) in, and the stomach ache lessened but didn’t go away. I had two protein bars on the drive in to work and that mostly cleared things up. I expect it will come back again as time and digestion do their things.

Yesterday turned into a shitty day. Today is better, but still shaping up to be shitty in it’s own way. Yippee.

At least I still weigh less than I did in my last two weekly check ins. I’ll take that as a win.


The Foamies. I first heard that term from one of the bariatric surgery facebook groups. Sometimes when you eat too fast, or take too big a bite, or don’t chew enough, your food gets caught up trying to get into your newly redesigned stomach. Your body tries to help out by creating a ton of extra saliva. For some of us though, because our stomach is partially blocked, the swallowing reflex temporarily shuts itself off. That means all of that extra saliva sits in your mouth and just stays there. If you force yourself to swallow it your stomach starts to hurt a lot and you cough it all back up. The result is that you’re stuck with a face full of foam. Hence, The Foamies.

I sometimes get The Foamies just by taking vitamin pills. I end up standing over the toilet, or the sink, or a trash barrel, or whatever, just spitting out all of that crap. I just spit, and spit, and spit. Eventually it stops and you can move on with your life. Today I had two lunchtime plans. First, we have a big pile of chicken breasts that are going to go bad soon. I wanted to cook them in the air fryer and then store them in the fridge to have as leftovers for the next couple of days. I snuck upstairs and put them into the air fryer and set a timer for the first half of the cooking time with the intention of flipping them over and then putting them back in for the second half of the cook time.

The flip time coincided with when I needed to take my two afternoon calcium citrate pills. When the timer went off I grabbed my water bottle and my pill caddie for the day and went upstairs to the kitchen. I took the first of the two pills with a gulp of water and then went to the cookin’. When the chicken breasts were flipped over I gulped the second pill and went to work cooking my lunch in the toaster oven. It was a little piece of Purdue frozen chicken patty and some french fries, cooked in the toaster oven on the air fryer setting.

Two seconds after gulping the second calcium pill it hit me. Pain in my stomach and lots of saliva. Shit. The Foamies were hitting me. The toaster oven was supposed to run for 15 minutes and the air fryer was going to finish a couple of minutes before then. While I waited, I spit a ton of foamie into the trash barrel and the sink. It was very unpleasant and thankfully no one was in the kitchen with me. The air fryer finished and I cut open a chicken breast to make sure it was done. It was. I wrapped it all up and put it into the fridge. Project #1, complete. I spit up some more and then the timer for the toaster oven went off. I took out my lunch and measured everything so I could track it on my food spreadsheet. The Foamies persisted for another minute or two but it ended right on time and I started eating lunch.

I ate the chicken patty without incident. I was halfway through my 2.5 ounces of french fries when it hit me again. The Foamies Part Two: Electric Foamie-Boogaloo. Shit. It was a little before 2:00pm. It didn’t stop for an hour. It just kicked my ass. It wiped the floor with my digestive system. It was awful. I would work for a few seconds, cough up some crap for a few seconds, wash/rinse/repeat. Come on, stomach. Cut the shit!

I did eventually finish my lunch. Just a few minutes ago, in fact. The fries were really good. Nice and crispy. I just wish I could have had them while they were still sort of warm. I can understand when it hits me because of a mistake I make while eating. I don’t get why it hits me when I am taking something tiny like a calcium pill. I had a mild case of it this morning due to my morning vitamins too. What the hell? Should I be switching all of my vitamin pills to chewables? I was in my mid teens before I was able to swallow a pill without crushing it up first. I considered it a failure at being a grown up. Now that I may be faced with something like that shame again? I just don’t wanna! I’m almost 52 years old. I should be able to swallow a god damned pill!

The Foamies. The struggle is real, friends. The struggle is real.

It is Wednesday Again

Yesterday was Tuesday, so you know what that means… It’s weigh in day. The numbers were excellent. I am down 5.4 pounds. Can you dig that crazy sound, or what? I am 4.2 pounds away from flipping my total weight’s hundreds column. If next week is as good as this week was… then we could be a week away from that wonderful moment. To quote Clark W Griswald, “Hallelujah. Holy shit. Where’s the Tylenol?”

It’s been a tough week food wise. I wrote about the stomach problems I had on Monday. Yesterday I was okay on that front, mostly, but I came up super short of my protein goal. I need 60 grams a day and I only got to 50. I will remedy that today, thank you very much.

I am working in the office for the second half of the day. My new hire lives in the mid-west and he is in town so we’re going to meet up with him after work and actually exist in person. That means I am going to a public place where people are. I’m okay with this even through my nervous Covid-19 paranoia. It just means I will have to deal with my Covid-19 paranoia, you know? We’re going to get some dinner and that means I will have to order something and then not eat most of it. I plan to bring my little digital scale and not over do it. I’ll have the stop watch on my phone too. They are all going to laugh at me, but I’m okay with it because I lost five and four tenths pounds this week.

I Gave In to The Facebook

I had a rough afternoon today. My stomach was feeling off all day and when it came time for lunch it went bad. Not to get into TMI territory, but there was a small amount of vomit involved. I was trying to have three ounces of turkey and I only got through 1.7 ounces. I did much better with dinner. Jen made beef stew and it smelled so good. I needed to get over whatever was wrong so that I could have some and fortunately I did. It was delicious.

Before dinner though I did something I don’t want to do anymore. I spent a little time on the Facebook. I got today’s Wordle in two tries. If I get it in three tires I post it to Twitter. If I get it in two I post it to the Facebook. So I logged on and posted my success story. Then I checked notifications. Then I joined a couple of Nikon camera groups. Then I vented my food frustrations on a Bariatric Surgery group. Then I perused my timeline a little. Then I came to my senses.

I went to the Nikon groups to ask for suggestions on what the next camera should be. I went to the surgery group to say that my stomach revolted but that I will get through it. I also saw someone who was afraid that he weighed too much and let him know that when I started I weighed even more. I don’t know if it helped at all, but I hope it did. Hell, I’ve lost 140 pounds. If my dumb ass can do it then his can too.

So I cheated on my Facebook ban. Sorry about that. I’ll do better. I just had a tough day but I’m better now.

Surgery: Chosen

I’m home from meeting the doctor who will hopefully be chopping up my innards. The meeting went well as far as I can tell (rhyme!). She talked over the two bariatric surgery options including the pros and cons and I decided which one I want to have. I’ll probably tell ya’ll which one at some point. More likely there will be some future post where I mention it as if you all know what it is already. As if all of you millions of readers hang on every word, right? I’m totally not talking to myself here… crickets… well, talking to myself and a slew of spam accounts… crickets…

Next week I have a Zoom call with the Dietician. I am dreading that one because that’s when I expect to be told all of the delicious and wonderful things I will never be able to eat again. We all know it’s coming. Caffeine and carbonation were just the tip of the banned iceberg. I’m ready for it though. I won’t like it, but it will absolutely be worth it in the end. Don’t forget, in the end the love you take is equal to the love you make. So there. Suck on that, diet pepsi.

Now what do you say I go cook some dinner for my Valentine? Let’s do that.

Less Productive

I’ve completed about half of the projects I set for myself today. The snow cocked it up, even though we only got a little more than a dusting. Is a wet dusting a thing or is that a precipitation oxymoron? Whatever, I shoveled the tiny bit of snow and cleaned off the cars and my back has been royally pissed at me ever since. I did the trash too, and I’m about to cook dinner.

There are a couple of boxes that need to go into the cellar, haven’t done that. There’s a shit load of laundry to do, haven’t done that. The cat left a mess in Bellana’s room, haven’t cleaned that.

I want to but my back stops me every five minutes or so.

Here’s hoping 2022 (2020 too) leads to the elusive weight loss surgery, and that leads to a reduction in stress on my back, and that leads to less back pain.

It probably won’t, but a boy can dream, right?