Yesterday marked one week and one day since surgery and the first day Valerie has left the house during that time. Every day is a little bit easier. Getting up, showered, dressed and “beautified” is still a bit physically draining, but Valerie is taking it all in stride. She’s been very good at listening to her body and resting when the little voices inside say “hey… we’re tired over here!!” To be clear… that was just this writer taking creative license. Valerie does NOT have little voices in her head. At least not any that I can hear! 😉 But I digress. Daily acts of living are getting easier and easier despite the fact that it takes a bit longer. We celebrate each success and continue to have a positive outlook.
It doesn’t hurt that the scale continues to make its downnward spiral.
The drive to Edmonds was pretty uneventful save for me trying to make up time we lost with stopping for gas, but I managed to get us there on the dot! We didn’t wait too long for Jillian, Dr. Landerholm’s assistant, to invite us in. First stop: The Scale. What had once been the appartus that struck fear on each visit was now a welcome friend. Eager to find out what their scale said, Valerie kicked off her shoes, handed me her purse and stepped right up. Down 26 pounds. Weight loss is to be expected with a weeks worth of a liquid diet, but this is great.
As we waited for Dr. Landerholm Valerie told me that she has noticed the weight loss in her face. The double chin is gone. THE DOUBLE CHIN IS GONE!! Unfortunately when you are with a person every day, you don’t always immediately see the differeces in their physical appearance right away. Ok, yes, that’s a bit of a cop out and an excuse for not noticing right away, but it’s partially true. I think if I sat and stared at her for a period of time as I tried to asses the change in her appearance she’d think I was being a creeper. To my credit I DID notice that her arms feel a bit skinnier. I even told her that. Her reply: “I’m not trying to lose weight in my arms”. We both laughed for a bit on that one!
Dr. Landerholm was pleased with the progress thus far. He reassured her that the learning process is just that, and he was impressed with her restraint while eating the cream of mushroom soup — strained so no mushroom pieces were ingested. Rather than take a spoonful at a time, she just dipped the spoon into the soup and then licked the spoon. It provides just enough to get the taste without taking too big of a “gulp” and risking the uncomfortable feeling of it being stuck, or taking extra long to get down. The Dr. asked about different things — pain level (little to none internal, a bit of pain around the incision where they removed the stomach), bodily functions (she is normal at this stage though if the loose stool continues into week three or if the frequency increases we are to call him), whether or not she has thrown up (no, thankfully), and her energy level. He looked at the incisions and they all look pretty good. One has a bit of reddness, but we will keep an eye on that and get some lotrimin or use Neosporin if necessary. Dr. Landerholm declared Valerie to be right on schedule and doing very well and he gave her a green light to start the pureed part of the diet last night.
All in all this journey is progressing as scheduled and that included stopping to smell the roses!