Today marks one week since the surgery. Valerie is getting better and better as each day passes. She has only taken pain meds one more time since we stopped after the initial 24 hours and that was a half a pill that night.
Valerie continues to watch her favorite cooking shows, much to my chagrin, but she pointed out that it really doesn’t matter which shows she watches, there are ads for food, restaurants etc. EVERYWHERE. ‘Tis true. I compare it to the break up of a relationship. As soon as it happens, you hear every flipping love song ever written on the radio, even on the Muzak systems in stores, back to back. They’ve been playing all along but you don’t notice them until you experience their meaning. With this type of operation and permanent change in a life, there is a certain amount of mourning that transpires and I think perhaps Valerie is practicing “immersion” therapy.
Every day means more movement and that’s good. She’s able to sip more liquids at a time, but isn’t getting all 60 ounces per day that they recommend. She says it doesn’t appear that she is dehydrated from the color of the urine, but I’d like her to get more in. We were able to change-up the liquid intake to add some chicken broth and some cream of mushroom soup – strained so there are no mushroom pieces – and some thinned pudding. She is starting to get a bit frustrated by the diet, though she understands the process and the need for the progression. She just wants to be a the stage where she can have something more “substantial”. She has said that she just wants to chew something. Her mother said she should take a bite of chicken, chew and then spit it out, but that’s a whole other eating disorder! 🙂
For the two weeks prior to the surgery I followed along with her on the 40g a day carb diet and lost 8 lbs myself. Since the surgery I haven’t been eating normally. I can’t seem to pinpoint the exact cause. I do not want to eat in front of her at this point. She tells me its ok but I just don’t want to be THAT person and eat the things she can’t. I know I need to eat but it seems like my mind isn’t quite following along. When I had to go out for appointments of my own and/or shopping expeditions, I found myself hitting the drive thru’s of McDonalds and Wendy’s. Hostess should never have come back, ’nuff said. Since the Sunday prior to the surgery I’ve had daily bouts of IBS and while it’s partly due to the diet, I am sure it is also due to my nerves about Valerie, the surgery and the aftermath. I have always had my nerves manifest themselves in different ways. Even when I have eaten relatively healthy items, the effects have been the same. I guess it’s something I just need to work through. A friend, and neighbor, who has been through this surgery told me that I will lose weight too — which I’m ok with — but I don’t think it’s meant to happen this way.
Today marks the first day she is on her own. I have to return to work. I left her with some of the things she can eat and drink, but beyond that I won’t be there to take care of her. She has done very well and honestly I haven’t done too much except be there for her. Valerie is very independent and while I am glad, I get frustrated with her when she tries to do too much. I know she’ll be fine, but I worry just the same.
Tomorrow we go see Dr. Landerholm for a follow-up. As of yesterday,. Valerie has lost 13 pounds. Despite the fact that a liquid diet will cause that effect, she is thrilled. We both are.
**CORRECTION** Valerie has lost 19 pounds to date, not 13. ☺