Sunday, February 27, 2011

Gall Blabber

Hmmm, it's been rather quiet around here on the Onederland blog front. For anyone wondering what they might have been missing this week in my life, here's a snapshot of what I've been talking about:

gall bladdergall bladdergall bladdergall bladdergall bladdergall bladdergall bladdergall bladdergall bladdergall bladdergall bladdergall bladdergall bladdergall bladdergall bladdergall bladdergall bladder.

Gall. Bladder.

In an effort to spare you all redundancies, I've avoided my blog this week. I am boring.

I sleep, dream, and eat gall bladder these days -- and that last one you can take literally, as I'm on the weirdest food intake plan of my life in an attempt to soothe the riled bile beast in my stomach.

Good news is -- you can't eat any fat when your gall bladder is angry. Bad news is, I probably still have to have surgery.

I'm subsisting on zero fat yogurt (with blueberries for breakkie, and cinnamon and nutmeg, delicious) and low-fat cottage cheese for lunch and dinner, with a few veggies and fruit bits thrown in for good measure.

I eat the same amount of calories as before the G.B. went ballistic, so I'm not drastically dropping weight. (You know that I secretly fantasized that I would, even tho the gallbladder has NOTHING to do with weight control/loss.)

The other positive in all this is that wine, thank the Ambrosia Goodness, has no fat. Praise be.

If it weren't for a few glasses of tannin and resin now and then, I'm pretty sure I'd be a calcified calcium deposit by now.

Doctor's appointment for Tuesday, with the surgeon, in which I fully expect to be told that we are on like bacon for a Da Vinci style laproscopic removal of the G.B. Will see if I can possibly milk a week off work for this.... another possible upside to this situation.

Truth is, even though I can seemingly control the worst of the tummy pain by avoiding fat as much as possible, that seems to be taking quite a toll. I am so tired all the time, and get fuzzy headed at the end of the day.

I have always read that healthy fats are truly essential for the body -- now I really understand what that means! Without them, the body just gets extremely tired ... I've suddenly sprouted insanely dark circles under my eyes.

Thanks everyone for the information, good cheer and good wishes! I'll be back soon.

Saturday, February 19, 2011


Against my heartfelt wishes, it looks like I'll be going under the knife.

After proving myself a miserable failure at a HIDA exam this Thursday (despite THREE attempts at getting radioactive dye into my gallbladder), my doctor decreed that there's a blockage in the duct between my liver and gallbladder.

A sonogram shows nothing, but the HIDA test was conclusive: the gallbladder is not getting any bile from the liver (meaning it's backing up and slowly giving me jaundice, which makes me feel like I'm a W. Somerset Maugham short story).

The docs want to rip my poor, inoffensive, and otherwise un-inflamed gallbladder out because this one nasty duct has gone rogue. I don't quite see the point, but also realize it would be unwise to continue to irritate my liver.

I'm very unhappy at having this situation imposed upon me; I'll admit to being vain over my general heartiness and good health. This makes me feel like I've failed in some way.

It would be nice to ignore the doctors and symptoms and pretend this is nothing, but I'm in near-constant pain on my right side. Not bad, but .... ever-present. It will only get worse, I know.

There's nothing for it but to grit my teeth, get a second-opinion out of general common sense, and then submit to the obvious. I am feeling rundown in a way I've never felt before, tired and draggy. My skin is dull, my hair kind of flat. In short, I'm far from my normal self.

I hate the idea of surgery, even laproscopic, and really hate that I'm still so big and having to deal with doctors. ( I feel like they are all judging me and blaming me for my health problem because I'm overweight, even if they don't say anything directly to me).

Eating is all kinds of weird b/c of the gallbladder situation, but I'd say it's .... well, it's ok. I probably am eating a bit more than I should (the ache increases when I get hungry, to very painful levels), but am making good choices. Still, it's calories at the end of the day that count.

I've been warned by my docs about a low-fat diet, which I bristled at because really, how do they know I don't already follow a low-fat diet? I get quite paranoid and touchy around doctors, don't I?

Monday, February 14, 2011


Was out and about early this morning for an assignment and came across this scene. Young love in action.

The poor fellow, who you can't see, was bravely standing out in cold and winds with this mega-bouquet of red balloons. He waited a long time for his lay-abed girlfriend to get up, come outside and find him.

I had to give the guy points for staring down everyone who was tempted to snicker at him as they passed by. The girlfriend was rendered speechless when she saw him.

We are headed out tonight to a dinner party at a friend's house. Should be fun, but fraught with danger. Another friend (on WW, no less!) decided to bake macaroons and red velvet cupcakes to bring as dessert.

There will be wine, cheese, and then some kind of spaghetti for dinner, I'm told. I plan on eating some cottage cheese before I go so I am not hungry. I find that if my appetite is dulled it's a lot easier to turn down food, even alluring things like cupcakes. Of course, sometimes being around them but not eating them sets off a binge later, but .... I'll worry about that when I start to feel like it might happen.

I wanted to share this picture earlier in the week but couldn't get it uploaded. Knicks vs. the Clippers. Was a lot of fun! I didn't know basketball games were this entertaining! And the seats were great (even tho very high up) and only $10. Can't beat that!
Jeremy Sisto was there from Law and Order, Tracy Morgan from 30 Rock and one of the Sopranos guys. They were shown on the jumbotron screen (I would find that very embarrassing) from their courtside seats!

The cool thing about this night was that I was very rushed, coming from work, ready to eat something but without time to go find a healthy option. In the end, I grabbed a nathan's hot dog (but didn't eat the bun) and an order of fries, which was thankfully small, and ate them with no regrets, and no guilt. When at the ballgame, one wants to have fun, not stress and stress and stress over things they cannot change.

I didnt' think about food for the rest of the night. Victory for me, even if the Knicks lost.

Happy V-Day, everybody!

Friday, February 11, 2011

Super Fast

Rushing to pump out some end of week details, a la the old Hot 100 Friday Updates.

Strange week in which many of my grand plans for major workouts had to be altered at the last minute, and yet I more or less stayed on track eating-wise, and faith-and-begorrah I might be fooling myself, but the skinny jeans are feeling just a wee bit looser this Friday. First time I've put them on in over a week.

Monday was not a great day, Tuesday was very good, and I was able to walk to work and hit the treadmill later with nary a complaint from my naughty neuroma. I am ecstatic!

The temptation is to jump back on the treadmill (with better shoes, this time) and start running again but I am fighting it. The neuroma is not gone -- I can still feel it twang from time to time when I walk. It's just mitigated by the orthotics. I have every hope it will eventually make like a dodo bird and disappear forever, but I know, deep in my heart, I should not start slamming my feet into a treadmill right now.

On my other medical situation, the tummy, a sonogram reveals the presence of ... gallstones. Go figure. (The way they teach this in medical school, I have learned, is that gallstones usually can be found with the five f's: female, fat, fertile, forty and fair. Give or take a few years, I qualify on all counts.)

However, there's no evidence yet that the gallstones are bothering me, or causing my digestive drama. So... more tests to come this week. My pain has subsided considerably since I stopped eating raw veggies for lunch. But it flares now and again, depending on what I eat.

There's more I want to say with pictures, but I will have to upload later as I'm at work and Big Brother watcheth!

More tonight, and I look forward to visiting your blogs to see everyone's progress. Thanks for al the kind comments re: my medical malfunctions this week. Really helps cheer me up!

Monday, February 7, 2011

I Hate My Stomach

It's on strike. Has been since Saturday night when I ate a lovely piece of homecooked salmon, some mashed yams and asparagus.

My fancy-schmancy stomach decided it didn't like something in there, and so M and I had to suffer through another, er...symphonic night.

On Stupor Bowl Sunday (that one's for you, Polar's Mom), I had a small breakfast (orange pepper omelet and a few bites of bacon), then hit the gym, and then later in the day had Chobani yogurt, a handful of M's croutons (which he is not supposed to bring in the house but does anyway) and a banana.

I ask you, is there anything in there to rage about? NO! My stomach is a spoiled, whiny teenager. It doesn't like bananas now, apparently (it probably still loves the fattening croutons tho). I was gassy and bloated all night, and again this morning. I've had enough already!

Doctor's office called, I have some results back it seems but don't know what they are yet.

So, in the midst of my digestive angst (which is not necessarily making me eat less, it's just that I worry more about what I'm eating), I went shopping on an emtpy stomach.

And I got very hungry. And some items fell into my shopping cart that really had no business being there.

Thankfully, when I got up to the checkout counter and spread out all my goods, the visual array of my choices hit me right between the eyes. There were mushrooms, chard, beans and all sorts of good things, right next to two chicken quesadillas, three pre-made meatballs and a packet of chocolate chip cookies.

I had to swallow my embarrassment and tell the counter clerk to please set aside the cookies and the quesadillas. I felt kind of silly doing it, but he didn't bat an eye.

It was a good thing I didn't bring all that food home. My stomach would have killed me.

Tonight I made this recipe from NYTimes Recipes for Health: Mushroom and Greens Gratin (the next time I have 4 hours to kill I'll make the Slow Cooked Beans and Kale). I didn't have the right cheese (I used Asiago) and I only used two eggs instead of three, but it turned out nice and crispy and fairly flavorful.

At this moment, this has NOT hurt my stomach yet. Praise be. I hope it calms down. I'm really starting to think there's something seriously wrong with me!

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Saved by Michael Jackson

Got to the gym today despite complete lack of enthusiasm for breaking any kind of sweat or accelerating my heart rate.

It was blah city today. I just couldn't motivate. After 30 listless and boring minutes on the elliptical, I was about to pull the plug.

Then, through my earphones, a voice started whispering. It was a man. The words weren't clear, but I was compelled to listen. It was a message, just for me: "Don't Stop 'Til You Get Enough, Ish."

Alright, I added the Ish, but it did seem like Michael Jackson was speaking directly to me. He popped on the video screen, all swiveling hips and elfin moves.

This sent me off on a long, stream-of-consciousness sort of thought about how much I like to dance, and how fun it is to dance to old Michael Jackson songs, and how much I enjoyed dancing at my friend's wedding last year.

Then I remembered I've just been invited to another wedding this summer, and I thought about how I won't wear such high heels that I almost kill myself dancing, and then I thought that hopefully I will be able to find a better dress than the gray sack I wore last year, and so on, and so on....until, suddenly, I was energized again!

I finished my hour and did my lifts and toddled home and now am preparing to go to a friend's for part of the Stupor Bowl. Just downed a big bowl of Chobani to keep hunger at bay. There are sure to be loads of snacks. Boat loads. My plan is to ignore them and haul M out of there as fast as I decently can. We have a low-cal supper planned for when we get back home. There's really no need for me to eat there at all.

Happy Stupor Bowl, everybody!

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Living in the Land of Make Believe

Got a rude awakening this week, my friends. A very nasty little reminder why SOD (the scale of doom) has been relegated to the cornfields for the past six months or so.

I know for many people SODs are valuable tools. For me, SOD is something invented for the Spanish Inquisition. It is a torture device that never gives me a straightforward answer. One day it's up, one day it's down.

It's like when women were thrown in water to see if they were witches. Any of those who floated (as I surely would have!) or could swim were obviously in league with the devil, and yanked out to be burned at the stake. Those who sank and drowned...well, death was the price they had to pay in order to be declared innocent.

Either way, there was no good answer. That's what SOD is like to me.

After getting a glimpse of the GINORMOUS number at the Doc's office last week (rationalized away by the big snow boots and clothes I wore) I climbed onto the gym scale on Tuesday night. I shouldn't have gotten on at night, of course, and in clothes....but still, I was shocked.

According to that scale, I've not lost one pound since..oh, November! Now I know for a fact that my pants are much looser. I have gotten comments from non-family members that I've visibly lost weight. So W.T.F???????

I hate SOD. Hate. Not getting back on for weeks and weeks.

But where's the make believe in all this? Well, I admit to suffering from a common dieting disease: fairy-taleitis.

You see, fairy-taleitis makes me think that I can take off pounds at a magical rate, and that the scale will instantly respond. Fairy-taleitis also makes me overestimate the impact of the days when I do eat "clean" and go to the gym, and underestimate the impact of days when nibbles sneak in and my movement is nil.

It's so much easier in the land of make believe, isn't it? Until you try to bring your pretend world and your real world into synch -- that's when the gray matter explodes.

Despite my momentary loss of confidence, I stayed on track this week. Tuesday night's little shock therapy moment did me no good, I will admit. I teetered on the corner of Hopeless and Despair for a good hour or two, before convincing myself to head on over to Tomorrow is Another Day Street.

Happily, I was able to walk to work once this week in my new orthotics and the report is positive! A few funny feelings in the toe, but overall very good. I have hopes of the twinges going away completely very soon.

Would you like to see a picture of my walk this morning?

OK, one more.
So the feet are holding their own, and the tummy is too. That's because I haven't eaten any veggies for about two weeks now. Doctor's reports expected soon, can't wait to see what the mystery results are. At this point, I'm beginning to think I'm just old and can't digest vegetables anymore!

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Patterns Emerge

Every wondered how somebody can gain/lose, gain/lose the same...oh, I don't know, 8 to 12 lbs over and over again without somehow breaking through?

Turns out it's pretty easy to do. You just amp up your focus for a few weeks, and then, after about a month (or a little less) when clothes start to get looser and you are finally close to back where you want to be, you lose your long-game mentality.

Your focus gets a little lopsided, a little fuzzier. You start allowing yourself things that you didn't before. A lot of "just this one time" and "Oh, a bite won't hurt" starts to creep in.

Worse, some of the gym emphasis slides away. It's hard to keep up the intensity (to say nothing of general consistency). This is where I'm at now. Just starting to close in on the loss to get back to my second lowest adult weight ever (which is, sadly, not that low) and I'm sabotaging again.

I've been doing this for over a year! Time to make it stop. This is the time that I generally wander a little bit off path and take the foot off the gas pedal. What has to happen for this time to be different?

Well, I need to stay strong on the simple things: write down what I ate every day and what I plan to eat the next day (noting any deviations) make it to the gym 5 times a week, and make time for some extra movement during the day (as simple as a 10 minute walk around the block). My eating rules -- no eating while standing, 20-minutes for each meal (min) and a 9-inch plate -- are to be followed with no exceptions. Wine has to be for the weekend, in small amounts.

Otherwise, it's porker city for me, for sure.

Medical update: I got my orthotics yesterday! So far so good. The worst foot, the left one, feels much better already. The right insert is a little weird, but hopefully will settle soon and feel more natural.

Tummy was poked and prodded yesterday. I should talk to the doctor in a few days and find out if my gall bladder (which digested a chocolate chip cookie and fried fish fine on Sat night) is sickly. As long as I don't eat veggies, I'm fine. Oh, the irony. I spend a year + training myself to eat healthily and this is the thanks I get.

By the way, Jackie at, thanks for visiting my site. I've tried several times to leave you a comment but I can't seem to enable the feature on your site. I click on comment, but nothing happens. What am I doing wrong?