So…it is really weird to not really be hungry. In fact, most of the time I do not even feel like eating or drinking my protein shakes. I have to try to keep myself on a schedule. Occasionally, I feel a little bit hungry, but only sometimes. What I’m not experiencing, is the overwhelming desire to eat or even binge.
I also have not really had any cravings. I can remember only one time since the surgery where I had a craving for something. My sister and her family made cheeseburgers for dinner one night. I do not know why, but the smell was so mouth-watering. I have not really craved food for over a week. I have been concentrating on healing, getting well, dealing with pain, walking, taking vitamins, drinking enough water, and eating the right foods at the right time. I have not really had time to really experience a craving.
When they made those burgers and walked into the room with them on their plates, internally I was like, “OMG GIVE ME A CHEESEBURGER! NOW!!” I was a little afraid that if I hadn’t still been struggling to stand up because of pain, I might have dashed across the room and tore through all their cheeseburgers a la Cookie Monster, “Nom! Nom! Nom! Nom! Nom!”
What I said was, “Gee, those burgers smell good,” while I sat there staring at their plates, mouth-watering, silently cursing them for eating those yummy, yummy burgers in front of me.
The feeling passed quickly and I did not eat a burger, thankfully. I would have gotten really sick if I had. Plus, I probably only would have been able to eat one or two bites. Since then, I have not really craved any particular food at all.
I have to say, as a food lover, it is the strangest feeling. I have written many times about how much I like delicious food. I know I still do, but I have noticed that my idea of delicious is changing a little bit. Let me explain.
I noticed in the hospital that I could not really stand anything that is sweet. That still holds. I struggle every day with these darn protein shakes because of the sweet taste. The smell, the taste, they make me nauseous and even cause me to sometimes experience dumping.
One day, I ran out of regular soy milk and used the vanilla soy milk. Big mistake. The vanilla soy milk has a small amount of sugar in it and is sweet. I drank the protein shake. Within minutes, I was sick to my stomach, hot, dizzy, and I generally felt awful. I was sure that I was going to vomit. I went into my room, turned the fan on, and started removing some clothes. I laid down on the bed for a while and then made several trips to the bathroom. This feeling lasted about a half an hour or so.
This reaction is called dumping. Basically, you overload your system with too much of something that it can no longer process efficiently and you get sick. I never want to experience that again.
I am not really loving pureed meat. Pureed chicken is OK, but I cannot abide the thought of whipped fish or beef. So, I either get all of my food protein from chicken, or I drink more protein shakes. I’m hating protein shakes, so I have definitely been researching alternatives.
I am currently trying to get most of my protein from vegetables, specifically legumes. I have been eating lentils, black beans, baked beans, refried beans, pinto beans, and humus. This has been working very well for me because I can add an additional boost of protein by adding daiya cheese.
My other source of protein is eggs. I can have one egg, with a little bit of daiya cheese. I scramble it, keeping it soft and moist. I then eat it with apple sauce and sometimes one saltine cracker.
Now, I do love chicken, beans, lentils, humus just as much as ever, so that has not changed. I guess once I move out of the pureed phase and onto soft foods, if I can stomach fish or beef.
My meals right now are a half a cup of food. That is four tablespoons per meal. Two tablespoons must be protein, the remaining two are fruits and/or vegetables. In between each meal, I have to drink a protein shake and take vitamins. I also have to make sure that I eat slowly and take at least 30 minutes to eat. Do you know how hard it is to make 4 tablespoons of food last 30 minutes? It is hard.
Here is a picture of what a four tablespoon pureed meal looks like:
That is two tablespoons of beans with cheese, one tablespoon humus, one tablespoon butternut squash.
Here is a current picture of me at 281. Go back to this post and see if you can notice any difference between the pictures of me before surgery and this one. I know it has only been 12 days since my surgery, but I think it shows in my face that I have lost weight.
I may have lost more weight since, but I do not know. I have to go and get a new scale. My sister’s scale is screwy. I weighed 298 just days before my surgery. Three days after my surgery, my sister’s scale said I weighed 310. The day before I went to the doctor to get weighed, the scale said I weighed 294. The doctor’s scale said 281. Today her scale says 280. So, do I subtract 12 or 14 pounds from that and believe that I lost that much since Friday? I guess it is possible, but I don’t think so. I’ll hold off on updating my weight until I get a more accurate scale.