Wednesday, June 8, 2011

My First Support Group Meeting

The hospital where I had my surgery done had a support group meeting today and for the first time ever I had/made the time to attend. As was an issue for me when I got my lapband surgery most of the attendees were rny patients. There was only one other lapband person. The topic today was how to avoid regain after bariatric surgery. The group leader was a dietitian but the session was pretty good.

Amazingly good despite sticking up my nose in the past about mingling with the rny patients (not because I am stuck up about it but the office seemed to think we needed exactly the same after care). Anyway I was by far the longest post surgery (followed by another guy who had had rny). I actually had quite a bit in common with the second longest since surgery guy. He had regained 20 pounds and felt that he needed strategies while travelling. I could relate quite a bit to some of the problems he had. He mentioned that he had trouble with the fact that he for so long could not eat so many things and then all of a sudden could eat anything and the boundaries were difficult to maintain. He also had trouble shifting from being unemployed to employed and traveling quite a bit.

Another interesting tidbit is that I had lost the most weight and was the only one at the normal bmi range goal. Some were quite early after surgery but most were already regaining some of their weight after hitting a plateau. This was especially interesting that the other lapband person was regaining and did not seem to understand that she could go get a fill. The dietitian said after I introduced myself and provided my stats- "wow that is a lot of weight for a lapband patient"...definitely some reduced expectations in that office for us lapbanders.

One of the activities the dietitian had us do was to brainstorm and write down some of the behaviors that helped us in our weightloss and then some of the behaviors that hindered it. Finally she had us pick three things that help to support our weightloss effort (the three legged stool thing). As a group it seemed that most of us agreed on exercise, eating mindfully and finding support.

The group was mostly good-with the odd strange person (it is funny isn't it how there are just some very strange people in the world).

I did leave valuing this blog community even more than I already do because we have the best support group right here online!!. I also left after thinking about what I need to do to keep this weight off and keep the bouncing range below goal instead of right at the top end of my tolerance levels. Speaking of which..those magical mood enhancing drugs are also having a magical effect on my restriction. The acid reflux has disappeared. My energy has returned and best of all I am not hungry. wahooo :). Long may it last.



Linda said...

I'm glad you're feeling better. Support is obviously huge in being successful, I really don't think I'd be as successful without blogging. I've never been to my hospital's support group post band, but I had to go to a few sessions preband. I always get frustrated with the amount of stuff people don't know about what they are having done. I always wanted to bang my head against a wall by the end.

Annie said...

congrats on finally going to a support group! I haven't been to one, yet, but I do plan to make the time soon. It sounds like you took away some tools to help.

I agree that blogging, and the support we get here is invaluable!

I am so thrilled you are feeling like your old self again.

Amanda said...

I never went to a support group meeting! I was supposed to but since my surgery was so close to christmas the local group canceled their meeting! Plus they were not so welcoming to me like I would have liked. They were mostly bypassers and just weren't interested in me so much!

Glad you are feeling better!!

Alison said...

So glad that you're feeling better. I went to a tiny support group in a strange little village, it was run by 2 rny patients and there was me and a pre op lapband lady. One of the rny ladies just recounted all of her ailments for about 2 hours. I didn't return!

Catherine55 said...

Glad that you're feeling better! That is so interesting about the support group -- all of it. I'm surprised by the dietitian's surprise about how much weight you lost.

I liked the exercise you did, so I wrote out my three helpful things. Here they are:
1. Weighing myself daily;
2. Commiting to exercise; and
3. Blogging.