• Jerle (CW: Suicide)

    CW: Suicide

    I didn’t know I was trans when Jerle (Damiya, Kate) took her own life. I had just been diagnosed with a pituitary macroadenoma the year before. When I said I was starting testosterone replacement therapy while talking with her on IRC, she immediately told me that I was taking the wrong hormone. I didn’t understand at the time, but of course she was right. I don’t know why I’m writing this right now other than this story has been stuck in my throat for a long time now, and I just want to get it out of my head.

    I was, as far as I know, the last person to talk to her alive. She was on the #elitistjerks IRC channel, and had been for years (as had I). She posted something similar to what she wrote on Twitter in IRC, and I messaged her directly on IRC to… I have no idea what. Stop her? I guess. It is hard in hindsight to look at the person I was back then and have any idea what I was thinking or doing. I was a shell of a person, with the first cracks of who I would become just starting to show. I just knew someone was hurting, and I wanted to help. Instead what I got was years where that last conversation just pops into my head at the most random moments. She was so resigned to her fate - content even - with what was going to happen. It was haunting then, and became more haunting when I eventually transitioned myself.

    I wish I knew then what I know now. About myself, about anything really. When I eventually got past the mental block I had that prevented me from transitioning myself, she was my first thought. Is that how I was going to end up? I was in a very different situation, but I have definitely had moments since transition where things got really dark (this week has been a pretty good example). Something about my brain is just wired to try to survive instead at all cost. I don’t think I’m capable of that sense of peace she had at the end, I’ve never known anything close to it.

    Anyway, there was really no point to this story other than to get it off my chest. I wish I still had the IRC log, but I don’t really need it. I can see every character perfectly rendered in a tmux session that is still running in my brain. Maybe now I can finally detach from that session? 🤷🏻‍♀️

  • Her Name Was Zoey


    Last Saturday, my friend and metamour Zoey Frandsen (Twitter, Facebook) passed away unexpectedly at the age of 32. Zoey was a polyamorous, pansexual trans woman. There is now an obituary which deadnames her, treating her chosen, legal name as if it was some kind of nickname. There is a picture of her before she transitioned, with that same sad stare so many of us trans people have before we find our true selves. I don’t know that person, I never met them, and I know for a fact that is not how Zoey would want to have been remembered.

    I understand the family is in a difficult position - like so many of us, Zoey didn’t feel she could open up to her more conservative, traditional family about her gender identity, her dysphoria, or the joy she felt living as the gender she truly felt was hers. She had even started on that process - opening up a dialog with her mother, considering maybe even meeting with her so they could start to get to know each other again. Of course, with COVID such travel wasn’t really possible, and nobody expects to be struck down suddenly at the age of 32. So many of us don’t plan for the proper legal protections, to make sure our unmarried partners have the ability to make decisions after our death.

    In Caitlin Doughty’s ‘Protecting Trans Bodies in Death’ Caitlin discusses some of the perils of being a trans person in death - the foremost among them being deadnamed and misgendered after the point which you have no power to defend yourself.

    Having spoken to Zoey’s family, I know they don’t understand much if anything about being transgender. That isn’t surprising - the number that gets thrown around pretty frequently is that 80% of Americans don’t think they know someone who is transgender. Zoey’s family never got to build a relationship with their daughter, and so they are trying to mourn the son they thought they knew.

    Remembering Zoey

    Since we don’t have the power to make sure Zoey is remembered how she would want to be in any legal sense, I’ve decided to write this to make sure that if someday, somewhere, someone Google’s her name, they get the chance to know a little bit about the person Zoey wanted to be remembered as, and not the identity she fought so hard to part with.

    Zoey was funny. Zoey struggled with mental illness. Zoey loved video games, and bad jokes, and insisted that birds weren’t real. Zoey had a dorky laugh. Zoey was a welder. Her favorite threat was that she was going to build a locker just so she could shove us nerds into it. Zoey was a nerd. I don’t know how many Warhammer minis she painted, but it was a bunch. Zoey was polyamorous. She had a number of loving, caring partners that she was in comitted relationships with. Zoey had a powerful butt - we joked it could turn coal into diamonds. Zoey had an amazing laugh, and a great smile. Zoey was so happy when she got her name legally changed.

    All of these things were true of Zoey. I don’t know that other person that the obituary talks about (and I implore you to not try to find it if you don’t know her deadname). The person I knew was a woman full of life, and joy at being able to live as her true gender. And so that is how I choose to remember her. I’d ask that you remember her that way too.

    Zoey & Morgan:

    Zoey & Morgan

    Zoey & Erika

    Zoey & Kat

    Zoey & Kat with Zoey being very Zoey

    Terra, Zoey, Morgan, & Sam:

    Terra, Zoey, Morgan, & Sam

    Zoey & Morgan Laughing:

    Zoey & Morgan Laughing

    Zoey & a Porg & Erika

  • Absolute Tapestry Effect

    (Greetings: This blog existed in some form before I transitioned. I've decided that I want to maintain that history. This was the last post, written a month before my egg cracked (before I realized I was transgender))

    It has been almost 5 years since I posted on this blog about the discovery of my prolactinoma/pituitary macroadenoma that ravaged my endocrine system and body for what my doctors think was more than a decade. My life has changed in unbelievable ways since then, and I thought I should make another post, but didn’t know what it should be about. I no longer felt like  I was forced to live with the frustration of not knowing what was wrong with me, or  that my life was destined to end before thirty. Everything was new and I didn’t feel like I had anything to talk about because I was too busy (finally) living.

    Then, this morning, I was listening to the final episode of the first season of my current favorite podcast - I Only Listen to the Mountain Goats - and they were discussing the last song from the album All Hail West Texas, “Absolute Lithops Effect”. Around the 16 minute mark, John Darnielle and Joseph Fink  began a discussion about the idea of periods of time when you’re waiting for your life to begin. I now realize that that is exactly what my twenties were - the period when I lived someone else’s life, until I returned to mine.

    Some time after the tumor first started the “benign” process of changing my body and my mind, I started to feel a strange sort of dissociation. I could remember being social, being at least somewhat physically active, being physically attracted to people. I could remember driving into Philadelphia after work to hang out with a girl I was friends with who I wanted to date, but never expressed my interest (and who, when I lost all sense of ambition and attraction, I lost touch with). I could remember all of that, but they weren’t my memories anymore - or, at least, they weren’t the memories of the person who I was at the time. They felt like remembering someone else’s life. That version of me couldn’t imagine putting that much effort into much of anything.

    Moments of Waiting

    “Even the things that were really terrible at the time, they all lead me to this life that I really like, and if I change any of them - even the ones that at the time were terrible - I don’t know if I would end up at this life again.” -Joseph Fink, paraphrasing Jeffrey Cranor

    John and Joseph go on to talk about these moments of waiting - these periods that, in hindsight, were really just waiting for the next stage in your life to start. Around the 20:20 mark, Joseph discusses how he at one point was in the process of interviewing for a job writing at Bioware, and how “that would have been so exciting at the time, but then none of this would have happened”. A couple minutes later he discusses an idea (quoted above) his partner on “Welcome to NightvaleJeffrey Cranor expressed, and which is something that I’ve always referenced the end of the TNG episode Tapestry to explain my feelings on.

    It was at this moment that I knew I finally had a blog post to write here, almost 5 years after the last one.


    “I don’t think that I accepted that I wasn’t going to die young until I was 26 or 27” -John Darnielle,  Absolute Lithops Effect

    Up until I was 26 or so, I had assumed I wouldn’t live to see 30. I was 600lbs, I had no motivation, no ambition. The only friends I had any regular contact with were my two best friends from high school and the people I met playing World of Warcraft. They and my family are the only reasons I did actually make it to 30.

    When you think you’re going to die young - either due to some sense of predestination or, in my case, just because of the numbers - you don’t really make any plans for the future. I don’t remember a specific moment when I realized I was going to make it, I wasn’t going to die in my parent’s basement.  Perhaps there wasn’t one moment, but a series of them, when the assumptions I’d made about how and when my life would end all crumbled.


    “I remember in college talking to my dad about what I wanted to do with my life, and I described exactly my life right now” -Joseph Fink, Absolute Lithops Effect

    I remember sitting in my father’s classroom (he taught Drafting and CAD at the high school I went to) in middle and high school, reading the WarCraft 2, Diablo and StarCraft manuals. Absorbing the art by Metzen and Samwise, reading everything  I could about the town of Tristram, the Alliance and the Horde, and the United Earth Directorate. I remember knowing then that I wanted to work for the company that made those games, probably as a programmer because I didn’t know I’d end up going into Systems Administration/Systems Engineering at the time.


    “Some of that was sitting around waiting to see when the thunderbolt was gonna strike"  -John Darnielle,  Absolute Lithops Effect

    Nine months after the second blog post about my prolactinoma, where I discussed starting dating finally at the age of 31 and imagining for the first time in a long time what a life not lived alone would be like, the thunderbolt struck for me. I met Caeli, the woman who is now my wife - we met on an online dating site, moved to chatting on Steam, and went on our first date to see Big Hero 6 the night of her 27th birthday.


    I am not someone who believes in destiny. I realize that it is a big universe, and that on a big enough scale, things that shouldn’t happen very often happen all the time.

    And so it would be with Caeli, Blizzard, and myself. When I met Caeli, I had just returned a week earlier from BlizzCon 2014, where I had interviewed for a Systems Engineer position working primarily on their Big Data platform. I came home hopeful that I would get the job and end up moving from  Virginia to California. I figured I would still go on dates, but I wasn’t expecting that I’d find anything long term in the amount of time I had left in the DC area.

    Just 3 weeks  after meeting Caeli, I got my official offer letter from Blizzard. Caeli was working part time at a Sprint store and hadn’t really started a career yet, but knew she wanted to be a Software Tester and maybe someday a game designer. Neither of us remembers who said it, but one of us half jokingly asked “what if we moved together”.

    3 years and one BlizzCon proposal later, we are happily married and both working at Blizzard. Had things happened just a little differently, we might never have met at all.


    [youtube [www.youtube.com/watch](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=koRiK8KKt2g])

    There are many parts of my youth that I’m not proud of. There were… loose threads - untidy parts of me that I would like to remove. But when I pulled on one of those threads - it had unraveled the tapestry of my life. -Jean-Luc Picard, Tapestry

    Absolute Lithops Effect is an episode about endings, and how endings are often new beginnings. It is an episode about the steps we take to get to where we are, and how unexpected those paths can be.

    There was a period of time where I was angry. Angry that so many doctors had never ordered a simple hormone panel. Angry that nobody believed me when I said something felt wrong. Angry for the lost friendships, the lost potential, and the lost time.

    I think about where I am, who I am with, the life that I am leading, and I realize that much like Captain Picard at the end of Tapestry, and much like Joseph Fink and Jeffrey Cranor have expressed, I wouldn’t change any of it. Regret is something that I’ve moved past, because it is unproductive, but also because if I changed any of those things, I might not have met Caeli, I might not work at Blizzard, and I might not have my network of friends and loved ones. Ten years seems like a small price to pay for the life I have now.

  • 31 Going On 13

    (Greetings: This blog existed in some form before I transitioned. I’ve decided that I want to maintain that history, but this post has been changed to be less jarring to, well, me mostly)

    This is a follow up to my post last year about the discovery and treatment of my prolactinoma, a benign tumor in my head.

    A UNIX Eunuch

    Until about a month ago, I had essentially been a eunuch. A tumor called a prolactinoma (aka prolactin secreting pituitary macro adenoma) had been growing on my pituitary gland for approximately 10 years. The end result of that is that for the past ~10 years, my testosterone levels were low, eventually reaching a level so low they didn’t bother calculating the actual number anymore, instead listing it as “<20”. Testosterone is responsible for a lot more than you might think, and I go over a lot of that in my first post on this subject. This post is more about exactly what you think testosterone is responsible for.

    New Treatment for a New You (Well, a New Me)

    First, some results. As of January 19th, my prolactin was 17. This is great, because normal for an AMAB (assigned male at birth) person my age (31) is between 5 and 15. My endocrinologist from Johns Hopkins instructed me to continue the cabergoline I’ve been taking at the same dosage, since 17 is close to normal but ~5 is ideal.

    Unfortunately, my testosterone was still in the double digits despite having tried a medication (clomiphene) that can stimulate production - but only if the pituitary isn’t damaged. My endocrinologist prescribed me injections of testosterone (I requested injections instead of patches or gels because you have to be careful around pets, women, babies or basically anything that is alive when on them) to be taken every two weeks. I just had my third injection this afternoon, and I have my first set of labs since starting the injections next week. However, anecdotal evidence suggests that the shots are working.

    As I said earlier, I have spent most of the last decade being essentially a eunuch. I didn’t feel a sense of physical attraction to anyone. If I was attracted to someone, it was always on an emotional/intellectual level. Combine that with the weight problems associated with my condition (or resulting from the other problems the condition causes) and already low self esteem and you have a perfect storm of loneliness brewing. With two exceptions (an online relationship I had as a nerdy teen in high school, and another in the mid 2000s), I have never been in a relationship. I’ve never even been on a date. In high school that was mostly a result of awkwardness and terror, and in college I just never met anyone that I clicked with. Then, part way through college, the tumor started developing. It caused massive shifts in my physical and mental health, and put me on an emotional roller coaster that I am still not fully off of.

    I spent the better part of that decade coming to terms with being alone, especially the 2–3 years immediately before my diagnosis. You start to think about things like retirement and end of life, and what those are going to be like by yourself. They say everyone is alone in the end, but most people aren’t alone the entire way. That was the existence I was trying to prepare myself for, and I have to say I was finally getting comfortable with it. Not excited, but ok.

    Then, a month ago, everything changed.

    31 Going On 13

    A year on dopamine agonists, and he’ll be a sex-crazed creep just like the rest of us.

    -House, “Better Half”, Season 8

    So now I’m 31 years old, overweight (but working on it, and it is going well) and I’ve never been on a date - and I’m getting testosterone injections. Every insecurity I hadn’t concerned myself with in a decade came roaring back, and now I’m no more experienced but with less time. All the treatment did was make me want something that I will never have, because I found out what was wrong too late to matter.

    Or at least those are the things I thought of in the initial panic. Injections are every two weeks, and especially initially there are some serious peaks and valleys. Those will go away with time and with monitoring of my levels. In the time since the initial injection and that initial panic, I’ve begun to realize some of the benefits. My recovery time during Crossfit feels like it has already greatly improved. My mood in the past couple weeks has been far more positive. I have goals in my life that aren’t “make more money so you can buy cooler stuff”, which while fun is unsurprisingly unfulfilling.

    At the start of this process, last May, I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do. I knew the tumor wasn’t supposed to be there, and I wanted to treat it, so that I would get the physical and mental health benefits - but I wasn’t convinced on the sexual aspect. Hormones affects so much of our lives - mood, determination, drive and many many more things - far more than I am comfortable with. I’ve had to wrestle with a lot of things in the past year most people have hammered out pretty well by the time they are 20.

    I’m excited* to see how this turns out.


    *also terrified

  • Benign with Benefits

    (Greetings: This blog existed in some form before I transitioned. I’ve decided that I want to maintain that history, so this post remains.)

    Words Have Meanings

    Words have meanings. Many times people will use a word incorrectly - sometimes so incorrectly the idea they express is the literal opposite of the actual meaning of the word. Other times, though, people use a word correctly, but the common usage and even the definition are insufficient to actually describe the subject. From Wiktionary:

    benign (comparative benigner or more benign, superlative benignest or most benign):

    1. Kind; gentle; mild.
    2. (medicine) Not posing any serious threat to health; not particularly aggressive or recurrent.

    We’re interested in the second definition of ‘benign’. I’ll give them the second part of it - benign tumors aren’t particularly aggressive in growth or in recurrence. On the other hand I have to call bullshit on “not posing any serious threat to health”. I think what they meant there, and what so many people mean is, “unlikely to kill you in the near term”.

    Asking the Right Questions

    After years of going to various doctors, having weight loss surgery, talking to therapists and trying various medications to help me focus, to give me more energy, to make me happy, I was at my wits end. I was at the point where I was just going to say yes to all the medicine they wanted to give me for problems I didn’t I had. My ‘hail mary’ pass was to get as many things as could be easily tested for that kind of fit my symptoms together, find a primary care doctor in my area, write them a 2 page essay introducing myself and describing what was wrong with me, and hope they would run the tests I asked for. Thankfully, the doctor was either convinced or amused enough by the fact I took the time to write an essay about what I felt was wrong with me that he ordered 10 of the 11 blood tests I asked for. He would end up running the 11th the next time he saw me.

    Talkin Bout Balls Deep


    Humor (often inappropriate) is the only way I know how to deal with things, which I think is why I’m able to talk about this as comfortably as I am. This is good, because a lot of people aren’t able to and someone should speak up for them. If more people knew about these things, fewer people would end up like I did. That image is a scan of one section of my blood work results. Free Testosterone for someone my age (30) should be in the neighborhood of 400–600 nanograms per deciliter. Mine was 54.96 - so a bit low, yeah. In addition to explaining why I had lost any physical interest in others, it turns out low testosterone also explains a lot of the ‘physical’ issues I’d been having - low testosterone reduces drive and ambition, it can cause anxiety issues, and having a healthy testosterone level is good for your health in many ways - but because it is related to our naughty bits (sadly NSFW probably), nobody wants to talk about it, and so people are that much more likely to ask their doctor about it.

    So, once I found that out - and I had suspected it going in so I had already become a Wikipedia M.D. on the subject - I asked what the course of action was, expecting my doctor to come back at me with a prescription for some kind of supplement or replacement therapy, but instead he ordered an MRI. I was furious - I finally had an answer, and I wanted to fix it now, dammit. Thankfully the education my doctor received was significantly better than the one I got from Wikipedia, because he knew one underlying cause of Low Testosterone could be a pituitary tumor. When the place they scheduled me for said it’d be two weeks before I could get the MRI, I found a different place that could get me in that Friday and was still covered under my insurance.

    No, Actually, It Is A Tumor

    I went for the MRI that Friday. I found it oddly comfortable actually, and somewhat relaxing since the MRI had a nice rhythm to it and I couldn’t be on my phone or tablet. I think I might have nodded off once or twice for just a moment. After they were done, they had me wait in the reception area while they burned my results to a CD. They wouldn’t tell me what their interpretation of the results was, they said I had to wait until Monday when I saw the endocrinologist. Being the impatient nerd that I am, and having the disc in my hand, I went about extracting all of the images, removing any PII, and posting them on reddit. Thankfully they are better radiologists than they are detectives, and they were able to interpret what I saw.

    MRI ResultsMRI Results

    That huge, off-color thing with the smiley face is what they call a ‘pituitary macroadenoma with right cavernous invasion’. That means it grew from my pituitary gland (the “master gland”) and instead of pushing against my optic chiasm and potentially blinding me or causing a bleed, it grew down into one of my sinuses.

    Hopkins Is Not a Rabbit

    After talking to a local endocrinologist and my doctor, I decided to take the reigns and send all of my case information to Johns Hopkins, an hour by car that I felt was worth traveling to be evaluated by one of the best neurology programs in the world. I emailed them all my case information that Tuesday morning and by Tuesday afternoon I had a appointment with a neurologist, neuroophthalmologist and neuroendocrinologist. Here a neuro, there a neuro, everywhere a neuro neuro. When I got there Thursday they drew blood, and then I went about my appointments talking about potential courses of action if it required surgery, as well as possible medical treatments if it was the right kind of tumor.


    It was getting towards the end of the day and I was meeting with the ophthalmology resident when I got a call from the endocrinologist I had seen earlier in the day. My prolactin level was 4000, and that meant it was a prolactinoma and was “probably” medically treatable (in other words, I take a pill for a while, it kills the tumor!). They would call in a prescription for cabergoline and I would take a 0.5 milligram pill every three days, and it would eventually relieve most of my symptoms, reduce my prolactin level, and someday even kill the tumor off entirely. I was so excited that I might not need surgery I didn’t mind having no idea what prolactin was. Once I got home and the excitement wore off a bit, I started brushing up that Wikipedia M.D. and learning about prolactin.

    Prolactin is a hormone that occurs in both males and females. While it apparently has dozens if not hundreds of functions, the one it is best known for is stimulating the mammary glands to produce milk. During pregnancy a woman’s prolactin level may rise to as much as 400. Mine, you’ll recall, was 4000. Fortunately, unlike some unfortunate men with similar conditions, I did not get leaky, or any symptoms along those lines. In fact, I had virtually no symptoms that couldn’t be explained away by one more common condition or another. Perhaps if I had, someone would have found this years ago. Current estimates have this thing as having been in my head for a 8–10 years, if not longer. Crazy.

    One of the other effects of prolactin is that it suppresses sex hormones - both estrogen and testosterone. So the hope is that, once my prolactin level reaches normal 3–6 months from the start of treatment, my testosterone may begin to recover. That in combination with the reduced prolactin level will make it easier to lose weight, to build muscle. It will cause changes in mood and demeanor - my ambition may come back, my concentration might improve, etc. I will also in some respects experience a kind of second puberty - because hey the first one was so awesome! - and things I had written off as things I would never have might again seem possible.

    Time Flies When You’re Killing Tumor Cells

    I actually first received the news about the tumor at the end of May 2013. I meant to write this article a few days after but I just never made the time. Hopefully the fact I am making the time now is a positive sign for the future. This past Monday was 30 days since I started the cabergoline, and I had blood work done to check my prolactin and testosterone levels again. My prolactin level, which was 3700 at my Doctors, and 4000 when I went to Hopkins, was down to 370 in just 30 days. This is a hugely positive sign. My testosterone level is unchanged, but it is important to remember that 370 is still between 26 and 74 times the normal amount, which means it is still heavily suppressing normal hormone function. I’m eager, though, to see what the next 90% reduction will bring - and I am hopeful that in a month, we might find out.

    If there are lessons to be learned in this story, I’d like to think that they are:

    • Trust your instincts when you know something is wrong. Be relentless, even if it takes years.
    • Be honest with your doctor. Ask uncomfortable questions. If you have to, write it down and hand it to them on a piece of paper. Don’t let timidity get in the way of living your life. Besides, your doctor has seen weirder things than whatever you have going on.
    • Just because something is benign, doesn’t mean it won’t leave it’s mark.

    This started as, and still will be in many ways, a weight loss blog. I hope that my next adventure in weight loss will be much more successful since I will have dealt with much of the underlying hormonal issues that could have been preventing the weight loss I worked so hard for. I’ve developed the good habits, and I know what I need to do - I just need my body to catch up with my mind.

  • Ch-ch-changes

    Its been a while since I posted here, but I’ll be back up to posting regularly soon because I’ll be posting about cooking my own meals. Since I started this blog, everything you’ve seen cooked has been cooked by my parents, because I’ve lived at home in their basement the whole time I’ve blogged here (and since I moved back in Fall 2003 from my failed first attempt at getting a degree).

    I wasn’t really ashamed of living in the basement - I know its a nerd stereotype, but it was a pretty nice basement. The two floods were pretty frustrating, but overall it wasn’t a bad experience. But you can’t actually have a life living in your parents basement. Eventually you have to get out on your own again, and so I am.

    I recently accepted a position as an IT Manager at a defense contractor in Arlington, VA just outside of DC. I’ll be living on the 14th floor of an apartment building in Alexandria, with a big window facing north towards DC. I’ll be living alone for the first time in my life, and it wouldn’t have happened if not for #publichumiliationdiet#tweetyourweight and the people who have read this blog.

    I wouldn’t even have considered this sort of change 143 pounds ago in May when I started to try to lose weight. I probably wouldn’t even have considered it 70 pounds ago when I had my vertical sleeve surgery. I’m not usually a big fan of change but taking this chance just feels right. So I’m going to live on my own, and learn to cook my own meals (I hope!) and learn what its like to live without the huge safety net that is my family.

    I’m terrified, but I’m also incredibly excited.

  • Birthdays

    The past few birthdays have been unhappy ones for me. They just felt like another reminder of how fast my life was ticking away. Fat, lonely and with no ambition, time was my enemy. I was so afraid of moving towards the end of my life, which in retrospect made no sense since I didn’t have much of a life to miss in the first place. My life was a series of things I did between fast food meals, and I didn’t like being reminded of how much time had passed.

    This birthday was different though. My birthday was about two weeks ago - and even though I didn’t really do much to celebrate it, other than dinner with my family, it was the first birthday in a long time that I enjoyed. It felt good knowing that this is the first birthday in a long time that I knew I would weigh less the next one. That I knew my life would be in a better place next birthday than it is this one. The first time that I felt like I was actually making some progress, and not just desperately trying to maintain my miserable status quo.

    Birthdays mean a lot more when your life is not a series of things you do to fill the time between runs to Taco Bell and Wendy’s. I try to think about where I’ll be at next birthday - how much I’ll weigh, where I’ll be living, what I’ll be doing. And for the first time in a long time, I don’t really know. I know what I’d like to be doing, but even if those things haven’t yet come to pass next birthday, I know at the very least, it won’t be exactly the same as the five or six birthdays before it, and that makes me happy.

  • Progress

    People want updates, and so update I shall.

    It is now a little over 3 weeks since my surgery. I’m down 37 pounds since the surgery, and 110 pounds overall sine May 26th, 2010. Things are going great. I’ll be back to work full time next week, or at least that is my plan. My energy levels aren’t too bad anymore. I’ve had to add a notch to my belt to keep my pants from falling down. Twice. Everything is getting better. I’ve been riding my bike again, and I hope to return to the gym October 1st. I have no doubt that this is the best decision I’ve ever made.

    I want to thank everyone who helped - all the doctors I had to see, Val my nutritionist, Dr. Neff my surgeon, and everyone at his office and at the hospital who helped me. I also want to thank my family for being so supportive during all of this.

    I have a lot left to go through though, from actually losing this weight and making sure I stay on the right course and making sure I meet my nutritional needs to eventually getting cosmetic surgery to fix things. But I think I’m past the hardest part now, and everything will finally get a little easier, if not easy.

    I’ll be posting an update video sometime in the next couple weeks. It should be cool if it works out like I want.

  • Surgery Update - 1 week (ish) out.

    Everything is going pretty good!

    I’m actually not really in any pain besides soreness especially when bending down, I’m not even taking the pain meds they gave me. Going to the surgeons office tomorrow for 1 week check up and to hopefully get the JP drain out. We’ll see I guess.

    Food is still Jello + drinks. Isopure is just as horrible today as it was the first day, I’m hoping to move to puree pretty quick but we’ll see what the doc says. Been looking at a lot of blogs about making tasty small and nutritious meals, I need to learn to cook myself and I need to do it right. One that sticks out is The World According to Eggface - so many good recipes, even for the puree phase!

  • The End is the Beginning is the End.

    So tomorrow is my vertical sleeve weight loss surgery. I thought I would be more terrified, but I’m remarkably calm, just sitting here trying to get some stuff done for work over the VPN. Not sure if I’ll be able to sleep tonight or not.

    This is the begining of a whole new life for me if I do what I’m supposed to, and if the surgery goes ok. I hope I can get over my fears and do the things I want to.

    We’ll see. I’ll update when I’m out of surgery, which starts at 8AM.

  • My Worksman Cycle

    This is my Worksman Cycles bike that I use to go for bike rides in our local park. I’ve got to say, though I was nervous when I spent nearly $600 on the bike, I am so pleased with the results. I now ride 1-2 times a week at the park. This weekend I rode for half an hour Saturday, and then 40 minutes today (Sunday) and then half an hour in the pool swimming around to cool down from the 90+ degree heat. I really doubted I would use the bike, but I knew I wanted to, and getting on a bike again is just an amazing experience, and really really good exercise.

  • Visit with Dr. Neff

    Hello everyone. I had an appointment today with my (hopefully) bariatric surgeon, Dr. Neff. He said that I’m doing really well, and that he wants to see me towards the end of August to schedule my surgery (I’m looking to get a vertical sleeve done).

    Much to my surprise, I found out that my nutritionist (Hi Valerie!) had told him about my blog, and that he has read it (Hi Dr. Neff!). I’m really excited about the surgery, and about the success of my weight loss overall so far. This time next year I want to be planning a trip somewhere, instead of staying home all the time like I do now. Its going to be great.

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