Jon’s quarterly oncology appointment went well a couple of weeks ago. His CEA level was marginally higher than last time – but nothing of note. His scan was clear.

The oncologist remains very sure that Jon’s CEA level would indicate a recurrence since his body previously reacted (stage I CEA level was 69 – normal is 0-3 – currently 1.5). He described instances of stage 3 with a fairly low level, etc., so I guess there’s a lot of variation.

Needless to say, but I’m cautiously relieved we can sort of rely on this.

I had the gallbladder surgery. I’m 6 days out and pretty much fine and have been doing all of my normal things (except exercise). Still eating a low-fat diet per instructions, but I’ve very recently started doing things like using whole milk vs. fat free since it turns out I hate cereal when eaten with (what is essentially) water.

The surgeon described my gallbladder as “bad” to Jon, but I have no idea what that really means. I wanted explanations and PICTURES and comparisons. I have a follow-up appointment next week and plan to get the details.

I felt like total shit the day of the surgery – largely because of the gas they used to blow me up. The pre-op nurse (and my step-mother – an RN) warned me that the gas might be the worst part but I didn’t fully believe it until it occurred. I woke up telling the recovery room nurse that my back was hurting (under my shoulder blades) – and didn’t even notice my stomach until it dissipated (around the next morning).

I took the pain pills they gave me the day of the surgery – and just a couple of times the next day (mostly to sleep) – but I felt much better once I got all of that out of my system. I had never had anything stronger than ibuprofen so I was uncomfortable with continually adding a bunch of chemicals to my (already overloaded) body. The point? The surgery wasn’t so bad.

Jon and I have matching belly scars. I have the same 3 small incisions + a slightly larger one just under my belly button.

The nurse in the room (after I made it out of recovery) specifically asked me if I’m a runner and commented on my (low) BP and heart rate. Before that, she had been talking to Jon about what I should eat and what I should avoid this week and commented that I’ll probably be just fine because I don’t “look like a junk food junkie.” Her general attitude toward me was very positive and almost congratulatory re: my good health/care of my body.

This sort of thing will likely never cease to amaze me.

I was totally out of it on an anesthesia + Demerol + Morphine high, but I remember telling her that I’ve lost 110 pounds and I remember adamantly following up with the fact that I’m NOT a runner, but I EXERCISE. A LOT.

They laughed at me, but seriously: I hate running.

It’s always so weird to me that HEALTH PROFESSIONALS are shocked when I explain (when questioned) that I have never (EVER) used diet pills and that I didn’t have weight loss surgery.

It’s like nobody believes it’s possible to lose weight without that sort of intervention.

The whole encounter didn’t go by without consideration of how differently I might have been treated had I been sitting there at 272+ pounds.

I’d really like to believe that I could be healthy at any size – and that her comments and assumptions about my body + food choices + health were unfair/biased. The thing is? They’re not.

I wasn’t healthy at 272. I WAS a “junk food junkie” who comes from a family where just about everyone over 35 (and some under) are on blood pressure (and cholesterol and blood sugar) pills. I grew up thinking that was normal.

I’ve worked hard to change my course. I know I’m on the right path FOR ME health-wise – NOW.

I get a little scared when it truly hits me how rare it apparently is to have lost so much weight my way + be happily maintaining it.

The surgeon looked all around after he took out my gallbladder. I think I mentioned before that he’s the surgeon we chose for Jon’s Cancer Eradication – so he didn’t even bat an eye when I commented about paranoia re: every little pain.

I left with pictures of my uterus, ovaries, appendix, colon, etc.

I have cysts on both ovaries – something I wasn’t surprised to learn since I found this out via ultrasound a few months ago – but I’m otherwise reportedly in perfect working order.

Want to see? Here.

This stuff is fascinating to me.

My mom bought a fitbit for me while she was in town hanging out following my surgery.

I really have no idea what this thing is going to do for me since I haven’t felt like figuring it out + I haven’t been exercising, but I’m excited now that I feel well – especially since I discovered it syncs with myfitnesspal.

I don’t have any badges or any friends. I guess I can be found via email? (Bottom of this page.)

I’ve already lost 4 pounds since I got it and added my info – which I shouldn’t have done since it’s going to totally skew my loss info.

I was curious about the bloating, so I tracked: went in to surgery weighing 161, weighed 168 2 days later, weigh 164 6 days later.

I’ve been too paranoid to eat anything substantial and largely ate nothing but crackers and sherbet for 4 days – but I’m starting to eat normally again.

Last night:

(roasted asparagus + boiled shrimp + boiled corn)


This morning:





It rained yesterday/last night, but was sort of nice out (meaning not 100 degrees) this morning, so we ate on the porch.


I’m SO looking forward to weather conducive to outside exercise again.