Please Talk Me Down

Posted by Sherry , Thursday, July 15, 2010 Thursday, July 15, 2010

Ugh. I need to be talked down off the ledge. I'm starting to head down the crazy-spiral and every day the light of sanity gets dimmer and dimmer.

I've been catching up on blogs and for whatever reason many of my bandster friends have recently mentioned their restriction level in their posts. I'm finding that I'm already at a higher restriction level than many of you (only 4 months post-op) and yet, I feel nothing. I'm at 6.25 cc in a 10cc band. Could I be the one and only lady to top it off?

Saying “I feel nothing” is a big statement when it comes to band restriction so I'd like to offer up some evidence. Last night I ate, in less than 15 minutes, about a cup to a cup and a half of tortellini, a piece of garlic bread and about ¾ cup of shredded chicken with tomato sauce. And guess what? I didn't even feel FULL.

Now, if this was a fluke, ok. But its not. I'm regularly able to eat a cup of protein heavy food and still be ravenous. I mean REALLY HUNGRY. I try to make the right choices but that doesn't seem to be heading off the hunger.

I wake and am immediately able to scarf down a scrambled egg and, if I'm feeling especially hungry, a couple of pieces of turkey bacon.Now, not every day is like this. But most days are.

I'm up a pound from last week (my lowest weight) and it is an unpleasant feeling. Particularly unpleasant seeing that I pretty much lose only 1 pound per week. It is a real "one step forward, two steps back" kind of thing for me.

What's wrong? Why is this not working for me? Why do I still feel like I'm on a diet and not doing well and that I'm about a hair's length from falling off of the wagon and landing in fattyville?

And I need to confess something. About once a week I'm taking an appetite suppressant. I have these leftover phentermines from the last big diet attempt I made and when I start feeling like I've had a few out of control eating days, I pop one of these pills to help control the hunger.For the last month I've probably taken one a week.

I know taking these pills is not physically or mentally healthy but I simply can't help it.

I have a fill scheduled for Friday of next week and I'm terrified its not going to work. I mean, is it possible that I'll top off my band and never have it work?

I'm scared and panicking and need a life-line or two.

23 Response to "Please Talk Me Down"

Kerri Says:

I didn't have any restriction at 5cc and got a fill on Monday of about 1.5 cc. I was frustrated because the doc was hesitant on giving me a fill because I have been losing. But I was losing because I was restricting my food intake...not my band! Well, I now have restriction. My band definitely tells me it is there!!! I think you will get another fill and that may be the magic fill that will give you restriction. I hope it does!!! Best of luck to you!

Janice Says:

I had my first fill last week (5 cc) and for a few days felt okay. But I'm still hungry all of the time and can eat anything without a problem. I will get another fill in August after I come back from a trip. To me it sounds like another little fill might be good for you. :) Keep us posted and hang in there!

Nella Says:

You may need a little tweak to satisfy the hunger. My days vary so much. One minute I can eat a whole piece of pizza and then I am stuck on some fish! Its crazy but we will get there. Throw the pills away...sorry!

DB Says:

I have 4 fills & 10 cc's in my 11 cc band. I can still eat A LOT. I am restricted to a point - but there are things that I shouldn't be able to eat,. I see my surgeon today & hope to get another small fill. Dr.Ceppa explained that I have less fat around my stomach & was on the "smaller" side for surgery & that it why it is taking so much to tighten me up. He said he can overfill if needed. Hange in there - it will all work out. I am so close now & you will get there too Sherry!

Theresa Says:

Everyone is different. Talk to your doctor openly about it and just keep getting fills to you get there. Like Dawn said, you probably have a lot less fat around your stomach. It will happen...we are here for you. We'll talk you down from the Twinkie ledge anyday.
Hang in there!

Perry Joyce Says:

You're just barely over halfway full - you've got a lot of fills left before you can truly panic. And you're only four months out. Technically, you're still in "bandster hell" I think. I wouldn't freak out too much. The band is fickle. I really think there's just some foods it likes and some it doesn't. The trick then, I guess, is to try and eat mostly foods that it doesn't like. I ate an entire Chipotle burrito bowl yesterday with little to no trouble but right now I'm struggling to get down the insides of a Subway ham sandwich packed with veggies. Knowing this, I'm more likely to reach for Subway in the future (when I forget to pack my lunch) since ordering Chipotle again will just get me into more trouble. I guess this is the part that counts as "working with the band". It kinda sucks, but it is what it is I guess.

TracyZ Says:

There is a woman in my support group that has the 10cc Realize band. She didn't have good restriction until 9.5cc. Up until that point (which was about a month ago) she was having the same issues as you. She was able to eat way more than she was supposed to and was never feeling full.

Some advice from our nutritionist during the support groups was to look for foods with very low to no fat content and to eliminate the sauces. She said foods that are high in fat tend to "slip" through more easily than those are that are lower in fat and all sauces will help food slide through. This did help the woman in the support group some but it still took a couple more adjustments before she finally got to the kind of restriction we all had.

Everyone's body is different and you still have a lot of room left in your band. My doc has also said that some people have less fat around their stomach (what he calls a thin walled stomach) which means that you take more saline to get restriction.

Hang in there and be honest with your doctor! He's the one that should really be able to set your mind at ease!

Amy Says:

I had to get to 11 in a 14cc band before I felt restriction. At all. I was sure I was going to be the one it didn't work for well. And then BOOM. It worked. Almost too well. My dear friend, hang in there. It will happen. I gained weight in months 2-4 post-surgery and finally started losing again in month 5. I promise, be faithful about your fills, and the sweet spot will be yours. Big hugs and come off that ledge...I can't promise to catch you!

workinprogress Says:

Yep - you need a fill!!!

Can you call your doctor and see if you can get in earlier?

We are all different - don't worry you will get to your sweet spot!

Take care :-)

TJ Says:

I am at 10ccs in my 11cc band and the last few days I have had very little restriction. The first time I did feel any real restriction was at 9ccs. I typcially have it for a couple weeks and am back to basically no restriction about every 8 pounds.

Living without good restriction can be very hard. The hunger is really annoying, but you might want to start trying new things to help (if you haven't already) since it might take a while - or you might lose it frequently like me.

My biggest coping mechanism is drinking water. If I am starving I drink a full bottle of water before I allow myself to eat. Then after a little while if I am still hungry I eat something. Not only does it help with "fake" hunger I think it fills up your lower stomach making you feel fuller. Another coping tactic that I use is doing 6 small meals instead of trying to just stick to 3 meals. I doc likes this method and since I can eat every 2.5-3 hours it is easier to deal with mentally.

One thing to keep in mind is how much you are eating at one time. You don't want to stretch your pouch so try to stay under the cup rule (plus or minus a little) - even if you are still hungry. In a half an hour if you are still hungry try the water bottle thing. Then if you are still hungry eat the rest of your dinner. That way you aren't going too long being hungry (1 hour), but you aren't stuffing your pouch. I rely on this method a lot when I don't have restriction. I helps me a lot since even though I am eating my full dinner it is split up. I end up eating less in the long run since the other half of dinner becomes a snack instead of eating both my entire meal and a snack.

Hope some of this helps!

Darlin1 Says:

Sherry--I am in the same boat as you are except I have an 11cc band. I was banded 6 days before you and now have 8cc of restriction after my second fill. Sometimes I have a little restriction that slows me down for about 5 minutes ---but then NO PROBLEM. I liked all the feed back you have gotten. Lot's of food for thought! I wish us both good luck!

DON'T JUMP!!!!!!!!!!!


I seem to remember another blogger saying the same as you: that they are are fairly high up in fills and yet not feeling it yet. I think though you still have some room to go: you might need to hit around the 8 or 9 mark before it really makes a difference. Keep at it chicklett - there is light at the end of the tunnel. We just have to keep plugging.

Linda Says:

I'm at 9.75 in my my band (which may be 10 or 11). You'll get there. I sent you an email earlier, but just wanted to pipe in and read the other great advice.

Amanda Kiska Says:

Once you have restriction, it is like a whole new ballgame. Just keep getting your fills and don't be too hard on yourself until you get there. Right now you are doing most of the hard work which is no fun!

Sandy Says:

I think you need that fill. I ate like you did and at my last fill a month ago was given 0.1 cc. A drop-and I can get in less than one cup of food. I am slowly losing (2-4 pounds a month) but it is going down. That sweet spot is there and maybe only a drop away.

Jacquie Says:

It definitely sounds like you need a fill Sherry. I have a much smaller band, 4cc's and I now have 2.8cc's in it. I think you will find that with the fill, you will start to feel restriction. This 3rd fill of mine has definitely put me at or very near the sweet spot. I am still losing slowly, a lb a week lately but I am least its going down.

Cindylew Says:

I don't think you're anywhere near a point where you should panic. I too feel more like you than the "lucky ones" who feel restriction early. I just had my 3rd fill today for a total of approx. 6 cc's in an 11 cc Realize band. I have yet to feel good restriction for more than a few days after my fill.
I'm not making this about me...I'm just telling you that you're not alone and that we'll both eventually find what everyone dreams of...permanency in the "green zone".
This is your life-line powder puff...reach out and grab it.

DG Old Says:

I'm in your same boat.. Getting a fill next Tuesday. Let's hold on to each other and promise not to let us fall off the ledge. I'm 2.5 months post surgery and I've gained weight. I take protein shakes and Vitamin D shots and I still cant lose it. Let's keep positive vibes and thoughts and get our fills. It will work. We wont be the only ones!!

Janelle Says:

Oh boy, you're way far away from where I am and I am still feeling like I need more... I am at 9.3ccs in my 11cc band and feel like I am up SO HIGH and wonder if my doctor will even give me more. When I was where youw ere at, I had NO restriction, so don't worry, you will get there. Even though I feel like I am not where I want to be, I do have SOME restriction, believe me, I feel it! Don't give up, you will get there.

Jen Says:

You've gotten great advice, I just wanted to say: Hang in there, it will get better. You just need a fill. We all think we will be *the one*. You are not alone.

Steph Says:

Sherry, the band is a fickle bitch. I've seen some women post about being filled to almost 9 cc's on a 10 cc band. Some women seem to get restriction at 3.5. Me, I'm somewhere in the 5.5 range and still I wonder if I am still too loose. You will find your sweet spot and remember we are here for you, so vent away. You are doing awesome and although it is a struggle sometimes, know we are all there with you!!

Joey Says:

Amy (babbles) had a similar struggle - but look at her now!! My PA is aggressive. In 4 fills I have 7.5 in a 10cc band. I didn't start to feel restriction until 6cc's. It really helps me if I stick to the solid proteins and don't eat sliders (duh.)

You'll get to restriction. I promise!!! Now, come back inside the building, dear.

Dinnerland Says:

OH, hang in there. This will be OK. I have no idea how many cc's I have in my band, and it is not a matter of comparison anyway.
You will get there.
I see that TracyZ gave you some awesome advice, and I know it is true b/c I work it in the opposite, now being at a fairly restricted level:
I GO for sauces, and I GO for high fat foods. These are easier to eat-- and I eat less of them.
So, following the advice in reverse may help you while you are still in 'bandster hell'-- and that is where you're at. You have a band and you don't feel the effects YET. Hang in there and keep trucking. It will come. Keep going to your surgeon and trust the process.

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