So long, 400!

Wednesday, I stepped on the scales, and for the first time since 2012, I was under 400 lbs. I still think I’m in shock. It doesn’t seem real yet. Regardless, my oldest daughter, Mariah, has been hounding me about taking photos to document my weight loss journey, and I haven’t  done it. I told her I would when I was under 400. Consequently, she took it upon herself to take a picture a couple nights ago. She then posted it side by side with a picture that was taken the day we decided to submit to Highmark for approval.


I am so lucky to have such a great kid. Her support and encouragement has been amazing, and I don’t know what I’d do without her.

Honestly, in the pictures, I don’t see much difference, but feeling how my clothes fit now, I KNOW there’s a difference. My clothes are MUCH MUCH looser; I’ve gotten to the point where some of my shirts are too big to wear. So I broke down and bought myself a few new things in smaller sizes.

That was difficult for me. For one, I’m not a big fan of buying clothes anyway; never have been. I’m sure it’s because fat clothes cost more to buy than “normal” clothes, but also because I always hated how I looked in them. I’m feeling much better about that now. I’m no size 5, but I’m becoming more comfortable. I ordered the new clothes online (I’m still too big to buy most things at a brick and mortar store), and most all of them fit. I bought two pairs of jeans a size smaller than the last jeans I bought (which were so tight, I couldn’t wear them for six months, starting back prior to surgery), a size 4x henley (the purple one from the photo above), and a black and white striped button up shirt in size 4x which I wore to work yesterday. I also bought a size 24 bathing suit which with any luck will fit me once the weather warms up, and another 4x button up that is still a little tight around my upper arms/armpits. I know it won’t take long to get to a point where it fits, so all in all, I feel really good about my purchases. On top of that, everything I bought was on sale. Yay me!

The nausea is still hanging around, unfortunately. It’s not quite as bad as before, but it still lasts several hours a day. I burp, and get hiccups all the time, which is extremely frustrating, but it’s getting a little easier to eat. So that’s something…

Oh, and I’ve been talking to a boy. We’re seeing each other tomorrow, on Valentine’s Day. Cross your fingers for me. 🙂

Til next time –

Linda ❤




A Non-Chipper Post

So, Mariah tells me that I post too many shiny, happy blogs, so here’s one that’s not so shiny and happy.



How I’ve felt since I went off liquids.

Seriously. When is this shit going to stop? I can’t even raise my head off the pillow in the morning without feeling like I’m going to hurl. I’m eating Zofran like candy. (Not really, but I am taking them 3 times a day.) Until about 6 or 7 everyday, I feel like I can’t keep anything down. And when I do eat, most of the time it feels like it’s making the express trip back up. Most times it doesn’t, but occasionally, I get to see dinner a second time.

On top of everything, I got some sort of viral stomach bug that hit me Thursday night, so I spent Thursday night and Friday down for the count. And by down for the count, I mean REALLY sick. At least it seems to have passed. I am still feeling weak, but I felt weak before the flu hit.

I know this is all just temporary, and will pass in time. But for right now, this is really no fun at all.

Rant over. Continue on with your day.


Linda ❤

One more wake up….

Tomorrow is the big day. I feel like I have so much to say, but I don’t even know where to start. This may be a little rambling at times; sorry.

I can’t believe it’s been seven months since I started this blog. Since I started the journey. And now here I am, on the eve of the day that will certainly change my life forever.  I’m overwhelmed with so many emotions right now that it’s hard to get them all out, but I’ll try.

To my girls – I love you. You three are far and away the very best thing I’ve ever done in my life. Thank you so much for everything you’ve done and everything you are. I’m proud of each of you.

To my Mom – Thanks for coming up today. I know you would like to be there tomorrow, but I’d rather you stayed home and took care of yourself. You made enough trips to Erie over the years; I don’t want you to make it again. I love you for wanting to come, though.

To my brother and sister – I love you both, even if I don’t say it so much. I know we’ve had our ups and downs over the years, but I’m glad we’re okay now, and that if anything ever happens to me, I know my girls have someone to look out for them.

To my friends, coworkers, and fellow bloggers – Thank you all so much for unwavering support, encouragement and guidance. Before I started all this, I never knew how many people I had in my corner. I’m truly overwhelmed. I love you guys.

One last thing, and I’ll get to packing my hospital bag. There is one person who isn’t here who I know would be very proud of me. My dad. He worried about my weight for years, and I know he would be so excited that I’m having this surgery. When my Mom came to visit me today, she said that my brother had sent something for me for good luck. It was Dad’s badge, from when he was the Police Chief of Lawrence Township. My dad helped build it from two part time officers to a full time police force, and that’s always been one of the many things Dad did that made me proud of him. Carl, thank you so much.Badge.jpg

So, I guess I will see you all on the flip side.  Here’s to seeing less of me very soon.

Linda ❤

You’ll have to wait one more day…

I had an 800 word blog almost done, fell asleep typing, and lost the whole damned thing, so you’re going to have to wait one more freaking day.

Mental note – save the draft while you’re writing it.

In the meantime, here’s The Avett Brothers. Seeing them live is one of my post op goals (hopefully at Red Rocks-a girl can dream!).

The Avett Brothers – Head Full of Doubt/Road Full of Promise

My daughter Mariah got a tattoo of a lighthouse (for my Dad – I miss you!) with the lyrics from this song “Decide what to be and go be it” incorporated into it.  That line means a great deal to me now. I decided to be healthy, and am taking the steps I need to so I can be.

And with that, I am away.

Be kind, rewind.

Linda ❤

I really need to get better at this blogging stuff…

I know, I know. I haven’t posted in two weeks. Yes, I suck. Here’s an update on what’s going on in my corner of the universe.

  • The path came back from the biopsies they did during my EGD. Everything looks a-okay. I still haven’t filled the Protonix prescription, though. I keep forgetting it’s on my nightstand. The Ibuprofen has started to affect my stomach a little, so I really do need to start taking it.
  • The knee is definitely getting worse. It scares me that I have so long to wait for knee surgery, and it’s already this bad.
  • I haven’t heard anything back from Dr. Ali’s office or Dr. Popescu’s about the EKG thing, so I still don’t know if I need a cardiac clearance. At least I have plenty of time before surgery for them to get things hammered out.
  • I had my weigh in today and lost 4 pounds. Not a huge amount of weight. It probably would have been more except….
  • I’m retaining fluid. A lot of fluid. Pam said she figured I’m probably lugging around an extra five my ankles. They’re looking like tree trunks today. I started taking the HCTZ again, in the hopes it would eliminate some of it, but it’s only the second day. If it hasn’t cleared up at least a little in the next few days, I’m calling my PCP.
  • Work has been terrible. One stressful shitstorm after another. I almost turned in my notice yesterday. It was that bad.
  • On a happier note, my daughter Mariah turned 23 last Friday. Pam told me at our last meeting that I need to get out more, so we took a trip to the casino in Salamanca. Only took a little dough with us, and came home empty handed, but it was still a fun time. We took one of her friends with us, then came back to my house and I gave her the gift of cherry jello shots, which they both seemed to thoroughly enjoy. (I had one.)

That’s about it for now. I’m going to relax with my feet propped up and do some research for my nutritionist in regard to insurance billing. Yes, I deal with insurances all day at work, so of course that’s what I would do on an evening off. It’s just that she is such a nice person, and I want to do what I can to help her get her business off the ground. It’s totally selfish – if she has to close up shop, that means I have to do my monthly weigh ins in either Titusville or Erie. I’ll take Russell over both of them every day.

Enjoy the sunshine, if you’re getting any, and remember to be kind to each other.

Linda ❤

It’s a Beautiful Day in Pennsylvania….

And I’m not being ironic or sarcastic. Victoria, Jordan and I went to visit my Mom and brother.  The girls got to go visit their horses (and unfortunately, Joie got stepped on) and Tori got a chance to ride Olivia. She looked like a natural.


In the meantime, Mom and I had the chance to have a really good visit.  I think she wants to take me to Erie for my EGD on the 19th, which is really sweet. My dad was sick for many, many years and Mom spent more than her fair share of hours sitting in hospitals. I told her she didn’t have to, for that reason, but she insisted that she wants to, which is a huge relief to me. I know I’m not allowed to drive home after (because I will be sedated) and now I don’t have to scramble to figure something out.

My mother has been such a huge supporter of the cause. I’m so fortunate to have her. I was sitting in a lawn chair on her porch, across from her, and told her that a couple of the girls from work (ones I don’t see daily) said they could see that I have lost weight. Mom said that she could see it too, which really made my day. I knew that girls from work could have just been being polite, but Mom sees me less frequently than they do, and if she saw it, I believed it. Love you, Mommy.

All in all, I think the diet is going pretty well. Still no Diet Pepsi or straws or caffeine, and lots and lots of water. I do fall off the food wagon once in a while, but better now while I’m still retraining my brain than later on when it could have dire consequences (after surgery).

Bob update: he’s still calling me a couple of times a day. He also tells me at least once a day that he really wants to see me. He is still having phantom pain, and went to the doctor yesterday. The doctor told he believed he’s been using the prosthetic too much and needed to take a break. He also prescribed the use of a TENS unit, so hopefully those two things will help eliminate some, if not all, of that terrible phantom pain.

Tonight, Tori and her bf have gone to the stock car races, and I’m beat from sitting out in the sun, so I may try to get to sleep a little earlier than usual tonight. I’ve been eating Ibuprofen like candy because of the pain, so I think staying off it might help. At least I hope so.

Take care of each other and be kind to everyone,

Linda ❤

Be Kind. Always. – The most difficult blog to write.

I saw a photo on a friend’s Facebook wall tonight, and it really resonated with me.


I say this, because I’ve been struggling with the idea of posting my starting weight.

Part of me is scared as hell. Mortified. I can’t believe I let myself get to this place. It’s a number that’s painful to see, and I believe that anyone who sees it, and knows me, will likely be shocked. I was when I saw it. But I need to post it. I need to hold myself accountable for my actions. So here goes….


I weighed 486 pounds last Wednesday. The biggest I had ever been in my life. Even when I had babies, I was never as big as I was that day.

I use the past tense because in my heart, I know it’s the past. This is my new beginning.  I’ve been asked if I’ve made any goals, and as of yet, I have not. Except for the 36 pound goal Dr Ali set for me. I am most concerned with getting to a place where my body isn’t sick anymore. It doesn’t hurt to walk. It doesn’t make my head hurt when my blood pressure shoots up. Where I don’t snore like a freight train. (Sorry, Tori.) Where I don’t have to worry about dying before my girls get married or have babies.  Where I don’t have to worry about dying in my sleep, and my kids being embarrassed because they don’t know what to do with their fat, dead Mom. I won’t do that to them, and I won’t do it to myself.

I choose to live. And live I will.

I’m going to wind this up now. I’m tearing up a little bit, and think it’s best to end here. A couple of things before I go.

Cam – You’re an incredible lady. We’re both in it to win it, and win it we shall.

Kelly – I’ve got your back, girlie. If you need me, please get in touch with me. I’m here to help.

Finally, I posted my weight in the hopes that if there is someone else out there that is uncomfortable or embarrassed by their size, that they have company. I was afraid before that when this journey started, that I would be the butt of jokes among some of my coworkers, or “friends” on Facebook. But, as I’ve stated before, I have received so much support, that I’m overwhelmed at times. Truly.

Be kind to each other. Always.

Linda ❤