Saturday, February 6, 2010

Science is fun!

Life after weight-loss surgery is mostly one thing: awesome. But the second runner-up is: confusing. The big deal is vitamins because the surgery removes part of the intestine where micro-nutrients are absorbed. The goal is to take 200% percent of what our bodies need to make up for the malabsorption. Ok, that sounds simple. I'll take two vitamins instead of one, right? Not so fast.

See, certain vitamins block others from being absorbed. Like calcium blocks iron. Other vitamins need help to be absorbed, like iron needs vitamin C. And iron blocks E. And A, D, E and K are fat-soluable so they need to be taken with fat to be absorbed. Calcium works best when taken with magnesium at a 2 to 1 ratio, but you don't want to start with that level of magnesium or you will be spending a lot of time in the bathroom. See? See how not "Oh, I'll just take two Centrum" this is?

But here's the thing-I LOVE IT! I love adding all the grams and micrograms from all the different sources and figuring out the perfect schedule so everyone gets absorbed happily! Let me just say that if I followed the nutritionists advice, that would be the nutritionist who works in the surgeon's office, I'd be screwed because that lady has NO IDEA what she's talking about. Her advice was 3 calcium and 2 Flintstone's chewables a day. But it turns out that the levels in Flintsones aren't adequate and are from sources that are hard to absorb post-op! Thrilling! On with the hunt, you know? So I read research and efficacy data and long-term studies like a med student. (A real one, not the kind always having sex in closets like on TV.) I get an actual adrenaline rush from this.

What's the point of my geeky confession? I don't really know. Maybe I'm just saying it out loud so the part of me that's figuring out what I should do with my life will hear it. I am happiest when I am a student. Research is a sport to me. Is it the subject matter or solving the puzzle or catching my prey? All of it. When I am working and studying, I feel I'm on the right path.

Do you have that? Do you have things that make you feel in the groove, fufilling your destiny kind of feelings?

Wednesday, February 3, 2010


I have been working on such new-agey crap as being in the moment. Observing my reactions without judgement. Gag, I know. But I think it actually helps.

For example, when my daughter got off the phone with her BFFFEF (she lost me after the second F. Suffice it to say she likes this kid.) and said BFFFEF tells my daughter that her BF services will no longer be needed because she just had the BEST PLAY-DATE EVER with her NEW BF, well I calmly observed that I had a strong desire to slug a 45 pound 6-year-old. I am a Zen master.

But, really, rather than getting all bunched up and trying to arrange even BETTER play-dates to win back the friend and generally flailing around helplessly, I took a deep breath and reminded myself that this will happen approximately 750 million times in my kid's life. Especially with the girls. I don't know why. I can't fix it. I can't prevent it.

I hugged my girl and tried to help her give her feelings words. We talked about what makes someone a friend and what it takes to be a good friend. About kindness and forgiveness and people who feel good to be around. I tried my best to be stoic, but my heart hurt for her with her big blueberry eyes all red from crying.

Today I picked her up from school and she had a hand written invitation to a Puppy Party at the friend's house. I asked her if she wanted to go. She said "Of course! I want to bring chicken tenders." Living in the moment...

Tuesday, February 2, 2010


Today I sorta lost it at work and told my boss that I can't stand my job and pleaseohplease is there any possible other thing I could do around here? I could be your personal assistant/gofer/order placer? No? Oh...ok. I'll just be slinking off over here, heh heh.

My Capricorn go-getter-ness in full effect. Today, the coffee shop; tomorrow, the world.

I somehow feel better for having said it. It was a tiny, spazzy step, but a step none the less.

Totally unrelated: my daughter's face has changed overnight. Who is this big girl?!

Monday, February 1, 2010


So, beyond my usual post-holiday, post-birthday feeling of melancholy, I am seriously freaking out. I feel like a cat stuffed in a box. Against its will. I go to bed on Sunday night with a knot in my stomach because I DO NOT want to go to work in the morning. I try to be grateful that I have a job that a) provides rudimentary health insurance and b) is flexible enough that it can work with my kids' school schedules and sicknesses, etc. But OH MY GOD it is like being pecked to death by chickens. My soul is shriveling at the thought of it and a shrivelly soul is just not cute. Ask anyone.

I have just been overwhelmed with this feeling that there is something I am meant to be doing and apparently slingin' joe isn't it. Which, yay, but I don't know what it IS. Maybe I can't know till I quit the job I have. I think part of me is waiting for permission to quit. Part of me wants my husband to say it's ok. Maybe that is the thing I need to do.

Oh. Something just occurred to me. I need to feel used and exhausted and empty because that's how Shawn feels. I feel guilty because he has the bulk of the bills on his shoulders, so if I am miserable and burned out, too, I feel less guilty? I would feel bad to be happy while he's not?That is CRAZY. How is both of us being a mess any good? Wow. I didn't know I felt that way.

I have been reading Martha Beck, Steering by Starlight. In it she talks about how when a caterpillar goes into its chrysalis, it doesn't just sprout wings out of it's body and emerge a butterfly. It almost completely dissolves into goo and that goo reassembles into a new creature. That's how I feel. Changing. It's not gonna be easy or pretty, but I feel in my hopeful heart that it will be worth it.