Thursday, March 6, 2014

Made to Crave: A Verse That Calls Me to Action

Hello!!! I've been so busy lately I haven't written anything in over a year!!!! Between grad school and wedding planning my blog (among other things I enjoy) have fallen by the wayside.  As you know, losing weight and being healthy has been something I have constantly had to work on and struggle with.  Through Proverbs 31 Ministries I found an online bible study for women having this same issue called Made to Crave!!!  This week is our week of #ACTION!  Today we're doing a photo hop where we share a verse that calls us to action and gives us encouragement.  One that I CONSTANTLY turn to is Philippians 4:6-7
This verse has given me so much hope and encouragement over the years, and I hope it will do the same for you.  Ready. Set. #ACTION

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Miss Me?

Well, as you can imagine it has been an eventful few months.  I barely have time to breathe anymore, much less blog or do anything remotely related to leisure.  I started grad school in August, as well as a new job, and it was much more overwhelming than I expected.  That, along with wedding planning and finding time to somewhat relax, has taken up every second of my life until about a week ago. 

Grad school is amazing.  I love it.  I have met amazing people, I've made great friends, and I really believe I've found my calling.  AND (drum roll please) I got a 4.0 this semester! That's right, straight A's.  I guess staying off my blog probably helped, haha.  I was unsure at the beginning of the semester.  It was a HUGE adjustment, and I had a really difficult time.  But, I love school counseling, and I am so thankful for the opportunity to be in this program.

My job is pretty sweet, too.  I started working at a child care center at the end of July as a substitute, which quickly changed to a pretty permanent thing.  I was a cook/substitute for a couple of months, and then I moved up to staff-in-charge in October when our director went on maternity leave.  I was so excited to get more responsibility, and I've enjoyed it a lot.  I LOVE the kids.  It's insane.  They're so sweet and hilarious, and there is never a shortage of hugs.  So, things have been going pretty great. 

I finally have some down time now that finals are over and the holidays are fast approaching.  I've been working everyday, but I'll be taking a week off to see my family in Atlanta for Christmas and New Years.  It's strange... with the semester being over I find it difficult to know what to do with myself after work each day.  I've been able to go to New Orleans a couple of weekends, and for the first time in MONTHS my TiVo is finally cleared.  I'm hoping to read a few books (for leisure, finally) before school starts again.  It's nice to just be able to breathe.

Hopefully it won't be 4 months until my next blog post. 

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!

Friday, July 6, 2012

My Reduction Surgery- Weeks 2 & 3 Post-Op

The second week of recovery went really well.  On Wednesday I drove for the first time.  I had to wait an extra week because I drive a stick shift.  I was still sore, but it didn't hurt to drive.  Soreness and swelling went down a lot, but I started to become VERY sensitive.  As the nerves reconnected I was overly sensitive and tender, but it wasn't too bad.  I left the house more and started getting back to my regular routine.  Toward the middle of the second week I was able to take a normal shower without the handheld shower head.  At the beginning of the second week I was also able to start wearing a normal shirt instead of a button-down shirt.  At the end of the week my mom and I went shopping!  I bought some new shirts, a couple of dresses, and a bathing suit!  For the first time in years my bathing suit didn't cost a number that was even close to triple digits! It was so nice to actually enjoy shopping! I didn't have to worry about things looking funny, BUTTON DOWN SHIRTS ACTUALLY CLOSED, and I can wear strapless things! Clothes look so much better.  I was so excited!!  My mom and I also went to a bridal show- which was so much fun! It was nice to get dressed up and go do something!  

The third week went pretty well too.  Unfortunately, I started PMSing.  I usually have breast tenderness and swelling, but this time it was multiplied by like 50.  It felt similar to how I felt the first week, but it went away after a couple of days.  I could've started buying bras, but I was pretty uncomfortable so I decided to wait a while.  I did buy a wireless bra that was really comfortable so I had something to wear under my shirts without my sports bra showing.  It's so nice to not have to wear underwire!!!! I've never worn such a comfortable bra.  I don't want to ever go back!  The stubborn steri strips FINALLY started to come off a little, but not very much.  We went to the sunflower festival- which was beautiful- but I was really sore that day so it dampened my mood because I was pretty uncomfortable.  

Which brings us to present-day! Lol!  On the 3rd I had my last appointment with my surgeon until September/October!  He took the rest of the tape off and put on fresh ones to help smooth the scar.   He said he thinks my new size is great for my body size, and he was very happy with the results- as am I!! After 3 weeks I can take the tape off and, gradually over the next 3-6 months, everything with settle more and continue to look more natural.  They look great now, and he said soon it will be hard to tell I even had surgery!  I am now completely unrestricted!  I can lift, exercise, and sleep without worry!  It's so nice to be able to sleep on my stomach, and I can't wait to start working out again!! I'll be going back to Louisiana this weekend and get ready to face the real world!  I've loved being around family in Atlanta, and I wish I could spend this much time up here more often.  Unfortunately, now I have to get a job and get ready for grad school so I won't have the luxury of a month of free vacation anymore!  

My fiance and I are having one last hoorah before the craziness starts again- so we're taking a road trip to visit my cousin in Savannah for a night then spend 2 days in Charleston!!  I'll also be moving in a month, so the next few weeks are going to be VERY busy.  Hopefully I can find time to blog about our California and Charleston trips in the meantime!! 

Thanks for all the prayers and well wishes during my recovery! I'm so thankful for my friends and family who have made it such an easy process- and, of course, for my AMAZING surgeon, Dr. Joseph Woods!  I could NOT have asked for better! :)

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

My Reduction Surgery: First Week Post-Op

So, it's been more than a week, but I've been enjoying this time I've had to relax and, honestly, didn't feel like typing LOL.
Recovery has been great so far.  It went much better than I expected.  Of course, some days were worse than others- but, overall I was pleasantly surprised.

The first week was probably the worst.  It wasn't terrible, but it was pretty uncomfortable.  The worst part, by far, was the drains! They had to be stripped and emptied 3 times a day, and they were gross- not gonna lie.  Thank God for my mom who took care of them for me, because I don't know if I could have done them myself.  Having them stripped (pulling on the tube to remove clots) didn't necessarily hurt, but I could feel the suction from the drain.  The first time we pulled a little to hard on one and it did hurt and I almost passed out.  But, this was more because it freaked me out and I was already really anxious about it than because of the pain.  I didn't have to take much of the pain medicine.  I took one pill the first few nights so I could sleep better, but I was usually just fine with just taking prescription strength Aleve.
The day after surgery was pretty uncomfortable.  I had the most soreness that day, so it was pretty uncomfortable to move around.  But, getting up and walking around the house periodically actually helped some.  I wasn't allowed to bathe until the drains were removed, and the nurse at the hospital told me I could not wear deodorant yet.  It was really frustrating and uncomfortable, but I took some sponge baths which helped a little.  Over the next few days the swelling and soreness started going down.  On Tuesday I finally got to get the drains removed! The doctor was very happy with the results and gave me permission to finally bathe the following day.  And get this- when I asked if it was okay to wear deodorant he told me I could've BEEN wearing it. really? LOL I could've died.  After he examined me he removed the gauze and, surprisingly, I had virtually NO bruising.  I was extremely impressed!!! Then I laid back and breathed deeply as he removed the drains.  It was a very strange feeling.  It kind of hurt on one side- the side that bothered me when we first pulled too hard- but not for too long.  Needless to say I changed into a clean bra and put on deodorant as SOON as I got home.  It was such a relief! But, the worst part was mostly over.
The next morning when I woke up I noticed I was really swollen and sore again.  It felt really full.  From what I understand it was similar to how it feels when you breast feed.  When my mom came home I FINALLY took a shower and washed my hair.  I have never been so happy to take a shower in my life.  It wasn't easy to wash my hair, but it wasn't really painful- just kind of uncomfortable.  It took a little longer to do most things, and some things I still needed my mom to do for me, but every day it got a little easier.

Even the first week was rough I still think it was the best decision I could have made! I am so happy with the results.  I immediately felt the difference in a relief in back and neck pain, it was easier to stand up straight (which I still have to remind myself to do LOL), and my confidence was much higher! I'm not self conscious about my breast size any more.  I really do not think I could have had a better surgeon!  I wish I could've done this sooner! Another update soon!

Saturday, June 16, 2012

My Reduction Surgery: Pre-op and the Big Day!

First, I'll start with my pre-op appointment that took place on June 4th. It was really simple. They did a little blood work and stuff, but mostly I went to a) pay the balance and b) to meet with the nurse and anesthesiologist to discuss what to expect on the day of surgery.
The next day I met with my surgeon, Dr. Woods, just to touch base since I hadn't talked to him since my consultation in February. He told me what he was going to do (and, again, what to expect) and told me he was very confident that I was going to have really positive results and that it would be life changing for me!
A few days later was the day of surgery!!! Because I was going to have post-operative drains I wasn't going to be able to take a shower or wash my own hair or anything for about 5 days. So, the night before, I washed my hair and put it up, and then I woke up at 4 the next morning to take my last shower for a while using the special soap they requested. My surgery was at 7:30 in the morning, so me, my fiance, and my mom got to the hospital for 5:30. They gave me an IV, and Dr. Woods did the markings, and then I was off to the OR!!! I wasn't really nervous until I told my mom and fiance goodbye and they started wheeling me down the hall. Then the nerve REALLY hit me. Thankfully, the nurses there calmed me down and helped me keep my mind off of everything. The anesthesiologist came in and gave me a sedative (or something) that was going to make me a little sleepy. HA!! I was out in less than a minute LOL. I knocked out before they even gave me the anesthesia. The next thing I knew I woke up in recovery, and I didn't even realize that any time had passed (it had been 4 hours). I woke up pretty easily, of course I was a little groggy at first. I stayed in recovery a little over an hour because they had to wait for an empty outpatient room, but I felt pretty good. I had some slight pain, for which they gave me a pain pill, but mostly I felt fine. My mouth was dry and my throat was scratchy from the breathing tube, and all I could taste was plastic. After a little while in outpatient I got up and went to the bathroom, and then they let me go home!!! It took a little longer than usual to do everything, but they said I was doing great. I couldn't eat much the first day, but I didn't really need the narcotic pain medicine until I went to sleep. I took naproxen sodium most of the day, and I had to take a little medicine for nausea. I wasn't groggy at all from the anesthesia thankfully. At 7:00 we had to empty my drains, and I'm not gonna lie- it was not pleasant. I was really anxious, and it was a little painful the first time so I got pretty lightheaded and nauseous. I laid down for a little while, but then I felt fine. I slept on the recliner in the living room so I could stay elevated (even though Dr. Woods told me I didn't need to) and it helped to keep me from turning in the night. I feel so blessed to have had Will and my mom by my side taking care of me and making sure I had everything I needed. It really made recovery a lot easier :)

Friday, June 15, 2012

A Quick Update

Hello fellow Bloggers!!!!!!
Sorry I've been MIA the past couple of months. Everything has been so crazy I haven't had time to breathe. As you know, I got engaged to the best man in the world! Then two of my friends and I went to Destin for a week for spring break- and it was AMAZING!!! I also graduated on May 18 from LSU with a Bachelor Degree in Child and Family Studies. The day following graduation we had our engagement party, and Will (fiance) and I also went to California for a week! As soon as I got back from California I had to come straight to Atlanta, where I have been since June 3, because I had breast reduction surgery on June 8!!! Along with all of this my Dad and the family have moved back to Louisiana, so I got in some QT with them before I left, too. It's hard to believe how much has happened in such a short amount of time, but it has all been great!! I'll fill you in on my spring break trip, our California trip, and I plan on writing a weekly (maybe a little more often tho, since I have lots of free time now) update on how recovery from surgery is going. Thanks for all of the well wishes I have received!!!

It feels good to be back!

Sunday, March 25, 2012

We're Engaged!!

Isn't it beautiful!? The setting it is in is all fleur de lis!!! It's perfect and I could not be happier!!

Here's how he proposed:
Unfortunately, Will and I only see each other once a week. So, while he was on his way up here Friday night after he got off work, he called me and asked me if I still had the scrapbook I started making for our first anniversary. (Of course I still had it!) Then he mentioned he had something to add to it. When he got here he pulled out the Blockbuster receipt me and my best friend wrote my name and number on when we met. I could not BELIEVE he still had it after 3 and a half years!!!! It was the sweetest thing! Then, we started looking through the scrapbook, and when we got to the poem he wrote me on our first anniversary he read it out loud (You really just can't get sweeter than this). Then, he asked me where I kept the scrapbook, and told him I kept it in a box in my closet with all of our cards and the letters he sent me. He asked me to show him, which I did, and then he said something was missing from the scrapbook. I asked, "what?" and he said, "pictures from the baptism." I asked if we had any pictures together from that, and he said he didn't know. Then he said there was something else missing (what else could be missing? I put everything we have in there! LOL). So, I asked, "what?" again, and he knelt down and said, "moments like this." Then he repeated the last line from the poem he wrote me- "One year isn't enough, let's make it forever." and he told me how much he loved me and asked me to marry him!!!!!! It was so beautiful and, of course, I was in tears before he could even ask!!!

I feel like the luckiest girl in the whole world! We probably won't be getting married for 2 years, because I have to finish grad school first, but I know it will fly by!!! I can't wait until May when all of my family is in town and we can celebrate together!!!

This weekend has been the best of my life so far! I finished English (finally), the Hunger Games movie premiered (which was amazing- go see it!), and, of course, getting engaged was the ICING on the cake!!!!!! We want to thank everyone for the well wishes, love, and support, and we are so excited! Here's to the next step in our wonderful journey together!!