Whatcha’ Doin Wednesday: Feb 28

February 28, 2012 in Uncategorized

Whatcha Doin’ Wednesday is me giving you a snapshot of a week in my life. From last Wednesday to this Wednesday.

 I had plans to do my first 5K with my brother this month or next.  Then I began noticing a pain behind my knee which would come and go.  I was hoping it would improve over time.  It hasn’t.  I was referred to an orthopedic surgeon and went for my appointment this week at the Orthopedic and Spine Institute here in San Antonio.

When I arrived there, I found myself at a building that says it’s for athletes.

 Right away, I felt ridiculous.  “I don’t belong here“, I kept thinking to myself.  I actually hesitated walking in the door because of it.  “This place is going to be full of real athletes who injured themselves.  That’s not me.  I’m 287 pounds. I’m obese.  I go walking.  Maybe a slight jog for a minute or two before I go back to walking.  But I’m no athlete.  This is embarrassing.”

I’ll admit I can be really adept at the negative self talk.  I knew that I had to see this doctor, though, so I got in the elevator and arrived at my destination.

  Of course when I got up there, I found a room full of people who were of all ages and all sizes.  People end up at an orthopedic surgeon for a number of reasons.  I suppose I was worrying for nothing.  I also noticed that this was probably the nicest waiting room I’ve ever been in! It was beautifully decorated.  The furniture was gorgeous.  I wanted to take pictures of the whole place but I decided most of the patients weren’t interested in being preserved historically for eternity inside my camera!  I still snapped a few….

I had never seen the Ashton Kutcher movie they were playing but I ended up watching the end of it so when I got home I had to add it to my Netflix queue so I can see the beginning. Watching movies in reverse order!

I was ecstatic to get in the doctor’s room and discover a patient table that was not 10 feet off the ground.

 I am not a tall person.  I am about 5’3…or maybe even 5’2….I could almost stake money on the fact that I used to be 5’5 but I might be delusional.  Either I’m shrinking or I went through my whole life thinking I was taller than I am.

The nurse took my blood pressure using something I wish other nurses had used on me when I was 400 plus pounds. I can’t tell you how many times I almost thought I would pass out from the cuff squeezing my arm so tight. What she used was much friendlier!

The surgeon decided it was most likely a meniscus tear.  The MRI I am having this Friday will hopefully determine that for sure. 

I’d like to pause here for a second to make note of the fact that I just said “The MRI I am having this Friday….”  You see, the last time I needed an MRI I got turned away for being too big and was referred to the zoo. 

Yesthe zoo

 Of course, when the doctor walked in the room I immediately felt the need to somehow justify why I was there.  This all stemmed from that sign on the door of the building which had the word “athletes” on it.  So I had to immediately make a comment about how I clearly and obviously am NOT an athlete.  That all you had to do was take one look at me and you could see that. 

I tend to make self deprecating opening remarks when I’m in a situation where I feel somehow uneasy.  And that would be pretty much every situation I’ve been in as a super obese person.  I guess I do it to keep things from being awkward.   It’s a defense mechanism I’ve picked up over the years.  If you’re the first one to make a comment about how big you are then clearly no one else can. Not that they would.  But they’re thinking it.  So instead of letting them sit there and silently think “Wow. She’s big” I bring it up myself.  Bring it all out on the front page first thing.  I figure this is the only level of control I have.  I might as well bring it up myself rather than wait for them to say it.  Or think it.  At least then I’m in control of the comments.  I feel like it eases the tension.  I’m not sure if it does.  For all I know it actually makes THEM feel awkward.  But this is how I learned to cope.  How I functioned as a super obese person.  I guess it’s just a defense mechanism I’ve developed over the years.

I don’t know if others in my situation do this or if it’s just me.

But when the doctor came in the room I went straight into my little routine.  Right away I pointed out that I am not an athlete obviously.  That I’m overweight obviously.  That I’m probably the furthest thing from an athlete that he has seen all day because I weigh 287 pounds and clearly I’m not an athlete…obviously.  Unless you count eating as a sport.  Ba-dum-bum.  (I always like to end with a joke.) 

He mostly ignored what I said.  Then asked me how I hurt my leg.


What kind of walking he wanted to know.

“Well I’ve been walking 4-5 miles a day for exercise. And doing a little bit of jogging.  Jog for 1-2 minutes and then walk.  But I had to stop because I developed this pain.”

“So you weren’t just walking across the room at your house? You were walking for exercise? Jogging a few minutes and then walking?”


“So you were participating in the sport of walking and jogging?”


“Then you’re an athlete”


“An athlete is someone who participates in a sport.  Which you do.  So you’re an athlete.”

“Oh. I didn’t think of it that way.  Well then I’m clearly not a good athlete.  I mean hey…I managed to screw up my leg, right? See what happens when I try to exercise?”

“Well it says in your file that you have lost 130 pounds”


“Then yes.  I see what happens when you exercise”


I think I’m starting to like this doctor.

He thinks I have a Meniscus tear and he even took the time to explain to me what that is as well as answering any questions I had. He even drew a diagram on the paper for me of a meniscus tear to help explain it.  After I left the room, I hobbled back in there to take a picture for you! I’m sure the nurses wondered why I was snapping pictures of the paper on the patient table.  People must have figured out by now I snap pictures of everything!

So my MRI is scheduled for this Friday.  They asked me on the phone if I’m claustrophobic.  Haven’t they ever seen “Inception”?  Thanks for putting that thought in my head!

On to some other adventures of the week….

My oldest daughter and I went shopping and out for lunch.  We went to Saltgrass Steak House here in San Antonio. They had horseshoes in the sidewalk leading up to it.

One of the things I love about having this surgery is that I can now split meals with  my 16 year old daughter.  We eat pretty much the same amount.  I never thought that day would come!  We used to order seperate meals. I would eat all of mine plus whatever she did not eat of hers.  Now we split a meal and still bring home leftovers!  We ordered a steak with 4 bacon wrapped jalapeno cream cheese stuffed shrimp!

First they brought bread and butter.  But you know I was NOT touching that!!

Instead of mashed potatoes, french fries, or any of the other side options that are full of carbs I can’t eat, we opted for the veggies. Lately I have a weird affinity for zucchini. I don’t know how that happened but maybe my surgeon inserted a chip in my brain that actually likes vegetables. I also crave cucumbers these days too!

They put butter on my steak. I’m not sure why but I scraped most of it off.  This is my half of the meal after it was divided. Still a lot for one person, right? But 7 months ago, this would have looked like an appetizer to me.  And to be honest, anyone who suggested we “split” a meal usually never got invited to lunch with me again!! I was all about the food.  And i wasn’t sharing!

I couldn’t eat very much of this.  I don’t really go out to eat anymore for the food.  I know that whatever I order I’ll only end up eating a tiny portion of it and the rest will be going home.  This afternoon, I really had my eye on the shrimp.

There were four. That little tail over there? That’s the one I ate. A whole one! As a result of that, I was pretty much done with my lunch. The shrimp was DELICIOUS. I am pretty much in love with anything that is bacon wrapped and stuffed with cream cheese. It’s low carb and yummy but doesn’t make me have cravings. My daughter didn’t want any so I packed up the other 3 shrimp, steak and veggies to bring home. Dinner for the kids! Wow my money stretches pretty far these days!

After lunch, we went to Ross. This is one of my new favorite things to do. For years and years, I have been totally unable to shop for myself in Ross, Marshalls or TJ Maxx. I could find things for the kids but never for my size. This particular day, their dresses only went up to size 16. I won’t be there for awhile!

When I saw this seat outside of the dressing room I couldn’t believe it! Where was this when I was 400 pounds and needing a place to sit?

I did get lucky that their other sizes went up to a 24. I literally just got to this point so it’s pretty monumental for me. I may be right at the end of the line for available sizes but I’m in!!

I can now find great deals in my size! It pays to lose weight. You save money on food. You can split meals. You save money on clothes because you don’t have to overpay and can find deals. This surgery is going to pay for itself!

Aside from the pain in my knee, it was a good week. Even with the knee injury, I can get around easier and with less pain then I could 130 pounds ago. Even with the setbacks, I still feel like I’m living a dream. Of course at one point in time it seemed like the impossible dream. But the future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.

How about that? A sign at Ross pretty much summed it up!

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{ 13 comments… read them below or add one }

Staci's Slimdown February 28, 2012 at 9:12 pm

OMWord, can I have those 3 shrimp? LOL
I do the SAAMMMME THING with cutting myself down up front so others don't get the chance. 🙁 It all started when I was flat chested in high school and got called Skeeter (short for mosquito bites, of course). It hurt, especially coming from the cute boys. But my mom taught me that people don't like to torture people when it doesn't bother them, so joke about it, too. So I did. And it worked! The teasing stopped. Fine, but I took up that little rule with every area of my life. I make fun of myself all the time… constantly. When I do it, I cringe inside, yet I still do it.
I love your doctor. That is just hilarious, his responses. Love it! You are more of an athlete than I am! I only walk 1 or 2 miles, occasionally 3. My knees dislocate and I have flat feet and super weak ankles. 🙁 Sorry if I've ever said that to you before. Ha. But anyway, you are kicking my butt so keep on walking!
Hope the knee heals up fast for you and you can avoid surgery or anything major!


trisha February 28, 2012 at 9:55 pm

I wasn't able to see most of your pics bc I am at home and on my mobile wifi (SUCKY!!) – but girl I gotta say – you were able to resist the BREAD AND BUTTER at Saltgrass?!!?? OMG you are one STRONG WOMAN!!! lol That stuff is fat girl crack!!

I am glad your doc seems to know what's up – hopefully the MRI will let him see more of what is damaged so ya'll can get a plan of action together!! hang in there sista!!


FreeJulie February 29, 2012 at 12:44 am

Wonderful! I am so glad to have found your blog! For whatever reason, it is a blocked site at my office. 🙁 Seems to work fine from my phone. I'm sorry about your knee, and I'm sorry about your previous MRI experience. The one time I had an MRI as a big girl: such a freaking nightmare, too.

I look forward to getting all caught up with you here! 🙂


Kelliann February 29, 2012 at 5:18 am

I know just what you mean about making remarks about your size before someone else does – the proverbial "elephant in the room"… I still do it, 165 lbs lost (and counting) later.
When I went to get fitted for running shoes I was SO nervous because I felt like I shouldn't be there – that place was for "real" runners. Luckily for me, I was treated with respect.
Isn't that what is comes down to? We are so used to being treated dis-respectfully that we A. assume it will happen all the time, and B. Do it to ourselves…
Sigh… it's a long road we travel. Physically and mentally. You are doing so well – you look so awesome and HAPPY!
THAT SHOULD be what it's all about!


Diane Fit to the Finish February 29, 2012 at 5:23 am

I love that doctor too! You are an athlete – definitely you are. I did the same thing with the depreciating remarks. Sometimes friends would tell me to stop it. I couldn't help myself though – I think it was a form of self-protection.

I hope the MRI shows no tear!! Just a piece of advice from my own experience with exercise. I didn't try to run until I was below 200 pounds. I was, and still am, a speed walker at heart.


Lori February 29, 2012 at 8:20 am

Awesome doctor! and yes, I use self depracation as a defense mechanism as well. I can't get over his comments and how they took you to the truth of the situation and shone the light of truth all over your response. That being said, I will pray about your knee.


Anonymous February 29, 2012 at 10:25 am

I love your blog! Good luck with the MRI, hope it's nothing major. Injuries are so frustrating! And you are most definitely an athlete. 🙂 – Anna (Amanda's sis)


Sheila February 29, 2012 at 7:48 pm

I'm glad you are one step (yep pun intended!) closer to figuring out your knee pain. Am I wrong in thinking that sometimes minuscus (sorry about the spelling) tears can heal on their own without surgery? I hope so! We love Saltgrass, and since my hubby is sleeved also we *sometimes* can share, other times we have our separate entress and sometimes can eat from them 3 separate time! LOVE MY SLEEVE! Keep us posted on the knee, will be sending you health vibes for your MRI.


Andrea February 29, 2012 at 8:15 pm

I didn't realize you are in Texas! I'm in Dallas. Glad you had a good doctors visit. Your doctor sounds awesome! Good luck with the MRI!


Barbara March 1, 2012 at 9:30 am

I love reading your blog posts. I hope your knee heals quickly. Pain is NOT fun. I did 23 minutes on the treadmill this morning…second time I've been on it since I bought it a year ago! This is my latest 're-commitment' to the pre-surgery process that I'm continually trying to wrap my brain around. The dietician suggested that I take daily vitamins and get 30 minutes of exercise daily, among other stuff. Just thinking about it makes me tired!


kristi March 3, 2012 at 11:45 am

I lurve Saltgrass! I live East of Dallas and we go there only about once or twice a year but we are never disappointed.


Debsdailylife March 6, 2012 at 3:41 pm

I LOVE that doctor!! And he is VERY right!!!
Have you gotten your MRI results yet? My husband and my daughter both had meniscal tears. Some can be surgically repaired and others cant. Praying for a speedy recovery for you!!


Gen November 2, 2012 at 4:18 pm

This is the 4th post in a row that I’ve cried for one reason or another….usually the “Awwwwww” factor. When I found your blog (through another…don’t remember), I figured I’d read the “highlights” and go on about my day, but I got hooked. It was not only your story, but your writing. You have a wonderful God-given gift. I haven’t subscribed yet, and don’t usually tend to until I get to “today.”
Gen recently posted..Month of ThankfulnessMy Profile


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