Saturday, December 11, 2010

Need help for lady opening affordable Women's Plus Clothing/Lingerie store

Okay ladies, we need some help here. Anita needs ideas for clothing for her store - colors, prints, styles, sizes, measurements, what you would like to see in a store when you go shopping for every-day clothing, lingerie, and evening wear.
I listed my likes/needs and I'm opening up the comments for you to list yours. Have fun and let Anita know what you want.............

Anita said...

I am opening an affordable Woman’s Plus Size Clothing and Lingerie store
I would like to find out more about the products in Plus Sizes XL to 6X or higher? The plus size clothing in my city only goes as high as 6X for some items but not all and the bras are not wide enough in the band width...
and nothing sexy for the evenings... ;)
I know this might sound strange but can take full measurements so I can know what sizes I should order... especially the for the bras and panties pants and sexy night wear ;)
I really need to know sizes, it's very important... Because I want us ladies to have the perfect fit for once in our clothes and feel good about how we look too... please this would really help me. I will keep an eye on this page for a few days. Just so you know I am serious about my store. Here is my info I know right now... I am 260LBs I kinda fit in 3X-4X jeans 46 - 48. I have a very hard time finding clothes that fit so I really want to do this right... I need actual measurements, so I get clothes custom made... And if you have any suggestions on what you would like to see in styles and colors that would really help me out too...

Thank you so very much for reading my post, I look forward to reading yours too.

Anita - Sorry I haven't gotten back to you sooner. I had to go out of town on Friday and just got home.

Sizing is difficult, since even 2 women who are the same height and weight will wear different sizes. I'm 5' 7" (I've shrunk again) and 376 lbs - I wear a 26/28/30 in pants, depending on who made them and I need a 32" inseam with a 12" rise, panties I wear a size 13 in the Just My Size high cut stretch satin (the only ones I like), bras I wear a 52H (if I can find one in that size that has support). As far as tops go, I can't wear any blouses that are made out of woven fabric and are button-front, the arms are always too tight and the shoulders are too wide, the armholes are weird too. So I usually buy stretchy cotton or polyester knit tops, with scoop necks, v-necks, sweetheart necklines, or round necks and short sleeves (I don't care much for 3/4 sleeves, and long sleeves get in my way). I like my tops longer, so on me, that's a back length of about 32", then they hit at mid-hip.

As for colors - that's also very individual and personal. I happen to like jewel tones - turquoise, purple, burgundy, jade, teal, royal blue, and then black, charcoal grey, olive green, and all the shades of denim blue for pants/slacks (the pants I wear are Roaman's bootcut leggings, the ones with pockets, gotta have pockets in my pants).

I like small floral prints, geometric prints, abstract prints, paisley prints in all of the colors mentioned for tops.

I don't do dresses or skirts, so I can't help you there.

Sleepwear is another story. I'm also not into the sexy stuff. I like the t-shirt knit nightgowns in waltz length, short sleeves or sleeveless (all year 'round), and the nylon gowns made the same way are also nice. Same colors/prints as for the tops are good, I'm not picky about my jammies.

Chenille, terry cloth, or velour robes are nice, and the length can be knee or longer, depending on time of year and weight of fabric. I like solid colors for the robes, again in the jewel tones (turquoise, teal, purple, royal blue, burgundy, red, jade).

My measurements are: bust - 62"
waist - 58"
hips - 62"
inseam - 32"
bra - 52H

Hope this is helpful to you, and if you keep checking back for the next couple of days or so, I'm sure some of my readers will have more ideas for you.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

It pays to be proactive with your health

Ok, I made my ex-doctor (before I fired her) give me a referral to an endocrinologist (one that I picked out), and it's a damned good thing I did. Even though all my thyroid hormone levels are normal, my thyroid is enlarged enough that, with the family history of thyroid cancer, the endo thinks it's a good idea to have my thyroid removed.
Dr A and I had a long talk about my weight, and she really understands, a lot better than Dr W ever did. Dr A agrees with Dr W that calories in/out works, but only for some people. Dr A said that genetics can interfere with that, and if there are a lot of fat people in your family, you can end up being fat and there isn't much you can do about it other than eat healthfully and exercise, which isn't going to make you lose weight, but will help you stay healthy. When I told her that all the women in our family, both sides, start out average-sized, then get fat when they have kids and get fatter as they age, but live to their mid/late-80s, she said that I shouldn't worry so much about my weight, but worry more about whether my other numbers are good and if my heart and lungs are functioning the way they should. Which was rather refreshing to hear, ya know? And that was the first doctor's office I've ever been to that actually had gowns that fit me and chairs that didn't dig into my hips/thighs when I sat in them. It was a totally awesome experience.
There isn't any way to shrink my thyroid and it will only keep getting bigger, which can cause a lot of problems farther down the road. She scheduled me for another thyroid ultrasound, which I had done yesterday. They called with the results today, and if it weren't for the fact that I have a consultation with a surgeon next week about removing my thyroid, they would want to do a biopsy of the mass they found at the back of my thyroid. It's not a nodule, they aren't sure what it is, but since the thyroid is coming out, no biopsy is necessary. Thank you Dr W for blowing off my concerns about my thyroid.....NOT. And thank you, Dr A, for taking me seriously and checking things out further.
I also saw Dr J today, he's my orthopedic doc that takes care of my arthritis. He couldn't believe that Dr W wouldn't prescribe anything stronger than relafen for my knee. So he gave me a prescription for Celebrex to see how that works for me. He did say that I'm looking at having my knee replaced some time in the near future. He told me that it would be 3 days in the hospital, then maybe a week in a nursing home. I told him I thought I could probably come home from the hospital, after all, we have a handicapped toilet and shower, I have a walker already, and I can sleep in my recliner until I can do the stairs to the bedroom in the basement. And there are no other stairs in the house that I would have to do right away, and no steps into the house. Best of all, my weight isn't even a concern for him as far as doing the surgery (is he an awesome doctor or what).
I also have an appointment next week with the gynecologist to check out the bleeding. Now that's been going on for 2 1/2 years, and started back when I was taking Cymbalta and relafen (and vaginal bleeding is a side effect of those two drugs interacting with each other). Even though I quit taking the Cymbalta 4 months ago, the bleeding didn't stop (it's been an on-and-off thing all this time and Dr W has never followed up on it since I first mentioned it to her, other than having me see the gynecologist 2 1/2 years ago for an endometrial biopsy, which came back negative). So, even though that biopsy was negative, and bleeding is a side effect of the 2 drugs I was taking, she's just sure I have endometrial cancer and need another biopsy done. Yeah, having one of those done is just so easy with a stenotic cervix (it hurts, let me tell you). But I'm having it done, just in case something has changed. And if the gyno recommends a hysterectomy, I'm demanding that it all come out, ovaries too, since ovarian cancer killed my mother and several other relatives on her side of the family. I'm not going to piss around with it, if he wants to take out part of it, it all comes out. I'm done taking advice that I don't think is good for me.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Letter to my ex-doctor

I've had time to think since I walked out on my doctor on the 10th, and I composed a letter to her today. I'll be sending it to her on Friday. I don't expect a response from her, but I want her to know why I won't be coming back to see her anymore. The letter follows:

Re: Office visit Nov 10, 2010

Dr W,

I've had some time to think since I saw you on November 10th, and there are some things I think you need to hear. Since you don't seem to listen to me when I'm talking to you in person, maybe you'll listen to what I have to say when I'm putting it down in black and white and you can't interrupt me with your preconceived lipophobic ideas.

First of all, I have been fat for over 30 years of my life, and every doctor I've ever seen has told me that, like I'm stupid and can't tell that I'm fat.

Second – I've dieted and lost weight, that's not the hard part. The hard part is maintaining that weight loss, and that's where medical science, doctors, diets, drugs, and surgery have failed me (note: I'm not the one who failed here, I tried, it was the methods used that failed, not I that failed). In the end, all those methods of weight loss did nothing for me but make me fatter and worsen my health and well-being in the long run.

Third – You tell me that it's just a matter of eating less and moving more. Fine. I want to know how I'm supposed to exercise when I'm in excruciating pain after standing for less than 5 minutes or walking for less than 1 minute when you refuse to prescribe anything for pain that's stronger than relafen (which doesn't even begin to touch the pain I have).

Fourth – You say I probably have fibromyalgia, but you aren't willing to do anything to try and treat it. I asked for a referral to a rheumatologist, and you told me there was a 6-month wait, and I got no referral and I'm still in pain. You haven't suggested a pain clinic or anything but weight loss.

Fifth – You said you would send me to an in-patient weight loss clinic. You act like I don't have a life, that I can just up and leave my husband, my house, and my pets for a couple of months. My husband has type 2 diabetes and I'm the one who plans the meals and the grocery list to control his diabetes. I give him his insulin shots and I'm the one who knows how much he needs of each insulin. I also do the budget and pay all the bills for the household – my husband doesn't have a clue how to do any of that. I balance the checkbook online. If I'm gone for a month or more, there is no one to do any of that for him, but you seem to think that's fine, as long as I lose weight. No thank you, I'm not up for another failed diet attempt, been there done that too many times.

Sixth – Did you even realize the congnitive dissonance in your statement that you know that weight loss surgery doesn't work for everyone but you think that putting me on another diet will work? What part of “I had a VBG, lost weight, and gained back more than I lost”, which is definitely a plan with calorie deficit in mind, do you not understand? Why do you think that another diet will work when weight loss surgery didn't? Do you just keep pushing “calories in/out, eat less/move more” because you don't have any other ideas? Look up the study that Stunkard and McLaren-Hume did back in 1959 about the efficacy of weight loss diets. Look up the studies done by Kramer, et al, Stalonas, et al, and Graham, et al. Every one of those studies shows that diets don't work for at least 95% of people in the long term. The Stunkard study has been around for more than 50 years, probably longer than you've been alive, and you're still recommending something that doesn't work, along with most of the other doctors out there. Talk about insanity. If you don't have a solution that works better than a diet, then I suggest you don't push diets and focus more on what can be done to improve your patients' health. Are they eating a wide variety of foods, do they move their bodies in ways that they enjoy, are their numbers good? If the answers to all those questions are yes, then they don't need to lose weight, and you need to look for the real cause of whatever problem they're presenting to you instead of blaming it on their fat.

The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result every time. Sorry, I've stopped the insanity of dieting. Every time I've dieted, no matter what method I've used, it's failed. Why should I keep trying the same thing over and over again, when I have more than enough experience to know that, in the long run, it won't work? Have you ever had to diet to lose weight? And I'm not talking 5 or 10 pounds here, I'm talking 50 pounds or more. If you haven't had to lose that much weight and try to keep it off forever, you don't know what you're talking about when you say it's calories in/calories out, eat less/exercise more. I don't care that you're a doctor and went to medical school, you haven't lived it so you don't know what it's like to be called a liar and told that your experiences don't matter or aren't real.

When this is what one hears from doctors one's entire life, is it any wonder that one gets fed up and says “No more, I've had enough!” and walks out? This is why I hadn't been to a doctor for so many years when I first came to see you, and it's why I won't be back to see you again. I'm tired of being discounted and told that if I would just lose weight, all my problems would magically disappear.
Been there done that, and guess what? I was still in pain.



ETA: I added some information about studies to item 6 in the letter, and changed it from probably won't be back to see her to won't be back to see her before I printed and sent the letter to my ex-doctor.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

My doctor sucks and is no longer my doctor

Well, I made an appointment to see Dr W today and ended up walking out before it was over. I went to see her because I've been having vaginal bleeding, off and on, for the last 2 1/2 years. I saw the clinic's gynecologist 2 1/2 years ago when the bleeding first started, after the dildo cam couldn't find anything. The gynecologist didn't find anything either when he did the endometrial biopsy.
I've been taking Relafen for arthritis pain, and Cymbalta for depression/fibromyalgia for almost 3 years, and last week I googled drug interactions for those 2 particular drugs. Guess what one of the side effects is? Vaginal bleeding. Now, I quit taking the Cymbalta about 4 months ago because of the side effects it has on one's sex drive (and most antidepressants will kill your sex drive, so you get to choose between being depressed and having sex, or not being depressed and not feeling like having sex - some choice). But the vaginal bleeding, off and on, didn't stop. So I googled Relafen and side effects from it, and vaginal bleeding is one of them (granted, it's not a common side effect, but it does happen).
So I go in and tell my doctor all this, and what does she say? "I don't think the relafen is causing the bleeding, I think you need to see the gynecologist for another endometrial biopsy to rule out endometrial cancer." I ask her about the fact that the gyno said my cervix was stenotic, and she said that's not a factor, that I could still be bleeding from my uterus (all this without doing an exam). I told her that I had stopped taking the relafen, and hadn't been taking any NSAIDs that acted as blood thinners because of the bleeding, and would she prescribe something else for the arthritis pain. That I was tired of being in pain all the time and the relafen just wasn't working all that well. She said she wouldn't prescribe narcotics - I wasn't fucking asking for narcotics, I was asking for something that worked better than relafen or ibuprofen and she wouldn't even consider anything else. She said maybe it was time to see the orthopaedist again and see what he had to say about my knee if the cortisone shots and Syn-Visc shots weren't working, maybe he needs to scope my knee. WTFE, I'll make an appointment with him and see what he'll prescribe for the pain, he may be more reasonable than she is (he usually is pretty good, and doesn't seem to be fat-phobic).
So I asked her about the fibromyalgia pain too. I told her my body felt like one big bruise and that it hurt for the cat to walk across my legs, and that shouldn't hurt (granted, Marty is a 15 lb cat, but still). That I was tired of being in pain all the time. By this time, I was in tears, because she was basically ignoring anything I had to say, like I didn't know my own body, and didn't know what I was talking about. She said that I could get mad at her, but my weight was causing a lot of my pain and if I would just lose weight, the pain would go away. I asked her what more I was supposed to do - diets hadn't worked, phen-fen hadn't worked, and the WLS hadn't worked. I want to know since when has it been that being fat caused fibromyalgia and arthritis? If being fat causes those diseases, then why do thin people get them?
She said she'd send me to an in-patient program to lose weight, and I lost it. I said "I've had it, I'm done with this." I got up and walked out and I'm not going back to see her ever again. I'm done being blown off and treated like a child who doesn't know shit from shinola. She doesn't seem to give a shit that I'm in pain all the damned time, all she sees is a fat woman who refuses to diet and get thin to suit her idea of "healthy" (BTW, my blood pressure was 124/67 this morning and my weight was the same as it has been for the last 3 years). So fuck her and the horse she rode in on and the fleas that rode in on it. I'm looking for a new doctor and she can take her "healthist" attitude and shove it up her ass.

ETA: For the privilege of being treated like a child and having my concerns blown off, and being told that if I'd just lose weight my pain would go away, my insurance is being charged $135.00 (and we wonder why health care is so expensive.....)

Sunday, October 17, 2010

That's it, I'm fucking done with this shit.

Edited to add: If anyone on the Illinois side of the family is reading this, don't take it out on my son. He has nothing to do with this, my opinions are not his opinions, and he has no say over what I publish on my blog. And really, family, get over yourselves already. You've got your knickers all in a knot over what I post on my blog because you think everyone in Pana is reading my blog and they'll know all the family dirty laundry. Do you really think our family is all that interesting? Only if you're in love with soap operas. As for all the shit that went down when I was a kid, I'm sorry, but it was known among the people who knew Mom how she treated me. How do I know this? When I was an adult, I don't know how many people came up to me and told me it was a shame that my mother abused me (these were people who babysat us kids, were neighbors, etc). So anything I've posted on here about Mom is old news. Get over it already.

I tried to call my aunt today because I was told she was mad at me, about the shit that went down with my niece. Well, she only has my niece's side of the story and I wanted to tell her my side of the story.
I hadn't said anything to her about any of this bullshit because she was in the hospital recuperating from the accident and I figured she didn't need to deal with family drama on top of everything else. But no, my niece had to stir a turd and go tell my aunt her side of the story and make me out to be the big bad bitch, saying I told everyone in the town where they live all the family dirty laundry. Supposedly all of this was posted on Facebook (my niece unfriended me, BTW).
My niece was the first one to post anything on Facebook, in a passive aggressive way, about me duping her (because I'm not devastated by my mother's death). All I said on Facebook was that she was talking about me, that she didn't really want to go there on Facebook, and if she did, I would air the dirty laundry there. That if she wanted to cut me out of her life, to go ahead and do it, that I had lived without her in my life for 17 years, I could live without her in my life for the rest of my life. That anyone who knew my mother (her precious grandmother) knew how she was and wouldn't be surprised by anything I had to say. Or words to that effect. But I did not air any dirty laundry on Facebook at that time.
So I called my aunt today to talk to her about all this shit. All I got to hear from her was how disappointed she was in me, that they had to live in that town. When I told her Traci started the shit on Facebook, she hung up on me. This is the aunt that stuck up for me against my mother, says she loves me, but won't listen to my side of the story. I guess I'm supposed to forget 40 years of abuse like it never happened, let my niece take over abusing me where my mother left off, and not say a word about it. Well fuck that shit. I worked too goddamned hard to get away from that kind of abuse and find my self-esteem and I'll be damned if I'm going back to it.
I cut my mother out of my life because of her abuse of me, and NONE of my family gave enough of a shit about me to call me or look for me or write to me, not even my aunt, when I left Illinois 17 years ago. If I want contact with my aunt, I have to call her, even though she's had my phone number for years (every time my phone number changes, I call her with the new number). In 17 years, I can count on the fingers of ONE fucking hand, with fingers left over, how many times she's called me. As for the rest of the family, they've never called me (well, Traci called to tell me Mom had died, BFD). They called a couple of times to let me know how Dad was doing after the accident, now I hear nothing from them about how he's doing because they're all pissed off at me over what I said to Traci (my niece). I'm sorry, if the truth about my mother hurts, TOUGH SHIT, BITCHES! I had to live through that shit for 40 fucking years, none of them have the right to tell me I can't talk about it on my blog or anywhere else, for that matter; none of them lived through it, none of them know what it was like. It just happens to be common knowledge in that town that my mother was a bitch and abused me when I was a kid - if they want to hide their heads in the sand about it and think it's forgotten, well, sorry, everybody else might have forgotten it, but it's something I'll never forget and I don't think it's something I'll ever get over, no matter how hard I try (and believe me, if 10 years of therapy couldn't do it, I don't think anything can).
So you know what, family? You can all SHUT THE FUCK UP! You don't really give a shit about me, you never have and you aren't going to convince me otherwise. The only person in the family in Illinois that I care about now is my dad, the rest of you can do whatever you want. I have my family up here and they're all I need now. I thought I needed you guys in my life, but I don't need more abuse and more bullshit. If you can't face facts, and want to think everything has always been fine and dandy, then go for it. But I know what the truth is, I've faced it, and I'm trying to deal with it, and most of the time, I deal with it just fine - until I run into people who deny the reality of my existence. Well, get over it. It was real, it happened, and I'm going to continue to talk about it.
You think these things need to be hidden and kept quiet so that no one knows, because it shames you. You should be ashamed, you let it happen and didn't do a damned thing to stop it. For years I thought I deserved the abuse, that there was something wrong with me, that I wasn't good enough, smart enough, pretty enough, thin enough, whatever enough. That if I could just change, the abuse would stop. Yeah, right. It wasn't something wrong with me, it was something wrong with the person who was abusing me.
The more people speak out about abuse, the more people who are being abused will know that it's not something they deserve to have happen to them. Then maybe people who are being abused will find the strength somewhere to leave their abusers, get help, and find a way to make a joyful life for themselves. You seem to think I'm blogging about this to make your lives hell, but really, I think about your lives just about as much as you think about mine - in other words - not at all.
And you know, it just hit me, I think y'all just might be a bit jealous. I left Illinois 17 years ago and made a life for myself and basically told Mom to fuck off. You all stayed there and kept kissing her ass so she wouldn't treat you the way she treated me. That's really a sorry way to have to live your life. And when she was dying, and you knew she was dying, you kept right on kissing her ass. You all kept asking her if you should call me and let me know that she was dying and she said "What for?" Even though you all thought I should be there, or at least be told, NONE of you had the balls to go against her and call me until she was dead. WTF could she have done to you if you had called me against her wishes? You didn't have to tell her you had called. Did you really think I would have come down there? And if I came down there, did you really think I would have made a scene? Come on, you can give me more credit than that. I might be a bitch, but I'm not that big a bitch. If I had come down there and she had said she didn't want to see me, or had said anything nasty to me, I would have said "Sorry you feel that way" and walked out. I tried twice to make up with her, and she wasn't having any part of it, so why would this time have been any different? And why would I have made things hard on Dad? Making a scene with her would have made things hard on him and I have no reason to do that to him. Which is why I was civil to everyone at the memorial service. Yeah, it would have looked real good if I had gone around singing "Ding dong, the witch is dead" wouldn't it? You all said it was so great to have me back in the family, but you want me back in the family on your terms, which means I have to toe the line just like I did when Mom was alive. Sorry, I quit toeing that line 17 years ago, and I'm not going to start toeing it again just to be part of a family that never really wanted me in the first place.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

All I ever wanted.....

Ya know, all I ever wanted was to fit in. To be accepted and loved for who I was, to be viewed as a worthwhile person, in spite of my flaws. And I do have flaws, boy, do I have flaws. I wish I didn't, but some of those flaws are not my fault, they're the result of things that were done to me as a child, and later on as a teenager and an adult. It's water under the bridge and can't be changed. I don't know if I'll ever be able to completely let go of the anger and pain - it seems that every time I have, something happens to bring it all back again (and maybe I hadn't let it go, maybe I'd just buried it).
But, I've never felt like I've fit in anywhere, and I've always felt like the odd man out in any setting I've ever been in. There's a saying that family has to take you in when no one else will. That's true, in a way. It may not be the family you're born into, it may be the family you've built for yourself through friendships and marriage (and sometimes, that family is closer than the family you were born into).
I'm going to consider myself lucky that I have my dad back in my life, I've had my aunt in my life for quite a few years now, and I'm getting to know my cousin again. I think they accept me for who I am and love me anyway (at least I hope they do, I know I love them, a lot). And I'm certainly lucky to have my husband. He loves me just the way I am and accepts me, flaws and all, and I love him, flaws and all. I have my son in my life and I love him and his wife, too. I have grandkids in my life and I love them and they love me. So I guess I've finally found that place where I fit in and am loved and accepted by the ones who really matter to me. It's not completely the family I was born into, it's partly my birth family and partly the family I've made for myself, but it's mine and it's where I fit, finally.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Taking charge of my health - in spite of my doctor

Got home from vacation last week - went to see my dad in Illinois and caught up on family news. Also found out more about our family health history, and what I learned didn't make me happy with my doctor.
Now, Dr W knows that my paternal grandfather had thyroid cancer and my mother had hypothyroid problems. She knows my thyroid is enlarged and I have several nodules. What tests has she ordered to check my thyroid function? TSH and that's it - she thinks that's the only one that's necessary, even with the family history she has and the results of the thyroid ultrasound scan. I've been trying to get Dr W to do further testing of my thyroid, but she says it's not needed right now, my TSH levels aren't high enough (at 3.5, I think she said). So I decided, fuck her, I'm going to find an endocrinologist and get this checked out on my own. Well, guess what - can't do that. Have to have a referral from Dr W. So I called and set up the appointment with her for next week to tell her I want a referral to this certain endocrinologist (who is taking new patients and takes TriCare and Medicare, thank Maude, I love my Google-fu). She's going to have order a pre-T3, pre-T4, and another TSH. Then she's going to have to fax the results of those, my demographics, any progress notes, and my thyroid scan to the endo. I have a feeling Dr W is not going to be happy about that, but I don't really give a rat's ass. It's my health she's pissing around with, and I don't want to end up like my grandfather - 85 years old, with thyroid cancer so advanced that it can't all be removed because if they took it all, he wouldn't be able to talk or swallow. He was told afterward that even with chemo, he only had 3 - 5 months to live (he fooled them, he stuck around for another 5 years).
So, I also found out that my maternal grandmother had to have B-12 injections, as did one of her sons and my mother (yeah, that's good news for me, what with having had WLS....NOT). Lovely news, that. Luckily for me, I've been taking sublingual B-12 for the last 6 months or so, hoping it would help with fibromyalgia symptoms, so hopefully that will help.
Then, I was reading on the Yahoo support group for WLS survivors that some of us are ending up with MS after 10 to 15 years or so. Just what I needed to hear, especially since my neurologist had brought that possibility up last year when I had the MRI done for my migraines - she found a couple of lesions that could mean MS and wanted to do another MRI in a year to see if there was any progression. Well, it's been more than a year, I think (I've slept at least a couple of times since then, and my memory just isn't the greatest when it comes to what happened when anymore). Since I have to see her next month after I have the EMG to see why the carpal tunnel surgery didn't solve the problem of the numbness in my right hand, I'll ask her about it then.
I keep telling myself that I don't have it as bad as other survivors of WLS, that I don't have as many of the debilitating complications as they have - but I tell you what, if I had had any idea of how fucked up our family medical history is and what the real complications of WLS are (the ones that they don't tell you about when they're getting you to sign on the dotted line for having the damned surgery), I would have told my nurse practitioner to stick it in her ass. That I'd stay fat and suffer with fucked up knees and fight to get them replaced when necessary instead of having to deal with all the shit I'm having to deal with now.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Roaman's latest catalog has 2 pages of FAIL!

I got Roaman's latest catalog in the mail today, the one that expires 10/1/10. There is a section in it for plus+ size living presented by Brylane Home. Now that's all well and good. There's a lot of good stuff in there - chairs that will support up to 500 lbs, wider hangers for clothing, fanny packs that fit up 72" waists - you get the idea. I don't have a problem with any of that. It's a good idea, and I can deal with that and might even order some of the stuff one of these days, if I have a need for any of it. What chaps my ass though, are the two pages devoted to kitchen items from Biggest Loser (yeah, the TV program that hates fat people and wants to do away with us). WTF is up with that, Roaman's! I mean, really. You're marketing plus-size clothing to fat women and you have the unmitigated gall to throw in diet apparatus from Biggest Loser in your clothing catalog? Ya know, as much as I like your denim boot cut leggings, I can get them at Woman Within, in the same colors and same sizes, for the same fucking price, and not have to deal with looking at shit merchandise from Biggest Loser, a show that hates fat people and wants to make us disappear, and treats us like shit.
I'm seriously considering not buying from you anymore.

ETA: I went to Roaman's website and found their Contact Us form. I contacted them all right. Below is a copy of what I had to say to them on their contact form:

I received a catalog from you, expiration date of 10/1/10, with a section of plus size living presented by Brylane Home. I don't have a problem with that. The problem I have is with the 2 pages of products that are The Biggest Loser (TM) branded items.
I don't watch that show because of the way they treat fat people - the disrespect, the unsafe dietary practices, and the over-exercising that they recommend for weight loss, all of which are unsustainable in the long run and can do damage to one's body, not to mention to one's mental and emotional health. This is a program that hates fat people, wants us to disappear, and you're putting their products in your catalog of clothing for fat women (and yes, I identify as a fat woman, I'm not "plus size" or any other euphemism, I'm fat, it's a descriptive word, not a pejorative word). That is so many kinds of wrong, I can't even begin to list them all.
I buy all of my boot cut leggings from you because I like the quality, the fit, and the price. But, since you are going to have The Biggest Loser (TM) merchandise in your catalog, I'll have to find those leggings elsewhere. I refuse to patronize a retailer who has so little regard for its target demographic.

I'll update this if I hear anything back from Roaman's.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Fat & Happy = Enjoy Being Fat?

I'm having a discussion, so to speak, with a person on Facebook about WLS. She thinks getting a lap-band is safe as long you've done all the research and follow all the surgeon's directions for "lifestyle" changes.
Personally, I don't think any WLS is safe, no matter how much research you've done, no matter how well you follow the surgeon's directions for lifestyle changes. I said that until they come up with a way to make fat people thin that has no negative side effects and doesn't kill people, I would stay fat, healthy, and happy and continue to live my life in spite of everyone who tells me that I can't do that until I get thin.
Then she comes back and says that knives kill - am I going to stop using knives? I told her: Analogy FAIL! Knives also have other fundamental uses that don't kill when used properly. WLS surgery, even when used "properly" still kills people, and doesn't work as it's intended to work - make fat people thin. Bottom line - if you're willing to risk death on maybe getting thin, then I'm not going to tell you that you can't do it (your body/your choice), but like I said, don't come crying to me when the surgery fails you and the surgeon blames you for the failure (and believe me, it will happen, it has happened too many times in the past and will continue to happen too many times in the future as long as people keep buying into the fantasy that they can't have a life until they get thin). You can talk until you're blue in the face and you'll never convince me that WLS of any kind is a good idea - been there done that, got the t-shirt/hat/keychain/poster, thank you very much.
Then she says: Okay. You'll stay fat. That's fine. Some people don't enjoy being fat. Besides, a lot of surgeries kill people. I'm sure WLS doesn't kill anymore people than the average surgery does.
My response:"How many other surgeries have a 2% mortality rate within the first month after surgery? How many other surgeries have a 20% mortality rate 5 - 10 years after surgery? None that I know of that are elective (and WLS is elective, it's not a surgery that's immediately necessary to save a life) and done on otherwise healthy people (and in spite of what has been said, most people who have WLS are, for the most part, healthy, they're just fat and their doctors refuse to look beyond the fat for any other cause of any problems those fat people may be having)."
I never said I enjoy being fat - I said that until there's a way to make fat people thin that has no bad side effects and doesn't kill fat people, I'll stay fat, healthy, and happy (what, I should be miserable until I can get thin? Yeah, right, ain't happening). I'll continue to live my life in spite of everyone who tells me I should give up and hide until I meet some arbitrary ideal aesthetic. Nope, I'm going to keep on being fat at the world and if the world doesn't like it, tough cookies. If more fat people had my attitude, there would be a lot less overt fat bigotry in the world because the bigots would be afraid to open their mouths.
Now, maybe being fat, healthy, happy, and living my life being fat at the world might mean to some that I do enjoy being fat. Maybe it really means that I have farther to travel on the road to size acceptance than I thought. Maybe it means I'm making the best of my life as it is, with the body I have (even though it's not the body I'd like to have). I don't know.................

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Please sign the petition to stop fat hatred on Facebook

If you haven't seen the petition to stop fat hatred on Facebook on another blog, it's on the sidebar here. Please sign it and help us get Facebook to put a stop to all the groups promoting hate speech against fat women (and men, but they're mainly going after women).
Atchka, of Fierce, Freethinking Fatties, started this campaign. One group has disappeared from FB, but there are over 300 more, and some of those groups have over 100,000 members. That's a lot of hate, folks, and it carries over into the real world. We've all had to deal with the haters in our lives, and I agree with Atchka - it's time to draw a line in the sand and say "This is unacceptable and intolerable and we're not going to take it anymore."
FFF also has some great ideas on Guerrilla Activism (and if you check out that link, you'll find a couple of other posts that have some good ideas, too).

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Dear Abby misses it again - as usual when it comes to fat

I just had to take Dear Abby to task today over advice she gave to a woman who wrote asking what to tell a patient who asked if she was "happy with the way I have let myself go." Letter-writer had been dealing with her mother's cancer over the period of 2 years and her mother had recently died. LW works in a medical office, and sees patients as often as every 3 months or as seldom as once a year.
Naturally, dealing with the stress of her mother's illness and death, her weight has fluctuated in that time. She asked Abby how to deal with the comments about her weight.
Abby's advice?
I see no reason why, if someone is so insensitive as to mention your weight, you shouldn't let the person have the truth with both barrels. If that doesn't shame him or her into an apology, nothing will. However, because you prefer to conceal it, try this response: "You know, I gained this weight the old-fashioned way -- one bite at a time, and that's the way it'll have to come off."

No, no, and hell, no!!! My response to Abby follows (yeah, I wrote her a letter):
Dear Abby,
This is about Impatient with My Patients In Rhode Island from July 10, 2010, who gained weight when her mother was sick and dying/died of cancer. Your answer - that she should tell people who commented on her weight gain that the weight would come off just like it came on - one bite at a time - is less than stellar. Since when is it anyone's business whether Impatient is happy with her weight or not? Your answer perpetuates the myth that others have the right to comment on anyone's body, which is definitely not so (her body, her business).
How she gained the weight is no one's business, and whether she intends to lose it or not is no one's business. A much better reply would have been for her to say "Why do you want to know?" accompanied by a cold stare. That puts the onus back on the asker, and usually makes them feel like a fool for asking a question that is none of their business (which they rightly should feel).
You're also assuming that Impatient gained the weight by overeating, which may not necessarily be so. If she was under a great deal of stress dealing with her mother's illness and death, that can wreak havoc with one's metabolism, which can cause fluctuations in weight without a change in eating habits (so you perpetuated a stereotype, thanks a lot....NOT).
You really need to educate yourself about Health At Every Size and Fat/Size Acceptance if you're going to give advice to fat people. Perpetuating stereotypes and body-shaming is not the way to help fat people deal with a fat-phobic world (and even those who are not-so-fat but have put on few pounds for whatever reason).
Fat and Proud in MN

Friday, June 25, 2010

Need to vent - extended family sucks!

Right now, I don't care if DH's ex-family reads this or not. I'm so pissed off at most of them that I could spit nails.

Some background info - One of DH's stepsons (K) is married, but legally separated from his wife (J). They have 2 girls (aged 10 and 11 years). K and J were in the process of getting a divorce, K had a girlfriend, J has a boyfriend, so both of them were moving on with their lives.

K got sick, ended up in the hospital, and it's serious. He's been diagnosed with ADEM, which is a brain infection (acute disseminated encephalomyelitis). Treatment for it is either steroids (he can't take those, he's allergic) or blood transfusions and plasma infusions. The doctors have said his recovery could take 2 to 5 years and they don't expect him to make a full recovery (so the divorce is on hold for now).

Right now, he's in the nursing home attached to our local hospital. He can't walk on his own (one side of his body is very weak), and he can't communicate other than to say yes, no, what, really, and fuck you. And those aren't always said in the appropriate circumstances. He can't even write his name or anything else right now.

So why does this whole situation have me so pissed off? His wife is doing everything she can to make sure that he's taken care of properly, and is signing over all rights for his medical power of attorney to his oldest brother (B), so that the rest of the family can't say that she's taking advantage of K's vulnerability. What's the rest of the family doing? Well, for people who didn't do much visiting with K when he was well, they're really concerned about him now, but not so concerned that any of them are willing to step up to the plate and take care of his bills or offer to take him in and take care of him (other than the 2 oldest brothers). All they can do is bitch about how they don't trust his wife to handle the money from the up-coming benefit (that her friends are setting up) for K, and if she has access to that account, some of them refuse to contribute. This is in spite of the fact that, even though they are legally separated, she has to carry him on her health insurance at her place of employment. Which means she has to pay premiums and co-pays out of her paycheck. She's signed K up for SSDI, but the nursing home will take all of that. But evidently K's family don't think that J is entitled to take any money donated at the benefit to cover co-pays on K's medical bills.

All this backstabbing and bitching is going on on Facebook, and since DH and I have friended most of them (well, all but his ex-wife, K's mom, I was friends with her on FB and she unfriended me, now all of a sudden, since K is in the nursing home in our town and we can go see him more often than anyone else, she wants to be friends again), this shit shows up on my wall every fucking day. I keep telling myself, stay out of it, you aren't related to any of them, you don't owe any of them anything.

The thing is, J and I get along, K and DH get along, and whatever happened in their marriage is between them, none of my business (yeah, J and I talked about their problems, and I told her "do what's best for you and the girls and don't worry about what anyone else thinks, they don't have to live your life, you do").

I told K's twin sister in a FB message (she tried to drag me into the fighting) that none of them should care who is doing what for K, as long as it gets done, and it's in K's best interest. But I don't think any of them are really thinking about K at all. If they were, they wouldn't be posting this shit on Facebook for him to see, and he will see it when he gets better. They aren't taking into consideration how he's going to feel when he reads the shit they've said about his wife, especially after all she's been doing for him, nor are they thinking about how he's going feel about seeing the pictures they've taken of him while he's sick and they've posted on FB. All they're thinking about is how this affects them, they don't care how it's affecting J or K or their daughters.

But DH and I will be there for J, K, and the girls - the rest of the family can go fuck themselves for all I care. And I thought my family had problems..............

Thursday, June 10, 2010

I like this doctor (humor)

His practice has no room for new patients! (Gee, I wonder why that would be? vesta44)

Q: Doctor, I've heard that cardiovascular exercise can prolong life. Is this true?
A: Heart only good for so many beats, and that it... Don't waste on exercise. Everything wear out eventually. Speed up heart not make live longer; that like say you can extend life of car by driving faster. Want live longer? Take nap.
Q: Should I cut down on meat and eat more fruits and vegetables?
A: You must grasp logistical efficiencies. What does cow eat? Hay and corn. What are these? Vegetables. So, steak nothing more than efficient mechanism of delivering vegetables to system. Need grain? Eat chicken. Beef also good source of field grass (green leafy vegetable). And pork chop can give 100% recommended daily allowance of vegetable products.
Q: Should I reduce my alcohol intake?
A: No, not at all. Wine made from fruit. Brandy is distilled wine. That means they take water out of fruity bit; get even more of goodness that way. Beer also made out of grain. Bottoms up!
Q: How can I calculate my body/fat ratio?
A: If you have body and you have fat, ratio is one to one. If you have two bodies, ratio is two to one, etc.
Q: What are some of the advantages of participating in a regular exercise program?
A: Cannot think of single one, sorry.. My philosophy: No Pain....Good!
Q: Aren't fried foods bad for you?
A: YOU NOT LISTENING!!! ...... Foods fried in vegetable oil. How getting more vegetables be bad for you?
Q: Will sit-ups help prevent me from getting a little soft around the middle?
A: Definitely not! When you exercise muscle, it get bigger. You should only do sit-ups if want bigger stomach.
Q: Is chocolate bad for me?
A: You crazy? HELLO ... Cocoa beans! Vegetable!!! Cocoa beans best feel-good food around!
Q: Is swimming good for your figure?
A: If swimming good for figure, explain whales to me.
Q: Is getting in-shape important for my lifestyle?
A: Hey! 'Round' is shape!
Well, I hope this has cleared up any misconceptions you may have had about food and diets.
For those of you who watch what you eat, here's the final word on nutrition and health. It's a relief to know the truth after all those conflicting nutritional studies:
1. The Japanese eat very little fat
And suffer fewer heart attacks than Americans..
2. The Mexicans eat a lot of fat
And suffer fewer heart attacks than Americans..
3. The Chinese drink very little red wine
And suffer fewer heart attacks than Americans..
4 The Italians drink a lot of red wine
And suffer fewer heart attacks than Americans...
5. The Germans drink a lot of beers and eat lots of sausages and fats
And suffer fewer heart attacks than Americans..
Eat and drink what you like. Speaking English is apparently what kills you.

Maxine has done it again.......

Senior health care solution--according to Maxine

So you're a senior citizen and the government says no health care for you, what do you do?

Our plan gives anyone 65 years or older a gun and 4 bullets. You are allowed to shoot 2 senators and 2 representatives (no one says you have to kill them, wounding is preferable). Of Course, this means you will be sent to prison where you will get 3 meals a day, a roof over your head, and all the health care you need! New teeth, no problem. Need glasses, great. New hip, knees, kidney, lungs, heart? All covered.

And who will be paying for all of this? The same government that just told you that you are too old for health care. Plus, because you are a prisoner, you don't have to pay any income taxes anymore.


My aunt sent me this quite a while ago, and I just got around to posting it.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Size-Acceptance Study - Call for participants

This is a request I received and I'm posting it for anyone who is interested in participating.

Hi, my name is Michaela A. Null, and I am a doctoral student in Sociology at
Purdue University. I am doing a study about the embodiment of size-accepting fat
women, with attention to the ways in which gender, race, sexual orientation, and
body size intersect.

I am currently looking for individuals who are interested in volunteering to
participate in my study. If you are interested in volunteering to participate in
an interview, I ask that take an electronic informational survey, which will
take approximately 5 minutes. Please go here and complete the informational survey. After all survey data has been collected, participants will be selected for interviews, which will be conducted in-person, by phone, or via internet chat, and will last between an hour and an hour and a half.

Participation is voluntary and participants must be at least 18 years old.

This project has been approved by my university’s Institutional Review Board,
which protects human subjects of research. I will provide confidentiality to all
volunteers and participants will be referred to by a pseudonym in all research

If you have any questions regarding this study, you can contact me at For more information on me, you can access my university
profile here [].
You can also contact Professor Eugene Jackson, Assistant Professor of Sociology
at Purdue University, at


Michaela A. Null, Doctoral Candidate in Sociology, Purdue University

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Fat Cat going blind

Took Fat Cat to the vet today to have his vision checked. He hasn't been coming downstairs at night to sleep with us like he usually does, and he's been wandering around the house, making this pitiful meowing sound. Then he sits and stares off into space. He's also not jumping on the furniture like he used to, and he's been spending most of his time under my computer desk, between my feet.

We also think he's losing his hearing, since he doesn't come when he's called either (not that he always came when he was called before). The vet had his assistant bang a couple of metal food dishes together and Fat Cat didn't even flinch or turn toward her at the sound. And when he was put down on the floor in the exam room, he didn't want to move from where he was set down. When he finally did move, he walked slower than normal and almost walked into the walls and the cabinet (his whiskers stopped him in time to keep him from bumping his nose).

So it looks like we won't be re-arranging furniture or moving the cat dishes or the litter box from now on. Fat Cat can navigate the house right now because nothing has changed in it since he started losing his sight (and I think this has been happening gradually for about 6 months or so, now that I look back his actions over that time).

In the time since we've had Marty, Fat Cat has gone from 14 lbs to 11 lbs, so he's not such a Fat Cat anymore (I've been calling him our not-so-Fat-Cat). We've started feeding him canned cat food since he doesn't seem to be getting enough calories from the weight and hairball control Iams we've been feeding both the cats. The vet said that at Fat Cat's age (he's 10 or 11 years old), it's not unusual for an in-bred cat to lose hearing and eyesight. He did say that we should keep an eye on him to see if he has any unusual head twitches, or starts walking in circles (like he's being pulled to one side instead of walking in a straight line). I guess those are either signs of a stroke or brain damage (which he doesn't have right now, thank maude).

He's still eating pretty good, and drinking plenty of water, and using the litter box, so that's all good. And he still likes catnip, and was just playing with the catnip twitter bird that I got for him and Marty with our Pounce treat points (hey, if I'm buying them treats anyway, and the points will get them a free toy, why not?).

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Gullibility - I can't believe he believed my husband.

My husband was talking to one of his co-workers about his knee replacement the other day. Co-worker wanted to know how knee replacements were done. DH told him they cut the knee apart, shave part of the bone off and screw in replacement parts to the top bone and bottom bone in the leg. Co-worker wanted to know how that was working for DH. DH said fine, except that they ran out of screws when it came time to screw in the part for the top bone, so they had to duct-tape it in. C-W asked if the duct tape hurt, DH said no, it was special duct tape, made just for that eventuality. C-W wanted to know if they were going to cut his knee back open and put screws back in when they got more. DH said hell no, one surgery was plenty for him, and the duct tape was working just fine.
DH came home and told me this story and I was rolling in the floor, laughing so hard. I can't believe someone would actually believe that (but I can believe that my husband is such a bullshitter that he would say something like that)! To top it all off, DH came home from work Sunday and said that the co-worker had asked him again how the duct tape was holding up on his knee. I'm trying to decide if he really believes DH or if he's pulling DH's leg now.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Swimsuit review: Junonia

I ordered a new swimsuit from Junonia, and being the first time I ordered from them, I ordered a 4X. It fit fine everywhere except the bust (it squished the rack of doom something awful). So I called to return it and make sure it was available in a 6X in the color I wanted (turquoise, this one). Well, they only had the turquoise one in black in a 6X, so I ended up ordering this one instead. It was $20 more, and I had to pay return shipping on the one I returned to exchange, but it was so worth it.
I returned the turquoise one last week, and the black and hot pink one came today. I can tell you right now that I'll never order another swimsuit from anyone else ever again. When it comes to swimsuits, Junonia has all of my business forever, or as long as they're making swimsuits in my size. This is the first time I've ever had a swimsuit that the bra part of it actually fit the rack of doom and gave it support. The suit is easy to get in and out of, and it actually looks pretty good on me (I think I look good in it, which is saying something for me, I don't usually think that about swimsuits). The only thing that could be improved is that it's just a bit long in the torso for me, but I'm willing to deal with that for the way the rest of the suit fits so well.
I hated to spend that amount of money on a swimsuit, but now that I have the suit and have tried it on and compared it to every other less expensive swimsuit I've ever owned, it's well worth the $109.95 plus shipping that I paid for it (DH thinks so too, he likes the way I look in it).
If you're looking for a swimsuit, and have a rack of doom and are fat to boot, Junonia is the place to go. I can't recommend them enough (and no, I'm not getting anything from them for saying this).

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Carpal tunnel surgery results

Well, I had my carpal tunnel surgery on February 5th, stitches came out 10 days later, and my hand is still numb. Doctor says it could take as long as 6 months for the numbness to go away, and I could still end up with some numbness all the time. I've never seen carpal tunnel surgery done where mine was done on my hand. I have an incision that's 1.5" long and starts at the heel of my hand, just above my wrist, and runs into the palm of my hand (I always thought it was done more in the wrist than in the hand). My hand is still sore on either side of the incision whenever I put any pressure on it, and when I was making some of the new curtains for the living room this weekend, it felt like it was burning under the incision (I think from the pressure of using the iron to press the hems/casings on the curtains).
I only did 4 panels, I still have 12 more to go. My hand is going to be killing me if I don't take it easy. I think what I may have to do is plan on pressing and sewing 2 panels a day, and doing them every other day in order to give my hand a chance to rest. It's not the sewing that bothered me so much, it was the ironing that did me in, putting enough pressure on the iron to get the wrinkles out of the fabric and making sure the hems and casings were pressed in crisply.
I did see the neurologist last week, and she wants to do another EMG in September to see how that nerve is healing (and she wants to check the ulnar nerve in my left arm, I told her I had damage to it from 15 years ago that nothing had ever been done about). So yay, I get to have two EMGs done in September.
I'm going to do what she said, and keep wearing my wrist brace at night and when I'm driving long distances (more than 30 miles or so). The doctor who did the surgery said I didn't need to wear it anymore, but he's an orthopedist, not a neurologist, so I'm going to go by what the neurologist says.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Muve Gruve to help fight "obesity"

This doesn't surprise me at all, but I think it's probably going to be a waste of $835,000. And I'm sorry, but that name is just too cutesy (barf!).
Muve, a company created by Dr. James Levine of Mayo Clinic in Rochester, is moving ahead with more research funded by a $835,000 federal grant.
The goal? Strengthen the company's battle against the U.S. obesity epidemic. More that 72 million U.S. adults are considered obese.
"People who are overweight and obese need real support, real solutions," said Muve COO Jim Meyer, who wrote the application for the grant with Dr. Levine about 1 1/2 years ago. "We try to make it simple and to make meaningful. This research will help with that."

I can give you some hints on the real support and real solutions we fat people need, and none of them are tied to weight loss (but they are tied to improvement in health). How about making access to fresh/frozen fruits and veggies easier/cheaper for everyone? How about making safe places for everyone to get out and play/walk/bike? How about making sure everyone has enough income and time to prepare meals from scratch instead of having to rely on processed foods? Oh, those won't make fat people thinner, they'll just make them healthier, and healthier isn't the real goal here, is it?
The Gruve is a small iPod-like electronic device worn by people to track their daily calorie burn using activity sensors backed up by Dr. Levine's research. Going through the Muve process, individuals set a daily calorie usage goal to hit a targeted weight loss and health standard.

Yep, here we go again with the calories in/out bullshit = weightloss = health. EPIC FAIL, people, need I say more?
The first phases of the research will focus on the Gruve's performance as an anti-obesity tool, Meyer said. The later phases will explore additional versions of Gruve, possibly targeted at different age groups.

How long is this research going to last and how long is the follow-up going to be on the people who use this contraption to lose weight? What do you want to bet it's not going to be near long enough to find out that people who lost weight using this also started gaining weight back even though they kept using it the way they were instructed?
"We are thinking about doing a product for adolescents that we're loosely calling a Gruve Jr.," Meyer said. "And on other end of the spectrum, we want to research the possibility of a Gruve Sr."

I don't even want to think what the branding on these will look like.
Levine and others formed Muve in 2007 to create the Gruve using a system developed at Mayo Clinic based on the theory that small but steady movement can combat weight loss caused by the modern sedentary lifestyle.
Mayo Clinic and Dr. Levine have a financial interest in technology licensed to Muve. Mayo also holds an equity position in the company.

Follow the money, folks, they want in on the billions of dollars spent on weight loss products and WLS just isn't cutting it anymore (pun fully intended).
While Muve does sell to directly to consumers through its Web site, the majority of its sales are done now through corporate programs, with companies buying or partially funding the purchase of Gruves for employees.

Gee, think they want to get insurance companies to pay for these things too? Another way to get more money for something that doesn't really work long-term.
Overall, Meyer says that he believes the society's position on obesity is reaching the point that it was at with smoking 20 years, 25 years ago.
"People are started to get that obesity is hurting everybody."

Um, no, my fat isn't hurting my kids or my grandkids or the next-door neighbor or the guy sitting next to me at the bar like second-hand smoke does, thank you very much. My fat isn't causing disease (it can be correlated, but that is NOT causation).
I'm sorry, but fat is not the next "health war" that needs to be fought. If you want to fight a health war, fight for affordable access to health care for everyone.

Monday, March 29, 2010

The role of fat in brain evolution

This was in a post on one of the diabetes lists I belong to, and I'm thinking this book might be a very interesting read.
I ran across this book today on Dr. Michael Eades blog, "Survival of the Fattest." Here's a description from the publishers...

"How did humans evolve larger and more sophisticated brains?

In general, evolution depends on a special combination of circumstances: part genetics, part time, and part environment. In the case of human brain evolution, the main environmental influence was adaptation to a ‘shore-based’ diet, which provided the world’s richest source of nutrition, as well as a sedentary lifestyle that promoted fat deposition. Such a diet included shellfish, fish, marsh plants, frogs, bird’s eggs, etc. Humans and, and more importantly, hominid babies started to get fat, a crucial distinction that led to the development of larger brains and to the evolution of modern humans. A larger brain is expensive to maintain and this increasing demand for energy results in, succinctly, survival of the fattest."

So if we hadn't acquired sufficient fat, who knows what we humans might have become? This is a far cry from what we usually hear!

It's an expensive book to buy, but if you are interested, you might find it in your library...

So what will this mean for all those fat babies that everyone thinks need to be put on diets and shouldn't be fat? Seems to me that babies need that fat to help their brains grow and develop and depriving them of their fat stores is going to stunt their brain growth and development. I don't think that is something this country needs - generations of children with smaller and less capable brains simply because some people think fat isn't aesthetically pleasing. Talk about cutting your nose off to spite your face - that's a case of epic fail right there, people.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

How Weight-Loss Surgery Reverses Type 2 Diabetes: New Study Offers Explanation

This article is another in a long line of articles that is giving (false) hope to type 2 diabetics that there will be a way to put their diabetes into remission.
I belong to a couple of diabetes lists, and this link appeared on one of them, with a few comments from members of the list saying "Yeah good news if only I could find someone who would do it & ins to cover it over the age of 65." and similar things. No concerns about future complications from that kind of surgery; in fact, one person had the comment: "If you are healthy enough to survive a hysterectomy, then a bariatric surgeon would probably do the surgery for you. The risk of dying during the bariatric surgery is the same as that for a hysterectomy. The insurance is a another story. If you qualify for disability Social Security then all it takes is a phone to call to Medicare and within 2 weeks you would be qualified. Unlike other insurance companies Medicare views obesity as an illness and treatable by surgery." That doesn't take into account the risk of dying in the first week after bariatric surgery, or the first month, let alone what any of the other complications of bariatric surgery are and how they can be much worse than any of the complications of type 2 diabetes.
How scary is it that Medicare would qualify someone over the age of 65 for bariatric surgery in 2 weeks? Doesn't sound to me like Medicare would be doing the necessary psychological evaluation, and bariatric surgeons are notorious for not caring about the psychological health of their patients, as long as those patients are healthy enough to make it out of surgery (and their insurance will pay for that surgery).

So, back to the article -
"Bariatric surgery currently is considered to be the most effective long-term treatment for human obesity and often leads to marked improvements in diabetes," said the study's lead author Peter Havel, a professor with joint appointments in the School of Veterinary Medicine and Department of Nutrition.

If bariatric surgery is the most effective long-term treatment for obesity there is, we are in a heap of shit, people, because it ain't that effective. Most "obese" people don't lose enough weight to become "overweight", let alone thin. A good percentage of those who lose weight end up regaining most or all of what they lost, and those who don't regain end up with complications that are so much worse than any of the so-called ill effects of "obesity" that they would much rather have stayed fat than have had the surgery.

"This study confirms our clinical observations that metabolic regulation -- specifically homeostasis of glucose -- occurs quickly after gastric bypass surgery," said Mohamed Ali, an associate professor of gastrointestinal surgery and a specialist in bariatric surgery at UC Davis Health System. "It's clear from the outcome that something physiologic is at work with controlling diabetes that is not related to weight loss.

And instead of trying to find out what the physiologic cause is, let's just go with modifying a functioning digestive system, because that has to be where the problem is. After all, when we mutilated a functioning digestive system, we managed to accidently put type 2 diabetes into remission for a short period of time, so maybe, if we fuck with it some more, we can extend that period of time (yeah, right, I'm not going to hold my breath on that one, folks).

In severe cases of obesity -- usually when the patient is 80 to 100 or more pounds overweight -- bariatric surgery is used to alter or reconstruct the stomach and/or the intestinal tract. In such cases, obesity is not just a weight issue but also a life-threatening health problem that often leads to type 2 diabetes, heart disease and sleep apnea.

Yeah, how many thin people have type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and sleep apnea? Why did they get it? Can't blame it on fat in their cases, so why is fat blamed when fat people get the same diseases as thin people? Logic FAIL, researchers.

Havel and colleagues set out to test a hypothesis that certain bariatric surgical procedures were successful in improving type 2 diabetes, at least in part, because the procedures increased the flux of unabsorbed nutrients to the far end of the small intestine and, in doing so, triggered increased secretion of two hormones. Those hormones -- glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) and peptide-YY (PYY) -- are known to have a role in controlling food intake and improving insulin secretion and insulin sensitivity, thereby helping to stabilize blood sugar levels.
To test the hypothesis, the researchers carried out a surgical procedure known as ileal interposition in a line of rats that were predisposed to obesity and type 2 diabetes. The rat model, developed in Havel's laboratory, was known as the UC Davis Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus (UCD-T2DM) Rat. The pathology of type 2 diabetes in these animals is more similar to type 2 diabetes in humans than other existing rodent models of the disease.

So they used rats predisposed to develop type 2 diabetes (gee, just like some people are genetically predisposed to develop type 2 diabetes). Whoever would have thought of that? (/sarcasm)

They found that the rats receiving the ileal interposition surgery developed type 2 diabetes 120 days later than did the rats in the control group. Furthermore, by the time the rats were one year old, 78 percent of the control group rats were diabetic while only 38 percent of the rats that had received the ileal interposition procedure had developed diabetes.
Havel said the delay in onset of diabetes in the rats would be similar to delaying the age of onset of diabetes by approximately 10 years in a person, which would be expected to significantly decrease the amount of time for diabetic complications to develop, and to reduce the health care costs associated with treating this costly and prevalent disease.

And do they know what the possible side effects of this surgery in humans could be? Are those side effects worth the 10-year delay in the onset of type 2 diabetes (will it be cheaper to treat the side effects or the diabetes for that 10 years)? No one knows, and I'd venture to say that no one has even considered those questions.

Sunday, February 28, 2010

Bananas out the wazoo!

Our step-daughter-in-law's brother got half a pallet of bananas (that's 24 boxes) that were going to be thrown away (the bananas were still green) and he gave her a box of them (she gave us half the box, that's 20 lbs of bananas).
I was trying to figure out what I was going to do with all those bananas, since one gets tired of eating banana bread all the time. So I put 4 peeled bananas in a quart zipper freezer bag, mashed the bananas, zipped it closed, and dated the bag. Did that until I ran out of bananas, and put them all in the freezer. Now, when I want banana bread/cake/muffins/etc, all I have to do is pull a bag of mashed bananas out of the freezer, let them thaw, cut a corner off the bag, and squeeze them into the mixing bowl when they go into the recipe.
That was much easier than mashing the bananas in a bowl and then trying to transfer them to a freezer bag, and the bags take up less room in the freezer than small containers would. And I don't have to wash the bags when I'm done, I can throw them away.
What chaps my hide about these bananas? Whatever store ordered them and the company that shipped them - well, if the store ordered 50 boxes of bananas, they come 48 boxes to a pallet, so the company ships 2 pallets, which is 96 boxes. The store doesn't need 96 boxes, they only need 50, so those other 46 boxes get thrown away (unless there's a truck driver or two or three who are willing to take them). Which is how the step-DIL's brother got the pallet, he split it with another truck driver rather than see them get thrown away (and they both went around finding people who were willing to buy boxes or half-boxes of bananas for less than what they would have paid for them at a store). That part I don't have a problem with, but what if there wasn't anyone who was willing to take them? That's a lot of bananas that would have gone to waste, and that happens with all kinds of other produce. Now why can't those overages be donated to food shelves so that they aren't wasted, and people who can't normally afford to buy fresh fruits and veggies would have an opportunity to get some at no cost? I would think that could also be a tax deduction for the store also, donating to a food shelf.............certainly makes more sense than throwing it away.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Spam phone calls are so much fun!

We got a phone call today, caller was asking for DH by name (first name). I handed the phone to him, and he talked for about 10 seconds and then said "You'll have to talk to my wife, she handles all the money matters in our household." and handed the phone to me. The guy on the phone didn't identify himself, asked me if I was Mrs. DH, and when I said yes, said that DH was due a tax refund of $6,038 and...... That was all the further he got because I told him it was a scam and I hung up on him.
Now, what had given me the idea that it was a scam? Other than the fact that we had already done our taxes for the year and knew we didn't have a refund coming? Well, for one thing, this same voice had called on Tuesday, caller ID had said UNKNOWN NAME/UNKNOWN NUMBER, when he asked for DH, DH wasn't available and I said so, he asked when would be a good time to call back, I said in an hour, and he never called back. Number two, first call today from same voice, was unknown name, but phone number had an area code of 000 (which doesn't exist), when I answered, I could hear lots of people talking in the background but couldn't understand the caller. When I asked who they were calling, they hung up on me. In less than 5 minutes, got another call, which was the one asking for DH and talking about the tax refund (and this time, name and number were blocked). The voice on this second call today was the same as the voice on the call Tuesday.
I really doubt that whoever/whatever will be calling back, since sie is now aware that we are aware sie are a scam and we aren't falling for it. I think the reason sie hung up on me the first time today is because sie forgot to block the number when sie called.
I would say that this is one of those things that falls under "if it sounds too good to be true, it's probably a rip-off." I wonder how long this one has been going around, and how many people have bought into it?

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Friday Kitteh Blogging

Marty likes to sleep on the back of the chair.

FatKat and Marty have learned to share sleeping space (most of the time).

Marty likes a pillow when he sleeps.

Sunday, January 31, 2010

Yummy Home-made Chicken Pot Pie

DH likes pot pies but they're just too expensive at the store anymore (for what you get), so we came up with our own recipe for home-made pot pie.

2 - 9" pie crusts
1 - 12 oz bag mixed veggies
2 - 12.5 oz cans chunk chicken
1 - 10.5 oz can cream of chicken soup

I put one pie crust on the bottom of a 9" glass pie pan, put the mixed veggies in it, drained the juice off the canned chicken and put the chicken on top of the veggies, then put the cream of chicken soup on top of that and spread it all out so it was even and level with the top of the pie pan. Then I put the other pie crust on top and crimped it all around. Baked it for an hour at 400 degrees. YUMMY!!!!!
It makes 4 servings, so we have it for dinner one night and lunch the next day.

Our next experiment is going to be a beef pot pie, using left-over roast and cream of mushroom soup with the mixed veggies.
The nice thing is that it doesn't take long to make, and it's not expensive either. I got the pie crusts at Wal-Mart, 2 pkgs for $2 (that's 4 pie crusts), the mixed veggies are $1.25 a bag, the soup is $ .79, and the canned chicken was $2.12 a can. So for $7.28, I got 2 meals for the 2 of us (and if you use left-overs from other meals, the potpies are even cheaper to make).

Friday, January 29, 2010

Filing taxes this year sucks!!! Thank you, Mr President!

Thank you, Mr President, for your useless rebates last year. You gave us that money last year, and this year, you're taking it away it from us. We can really fucking afford that, you clueless politician.
We usually itemize our taxes, but this year, because of trying to get a loan modification on our mortgage, we didn't have enough mortgage interest to have enough deductions to itemize. So those two $250 rebates we got were deducted from the $800 making work pay credit. Every year we've gotten money back on our federal taxes, but not this year. This year, we have to pay in, and the main reason we have to pay in is because of that damned "making work pay" credit and those fucking $250 rebates from last year. Yeah, it really paid for DH to work last year, didn't it? It sure as fuck didn't pay us for him to work, but it paid the government for him to work. Instead of us getting a tax refund, not only do they get our rebates from last year back, but they also get more money from us.
That sure as shit isn't doing anything to help the middle class, I can tell you that right fucking now (can you tell I'm just a little bit pissed off about this?). I mean, FFS, we're not affluent, by any means. It took DH's job, his Navy retirement, AND my SSDI for us to make less than $60K last year (and DH pays taxes on his Navy retirement too).
We're better off than a lot of other people who make the same amount of money as we do, since we don't have any kids to support and we do have good health care through the VA and TriCare/Medicare (not to mention the fact that DH has a job and hasn't gotten laid off or let go, thank Maude). But if we have to pay in, I can imagine what's happening to other people this year when they go to have their taxes done, and the rude surprise they're going to get when they find out they have to deduct those rebates, and I really feel for them.
I'm beginning to be damned glad I didn't vote for Obama (I'll let you guess who was my write-in candidate, and I think she would be doing a hell of a lot better job than Obama right about now). I'm tired of being lied to, ignored, and thrown under the bus when it comes to campaign promises made and not kept. I thought Obama was going to be different, but I should have known better. First and foremost, he's a politician, and worst of all, he's a Chicago politician (and that's the worst thing you can call a politician, IMO). I used to live in Illinois, and I don't know many people there who have a good opinion of Chicago politicians (unless they're trying to curry favor with them, of course). I should have remembered that politicians will tell you whatever they think you want to hear, and make whatever promises they think it will take to get them elected, and once they're elected, it's "Hooray for me, and fuck you, I don't need you now, but I'll keep stringing you along, just in case." It's not even a choice between the lesser of two evils any more, both parties are out to fuck us all over (unless we have a lobbyist with beau-coup bucks to pay them to do things for us instead of to us). Cynical? Me? Whatever gave you that idea?

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Fattened by pills

This is not something you will see trumpeted from every newspaper in the land. In fact, I'm surprised it got printed at all. You wonder why I'm so amazed that this article got printed?
Here are a few excerpts:
As Americans struggle to keep New Year’s weight-loss resolutions, experts’ alarms about obesity ring in our heads. We obsess about portion control, flock to the gym, and can’t get enough of The Biggest Loser. As schools, congressional subcommittees, and even first lady Michelle Obama -- who’s made the issue a top priority -- take on the problem, the focus turns to the usual suspects: fast food, oversize servings, and sedentary lifestyle. For some battling weight problems, those factors are indeed critical. But overlooked in all this is one of the primary causes of America’s obesity epidemic: The elephant in the living room is the skyrocketing use of psychiatric drugs.

How many of us who have had to deal with some kind of mental illness know all about that "elephant in the living room"?
Many of these, which are used to treat emotional problems including depression and anxiety, cause weight gain -- often of the rapid and massive sort -- as one of their “side effects,” that brilliant marketing term for what are simply negative effects of a drug.

What do you want to bet that studies have never been done to determine how many fat people are taking those drugs? What do you want to bet that the reason those studies have never been done is because pharmaceutical companies don't want anyone to know how many people went from average-size to "overweight" or "overweight" to "obese" because of those psychiatric drugs? After all, if those numbers were known, pharma just might have to figure out how to come up with drugs without those nasty "side effects" of weight gain (not to mention that they then couldn't push their weight loss drugs, with all their nasty "side effects", on fat people).
It is striking that the weight of many Americans has ballooned just as the prescribing of psychiatric drugs has surged. The Obesity Society categorizes nearly two-thirds of adult Americans as overweight, the average weight of an adult having increased since 1960 by 25 pounds, and between 1996 and 2006 alone, prescriptions of psychiatric drugs for US adults increased 73 percent.

Coincindence? I think not.
The courageous Alaskan attorney James Gottstein in 2006 exposed drug company Eli Lilly’s concealment of its knowledge about the effects of its drug Zyprexa3 (approved to treat schizophrenia and bipolar disorder but also prescribed for other conditions) on weight gain, and subsequent reports have revealed such effects of a whole range of psychiatric drugs. But nearly all researchers and journalists who focus on obesity fail to mention the drug link.

Gee, I wonder why? Could it be that if they mentioned the link, they wouldn't be able to blame fat people anymore for being fat? The fact that we're fat wouldn't be because we're lazy, stupid, couch potatoes, who stuff our faces all day long - it would be a nasty side effect of drugs prescribed by our doctors, and not our fault at all.
It’s hard not to wonder why this happens. Could drug companies be that much more powerful than fast-food chains, or does it take the former much longer to come up with drugs lacking unwanted effects than for McDonald’s to produce healthier foods in smaller portions? Is it perhaps clinicians’ fear of not knowing what to do other than prescribe these drugs? If so, then it’s time to broaden their training so they know more about the wide array of other courses of action that can help many who suffer from emotional problems, such as exercise, meditation, changes in vitamin/mineral intake, participating in the arts, volunteer work, and developing or maintaining close friendships. Whatever the reasons, the result is that not enough people know that many of these emotionally troubled patients now will have added burdens.

No shit, Sherlock. Not only do we have other people making fun of us because we're fat, but the media - with their scare-mongering and photos of headless fatties don't help. Neither do the doctors who have prescribed these medications, and should know the side effects, but still manage to blame us for being fat, and tell us it's just a matter of eat less/move more (fuck you very much, doc, I'm tired of hearing that bullshit).
What’s worse is that the connection between psychiatric drugs and obesity involves children, too. Over the past two decades the number of obese adolescents has tripled, while the 10 years after 1996 saw prescriptions of psychiatric drugs for US children rise 50 percent. And a new federal study shows that poor children are more likely than other kids to be put on drugs marketed as antipsychotics, one of the greatest culprits for causing major weight gain as well as lifelong metabolic problems. Add the humiliation to which kids subject overweight peers, and the potential psychological damage is frightening.

I don't even know what to say to this, other than it's fucked up.
Another disturbing link could be on the way. The fifth edition of the major psychiatric diagnostic manual, the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-V), is expected to be released in 2013. One proposal under consideration: listing obesity as a mental illness. That would be a mistake, since obesity can be caused by metabolic and other physical problems that are often undiagnosed. And because obesity can also result from psychiatric drugs, calling it a mental illness would create a vicious cycle: Someone is troubled, put them on drugs, they become obese, therefore diagnose them as mentally ill, give them more drugs.

All I can say to this is that if they manage to list obesity as a mental illness, we are in for a world of hurt. That way lies madness - a Catch-22 with no solution.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Bathroom remodel advice for the fat

We recently finished our bathroom remodel. Had the bathtub taken out and a 5' shower stall installed (if you're my size, make sure it's deeper than 30"). A 30" depth on the shower is not quite enough if you're using a shower curtain and not shower doors, as the curtain tends to move around a lot and ends up clinging to you. We solved the problem by using clips to hold the curtain to the wall at the shower head end of the shower and magnets attached to the bottom of the curtain and the raised outside edge of the shower to keep it from moving around. This allows enough room to shower without getting wrapped up in the shower curtain and pulling it down (and getting water all over the floor).
We also had new linoleum installed on the floor, and replaced the toilet with the higher, handicapped toilet (my knees are thanking me).
The walls were originally light blue with white trim, but the paint job left something to be desired (the ceiling was white, but the blue from the walls showed thru on the edges, looked crappy). We repainted the ceiling white, 2 coats to cover up the blue from the last paint job, repainted the walls almost the same light blue, and did the door and all the trim work in a blue 2 shades darker than the walls. Then I made new curtains for the window that have those 2 shades of blue and 2 or 3 other shades of blue in them. We got dark blue rugs, and put a clear glass heart dish with blue stones and seashells on the gold towel stand by the shower. Then we have a small wire basket with small red and pink roses and more seashells in it sitting on the toilet tank.
Every time we go in there, we both say how good it looks and how much we like it now. The shower is so much easier to use than the bathtub was - the bathtub was one of those deep ones, and the side was knee-high on it, so it was difficult to get in and out of. Since neither of us take baths, but always take showers, and we don't have kids to worry about, we decided a shower stall was the way to go. And I love it. It has a seat at the far end, and we got one of those removable shower heads with the 5' hose on it, so we can sit and shower if we want to.
It's funny too, because even though we didn't add any room to the bathroom, taking out the tub and putting in the shower makes the bathroom look bigger, for some reason (and our bathroom isn't really that small to begin with, it's 8' X 10').

Thursday, January 7, 2010

I want a BB gun on my minivan

Yeah, I'm an aggressive bitch. Ever since DH has been off work, recuperating from his knee surgery, I've been driving him around when he gets antsy and just can't handle being in the house anymore (and that happens a lot at night).
I've realized that I really hate cars/trucks/vans that have those damned fog lights that are the size of headlights and aren't yellow like fog lights are supposed to be. When they have them lit at night (and they always do, headlights and fog lights), it can be blinding, even if you look at the right side of the road to avoid the lights.
Do these asshats not realize that in foggy conditions those white fog lights aren't going to do them one fucking bit of good? Driving with those white fog lights lit will be the same as driving with your bright lights on, and that's not something that is recommended to be done when it's foggy out (been there, tried that, and almost gone in the ditch).
So a BB gun mounted on the front of my minivan, with a joystick controller inside, would be awesome. Then when those asshats drive at me, I can shoot out their fog lights. Face it, people, if you're that blind at night that you need your bright headlights and white fog lights to see where you're going, you have no business on the road.
Well, it's not gonna happen, but I can dream, and I've gotten it out of my system for now...................til the next time I have to drive at night and get blinded by some asshole who thinks his vehicle needs to light up the road like a klieg light.

Fashion Bug find

DH took me shopping at Fashion Bug the other day, and lo and behold, I finally found my pants that I've been looking for forever. They actually have my knit pants with the slash pockets, elastic waist, and straight legs, and best of all, they come in a long length. I'm going to have to let the hem down, because even the long length, which is supposed to have a 31 1/2" inseam, is just a bit too short (but they have a 3/4" hem, so if I take out the hem and put in a minimal hem, they should be long enough). The color selection is awesome too - navy, black, brown, 2 shades of gray, baby blue, lilac, dark purple, olive green, and khaki. And the best part is the cost - only $14.99 a pair. The knit is heavier than the knit on the pants I found at ShopKo, and ShopKo only carries black, navy, and gray (at a cost of $16.99 each).
Then we hit up Catherine's, and I checked out the clearance racks (honestly, who can afford $48 for a printed t-shirt with a few sequins scattered on it?). I found 3 tops I liked that will go with pants I already have (originally, the 3 would have cost me $144) and I only paid $57.97 for them (50% off the marked down price). That was still more than I really wanted to pay, but DH liked the tops, and said if I liked them, go ahead and get them, so I did.
Now I can go through my closet and throw out all the old pants that have holes in them that I've been wearing anyway, and get rid of the tops that have stains on them. And the nice thing about Fashion Bug? There's one in Alexandria, and that's only 25 miles from us (and there's another one in St Cloud, which is only 45 miles away, and Catherine's is there too).
Now, if I could just find a place that sells bras in my size nearby so I can go in and try them on before I buy them. I ordered one from Roaman's, but it didn't fit. I sent it back, using the return label they sent, and they deducted the cost of the return label from my refund. I don't think I'll be doing that again. Ever since Goddess quit making the bra I liked, I haven't been able to find one that fits and is comfortable. I haven't been successful at finding fabric and the notions I need to make bras to fit me either. The elastic for straps and the fittings for adjusting those straps, well, let's just say they aren't made to support a rack of doom. I have enough problems with straps digging into my shoulders when they're an inch wide, I don't need my shoulders sliced up by 1/2" wide or narrower straps. And yeah, I know the straps aren't supposed to support the rack of doom, but in order to get the bra itself to support them, it has to be so tight I either can't hook it, or if I can hook it, I can't breathe when it's hooked. Damned if I do, damned if I don't.