Last Friday, I had my final post-op appointment with Dr. Cook that finalized the "surgical phase" of my treatment. I have been feeling so good for almost a week now that I was honestly able to tell him my pain levels were zero at the appointment (and I didn't have any pain meds in my system). Dr. Cook cleared me to resume all activity that I feel good enough to engage in as long as I take it in stages and don't overdo it. He also cleared me to do hot tub therapy and massage therapy. I feel like I've passed a major milestone!
The next step is to address the secondary issues Dr. Cook is concerned about--namely my low body temperature (I was 96.7F at the appointment--two degrees below normal). In the next week or two, I have to do a glucose/insulin 3 hour test and some other specialty blood work to determine if I have a thyroid issue or not.
Dr. Cook is also addressing my Vitamin D deficiency (normal is a level of 50-100 and I'm at 10). I'm now taking 6,000 i.u. of Vitamin D a day as directed by him. After taking the Vitamin D for two months, I have to do more blood work to see if my levels have gone up.
I'm focusing a lot of my efforts on adding more nutrients into my diet from whole foods like fruits and vegetables. Since I'm a "supertaster" and taste things with far more intensity than most people, eating some vegetables has always been a challenge for me because I taste unpalatable nuances in foods that others don't (e.g., fresh tomatoes taste like I'm eating the tomato plant instead of the fruit). So Hubby (who does all the cooking) is going to begin employing techniques used by Jessica Seinfeld in her cookbook Deceptively Delicious so I can get the good nutrition from the veggies without being able to taste those nuances.
In the past few years I've removed almost all trans fats (hydrogenated oils) from my diet and increased my intake of whole grains. I'm now trying to eliminate almost all processed flour as well as make sure the majority of my food is as close to fresh and unprocessed as possible.
Little by little as we tackle all the "mystery stuff", I know my health will increase even more. The surgery gave me the freedom. Dr. Cook gave me the clearance for "take off". Now I just need to make sure I'm fueled properly and ready to go.