Sunday, June 29, 2014

Closing Day 10: Exercise and a new food list! :)

Pain Level: 1 - Seems like the stitches/hooks have settled down a little. Please stay that way!
Swelling: Not much changes from the morning. Just realized that my face is a little stiff though... I think it's also cause I haven't quite been moving the muscles (smiling, talking...) for fear I might bust something!
Other weirdness: Seems that every part of my face feels normal except the left side of my chin and bottom lip. I was a little worried about the underside of my neck feeling a little hard, but it seems to have softened up a little.
Mood: Very happy and full from a wonderful dinner of a delicious homemade mushroom soup! And it was a pretty productive day. :)

I ended up spending the morning googling jaw surgery blogs in hope to stumble on blogs of other people who recently had their jaw surgery so that I might have a community of people to encourage and journey with. But nope, not much luck. Even those who commented elsewhere that they were going to have their surgeries soon, or that they had them, didn't have blogs. Ah well, at least I tried.

During my research on health/jaw surgery blogs this morning, I somehow stumbled on something about the Primal Blueprint, which is a healthy way of life, and I've gotten really interested in it. Reading the success stories was amazing and I think that's going to be my reading material sometime in the next few weeks. Gotta find a time to drop by a library though. :)

But all that procrastination aside, I finally spent some time after that, as planned, to look for a simple workout/stretch/toning regime. I generally avoided those that I could imagine my jaw feeling really uncomfortable with or being way too cardio that I'd probably faint at the end of it. This is what I found that might work:

  • Pilates by Lisa: Butt and Leg Sculpting Workout
    • I am a bit cautious about being in the push-up position. But I think I'll put a pillow underneath me just in case.
  • Pilates Butt and Thigh (Slow Workout)
    • I like it how slow and achievable this seemed. I wasn't too comfortable with how they had to proper their heads up with one hand... I don't know how happy my jaw is going to be with that, but I'll try.
  • 10 min Pilates sculpting (Arms)
    • This looks really achievable too... maybe except the exercises where I might just drop the dumbbells on my head if I get woozy. But I'm going to try any way and see how it goes. 
  • RS How to tone your upper arms
    • I'm just going to incorporate the simple arm circles and wall press from here. 

I'm going to try them tomorrow. I'm a little excited about getting into the habit of some stretching in the morning. I think I'll try to wake up earlier tomorrow too and go for a walk or something too.

Something new: Carrot porridge
Yuck. :(
I'm really thankful that I have a househelper who's concerned for me and is trying to make foods that are more interesting in hopes of having me eat a little more. This morning she tried making a blended carrot porridge. I thought that I would be happy because I know how great carrots are nutritionally, but it tasted so watered down and bland, I couldn't get past 40mls of it. 

Sometime today, I became officially frustrated with my diet - or lack of. 

I guess it also doesn't help that I'm pretty picky with what I eat now. Other than for the reasons why I'm a little adverse to eating nowadays, it's also because I've become a lot more concerned about the nutritional value of the foods I eat. I think it's just part of the healing process - that one just becomes a lot more health-conscious. But it really limits my choices.

Total No-nos for me now with regards to food/drinks

  • Very watery porridges and soups (I'm SO sick of them!)
  • Anything too high in sodium
  • Alcohol (I really don't know why any jaw surgery patient in their right mind would have alcohol after their surgery. Then again, I never really liked alcohol anyway)
  • Anything with MSG
  • Pretty much canned-anything (soups, processed foods etc....): because of the MSG, super high sodium contents, colourings, and all sorts of rubbishy stuff in them
  • Caffeine
  • And of course the sad reality now: No solids, crunchy foods, anything that is bigger than 0.3cm that can't fit through my teeth. :(

In my frustration, however, I had an epiphany! I realized that I have been doing this finding alternative recipes all wrong and I really shouldn't have been googling stuff like "Jaw surgery soups" or "Jaw surgery foods" because a lot that turned up was all sorts of "You can do this! Put the pizza in the blender!" stuff... which I really can't stand for. What I really should have done instead, was to google something like "delicious soups and stews" and find recipes that made me feel hungry/happy. After all, at the end of the day, it's really for me to find something delicious that will motivate me to get calories in. Of course they'd plus points if they had really nutritious stuff in them.

On a side note, this is one of the most useful post-jaw surgery nutrition list, and another of her posts about nutrition for nerve regeneration that I've found. Thanks Wendy, I'm going to see what I can do with them.

These are some happy recipes that I've found so far that I hope to be able to get my househelper to try. Probably have to replace some ingredients (e.g. alcohol and stock), but I think they might work:

Here's the link for homemade chicken stock.

Homemade mushroom soup!
This evening, my sister and househelper helped with making some homemade mushroom soup for me. It was pretty thick, but after I trimmed the tubes on my syringes, I was so glad it could actually get in! I could only push out and swallow about 2mls at a time, but it's the most flavourful thing I've eaten for the past 10 days! The onion in it was a little spicy because my househelper forgot to carmelize the onions... BUT the soup contained cream and butter, garlic, onions, and fresh was so delicious! Calcium! Vitamins! Antioxidants! :D Anything homemade makes my day! I think I easily consumed over 150mls of this deliciousness! My caloric intake in this one meal probably superseded everything I have eaten for the past 3 days! Happy! :D

ALSO! I tried drinking water from a cup today! Achievement unlocked!
This is going to really up my water intake considerably! Seriously, drinking through a syringe is really tiring! It feels a little weird cause my lips (especially my bottom one) is still numb, but it works! No spillages. :) I don't know why a lot of past jaw surgery patients recommend putting towels under your chin and mentioning that there will be a lot of dribble in drinking from a cup, but I've found no problems so far...or maybe spillages happen if you try drinking from a cup much earlier post-surgery. But with a little patience and grace, it worked fine for me. At this stage, no one should be expecting any chugging anyway. :) I'm limiting drinking from a cup to water though. The last thing I want is the sugars in the milks or juices to get all over my barely brushable teeth. I am determined to not develop any cavities through this process!

Food Report

Carrot porridge - just couldn't get past 40mls.  :(
Ensure Chocolate Milk - I forced myself to consume this one and could only get up to 90mls. The last 10mls was so hard to go down.

About 80mls of prune juice. The first shot down my throat made me cough so much from the sudden acidity, I almost gave up drinking it altogether! Thank God for to-do lists that I have this thing about completing. Lesson learned: Always prep your throat with water before having prune juice, or anything with a higher acidity.

About/Over 150mls of Delicious homemade mushroom soup! <3
And perhaps another half a bottle of Yakult tonight.

"Plan for the day" Progress
  1. Research and decide on a daily light stretch/tone regime
  2. Drink milk and prune juice somewhere in the day
  3. Write important work letter
  4. Relook at graduate school essay submissions (maybe tomorrow)
  5. Organize work stuff on table 
  6. <maybe> Clear personal finance stuff
  7. <maybe> Finally finish the Day 1-2 post that is 70% done
  8. Respond to staff submissions on table (gonna finish this later tonight) :)
High point of the day
Getting some work done. Discovering info on the Paleo lifestyle. And the delicious mushroom soup!
Low point of the day
Sad carrot porridge at the start of the day, and lack of appetite. But that's all over now! :)

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