Salmonella Saved my Weigh In

You might think I’m being humorous, but trust me… I am completely serious.  Last Monday I’d just barely met my 1 pound weight loss goal.  My week went downhill from there.  I am having a very hard time finding a balance between eating enough calories for breastfeeding so I’m not starving all the time and not eating so much that I gain weight.  This mission was an EPIC FAIL by mid-week.  I didn’t think I was eating *that* horribly (especially with having my green drinks for breakfasts) but inexplicably I’d gone up 5 lbs by Thursday!  What???  I haven’t seen that quickly a weight gain in YEARS!

I didn’t know what was going on and I had already started formulating a blog about it in my head to announce that I probably wouldn’t meet my ’52 lbs to lose in 52 weeks’ goal for this week.  But alas, motherhood took up the majority of my time and energy and there was no blog time available for me.

My almost 7 week old went on a growth spurt.  For my baby this meant having a day of hardly anything but sleeping and then unfortunately having a day where she barely sleeps and eats all day (and repeat).
Like an idiot, that first day when she was sleeping all the time I decided to be productive around the house – cleaning up, dishes, laundry, etc.  So when she sprung the ‘up all day & night long’ phase on me, I was NOT prepared sleepwise.
She went over 33 hours with never napping for more than 3 consecutive hours!  Of which I barely enjoyed 2 hours of sleep each time.  That is sheer torture, let me tell you – especially when I’d only gotten 3 hours disjointed sleep leading up to that day.

It hit me on Friday that I might have an explanation (or at least a partial one) for the weight gain:  I simply do not get enough reparative sleep to lose weight effectively.
How many times have I seen it mentioned on Dr. Oz or even some of those commercial weight loss plans that getting adequate sleep is crucial to weight loss?  Tons.  And sleep is in short supply for me these days.  And they don’t call it “beauty rest” for nothing… my poor skin/face has been paying the price as well (insert clip of Jamie Lee Curtis in ‘Freaky Friday’ looking at herself in the mirror saying “I look like the Crypt Keeper!”)

So I’d added on to my mentally prepared blog once more with this theory and because there was no time Friday morning, I weighed myself Friday evening just to see where my weight was… oy, not good.  Granted it was at night after a day of eating, but I’d tried to cut back a little all day Thursday and Friday just to see if I could repair a little damage.

This is when everything went downhill.  Just before midnight (and trying to get my baby girl to sleep) I start getting stomach cramps and intestinal discomfort.  I was breastfeeding and having a hell of a time with it as she was fighting my breast (wanting it, pushing it away, wanting it, pushing it away…) and I’d never seen her act like that.  Apparently she knew I was getting sick (babies can sense that) or there was something funky in my milk due to what I’d eaten (the jury is still out on that).  Either way, she was getting fussier by the minute and very demanding of me physically.
My pain and discomfort grew and grew.  I actually had to hold my baby girl as I went to the bathroom because she wasn’t ready to be put down at the time and I HAD TO GO!  Thankfully I have a Bumbo seat in there for such emergencies so I can put her down in a safe place for a few seconds to take care of business.

My conditioned worsened as the minutes went by.  It was now 1:15am and I’d gotten to the stage of rocking my infant in the Lazy Boy in hopes to have her drift off to sleep.  By 1:30am she HAD to be asleep because although the pain/discomfort/bubbling/queasiness had remained lower in my body, I suddenly felt it coming north… ought oh.

I literally just had enough time to transfer my sleeping baby into her swing and run to the bathroom to throw up.  I did make it though… just barely!
I’d just finished up and rinsed my mouth and sat on the couch when “wah!” – baby is awake again.  Rought-roh… momma needs help.  No way could I physically handle the holding, rocking, patting, etc. she was in need of, so I grabbed the baby and went upstairs to wake up hubby.  Thank goodness it was a Friday night so he didn’t have work to contend with the next day.
I basically went upstairs, quickly explained my situation, handed her to him and ran back downstairs to the bathroom.
I proceeded to have one hell of a nasty night.  I’ve had salmonella poisoning before which is why I believe this is what I was suffering from, but there were some differences this time.   Usually after you’ve finished hurling everything that was left in your stomach, that’s it… party is over.  Nope, not this time.

TMI WARNING:  if you are squeamish, go down to the next paragraph………ok, that was your last and only warning… here goes:  After I thought everything was out of my stomach, just about once an hour (or less time) I would heave and barely anything would come out except what I can only describe as just a little liquid and bile.  How am I familiar with what bile tastes like?  Well, when I had my gallbladder removed almost 9 years ago, I hadn’t eaten any food in about 7 days.  My system was as empty as one could possibly be with only an IV keeping me alive because I couldn’t even drink water.  After my surgery (after ANY surgery in my life) I always throw up at least once because of the anesthesia after the first time I attempt to drink water in recovery.  Well, seeming I had NOTHING in me, all there was to come up with what little water I drank was bile.  OMG friggin nastiest shit ever!  Worse that having to vomit the most acidic thing you can think of eating.  So yes, I know what bile tastes like and I was heaving it in the wee hours of Saturday morning.

It occurred to me that because I wasn’t able to drink anything during this time (and I was EXTREMELY thirsty, but I knew better than to attempt to drink even water!), I was probably reabsorbing my breast milk as a self-preservation response and perhaps that’s a reason I kept having to vomit for way longer than expected.
Even my hubby was like “how do you have anything left in there?”  Ugh.

So during my ordeal, my baby girl had one of her own.  She was acting like she was intestinal distress like she had the worst gas of her life.  This is where my salmonella theory goes out the window…  if a mother has salmonella poisoning, she can’t pass it to baby via breast milk… in fact, continuing to breast feed is beneficial (but who can do that when my milk is drying up and I’m heaving or on the toilet for other reasons?!?!).  Then I thought maybe however I contracted it (because hubby & son were perfectly healthy) maybe I passed a little on to her maybe via her binky I touch frequently.  Babies don’t really “throw up”, they spit up so maybe it affected her all in her intestines?  Regardless, my poor baby girl!
My hubby was getting so frustrated because nothing he was doing for her seemed to help (very colic-esque) plus he’s not used to being the one staying up all night with her… I am.  Finally at around 4:30am she calmed and was well enough to go to sleep.  I suppose she could have just been upset because of irritation of something via my breast milk earlier (after which hubby switched to formula) and then it became a case of overtiredness, so she was fighting her daddy.
I, on the other hand, could not manage even a nap between my bathroom trips because I was so dehydrated, my legs were starting to ache.  I have issues with my legs anyway (especially my right leg – it has a tendency to ache easily and could be brought on by not enough rest, overuse, underuse or you guessed it, dehydration).  The pain was so bad in both legs that I couldn’t sleep through it.

I gave up trying at 7:30am and went downstairs to attempt to give myself more comfort on the couch by putting several pillows under my legs and trying to prop them above the height of my heart.  This helped a little, though not enough for me to drift off to get some sleep.
Before I knew it, 2 hours had gone by and hey, no vomiting!  Yay!  Time for some ice chips because I was so beyond thirsty and dehydrated I just can’t tell you!
After an hour and a half of eating ice chips with no nasty consequences, I finally moved on to drinking water for real.  It was all I could do not to down my entire 24 oz cup!
Another hour of just sips and everything seemed ok, so I could finally drink even more.

At this point I decided to weigh myself for shits and giggles.  In a span of about 12 hours I’d lost 11 lbs!!!  Even for food poisoning, that’s extreme!  I can only explain that the weight of my boobs/breast milk probably upped that variant more than a non-breastfeeding body would have.
And you know what my thought was when I saw how low my number went?  “Well, maybe I will meet my weigh in goal this Monday.”
Yep, I’m sick and twisted.  Technically I was under that goal by a few pounds, but I knew I was due for a rebound as I drank and started to eat more and my body (and breasts) rehydrated.

Since then I’ve been keeping my food rather bland/safe (saltines, applesauce, toast, Jell-O, etc.)

And there it was this morning… my weigh up, but .6 of a lb under my weight goal for this morning.  Just made it!
I’m not even entirely well yet.  Let me give you this analogy:  say you turn the water off in a house and the pipes sit empty for a bit.  What happens when you turn the water back on?  Yep, there is air in the line and the faucet spits and sputters until the pipes fill up again.
Well, my intestinal track is like those water pipes right now.  The “water” is back on, but not all the air has left the pipes yet.  It’s lovely, I assure you.  Also I’m still not processing what food I’ve eaten so far correctly yet… not sure what’s up with that (again, not like my former salmonella experience).

So unfortunately will probably have even more pounds creep back up as I start to eat more food and things “down below” settle down and get back to how they should be.  This may make next week’s weigh in a challenge, but I’ll stay positive.

My food poisoning was kind of a blessing in disguise.  Not only did I shed some pounds that had inexplicably crept up, but I got to essentially reboot my system (kind of needed after all the food crap I ingested over the holidays).  Now I’m more apt to only want to let the good/better food choices into my body and not cloud it up with the junk.  It was like having a really nasty cleanse (yeah, I don’t recommend this method).  Also because my body was completely empty and I’m getting to start from scratch, I can more accurately test possible food allergies my baby might have via my breast milk (like from me drinking cow’s milk).

Who would have ever thought there was a silver lining to food poisoning?!?


About gwenacious

Always a person in progress. On a mission of self-improvement and exploring my artistic side.
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One Response to Salmonella Saved my Weigh In

  1. tlf says:

    you poor thing! Nothing sucks more than having a vomitty illness when you have so much to take care of.

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