Heather: Gastric Bypass Weight LossPosted: Apr 12 in Bariatric Surgery Testimonials by Staff
For Heather, gastric bypass surgery has been a life-changing journey, one that has helped her find new confidence and freedom from conditions like diabetes and sleep apnea. In the Q&A below, Heather shares her story and some valuable advice for anyone considering weight loss surgery.
What health problems health problems improved with your weight loss?
I had high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, needed 5 shots of insulin a day and still the numbers were out of control. I had sleep apnea, needed oxygen with 100 ft. of hose to get around and had constant joint pain even after bilateral knee replacement.
I was always short of breath, unable to walk even to the mailbox and had issues with bathing and hygiene. I had swollen legs and ankles so I was unable to wear my shoes quite often, and unable to have a scan or MRI at a hospital as I exceeded the weight limit of the machine. Having to get weighed in the basement laundry room on the scale they use to weigh the dirty linens—that feeling is worse than you could imagine. Never having any energy and the list goes on… I was a failure to me and everyone.
What is your biggest accomplishment since having surgery?
I have no need for more insulin or oxygen and am able to tie my own shoes and wear socks. I don’t worry about weight limit any longer—I can even go on a roller coaster now at Disney. Every part of my body is smaller—I have lost over 85 inches from around my body! I had to have my jewelry taken in twice already, my shoe size has changed by a whole size, I have no more leg and ankle swelling, no more seat belt extension needed, no more fear that a chair might not hold me. I feel like a new person and I don’t feel as if all eyes are upon me when I am out in public. I am now accepted by the general population. I like being ordinary for a change. I love NOT being different any longer.
What have you done to make your surgery a lifestyle and not another diet or a quick fix?
I was well-read on the gastric bypass before the surgery and read 12 books on the subject. I knew it would be life-changing and at the point I was at, my options were limited if I wanted to live a long life. I was newly married and the thought of dying before my time and leaving my husband behind was too overwhelming to even think about. I wanted to live for the first time in my life. My excess weight was killing me and this was my last chance to take control of my life.
I follow all that I was taught to do to achieve positive results and I have been and will continue to be proactive with my goal of getting healthy and looking my best. Exercise is now a daily pleasure. This weight did not happen overnight. I have struggled with obesity my entire life and I do not expect it to disappear overnight either. This is a complete life change and the old way of life for me is in my past. The new me is determined to succeed with this venture and I expect in time my success will inspire others to not give up. Anything is possible if you have the determination to go all the way. Nothing tastes as good as healthy feels.
What is your advice to someone looking into weight loss surgery?
Read as much as you can before you decide. There is no turning back. You owe it to yourself to make the decision that will change anyone’s life for the better. The feeling of accomplishment only gets better with every pound you lose. As soon as you decide to have the surgery, whatever method you choose, start your new way of eating that very day to give yourself a head start. I did and it made a huge difference. I was prepared and I know that the head start gave me the boost I needed.
There is no turning back for me. Why not attend Marisa’s blenderology support group before you decide to see what to expect? Also attend the support group with Sharon and you will see living proof from Sharon and other members that this method works and it will change your life as you know it. Stay tuned to see my progression. I will get there with time and support and my new way of thinking. Anything is possible if you want it bad enough.
How has losing weight affected your life?
I thought I was happy before but now I know the difference. I was missing the feeling of being proud of myself as no matter how good things may have been, I was still obese and felt like a failure to myself and anyone who even looked at me. This journey has only begun for me. I still have a long way to go and the next 100 pounds will be a challenge but I have no doubts that I will achieve all my goals. Better late than never!
Do you have any kind words for Dr. Bass and the GCB staff?
Dr. Bass and all the staff are now considered my new family. Everyone is so understanding and encouraging that it makes me want to be a model patient for all of them. I am proud to say that I am a success story for gastric bypass and it was the best thing I have ever done for myself. Everyone is the office knows I will be successful at this, and with all that confidence how can I fail?
I know if I need a pep talk, you’re all only a phone call away.
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