Shelly: Gastric Bypass Weight Loss

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Lost 197 pounds with gastric bypass

Hello. My name is Shelly and I am writing this testimonial to share with you the story of my lifelong journey with obesity. I am 52 years old and I have struggled for most of my life with being overweight.

When I was in 4th grade I remember my pediatrician telling my mother that I needed to lose weight because I was too old for baby fat! By the time I was in 6th grade I had gotten taller and I was normally weighted from that time until I got married at the age of 19. I weighed 132 pounds and wore a size 11 pants when I got married.

Soon after I married I became pregnant with my first child. I had 3 children and I gained more than 100 pounds every time I became pregnant. I tried to lose weight between all of my pregnancies by going to Weight Watchers, eating one meal a day, going on a liquid diet and the Adkins diet. I had some success with most diets but I always gained the weight back because I dealt with all of my feelings by eating and because I simply loved to eat!

I continued to eat until I got to the place that I weighed 350 pounds! I knew that I had a serious problem but I continued to eat as food had become the love of my life and the thing that I focused most on. Food was truly the first priority of my life. I was addicted to food in the same way an alcoholic is addicted to alcohol. For me life was not worth living unless I could eat whatever I wanted to eat. This also included eating whenever I wanted to and eating any amount of food that I desired.

My daughter began to talk to me about having gastric bypass surgery. She told me that she wanted me to be alive when she had children and that she wanted me to be able to play with my grandchildren, not just sit and hold them in a rocking chair. My mother was also very vocal about my weight problem.

I began to research the gastric bypass surgery, but I was always afraid of surgery and did not like being put to sleep. I knew the risks that were involved and it really scared me. I felt that I was prepared to die, but I did not want to die due to having elective surgery. When I shared my thoughts with my daughter she told me that if I continued to eat I would die very soon anyway so what did I have to lose? I knew that she was right.

I began to try to locate a doctor that I trusted. I heard about Dr. Bass through a dietician at work. She had met Dr. Bass and had heard really good things about him and his program. I called his office and spoke to Tiffany, his wife. She was very kind and understanding and she took time to answer all of my questions.

I decided that I would go for an initial consultation with Dr. Bass and attend the mandatory meeting where the doctors talk to potential patients. After the meeting I felt that I needed to have this surgery to save my life. I knew that I would have to be truly committed to this entire process as I live in Okeechobee Florida and Dr. Bass’s office is in Hollywood. I was so concerned about having this surgery that I ran a check on Dr. Bass on the internet. At my first appointment with the Dr. I shared this with him. He laughed and asked me what I found. I told him that he did not have any negative remarks on his profile and that he had completed over 300 gastric bypasses and not lost one patient. I was impressed and trusted this surgeon not only because of my research but because of my visits with the doctor and his staff.

I stared going through all of the necessary steps and going to the group sessions to talk about the things that I would need to do prior to the surgery, after the surgery and for the rest of my life. The process was very time consuming, but I never got frustrated because I was so excited about finally having a tool that would help me lose my weight and help me maintain my new healthy weight.

I was finally scheduled for my surgery and I was still very nervous about being put to sleep. I am always concerned that I may not wake up. I told everyone that I was either going to get thin or go to heaven and that either way I was going to win.

The surgery went well and I was up and about quicker than I had anticipated. I was walking on the 2nd day, went home on day 3 and felt pretty good after one week. Within a few days I was able to stop all of my medications that I had previously taken. I no longer take medication for diabetes, high blood pressure, reflux disease and I no longer have sleep apnea. My feet no longer swell and my knees no longer hurt.

The decision to have this surgery is the very best decision that I have ever made. I had a permanent problem that needed a permant solution. This surgery has proved to be the permanent solution that I needed. It has literally saved my life and given me back my life! I know without a doubt that if I had not had this surgery I would have eaten myself to death. It is horrible to admit that I was that out of control but that is the truth.

I had been so heavy for so long that I had no idea how my weight had taken over my life and robbed me of having any quality of life. Prior to my surgery my life consisted of was eating, sleeping and trying to struggle through each work day. Now I follow my eating plan and exercise at least 30 minutes everyday. Some days I exercise for an hour. I feel so strong and healthy and my husband and I go out dancing almost every week end sometimes every Friday and Saturday night!

I feel such gratitude towards Dr. Bass, his wife Tiffany and the office staff for helping me to accomplish my goals. I am 2 and a half years post surgery. I now weigh 152.5 and have lost 197.5 pounds. I have gone from wearing a size 34 pants to wearing sizes 6-8. That is 14 sizes! I still have to think about my eating and my exercise every day. I will have to do this for the rest of my life as I do not want to gain my weight back. I had the surgery to get my health back but I do look better physically as well. Looking better is a side effect of the surgery.

If you are tired and frustrated with your love affair and your battle with food I strongly encourage you to consider bariatric surgery. The surgery is a tool to help you accomplish your goals. If you follow the program guidelines you will be successful. You will feel so good, look great and be healthier and stronger than you have been for years. I hope that you will think seriously about your eating problem and that you will come to a good decision about the steps that you need to take to turn your problem around. I once heard a quote that stated “You don’t have a problem; you have a decision to make”. I hope that my story will help you make the right decision for your life.