Are you curious? Happy for me? Judging? Before you make that decision, learn why I chose to have the gastric sleeve, and learn why weight loss surgery is more common than you think. In the past few years, I lost nearly entire family. My brother, Mom, Dad, both sets of grandparents, my aunt, and my best friend all passed away. I was a caretaker to my parents who both died young. I knew I needed to make a change because I didn’t want to die young, but I was on the path to do just that.
Why I Chose Weight Loss Surgery
Obesity runs in my family, and while taking care of family, I stopped taking care of myself. I was a VP of a Fortune 500 company, a caretaker, the money maker, and a newlywed. For five years I watched loved one after loved one die. I gained 70lbs over the five years and I was heavy to begin with. I’d diet and then gain that weight back and more. When my Dad passed, I knew I needed to make a change.
I spent 18 months looking into my options, working with a dietitian, and giving so much blood for testing. I learned I was insulin resistant, pre-diabetic, had Sleep Apnea, Hidradenitis Suppurativa, Pernicious Anemia, Hashimoto’s, Polycystic Ovary Syndrome, and autoimmune gastritis. There’s more, but at this point, it looks like I’m bragging.
Two years into my marriage and we wanted to start our lives and have children. My body wasn’t in a healthy place to get pregnant and PCOS wasn’t going to make it easy. I needed to change. I heavily researched the gastric sleeve for my dad, when it dawned on me that I qualified for it too.
Well, the diets weren’t working and I felt like a failure. I saw dieticians, Weight Loss Doctors, and gurus. I was put on Qsymia and Contrave, weight-loss meds, which helped, but as soon as I stopped, I gained the weight back instantly. The side effects were also terrifying.
One doctor put me on an 800 calorie diet and exercising like crazy, which was stupid because I was getting dizzy and sick. Over the past 15 years I’ve done: Weight Watchers, South Beach, Atkins, Paleo, AIP, Blood Type Diet, Dash Diet, and probably a few others I’ve blocked from memory.
I later found out that Insulin resistance and PCOS makes it difficult to lose weight and I wasn’t necessarily failing; However, I didn’t have the proper tools.
When I got Serious
I take full responsibility for the weight I gained. My 5’4” frame ballooned up to 259 lbs. at my heaviest and a BMI of 44%. I needed desperately to get my shit together so that I don’t die prematurely as well. Cancer runs in my family and getting to a healthy body weight would definitely help my chances of not getting the Big C. In fact, most of the autoimmune issues I have would get better with weight loss.
What’s sad is it took me a long time to figure out I was that big. I carried the weight well so I felt I looked decent in a mirror and my husband loved me unconditionally.
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But looking back It was a few things that made me realize it was time to make a change. I was playing on the floor with my god baby and I was so out of breath and getting up was more difficult than it should have been.
At my Father’s funeral, an old family friend rubbed my stomach and asked my due date… I wasn’t pregnant and I had Spanx on, not to mention being a mess because I just lost my Dad.
But the day I knew I had to get it together was at a friend’s baby shower in 2019. I arrived and a 3-year-old ran up and rubbed my belly, she thought I was the Mom-to-Be. OMG, I was mortified, but to be honest I’m so thankful for that kid because I finally decided that I have no option but to lose weight.
How Common is Weight Loss Surgery
Being a year post-op, it’s pretty obvious to me when someone has had weight loss surgery. Like me, I chose to only tell a handful of people, why? People are super rude, that’s why. And unlike other health issues, people feel the need to give you unsolicited advice on a subject they know nothing about. So to save myself a little trouble, I only told those whom I trust the most.
Some people think weight loss surgery is the easy way out, and it’s just something you can get done on a Wednesday afternoon. It’s not, years of doctors’ records, blood work, weight records, and comorbidities have to be proven to even start the process.
I can speculate on the Hollywood actors who’ve had the procedure done, but if they don’t want there business on the street I’m not going to speculate.
According to the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery approximately 228,000 bariatric procedures were performed in the United States in 2017. Chances are you know someone who has gotten the procedure.
Where did I start?
I met with 2 highly recommended bariatric surgeons. Both had exceptional reviews online, and one came highly recommended from a friend who got weight loss surgery.
Check out what to expect during the approval process.
I decided to begin the process of getting the Gastric Sleeve, which is the hardest thing I’ve ever done. The process was long and a lot of work just to qualify for the surgery, it wasn’t a quick fix. Bariatric Surgery empowered me and gave me my health back and a second chance in life.
I love your blog!!! Reading this was as if I was talking out loud and sharing my story. I am slated for gastric sleeve in May. I’m older than you but as you shared, it’s never too late to take your life back. Thank you so for sharing your journey. It’s such a relief to read!!
Good Luck in May, I’m so happy for you,