Updated 10/25, 2017: Sadly, after 2 years of being on medication due to some health complications (not related to my band) I have re-gained 65 lbs of the 100 lbs I lost. Regardless of whatever excuses I have of regaining my weight loss, I am now in a position that my insurance has a WLS exclusion. So, that means they approved to put the band in me 6 years ago, but now that I'm having problems with the band (pain at the port) they won't pay to revise to a sleeve. I'm super frustrated. I have an appointment to see my wonderful doc in 10 days, at which time I'm afraid he's going to tell me the cost to revise will be over $10k, which I definitely don't have. I started researching docs in Mexico, which are must cheaper, but that definitely makes me nervous. Fingers crossed for some miraculous good news at my appointment.
I am VERY happily married to my best friend and mother of 2 girls.
I gained weight with my two pregnancies and continued to gain as life became stressful and I used food to comfort myself. I work from home so I have the ability to snack all day and night…..and I did, eating all day! Living with my family who have metabolisms like humming birds and can eat anything they want and as much as they want, was not good for any failing diet I had previously tried. I would diet and exercise, fail at it, losing only 2-5 pounds over a couple months, this would depress me, and me being a “depressive eater”, I would eat more and gain more weight. This was a vicious cycle for me for years. I was so frustrated with the failed diets and frustrated with exercising hard and not seeing results. In September 2011, my oldest daughter was in her senior year of high school and I was making her a yearbook page & looking through years of pictures to reflect her 18 years of life. I looked and looked for a picture of her and I and couldn’t find any. For many years I hid from cameras and always made sure I was the one taking the pictures so I didn’t have to be in them. I was saddened by the fact that I was celebrating her life with pictures and there would be no pictures of me with her. In addition to the depressing lack of pictures I had of me with my children over the years, I also noticed my tendency to avoid mirrors. Even looking at my face made me cry. Getting out of the shower (with a big mirror facing the shower) literally brought me to tears everyday. My husband and kids loved me the way I was & were never embarrassed by me. My husband was affectionate in public & walking hand in hand with him made me very self-conscious. I felt like everyone was looking at us like "why is he with her" or "they definitely don't look like they belong together". I always felt so uncomfortable at my daughters' school events or sporting events....they were never embarrassed but I was embarrassed for them. I did not feel like I fit in with my family...they were all thin with athletic bodies, always active & I definitely was NOT active & couldn't even think of doing activities with them like working out at the gym (the way they did), skateboarding, surfing, etc and I certainly was NOT thin or athletic-looking like them. It made me so depressed to feel like I didn't fit in with my family. I knew I could do it if I just had something to help me. If the scale would just move in the right direction, I knew that would be enough to keep me motivated. I knew I had to do something for myself….for my life….for my health….for my happiness. I received a letter from my insurance stating we had met our family deductible & would have no further out of pocket costs for the year. It was then I decided to start researching & after researching the different bariatric surgeries, I opted for the Lap-Band, because I knew with as young as I am whatever I decided need to be for life...I needed a lifestyle change.
At 246 pounds, I was banded November 3, 2011, and that was the best decision I have ever made for myself!!! I immediately began making changes in my lifestyle, making better food choices and being very conscious of portion control. The scale started slowly moving in the right direction and once I was cleared to exercise after surgery, I started hitting the gym as a last hoorah to make this work. I knew I was going to make this work….I just wasn’t aware when I chose the band, how easy it was going to be!! The pounds started coming off and with each pound lost, the more motivation I got to make better food choices and stay faithful to going to the gym. I have lost 90 pounds in 17 months!!!
In December 2012, I had a TT & breast reduction/lift. At that time, I had lost 75+ pounds and had only gone down (barely) 2 pant sizes prior to the TT due to the HUGE roll/overhang of skin & fat that was just not going away no matter what I did (not to mention the F size bra cup I had). That was VERY discouraging and depressing and made me just want to eat more again. I am so happy I went through with it. The recovery was MUCH longer than I expected, but it was not as painful as I expected. Since my TT I have lost 15 pounds & only have 10 pounds to go until my goal weight. I have gone down 4 pant sizes (from 16 to 8) since my TT & a total of 6 pant sizes since being banded.
For the first time in 19 years, I feel like I fit in with my skinny athletic family....both the way I look & my physical activity level. I walk confidently with my daughter & I walk with a smile holding my husband's hand in public. I can be active with them including working out at the gym WITH them, I've been skateboarding with my daughter & I plan to try surfing this summer!! I am so happy with my life!!! I knew I was miserable & I knew losing weight would help me be healthier and happier, but I never dreamed I could be THIS happy with myself! I NEVER dreamed I would be sharing clothes with my teenage daughters!!! The Lap-Band changed my life....not only my physical health but my mental health as well.