I’ve decided to take a hold of my health and get it under control. I’m 42 years old now, and unfortunately I’m feeling old and feel like I’m letting life slip away. After dieting for as long as I can remember, this past year I just felt as though this was me. I’m always going to have to fight my weight. The older I get, the heavier I will get. But, over the past few years I feel like I’ve lost the person I used to be. The person I want to be. At times I no longer felt the desire to ride my horse that I trained myself to run barrels. Sometimes I didn’t even want to go do things with our friends. As my weight would go up, then down some, then back up, I slowly quit taking my horse to competitions because I couldn’t shake the fact that I had been told I was too big for him. The past couple years I’ve just kind of floated through life. It wasn’t until bariatric surgery was brought to my attention that I felt that maybe I could reset my body, and hopefully, reset my life.
That is basically my story in a nutshell. Below are excerpts taken from my journal. To help explain why I’m going through the process of bariatric surgery. And hopefully, this will help someone else like me.
I’ve always enjoyed walking, swimming and riding horses. Definitely not something I ever want to stop doing. But, the past few years, my body don’t want to keep the weight off, all of that has now gotten harder to do. I remember the couple of times I had to have my son or husband come pick me up from walking down the road because I felt faint. I find my back becomes sore easier, I become red-faced, winded, ever more feeling like a heart attack waiting to happen. I want to exercise, but my body has a hard time allowing me to do it.
For me, through the years it’s the typical weight roller coaster, it doesn’t stay off and comes back with a vengeance. This past summer 2016, again, I figured, this is just me. It could always be worse.
However, after seeing pictures and having trouble riding my new horse. I find myself tired, in pain, frustrated, and at my wits end. Most importantly, I found myself unhealthy. I vowed I would not buy a new saddle, nor anymore big clothes! July, 2016 I heard of a couple people who had bariatric surgery. Wow, what a drastic thing to do! I never realized people actually did that. Curious as always, I began researching it. A lady that my sister knew who had it, was kind enough to allow me to ask questions. After all, my only knowledge of bariatric surgery is from watching, “My 600-pound life” on TV a couple years ago. So naturally I thought that was for people 300 pounds or more who are morbidly obese. Not for someone like me who is simply "obese" and could stand to lose at least 50 pounds. (Or so I thought, I now know I’m actually 90 pounds overweight). But the more I learned about it, the more I realized a lot has changed in medicine and the standards in BMI and bariatric surgery requirements. People my size are doing it to get control of their health. I learned that someone like me who qualifies with 35 or greater BMI, (I was 36 BMI the day I first went to my bariatric doctor), and with what they call, comorbid conditions, (which I have), can have the surgery to be healthy. Well, I thought, maybe I should look into this…
The “ideal weight for my height” is 120-140. Doesn’t seem possible to be that small now. I was in middle school the last time I weighed between those numbers! But after much thought and after talking to many specialists, I’ve decided that if approved and the door is opened, let’s do this! At first I thought, someone like me don’t need to go as far as surgery. When I hear women smaller than me complain about their weight, I just want to backslap their skinny faces into last week. So even though I'm "obese" and meet the requirements, being in a room-full at a bariatric seminar with most of the people well over 300 pounds, I felt like that annoying skinny person. It wasn’t until I met with the psychologist and dietician that I realized I’m not being selfish, that its ok to take control of my health.
I began the approval process in November, 2016 at my highest weight ever and started going to all the appointments with doctors and specialists. In the hopes of getting my health under control, to keep myself from getting worse. To get my blood pressure at a safe rate. After talking with the surgeon, he explained it's a disease, and told me how my body stores the fat when I try and exercise. Like it doesn't want to let it go. Maybe lose 10-15 lbs, but it always finds it way back as soon as it got the chance. And then some. He also said that statistically, when you're almost 100 lbs overweight, it's highly unlikely you're going to lose it all without the aid of surgery. Not to mention, I'm borderline diabetic, have high cholesterol, along with high blood pressure.
In April, 2017, I was approved by the doctors, as well as with my insurance, and was scheduled for sleeve gastrectomy surgery on May 31, 2017.
After beginning the pre-op appointments for approval, I started wrapping my mind around this new life. From November 1, 2016 to my two week pre-op liquid diet, I lost 11 pounds. I lost 12 pounds during the two week pre-op liquid diet.
No longer taking my blood pressure medicines or Metformin.
I made it to my goal at 9 months post op! Currently lost over 80 pounds and maintaining at a healthy weight!
Height: 5 feet 5 inches
Weight Lost: 83 lbs
Surgery: Gastric Sleeve
Surgery Status: Post Surgery
First Dr. Visit: 11/01/2016
Surgery Date: 05/31/2017
Hospital Stay: 2 Days
Surgery Funding: Insurance
Insurance Outcome: 1st Letter Approval
Okie75's Bariatric Surgeon
6465 S. Yale
Tulsa, Oklahoma 74136