I am 47 years old and weigh 356. And that my friends is the very first time I've ever told the truth about that in black and white.(the weight part not the age part LOL). My BMI started out in the 58s. I am oxygen dependant.
I will be putting the current updates on the top of my profile from this point on!
June 13 2005
Sicker than a dog right now. Got a cold in my nose. Man I hope I get better before the big weekend in Orlando. Really looking forward to the event. I went to the one in Atlanta and had a wonderful time. Met lots of great people. I'm sure this one will be great too. Plus it's in my old stomping grounds so I won't be lost everywhere I go like I was in Atlanta. I lived in Kissimmee (right out side Orlando) for years.
My wonderful friend Angel let me go to her plastic's consult the other day and boy, She was brave to do that. But I truly thank her from the bottom of my heart because I found it to be a great help to me as I start contemplating plastic's for myself. She has made the next step in my journey a little easier. Plastic's is still a little up in the air for me at this time. Oh yeah, I want some just have not decided what yet. Okay my decongestant has kicked in and I can actually breathe with both nostrils so I'm going to lay down till it plugs back up. Later.................................Betsy
May 26 2005
Well, Today is my 27th wedding anniversary. Can you image 27 years. Long time. LOL The scale is moving now at a snail's pace but my life is sooooo different. Someone ask me not long ago if I would be happy if I didn't lose another pound. I really had to think about that for awhile and the answer is YES. I have not lost all the weight I dream of losing but I can't deny the benefits I've received with this surgery. The support group seems to going very well. It has become a mainstay in my life. I am struggling a bit with food now. I can eat almost anything and like others I fear the amounts that I can eat now. Just more head games that I will need to find a new way around. At least at this point I am able to see why I'm eating and that is a big part of this battle. That's all for now.....................Betsy
Well, A new year. It seems like just yesterday but, I've been going to support group meetings since 2003, had my surgery in 2004, now 2005 wonder what this year has in store for me????? I am down 130 pounds and lots of sizes now. My life is a new and improved one in some areas but, at the same time my husbands health is going in the other direction. It is so confusing, happy for myself and deeply sadden for my husband and our relationship. Some days it just seems so unfair. Makes me really regret all the time I spent obese, sick and miserable while he was holding things together. Ahhhh this must be one of those days...........I read back over what I just wrote and my first impulse was to delete it. I'm letting it be because I'm trying to deal with things differently these days. Boy, I hope this is the hard part of this journey because I'm feeling a little used up. Tomorrow will be a better day!!!!!!! Hopefully a different frame of mind.
01/30/2005 Tomorrow is a better day.....................It is a hard thing for me to post this but, it is better out than in. So against my better judgment there it is. As Debbie, Annette and I have talked about many times the mental part of this surgery is not an easy thing! Okay, Let me tell you all about my first real clothes shopping trip. I was headed to Atlanta for the OH convention and wanted some good fitting clothes to wear. I find myself in the same clothes stores that I always go to ( you guys know the ones where our sizes are always in the back or the whole store is just for us pleasantly plump gals). Well, I got a bunch of clothes in a variety of sizes and headed for the dressing room. I start trying things on ( by the way did I mention that this has never been a favorite pastime of mine) and to my surprise EVERYTHING fits!!!!!!!!! Even the "hope they will fit clothes that I had picked up you know, the sizes that I thought yeah right cold day in oh you know" I stood there looking at myself in the mirror and laughing and crying at the same time. So you would think that I spent allot of money that day, huh. NOPE, was so confused by the fact that for the first time in a long time I actually had to choose what looked good instead of just taking whatever fit. I picked everything up put it back and went running out of the store. Scared myself. LOL I did go back later and bought a orange bra. Can you image ORANGE. I have a new bad addiction to under garments that are all the colors of the rainbow. Gee wonder why, Could it be that after you get a certain size you can't find colors at all, you count yourself lucky to get a black or beige one. NO MORE BEIGE FOR ME!!!!!!! Speaking of underwear. You know my jeans have been getting smaller and smaller ( from size 32 to 16 now) Any way the smaller my jeans got the more uncomfortable I became and was beginning to wonder if maybe I was feeling my age and was trying to wear my jeans to tight. Didn't seem right though because the waist fit fine. Well, In my quest for rainbow colored undies I bought some that were 5 sizes smaller than I have been wearing all this time. I wasn't kidding when I told people the only thing holding my panties up was my jeans!!!!!! So now I have undies that actually stay up by them selves, and guess what, I'm very comfortable in my jeans now. HAD MY PANTIES IN A WAD !!!!!!!!!!! Live and learn. That's all for now.........................................
Today I have made it to 100 pounds lost. I am beside myself with emotions. I will be 6 months out on the 22nd. I can't begin to tell you all the ways my life has become better. I have been struggling with some emotional issues that have nothing to do with the surgery. But I have found out that everything is related to this surgery as I can no longer deal with things as I once did. So I'm am finding other ways to deal with stress, boredom and every other emotion that I used to eat my way thru. Don't know if I'm very good at this yet but I'm learning. I still feel very blessed with this surgery. I surely have had fewer problems than some of my peers. The support group is a very important tool for me. At times I wish that I could reach out to more people that are dealing with the effects of their weight on their lives. I see what this surgery has done for me and others and would love to be able to help others.
I have been remiss in updating my profile and will try to do better.
Till next time take care all.............................Betsy
Well, I feel better now that I finished my surgery story!!!!! So now I'm almost 4 months out and have lost almost 80 pounds!!!!! I've been off diabetic meds since surgery and have now had two A1C's done. One was 5.6 and yesterday's was 5.5 which as all you diabetic's know is NON-diabetic. Also yesterday my PCP took me off all high blood pressure meds. I had been cut down to just one from three now, NONE, NADA, NO MORE, NOT ONE PILL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Can you tell how I feel about that!????? The Doc was very pleased with my progress!!! It has been a long time since I walked out of a doctors office smiling (more broke But, happy). I have an appointment with Dr. H on the 15th so will see what he has to say. Will also get my blood work back! I am losing alot of hair, but I have a lot of it, so am not worried about that yet.
I have been pulling out clothes from the depths of my closet and the bottom drawers of my dresser. Gone down about 2 sizes already and it has been the most amazing thing!! I will have to start thinking about getting clothes sooner than I imagined. It's all good!!
I've been wanting to start water aerobics but, I am worried that the heat, water, and humidity will make it hard for my old damaged lungs. I've pretty much decided that I'm just going to do it and see what happens!!!!!!
I have been truly blessed with this process. So far I have had NO problems. I have done things that I would not have attempted for the last few years. I can go farther, faster and better than I have in a long time. If I had to come up with 3 things that is essential to this process it would be 1. Attitude, You really need a new mind set to be really successful. 2. Support groups, They are necessary for accountability and gosh, who wants to do this all alone!!!!!! Husbands and family help but, having other people that are going thru the same things you're dealing with.....PRICELESS
3. Protein drinks, I can tell the difference between when I use them and when I don't. Just feel better and have more energy and I believe that they help alot with the pounds coming off.
Well, enough for now. Take care...............
Betsy- Living LARGE not getting large!!!!!
04/01/04 Well April Fools Day. I never cared for all the "jokes" that people seem so excited about for April 1st. oh well to each their own. I had my surgery on March 22nd 2004 and much to my surprise I did very well. I went into this feeling that I was kind of behind the eight ball. With my breathing problems and other illness the surgery concerned me more than anything else. I had the fear of waking up on a ventilator and staying on it for a long time. Been there, Done that, and learned everything I need to know about that for the rest of my life. Not even a t-shirt or a hat with that one. So now I begin the rest of my life. I'm dancing a jig.(a slow easy one but a jig all the same)
I spent alot of time on breathing treatments and that blasted incentive spirometer for 2 weeks before surgery. Can't say I walked as much as I wanted as I was unable to walk more than about 25 yards without stopping to suck air and calm my racing heart. I did all the last meals I could think of. Spent alot of money saying GOODBYE to McDonalds, Burger King, Bennigan's, Long John Silvers and KFC etc.... (too many to mention)
Then it was the morning of the 22nd it was here to fast and had taken an eternity to get here (I know but that's how it felt). Calvin (husband), Zach (son), Marilee (daughter), Dad, Donna (sister) and Christy (Zach's girlfriend and good friend) went to the hospital with me. The nurse came out and got me took me back to the prep area. I put my lovely gown and socks on she stuck me for the I.V. and then my family got to come back to see me. Then the sleepy guy came by to ask questions than Dr. H came with a thumps up and then I had a breathing treatment(again). Off to the operating room I rolled. (Sorry Tracy I Rode) I slid over from grunny to table with their help and they put rolled towels under my legs(as I had asked them to do) They were all running around with mask on so I didn't know who was who and I heard someone counting over in the corner I'm laying there thinking that I hope they have the same number going in as they do after. Sure wouldn't want anything left some place unexpected LOL. The sleepy guy puts a mask over my face and says Breath Deeeeeeeeeeeeeee That's what I heard anyway!!!!!
Well that's enough for now more later.....................................Betsy
I'm back......I've been lax about updating and will try to do better!!!!! Anyway back to the story of surgery day.......... I woke up in recovery with a nurse sitting beside me. My hand went immediately to my mouth to see if there was a breathing tube (worst fear) Lo and behold there was nothing up a pair of chapped lips!!!!!!! Paint me happy!!! The sleepy guy doctor came and said "Sorry about waiting till you were awake to take out the breathing tube but, we wanted to make sure you would not need it" LOL I told him that it was alright. Actually I never knew, guess I wasn't as awake as he thought. Only spent about 45 minutes in recovery they had to tell me that, cause I was snoozing. I remember the ride to my room and the first thing I ask for was my husband and there he was! Don't tell him but, it was more than wonderful to see him. He is the best, again don't tell him that his head will blow up!
So now I'm in my room (1605) and all my folks come to see me. I am laughing and having a great time as long as no one touches MY BUTTON. What a great button it was. Instant attitude adjustment. When everyone finally gets finished telling me how surprised they are that I'm not in ICU (including my doctors) and leaves I take a good look at what them doc's had done while I was out of it and at their mercy!!! My incision is about 12 inches long (everyone is different) starting between my breast (about a 1/2 inch above bra line) ending about an inch above my belly button. No staples. I was glued, which seemed to really amuse me. There was a JP drain coming out of the high left side, which I didn't find amusing. Any way, I was up walking that night. The next day I went visiting my fellow surgery buddies. I had surgery on Monday and released on Wednesday afternoon. All in all the hospital was not too bad. They had a shortage of help and at times it was hard to get them to listen to you. I would recommend having someone with you. Gee, now I'm back to that wonderful husband thing. Gosh I hope he doesn't sneak in here and read all this!!!!!!! Never be able to live with him again if he hears all this stuff!!!!! All kidding aside, I have been very blessed to have such a wonderful caring and loving man by my side. You really have to KNOW they love you when they will wipe your butt or anything else that needs wiping!!!! I'm sure I would not have done as well with this surgery if not for him. Enough of that!!!!!!!
So that was my surgery!!!!
When I got home I took it easy for about 3 weeks (doing only what was needed). Food was very unappealing to me. I ate because I knew I had to. Slept in my recliner for about 1 week. They took the drain out at 1 week. I had lost 17 pounds. Paint me very happy!!!!
I've had to deal with issues with food, protein drinks and getting up off my butt just like everyone else. To the people that say this is the easy way out I say stick a cork in it!!!!!!!! Some things have been easy to deal with and others have been some of the hardest things I've done in life. This surgery should not be gone into lightly!!!! It is a very hard invasive surgery and it is very life-altering which, is very often extremely emotional and painful. It forces you to make choices that other people would never think about. It allows you to retrain your body and MIND (that's the hard one) to make better choices.
EVERYTHING FROM HERE IS FROM WHEN I FIRST BEGIN MY PROFILE
I have been learning about this surgrey for over a year now.
I've used up all the good excuses to put this off and find that now I'm left with just plain ole dumb excuses. Sooooo.....I guess it's time to see the light at the other end of the tunnel up close. I've made this EXTREMELY hard decision and now find I want everything to happen yesterday(okay now would be good too).
1/23/04 What a great support group meeting!!!! Well I finished all my tests and evals so I guess I'll have to send a pint of blood and my first-born to the insurance company to get approval. LOL I've spent a bit of time talking to the insurance company so it may not take too long(fingers,toes, and everything else crossed)so we will see. My son (25)has just realized that I am serious about this, tonight he calls and grills me about it. He wants to know more about it so he can support me. It was annoying and wonderful all at the same time.KIDS,(he is my first-born from the above statement gee I bet they send him back) sigh I also have a daughter(24)she will come when I have surgery. My DH is also behind this 100% so I feel very lucky and blessed to have all their support. I've told my sisters but not my Dad I'm not sure how he will take it(I am the baby)and I don't want to worry him. I will tell him right before time for surgery, I think. I go back and forth between "I wish it was soon" and "I hope I have more time to get things done" I just wish I could make up my mind while I still have a little of it(mind)left. as you can see I'm driving my self crazy glad that Psych doctor already gave me a letter. I'll be backkkkkkk..
02/14/04 Called Cheryl Thursday and she still has not faxed my information in, she says they are backed up. It seems now that I made this decision all I can think about is this surgery and website. On a good note I've made a few new friends which I'm sure glad to have someone to talk to about these things that doesn't think I'm obsessing. At least they don't notice I'm obseeing because they are to.LOL One of the things I have learned is that there are alot more people out there that feel the same things I do. Always knew they were some but, never dreamt that soooooo many felt exactly the same. Well Happy Valentines Day to all. Later!!!!!
02/16/04 Cheryl (doctors office) called on Sunday to tell me she had faxed my stuff to the insurance company. Working on Sunday !!!! Could we ask for any better, I think not!!! Then she called me today (Monday) I AM APPROVED !!!!!!!!! I cried I laughed then cried some more. I can hardly believe it. I was really to fight, ready for the long haul. Now I'm beside myself.....Supid grin on face. I have a date with Dr. Henderson on March 15 2004 I won't be late. (I hope) And it gets better, met my angel, Marlene when she came to town for a doctors appointment. Had a nice dinner with her and our husbands, Yes, we let them come along too. We seem to have alot in common. I'm glad we can do this together. Although she might get her surgery before me. She can show me how it's done. Thanks Cheryl and Marlene. I have to go and relax my face it hurts from grining so much. See ya!!!!!!
Well, had to postpone my surgery for one week from the 15th to the 22nd. My pulmonary doctor decided to go on a cruise WITHOUT my permission. Making all that money and going on vacation, boy those guys have it all, huh. Since my lungs are my downfall everyone(including Me) would really like for him to be around as I go into surgery. Sooooooo we wait till he gets back from the high seas. One week is not too bad.
I really want to share with you all what happen to me the other night. I was really starting to feel a little anxious wondering if I'm doing the right thing. So, I went to BINGO, my personal stress reliver. I'm sitting in non-smoking(not my usual place but has been since I decided on surgery) and these two ladys I have never seen come in and sit at the table next to me. As we are playing we chit-chat back and forth. I overhear this young lady telling her friend about what she has eaten and how wonderful sugar-free popcicles are. After she said a couple more things about water and protein I asked her if she was on a diet she tells me No she just had gastric bypass surgery in Nov.
Well, you could have knocked me over..........Her name is TinaMarie and I had even read her profile same doc as me and everything. How uncanny is that???????? Well, I no longer have any doubts wether this is the right thing for me, I mean really you don't have to knock me in the head with it (or maybe you do).
I even won a jackpot so it was a really really really good night!!!!!!! That's all for now!!!!!!!!!!!
Before & After
Surgeon: Peter Henderson, Jr., M.D., F.A.C.S.
I had already had a relationship with Dr. Henderson as he has done surgery for my husband (non-WLS). So I knew going in he was an excellent surgeon. I was concerned about his support program and after care, so when I went and expressed my concerns He actually listened and better than that he took action. He now has an excellent support program. His after care has always been good! Dr. H , Dr. Kent, Sandra(PA)and, the other doctors at their office have been very helpful, honest and down to earth. The office staff is by far the best I've ever dealt with. Truly warm, caring and professional. I would highly recommend (and I have) to anyone who is looking to change their life with this surgery.
Southcare/Georgia Healthcare Partnership, PPO
I was approved in less than 24 hours. I spoke with a lady named Paula Church and she told me what we needed and when she got it she called the doctor's office back immediately. And I was all set for long haul. Very Pleased
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