Before & After Revision sherriearc!

Before & After Revision to RNY with Sherrie!

December 21, 2015

Celebrating Sherrie's Revision to RNY Journey!

If you look at photos of me growing up, I am overweight in all of them. The chunky toddler, the "husky" girl in elementary school, the chubby wallflower in middle school - you get the picture. In college, the "Freshman Fifteen" was really the "Fifty."  I used to dream about going away to fat camp over the summer, and coming back thin and popular. I tried every diet I could, low-carb, low-fat, Weight Watchers, the Grapefruit diet - the blood type pills and any other gimmicky weight loss plan I could try. If I ever lost any weight, I always gained it back and then some.

Then, in 2005 I saw a TV commercial for the Lap-Band. It took me about five minutes to decide this new"less-invasive"procedure was for me and I was "banded" on October 5, 2005.  It was an epic disaster. I was 250 pounds when I was banded and my lowest weight was 223. Yep, major surgery for 27 pounds! I hated it so much. I was un-filled in 2009. I cried a lot over my failure. I went to therapy. I gained MORE weight. I weighed even more than when I had my Lap-Band - 286 pounds.

ObesityHelp Member: Sherrie, sherriearc
Weight Loss Total: 131 lbs
Surgery Type: Lap-Band Revision to RNY on 2/6/2013
Surgeon’s Name: Dr. Jin Yoo, Duke University

On July 1, 2012, I was blessed with new insurance that would potentially cover weight loss surgery revision. I was so excited I could hardly stand it. I had all of my testing done and was scheduled for surgery in September 2012. One week before my surgery date, my revision to gastric bypass was DENIED. I was devastated. My doctor did a peer-to-peer review and they denied me again. "Non compliance" with the Lap-Band was the reason for the denial. I was so angry. I was compliant. I did try. I decided not to give up and wrote my own appeal letter.

In my letter, I pointed out how many failed bands were out there. I sent them my gym membership contract. I detailed all the diets I went on with the band in place trying to make it work. I talked about the pain from the band, the reflux, the choking, the hunger and the stuck food. I pointed out the cost of obesity vs. surgery. I begged. I pleaded. BCBS had 30 days to make a decision on my appeal. On the very last day BCBS had to make their decision, at 1:00 pm they called me, and gave me the good news. My second chance was granted!!!

My Revision to RNY

The band was successfully removed and I was revised to RNY - Gastric Bypass on 2-6-2013. That is when my life changed forever!

The ObesityHelp community was there for me every step of the way. I actually joined OH in August of 2005, and then faded into the background when I failed with the Lap-Band. When revision was a possibility, I came back and scoured the boards for hours. I visited the Revision Board and the RNY forums nightly. It made such a difference knowing that I was not alone. There were others out there with my same struggles and the potential for success was right there in front of me. The Before & After pictures were so inspiring. I finally felt like I could do it.There is a lot of "tough love" on the boards from the "veterans" - but looking back, the advice was real and what the newbies and honeymooners need to hear. I felt totally prepared for my revision and my second chance at success, thanks to ObesityHelp!

I am not quite three years post-op, and maintenance is hard. The surgery was on my stomach, not my brain. I still want to eat. I still have to make healthy choices. If I eat junk, I gain weight,and I have to work hard to get it off. I know now that it will be a lifetime commitment to stay at a healthy weight. Surgery got me here, but I have to do the work to keep me here.

My Milestones & Non-Scale Victories

Fast forward to today. I am normal. I shop in the "ladies" section instead of the "women's." I fit into any booth. I am not ashamed to go to the doctor and step on the scale. I do not fear plastic chairs. I ride roller coasters. Bath towels wrap around me all the way. I do not get short of breath walking to the mail box. I have actually stood in the front row of pictures.

I just had the most amazing NSV... LAST NIGHT!!  I was at a magic show with my family and the magician asked for a "lovely assistant" from the audience. Surprisingly, he chose me. I was escorted on stage where he proceeded to "saw me in half"!! Before WLS, I would have never fit in the box!!

In May of this year, I did all of the obstacles at the Dirty Girl 5k Mud Run, including sliding down the firepole! My list of NSVs goes on and on.

Before & After Revision with sherriearc

Weight loss surgery has given me a life I never knew I could have. I would do the revision again in a heartbeat.

 Share your Before & After Success!

Do you have Before & Afters, special milestones and non-scale victories from your journey that you’d like to share? The OH team wants to hear from you! Visit our Before & After Submission page for details.