Before & After RNY with Nourish 3

Before & After RNY with Nourish, losing 85lbs!

November 21, 2017

Why I Decided To Have WLS

I would like to tell a little about my struggle with obesity. I tried so many diets in my lifetime and they worked to a point but then the weight just came back on, plus more than I originally lost.

My journey all began in 2001 when I realized that I had to do something as the weight was starting to affect my health. With the passing of my dad in 1998, I knew that I did not want to go that same route and I was heading in that direction. At the time, I was an office assistant in medical billing. One day, I contacted a patient about her insurance and during our conversation she brought the gastric bypass to my attention I knew it was something I needed to look into further.

15 years ago the gastric bypass was not available as it is today and physicians where choosier of whom they would do the surgery on. My friend introduced me to her surgeon but he would not do surgery on me because he felt that I wasn’t obese enough, even though I was over 255 pounds at 5’6". He did not take into account that I had the co-morbid conditions of becoming a diabetic, was on medication for high blood pressure, an enlarged spleen, and I weighed over 255 pounds. A co-worker told me of a surgeon that her neighbor had, so I contacted him. In October 2001, I had my first consultation with Dr. Jonathan Aranow in Middletown, CT.

I felt that I could not tell anyone that I was going to have the gastric bypass because I did not want anyone to talk me out of it until I was ready. I had to accept and process it first.

I had to go through a number of tests, see a nutritionist, and get the psych evaluation done before my insurance would approve my surgery. My insurance was approved and I had my surgery on March 25, 2002. Once everything was set I was able to tell my family, friends and request a medical leave.

Before & After RNY with Nourish

Total Weight Loss: 85 pounds
Surgery Type: RNY
Date of Surgery: March 25, 2002
Surgeon's Name: Jonathan Aranow

My Surgery and Post-Op Life

I did not have the basic 5-inch incision because, at the time of the surgery, I had my spleen removed due to its poor condition. It was not easy in the beginning. I just didn’t have the gastric bypass to recover from but the splenectomy also. I felt I lost my best friend (food), so don’t let people tell you that you took the easy way out. I spent many hours on the obesity website to learn as much as I could. I attended all of the support groups at the hospital.

By my 9th-month post- op, I had lost most of my weight. I went from a size 24 down to a size 12/14. My surgeon told me that I would stop losing weight at about 170 - 180 pounds and I could not accept it. I wanted to prove him wrong but could not do it. I would see others lose their weight and I could not understand why I wasn’t going to get into a size 8 or 10. I learned through all of this that the surgeon changed my stomach size, but my mindset was still the same old “obese” Debbie. Yes, I was right where the surgeon said I would be, even though I wanted to lose more weight and make my weight loss be 100 pounds.

I had the extra skin removed (tummy tuck) in 2003 and 6-8 pounds of hanging skin was removed. Shortly after recovering from my tummy tuck, my gallbladder shut down, and I had to have another surgery so it could be removed. My weight dipped down into the 160’s during that time but it was short lived.

During the original consulting interview with my surgeon, he informed me that right about the one year mark, you may or will gain about 10 pounds back and that is where you should stay around that weight (for life) and that is what was happening. I was not happy with that. My mind kept playing back to me what my surgeon had told me, so my mindset took it as written in stone, “This is the weight I will be... and no lower.”

I believe that you should not let your life circumstances hold you back from your dreams. You might have to delay them at some point but don’t give up! No matter what you take in from others and what they say.

In 2008, I graduated from the Institute for Integrative Nutrition and opened my own health practice. In 2010, I changed my business name to reflect my own success with obesity. From there, I became certified by the American Association of Drugless Practitioners. The more I changed, the more I wanted to grow my knowledge so I went on to obtain my certification at the Acupressure Institute. The universe then put my life in another direction for knowledge and growth again. In August 2011, I received my hypnosis certification and have integrated hypnosis into my practice.

With the support of Dr. Aranow, I am now letting my clients know that I too had to let go of my feelings that were holding me back in life. I had feelings of neglect and not fitting into my family. I have learned with the help of hypnosis how to release these feelings. I now feel that I have had success over my obesity. I have also learned to bring balance to my life and practice with the help of hypnosis. In the fall of 2013, I changed the name of the business once again to reflect my desire for people to know they need to see things differently in order to move forward in life and it’s not just about their weight loss.

Everyone is different; it could be neglect, abuse, or so many other barriers that are not allowing them to move forward (like it did to me).

For the first time in my life, I am feeling blessed.

I would like to say...My life has changed dramatically since my surgery and I would have to definitely say it is for the better. I have changed so many things in my life and this is just the tip of the iceberg. I can’t believe that I am going to be 15 years post–op shortly. Where has the time gone? I am living my motto: Change your life by changing your mindset!

Share Your Before & After Success!

Celebrate your own Before & After WLS Success, milestones, non-scale victories, and inspire others! The OH team wants to hear from you to share your weight loss surgery journey. Visit our Before & After Submission page for details.