Before and After RNY with Valerie V., down 100 pounds!March 22, 2022
Author: Valerie Vargas
Before and After RNY with Valerie V: What is the difference between January 2003 and January 2022? A hundred pounds. January is my anniversary month. 19 years ago, I had gastric bypass surgery, specifically the roux-en-y.
It was picking up in popularity, motivated by the change of Carnie Wilson. I researched the topic. Between the last year of nursing school and a few years into my nursing career, I had become rather unhealthy at a short stature of 5”1’ and 245 pounds. For you ladies, that’s a size 24.
Why I Decided to Have WLS
Before dedicating myself to this decision, I spent a month being a camp nurse in a weight loss camp in La Jolla, California. I did as much exercise as possible and ate their lean fare, but it made no difference at the time. I came back defeated and determined to get that surgery.
January 6, 2003 was my surgery date and I have never regretted it.
Before and After RNY with Valerie V.
My Surgery and Post-Op Life
At first, the weight melted so magically, I could hardly eat the protein requirements. Cold water bothered my new pouch and I developed a preference for room temperature water.
My taste for sweets was redesigned to a new level; I like them now in little bits. Now I cannot eat a donut; I can but I will pay a price about 90 minutes later when my blood sugar drastically drops. That feeling is so gross and I know what’s coming next; my hearing gets weird and my hands will start to shake and I know I need some carbs with protein to get me back on track.
The whole process with the low blood sugar takes 20 minutes to feel better and I hate every minute of it. So I’ve lost my sweet tooth, what else?
My hair has never regrown to its magnificent state; it is on the thin side. It’s all protein-related and malnutrition as the surgeon did cut out 11 cm of my small intestine and make a small pouch of my stomach.
Occasionally, if I eat something too rich like cheese enchiladas, I will get nauseated and regret the meal for a while. Alcohol hits me quick; within minutes. I need to be mindful or preferably not drink.
Since that January, I have always done exercise, be it walking or jogging. In the last 5 years, I added strength training and that has made the biggest transformation in my body. By far, the best decision I have ever made was to use weights or my own body weight to exercise. This has changed my body to a more lean muscle mass.
I drink water, eat healthy and avoid bringing sweets to my home to stop the temptation….. I walk, hike, and do my strength training. These are the mechanics of being successful.
Am I healing? There is emotional eating, it still happens but not as frequently. I have worked with therapists, Neurofeedback, EFT, journaling, and art. I am more comfortable in my body and I see the wounded warrior more clearly now. In my mind's eye, I am forever the fat kid, but now I can walk away from the cake.
I ran a few half marathons, did a mini-triathlon, tried new things like indoor rock climbing and surfing, love my body with all its stretch marks and saggy parts, I am beautiful, intelligent, strong, and loving.
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.