Save the Date
Apr 30, 2015
I had my OTN appointment with Dr. Sullivan this morning. He seemed very self assured without being smug or cocky. He took time to answer all of my questions, and made sure I had all the information I needed. He reviewed the risks of surgery, and how likely these risks are. He talked about what the process would be from my pre-op appointment on. He seemed very realistic and caring about what my experience would be like. I felt very prepared for this meeting, and there were no surprises. He discussed how the surgery can be used as a tool, but how the weight loss I can expect to see, and my ability to maintain that loss lays in my hands, because this it no "quick fix." All in all, I feel very comfortable to be in his care.
He also gave me his office number so I could call to book a surgery date. I have been tentatively been booked in for August 4th. The pre-op has not been booked yet, because the person I spoke with did not have Dr. Sullivan's July OR schedule, and was expecting to receive that in about two weeks. If there is an opening in July, I will be bumped up to that, and the pre-op will be scheduled accordingly. I will require three weeks of the Optifast.
I am so pleased with how supportive my friends and family have been. My mum has already picked up a big box of sugar free pop-cycles for me, "since they're so hard to find later in the season." My sister has pledged to pay for a year's membership at the Y for me, so I can have a pool and gym (and sauna and hot tub!) at my disposal while I shrink. My friends have discussed how we will change how we socialize/eat together, to accommodate my new way of living. We've even started doing more active things together (bowling). Two friends have offered to accompany me to Toronto for the pre-op appointment, and one of them will also be accompanying me for the surgery. The co-workers I've told have been very excited and supportive as well. They joke that if I'm still not able to carry things around the office when I get back from surgical leave, that they will get me a wheelie cart. One colleague has already called "dibs" on all the clothes I shrink out of, which I thought was very flattering.
The one concern I have is that I am a contract worker, and I worry that asking for/taking a three week sick leave will result in my contract being ended. I've had some reassurance that the contract can remain open if the position can be back filled while I'm off, and that my supervisors are very pleased with my performance and want me to stay. However, I will still need to speak to the director of our department to get confirmation of this. 75% of my mind thinks it will all be fine, and there is no need for concern, but 25% is still worried. I have sent an email to the director, asking for a meeting, but I'm not sure if she was even in the office today.
However, I can set that 25% aside and be very excited to have a surgery date. Looking at all the success stories and transformation photos on this site has been very motivating and encouraging.
One Step Closer
Apr 21, 2015
I started thinking about WLS, and if it would be right for me, last summer. Living in Ontario, Canada, WLS is paid for by our provincial health insurance, but there is a process to qualify and prepare for the procedure. This was a good thing for me as it gave me a lot of time to figure out if this was a really good match for my life, and if I could make the changes necessary for such a procedure to be successful. My family doctor made a referral for me in August, and in October, I went to an all-day orientation session to learn about the procedure and what to expect from the process.
After that, I resumed logging what I ate (something I had quit doing for a long time) and reduced the amount of pop and caffeine I consumed. I met with a nurse, to discuss my overall health and record my medications, I spoke with a pharmacist to discuss how my current meds would work post surgery. I then spoke with my family doctor to make changes to what I was taking. I met with a nutritionist, and social worker. I took part in a sleep study, and had lots of blood work done.
Since my last cruise (in January, 2015) I have not drunk any pop or coffee. I have eliminated all caffeine. I was never a big drinker, but I haven't had any alcohol since the cruise either. I am trying to be more active, and wear an activity tracker to help keep me motivated. I still struggle with food cravings and over eating, but I feel quite pleased with the progress I've made. I think that WLS would be a good thing for me, and a useful tool to improve my health.
Today I received a call from the bariatric clinic to schedule a teleconference with a surgeon. This is the next step in the process. It's a 15 minute meeting to review my health and the procedure. Then a face to face meeting with the surgeon and anesthesiologist is scheduled. Following that, I would start the protein shake/clear fluids fast (not really a fast...but a very limited diet) and the surgery would be several weeks after that.
The surgeon I'll be working with is Dr. Sullivan from St. Joseph's Health Centre in Toronto. It's about a four hour drive from my home, so arrangements will need to be made, but that should be easy enough to arrange, as I should have a lot of lead time to plan. All the reviews about Dr. Sullivan that I've read on this site have been glowing, so I feel really positive about him doing my surgery as well.
I feel very excited about his and feel ready to move forward. I'm glad it's taken this much time to get to this stage, so I have been able to carefully consider and prepare. There is no rush to get this done, but it's still exciting to look forward to.