I had my Mini Gastric Bypass procedure on November 19, 2018 and the changes that have occurred over the last 7 months are still surreal to me. Daily life is significantly easier, and I’ve noticed so many positive changes aside from dropping the weight (85 pounds so far and counting!).
One of the main reasons I had the surgery was my chronic back pain. I ruptured a disc in 2011 and have suffered from varying degrees of daily pain since then, which significantly impacted my quality of life. The back pain and other chronic pains defined me as a person. I always had to consider how much pain a social outing would cause me, and over the years I was able to do less and less. Even light activities would cause severe pain and discomfort. A lack of ability to exercise led to more weight gain, which made the problems even worse.
Now, the daily pain is noticeably less. There is a definite improvement and increase in what I would call my “back muscle stamina”. I notice I walk better and my posture has improved. I can also walk significantly longer and faster without experiencing pain.
Other expected changes are more physical energy, improved mood, and, of course, the non-scale victories. These are often more important to me than the number on the scale. Since dropping the weight, some of the non-scale victories I have experienced are fitting into chairs more easily, wrapping a towel fully around my body, wrapping apron ties all the way around me and tying them in the front, buying clothes that aren’t plus sized, no longer requiring certain medications, not shying away from pictures, having extra slack on my airplane seatbelt (instead of worrying I might need an extender), seeing my collar bones for the first time, actually having a neck, and having to adjust my driver’s seat/steering wheel settings because I actually sit lower in my vehicle since my butt is so much smaller!
Another thing I found interesting was discovering my relationship with food. I remember before the surgery people asked me if I was an emotional eater – and I honestly didn’t know. I can never remember turning to food for “comfort” when I was sad or upset or depressed because food was always there. I just loved eating and never gave myself any limits. With the help of the dietitians at SmartShape and the webinars I participated in, I can honestly say that my eating habits have changed for the better. This surgery is the best thing I ever did for myself, and I am proud to have adapted so well to the lifestyle changes. Bariatric surgery isn’t the “easy way out” or “cheating at weight loss”. It’s hard and sacrifices are made, but the new life I have received is worth every challenge I may have faced.
Overall, I am grateful I took a leap of faith and trusted this was the right decision for me. After thorough research, I knew I would be in good hands with my surgeon and his team. I felt taken care of every step of the way and on surgery day I knew I made the right choice – the surgeon and everyone else involved were all very calm and caring. The office staff have been great as well! I know I’m a little bit of a squeaky-wheel type patient (what can I say, I ask a lot of questions!), and you guys have always answered all of my questions promptly and kindly!
So thank you to everyone at SmartShape for helping me with this journey. I put in the daily work, but you gave me the tools to succeed and continue to support me along the way.