My initial consultation meeting with Lorna was an eye opener as it cemented my decision. I went with the intention of just getting some advice but in fact that meeting was the final realisation that I needed to do something sooner rather than later. Lorna and all the staff in that first meeting were very helpful and provided a range of options for me to think about.
Being overweight since the age of 11 I grew up with getting bigger and bigger and not really noticing. A holiday photo really showed me that I was the biggest person in the picture and made me take the decision to have surgery.
My time in the hospital was good and all the hospital staff went out of their way to ensure that I was comfortable and safe. After my stay I recovered very well and was back at work after 10 days. The aftercare and dietary follow ups with Dr Pender helped focus me further to ensure great results.
I have really too many milestones to focus on, as they are often small things that most people overlook. Realising I could tie my shoe without having to heave my foot up to knee height, sitting in a chair and knowing that it can hold my weight, not worrying about taking up so much space in a plane seat, not having that feeling that I stand out and feeling comfortable enough to actually participate in fitness classes.
The best thing about the procedure is that I am a fit and healthy individual that does not have to live with the burden of being obese. Weight loss surgery changed my life, not just from a health point of view as I actually was quite a 'healthy fat person' but more from a confidence point of view.
I have worked hard, above and beyond my surgery, to look the way I do and to ensure that I stay within 1/2 a stone or so of my ideal weight which is not easy to do. After the initial weight loss derived from surgery, it is up to the individual to maintain it, you have to work at it and not fall into bad habits. The surgery will not fix every problem that has caused a person to become obese but it is an incredible tool that helps a person take a step in the right direction.
Now, I go to at least five fitness classes a week and have no weight related concerns. I still love food and enjoy everything I eat. I certainly don't restrict myself but that doesn’t mean I can eat rubbish all the time - there are consequences. However, I don't fear eating what I want, now that I understand what eating in moderation actually means. When you're obese, diets work for a while and then something will falter that progress and before you know it, twice as much weight is back on and you are back to square one. For me, the surgery I had took that cycle of failure away and has allowed me to be the person I should have been all along.