After a weight loss struggle that has lasted sixteen years, I have decided to begin my journey towards weight loss surgery. After researching the topic for years, I have decided on gastric bypass at UPMC’s Magee Women’s Hospital. I finally feel like I am ready to make a complete lifestyle change. While many consider bariatric surgery the easy way out, it’s far from it. The process is long and complicated but I am hopeful that the end result will be well worth it! My estimated surgery date is in August.
First, a patient must undergo a 6 month pre-op diet. That is the stage I’m currently at. It proves to your insurance company that you are ready to make a real change in your life and it also gives you time to think about if the surgery is really for you. You must attend monthly meetings and weigh-ins with your primary care doctor. They will ask you questions about your diet, exercise and overall health. It is recommended that you lose 10% of your body fat before the surgery. For me, that’s 5 pounds a month. So far, so good.
At the three month mark, you meet your bariatric surgeon to discuss the procedure and your expectations. You may also have to meet with nutritionists, psychologists, behaviourists and exercise specialists. Two weeks before your surgery date you will begin a liquid diet. Luckily, the hospital stay for gastric bypass is only two to three days. In a week, you can resume your normal routine.
However, the routine that you may have been used to will be completely different. The first three months are the hardest, as you ween yourself back onto normal foods. It is absolutely vital that you eat the right foods and take your vitamins. Even the smallest slip-up could result in vomiting, nausea, cramps, diarrhea, weakness or hair-loss. Many patients even fall into depression during this time.
Luckily, I have spent enough time thinking about how this surgery will affect every aspect of my life. I have read every article I could find on gastric bypass, the good and the bad. I know the risks but more importantly, I know the rewards. I truly believe that I am finally going to find the person I’m meant to be.
I am using my blog as a tool, as a promise to myself. I need you guys to keep me on track! I hope to have everyone’s support during this journey, because I am going to need it.