My name is Cheryl. And I am fat.
I've struggled with my weight through all of my adult life. As a child/teen, I was the envy of my friends and now through all of my adult years, I've done every single weight loss plan imaginable. At my highest, I was 245 lbs.
Like every other person who fights with their self image and self esteem related to their weight, I did every single weight loss fad diet there was. Soup diet, LA Weight Loss, Weight Watchers, Low Cal, Low Carb, NO Carb, South Beach, Atkins, Jenny Craig, High protein, Carbohydrate addicts... and then the exercise. I joined gyms a few times over the years and even lost 60+ pounds at one point with a personal trainer that pushed me so hard I literally couldn't get up off the toilet without screaming in pain. I owe my metabolic resistance also to the millions of "miracle weight loss" pills I've popped. I have contributed to nothing but their bottom line and the size of my ass with all these methods.
Every time though, the weight came back on. I would work so hard, be so "good", lose the weight and then one slip up or a slight slackening in my new lifestyle and a blink later, the weight was back. And then some. At one point, I regained the entire 50 lbs back in 4 months. It was completely devastating. I've gained and lost the same 20-30 lbs a million times. It's been devastating to live this life of dieting, deprivation, humiliation and secret shame.
I'd had enough.
I started researching weight loss surgery. The first place I found offered the Slimband for a mere $16,000. Ha! Who has that kind of money!? We certainly don't. I had been working with my doctor on getting me into a program that offers free bariatric surgery paid by the Health Care system. I didn't qualify for them simply because I wasn't fat ENOUGH. They just wouldn't pay for it. Unfortunately, I had to GAIN weight in order to qualify. Ugh. Well that was easy since all I was doing was exercising 4-5 times a week and eating 1300 calories for months. Why would I expect nothing else other than to gain yet more weight? By the time I was finally accepted in the program, I'd managed to find myself at 35.4 BMI and a weight of 218 lbs.
I started looking into other options since I'd learned that the waiting list was years long for the free surgery.
I found VSG.
Sleeve Gastrectomy is a surgical weight loss tool in which the stomach is reduced to about 25% of its original size, by surgical removal of a large portion of the stomach, following the major curve. The open edges are then attached together (often with surgical staples, glue and possibly cauterization) to form a sleeve or tube with a banana shape. The procedure permanently reduces the size of the stomach and is performed laparoscopically and is not reversible.
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