Thursday, May 12, 2016

Today Is My 1 Year Weight Loss Surgery Anniversary

Today marks the one year anniversary of my weight loss surgery. I previously touched on this in a past blog but today is a huge milestone. My whole life has changed drastically in one year. I truly feel like I've been reborn.

I don't want to go too much in depth about what caused me to gain a massive amount of weight. The fault was my own. However, there were a lot of things out of my control that happened in my life, a lot of deaths of very cherished people, the depression that comes with such, health problems that prevented me from being active, etc. As a result I reached a dangerous size. I was morbidly obese. I knew I couldn't do it on my own. I mean, I could lose weight but I could never keep it off. It would always come back but with additional gain. I had tried all kinds of spells and workings to lose the weight but it wasn't until I changed my mind on how it could be done that I stumbled across the solution. I was always opposed to weight loss surgery and so this put stipulations on my magical workings which would limit my results. When I finally got desperate enough that I was willing to do anything and changed my mind and perceptions, the solution just fell in my lap. My weight loss spells manifested in a way that I previously was opposed to and it also manifested alongside another working I did to be able to travel to California. Life is funny like that some times.

On May 12, 2015, I had my weight loss surgery in Tijuana. I had traveled to San Diego and then was taken across the border. I had a procedure called Vertical Sleeve Gastrectomy, or "gastric sleeve" for short. About 80% of my stomach was removed. The normal human stomach is the size of a football. My new stomach is the size of a banana. As a result of the surgery I can only consume small portions of food, ranging from a few ounces to a cup of food, depending upon what I'm eating. However, the amazing thing about this is that I am fully satiated from eating so little. When our stomachs are full they send signals to the brain that makes us feel satiated and we stop eating. Since my stomach is so small I get those signals way quicker and with very little food. So I feel satiated off of a few ounces of food while a person without the surgery may have to eat an entire plate of food, or more to full satisfaction. Before surgery I could eat an entire large pizza by myself in one sitting. Today, I can't even finish one slice. I believe the surgery, along with quitting smoking, saved my life.

My Stats:

Highest Recorded Weight - 388 lbs
Weight at Time I Decided to Have Surgery - 370 lbs
Weight on Day of Surgery - 350 lbs
Current Weight, 1 Year After Surgery - 190 lbs (and still losing!)
Goal Weight - 170 lbs
Total Weight Loss Since Surgery - 180 lbs
Highest Recorded BMI (Body Mass Index) - 52.6
Current BMI - 25.8
Largest Pant Size - 46
Current Pant Size - 32
Largest Shirt Size - 4X
Current Shirt Size - L 

I want to give a shout out to my niece, Jazmine, who thought it was funny to say that my legs are so skinny they look like teenage girl legs. Trust me, I am taking that as a compliment! I would much rather have "teenage girl legs" than massive tree trunks. Also, a shout out to my friends who told me that I went from a "2" to an "8" on a scale of attractiveness. That was much appreciated! Finally, a shout out to my best friend Michelle who told me, "Now there is no one out of your league, only people beneath you." (Kind of a mean-spirited comment but it's definitely and ego-booster!)

So what's next? Well, I have 20 more pounds to lose and then I will be at my goal weight. I also need to start saving for my plastic surgery to have my excess skin removed. I do suffer from a bit of body dysmorphia, meaning my brain is not processing the new reality of what I look like. When I look into the mirror I still see the same old fat me, but I'm told this will take time and that eventually my brain will adjust. I also need time adjusting to the new sexual and romantic attention I'm getting from both men and women. I know it sounds strange but when I was big I was invisible. I could go out in public and not get any attention from women or men. Not anymore! I swear I can't even fill up my car tank without someone hitting on me. Again, a lot of the issues I'm having is due to the temporary body dysmorphia and hopefully I will adjust to the attention in time. However, I do somewhat miss the invisibility that came with my obesity. Guys, if I walk into a bathroom it's because I genuinely need to use the restroom. I'm not looking for a hook up. Just because I politely thank you for any compliments you give me does not in any way shape or form indicate I am sexually attracted to you. Ladies, I don't feel comfortable when you approach me and begin touching my body. The arm or shoulder is okay but when you start touching my abdomen or thighs you make me feel uncomfortable as I still have excess skin. Plus it's very awkward for strangers to touch people in those places. Also, if I seem quiet or shy it's because I am. Please don't assume I'm a snob. When you are big you retreat into yourself for comfort and protection and it will take time before you can learn to come out again.

So I've thought about whether or not I should include pictures of my transformation. Like most conjure workers I am hesitant of putting anything out there that enemies might use against me in spiritual attacks. However, after praying and consulting with my spirits I now believe it's perfectly okay and that these pictures may help inspire other people who are currently in similar situations to make their decisions for surgery.

Here are my BEFORE pictures:

I'm the blob behind the boy. This picture was taken in April 2015, one month before surgery. 



My driver's license photo. I routinely get questioned over this. Cashiers always say I look nothing like this and I have to explain to them that I had weight loss surgery. 

This was taken on the day of my surgery. 



Here are my AFTER pictures:






So, for all my readers who are in a similar predicament and who are interested in the surgery I can not recommend it enough. It will change your life. I truly believe that it saved mine. I had the symptoms of borderline diabetes, had high blood pressure, had high cholesterol, sleep apnea, and had heart murmurs which produced bouts of faint. The surgery put an end to all of that. Today, I am perfectly healthy. The years I wasted yo-yo dieting seem like a bad dream. Please don't buy into the hype from people like Oprah who want to sell you a system that makes you dependent upon a corporation. Those things really only work for people who are just overweight and not obese or morbidly obese. If you are of the latter groups you really should consider the surgery. If your insurance doesn't cover bariatric surgery then consider doing what I did and travel to Tijuana. It was wonderful. It felt just like a vacation. I went to Tijuana because I did not have insurance. The self-pay rate in my state was about 20 grand. I had my procedure in Tijuana for $4,500 (with $800 more to have my gall bladder removed at the same time.) This has been the best decision for my health that I have ever made. I think you will feel the same way. Now, the gastric sleeve has the lowest rates for complications and mortality. Don't take my word for it. Do your research. I researched everything for about a year before deciding to have the surgery. 



This is a video from one my favorite Youtubers who had the gastric sleeve. This video is about 10 things she wished she knew about before having the surgery. Check her channel out for more videos.



One more thing, about pain. The whole surgery was a breeze. There was very little pain. It just felt like I was punched in the stomach. The only truly painful experience I had with the surgery was when they removed the drain. That hurt like a bitch and my entire abdomen cramped up something fierce. However, the pain only lasted a few seconds and then the drain was out and it was over with. So for all those out there dreading about how painful it's going to be, don't worry about it. I was so scared it was going to be painful and it was a complete breeze for me.

11 comments:

  1. OMG Doc, you look great!!! I've been thinking about having the surgery. I WAS 140 ten years ago, now I'm 230. I lost weight by starving myself and taking pills. I don't want to go that route again. I think surgery might be what I need, but I'm concerned because, after all, they are removing 80% of my stomach. LOL. Bonnie :)

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    1. Hi Bonnie! Thank you for the compliment. I too used to starve myself and I was addicted to phentermine for years. It got to the point where I needed the pills just to function. Phentermine works for a while but then your body gets uses to it and you stop losing weight. Plus it's speed and I personally fell it will damage your heart if you take it for a long period of time. It's actually only supposed to be prescribed for 6 months or less but I was on it for over 5 years. So in my opinion it's bad.

      Keep in mind that gastric sleeve is just one of many types of bariatric surgeries available. I chose it because the results are almost the same as the traditional gastric bypass but without having to re-route the small intestines. It also has less risk of complications and death.

      If you are interested then talk to your doctor. If you have insurance you will have to meet all the requirements. The number one requirement is a BMI of over 40 or at least 35 with one or more comorbidities, such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, etc. If you are doing self pay you don't have to worry about that. Do research it thoroughly and don't rush into a decision. :) I researched it for a year, reading everything I could find online and in books and then when I finally decided to have the surgery and to go to Tijuana it then took me about 8 months to save up enough money. It was well worth it!

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  2. Very big change!!! Perhaps you're getting married? LOL :)
    What makes you happy and healthy is the most important thing!

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    1. Thank you. Nope, no plans for marriage in my near future. ;)

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  3. Well congratulations! You look great!

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  4. You look great! Funny thing surprised by your before pics..I got a reading from you about 2 years ago and I imagined you looked like your after pics.

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  6. What an inspiring story, Doc! Thank you for sharing. Like you, I had my own weight loss story too. And I'm glad I found helpful people on my journey.

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