This post is for all the pre-ops and newbies looking into gastric banding surgery.
I hope that I can provide some insight into what life has been like for the past year. Please keep in mind that each bandster's journey is unique. I don't think that there are any words of wisdom below...but rather what I did along my journey to make the band work for me. Keep in mind, everybody's journey is different.
Here are some other reasons why I think that I've been successful with my band:
- I tell everyone and anyone that has asked "how are you losing weight?" about the band. For me, this is a way to keep myself accountable. It is also a chance to share info with others that may benefit from learning about different options of weight loss surgery that are out there. My response to that question usually goes like this "Well, I eat about 1200 calories a day of high-protein foods, exercise about 4 times a week, and I had lapband surgery in October" My hope is that they realize that it's about more than just the band.
- I have a very "black and white" mentality about a lot of things in life...in my brain things are either "right" or "wrong".... and "on" or "off". Therefore, I really threw myself into this journey of being a compliant lapband patient. Don't worry, I am trying to find those "gray" areas in life and on this journey...it's still a learning experience each day.
- My slight obsession with personal finance and budgeting. Suze Orman is my BFF....catch my drift? I don't buy anything over about $500 without researching it thoroughly on Consumer Reports, Cnet.com, and making at least 1 spreadsheet. OCD? Structured? Absolutely. Since my insurance coverage through work is CRAP, I was/am a self pay patient. I was (and still am) focused on the THOUSANDS of dollars that I spent on the pre-op appts, surgery, and aftercare. Can you say E.X.P.E.N.S.I.V.E.? But totally worth each and every penny. From my calculations, that's about $161 per pound lost. I would probably be driving a new-to-me (used) Honda if I hadn't had the surgery. Therefore, I sometimes remind myself of the analogy that I wouldn't put sand in a new car's gas tank, then why would I shove junk food in my mouth.
- Am I still tempted by foods that I shouldn't eat? ABSOLUTELY...every day...isn't everyone? Would I rather sit on the couch after work and watch TV instead of going to Zumba or for a power walk? YES. Therefore, one of my biggest fears is that my old behaviors will creep back in to my life and I'll gain all the weight back...
- 102 lbs! Another YAY!
- The need fo prescription blood pressure meds
- Knee pain after walking or up just one flight of stairs
- Waking up in the morning with back pain
- Swollen ankles and feet at the end of the day
- The need to sleep all of the time...I was so tired.
- My size 22/24 clothes
- My size 44DD bras (yikes!)
- Taken my measurements (waist, hips, thighs, neck, wrist, etc) pre-op. When the scale was unkind to me at a weigh-in, it would have been nice to see the measurements shrinking.
- Better understood that each bandster's experiences are their own and we're all unique in our journey with this band. I wish I hadn't compared my self to other bandsters.