Hello! My name is Alesha and I’m 23 years old. I grew up in Dallas, Texas currently in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. As a child I was always chubby and bigger than the other children so that was always hard on me. By the time I was in 10th grade I was up to 275 lbs. That same year on April 23, 2010, my mother was killed in a tragic car accident. She was overweight as well and was struggling from diabetes, heart problems, etc. She was driving to Oklahoma to attend her own fathers funeral when she had a silent heart attack and her car swerved over into the other lane of oncoming traffic (there was no median). She hit a truck head on and was killed instantly. That was the day my life changed for the worst. I ate and ate to grieve. I got up to 387 lbs over the next 5 years. I could no longer grocery shop, tie my shoes, and everything always made my back hurt. I was pre diabetic and on blood pressure medications. My weight and health was spiraling out of control. I tried every single diet in the book to lose weight and nothing was working. Then, I found a diet that worked for me and I lost 50 lbs, but shortly after I gain that back plus more. My uncle had WLS and was telling me about his experience and all of the positive benefits so I was strongly considering it. I finally decided that would be the only way to save myself. I had VSG on 5/15/17 and I’m down 106 lbs. I’m able to walk around the grocery store, I’m no longer on blood pressure medication, and I’m no longer a pre diabetic in my 20’s. My confidence and self esteem is getting better with each passing day. I’m so excited to see where this journey continues to take me! Thanks for listening and I wish everyone good luck on their journey!
We all start our journeys at different places, I started mine at a very early age. I’ve always been the biggest in the room, always and even 170 lbs later I still feel the same way. About 5 years ago I started to realize that the cycle of diets, starvation, and fads did nothing. I’d lose 20 or 30 pounds then stall – get frustrated and cheat. The cheating would cause the cycle to swing the other way. Pretty soon, I was staring down 400 pounds and wondering what I should do about it. I had a totally unhealthy cycle of mental thought that kept me pinned to the weight and climbing. I wasn’t worth what everyone else was. I wasn’t capable of doing some things that my friends were, and that was ok – I just told myself it was just because we were all different. But, that’s not what it was. I was holding myself back. In September of 2016, at 436 pounds I knew that all had to change. I started the process to qualify for surgery. I worked through my surgeon and insurance company’s qualifications. Even with all that said, I was still woefully unprepared for the changes in my life. February 2017 I had surgery, everything went like clockwork. I hated prep, but I survived. After surgery things seemed – dare I say, easy. I had no complications, but stuck as close to my surgeons rules as humanly possible. If I could give people one bit of advice it would be that. FOLLOW YOUR DOCTORS DIRECTIONS. In truth, things can and do happen, but you can make life a whole lot easier if you do. About 2 months post op, I hit a wall. I was angry and anxious all the time, snapping at nearly everyone – mostly my husband. When I went in for my physical with my primary physician we had a very frank conversation and determined the best option would be to try some anti-anxiety meds and counseling. You cannot underscore the importance of your mental health on this journey. If you need to find someone to talk to along the way – PLEASE make sure you do. So let’s talk about Family. Let’s talk about the most open and giving community I have ever had the pleasure of being a part of. Because it is. We are truly a family, we curse – we laugh- we cry, but through it all – we have each other’s back. We are a support system. A safe place to vent, to cry, to find your inner power. I don’t know what I would have done without family. I can’t talk about my surgery journey without talking about it. I hope no matter where you are in the process you find the best path for you. We are here. We welcome you. #OhanaStrong
Before my surgery I weighed 317 lbs. I always fell an had health problems an talked to my family doctor about lot of stuff that was happening to me an they came up with me having the roux-en-Y surgery. An before Surgery i could eat anything but after surgery you have to eat certain foods and flow a chart of stuff that they give you. An before I had my surgery you also have to have classes an make a amount of weight you would like to loose or what they think is best for you. An have to eat certain foods for 6 months I think before you go have your surgery an after surgery they give you liquid stuff for a few weeks an stuff an they have you up walking after surgery.. an every since I’ve had it I’ve been having this puking where I can’t keep anything down an I’m 9 months out an had my surgery December 5, 2016 an I weigh 188.2 lbs an haven’t lost weigh by a good way but only because I have puked more than I was supposed to that’s why I have lot more weigh the unhealthy way instead of losing it the right way. My challenges are to loss weigh as best as I can an was to exercise but I haven’t been able to do that because I’ve been puking lot an haven’t felt good or anything.. an my success are to hopefully feel better an to get to do lot more an to work out an to work on losing that extra skin an to get to my goal weight that I have set.. my highs would be I felt lot better before my surgery by the none puking an can eat what I’m aloud to an what I’m not to eat is alright. An my lows would be hopefully to get all of this surgery I have coming up an having good results on it an hopefully it all comes out good an my bad lows would be this surgery is a good one but it doesn’t fit everyone or they don’t come out with the same effect an different experiences from the surgery.. before my surgery I wouldn’t play or do anything really but I’m glad I had it for the sake of my health an for my grandkids an to do lot more with the family an to better my health life an to try to be more fit..
So here is my story
My name is Jackie, I have been struggling with my weight as long as I can remember. When I was in high school I got myself down to 119lbs but did not do it in such a smart way. Starting my senior year the weight kept creeping up. I didn’t think much of it at the time. But it just kept going up.
I got married to my best friend when I was 24 (still married to him my biggest supporter and best friend) and I honestly didn’t think I was as big as I was until I tried on dresses and they ordered me a size 20 I was humiliated. So the following year my sister got married On The beach and I was determined to loose weight, I got a trainer went 5 days a week to the gym but the weight did not move. I did get stronger but I still was not happy.
Fast forward 2 years and I got pregnant with my first son and found out I was gestational diabetic I was in tears. I got to my highest weight while I was pregnant 250lbs. I didn’t even want my husband to hear me say that weight when we went in to have my son. I remember taking my son to the zoo for the first time and hearing a little boy ask his mom why my belly was so big, I honestly felt like I could crawl in a hole and never come out.
Well 2 years after my son was born I found out I had a really bad herniated disc and needed surgery right away. While I was in the process of recuperating I found out I was full fledge diabetic. I tried very hard to keep it under control but I still could not loose much weight. I got myself down to 190lbs but guess what it all came back.
Once I had my second son I decided I needed to do something about my weight so I decided to look into wls and honestly was very scared what they would say. Everyone was super nice and my surgeon steered me in the direction of RNY. I was hesitant but I kept going to at least see if I qualify. Well I did and I had RNY 7/3/2017 and honestly it has been the best decision of my life. I did not drop weight fast I am only 3 1/2 months out and only lost 40 lbs but that is 40lbs I could not do on my own. It is still very hard for me to pick the right choice when I eat but I try my hardest. I may not be the ideal patient but I am finding what is working for me and loving my new life. I have more energy and not afraid to wear nice clothes. Thank you for listening.
I’ve shared my story before with everyone but for the newbies. Here it goes. When I was 5 years old I had a knot show up on my right shoulder that was malignant melanoma they removed it and after I started gaining weight But ever since I was in 6th grade I’ve been bigger then everyone else. Also my whole life I’ve dealt with back and leg pain. Sometime worse then others. I broke my ankle when I was 35 and had to wear a cast. By the time I got the cast off my back and legs were killing me. The cast and the way I had to move around caused it to hurt. Well the cast went and the pain didn’t. So with a MRI they found out I have Spinal Bifida Occulta, my spine is fused in my lower back within that area 2 buldging,and 2 herniated disc, and Epidural Lamatosis. The pain is hell at times. Well while dealing with my back I got real bad sick and was put in the hospital to find out. I did have a enlarged Lymph node in the middle of my sternum. The surgeon went in at the collar bone to biopsy the lymph node. While in there he touched a nerve that paralyzed my vocal cord that left me without a voice. Oh and didn’t get a good sample. 2.5 weeks later I had surgery again. This time another biopsy to get to the same area. Another Surgeon went in to my side through my ribs into my lungs laparoscopically to get another lymph node sample and where it was at it couldn’t get to it. So he had to end up cutting me 12″ on my right side and collapse my lung. That also caused nerve damage and pain. All of ended up being Scarcoidosis, Chung-Strauss Syndrome, and Wegners Syndrome. The treatment is high dosages of long term of steroids plus a organ anti rejection medicine to lower my immune system. I took them for 3 years. One of the side effects was gaining weight. The extra weight caused me to be almost bed ridden. I hurt constantly.
My Dr sent me to a Neurosurgeon to be evaluated and he would not do surgery because there is nothing they can do because the damage Is a birth defect. The only way to get some of the pain to go away was lose weight. So I had already seen one Dr. to talk about WLS and he said No because of my autoimmune diseases. His worry was that my stomach would leak. I waited about a year and I asked my PCP if I could seek a 2nd opinion. She agreed as she the first time. So I went to another and I was a candidate for WLS. Instead of 6months of weight loss I had to do 8 and I had to be off of the steroids and the immune suppressant.. At 5months before WLS I was taken off the steroids and a month before WLS taken off of the organ anti rejection medication. I had VSG surgery on Aug 9, 2016. I lost 54lbs preOp. WLS so far has helped with my pain. I still have to take pain meds but the amount of pain has lessened. I’m no longer having to be in the bed and I have more energy and mentally capable of doing more. Its really been a God send. So my CW 203 HW 379 SW 326 GW 198 and im 14 months out. Sorry this was so long. I had another Bio but I wanted to go into to a lil more detail. Sorry also I’m not a writer so please excuse the punctuations and spelling. I just wanted y’all to know more of my journey and how this came about. Be Blessed!!!