Thursday, August 21, 2008

Why Surgery?

My upcoming weight loss surgery (WLS) is not a secret, although not everyone knows my plans. So I thought I would explain why I chose this route.

I've been skeptical of WLS for years. But, as I tried to diet and exercise on my own and with the help of a personal trainer and a weight loss support group - not to mention the countless attempts before that, I grew frustrated. Let's face it, I'm not getting any younger. It's not going to get easier. Then I looked around at overweight friends and family who are older than me. I decided that I could follow in their footsteps or do something about it. I want to get the most out of life and my weight has been holding me back emotionally, physically, and socially.

After my mother-in-law watched the WLS success of Guiding Light actress Caitlin Van Zandt, she asked me if I had considered the lap-band tool. It was the first time I didn't get defensive about some one's suggestion that I lose weight. I came home, enrolled in a WLS center info session, and researched like crazy.

I wanted to know what the surgery was like. I'm not the type to sign up for any elective procedure. I also wanted to know what life was like after the band. What would I be able to eat? What foods would I need to avoid? Could I still go out to restaurants? I learned that the band is a safe, minimally invasive tool that has had great success. I also learned that 95% of people who diet will gain the weight back (and then some). That's funny, I don't seem to recall that statistic being mentioned on any diet plans or exercise videos I've purchased. However the band, if used properly, helps keep the weight off.

I'm excited about my decision, and I'm already dreaming of cute, smaller sized clothing and lots of activity.

I'm not looking to the lap-band as a solution to all of my problems. It won't change the world around me as much as it will change the way I live in it. I believe it will be the missing piece in the lifestyle changes I am already making to help my outside better reflect my inside.

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