Journey of a Fat Girl

 

As I began to trace back the beginnings of my struggle with my weight, I have come to the conclusion that I was a fat fetus. Weighing in at almost 10 pounds upon my butt first entry into the world, I have no proof of ever being a “normal” size since. I even found a faded photograph myself at 2 years old in a yellow bikini, and there were fat rolls oozing out of material even then. There is not a single school picture to be found that doesn’t have me as the biggest kid, adorned in the ugliest clothes possible, as that is all they had in my size.

By the end of high school I was a champion dieter and pound looser. My earliest diet memory is that of a humiliating weigh in at a Weight Watchers meeting at the age of 5. The one part of dieting I could never master was keeping the weight off. I would lose 50 pounds but would turn around and gain 75. This cycle went on for years until, by my late 30’s, I was tipping the scales in excess of 600 pounds. I had lost my champion title for sure.

Serious measures had to be taken. There was no calorie counting or exercising, I could barely make a trip to the bathroom without heart palpitations, that was going to fix this. Then I lost my father to complications of his deathly morbid obesity, and a year later my youngest sister as well. So, after a lot of research and sleepless nights, I made the decision to have gastric bypass surgery. As excruciating as wrestling with the decision was, it was the easy part.

The insurance company, oh the insurance industry, don’t you just love them. I hope my sarcasm is obvious here. My husband and I argued, cried, begged and if we had the resources would have tried bribing them to get an approval. It is beyond my comprehension the lack of foresight the average insurance company employee processes. To me it is common sense that a woman weighing as much as an entire family would have medical complications, especially one with multiple auto-immune disorders. But miracle of all miracles, or just dumb luck, we spoke with a sympathetic adjuster who decided to actually investigate the advantages of the surgery for my specific case. And we have approval. Of course now I am petrified and ready to back out, but even backing up is hard when you can’t fit through the doors.

My surgery date was set for March 15, 2005, the date I now refer to as my new birthday. I had one of the best surgeons, skills and beside manner, and was out of the hospital 4 days later already 45 pounds down. 1 month goes by and I have lost 89 pounds. And by the 6th month mark I had lost 160 pounds.

To date I have lost 440 pounds, and feel like I am living an entirely different life. Do I recommend this journey to everyone with a weight issue? Absolutely not, but for me it was a matter of life and death. My only memory of my former self is enough excess skin to make a set of luggage, and there is no way you can convince me that my fight with Lupus and Fibromyalgia isn’t aided by the loss of the weight. This is just my journey as a “Spoonie” and it is far from over. In fact, in some ways, I think it has just begun.

Article written by Staff Writer, TammySue Davis

TammySue lives in North Carolina with her husband and two youngest daughters.  She also has a married daughter and two grandchildren.  She is the owner of an event planning and catering company and lives with Lupus, Neuro-Sarcoidosis and Fibromyalgia.  Through it all, she lives life with a determined sense of humor and huge belly laughs.

©2019butyoudontlooksick.com
  • Thanks so much for ALL the comments, I enjoy hearing from all sides of an issue and opening up an honest dialog. I am in no way advocating gastric surgery for everyone who struggles with obesity, for me, it was a long researched and contemplated decision, that saved my life. I usually tell people my surgeon rearranged the plumbing to give me the chance to rearrange my thinking. Weight issues have and will always be a hot bed of controversy and emotion, and I would never presume to speak for all who suffer on the obese spectrum. I still struggle everyday with my mind set and body image. Again thanks to everyone, and if there is any questions I can answer or support I can give my email is:
    [email protected]
    TammySue

  • Beverly

    Your article really struck home with me. I, too, have grown up battling my weight. I say “way to go, girl” You alone have to make the choice what to do when you medically need to lose the weight. This is, however, a sight for chronically ill people – most with some type of auto immune ilness, therefore I feel compelled to share my own story. I had my stomach stapled in the mid eighties when I was in my early 30’s. I dropped the wieght as predicted. I was thrilled to be in normal size clothes and I have to admit it changed my life. I went back to school and earned my degrees and was a busy active person. I did, however, have malnutrition mostly from lack of protien. When I realized this, I began getting vitamin shots and monitoring the variety of foods. Some I tolorated and some I couldn’t keep down but I managed the issues and with watching my calories and excersize, I was extremely happy with my choice.

    Next life chapter – I was diagnosed with lupus and fibro in 95 and spent the better part of 6 years in and out of hospitals with seizures, heart involvement, blindness and so on and so on. I was put on permanent disability and began trying to figure out how I was going to manage my life and illness. Luckily I have a wonderul husband who took it upon himself to learn everything about my diseases and took charge of my health management. At least my weight was still okay, right? Although I had constant nausea and many bouts of vomiting blood, it was accepted that it went with the disease.

    Six years later, I began living on chicken and stars soup because it would go down. After many weeks of this the doctors began to look for the cause. At this point I could barely get liquids down and I was literally starving to death – pale skin, no energy for activities of daily living and slept all the time. They dicided to perform a test to see why I couldn’t eat or drink. As most of you with Lupus know, inflammation is a big part of what happens inside our bodies. My opening in my stomach was smaller than a pencil. At this point most surgeons wanted nothing to do with me and a large teaching university I went to in so. California didn’t give me any hope. Mind you I was on a massive dose of steroids at the time and they didn’t work on the inflammation at all. I finally found a wonderfull sergeon who was willing to take a chance on operating on me. The stapeling was reversed and I could finally get nourishment once again.

    Over the years since them I continue to fight my chronic pain and numerous complications, but I once again battle with my weight. The numerous drugs and steroids I have had to be on keep me alive and that is the most precious thing I have. The most ironic part is that I had only married my husband two years before I got sick and I looked and felt great. I don’t look like that now, but my husband says that I am more beautiful than. our wedding day.

    I do not intend for my story to rain on anyone’s parade, but most reputable doctors will no longer do any weight loss surgery – including the band – on anyone with an auto immune diseases because of cases like mine. This turns out to be a common problem with us. I have noticed that even the commercials for the lap band proceedures explicitly state that it is not for people with auto immune illnesses.

    This is a personal dicision for everyone and I am not trying to use scare tactics. I have no predictions but only caution for you to let your doctor take a good look at every element of your health and together make the discision that will have the healthiest for you.

    I applaud your courage so keep on fighting. I have up and downs with my weight but I always try to remember that my outside shell is not who I am. You are a beautiful person and when people stare or judge you, it is usually because they are insecure or shallow or both. Keep us in the loop and good luck.

  • Renea Popdan

    TammySue,
    You are a very beautiful woman, both inside and out!!!

  • Gail Ruff

    TammySue, You’re my hero. I may be wrong but I think those who have surgery for weight loss get little respect, but I’m sure it still takes a great deal of discipline to loose 440 lbs. You go girl!

  • Darlene

    I am in the morbidly obese camp after nearly 7 years of steroid use for my asthma and COPD. My list of issues is so freaking long that even my cardiologist has said “what else could possibly go on with you?”….and yet, none of them want to see how they can help. I have adrenal insufficiency and the chronic infections keep me tired, fatigued and weak. Toss in a serious batch of sleep disorders and CFS and fibro and OA and there are days when I wonder why I bother. I am striving to be as healthy as possible. On my own with portion reduction and whatever exercise I can get in between my naps, I am down about 60-70 lbs. But I have a long way to go. And the skin infections? I’m thrilled with those who succeed with WLS and by that, I mean are able to lose and maintain and their bodies absorb what is needed so they are functional. I would just love a day with some energy.

  • Hi TammySue…

    Thank you so much for sharing your painful struggle, and the positive outcome you’ve had!

    We have quite a bit in common…

    I’ve recently lost 4 clothing sizes after diagnosing myself (I went undiagnosed for 25 years despite seeing over 100 doctors) with Cushing’s Disease, a hormonal disorder causing uncontrollable weight gain.

    I had surgery to remove the pituitary (brain) tumor that caused it in 2006, and have discovered the wonderful pain management medication for fibromyalgia called Savella, which suppresses my appetite as well.

    I love what you’ve done with ButYouDon’tLookSick! I’ve been spreading the word in whatever way I can as well through TakeUsSeriously.org.

    Where in NC are you? I live in Winston-Salem.

    Love and light,
    Ellen

  • sammi

    Thank YOU Amy for such a well written eye-opening response. I must tell you I am shocked and yet fascinated by what you have written. I have been complaining for years about the lack of nutrition in our food … and how we have to eat more to satisfy our bodies’ need for nutrients. However, like many spoonies, I do not have the energy to fight a major fight against corporations and food coops. I just eat what I can that is the most nutritious I can find.

  • Melissa

    TammySue, I applaud you for your courage to do what was right for you and your family. Sounds like to tried different avenues before finding the one that worked for you. Congrats for sticking with it and not giving up or justifying why you should stay as you were.

    Thank you for sharing your story – your courage and determination are inspiring!

  • Kathleen Auen

    Tammy Sue~Thank you so much for sharing your personal struggle with your weight. It brought tears to my eyes, as I just weighed in this morning at more than I’ve ever weighed. I know all of this extra weight is not helping my OA, RA or fibromyalgia. I need help!!!! Will you contact me, please?? Thanks.

  • Steph

    Personally, TS, I think this was a very PERSONAL decision that you made and no one has the right to tell you that it was correct or incorrect. I have seen your transformation in person and I know you did what you had to do to be there for your children and your grandchildren.

    I think you are courageous and strong and am proud to call you my friend.

    And by the way, you look FABU!

  • Lillian

    TammySue,
    Thank you so much for sharing your story. I’ve been on the other side of the spectrum for all my life — the super skinny side. I can tell you that there is discrimination on both sides of the spectrum and for a long time it didn’t matter how much I ate or exercised — I couldn’t stop being super skinny! Thankfully, through athletics and good nutrition I was able to mature from a bean-pole into a lean-muscled young woman…

    In any case, I wanted to thank you for truly sharing the realities with which you have lived. A very good family friend (a “big sister”) had the bypass several years ago after a story such as yours and her life has changed just as much as yours. I think that your determination and drive is wonderful and probably a big part of why you have been able to thrive. Like many others’ comments, I also know people who’ve had the surgery but are now larger than before because they didn’t follow post-op instructions or maintain a more healthful lifestyle that includes exercise.

    Once again, bravo to you, lady! 🙂

  • Teri Schultz

    Oh TammySue! I did not know all this about you. You go, girl!!!!!

  • Penny Susan

    TammySue,

    In my eyes, you are a hero. Thank you so much for sharing.

    I, too, like so many other women have battled, am battling and will probably always continue to battle….a weight problem….

    I guess I’m one of the lucky ones that doesn’t have a chronic illness to deal with every day…but, to be honest there isn’t a day that doesn’t go by and I wonder am I really just living on borrowed time….

    I just really wanted to say thank you and I think you are one awemazing woman.

  • Theresa

    I can understand growing up as a fat kid and going to weight watchers in high school for me, but unfortunately I am on the other side of the eating disorder now.Went from being fat to anorexic even with being on prednisone for 20 plus years. But I congrads you on your success!

  • Amy

    I am glad this worked for you & that you are happy with it. I would NEVER have this done, for tons of reasons, but I’m happy for those of you who like what it has done for you.
    I tell people I was born upside-down, backwards, & a size 16 & it went downhill from there, & that’s why I’m an only child! I entered the world at 8# 10 oz 24″ long & a picture of me at 15 mo shows me bursting out of a dress due to fat. Like you, I never knew what it was to be small.
    But I was ALWAYS active. After school, I did chores, ran errands, helped with housework, ran, played, biked, etc. I wasn’t fast. I sure as heck wasn’t coordinated. My knees were constantly in some state of brush-burn from new to scarring up, & I could fix other kids’ scrapes & cuts by age 7 1/2. I sprained my ankles & wrists so many times that I was expert with an Ace wrap by age 8. Even though I started helping as a caregiver by age 9 (& could, as any good girl in the 50s/60s from a fat family could do, put a full simple meal on the table at that age), I spent many hours swimming in the community pool. I lived in a place with serious hills, & walked them routinely on errands, to & from school, to see friends, & of course to sled ride in winter! I looked like I was 15 when I was 11, & had ALL the female traits of a 15 yr old by that age. And I was fat.
    Mom hadn’t done much but join in the general family nagging, but when I was 11, she finally decided to have a pediatrician, not our (quack IMO) family doctor check me out. He discovered Hashimoto’s, warned Mom I really did have migraines (my family didn’t believe kids could have headaches, a relatively common belief at the time), put me on a 1500 cal diet in defiance of my mother’s saying that was too much food, & I lost NEARLY all the weight. I couldn’t get down any further, but the doctor believed I was “cheating.” I tried to eat less but only dropped a couple more pounds. It bounced back & forth with me always about 20% higher than they thought I should be.
    Then the pediatrician died. I had to go to the quack again, who took a thyroid test while I was still on the last of the Rx, & said it was normal & I didn’t need thyroid medication. I wouldn’t receive treatment for over 20 yr until an infertility workup done overseas showed it existed & I was given thyroid replacement again.
    But it was too late. Years of 1000 cal or less a day diets had, according to the research endocrinologist who re-diagnosed the Hashimoto’s, trashed my metabolism to where I’d never lose all the weight I wanted or needed to lose.
    Now, I no longer worry about it. Heck, when I’d lost a great deal of weight, I was still considered morbidly obese, but was doing 1-3 hr/day of exercise (on videos; no exercise class wanted me there as I was “too fat,” & to the quip of, “I thought that was why exercise classes existed, to help people who are too fat.” I was told not to be a [email protected]$$). I did square dancing at least weekly, along with folk dancing & ballroom dancing lessons, all of which had 2-3 hour sessions, & we went dancing weekly; we took hikes; we even ran several days a week; & both my husband & I could ge only so far down. We were probably more fit than many thinner people, & I KNOW that activity level & healthy eating kept me able to work for 22 yr with fibro, 12 of those also with CFS, on top of the migraines, irritable bowel/bladder, TMJ, fibrocystic breast disease, & traumatic arthritis (by age 18, all those sprained joints were predicting rainstorms more accurately than my migraines). I’ve had employers try to force this surgery on me. I’ve read of & met too many people whose pain was under control when they were fat, but whose pain got exponentially worse from WLS & didn’t improve (& sometimes worsened) over time.
    Most of all, WLS, even the roux en y, guarantees compliant patients a weight loss of only 60-80% of their EXCESS body weight, & few insurers will even pay to have the belly skin lopped off without any cosmetic enhancements (called a panniculectomy, I believe), which removal might take them a few percentage points closer to their goal. Yes, some make it all the way, but most don’t, & many get so discouraged they overeat, stretch the food pouch, & regain all or most of the weight.
    There are other things that give me pause, which I mention so those of you who have had the surgery & aren’t aware can be aware & prepare. Osteoporosis is rampant in WLS patients, because of the surgical starvation, as are other vitamin & mineral deficiencies. After 5 years, arthritis returns & often worsens, necessitating the very joint replacements these patients were told wouldn’t be necessary if they had WLS. Skin loses elasticity & aging accelerates. Many WLS patients have brain fog, even develop dementia of aging, because their bodies begin rapid aging after 5 – 10 yr. All of hem end up with diabetes in 5-10 yr, & high blood pressure shows up sooner. This is from the constant infusion of stress hormones as the body tries to cope with the WLS changes; cortisol releases glucose into the body, & just as pigging out & fat-induced insulin resistance deplete the body’s ability to produce enough insulin, so does cortisol flooding a body with glucose-plus, at first, low blood sugar is common as the body over-produces insulin to get the sugar into the cells, then there just isn’t enough production anymore. For a while, that’s balanced by lower intake, but that doesn’t last. Cortisol also raises blood pressure & heart rate & interferes with sleep. Getting off CPAP doesn’t last long, if it even happens in the first place.
    In other words, you get WLS to help control the complications of obesity – diabetes, high blood pressure, high heart rate, stress, strain on joints, avoid joint replacement surgery…& in 5-10 years, you get all that plus osteoporosis, premature aging, & the complications of all that loose skin & the infections it can cause, & infections increase stress & risk going to every part of your body, which causes more complications. Oh, let’s not forget the dental complications, much of it from the endless barfing after the surgery, even with strict adherence to the diet. Teeth rot when you toss your pouch rations regularly.
    Most WLS patients are far heavier than I am, & even I’d have problems with skinfold infections, esp. when you’re malnourished. You are prescribed vitamins, which come right back out if you can’t absorb them or the ounce of food you’re permitted every 4-6 hours. WLS patients are a fixture in ERs, getting IV fluids from losing too much from either the “front end” &/or the “back end.” And I’ve heard WLS doctors play nice to the patient & come back to conference rooms, laughing about how much money they’re making on lazy American fat people who won’t diet, showing their true feelings for their WLS patients – contempt.
    Sorry, I’m not buying them their next yacht.
    A neighbor of mine had this done about 10 yr ago. He wasn’t very old, I’d say early 30s max & I’m very good at estimating ages. He lost a lot of weight quickly, but is still in the morbidly obese range. His dark, wavy hair is now grey & he keeps it buzz-cut to hide the extent of hair loss; what hair he has is mostly white. He walks like an 80 yr old in obvious agony with each step, the gait is typical of people with severe hip arthritis. I could tell, through his clothes, that this wasn’t helped by the huge amount of loose skin he kept tucked under huge, long shirts & baggy pants. He now wears thick glasses, when he didn’t need glasses before. I’ve heard of a member of my church (I can’t attend now, I caregive my husband which puts church out of the question for now) has the same problems, that his doctor has said he has acceleraed aging from WLS. A friend of mine knows 2 others with the exact same problems.
    So, am I a “diet & exercise always work” type? NO. They DON’T work, but the ONLY obesity research you’ll see out there is of 3 types;
    1. Comparing & contrasting different diet & exercise options, with or without counseling, group therapy, family support, antidepressants, existing diet pills, hypnosis, acupuncture-same song, nothing new.
    2. Comparing/contrasting different forms of WLS but only up to 5 yr postop; silencing reports that show what really happens to many WLS patients after 5 yr., & blaming patients for complications & failures.
    3. Adapting dangerous drugs to be reclassified as weight loss drugs, while stopping things that show promise (rimonabant is one glaring example; Chantrix is far more dangerous but is on the market); NSRIs & SSRIs are more dangerous; but they do little if anything to cause weight loss, or do so while causing complications that are more dangerous than staying fat.
    What would I like them to do? A few years ago, there was a research paper released that suggested a possible viral etiology, but it was laughed at over the airwaves; medical science weighed in on the subject with derision; the discoverers were discredited & I’m not even sure they could get jobs. If this sounds familiar, think CFS & XMRV-that retrovirus was discovered in 1991 by MDs who were discredited, run out of the profession, & their lab tech is totally bedbound with CFS. There are people in 3rd world countries who are lucky to get one meal a day, yet are obese. So, tell me again how is this from pigging out? Families have fat dynasties, so to speak. Fat people get serious illnesses like cancer & are still so fat when they die that funeral costs go way up to bury them, even to cremate, & don’t think about donating your body, b/c despite the desperate need for obesity research, medical schools won’t take fat cadavers.
    On the flip side, everyone knows of thin people, including most competitive eaters, who can put down up to 10,000 cal/day & remain normal sized to thin, possibly a little pudgy at best; people who don’t exercise anything but the dialing finger for food delivery, the TV remote, the mouse button/keyboard, & gaming controllers (NOT Wii or Kinect etc) yet are normal sized to thin. While cholesterol researchers actually look at families that can put down tons of fat & not have high cholesterol & compare what they find w/ people who diet & exercise & even w/ cholesterol lowering drugs, still run high cholesterols, & they compare them. But when it comes to fat people – again, MOST FAT PEOPLE ARE WOMEN, this discrimination we see with research into autoimmune diseases that mostly affect women, CFS, fibro, etc., continues on, & the only solutions offered are degrading to the person. I know for a fact that in socialized medicine countries, fat people are rationed out of care until they lose weight, & if they do, they are still denied things like coronary bypass & joint replacement for severe arthritis because, having once been fat, they caused their own problem & deserve no help.
    Sorry about the rant, but people need the facts about WLS. Fat people are made to feel so badly about just living that they’re condiioned to be ripe to accept any solution medicine decides not to withhold from them. We’re afraid to demand more. We decide to blame ourselves despite evidence all around us that, while pigging out can cause obesity, it doesn’t in everyone, & stopping overeating doesn’t result in weight loss. Listen, by the time those weight loss show contestants are partway through their time being abused, they’re eating 10% of the calories some of them were putting in, which is too much of a cut in intake & shuts down metabolism. They’re exercising close to 8 hr/day. When they get kicked off for not losing weight, they regain it quickly, or are unable to lose much more afterwards despite sticking w/ the program. Would any thin person eat 1200 cal/day or less while exercising 4-8 hr/day, 7 days/week? When would you sleep? Shop? Clean house? See friends or family? Do something to relax? How long, realistically, could anyone keep that up?
    Weight is, at its most fundamental level, a women’s rights issue, & needs to be treated like one.
    60% OF AMERICANS ARE OVERWEIGHT/OBESE, THAT IS A MAJORITY, TIME WE ACTED LIKE ONE & DEMANDED MEANINGFUL WEIGHT LOSS RESEARCH INCLUDING EXPLORATION OF A VIRAL ETIOLOGY FOR AT LEAST SOME CASES.

  • Fibromom

    Thanks for sharing your story keep up the good work xoxo

  • Kellye

    Thank you for sharing your story and great job on the weightloss. Like you, I was the biggest kid in all my classes and frankly.being a kid sucked due to the teasing and cruelty of others coupled by intense self loathing.

    I began my weightloss surgery journey on 9/30/97 with stomach staplin. I lost very well until I hit a wall and stopped then started to gain. Turns out my ring was gone which rendered my surgery useless.

    I was revised to the gastric bypass on 5/22/2000 so almost eleven years ago and don’t regret it although I have had some major issues along the way. I hate the excess skin and the problems that go along with it. Honestly, at times I think I traded one set of problems for another yet if I had it to do all over again I would have the surgery again in a heartbeat!

  • Thank you for sharing your journey with us! 🙂

  • Toni

    Thank you for sharing!

    I started my life being 6 lbs. by the time I was 6 mths old I was 32lbs & started my 1st diet. I roller coasted though life. After being on Predinsone for 11 yrs I had ballooned up to 350lbs. I said enough was enough.

    I too had a Rue En Y on August 26, 2010. I’m 5 1/2 mths out & down to 230 lbs. I still have 100 lbs to go, but I’ll make it.

    As you said this is not for everyone, but for some it is a last resort to getting back their life.

  • Tami Brotosky

    Wow what a journey. I don’t think people realize how much courage goes into trying to adjust your entire life to improve it. Change is terrifying. Many times it feels safe to stay with old patterns, even if they are causing misery beyond belief. Change can bring a better or worse state of things.

    I applaud every person that is willing to step out over the edge of their present life to move towards the possibility of something better.

  • Teri Kennedy

    Thank you for sharing your stories! Weight is a serious issue that takes many forms, has many causes, and of course different remedies for each individual. What breaks my heart is that so many people emotionally beat themselves up for failures that are truly beyond their control. One very highly recommended web/seminar is called Sugar: The Bitter Truth. It is by a pediatric endocrinologist from UCSF. it takes about an hour and a half but worth every bit of info about our American food supply. It was a HUGE eye opener for me.
    Another interesting thing I saw on this years “Biggest Loser” show is how many of these morbidly obese people had already had the by-pass and lap band surgeries previously and it didn’t work. I didn’t think that was possible! I thought once the anatomical changes were done it was permanent.
    My educated guess is that there is not one “single” treatment or “magic pill” to address obesity. I think it is a multi-physiologic, psychological and environmental issues. It must be a holistic approach geared to the specific individuals needs. It is easy for outsiders to point fingers and make assumptions but I believe it is not that easy a diagnosis and no easy treatment. Just as Lupus and other auto-immune illnesses that are not easily diagnosed, or many times misdiagnosed.
    After you watch the webinar by the Pediatric Endocrinologist you realize what has been done to a whole generation of people w/out their knowledge. It is especially evident with infants and toddlers that are morbidly obese. Watch this short film and lose the guilt along with those that pre-judge and have NO clue.
    Never give up trying to stay healthy. Like cancer, we are learning more and more every year with research. More research is needed. The best we can do is advocate for ourselves and our family members and seek out whatever it is our bodies need to be healthy.

  • Rose (twitter name @RosaryBeadz)

    Great article! I too actually had gastric bypass surgery in 2004. I was only 18 at the time and people thought I was crazy and way too young. But I come from a family where members were very overweight on both my Mom and Dad’s side of the family suffering from things like diabetes and high blood pressure. I had myself a one way ticket to that lifestyle and knew I needed to do something to get off that ride. Making the decision to have the surgery was to this day still the best thing I’ve ever done for myself. I don’t recommend it for everyone but I wouldn’t change my decision for anything. I am better off today than I would have been even with my spoonie lifestyle had I not gotten that surgery. Thanks for sharing your story!

  • Chelle

    Thank you for sharing a very personal journey. Congrats on your success!

  • Thank you for sharing TammySue. You’re beautiful no matter your size.

  • I hear you too. I always have been obese, as a kid and adult, but I only weighed 3 pounds when born,
    I allowed my Physician in 2002 to talk me into a lap-band. I know this tool has worked on many, but not on me! I have had 3 surgeries to correct issues with my band and I am over it! I wish I had known better and went for bypass as that is what insurance wanted me to do and I fought for my band until they said yes.
    It seems to me now that Bariatric surgeons are pushing gastric banding now. I look at some like Annie Lenox who has band, lost and now gained, but then again there is Sharon Osborne and she looks fabulous.
    All I have to say is to be sure you do your homework and think long and hard about what surgery will work for you!