Lap Band Support – Paying It Forward Helps Me Keep Choosing The Carrot

by sandi on October 20, 2010

Just about every time I tell my story to someone else struggling with their own personal weight issues, and certainly every time I act as a mentor for someone who has just had lap band surgery I receive heartfelt “thank you’s”.  This gratitude is certainly more than enough to justify my continuing to give testimonials at my doctor’s seminars and to call all of you “newbies” out there.  Your comments on my blog also keep me going strong.  I feel like I have a community that has helped me to succeed at something I couldn’t do my entire life, and it just feels good to be able to give back and turn over the keys to the kingdom to someone else, allowing them to reap the same benefits.

Enjoying my new and improved life.

When I first starting giving testimonials at seminars and mentoring new patients I did it to stay close to the surgeon, close to the surgeon’s office close to a group of successful people I could continue to learn from.  Then I began truly understanding that I too was successful and could share my experiences and people could possibly learn from me.  Now I actually believe that is true.  After more than 6 years I think I finally get that I am not going to wake up one morning and once again weigh 424 pounds.  Not that I am cured of obesity, but I have it controlled as long as I continue to exercise daily and make reasonable food choices.  Not only do I have my obesity controlled, but I also have all of my co-morbidities controlled.  I no longer need a C-Pap machine to fight my sleep apnea, my blood pressure is excellent with no medication, the pain from the severe arthritis in my right knee is totally manageable as long as I exercise, I no longer take asthma medication, the scoliosis in my back does not cause me pain, and I fortunately never developed Type II diabetes.  I can once again go snorkeling and scuba diving and hike over lava rock to get to rural beaches on Hawaiian Islands.  I can plan a trip to Disneyland with my grand kids without needing to rent a scooter chair, or worrying whether I can “make it” through the day at the amusement parks.  I can plan on going on the rides with them and not worrying about fitting in the seats.  I can go out to restaurants and not worry whether I will fit in the chair with arms or be able to slide into the booth.  I fit in an airplane seat without a seat belt extender and without flopping over onto someone else’s seat.  I can buy clothing in any retail store and don’t need to shop in the “big girl’s” section or a specialty store.  I can go to the doctor’s office and get on the examining table without knocking it over.

I guess what all of this says is that I have my life back – I really get that THIS IS MY LIFE, that I will not wake up from this dream one morning only to have to take all that medication, and plan for all of those restrictions.  AND I want to share all of my accomplishments with anyone who will listen so that they can:

1.      Look at their own life and make a decision about how they choose to live it;

2.      Refer someone they love to me for inspiration and/or motivation

3.      Do whatever they can to make sure that lap band surgery is available as a treatment

4.      Understand how hopelessness can be turned into hopefulness and a new lease on life.

They still call to me.

Thank YOU for helping me choose the carrots.

All of this happens every time I tell my story.  In addition to all of this, when the choice is potato chips or a carrot stick it makes it much easier for me to choose the carrot.

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