To say the last year has been easy would be a lie but was gastric bypass worth it? Absolutely! Let me tell you a little bit about my journey.
I received the gastric bypass on my birthday, July 16,2019. I was excited because I struggled with my weight all my life. This was a decision I didn't take lightly. I spoke with my doctor about it for more than a year before going through with it. I did my research and asked all the questions I could think of. I got nervous several times and went back and forth with myself for a little while.
The reason I decided on getting the weight loss surgery is because I have been very sick for 10 plus years. I have seen my doctor and had every test you could think of to figure out why I was in pain daily and fatigued all the time. I was at a point that life didn't matter and it wasn't worth it anymore. I was depressed and anxious all the time. I was suicidal because no doctor could figure out what was going on. Most doctors just told me my weight could be the problem with my health issues. I tried for several years to go to the gym, watch what I eat and lose some of my excess weight. Mind you I needed to lose at least 80 lbs after 4 children.
I suffered for years. Even as a child I was constantly sick. I followed through with the gastric bypass in hopes that life would have some kind of quality to it again and I could be that active mom again and enjoy my life. My life consisted of me being in bed 90% of the time and heart palpitation when standing or walking. I would be short of breath, dizzy, weak and fatigued all day every day. After having the bypass done I felt great for the first 6 weeks. I struggled mentally because food had always been my comfort. It was how I dealt with my emotions and feelings and worked my way through them. Now it's not there and so emotionally I did struggle.
After the first 6 weeks, I questioned if I did the right thing and even considered having it reversed at my year mark if I wasn't any better. I got really sick, I became unemployed, I missed out on my children's activities and I became even more bed ridden. I was losing weight and that felt great. I found a new doctor when I had had all I could take.
She ran blood work and sent me to every specialist that she could think of. I was hospitalized for several weeks and went through every test imaginable. Nothing came up. Everyone would tell me it's a bad reaction to the bypass. I didn't believe that because 10 years prior to my surgery I struggled with the same symptoms so it couldn't be the bypass. I was finally sent to an immunologist and much to my surprise, this was the last place my doctor knew to send me. After this we were at a brick wall. After many blood tests, allergy testing and immune testing we finally have it!!!
I was diagnosed one month ago with an immune deficiency. I have probably suffered with this all my life after reviewing my medical history as a child. I was diagnosed with S.A.D. (specific antibody deficiency). My body makes antibodies to fight off infections and bacterias but my antibodies don't work, leaving me with no immune system and vulnerable to recurrent infections.
Because of this I have had many many surgeries and almost felt like a pin cushion. Now I have an answer and a treatment. I receive Immunoglobulin infusion therapy 2 times a month. I sit in a small room with an IV hooked up to plasma and I sit for several hours. I just received my first treatment and I feel so great and I am starting to wean off my nausea medicines and pain meds.
With all of that said, I just want you to know that I am living my best life since being diagnosed and starting treatment and I am 120lbs lighter and I have so much energy and getting to actually enjoy my weight loss. I had to walk through a storm to get to the sunshine but having the bypass saved my life in more ways than one. If I hadn't had it done most doctors would keep looking at my weight as ALL my problems, and I wouldn't be the mom I am able to be right now. I am active, I play softball, I just recently started going back to the gym and lifting weights and I feel free!!! I love myself again and I am so happy I made the decision that I did 1 year ago on my actual birthday. I had a wonderful staff that was so sweet and caring in a very nice facility. I would tell anyone that is considering weight loss surgery it is hard mentally the first several months but if you really want change and stick with it you can get through the mental part and have a better life. I eat normally now but I have learned to push away and make better choices with food. It is a tool that can really help you.
Thank you so much for all your help and patience with me when I was making my decision. It was the best thing I ever did!!!
Here's a few before's and after Pictures for you!!
These are just some of my logged journey pics. I will have to get a more recent one for you and send it. I am so grateful for all of your help and that in the end the struggle was worth it all!!!
Dr. Elmo Aramburo
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