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A letter to my pre-op gastric bypass self

Dear Melissa,

So you made the decision to have gastric bypass surgery and you’ve got through what seems like the longest process ever to the point where you have now been put on the waiting list for surgery. I know you can’t stop wondering and thinking about what life is going to be like after surgery and trying to guess where you will end up weight wise.

Let me warn you that the two weeks of the pre-op liquid diet is the worst part. You will be fine for the first few days and then it’s going to be hell. I promise you every day that you get through will be one day closer to your surgery date. You will still be hungry, hungry like you have never been before because you are surviving on protein shakes and non-starchy vegetables. It will drive you crazy and you will have a meltdown on day 11. Don’t be too hard on yourself though because you will get through this with support, just don’t forget to ask for help when you need it.

Your surgery is going to go fine. You’re a bit worried about the anesthetic, I know but it’s okay you will get through. As you’re expecting the day of your surgery and coming out of the anesthetic won’t be much fun but just take the chance to relax your digestive tract has just been forever re-routed and all you need to do is rest.

The first sips of water and then Optifast after surgery will be filled with trepidation but you will be able to tolerate everything and you do such a great job measuring it out carefully to make sure you don’t have too much at once. There will be one minor hiccup after your surgery meaning you have to stay in another night but soon enough you’re back at home with your boys. The first week is tough pain and recovery wise but once you get past that it’s all up from there.

The next stages are interesting and it’s exciting moving back up through the dietary stages working your way up to what will be your new ‘normal’ way of eating. You aren’t going to have many issues with food at all and the careful approach you take in trying new things and being mindful with your portion sizes is really going to work to your advantage.

Your weight loss won’t be a consistent straight amount every week. Sometimes the weight loss will pause for a few weeks at a time and it will drive you crazy. Be assured that the weight loss will start up at a crazy pace again but your body just needs some time to recalibrate and figure out whats happening before it ditches anymore. You will get there in the end I promise.

You actually wouldn’t believe me if I told you how well you’re going to do and how quickly you are going to move through dress sizes. At one stage you will be dropping dress sizes in 5-6 weeks and you won’t be able to keep up with clothes that fit so just do the minimum in terms of clothing you need to to get through. Your progress pictures are really going to help you realise how well you are doing so keep taking them, they are great to look back on now.

Through this process you will say goodbye to an old and reliable friend, food but don’t worry too much about that you will have a freakout, get over it and make some new friends. You and lipstick are good friends now and you have quickly come to love your new obsession of all things beauty related.

People will be amazed when they see you, even sometimes after a couple of weeks they will see a big change that you won’t. You will get a bit bored (in the best way possible) of having people tell you how great you are doing. After a while this has just become so normal for you that people are a bit confused when you don’t get excited by their gushing over you anymore. Try to humor them and play along because I don’t think you realise the gravity of the change they can see in you.

You will reach your goal weight in a quick nine months after your surgery. It will seem a bit like a dream to start with and yes you will try on those size 8 (I know you’re not believing me now) and size 10 clothes a few times after buying them to make sure they still fit and its not some sick elabourate joke that the universe is playing on you.

Maintenance won’t be exactly what you’re expecting either. You’re thinking now that you will get to a specific weight and you will stay there. It doesn’t quite work like that. You will have a range of about three kilos that you range between and that’s okay. Once you reach your goal weight you remain determined to never go back to where you started.

I know where you are now you are worried, it’s daunting, failure seems like it could creep up on you and you really can’t imagine how life is going to be as a post-op gastric bypass patient. I just wanted to tell you that you are stronger than you know, you are ready for this absolutely 100 percent and you will do so much better than you imagined possible. People will even use the word ’inspiration’ to refer to you and that will still seem weird for sometime after people start using it to reference to you, yes you.

Keep focused, stay motivated and I’ll see you on the other side! The cliché is true the grass is greener on this side.


This Post was originally published on my blog Melissa Loses It 

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