Food ran my life for years. It started at a young age. The reason my family got together was for food!
When I was about seven years old, everyone would tell me how beautiful I was and that I should be a model. My mom worked for Jolene’s and she was able to get me in as a model for them. The confidence I had in myself at that time was GREAT! I loved people
By the beginning of 2012 I was 340 pounds and a BMI of 64! I had been married for over 6 years, we had tried to have a baby and even did fertility treatments for about 4 months with no luck. Life was not as grand as I had hoped it would be when I was younger. My husband Andy and I were a very lazy couple. Physically, we weren’t able to do much, due to our extremely large sizes, and collectively we weighed over 850 lbs.
I made the decision to change my life in December of 2012; I was fed up with where my life had ended up. I started looking in to WLS and found that Rocky Mountain Associated Physicians (RMAP) was the right place for Andy and I to go. They had a great “Risk and Benefits” class as well as a Monthly Support Groups (that has been a life saver for me). The RMAP team helped us with the process of paper work, other classes and insurance stuff we needed to do.
Tuesday January 8, 2013 was one of the worst days of my life. I got the devastating news that the man that raised me had passed away. I knew that he had struggled with diabetes and weight for his entire life. The thought that THAT had been what killed him is still on my mind every day. The next day I was walking through Costco with my Mother, getting ready for another BIG Family dinner, when I received a call from RMAP that made me cry. It was the APPROVAL I had been looking for and hopping for! This went from one of the worst weeks to one of the best moments in my life! I called Andy to let him know. We were so excited that our lives were going to be changed forever. We scheduled for Duodenal Switch surgery for February 13, 2013. This was going to be the best Valentines gift we could ever give each other.
Since Duodenal Switch surgery I have lost over 190 lbs.! I have been able to do anything and everything I want. I am no longer the fat girl scared to walk into a room and find a chair that has a few open on both sides. I no longer have to be the fat girl that can’t walk up the stairs because I will be out of breath half way up. I am able to run up and down them without falling or running out of breath! I am even able to go on ANY ride at Lagoon without being scared they will kick me off!
Thank you to everyone that has stood by me and helped me in this journey! Whether it has been in person, in support group, over the phone, or even through YouTube, you have all been amazing. The RMAP Facebook page, RMAP Forums, YouTube community, friends I have made and my family have all been so much more than I could have asked for as I have made this extremely difficult journey to a healthy and happier life style. I know my journey is not over and that I will still have struggles. But I also know that I am stronger than ever, and I can take on any challenge that life may throw at me. The Biliopancreatic Diversion with Duodenal Switch (DS) Weight-Loss surgery is the BEST decision I have ever made for myself. Now I am able to see Food as my fuel, not my comfort, my reward or my motivation. Thank you again, everyone, for all of your help.
Rebeka is a part of RMAP Patient Advocate Program. She has extended his support to those interested in learning more about weight-loss surgery. You can contact her at the resources listed above.