Have you ever dreamt about living up to your full potential? I have, and that is the reason why I am getting Bariatric Surgery. My name is Stephanie and I am a 24 year old, spunky, creative and ambitious women. I love to sew, swim and participate in theater. However, as active as I am, I am still morbidly obese. This blog is meant to inspire, educate and relay the honest truth about Bariatric Surgery.

As for me, I began to gain weight after I graduated from high school and entered college. In high school, I did swim team, track and water polo, so I was very fit. So when I stopped the sports in college, I naturally began to gain weight. It was not until my Junior year though that my thyroid stopped working properly and I gained 50 lbs within two months. I became depressed and it got to the point where I stopped caring about my weight and tried to ignore it through eating food. Eventually, I transferred schools and began to feel better.

I became very motivated to lose the weight I had gained, and therefore tried every diet program that I could out there; from Weight Watchers, Medifast and Ideal protein to exercise like Curves. Then a year ago, my friend got the Gastric Sleeve and she kept telling me that it would change my life for the better. So I began to informally look into it but kept it at the back of my mind while I tried these other diets. No matter how much weight I loss the more I would gain back.

Finally, six months ago, my friend’s mom had lunch with me to talk to me about seriously thinking about weight loss surgery. She had the sleeve done ten years ago and told me how she never would have gone back to school or gotten a better job if it weren’t for her surgery. Through this inspiration and some frank talk, I decided to seriously look into getting surgery.

I began to research different programs in my area and even out of state. A lot of them were too expensive because my insurance does not cover anything weight loss related. I finally came upon the program at Willamette Valley Medical Center through McMinnville Surgical Associates. I was excited because they had major discounts for self pay and was a smaller but very knowledgeable hospital.

After a lot of research, I told my parents about the idea of having weight loss surgery and neither of them were supportive. They thought I was too young, didn’t weigh enough and it was too expensive. After a lot of educating, they agreed to support me in my weight loss surgery journey including helping me pay for it.

Now that you know a little bit about me, I hope that this blog will help inspire and educate those of you questioning if WLS is right for you, looking for support or have preconceived judgments as to what WLS is. I prepare to give the honest truth; the good, the bad and ugly, although I believe that it is important to generally stay positive. I look forward to sharing the rest of my story as I experience the ups and downs of Bariatric surgery.