Today is my five year surgiversary. What I posted three years ago (printed below) remains true today (except that about a year and a half ago I upped by goal weight by five pounds at the request of my wife who thought that I was too skinny when I was between 175 and 180 pounds):
It has now been two full years since I had my gastric bypass (RNY) surgery on November 12, 2013 at the Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston. I can safely say that having this surgery was (along with my decision to marry my wonderful wife and have two sons) the best decision of my life. Although the surgery itself, and the liquid diet right afterwards, was not fun, the physical pain from the surgery was over after a few days and I was able to return to work (part time) just six days after surgery. I got down to my goal weight about 9-10 months after my surgery, and have been 5-10 pounds under my goal weight ever since.
Quite frankly, I have been lucky, I lost weight fairly quickly after the surgery, I have not had any medical complications, and it has not been very difficult at all for me to maintain my current weight. I am so very thankful to my wife and my surgeon for supporting me on this amazing journey to becoming thin and healthy.
More importantly, and I especially say this to the newbies, my 125-130 pound weight loss has brought on a truly amazing positive change in my life. I feel so much more healthy, I am told that I look great, my blood pressure is way down (to about 110/60), I am off a prescription medicine that I was on before surgery, and I believe that I will live much longer now that I am no longer overweight. I enjoy life so much more now that I do not get tired, hot and sweaty whenever I am active. I hike; I walk; and I feel blessed with a new ability to be active. I no longer worry that if I sit in a wooden chair that it will collapse, that the seatbelt on a plane might not fit, that when I enter a room people will immediately judge me for being fat, and that I cannot buy clothes except in a “big men's store” (Men’s sized large available everywhere works just fine now, thank you).
I do not feel that I suffer at all in what I can eat every day – I just eat a balanced diet in which just about everything is OK in moderation. I can and do go out to dinner regularly and enjoy all kinds of food and wine. Although I do not formally count calories or record what I eat now that I on maintenance, I can tell you at the end of the day everything that I ate and drank that day, and about how many calories each of these items had. I very rarely dump or need to throw up. Most importantly for me, I weigh myself every morning and if I go above 180, then I cut my food intake, and if I go below 175, then I increase my food intake. I will never go above my goal weight – never! (My wife calls me stubborn; I like to think of it as being persistent).
I decided to have the gastric bypass surgery so that I could live long enough to see my sons (who are in their low twenties now) get married and have children, and so that I could grow old with my wife and (hopefully) retire some place nice. Before the surgery, I knew that with my high weight it was just a question of time before I had a heart attack (or stroke) and possibly died – probably before I turned 60 (I am 54 years old now). I did and do not want to die, and if surgery can help me lose weight and live longer, then bring it on!
I write this not to praise myself, but to encourage others to seek gastric bypass if you are truly overweight and cannot lose the weight through normal diets. Gastric bypass is an amazing and wonderful journey.