I wound up getting to my goal weight of 118 in 8 months. But then I decided that I didn’t want to be so close to the top of my BMI range, although at this point, the BMI number was useless because so much of my body was muscle, rather than fat. But, I wanted some distance from 118. So, I kept going.
It was around January or February that I started to think about having plastic surgery to remove my loose skin. I had excess skin on my arms, legs, and stomach. My breasts look like 2 deflated hanging socks (sorry, perhaps TMI). I hated looking in the mirror even more like that, than I did at 221 pounds. But, I really was uncertain about getting plastic surgery. The main reason was that I did not have weight loss surgery to be skinny. I didn’t do it for my looks. I did it to be healthy. I did it so I would have the energy and ability to run around and play with my niece and nephews. To me, the plastic surgery was all about vanity. And the last thing I was, was vain. But, my mom, who had become my greatest supporter, felt like plastic surgery was the final leg of the journey I had been on. She knew that it was unhealthy for me to still not be able to look in the mirror. And so I met with a couple of different plastic surgeons and decided to have surgery April 1, 2014, 2 weeks shy of my one-year sleevaversary. I underwent a 6-hour operation and had a tummy tuck, inner thigh lift with lipo, and a breast lift with a fat graft, using the fat that was lipo’d from my thighs. I refused to have implants and felt this was a healthier way.
The plastic surgery compared to the gastric sleeve surgery were like night and day. It was a very long, very intense surgery and I wound up having complications. I won’t go into all of that here, as I don’t want to discourage anyone from having plastic surgery. In the end, I couldn’t be happier with my decision and I wouldn’t have changed a thing. All I can really say is that the this part of the journey was physically, the hardest part. It was in the weeks after the surgery that I got down to my lowest weight of 92 lbs. I was very close to the low end of the BMI range and it scared me. To be honest, I looked sick. My face was too thin and drawn. My legs were like sticks. I just didn’t look healthy. I have since put weight back on and am now averaging around 113-115, of which most of it is muscle. So, I’m at a very healthy range and my body seems to have accepted this weight as ok.
In the midst of recovering from surgery, I got laid off from my job as an online content manager. I was lucky to quickly find a job as a legal data analyst for one of the largest media companies. All along, though, I knew I know longer wanted to work in editing or legal research. I wanted to do something that could help people. I wanted to work with people like myself. People that were like the “old” me and I wanted to help them learn the things I had learned about myself. I wanted them to help them realize their worth and feel empowered and excited and determined. I wanted to help people on their weight loss journey and to not look at it as a huge challenge to be overcome, but a journey of ups and downs that would lead them eventually to an amazing place in their lives.
This is why I became a health and wellness life coach. My journey will never be over. It will take twists and turns, some good, some bad, some tragic, some exhilerating. But if I can help you on your own journey, that will make mine a little bit more worth it.