I want to offer a special thanks to Barbara
Rolls for sharing her story with us. Here is her story:
My name is Barbara Rolls. I am a nurse at the Medical Center
Hospital in Odessa, TX and have been for over 18 years. Those at the
hospital that I
have grown with that have retired and those that I still work with have
seen a different me. I say the new and improved me; my husband says that
Iím skin and bones. But I am me and feel great and if you see the person
I lost, donít tell her where I am; I do not miss her at all.
I am glad that I took the leap into the world of bariatric surgery. I
have never been smaller than a size x-large--even as a child. I grew up
in several small towns where it was just everyoneís way to think I was
too fat and needed to go on a diet. We did have in one town a very nice
neighbor who was a seamstress and made me some very nice clothes from
adult clothing that she had. I looked good but was still fat. I did
almost every yoyo diet thatís been advertised; and would lose 20 pounds
then gain 40 until nothing seemed normal. Then I would just give up and
put up with the ridicule, laughing and people pointing. I just drew into
my own little world and got the attitude that I didnít care if people
didnít like the way I looked. A true friend would be OK with it. I was
determined to live the life I wanted.
My reason for surgery was my health; I have polycystic ovarian
disease, asthma, reflux, and severe degenerative joint disease in my
knees that has made walking and exercise a nightmare. I needed something
and diets just were not helping. My highest weight was 289 pounds
I had researched weight loss surgery for more than 5 years and talked
to doctors and participated in different support groups online. Then Dr.
Davenport started doing the surgery and I came to his meeting and
started going to the support group meetings. I knew this was going to be
a challenge but I knew I had a wonderful husband and a great family
to support me. So I decided that with my family and God to support me, I
didnít have anything to lose but my extra weight. I filled out the
paperwork and took it to the post office. I think I made the motion of
putting it in the mail box about 20 times but I would take it back. Yes, I was
scared! I finally took the plunge, dropped the envelope in the mail box,
and left as fast as I could before I changed my mind.
The process was long, the staff was great, and the day finally came
for me to have surgery. I was so scared. When I arrived at the hospital
they put me in a room where I waited for my surgery. The time went so
slowly. When they finally came to get me from the room, reality sunk in
and I was terrified. I tried to be brave for my husband because I knew
he was worried. I woke up from surgery and donít remember very much, but
they said everything went fine, and I was happy.
Then the whirlwind of change started. The first three weeks went so
fast. I wanted to go back to work and Dr. Davenport let me. I was
excited I would be back in my normal routine of working, eating,
sleeping, and so on. I was losing weight and feeling fine. Life was
good; or so I thought.
At approximately 6 weeks post-op I was at work, I felt bad that
morning but thought it would pass. I went on with my work and felt
really woozy. I went back toward the bathroom and the next thing I
remember I was in the floor passed out. When I came to, the only thing I
was worried about was anyone seeing my less than graceful fall. To my
amazement no one noticed. I managed to get up, went into the bathroom
and knew I had to go to the Emergency Room. I knew that all that bright
red blood was not normal. My time in ER was scary. Dr. Davenport was out
of town. Not many doctors knew the specifics about weight loss surgery
and I did not know if they would know what to do. However, we called the
bariatric coordinator and she explained to them what I needed and they
went to work.
I spent the next few days in ICU and was found to have a bleeding
ulcer. The doctors there fixed me up and I went home feeling much
better. I was off work another 3 weeks; but eventually came back to my
normal self. That was about 3 months out. Now I feel great. I went for
my one-year check up and was very excited at losing over 100 lbs and I
was moving better.
I now weigh about 140 lbs and I am very comfortable
at that weight. I pray daily that the weight never returns, but it is
still an ongoing battle with hunger and the daily grind of doing
exercises. As everyone knows those habits are easy to break but without
those habits you can lose the battle that you fought so hard for. My
support group has been very helpful and I will continue to go to it and
I suggest that everyone do that if you donít do anything else.
Everyone asks me if I would do it again? I say yes, in a heart beat,
because now I am who I should have always been, a much happier and
I do want to say thank you to all those at Dr. Davenportís office:
Dr. Daniels and Dr. Rao, my family, coworkers and friends who encouraged
me and provided clothes for me for those first few smaller sizes. And
most of all I want to thank my husband and my son, James, the food
police. I could not have done it without you. Thank You!
|I love good news. If you have good news, a
success story to share, or inspiration, please send it to me at
Barbara@wlscenter.com so that I can include it in future