Tomorrow will be my last visit with the nutritionist leading up to my bariatric surgery. I am so happy that the time is coming closer and closer for the actual surgery. The preparations for this surgery started six months ago when I attended a seminar for Fresh Start Bariatrics in Columbus, Ohio, at Riverside Hospital. It was pure luck I saw the ad for this seminar in the newspaper. Two years ago I tried to have the surgery through St. Vincent's Charity Hospital in Cleveland, and I was unable to complete the program. The steps to completion for both programs are basically the same, but Fresh Start does everything with you, whereas St. Vincent tells you what to do and then turns you loose to do it on your own.
Anyway, so far I have had to have heart testing, lung function testing, chest x-rays, psychiatric testing, take Prev-pak antibiotics (NASTY) to get rid of h. pylori, the bacteria that causes ulcers, give up caffeine, carbonated beverages, and chewing gum - all forever- learn to drink 60 ozs. of water daily, eat three meals and three snacks per day, count my protein grams, learn to chew well, eat slowly to make my meals last for at least half an hour, have no beverages either half an hour before or after, or with meals, and WHEW! I think I've done it! Also, I have had to lose 29 lbs. before the surgery, but I haven't lost that much, only about ten lbs. So, you can see that it has been a period of re-training my mind and body for the new lifestyle I am embarking on. Eighteen years ago I quit smoking, so maybe by the time I am eighty or so I will have a healthy lifestyle!
The six months of preparation have flown by. The hard part, waiting for the insurance to approve me and to get my surgery scheduled, will drag by much more slowly, I'm sure. I can wait, though. After all, it took me fifty-four years to get fat; I can wait a few more weeks.