Age: 39
Date of Surgery: May 16, 2011
Pounds Lost: 135

Before Surgery

Two years ago, I weighed 285 pounds. I was a type 2 diabetic, had high cholesterol and unstable asthma and that’s just naming a few of my health issues.

Today, I am so thankful I had the surgery and received the tools I needed to improve my health. Prior to my surgery, I wasn’t able to walk far because of my asthma. My heel hurt because of plantar fasciitis, I had increased back pain and my ankle and knee would swell up. My blood sugar was always high because I used food to comfort me when I was stressed or tired. I was stressed and tired all of the time because I was always in pain. When I watched people exercise and jog, I wished I would be able to do it -someday.

I no longer have to wish. Since my surgery, I’ve lost a total of 135 pounds. I now weigh 150 pounds. Eating the right foods, the moderate amount for the size of my stomach and exercise has helped me maintain my weight. My diabetes went away immediately after surgery and I don’t have health problems. I don’t take any medication, only supplements.

I’m also achieving my dreams. I’m able to run and jump and feel free – from asthma, aches and pains. I’ve learned to eat healthy foods in the right moderation. I have a membership at the gym and my daughters and I go four times a week. I participate in Zumba, yoga and cycling classes. I’ve gone ice skating, skiing, horseback riding and rode amusement park rides with my daughters. These are things I would have never done without the surgery.

At work, some of my banking customers, who are snowbirds, hadn’t seen me for a while and didn’t even recognize me when they came into the bank. I now carry the picture I took before the surgery so that I can show people that’s it’s still me.

Even my personality has changed – from feeling miserable, depressed and irritable to feeling beautiful, confident, healthy, young and energetic. I live a healthy lifestyle and instill that within my daughters. This surgery has given me a second chance in life and has given my daughters a mother they can enjoy for even longer.

I want everyone to have the joy and good health I feel. This is one reason I will always encourage obese people to consider Gastric Bypass surgery. I am proud of my progress and share my story with anyone who is willing to hear it.

After Surgery

From day one of my surgery to my discharge, Garnet Health Medical Center was caring, patient and professional. Garnet Health Medical Center has such an awesome friendly staff. Manager of the Bariatric Surgery Program, Janet Kovler, is professional, knowledgeable and there when you need her. The support groups at Garnet Health Medical Center are very informative and helpful. The Bariatric team was very efficient with providing the proper programs, education and support I needed to have a successful surgery and future. Whenever I had a concern or question they were always there to help.

Garnet Health Medical Center sets itself apart because it genuinely cares about the patients they serve. The staff are professional, friendly and efficient. The Bariaric Surgery team works together to demonstrate its efforts in making sure the patient is cared for properly. You don’t get that kind of care anywhere else.

Jessica Escobar