At about the age of thirty-five I started noticing the accumulation of fat and it was becoming more difficult to stay in shape and lose weight. I was fairly active with hunting, fishing, and coaching, but I was a teacher and much of my life was sedentary.
My first attempt at weight loss was Slim Fast. I would drink one at lunch. There was the feeling that I was doing something positive, but after a year of the “Slim Fast” diet, I’d gained another ten pounds. Next, I attempted something akin to the Atkins Diet, no breads, pastries, or pastas and mainly meat. I’m not sure if it was related but I did start to get headaches so that was a no-go. In the meantime I gained another ten pounds.
Eventually I just decided to eat less, eat slower, and consume healthier foods. I was taking advice from just about everyone, but the weight continued to pile up. In the period of thirty years I climbed from 205 to 245 then 270 and after a few more years I was up to 310. And at this point I had numerous health problems to deal with – high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and sky-high triglycerides, but type-2 diabetes was the final straw. Additionally, my joints ached when I moved… knees, hips, lower back, feet, so exercise was difficult and painful. And neuropathy even set in with feet and even hands. I was taking numerous medications including insulin injections twice daily.
The next step seemed drastic but I kept hearing advertisements from Positive Changes Hypnosis Clinic in Spokane and they always mentioned the maladies which I was experiencing. It was expensive but I entered the nine month program. I was making some progress, falling from 310 to 280 in six months. But the local clinic pulled up stakes in one night and left with my money, and I suspect the funds of many participants. That was a shattering blow at a time when I was experiencing stress dealing with an accumulation of problems with the other three generations of my family. All the lost weight came back.
That’s when I was ready to try something as serious as bariatric surgery.
I started the long process of going through those hoops in order to get the procedure covered by insurance. That process was frustrating. And the accompanying education was an eye-opener. Not all surgeries were successful, some had serious complications following the surgery, and vitamin supplements would be necessary for the rest of the patient’s lifetime. This was serious business and I decided to drop out of the bariatric program before surgery. I would try one more time to lose the excess weight on my own.