When I moved to Ireland in 2014 I weighed 90K (14 Stone) – That doesn’t sound like much, but it was, considering just 1.5 years before that I was 65kg (10 stone) and that was just the beginning.
Horrible eating habits, stress at work, relationship problems, being far away from family and lack of exercise were all contributing factors to my weight gain, but it all just got way worse when I got a birth control implant in 2017. Within TWO MONTHS I had gained another 20 kg (3 stones) and I was now 100kg (15 stones).
After trying absolutely everything, from diets, fasting, and exercise programmes (sometimes lying to myself, but most of the time not) the only thing I was losing was all hope in bringing the weight down. Exercising became impossible due to the pain in the joints and my horrible cardiovascular capacity. High Blood Pressure & Sleeping Apnea were just a couple of the health problems that were seriously impacting not only my physical and mental health but also my relationship and work
In 2019, now 116 kg (18.2 stone), I started looking into bariatric surgery options with the help and support of my family and partner, and at the end of that year, I met the lovely Deborah and had my first appointment with Mr Robb & Emer. To say I immediately felt like I would be in great hands would be an understatement.
They asked me all the questions and explained the types of surgery, we decided the best option for me was the Roux-en-Y Gastric Bypass and they advised me on the next steps, so I started the process of psychological evaluation and medical tests right away.
In January 2020 I ended up at the hospital and was diagnosed with IIH (Idiopathic Intracranial Hypertension), a build-up of pressure around the brain that in my case was caused by severe obesity. The recommendation was to lose weight quickly, so the surgery became first priority. Until COVID.
COVID and extreme lack of movement didn’t help, but in May I got the call and my surgery was scheduled for July 2020. I had my surgery in the middle of the lockdown. No family or friends were allowed to come with me to the clinic but none of that mattered. As soon as I arrived at the clinic the nurses and doctors became those friends and family. First thing in the morning, Nurse Jo did all the prep work and got me ready for the surgery. I went “under the robot” first thing in the morning and came out at some point a couple of hours later. The rest is history.
The help and care of the nurses were beyond belief, Mr Robb and Emer came to check on me multiple times and within a couple of days I was back home. The aftercare was just as phenomenal. Constant follow-ups with Mr Robb, and Emer and open communication with Deborah really made the process so much easier.
Your body goes through so many changes that it is hard to keep up sometimes, so being able to communicate these feelings to the medical team was priceless. Dr Fallon was also of great help when it came to reality check and understanding what to expect pre-surgery, and Dr O’Connell was an invaluable resource post-surgery making sure all my hormones and vitamin levels were always on track.
I am now 33, almost 3 years post-op and I can’t thank this team enough. My life has changed in ways I didn’t expect and I couldn’t even imagine. I have lost 60kg (9.4 stone) since the surgery. I began exercising as soon as I could to help the process, the skin and to build muscle and I am currently 58kg (9 stone). No more High Blood Pressure problems, Sleeping Apnea is gone, self-confidence is back, happiness levels are high and stable as well as hormone and vitamin levels. I got a dog, a house and engaged last year and without trying to sound cheesy, it all tracks back to the surgery. I am a better person, a better version of myself since the surgery. The woman I knew I was was hidden under a big shell of fat that slowly but surely melted away unleashing my full potential.
All I can say today is I am forever grateful to the Blackrock WeightCare Team and thank YOU if you made it this far reading my story, I hope it helps you and many others in the process.