What was it like in the Olden Days when you had bariatric surgery, Grandma? - Newbie Post-op

In the beginning years of Bariatric Surgery, none of us knew what to expect. There were no suggestions for meals, or guidelines, no real rules, and remember that there was barely an internet 20 years ago. My surgeon was a cowboy who told me to eat lightly the day before surgery. There were just a few living breathing examples of post ops and the one we all knew was Carnie Wilson, of Wilson Phillips, remember her? Fresh from her Playboy layout, I remember watching a TV interview where she talked about her bariatric surgery while making a dessert with Sweetened Condensed Milk, licking it from her fingers and calling it 'Liquid Gold'. I also recall thinking "that girl is in BIG trouble".

You are on thin ice!

Back in the year 2000, having bariatric surgery was like walking across a frozen lake, never being sure if the next step would crack the ice, and plunge us into the icy water. We didn't know anyone who had actually been across the lake before - we were on our own inching along tentatively, scared to death of what could or would happen. I was afraid to swallow my own spit in the weeks following my surgery. Recently, we have had post ops in our Facebook Support Group who stopped at Chick Fil A on the way home from the hospital! It's ridiculous and dangerous, yet real.

Party like it's 1999

Today, there are all kinds of people on the other side of that frozen lake cheering you on, having a party with confetti and they're drinking Diet Coke. Come on - walk faster! Don't worry! The ice is THICK! Don't be scared!

Temptation Island

Have an Oreo, we're all having Oreos. You deserve an Oreo! At least have ONE Oreo, they're just 17g Carbs and 9g Sugar! We are eating Oreos and look at us! We are losing weight eating Oreos. Don't listen to the Food Police trying to scare you! We didn't have surgery to be on a diet for the rest of our lives! Go ahead, have a sandwich, it's whole grain bread! LOOK, we eat pizzas made with TORTILLAS. It's EVERYTHING IN MODERATION! Potatoes are vegetables, have some! Would you like a Diet Mountain Dew? I drink soda and I have lost 75 pounds in four months, so I must be doing something right! Hahahaha. Come on, join us.

Misery Loves Company

If others are doing it, it can't be that bad! Can it? Isn't this how we arrived at the doorstep of bariatric surgery to begin with; by ignoring the reality of our actions? (I don't eat much) Why, yes it is! Let's find others who are also pushing it and not doing what they are supposed to be doing. IF they are still losing weight, maybe I can get away with it too! You will find this attitude in many many many support groups. But. Not. Ours. Here is the Reader's Digest Version of what people think (if you dont know what that is, ask your mother):

Bariatric surgery drastically reduces the amount of food you can stuff into your mouth and ultimately your stomach so for about SEVEN MONTHS, I repeat 7 months - you can effectually eat just about anything and still lose ONE HUNDRED POUNDS! You can literally not move a single muscle, eat whatever you want (that doesn't come back up) and because your stomach has been made so small you can actually lose ONE HUNDRED POUNDS! It's as if we found the Easy Button.

Now the Truth

Please listen as this is critical - you are not driving the bus for the first seven months after surgery, even though you may think so. It is the surgery doing the work! It's a gift from the Surgeon. What you do with the massive head start that bariatric surgery provides is then up to YOU.

IF you take it upon yourself to learn what eating right actually means - it takes a while to get the hang of it, even though it is simple it does take planning and effort.

IF you figure out a way to motivate yourself to move your big ole butt at least a little bit on 3 out of 7 days a week, even if it's just parking further out in the lot at the office.

IF you somehow look inside yourself and figure out that you may have an underlying issue which is the cause of your eating - that this is not really about food for you and take the even bigger step to work it out with a therapist.

IF you put your hands over your ears and ignore the Oreo Eaters who do not realize they are following false Oreo gods and if you do not hang out with the WRONG CROWD.

Those are some big 'IF's. But if you turn those 'IF's into 'Do's, you will have an amazing opportunity to overcome and even reverse the death sentence of Morbid Obesity!

The Truth about Bariatric Surgery

Bariatric surgery gives you about SEVEN MONTHS to easily take off ONE HUNDRED POUNDS to lighten your load and give a boost to your self-esteem, while you get your act together with food. Boom.

January 03, 2021
Bariatric Recipes Advice, Rants & Support Podcast: Real Talk