Sarah's Blog

So a little about me and my background.

I'm a 40 year old single mum, divorced for 10 years and my beautiful though stressful children are 14 and 11 years old. I am a mature student studying my first degree after an accident led to me losing my job. This has left me with a lifetime medical condition that I manage sometimes badly everyday, but I manage. I have been through some very tough times in my life, my now ex husband leaving me and my two children homeless and having to restart our lives not once but now twice.

I have had a problem with my weight since I was 23 years old. I have tried every diet under the sun, sometimes to the point where I have ended up in hospital. Please know I have been desperate enough to lose weight that I have damaged my own life in the process. Now I look at life in a different way, well I am trying to. I want to make my life to be about the things I am going to achieve. I don't want my life to be just something that passes me by anymore. I am making small changes to make my life relavent. I don't want to be stick thin anymore. I don't want to be like the women I see on TV.

I do however want to be healthy and happy. I know that I am going to slip up and old habits will rear their ugly heads but I am human, I will make mistakes but the time has come to accept that I am gonna trip up but if I fall I can pick myself up, dust myself off and get back in the game. I know I am one of many who feel like we have been dealt a rough hand but maybe I should start by picking the cards for my hand in the future. Take back some control in my life and make it count for me. I will laugh at some things and I will break down and cry at other things but they will all mark my path and hopefully be a story I tell when I am old and grey (L'Oreal is covering up the grey for now). Hopefully I can share some of these if not all of these things with everyone else.

You can catch my previous blog posts here

Blog 18

Ok so where are we right now? Well I am melting in the heat wishing global warming was a figment of my imagination, quite clearly, it’s not as the sun tries to melt my face off while I put the washing on the line. Domestic chores are not fun in the heat for anyone especially when you are fat. Honestly the chub rub on the thighs is enough to figure out how the cavemen discovered fire. I would love to say I am relaxing in this heat and soaking up the sun but the truth is I am festering and wishing I could get away with wearing shorts and a vest top without Greenpeace tracking me down to plonk me in to the ocean like some form of rescued whale.

On a lighter note, I did attend my MDT appointment. Yes, I know it sounds very official doesn’t it. Last month I told you how they said I would have to wait 3 months for that appointment. Turns out I only had to wait two weeks for the appointment to turn up and then a further two weeks till the actual appointment.  There is always a lot of excitement among those of us on tier 3 waiting to head towards surgery about MDT, there is always many saying how they have their appointment and then they go on to speak to the surgeon a month or so afterwards. So naturally I got mine and I was jumping for joy at receiving this strange and mystical MDT appointment.  It’s three hours long this appointment so it must be very involved and in-depth. I head in to my appointment all nervous because I don’t know what to expect other than there will be about 6-8 of us and we must see 3 specialists.  See, it sounds mysterious doesn’t it. I walk in and there are 8 of us in total. I grab a seat and wait for someone to indicate that everything is about to start. A lovely nurse comes in and tells us we will start in 5 mins.

Ok well that was three hours of things I had already researched. I get why they have the MDT and I now get why no one really talks about it. It’s not mysterious at all. We discussed the effects of surgery, this is something I have discussed at length with the surgeon and with the nurses for the last 8 months. We then speak with a psychologist about the fact we will be left with horrid skin, our hair will thin and fall out. Once again these are all things I had fully researched and knew about. There is a dietician there I know and she is taking notes. I am fearful that if we don’t ask questions they will think we are not showing effort. I know everything they are talking about as I am one of those people who must research thoroughly before I make decision on anything (boring I know but that’s me). I quickly ask a question about drinking before and after food to make it seem like I need to find something, hell anything out then go back to just listening.  The 3 hours is up and I haven’t learned anything new other than it will be about end of Sept when I get to see the surgeon and then around mid-Feb at the latest when I get to have surgery. So, the whole journey will have taken around 18 months on the 6-month pathway. Which to be fair after finding out that my hospital is the only one that performs this via NHS service for the whole of the East of England is a very quick journey in my opinion. Granted if I had paid privately it would have been one third of that time but still how marvellous that they can perform so quickly for such a large area.

Now for the time being I must stick to my new eating habits and carry on trying to lose some weight whilst I wait to see the surgeon. I know I make light of this journey and say some flippant things but I chatted with another patient this week about their journey and how it was going. They have received an awful amount of criticism from friends and family about their choice to have surgery. I know that we are judged by everyone for having surgery, but I would like to speak in his defence and well in all our defences for having surgery. Nearly everyone I have spoken to along my journey has been through some major upheaval in their life that has resulted in devastating consequences to them. Now I know we all go through shit in our lives, trust I have been through the mill a few times. But everyone has a way of coping some choose healthy things but there are others who choose a more self-destructive road. Whether they chose drink, drugs or food it was their way of coping with some form of horror in their life. In our society, we have a massive soft spot for the loveable rouge who fell prey to alcohol or drug abuse and we take them in and help them telling them how brave they are etc. We see fat people however and the first thought is OMG they must be lazy; don’t they like themselves? This is so the wrong attitude to have and then when they go seek help they are belittled for it. Even the people who profess to love them question them and accuse them of taking the easy way out. I would urge anyone who thinks this is an easy route to actually research what happens to yourself after surgery hell even the hoops to jump through just to get as far as I have. The journey is long and it’s brutal, it’s painful and humiliating. Anyone having this surgery will never lead the normal life they thought they were going to, they will forever be checking levels of this and that to make sure they have eaten protein to function that day. They will cut all their hair short because the patches of hair coming out after surgery make them look almost bald. It takes about a year for your hair to get back to a decent state. They will spend over £60 every three months on vitamins and minerals as their body no longer absorbs them. If they don’t eat correctly they will suffer something called dumping syndrome which means they gets the chills, nausea, the shakes, headaches, sweating, breathlessness to name but a few symptoms and all because something they ate had a fraction too much sugar or fat in it. Trust me when I say they are not having this surgery to take the easy way out. They are having this surgery because something went seriously wrong in their life and they can’t recover on their own from it.
Ok now if you will excuse me I have a date with a chair in the garden and the kids paddling pool. Enjoy the sunshine everyone and don’t forget the sun cream and stay hydrated.









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