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Jan - Feb 2014
The Newsletter for Bariatric Patient Education and Motivation

My 340 Pound Transformation Changed My Life

By Monica Ganz, PhD


Before I took control of my life by having gastric bypass surgery in January 2002, I was overweight for so long I can’t remember a time when I wasn’t.

 

But, I can remember that everyone told me life would be better if I lost weight. The exact words they used may have varied a little bit, but the idea behind what they said was pretty much the same:

 

You have such a pretty face…

If you would just lose some weight you could…

You would get a better job if you were a size 10…

You would have more dates and friends, if you were skinny…

You would get a husband if you lose weight…

You would have a bigger house if you were skinny…

You would be in better health without all the extra weight…

You would have more money if you were skinny…

You would have more opportunities if you were skinny…

You would be more successful if you were skinny…

You wouldn’t have had a miscarriage if you had lost more weight first…

It was all your fault…


I heard this and thought:

My family would love me more if I were skinny…

My Mom and Dad would be proud of me if I were skinny…

I am so sorry… 
All of this noise made me feel awful…so I ate and ate and ate to feel something.

Eventually, my weight did change. It went up and up.

 

But, when I took control of my life back in 2002, I worked hard at losing 340 pounds. Now I feel normal, not skinny by no means, but to me normal is skinny by comparison to what I was years ago at over 500 pounds. So now my weight is stable and life goes on. How have things changed, you wonder?

 

Well, let me try to put this all into perspective for you. When you feel better about yourself, your self-esteem goes up. When your self-esteem goes up, you develop more confidence. When you have more confidence, you feel you can accomplish more. So the act of losing the weight itself did not change my life, but the way I view myself now has completely changed. I became more acceptable to society and I became more acceptable to myself. I no longer was fighting internally with myself all of the time. This allowed me to get stronger and more secure as a person, which changed who I am and how I now view my life. So it is not that my life changed, it is how I view my life that changed.

 

So if you experience the noise that I heard in my past, I hope that you can find your inner confidence and believe you too can do it.