I had Last October I knew I wanted to “come out” about my gastric bypass weight loss surgery. I knew that trying to be like everyone else, eating what I considered a “normal” diet of supposedly balanced protein, carbs and fats, was what became my downfall and made me gain half of the weight I originally lost back.

Shelby's Weight Loss Journey

Most of my young life I was not what you would consider obese, although I was never stick thin either. As a baby, as most babies, I had that baby fat that everyone loves to pinch – especially on your cheeks! As a pre-teen, I was definitely not overweight but still had that round face. I’m the one in glasses and pigtails in the photo below.I had that round face and a little bit of padding and was 5’3″ and about 130 pounds when I graduated from high school.

In my first post I mention that I am a survivor of sexual abuse. That alone was the one reason I could not open up well to people. I was afraid that I was the one who caused that to happen to me. This alone was a precursor to the destruction of my first marriage. We married too young, I started having panic attacks (my abuser started showing back up in my life and it was causing major panic). My ex thought he could help fix things. I feel bad for him because none of it was his fault. We definitely go through some hard lessons in life.

Senior year high school

However, I have learned how to not live with regrets – for the most part. I have to move on and make the most of my life the way it is now. While my first husband is a great person, so is Grumpy (who yes, is my 2nd and my last husband!). I feel the 2nd time around I’m doing things right with my partner in life and we are happy and content with things the way they are and if you have been a reader of my blog, you know that I completely and totally love him.

What does all of this have to do with my surgery? Well I guess it’s just a background to share a little bit of why I feel I let myself get up to 264 pounds. I just wanted to hide. I didn’t want eyes on me that made me feel uncomfortable. What changed my mind was when I realized that I was being selfish. Yes, selfish because I was not giving my kids a healthy and happy mom in their life. They had an extremely loving and probably way too overprotective mom, but she wasn’t taking care of herself to enjoy her life in the best way possible with her children.

Weight loss surgery is a tool, not a solution.

I said earlier that I have learned to live without regrets, for the most part. My biggest regret is having this surgery and not finding a way to lose the weight without it. Weight loss surgery is supposed to be a tool. Something that helps you to get a boost in losing the weight. What a lot of people don’t consider is they will still have to work hard to keep the weight off after the first few “honeymoon” years. They think it will always be easy. It’s not. Having someone tell me I took the “easy way out” really irritates me to no end. It was not the easy way out as future posts will expound on. If anything, it complicated my life even more!

Weight loss surgery (bypass) will affect your nutritional health.

Because I had the open bypass, I will always and forever be watching my nutrition and have a scar on my stomach to always remind me. I am monitored on a regular basis, have had to have b-12 shots from once a week to once a month. My iron has been extremely low in iron as well as vitamin D and recently have had to start taking a special zinc supplement. While I may not be medicated for anything else other than a slightly underactive thyroid, I am always trying to remember to take my vitamins. If I forget and forget too much, I take the chance of becoming too low again. So that is my one and only regret I have now in my life. As far as everything else goes, it seems that life has had it’s way of working things out.

There are mental and physical implications when having weight loss surgery.

In my next post I want to share with you the surgery itself. The experiences physically and mentally that I had right after the surgery as well as a year into it. I don’t know if doctors do the open bypass surgery anymore. They were just starting to do laparoscopic bypass after my surgery was done. Now there are many other types of weight loss surgery that may be less invasive and less threatening to your nutritional health.

Are you considering weight loss surgery?

If you are considering weight loss surgery at all, I definitely encourage you to do your research first and be sure that it is what you want. Also you need to understand it is not temporary. This is a permanent action that there is no reversing. One decision I made in my life that I have to life with for the rest of my life and be extra careful of my diet because of it.

What do you do when you have gained weight back after gastric bypass surgery?

You listen to your nutritionist! You find what works best for you, which in any case should be to eat a low carb, moderate protein diet. This is why I chose to follow the keto diet. The keto diet, being high fat, moderate protein, and low carb seems to really work for me. I still have my gallbladder and therefore I don’t have difficulty with eating the fats. I’m not sure how it would work for a person who also had their gallbladder removed. The best thing to do is talk to your doctor and find out what will work best for you and make sure that you implement exercise into your life.

Do you want to follow my weight loss journey? Join me on Instagram and let’s support each other in a healthy lifestyle that includes exercise, diet, and being happy!