I was incredibly fortunate when I was starting out on my journey. I have siblings that have had gastric sleeve, I had a failed and removed lap band and kind of figured that gastric surgery would require a similar preparation and post operative care to what I had the first time round. But it was still super scary. How things work in Australia for someone with Private Health Insurance and covering the out of pocket surgical expenses themselves without accessing superannuation.
- I made sure that my private health insurance covered weight loss surgery – we increased our level of cover and I commenced the year long wait for my top level cover to kick in.
- Joined Bariatric Support Australia on Facebook – I love that group 💕
- 7 months later I went and saw my GP and he confirmed that “Yes, that is a reasonable thing for you to want to do at your size!” My BMI was over 50. In Australia most surgeons operate on people with a BMI over 35 but some will operate on lower BMI patients if they have other co-morbidities.
- My GP asked me if I knew who I wanted to be referred to for my surgery. I did know because I had done a LOT of research on Gastric Bypass and Sleeve surgeons in my area. I knew that Mister Darrin Goodall-Wilson (AKA god of gastric surgery) was widely considered one of the best surgeons in Victoria so it was a no-brainer choice for me.
- I left the GP’s office that day, referral in hand and called the surgeons rooms straight away. I had a 4 month wait to get in to see the surgeon so I booked my appointment.
- I went and saw the surgeon and we spoke and he determined that gastric bypass was going to be the best course of action for me considering my medical history. We booked my surgery on that day for 5 weeks from that date 😳😳😳😳 and I handed over the out of pocket cash for the surgery…..that part hurt……a lot. I took home a referral for a barium swallow test, blood test and ecg and a referral to the dietician. The dietician appointment was one week after my first appointment with my surgeon and all of the tests had to be conducted at least one week prior to my surgery date in June of 2018 😊
- OH NO – I grew a cyst in my face – above one of my front teeth and had to have emergency surgery to remove the cyst but I also look like my husband has beaten me – this is a very bad look and also an expected set back. I had to be operated on in the hospital because I was too fat to have my surgery in the day stay at the dental hospital – embarrassing much 😩😩😩
- I started doing the optifast (optishits) diet 2 weeks prior to my surgery and I lost 11 kilos. I think I poo’ed out my soul during those two weeks. When ole mate Johnny was singing about the burning ring of fire, he WAS talking about me.
- Surgery day arrived. My anaesthetic doctor is the rudest man I have ever met in my life and I tell him so. “I knew as soon as I saw you you were going to be impossible to cannulate at your size” yeah thanks for that MATE!
- Wheeled in for surgery having said goodbye to my family just in case I didn’t make it.
- Wake up in recovery EXTREMELY agitated and in a LOT of pain. I was crying for my kids and wouldn’t settle down because they wouldn’t bring them to me so they had to knock me out again 🤣🤣🤣 – This Mumma can fight the knocking out drugs off a time or two for her kids.
Two years later I am 97 kilos lighter than I was at my highest weight. It has not been easy but my goodness it has been worth it!
Me today 💞