“From about the age of 12 my weight has been an issue. I broke my hip at that age, and not being active, the weight piled on. Being a chunky child is not easy. School was not easy. Kids are cruel. Finally, after years of being teased and ridiculed for my weight, I developed an eating disorder my junior/senior year of high school. It was nice to actually be noticed, especially by boys. Well, I eventually got very sick and started passing out and realized it wasn’t worth being skinny when I wasn’t a healthy skinny. I gained some weight back but was still in a healthy range for my height.

Well, I met the love of my life and got married. With my first pregnancy I gained 80 pounds. Four months after my daughter was born, I got pregnant with my son. I wasn’t one of those lucky women that got to wear her regular clothes home from the hospital. I still had a lot of weight on me from both pregnancies. I had gained well over 100 pounds. I was miserable. I tried so many different things to lose the weight. I tried fad diets, doctor prescribed pills, even weight watchers. It seemed nothing worked. I joined work out classes at the gym.

So many people think that if you are overweight, that you are lazy. That’s not true, I work full time as a cosmetologist, and a mother of two, and a loving wife.

Something had to give though, my health was in danger and I was only 31-years-old. I had high cholesterol and high triglycerides.  My liver was fatty, my joints ached, especially my hip that is pinned! I was so tired at the end of the work day and my body hurt badly. I then found out I was pre-diabetic and that was the last straw. I had to do something, so I could see my kids grow up. I had heard of gastric surgery before but I although thought it was taking the easy way out. I was desperate! Oh boy, was I wrong.

Dr. Glascock really opened my eyes about how much work it is, if you do it right. I was on board, full steam ahead. Every test, even the physical evaluation I was ready to take it on. The entire staff - Mary, Kim, Zinka, and Dr. Glascock were all so encouraging. They weren’t sure if insurance would approve it, because I have good blood pressure. It took a day to hear from the insurance and they said, “YES!” I cried like a baby when Kim gave me the news. I knew my life was going to change forever.

On March 5, 2013 was the day my new life started.

I chose the gastric sleeve procedure. It seemed like the best fit for me. The liquid diet before the surgery was tough, but I did it. I was a pot-a-day coffee addict and liked a few drinks. It was all worth giving up. The weight had melted off! I followed everything to a tee! I wanted and needed this life change, so I could be a better mom, wife, and employee.

Well, it worked! I have lost 140 pounds and feel great. My joints, heart and entire ‘self’ thanks me every day.

There will always be the negative people who tell me that I should have done it the right way. But who is to say, what way is the right way. The gastric sleeve is what worked for me. I walk and do yoga a couple of days a week and I am active with my kids.

I’ve heard since my surgery from people that they always knew there was a beautiful person under all that weight.

I’m still me; I’ve always been beautiful inside and out. Now I’m just healthy.

My last bit of advice is to make sure you do it for you and no one else! I’ve enjoyed being an inspiration to others.”