Valerie's Weight Loss Success Story
"I was usually in constant pain when I tried to be active
pre-surgery. I was always tired, had high blood pressure/cholesterol and my
weight had gotten to the point where it was affecting both my own life and the
lives of my family. I would get turned away from rides at Disneyland and my
kids would be confused as to why they couldn’t get on the ride. It felt
impossible to explain to them I was the reason.
Finally, while I was pregnant with my son, my OBGYN told me
I wouldn’t live to see him graduate. It was then I knew I had to do something.
I didn’t want to go through life like this any longer. Honestly, I wouldn’t
even consider what I was doing as living. I wanted my lifestyle to change. I was
desperate to be present and active in my kids’ lives and I decided I’d do
whatever it took to play, laugh and watch them grow.
After doing the research and consulting with my primary care
doctor, I decided on Gastric Sleeve surgery in 2014. It took extensive research
and I quickly learned this would not be the ‘easy way out.’ Throughout the
process, you have to make sacrifices all of the time and endure some very
painful days. It’s a lifelong journey and commitment, and one you can never
take a step back from.
Since the surgery, I have lost 150 pounds. I can ride on ANY ride I want and get to see the
elation on my kids’ faces. I no longer have to shop at specialty stores to find
something that might actually fit. I play softball, volleyball, run and ride my
bike all of the time with no pain or exhaustion.
If you are on the fence about having surgery, my advice is
to make sure your mind is in the right place. This is a complete lifestyle
adjustment. You must follow the instructions given and cut out all the bad things
in your life, especially the ones that put you there in the first place. You didn’t
gain the weight overnight and you won’t lose it overnight either, but you will
be happy with the results. This is not an easy process, but it did save my
I can’t say enough about the weight loss team at UnityPoint
Clinic. Dr. LaMasters really cares about you as a person, and as a family. To
her, you are not a number or a statistic, but rather a part of a lifelong
family and support system. The way she comes and speaks to you and your family
on a personal level is something I’ve never experienced before with a
physician. It shows that she truly cares about you and your success. Thanks to
this process, I will happily watch my kids AND my grandkids graduate."