Patient Journeys - Kathy Metzer

Welcome to the first part of our new social media initiative; The Patient Journeys Series. The entire focus of this series is to showcase the personal accounts of CEMMS community members. To kick off the series is a post from Kathy Metzer , an NLP practitioner currently studying Cognitive Behavioral Therapy.

Starting weight: 101.2 kilograms

Current weight: 51.5 kilograms

" I have gone through a huge transformation. At a whopping 102 kilograms at a height of 162cm, I decided I needed to something really drastic. I had a grandchild on the way and I wanted to be able to play with him and live a life that was full, not riddled with excuses and unhappiness. After 2 years I had shed 52 kilograms, emerging from a difficult journey with no regrets; only a renewed sense of self and real, true confidence.

I lost half of myself in body weight, but I gained so much more.

This kind of journey is a complex one, it is not a silver bullet. It is physically, mentally and emotionally difficult and requires extreme discipline and commitment.

I took drastic measures when my health started to suffer because of the excess weight. I was suffering from sleep apnoea and was on a steady road to Type 2 diabetes. I’d been on every diet known to man. I lost weight but would put it all back and then some for a rainy day. During my journey, I discovered that a personal transformation of this magnitude ends up revealing many unexpected truths. The gastric bypass itself is nothing. It is the journey afterward that sees the real stuff begin to happen. There are ups and downs. It has an impact on your family. My children were understandably worried, but for them, it was almost like someone had replaced their mother. But you know your kids love you and they eventually get used to Version 2 and not Version Yo-Yo.

Another interesting thing that happens is that you discover who your true friends are, those that really support you and are happy for you, not those who like having a fat friend around. I have made some awesome new friends though. All of a sudden some of your married friends think that you have become a husband snatcher even if you wouldn’t touch them with a 10 foot barge pole. Your colleagues treat you differently, mostly I found you are taken more seriously (and then of course there are those start asking people if you are sick and dying) well at least they don’t ask if you are pregnant when you are single, over 50 and have had a hysterectomy - LOL.

On the being single part, I thought that I would have them queuing at my door, but obviously I left no forwarding address. I am enjoying the “me” time though and not looking for someone to validate me. Another perk is that shopping for clothes is no longer depressing, I never imagined in my life that I would wear a size 8. And yes, I had to get a new wardrobe (including shoes as my feet shrunk as well), but what I saved on food I could spend on clothes.

Regardless of the method one uses to lose the weight, there is one common theme and it’s this: Diets don’t work. You have to re-program yourself and your beliefs about food or you will simply end up right back where you started. You have to decide that even though food is there to be enjoyed, its main objective to nourish your body and give you fuel. I don’t want to say it’s about changing your lifestyle, but it is. I had to drastically reduced the size of my meals, eating mostly off a side plate and paying special attention to the types of food that I eat. My average meal is made up of half a plate of protein, quarter veg and quarter healthy starch (not refined starches).

Despite some issues with excess skin, my health has never been better. I no longer have to sleep with that horrid mask that makes me look like Darth Vader. My sleep apnoea is gone! All 18 of my first-year check-up blood tests came back 100 too. If you take my journey, my suggestion is to go to the best team you can find."

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