Sunday, November 29, 2009


So I had my last Thanksgiving as a fat person. That felt nice. This time I tried not to overindulge too much, but it's hard to do that when you go to three different houses offering food! I did feel good at the end of the day, though, and I feel I didn't push myself as far as I have in the past.

February is approaching fast. I'm excited and more nervous than ever. I sometimes try and talk myself out of this surgery. Truthfully, there's things in this life I feel I need more than this surgery, but if not for this surgery, I may not be around to enjoy my life as fully as I should. And in the end, I will appreciate all the sacrifice, ESPECIALLY the sacrifices my amazing husband is making. I mean, we could move out this month. Instead we're waiting until April so that I can get surgery. This is a huge sacrifice for us because it is so hard for us to live in someone else's house. But we are so excited, and I'm excited to see myself a year from now next Thanksgiving!!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Changes & Nerves

I'm getting excited and nervous about the surgery. I know I still have a little less than three months, but I feel like having that much time is only giving me time to worry! But the good part is it gives me a lot of time to prepare. For example, I find myself not wanting any fast food or wanting to bake any sweets lately. My husband asked me to make him cookies a couple of weeks ago, and I've been putting it off because it just doesn't sound like fun. That is a huge deal for me as I am famous around here for baking a LOT. But it's like the desire just left me. And fast food doesn't sound good at all anymore. I used to love it, especially french fries. I have still eaten it a few times mainly because it's convenient, but I feel like not having a taste for it is a good start. And at least I have three months to change how I eat so my body doesn't go into shock after surgery and I don't go through a state of depression like I've heard that some people do.

I'm a little scared of the surgery. My mom's second cousin died a couple of days ago after having gastric bypass a week and a half earlier. They are doing an autopsy to find an official cause, but this scares me. I know lap band is much less invasive, but you always have to prepare for the worst and pray for the best with any surgery and anything in life. I start thinking to myself maybe lap band is a selfish decision, but I know it's something I'll always regret not trying if I don't. I just love my husband and daughter so much that I can't stand the thought of leaving them. I hope lap band surgery can help to give me a better overall quality of life. That's really why I'm doing this.

Friday, November 6, 2009

I got my date

My lap band date is February 3rd, 2010! YAY!!!!!!

The beginning of the end of being fat

Last night was the best night's sleep I've had in a long time. No, I didn't get to sleep any longer than I normally do and yes, I am still tired as always, but last night I slept peaceful, like a baby (one that doesn't wake up for 2am feedings :) ). Why, you ask? Because my news is out in the open!

Yesterday I talked to my mother-in-law some more about my choice to get lap-band. I told her I was scared to tell her husband so she said she'd try to feel him out on the subject. My husband and I went to Wal-Mart and when we got back, she had told him. Now they didn't say "WOW Ashley, great idea! Congrats and we'll support you 100%!" BUT he just asked me a few questions and just nodded and smiled with me while I explained that I'm tired of feeling like I'm in someone else's body and tired of gaining weight with every major life change. He said "I think we could all lose some weight around here", and he's right. All of us adults in the house are indeed overweight. He never said "I don't think you should do lap band" but he never came out and said I shouldn't do it either. I take this as the closest thing to approval I'll get from him! Ha! Little victories, friends.

So all of the important people in my life know now. Husband, Mom, Dad, Stepmom, In Laws, Best Friends,'s feeling good. I'm feeling good. I just called the office to schedule my date. Hopefully they'll call me back shortly.

I'm glad to have told the people close to me. I want to say accountable to them (on some level). My journey is beginning.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

My fears & final decisions

The decision to have lap band surgery isn't easy for me. I come from a long line of people who tell others to just eat healthy, exercise, and the weight will come off. To be honest, when I have followed that advice, I have truly lost weight. I just gained it all back during major changes in my life. I am hoping the restriction of the lap band will really be that extra tool I can use to not gain weight. I will most definitely eat healthier, but the upside of the band to me is that when something major in my life happens that I don't gain 50 lbs. I am tired of the yo-yo dieting. Can I get an "Amen"?

The past couple of days have been spent finalizing plans. I still have to make my initial deposit and plan a date. Honestly, I started doubting myself yesterday. I started thinking that maybe I should just wait until I can get on insurance or reapply for Medicaid and then fight for my surgery here in the states. Then I realized... I just don't wanna jump through all the hoops only for insurance to deny me anyway because I don't have any co-morbitities. I don't need to convince a corporation that I need this surgery. I don't need to convince ANYone. I know it will be beneficial. Plus I have the support of my husband, mom, dad, and stepmom. What more could I ask for? I am truly the luckiest girl on the planet.

Another thing I'm scared about is leaving my daughter for a few days. Right now I stay at home with her and I have done so ever since she was born. She's my little princess, and we've never spent a night apart and rarely have we spent the entire day apart. This will be challenging for me because I love her so much and she is such a mama's girl. I know I will cry being away from her for more than a day. Then I have to look at the flipside of the coin: me being away from her for a few days means that I will hopefully be around a lot more years to come! The sacrifice will be worth it.

An obstacle I am facing right now is telling my in-laws about my decision. Their opinion wouldn't mean so much to me except our circumstances make it so. Right now my husband, daughter, and I live in his parents' basement. My husband had to leave his job in September of 2008, and ever since then, we have been here. We are both back in school, and my husband works full-time. We were just about to move out here in December or January when I told my husband: "If I don't get this surgery now, I'll never have another opportunity to get it". And it's true. We'll never have this much extra money lying around again. If we moved out now, then we wouldn't have the extra income to save for surgery. But if I get surgery in Jan/Feb and we move out in April, I think it's feasible. I am really scared about what my father-in-law will say, though. He's an MD, and I think he might think that lap band is the easy way out. So if they tell us they don't think I should get it, it leaves me in kind of a bind because we live here virtually rent free and we do feel some sense of obligation to them for how we spend our money. Bleh. Hopefully they will be supportive. I've already mentioned it to my mother-in-law and she was like "Oh, I wanna get it too but my hubby won't let me". That was enough to scare me out of telling him! Lol. Plus we'll really need them to watch our daughter while we're gone. Oh well, if they disapprove strongly enough then we can just stay with my dad and stepmom until April. But I really hope that's a last resort.

I'm really ready to get this ball rolling. I talked to a woman named Charlotte today at Fill Centers USA and got some estimates on aftercare pricing. I really don't wanna drive to TN or GA for aftercare, but the places I talked to here around AL don't take other patients or only on a selective basis. We'll see what happens with that. In the meantime, please keep me in your prayers. I need strength from myself and understanding from the people around me.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Getting to know me

A few other bloggers that I follow have recently posted this survey, so I thought I'd join in on the fun, too. :)


- Age: 22
- Annoyance: People without open minds, dirty dishes around the house
- Animal: A scottish terrier who just had four puppies
- Actor: Tom Hanks. He's in like three of my favorite movies! (Sleepless in Seattle, You've Got Mail, and Forrest Gump)

- Beer: Yes, please. New Belgium's Fat Tire or a plain ole Coors Light will do.
- Birthday/Birthplace: June 17 in Louisville, KY
- Body Part on opposite sex: Eyes & hair
- Been in Love: Yes, still am :)
- Been bitched at: Yes!
- Believe in yourself?: Most of the time
- Believe in God: For sure
- Before weight: 280 lbs

- Car: 2003 Blue Ford Focus
- Candy: Snickers and Twix
- Color: Blue
- Cried in school: Yes
- Chocolate/Vanilla: Chocolate all the way
- Chinese/Mexican: Mexican
- Cake or pie: All of the above. LOL
- Country to visit: Italy and New Zealand

- Day or Night: Night
- Do the splits?: Never

- Eggs: Scrambled with cheese
- Eyes: Blue

- First crush: the weatherman
- First thoughts waking up: Gotta feed and change the baby
- Food: Pasta, Mexican, a good hamburger

- Greatest Fear: Dying before I get a chance to live fully
- Goals: to lose my weight, keep it off, be a better wife and mom... so many!
- Get along with your parents?: Now that I'm out of their houses.. yes! :)
- Good luck charm: My iPhone?

- Hair Colour: Brown
- Height: 5'8"
- Happy: Yes
- Holiday: Halloween, Christmas, New Year's
- Health freak?: Not yet
- Hate: People who nag or judge when they've never been in your shoes

- Ice Cream: Rarely, but something chocolate
- Instrument: Geetar

- Jewelry: My wedding and engagement bands
- Job: Being an awesome mom and a kickass wife. Lol.

- Kids: Lucy who will be 1 in February! :)
- Kickboxing or karate: I'd try either
- Keep a journal? Blogs

- Longest Car Ride: 11-12 hrs from Birmingham to Chicago. Bleh.
- Love: is an ocean trying to fill this tiny cup
- Laughed so hard you cried: Yes, also laughed so hard I peed my pants.
- Love at first sight: Not for me, but my husband swears yes

- Milk flavor: None
- Movie: Elizabethtown
- Mooned anyone?: My brothers while growing up
- Marriage: is good
- Motion sickness? No
- McD’s or BK: McDonald's

- Number of Siblings: 2 younger brothers, 14 & 9
- Number of Piercings: Had 5 in my ears altogether and a nose piercing when I was like 18. But I wear no rings now.
- Number: 3

- One wish: For the world to know Christ

- Place you’d like to live: The Carolinas
- Perfect Pizza: Giordano's spinach pizza
- Pepsi/Coke: Diet Coke

- Questionaires: They are ok

- Reason to cry: Rejection
- Reality T.V.: No Thanks
Roll your tongue in a circle? Yes

- Song: Lots. Probably something by Bob Dylan.
- Shoe size: 9-10
- Salad Dressing: Light Ranch
- Skipped school: All of high school
- Smoking: Only a cigar now and then
- Sing well?: I hope so.. it's part of what I do.
- Strawberries/Blueberries: Strawberries

- Time for bed: 11-12ish
- Thunderstorms: They are great
- TV: Sometimes. Usually not.

- Unpredictable: Rarely.

- Vegetable you hate: celery
- Vegetable you love: peas
- Vacation spot: Gulf Shores, AL

- Weakness: My daughter's smile
- When you grow up: I don't wanna.
- Which one of your friends acts the most like you: Emily!
- Wanted to be a model?: Once. Blame it on high school.

-X-Rays: Just for my teeth.

-Year it is now: 2009
-Yellow: My sister in law swore the color of yellow made her stomach hurt when she was younger!

- Zoo: is fun
- Zodiac sign: Gemini

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

My journey through weight

I remember during Thanksgiving break of my 7th grade year, my mom took me shopping for jeans. It was the first time I had to buy a size up in 7/8, and I swore I was fat. I was about 140 lbs and 5'6". I wish my mom had taken me aside then and told me I wasn't fat. I wish she had told me instead that I was perfectly beautiful the way I was. And maybe she made a comment back to me like "Oh brother, you're not fat!" but I can't remember it. All I remember is accepting that then and there, I was fat.

I really started to pack on the pounds during the second semester of my freshman year in high school. I was dealing with a lot of stress and was getting really depressed. I started therapy my sophomore year. Along with therapy, I took Paxil to deal with my depression and social anxiety. Unfortunately, I gained about 40 lbs. My stepmom and I joined Weight Watchers and I lost about 30 lbs, but by the time I graduated high school in 2004, I had gained it all back and then some. I was 5'8" and up to 240 lbs. I was sickened with myself. My best friend was a size zero and about 86 lbs, so you can imagine how I felt always standing next to her. I wish I could find a picture of me then, but I avoided the camera like the plague.

It was then that I decided to change my life for the better. I started eating chicken and vegetables and brown rice and drinking a LOT of water. I monitored my calories and made an effort to exercise every once in a while. Before I knew it, I was down to 170 lbs. This is how much I weighed when I met the man who was to become my husband in 2006. As soon as I met him, we began spending a lot of time together. Since he ate like crap, so did I. Here's a picture of me in early 2007 around 180-ish:

By the time of our wedding in late 2007, I was 200-210 lbs. (I'm not sure exactly--I refused to touch the scale). Looking at my pictures, I didn't look that bad. But my confidence was shot because I had gained 30-40 lbs back. Here is a wedding picture of me:

Throughout our first year of marriage, I only continued to gain weight. We moved to a new city with very stressful jobs, and we ate out so much. We had a baby in February of 2009, and after that, I knew I had to do something. Here is sit at 280 lbs. I had to buy new jeans because I couldn't fit into my pre-pregnancy size 20 jeans. I wear oversized t-shirts all of the time. I hate it. Here is a picture of me from a family reunion this August:

I don't even look like the same person as I did two years ago on our wedding day. I posted these pictures to give you a visual of my journey and struggle with weight. I am ready to be the same size I was when I met my husband (or smaller!). I want to first and foremost be healthy. I wanna buy cute clothes. I wanna feel sexy. I'm sure all you women out there can relate! :)

Monday, November 2, 2009


My name is Ashley, and I'm 22. I am currently 280 lbs and 5'8". I have been overweight most of my teen and adult life. I recently made the decision to have lap band surgery.

I will be a self-pay patient. I'll fly into San Diego in late January/early February of 2010 and have my surgery performed by Dr. Pompa in Tijuana. My husband will come with me. The reason I decided to wait a couple months is I know the holidays will be very stressful for me, so starting a brand new lifestyle then just doesn't seem smart! I live in Alabama but I know I'll be visiting family in Kentucky for Thanksgiving, and Christmas is always a mad house around here. :)

I am getting lap band for a few different reasons:

1) I'm tired of feeling like I'm in the body of a 70 yr old. After I sit for a while, it hurts to get up and start walking right away. I'm too young for that!

2) When I was in the hospital giving birth to my daughter, the nurses told me that when I sleep, I stop breathing. They also said I snore really loud (I always have), but that I needed to get into a sleep study to see if I have sleep apnea. Well, no insurance=no study, but I am sure I have it. I get tired throughout the day and can fall asleep just sitting there. I feel exhausted all of the time.

3) I wanna be healthy for my family. My daughter will be turning one in February, and I want the energy to chase her around! Right now I get winded just walking up one flight of stairs. And since I plan to have many more kids, I want to get healthy. Also, my husband is a diabetic (genetics--not caused by his weight), and we need to get a healthier eating plan in place.

4) I wanna wear cute clothes! I wanna be able to shop at The Gap, New York & Company, and The Limited. I'm tired of Lane Bryant being my only option, and I'm tired of every dress looking like a sheet draped over me! LOL. :)

5) While I don't have high blood pressure or diabetes, I want to prevent this from happening. I feel lap band will teach me to eat more healthy and in smaller portions.

These are just a few reasons I can gather off the top of my head. I KNOW lap band is not a cure all, but it is a great tool to aid weight loss. I can't wait to get down to my goal weight and keep it off. Bandsters, unite! :)

Blog Template by