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Hello. My name is Penelope. I am a Pastor's wife with many church duties. Over the last six years I was diagnosed with several anti-immune diseases that required medications that also influenced weight gain. I reached a whopping 292 lbs. before I woke up and realized that something had to be done. I had begun to have shortness of breath, couldn't walk very far at all, couldn't stand for very long, sweated profusely, couldn't control my hunger and yet, was literally thirsting myself to death.

Finally in mid-July, I made an appointment to attend a seminar on the Lap Band, and this was what I was aiming for. However, after the seminar, my husband and I began to talk the pro's and con's of all three: lap-banding, sleeve and Roux and Y, and decided that the Roux and Y fit me much better. I made the appointment with a doctor, and I wasn't sure who that was at this point because I refused to lock myself into anything. We went to the appointment together and at the office, they weighed me and had me meet with Dr. Richard Folwell. He basically asked if I had read the materials and understood what they meant and what this would mean for me. He also asked if I was ready for the commitment. I told him yes and we began the classes. I had lost down to 249 lbs. using Atkins.

The classes were pretty hard to understand in the first two because they were in a transition with new personnel. However, that third week I learned I had been doing it correctly and felt more self-assured about week's four and five. From May 2011 to December 2011 I lost 69 lbs weighing in at 223 lbs. People began to ask why I didn't just stick with the plan and lose the weight on my own, but I've been there and done that. I would have lost the weight and gained it back eventually. But because of my health issues, I had committed to this so that I could lived healthy and be able to play with my grandchildren.

Week six descended upon me and I had to go through the holidays, Christmas and New Years, on liquids in preparation for the surgery scheduled on Monday, January 9, 2012. I was truly nervous about the surgery, but confident in the fact that my Savior was with me. Trust me, I would not have gone under without the knowledge that God the Father was in approval and with me. The surgery went well and the hospital stay was very comfortable. I was treated with appreciation and dignity by the staff. Not one made me feel less than for having to go through such a procedure for my weight. I came home on the following Wednesday, January 11, 2012 in the afternoon.

Now this is another story altogether!


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