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Hello all! I just wanted to report back to everyone on the forum that I was banded on the 15th and things are really going well so far. I thought I'd give a day-by-day breakdown so that up-and-comers can see the journey step by step. I originally posted this last week on the main page forum, but realized today it really fits here. Happy reading! lol!

Day 1 - Tuesday, May 13th:

Worked until 3pm, then headed toward Texarkana, TX where I met my mom and we drove the rest of the way to Dallas. Stayed the night there since our flight left the next morning and it's a 4 hour drive from my home to Dallas.

Day 2 - Wednesday, May 14th:

Flight left at 10:55am from Dallas - 3 hours later (11:55am local time) landed in San Diego. Driver was not there, but a quick call to the OCC had him coming around again and I rode into Tijuana and straight to the OCC with 3 other bandsters-to-be, and one young lady who had a slipped band and was there for help. (Her name was Terry G...anyone know what happened to her? She was banded a year ago and has lost all her weight, but she got the flu really badly and the band slipped. I never got to find out if she got to keep her band or not...)

Arrived fasting since the night before and had pre-op consult w/ Dr. Miranda and, after many hours of waiting, got my bloodwork done as well. Afterward, we were taken to the Lucerna (note: they tried to change the hotel to the Camino Real but I called my coordinator, Carolyn, and said that I'd agreed to the package price which included the Lucerna and I wanted to stay there and she made that happen and I am VERY glad I did!) That night was the "last hoorah" meal - my mom and I ate at Rivoli, the Italian restaurant at the Lucerna and it was very, very good stuff. Dave (aka: Dolittle) joined us as we were waiting for our dinner and talked to us about what to expect, the OCC in general, etc. and was super helpful. It really put my mind at ease.

After that, we pretty much just went to our (lovely) hotel room and I had my mom take pictures of me in just the sports bra and panties from the front, side, and back, as well as a close-up of my face. I think I will try to take those pics each month to document progress. We went to bed fairly early and I was very surprised at how well and peacefully I slept. I think after seeing the OCC and all, I was really relaxed about what a first-rate place it was.

Day 3 - Thursday, May 14th:

Surgery day! We were up early and waiting for the driver in the Lucerna's lobby by like 7:45. Since the doctors hadn't been available to do our EKG's the day before, we had to do that today, but it took maybe 5 minutes total and was no biggie. I was told my lungs and heart were good and strong and that I was a good candidate for surgery, so I was excited. A bit after 9am they started pulling us back to our rooms one by one. Anita's surgery was first and she was so excited to get to go that it made the rest of us waiting our turn all the more excited I think. I was called back to my room around 10am and let me tell you, it was the nicest hospital-type room I've ever been in. Aside from the typical bed, there was a mounted tv, a loveseat, and a chair for my mom and everything was decorated so cute! It was realy nice. After a bit, I was given my hospital robe (open to the back, thank you!) and the notorious paper thong to put on *yes, I did say "paper thong" for those of you who may not already know!* and I was surprised to find that it wasn't actually uncomfortable. Before long, a sweet little nurse came in to help me with my compression hose (up to the calf - to decrease chances of blood clots) and she helped me with my spanish and I helped her with her english.

Soon thereafter I was given my "I don't care about anything" pill which just disolves under the tounge and I guess a little after noon I was rolled off into the operating room. I vaguely remember the surgery team getting everything prepared around me and thinking "wow - this place looks just like it did on the online video" before drifting off to la-la land. In what seemed like 30 seconds but must have been about 45 minutes later, I was being awakened by one of the doctors, and was wheeled back to my private room where my mom was waiting. Apparently Dr. Ortiz had come to talk to her after my surgery and told her I did great and that I was "beautiful inside" which cracked me up. I slept for a good bit after getting back to my room and later that afternoon I had some juice and water and could really feel the restriction caused by the swelling around the band. I also noticed some major swelling in my stomach from where I had been pumped full of air for the surgery and it was pretty uncomfortable, but nothing too awful bad.

My mom (and all visitors) had to leave at about 5:30 that night, and I think they all kind of went out to eat together which was nice for the supporters to have some support from each other! I slept a lot and got up and walked a lot. All of us new bandsters put on a freakshow parade walking in circles around the OCC with our silly robes and hooked up to our IV's! It was hilarious! Walking was a must though, and really made me feel better, and I spent the rest of my night walking, watching TLC (in Enlgish of course!) and making some phone calls to the US (which you can do unlimitedly and free from the OCC) and checking my email (again - free and unlimited.)

I slept very well and didn't wake up until about 6:30 the next morning.

Day 4 - Friday, May 16th:

My mom re-woke me up at a little after 8am (was taking another nap - lol!) and we visited and just hung out until I was lucky enough to have another visitor - MamaMichelle!! It was so nice to meet her and she was so sweet to come check on me. I was released from the OCC fairly early and we got a ride back to the Lucerna where I took a wonderful feeling shower and examined my scars in the mirror. Not bad, really! I also took a picture of the tummy so that I can document the incision marks, bruising, swelling, etc. in the future.

After a bit of "lunch" (gatorade) my mom and I took a cab to La Avenida del Revolucion (Revolution Avenue) which is kind of like their market/flea market. You just walk up and down the blocks of street and barter (never pay what they 1st ask for an item - you can usually get it for 1/2 or maybe even less!) and we had such a fun time. We walked and shopped around for about 4 hours actually and I felt pretty good the whole time! I was so surprised how much energy I had and how little I hurt.

That night we had dinner (chicken broth) at the Lucerna again and we ate with quite a few of the other bandsters, which was fun.

Day 5 - Saturday, May 17th:

Another day of bartering mostly. My mom and I went and spanned the rest of the part of Revolution that we didn't get to the previous day and then spent some time by the pool, which is SUCH a great pool. I couldn't swim of course, but I did stand in the water and lay out and actually got a bit of a tan, which was nice! Later that afternoon we went to the mall - just down the street from the Lucerna really - and it was a total waste. It was not so different from malls here in the states and the prices were horrible after being able to barter all day, plus I was feeling tired, so we came back after probably only an hour there. Another dinner of chicken broth for me and we got all packed up and were in bed pretty early since our transport back across the border was early the next morning.

Day 6 - Sunday, May 18th:

Up at 5:30am to be sure to catch the van which left at 6am on the dot. I'd heard horror stories about 2 hour border crossing times and all, but I am happy to report that we were all the way done with crossing/customs/etc. by 6:38am!! Wow!! I guess early Sunday morning is a pretty slow time for the border and I'll be sure to remember that for future trips! We caught our flight back to Dallas by 9am and were back in "the big D" by 2pm my time (Central Standard.) After that, we were shuttled back to our vehicle at the hotel and made the 4-hour drive back home. I was so happy to see my hubby and be on my own couch again!! It was great to be gone but it was also so great to get home!

Days 7 & 8 - Monday and Tuesday, May 19th and 20th:

I took both these days off work and it was really nice. I s l o w l y did some laundry and unpacked, etc. and did a lot of napping and hanging out. It was great to be at my own home and have this time to unwind and heal, etc. I also (possible TMI warning!) started my period Monday and was SO GLAD it came when it did and not a few days earlier!! Whew!

Day 9 - Wednesday, May 21st:

Back to work! Today I've been back to work all day and it really has been okay. I've been asked 10,000 questions of course, but that's to be expected. I'm moving around pretty well by this point and am healing quite nicely. I'm also 13 lbs down as of this morning compared to where I was pre-op, so that's pretty amazing! I know I can't keep up that rate of loss (and don't want to for skin purposes even) but I'm happy to be on my way.

Overall, it's been a pretty amazing journey so far. I have felt at each step that this decision was a good one and that I have been in excellent, professional, caring hands. It has been so great to talk to and to meet so many of you bandsters out there - it makes such a difference to actually know someone who can truly understand what you're going through. I've not had any episodes of PBing or sliming yet, but I know they will come and I know where I can turn when they do!

I hope this epistle hasn't been too overwhelming and I hope it has been of some use to someone who is soon to be at the OCC for the first time themselves. The main thing I would say is just to have faith in the whole experience - the doctors, consultants, nurses, staff, location, etc. Things in Mexico don't really work the way they do in the US - we're so worried about the exact time of our surgery and the Mexico attitude is more like, "Well you're the 4th surgery of the day - whatever time that happens." but dont' let that stress you out - instead, assimilate your attitude to be more carefree and trust that things will get taken care of and all will be well.

Wishing everyone much success wherever they may be on their journey!


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Thank you for sharing.. It will reassure many people waiting to get their band.

Just a question.. the van took you to the airport on Sunday? I didn't realize that the vans ran on Saturday or Sunday. That would be great!

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Hello Amber,

I was the lady in the waiting room going for surgery on the 16th. You came and showed me your incisions. Thanks for being so nice and being willing to share as I was so nervous that day. I too am healing and feeling much better now that it's over. I am really glad that I had it done and although my weight loss is much slower (3.5 lbs since surgery) I am certain that this was the right decision for me. Hang in there and keep in touch.


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