Friday was the day for the first session in the process of having gastric bypass surgery, also know as bariatric surgery. I was to arrive at 8:30 am to fill out the paperwork and be ready to attend the group information session starting at 9:00 am.
I left extra early, because I did not want to be late. It was made expressly clear in the preliminary info package to be on time and to not miss appointments! Given that this is something I would love to have done years ago, you can bet I will not be late or wait a minute longer than needed.
After navigating the parking garage, I found my way to the Bariatric Clinic on Level 1 of the Humber River Regional Health Centre. The hospital was large, bright, open and modern. I checked in with the receptionist and took a seat. Here’s a really nice thing I found – they had double wide seats!! For once, I didn’t have to wedge my butt into a tight seat with metal arms digging into my flesh. Thank you to whomever was thoughtful enough to order those chairs! The waiting room was quite full, I would estimate about 40 people.
At 9:00, those of us there for the information session were guided up to the 3rd floor and instructed on to a conference room. We signed in, gathered up more papers and information packets, and found a seat. The session was lead by a dietitian, with no condescending mannerism towards fat people. The session lasted about 3 hours with a quick 15 minute break for a coffee.
During that time, we learned about the actual procedure, the process of eating before the procedure as well as reintroducing food after the procedure. We touched on ways to prepare ourselves for the change in eating. It was suggested to start making small changes now to be sure that you have those well integrated into your life by surgery time.
Our homework, prior to the next visit/assessment, is to familiarize ourselves with the procedure, know the stages of food after the surgery, and keep a journal of our eating to help recognize our habits and weaknesses. We are also encouraged to commit to a small change and record our progress. I’m thinking I should start walking 3 times a week. I guess it needs to go beyond thinking and just put my damn feet on the pavement and move!
I’ll let you know how it goes!