For years, I have sought the solution to that extra ten (occasionally, twenty) pounds I’ve been carrying around since I left college. Like Oprah, I have slimmed down and blown up, from guapa to gordita and back again. I have exercised, kept a food diary, juice cleansed, and cooked farm to table meals but pero nunca gone on an actual diet (because it has the word “die” in it). Depending on the consistency and intensity of my workouts and the kind of meals I am making, I am closer to a healthy weight than I have been in years. But I have found the magic bullet! Hallelujah! I now know how to lose excess weight in a week without any sit-ups or crunches, without grocery lists or expensive trips to the farmer’s market, without pills or powders or any other chemicals. Cholecystectomy! Say it with me. Call a sis tech to me! You too can be slim and trim with a simple gall bladder removal.
As planned, I had my gall bladder removed last week. After choosing to wait a few months, it was time to check into the hospital at 6 in the morning. Thankfully, I didn’t have to wait long before I met with my anesthesiologist(a handsome brother with a wry sense of humor; ladies I meant to ask if he wanted to come out to my samba school and meet some of my girls but I ran out of time) and my surgeon. After botching the first attempt at setting me up with an IV, the nurse got an IV going on my left arm and wired me up like the Bionic Woman. Then I was taken into the OR and I was strapped down like they expected to perform an exorcism on me. The doc struck up a convo about the grammatical skills of high school students and before I could bring up Samba Funk, I was out. As predicted, I woke up in recovery to the nurse saying all had gone well.
My love joined me and he told me the surgeon said they wouldn’t be sending anything to pathology. There were no polyps or cysts; I had gallstones. No waiting for results! But before I could respond, the fun, as in not, began. I haven’t been that sick since I was pregnant with M. I couldn’t even keep down water. I spent the day in a heap on the bed.
Each day has brought improvements. Last year’s extensive recovery had prepared me for the frustration of the physical and emotional challenges and the small victories. Taking a shower, eating a meal, walking around the block are all small miracles I know to not take for granted. Being able to take deep cleansing breaths and laughing, without pain, showed my progress. I still wake up nauseous. The incision sites still ache. But I am definitely recovering.
While it’s true that I have lost some pounds, I don’t recommend this method of weight loss. What I do recommend is prevention. The research is divided on what causes gallstones; however, being overweight is a contributing factor. Most people choose to continue living/eating status quo after a month of recovery. I have decided to modify my eating habits for life. I am giving up alcohol and processed foods and I will be committing to being mostly vegetarian. As my Team in Training coach used to always say, health is wealth. I would like to be wealthy for many more years to come.