Weight Loss Surgery: Becky Sawtelle Two Months Later

Before surgery and two months later

Weight loss surgery is a big deal. Sometimes, confesses Becky Sawtelle, she thinks if she had to do it over again, she might not opt for the weight loss surgery she had two months ago. Her issue? “I had a really strong relationship with food,” she says. “Now, I can’t eat whatever, whenever, and how much I want. I miss that.”

It’s a common feeling after weight loss surgery. Some people are over it as soon as they see the weight come off, but for others, like Becky, it takes longer. “It’s only been two months,” she notes. “It’s really early on, I know that.”

In those two months she has lost 56 pounds. Yes, 56 pounds! And that is NOT LOST on Becky. “I’m swimming in all my clothes,” she reports. “I have a pair of jeans I bought 8 years ago. They were still sitting in my closet with the tags on. I decided to try them on and they fit! Before I couldn’t get them up over my hips. I sat on my bed and cried. Oh, my God, I miss food so much, but this makes it worth it.”

Becky’s weight loss benefits

  • Blood pressure normal
  • No longer pre-diabetic
  • More energy
  • Fitting into clothes that were too small
  • Saving money on food costs

It’s clear that even though Becky is seeing lots of benefits from losing her excess weight, she is still struggling. Before weight loss surgery, she admits she “ate like a pig” and mostly indulged in fast foods and snacks. She also loved going out to eat with friends. Now, she has to be extremely cautious about not only how much she eats, but what. “I thought cheerios would be OK, but they made me sick,” she says. “I took two bites of a chicken taco when I went out to dinner with a friend and thought I’d be sick. My staples are yogurt, chili, and waffles with peanut butter.”

She’s also excited to report that she has discovered a protein bar she thinks might be added to her list. Getting adequate protein is crucial, but can be a challenge she says.

Forming a new relationship with food
Becky plans to see a counselor to help with what she sees as a grieving process. “If I didn’t have the weight loss surgery, I’d probably be still gaining weight. I know it’s paying off, but I still really miss going out to restaurants and eating. I just don’t enjoy food any more.”

She has also been looking into healthy cooking classes. For someone who doesn’t usually cook for herself, just learning how would mean a huge shift in how she relates to food. Learning how to cook healthy choices that she is able to eat would be an added bonus. “It’s a challenge,” she says, “but I’ll figure something out. I just get frustrated now. I have to broaden my horizons and incorporate new foods.”

Becky broadens her horizons
Speaking of broadening horizons, Becky recently started a new job and moved to Florida. “I’m really happy,” she says. “Everybody is so nice. I have a nice apartment and I’m making friends.”

She also goes to the gym regularly and takes longs walks with her dog so she’s getting plenty of exercise. She still hasn’t gone shopping for new clothes, but will soon. Moving from Maine to Florida calls for a whole new wardrobe anyway!

We’ll check in on Becky again next month. Keep up the good work!

Diane Atwood

About Diane Atwood

For more than 20 years, Diane Atwood was the health reporter on News Center 6. She's now a regular guest on the Morning Report. Before she became a health reporter, Diane was a radiation therapist/dosimetrist at Maine Medical Center. In 2000, she left the world of reporting to manage marketing and public relations for Mercy Hospital. In 2011, she decided to pursue a longtime dream of being a freelance writer and launched her award-winning blog Catching Health with Diane Atwood.