Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Breakfast at Epiphany's

Current weight: Dunno. But I'm eating a bag of popcorn instead of a bag of chips. Is that good?

Current mood: Buttery and Salty

So after mentally processing all of the requirements necessary to satisfy the AETNA Fat Police and thinking that it's easier to get a divorce in this country than it is to get insurance to pay for anything preventative, my thoughts turned to the gale-force gastric bypass winds that howled forth from the Good Doctor earlier in the day.

Truthfully, it felt like the Wife and I were well within the blast radius of an atomic bomb, minus the skin-peeling radiation and whatnot. Yes. It was THAT bad. No hyperbole here at all.

And we didn't see it coming at all. There we were, all relieved that our lengthy visit was coming to an end and WHAMO, the Good Doctor steps in all ninja-like and slaps us in a gastric bypass front face lock. I'm fairly certain that if it weren't for the 50 other potential gastric bypassers comfortably seated in his waiting room, he would have cinched it in until we tapped out.

I started the day confident in my Lap Band decision, knowing the risks and maintenance involved in having a mechanical device put into my body. Now I was doubting myself and considering the re-routing of my digestive tract as the lesser of the two evils.

Not so long ago, evidently, gastric bypass surgeries were performed with the reckless abandonment reminiscent of the Old West. No standard procedures, no regulation, whiskey used to sterilize big-ass Bowie knives .. (OK, maybe I made that last part up). That's why, said the Good Doctor, you always heard such horror stories about gastric bypass surgery.

But 'round about 2006, things changed. Regulators started regulating, and standard procedures were put in place. Heck, it can even be done laparoscopicly now. Things are so ducky in the gastric bypass world that the Good Doctor has ditched his comfortable Lap Band britches and now proudly hawks the bypass as his weight loss surgery of choice.

To prove his point, he produced a set of numbers showing his increase in bypass surgeries and related decrease in Lap Band surgeries since the Regulators whipped those no good Gastric Bypass boys into shape. To further prove the point, his benefits coordinator offered up that the Good Doctor has performed the bypass on six ... count 'em, SIX ... members of his own family (what that says about the relative health and eating habits of the Good Doctor's family, I'm not sure).

As for the Lap Band, he all but guaranteed that I'd be back to see him within five years to have some sort of procedure to fix, adjust or flat out replace. Why? It's a mechanical device, and by nature, mechanical devices wear out.

The debate dominated the conversation between the Wife and I for the rest of the night and raged on in my head well into the wee hours of the next morning. But when I awoke from my two hours of sleep, I had a moment of clarity. A gut feeling, if you will.

The choice is mine. And my choice is the Lap Band. I can deal with the fixes and adjustments. Hell, I can even have the thing taken out if I want. But I can't have my colon unwired. That shit is permanent. I trust that the Good Doctor will get on board with my decision and drop all that gastric bypass prattle like a hot colostomy bag (colon humor - HA!).

So when my gut talks, I listen. Of course, that's the reason I'm so fat in the first place.



  1. Like any good journalist, I'm sure you have multiple sources. You've spoken to people who have had the band and spoken to people who have had the bypass, right? If you need me to hook you up with some interviews, I'd happily oblige.

  2. I'm glad to hear you didn't let anyone (even a medical professional) talk you into something you didn't want in the first place. And if the doc doesn't get on board, insurance hoops or not... he's not the only doctor in the world! I enjoyed the colon humor by the way. JYN