Weight Loss Surgery Success Story: Mary Gadson
Who would have thought that I would be taking cycling classes and buying size 12-14 dresses again? I’m living now.
— Mary Gadson: Adjustable Gastric Band Surgery, 2007
“In high school, I was in track and basketball. I didn’t start to have a weight problem until 10 to 15 years later. After the birth of each of my two children, I continued to gain weight. And during that time, my mother, who was overweight, died unexpectedly of a heart attack.
“Sixteen years later, my 52 year-old husband, who was not overweight, but was a smoker, died unexpectedly of a heart attack. When he died, it brought back all those memories of my mother’s death. She had died at age 63 and I was bigger than she had been. I had always just been healthy, but now I could see myself heading toward a brick wall.
“I was wearing size 28 dresses, and when I realized I couldn’t buy pants that fit me where I shopped, it was an eye-opener. I had not been exercising. I ate whenever I was happy, sad or stressed. I drank sodas all day and did a lot of snacking. If I opened a large bag of chips or cookies, it would be gone the same day. I had something in my mouth all day. At my favorite place to eat, I would order a triple bacon cheeseburger, large fries and a large vanilla milkshake.
“Shortly after my husband’s death, I tried to lose weight by dieting and couldn’t do it. I would lose two or three pounds and gain more back. It was difficult and uncomfortable to put on my shoes and socks. I tried walking, but was miserable, so I started working out at an exercise facility. I did my homework and attended a bariatric seminar. I looked at the pictures and thought, ‘maybe I can do this.’ I decided to have the surgery.”
More than two and a half years after her adjustable gastric band surgery, Mary has lost 128 pounds and is continuing to work toward her goal of attaining a healthy weight. She can now wear pants. She no longer eats the way she used to and she exercises regularly. She says that her feet and knees don’t hurt — even after a good workout in an aerobics class.
“People say that I look younger now, not as tired. Now I look like I am my 16 year-old daughter’s mother, not her grandmother. I now have a social life, also. Before, I didn’t go to family reunions because I was so big. Who would have thought that I would be taking cycling classes and buying size 12-14 dresses again? I’m living now. You can live to live (day by day) or you can live to LIVE!!
“I would recommend the program at Scott and White. In today’s microwave society, people are taking shortcuts, which can be dangerous. At Scott and White, they didn’t take any shortcuts or rush anything. Step one was attending the seminar and step two was attending classes. Each step of the way, I had to do my part and they did their part.”