Victoria's story

Prior to weight-loss surgery in August 2006, I had been overweight my entire life. I was the “chubby kid” who never got picked for games. I was the “fat girl” who never got asked out on dates. My teen-age years were torturous. Kids can be cruel and can always find new and inventive ways to pick on the “obese kid.”

I started dieting around the age of 8. For more than 20 years, I tried absolutely everything under the sun to lose weight. You name it, I had tried it.

After struggling with my insurance company for five long and hard years, I was finally approved to go ahead with the surgery. I did everything I felt was necessary to be sure I was eligible for this surgery. It wasn’t that I just wanted to be thin or was trying to look good. Rather, I wanted the surgery because I was (and am) happier than I could have ever imagined. I have an amazing husband who adores and supports me, and I have true friends. I didn't want to die at 55 - morbidly obese, diabetic and with heart disease like my father. I wanted to be able to do many of the activities I was never able to do. I wanted to be healthy to go along with my happy.

Since I had tried everything possible to lose weight and nothing seemed to work for me, I decided to use what I felt would offer me a permanent, healthy solution. I knew the risks involved with bariatric surgery. Any surgery has risks, but also I knew I would die if I didn't do something. This surgery was not a quick-fix and I did not enter into it lightly.

In the first six months after my life-saving surgery, I lost 125 pounds. Since March 2007, I’ve lost approximately 170 pounds. I still have almost 30 pounds to go before I reach my personal goal. I exercise regularly and have recently added yoga to my regime. I have gone from a very tight size woman’s 28 to a size 8/10. I am able to do so many simple things that many people take for granted. For example, recently I flew to Florida and was thrilled to be able to sit in the airplane seat comfortably and not have to get a seat belt extender. It's little things like this that are so enjoyable.

Today, I am enjoying a much healthier life than I could have imagined. I owe my success to Dr. Berger and the team at FMC’s Bariatric and Weight Loss Center – and of course, to my wonderful husband, who loves me no matter what. I know, without a shadow of a doubt, Dr. Berger and this surgery saved my life.