Project Ramona: Proof in the Pics
Posted 4/5/2012 5:08:00 PM

Everybody around me could see it, but I couldn't. I could see the difference in my clothes, but when I looked in the mirror, I looked the same. So far I've lost 34 pounds since my gastric bypass surgery at Catawba Valley Medical Center on January 19th. Before the surgery I needed a size 18 for my large shoulders and arms, but I could squeeze into size 16 pants and skirts. A few weeks ago, I put on some size 12 pants and they were falling off of me. I've put myself on a shopping diet because as fast as I replace clothes, they wind up too big just a few weeks later. It's a good problem to have.

The reactions from people are weird sometimes. I've heard "I almost didn't recognize you" and "no way should you lose any more weight!" I just got out of the 190s! I'm at 184. I think I could stand to drop more lbs! People will say, "you look good, but how do you FEEL?" The truth? Physically I feel fantastic. No need for diabetes meds because my sugar is under control. But emotionally, I feel cautiously optimistic. Losing weight post surgery has been easy. What I feel is guilty when people compliment me for working so hard. There are days when I'll eat about 1/2 cup of food and feel Thanksgiving full. I'll be sitting in front of the TV worried that I somehow pigged out, but I didn't. This is the opposite of what my body has experienced every time I tried to lose weight on my own. I never wondered if I'd pigged out. I knew darn well that I had!

Its going so well, that I keep waiting for the other shoe to drop. People have shared so many horror stories with me. I was told I'd be depressed. I'd have poops so stinky it'd make me gag. My friend said her former co-worker ate some veggies that didn't agree with him and had to take a week of sick days. I have no complaints, but I do have a few challenges. Lynn, the dietician wants me to have about 60 grams of protein each day and sometimes I feel so full that its tough to get it all in. It takes me over an hour to finish one protein shake.

I can finally see the difference in the mirror... but pictures tell the real story. A Facebook friend told me to demand that my pics on the station website be replaced with photos of the thinner me. She suggested I untag myself in every fat pic. I'm not going to do it. I want to remember how far I've come since the first of the year. I want other diabetics and people who are obese to see what can be done with the help of a supportive team like Lynn and Libby in CVMC's surgical weight management program. I want the weight loss surgery stigma to go away so that more people will feel comfortable sharing their story. and I want the media to print more stories like this.

Summer of 2011, 5 months before surgery

March 2012, 2 months before surgery

Christmas 2012, one month before surgery

Christmas 2012, one month before surgery

March 2012, 2 months after surgery

Summer of 2012, 5 months before surgery

Posted By: Ramona Holloway  

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  1. Claudette King posted on 04/09/2012 01:20 AM
    You look fabulous. Not sure what mirror you are looking thru; I think it has more to do with you "resetting" your eyes. You have done a fabulous job, and the difference is AMAZING. Be proud and Praise Him!
  2. BeverlyL_6 posted on 04/09/2012 09:22 AM
    You look BEAUTIFUL as you have ALWAYS looked! I am so happy that now you can see what everyone else has always seen. Congrats Ramona!!
  3. LisaD_25 posted on 04/09/2012 10:59 AM
    Wow, Awesome! You look great and I know you feel great! Good job.
  4. Lester Mason posted on 04/09/2012 12:05 PM
    Just stopping by to comment on the new physical you. Reguardless of the surgery you should know that i will always LOVE and respect you not just because your my cousin, but for inspiring others to be all that they can be (Rose/Andra) and then some.I must say the pictures are worth a thousand words but do no justice for seeing you in the flesh.Remember the date June 30th. My camera will be locked and loaded, you know how i do, so you and Aunt Lou be ready..Until then the Mason's Love you guys today and there is nothing you can do about it..Yes proud we are.
  5. butterfly massage posted on 04/09/2012 04:11 PM
    You look absolutely fanstastic! Congratulations on your successes of weight loss and becoming diabetes free...that's so awesome! To be healthy is the best gift you could ever grant youself. Cheers to being excited about being healthy!!!
  6. LindaS_19 posted on 04/09/2012 04:42 PM
    You look great. I wish I could have that done.
  7. melissa posted on 04/09/2012 04:53 PM
    you look amazing! you should be so proud of yourself. you go girl!
  8. Carla posted on 04/09/2012 05:37 PM
    wow! you look just FAB!
  9. DawnH_15 posted on 04/10/2012 09:43 AM
    Damn! You go girl! Look at you, rockin that flirty style with your new bad ass self! Looking great, Mona!!!
  10. NancyG_5 posted on 04/10/2012 10:30 AM
    Looking great Miss Ramona!
  11. Becky posted on 04/10/2012 06:33 PM

    You look beautiful!! Of course you alway have. I've been trying to tell my cousin about your story. She needs helps with her weight and it is causing other health issues with her also. I she is afraid to do this cause of the horror stories she has heard. I would do the surgery in a heart beat, but I would have to gain 40 lbs to even be considered. But need to loose at 50lb.Grrrr Keep up the great work and keep telling your story to help others.
  12. Connie Taylor posted on 04/18/2012 08:10 PM
    Bravo Ramona,
    Listening to your talk with the wonderful staff at CVMC has given me such a great feeling. I am having my bypass surgery April 27 by Dr. Cox. After listening to your story a am so excited to get going. I just started my full liquid diet today and it has been great.
    You look amazing and the smile on your face tells a beautiful story. I am proud of you and your success with the surgery, it has made me know that I have made the correct choice.
  13. Wayne Tucker posted on 04/19/2012 07:08 PM
    WOW!!!! Lookin great girl!! Amazing results in so little a time. Bet the guys have begun beating down your door huh? hehe
  14. JennyS_7 posted on 04/23/2012 03:24 PM
    Wow! You look FABULOUS Ramona! :) And, you sound happy too. You are an inspiration for many others...keep it up.
  15. JennyS_7 posted on 04/23/2012 03:25 PM
    And I love that new outfit that you have on in above picture.
  16. TrishH_2 posted on 08/02/2012 10:16 AM
    Hi Ramona,

    You look great! I have been losing weight too - 43 lbs so far! I feel better, too. I want to lose 30 more. My challenge is that I can't seem to lose my belly. My clothes fit better and I can buy a somewhat smaller size, but not the size I want due to my belly. Someone told me I wouldn't lose it, that I would need a tummy tuck. Unfortuately, I can't afford it. My husband has cancer and can't work. I work, but I'm sure my insurance won't pay for it. Any suggestions?
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