Project Ramona: Marionette Mona
11/6/2012 9:25:00 AM
I've been in Charlotte for almost 12 years and this is the first time people are seeing a healthy Ramona. I realized that lots of folks don't understand how UNhealthy I was when I got this message from a Fox News Edge viewer last week. She wrote:
- Ramona I would just like to say that I think its great that you have lost all the weight you have, but I am sitting here watching you on The Edge and you are starting to look sickly. Please start eating again.
Thanks for your concern, but my doctors say I'm doing great. I weigh 152 pounds... not hardly anorexic and thankfully no longer considered diabetic.
I'm well aware that my chubby cheeks have been hiding some signs of age on my 40+ year old face. Vanity prompted me to question LIbby Shaver, the surgical weight loss coordinator at CVMC, and several post-op gastric bypass patients about sagging skin and droopy boobs. I HATE the marionette lines around my mouth (http://www.ehow.com/list_5932301_exercises-marionette-lines.html) and the stupid exercises they recommend don't work AT ALL. I've been buying B cup bras but my breasts have told me, in their new Eeyore from Winnie the Pooh ( http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4chZa7N7vGo) voice, that we need to donate the B's to some charity. I'm sure there's a group somewhere collecting bras so that women around the world will sag no more.
But I won't trade the lines on my face or the tiny baggies hanging from my chest for diabetes. Remission rocks!!!! I know I wasn't emotionally ready to make the life changes years ago, but I'm glad Catawba Valley Medical Center was there when I was ready back in January. When I ranted about the viewer's "sickly" comment I got so much love from my Facebook friends! It made me wish that every person who, for whatever reason, gets told that they "look sick" gets support from somewhere. I know in my heart that woman didn't mean to be cruel. When it comes to diabetes, most people have no idea what "sickly" looks like. It isn't until you lose your sight, your limbs or your life that most people start taking your illness seriously.
I spent last Saturday morning at the diabetes walk. There were about 1000 people participating! I met Andre who lost his mom to diabetes complications. I talked to Julie who has lost over 100 pounds. Stacey Simms and her son walked for the kids fighting Type 1 diabetes. Gastric bypass is not a cure for diabetes, but it has been an effective tool to help me get my sugar under control. The day after my surgery, I left the hospital with no need for my meds. More research is needed so that one day we can replace the word "remission" with the word "cure." Until that happens, let's make an effort to the support people fighting diabetes with words of encouragement.