Last year my wife went for a physical examination and learned she had several medical conditions that were directly related to being "morbidly obese." After consulting with her primary care physician and cardiologist, my wife decided to undergo bariatric surgery. She was referred to the program at Banner Gateway Bariatric Center. Personally I had trepidations about the surgery. I thought dieting was a better alternative. Having never had a chronic weight problem, I could not relate to the frustrations she endured with failed diets over the years. The risks associated with surgery scared me as did the irreversibility of the procedure. However, if that was her decision and the doctor's recommendation, I would give her my full support.
I joined my wife in attending the introductory overview presentation about the different types of bariatric surgery and the comprehensive program associated with it at Banner Gateway Bariatric Center. She applied to be admitted to the program and she was called to set up an appointment with a surgeon. She chose Dr Chen who we heard at the orientation. We discussed the various options and decided that the bariatric sleeve was the right choice for her and began our bariatric journey. I said "our" because we decided that we would undertake this journey together.
As I attended the initial meetings, I gradually changed my views regarding my wife undergoing bariatric surgery. Being with her at all medical meetings and support group sessions was both informative and reassuring. I found the program at Banner Gateway Bariatric impressive and the entire bariatric team totally committed to their patients' success. I became confident we had made the right decision. I doubt if I would have reached that conclusion if I had I not been an active participant. Just as important I knew what to expect and how to best support her through the various stages leading up to and following surgery. I was onboard and was becoming knowledgeable enough not to unintentionally hinder or even sabotage her effort.
Following her successful surgery, both of us continue to attend support group meetings together. I can't emphasize enough how important the support groups run by Banner Gateway Bariatric staff are to her continuing success in achieving a healthier lifestyle. We also learn at these meetings how to deal with the nuances and issues that impact bariatric patients.
Attending meetings together has allowed us to operate as a team. My wife is on the path to a healthier lifestyle and I am happy being able to help her achieve her goals. I have also benefitted derivatively in that I too have a healthier lifestyle through the knowledge I have gained by accompanying her throughout this process.
Thank you Banner Gateway Bariatric Center surgeons and staff for your dedication to my wife and allowing me to be an intricate part of her journey. You have definitely earned the Center of Excellence designation you have been awarded.