Abigail is a Streamline gastric bypass surgery patient who has lost over nine stone. “Before surgery daily tasks such as showering, walking the dog, and socialising with friends just was too much.”
“I felt like my weight was holding me back from lots of opportunities; like new roles, a new job or socialising with friends. Even taking pictures on holiday, which were your memories, I would totally avoid that. I just felt like I was stuck inside someone else’s body that wasn’t mine.
“I had tried lots of different options; fad diets, detoxes and Slimming World. I’ve got a whole bible of things that I’ve tried, which have just been unsuccessful.
“I struggled with my weight from a very young age. The breaking point for me was quite sad actually, I’d closed myself off from all my friends and my family. I wouldn’t go and visit my family because I was too paranoid about what they were thinking of me. You know, it’s not the version of me they had ever seen before. The pain, in my lower back and my joints, became such a problem that I couldn’t even walk to the end of my garden path.
“That’s when I hit a really low point in my life where I was like, I can’t go on like this. It was not just scary for my family and my friends, but for myself, I didn’t know who I was anymore.
“Now, I feel like a whole new person and I’m able to do the things that I felt like I was missing out on before.
“I’m back to my bubbly happy self which had been lost for a very long time. I want to go out and socialise now and I love taking the dogs out and I’ll have gone for long walks and be like, do you know look at me. The best part about living my life now is living the pinch-me moments.
“This time last year I would have never gone out and spent a day without being covered in black or wearing a jacket to hide myself. Another pinch-me moment is this summer I wore a dress, the last dress I wore was at my prom which was about 10 years ago.
“I’m just happy, really happy. My family feel pleased that I’ve had the surgery, they are more likely to see me now, in fact, they see me a lot more now.
“There is one pair of jeans that I’ve kept, they are a size 26 and I’ve kept them because when I bought those jeans, I had an absolute meltdown because they were so tight. So, I’ve kept them and every now and then, pull them out and try them on to feel the intense happiness and the gratitude that have now for them fallen off me.
“I chose Streamline because I had been through the NHS pathway and it wasn’t a success for me. You don’t get that high level of support that you do with Streamline and that’s been the deciding factor and also why I would recommend them to everybody who’s thinking about it.
“I have absolutely no regrets at all. I want to go on the trips, and I want to take photographs, whereas before it was avoid, avoid, as I was so deeply unhappy. Where now I feel like I’ve been reborn.”