Tummy like a Banana

Me and my vertical sleeve


Approximately 3 months post-op

Approximately 3 months post-op - can't believe how boring I look

When I started to look into bariatric surgery, it was really difficult to find anything describing the whole journey. I saw many posts on message boards and WLS pages but I couldn’t really find a step-by-step description . I wanted to know where to start, how to start, which steps I have to take and what is unnecessary.

Luckily I am not in the process myself and I can now make it much easier for other people in my situation. Of course, everyone has their own journey and procedures are different depending on your issues, your insurance coverage, where you are and what your background is.

I am pretty sure someone with serious obesity comorbidities (Wiki: the presence of one or more disorders (or diseases) in addition to a primary disease or disorder, or the effect of such additional disorders or diseases) has a very different approach than me who has more or less nothing. I am luckily healthy as a clam aside from being fat, and my most recent blood pressure was 104/72 but maybe I can still help someone get on the right path. And if not, this will be a very nice place to come back to and look back over my journey.

I hope you enjoy reading as much as I enjoy writing this!


7 months post-op

UPDATE (2011-06-13):

Here is another picture, which was taken last weekend. We attended the wedding of my niece Sara in Pentwater. It was a beautiful ceremony, and Chuck took this picture of me. The weather was fairly cold and gray – but it perked up for the wedding.

It was the first time that I really got to parade my new body around, wearing a dress and being so comfortable. The reception was held in a fairly small room in a restaurant – I am sure you all remember what that feels like, trying to squeeze your morbidly obese butt through rows of people. Excuse me – I’m sorry — Pardon me — May I just…  and all the while going bump, boink, ding, dang, squish with every chair, every table, every person in the room. There are few things more uncomfortable than being morbidly obese in a tightly packed room — I am so very glad this is over and I am able to enjoy myself without being the fattest person in the room that always seems to be in the way of everyone and everything!

Looking at the pictures, the change in my face is not all that much, but the change in my body between the 3 month and the 7 month is just amazing!


  1. I love your blog. I’ve been reading several, as well as the online forums…and this is my favorite. You really capture what it’s like to live with a banana tummy. Thanks! (Still in the “thinking about it” stage)

    • Thank you! Thinking about it is a good stage. I had been on and off thinking about for years almost. For the longest time, I was convinced that I can do it without the help of the sleeve, but at one point I just had to admit that I need help. I gave up – and I don’t think giving up is a negative thing at all. I think it is a smart thing if you realize you need the help. People say the definition of insanity is “doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results” – and I realized that my dieting fell into that category. While I tried different diets or “life style changes”, I always got the same result – not losing weight.
      Anyway, I have not had any regrets, not once. I don’t know you and everyone is different, but I can say for sure that I would do it again and I wish I had done it earlier.

  2. Hi, I had VSG on 11/17/10 (around same time as you). Looks like you are able to eat bigger portions than me. I wish I could eat more. Do you know what size bougie the doctor used?

    • I believe I have a 34. If it looks like much, I usually do take small breaks if needed to “listen to my stomach”. It seems like we are close, but I think 2 weeks are quite a bit more than it seems considering I am only 10 weeks out and you are 8 weeks out. It’ll get better, I am very sure about :-)

  3. Good mornig Susanne. I found a post of yours on the verticle sleeve web site about a 5k you were doing and I almost spit my coffee out I laughed so hard. God bless you! I will be following your blog. I don’t know you but i am so excited and happy for you. The words you said about being so glad to be done with morbid obesity are words I can’t wait o be able to say. I go on July 26th for my sleeve and can NOT wait.

  4. Hey, I found your website through a completely random (and unfortunately one I can’t remember) Google Search, and I just wanted to let you know I enjoy reading it. I too am going in for surgery with GHP, I’m seeing Dr. Kemmiter – but I’m glad it worked out for you!

    The similarities in our website names also totally made me laugh. I didn’t steal the idea I promise!!

    Either way, love the writing. Hope you do well!

    Take care.

    • Great minds think alike I guess :-) I am very happy with GHP. I was a little bummed at first because they made me pre-pay doctor’s appointments but now at over 6 months out, I am very happy that I didn’t have to shell out money for every visit. Are you located in the GR area (just asking because of your Chicago company)?

      • Yeah, that bummed me out too, but I guess the logic is exactly that, you won’t have to shell out for followup. Makes sense I think.

        I’m back and forth, my family’s located in GR so I’m there all the time. I’m 3/4 in Chicago and 1/4 in GR is the easiest way to explain it, I think!

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