Part 5…

So last time I had gotten to the point where the scales nearly carried me…
Over the following 3 weeks I was on a mission. I almost became obsessed with doing everything I could to make sure I ate within the 1,500 calorie a day limit. At the time I was so big that exercise was out of the question.

The day of the nutritionists visit came. We sat and talked how I’d been doing and how I felt in general, I was desperate to get on those damn scales..

So the time came. I kicked off my shoes and stood on them

100, 200, 300, 304.5kg it stopped!!!! It was reading a weight and it had stopped! I wanted to cheer, shout, scream!! After nearly 5 months of utter disappointment we finally had a weight to register! 

She could see how pleased I was. I could feel a lump in my throat. She told me to keep going as this was only the beginning and there was a lot of hard work to go. 
First thing I did was FaceTime my brother Steve. I told him that the scales finally carried me! His face lit up. He told me he was proud of me. I said my goodbyes and put the phone down and cried. 

I rang my dad. Again after the conversation I cried. Same with everyone. Newts, Betty, Gaz, Trev. I wanted to tell the world that at last the hardest thing I was facing in my life was finally starting to pay off. 

I spoke to the nutritionist and she estimated that my starting weight would’ve been in the region of 325kg (716lbs) or in English 51.17st… 

So now we had a registered weight the work really began. With Christmas on the horizon I knew it was going to be a tough one to maintain if I could. 

The psychiatrist came out and he asked me to step outside and stand by my wheelie bin with him for a few minutes. In the pic you can see how close it was to my front door. And I was panicking like mad being that far outside.. 

I could feel my heart racing and my anxiety kicked in. He asked how I felt. I told him that I wanted to be back inside where I felt normal. Being stuck inside a mental prison as much as a physical one (due to my size) it felt safe to be in my living room.. 

Again he was astounded to know that I could go from a happy go lucky man just 10 years before to a man so close to the edge of not being able to fight back. 

But fighting back was only just the beginning of it all….

Part 4…..

So now I’m going to fast forward a little to the September of 2015. 

Every time the nutritionist came out the scales still had the same message (ERROR). Although I was finding the changes easier to deal with, I still missed the foods that got me to this size. 

My friends had been excellent. Even going as far to offer to eat any takeaways in their cars rather than in my home in front of me. We are a strange bunch of lads. We make fun out of each other in the harshest of ways but it’s never meant in a bad way. And even though we argue, it’s forgotten as quickly as it starts. Even though we’re not blood, we’re family. During the darkest times my friends and family have been such a support it’s hard to explain the love I have for them all. The biggest thing anyone who is in the kind of position I was in, support is the most important. 

In mid September I had my usual 3 week visit with the nutritionist. She asked how I felt. She also said I didn’t have to try the scales if I didn’t want to. I told her that the whole point of her literally dragging them in to me (they’re that big) was that one day I’d get a reading.

So on I stepped. It started to count. 100kg, 200kg, 300kg,  ERROR!!! My heart sank. But then, it kicked in. 4 months of the effort was finally starting to show. The scales still didn’t carry me but they counted for the first time! 

It wasn’t much but it made me realise I was getting somewhere. “Next weigh in will finally give us a reading” she said. 

The Psychologist came to visit too. He gave me a booklet to write down goals I wanted to set myself it varied from standing outside for 10 minutes to walking to the nearest shop (approx 100-150 meters away) looking back these are all so small steps it makes me realise just how ill I had become.. 
Again, if you know someone who’s struggling, forward them these blogs to read. Show them that they’re not alone and nobody, absolutely nobody is beyond help. 

Part 3…..

So the changes begin. We totalled up how many calories I was consuming per day and we had an estimate of anywhere between 4,000 & 5,000 per day. 

Myself and the nutritionist talked about a realistic goal of calories per day. She said that I should really aim for about 1,500 to start the ball rolling. Let me tell you, when you’re trying to fit everything into those 1,500 it’s a task. So I started to make changes. Out went the full fat milk, sugary cereals, normal mayonnaise and sugary drinks. In came skimmed milk, weetabix extra low fat mayo and sugar free cordial (squash) 
I felt absolutely terrible. I had gone from eating at least 7 takeaways a week to having 1 treat meal. Which was beef curry with rice normally. 

I had also gone to having a sandwich thin with slice chicken breast, not having butter but spreading the light mayo as a substitute. It was hell. I hated every day of it.
3 weeks later the nutritionist visited again. I stood on the scales ERROR! I couldn’t believe it. 4 weeks of not enjoying what I was eating for nothing! I felt like a failure. The nutritionist could see it in my eyes.. “you’ll get there, it’s not going to happen over night” 

I knew that it wasn’t going to be easy but this was like hell for me.

 The psychologist came and visited regularly and told me if I needed anything to message him. To be honest out of all the help I’ve been given he’s been the one that fought for everything. He mentioned the chances of surgery and that it was going to be very hard for them to arrange anything whilst I was still the size I was. 
He mentioned the possibility of a pre op stay to get my weight as low as possible but nothing would be confirmed for a while yet. 

To be the size I was at this time was horrendous. I was in pain all the time. I was going “cold turkey” from drinking coke all the time, mood swings, headaches were the main issues from stopping drinking it. 

This pattern continued from May 2015 till about October 2015 then we had a glimmer of hope, I’ll go into that on my next post. 

The picture below was taken Dec 2012 I got a lot bigger after this but look how ill I look in the face… 

I just want to thank everyone for the response to these posts. If you think someone needs help, please share the posts, get them to leave a comment and let’s help people get their lives back. 

Part 2….

So in my last post I got to the point where I had finally admitted that I was not going to live for much longer without help.

My GP had ordered some blood tests to see if I was diabetic, referred me to the nutritionist and psychologist, and assured me that we will do what we can to get me better.

Straight away I was put on antidepressants and a variety of pills to help me fight the infections caused by the abscesses also pain killers too.

My first visit with the nutritionist was really upsetting to be completely honest with you all. She was lovely and very encouraging, but the scales she had with her were a maximum capacity of 300kg. She asked me to stand on them and they didn’t even register a weight. They just went to the error message without counting up. That’s when the reality of the situation I was in hit home.

We discussed my eating habits and what improvements I needed to make, subtle changes that would help me lose weight. I’ve never been an eater of fruit or veg so the options were limited. She never once forced any changes, she merely made suggestions which in my honest opinion made things a lot easier for me. I was told to keep a food diary so she could keep a track of my calorie intake and see where I was going wrong. She said it was not going to be easy as I was so big that I had to lose a lot of weight before surgery could be possible.

Later that day  I met the man who has from day one, fought tooth and nail to get the surgery done. The clinical psychologist. He sat me down and we talked about how I came to this point, why I hadn’t left my home in so long, why I felt the way I did. We set myself small targets, something as basic as standing outside by my wheelie bin for 5 mins.

He asked me to walk to the door and check my heart rate when I walked back. Shockingly my heart rate was 159bpm, just from walking 10 steps!! I felt knackered just walking less than 10 metres, I also felt so ashamed. When both had left I broke down in tears. Feeling like this was beyond the point of return and that  I was never going to be “normal” again.

But the next day I woke up and felt that I had to give it all or there’s no point in wasting everyone’s time.

And most importantly I didn’t want to die…

The Importance Of Support

In 2013, I had become so big that I had to have home help in the mornings. I really cant describe how embarrassing it was to allow another grown adult help me wash, dry and have to allow them to get me my breakfast.

Looking back with hindsight the warning signs were screaming at me for changes to be made. I don’t know if it was pigheadedness or just down right laziness but it came to that.

The support I got from the carers, firstly the council ones and then Derbyshire Care Services was first class. I was in a bad way and these people came into my home and didn’t judge me, just wanted to help me. Some have become close friends and I’m so grateful for them.

Also a massive support have been my friends, Newts, Gaz, Trev, Beesla, Rueben & Steady were the main ones and at times others such as my “Band Of Brothers” Stoakesy, Danny, Deano & Glenda. At some point I’ll speak to them on camera (If they’re willing) to get their views and feelings on how I was heading to disaster and what it means to them to see me trying to get my life back. But without these people as a collective, I’d be a long time dead. And also my family who I’ll talk about in depth later.

 

There is no weakness in admitting you need help, if anything it takes an immeasurable amount of strength to admit that things are getting to you.

If you feel like you need help talk to someone, anyone to get the help you need.

I’m new to this so be patient….

I’ve always been a “big lad”, over the years I’ve been active, played a lot of sports but in reality my diet and lifestyle was never the best.

Over the years I’ve also had to deal with a lot of personal issues that I’ll no doubt go over in due course.

My weight started to get worse in around 2008/09 due to my cravings for Coca Cola, take away food and lack of exercise. In April 2015 my weight had reached an astonishing 51.5st (716lbs)

I kept getting abscesses and infections on a pouch of skin that had formed beneath my stomach on my bladder area. These would become so painful and regular I’d be spending at least 5 days a week in bed, but at this point I’d become housebound and hadn’t stepped outside in approx 3 years..

Something had to change. I had been moaning about the pain on Facebook for a while and so many people were telling me to go to the doctors, but I was so used to the pain and the infections that I just let them pass in time.

On the 7th of April, I rang the doctors, unable to cope with the pain any longer.

“What’s the problem?” said the receptionist.

“Everything, I can feel myself dying and I need a home visit” I said

“We only give home visits to the elderly and disabled” She replied

“I’ve not left my home in years, I’m so big I doubt I could get inn a taxi” I said to her, hoping she would see how much I needed their help.

After basically saying I would go to the local paper if she wouldn’t help me she was relenting and said that she would book me in for a visit but would not know what time that would be…

Later that Day the doctor came out, he listened to me break down in tears and tell him how I’ve merely existed for the past 3 years. He then told me that he was going to put me in touch with a nutritionist, a clinical psychologist as the only way to save my life was bariatric surgery.

So this is where it all began in terms of my redemption, I’ll update again soon..

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