I want to offer Bob Sampson special thanks for
sharing his success with us. Here is his story:
My name is Bob Sampson and here is my story. I am 44 years old, and
for my entire life, I have been overweight. At my highest weight, I
I grew up in South Florida and as a matter of fact I still live here.
Growing up as an overweight child I suffered all the same things that
many of us experienced. I was last to be picked for anything athletic
in school, I could never wear the cool clothes because, well, they
didn't make them in my size back then, and I got stuck wearing your
grandfatherís sans-a-belt slacks which is just what a pre-teen wants
to wear. Anyway, like everyone I know, I endured all the insults and
taunting which caused me to do a lot of negative things.
As I grew up, I felt ashamed of myself which led me to do a lot of
destructive things. I spent a lot of years drinking and pretty much
living a self destructive lifestyle.
Unlike other overweight people I know, I was very fortunate that I
never had any health issues, which is a miracle. My sugar, my blood
pressure, even my cholesterol are all normal. Considering how I lived
my life, what I ate and how I behaved in general, not to have any of
those problems is an amazing thing.
As I grew older, I started to make small changes in my lifestyle which
began with quitting smoking. I then quit drinking. I then made an
important career change. It became very apparent to me that if I
wanted these changes in my life to mean anything, I needed to lose
weight AND to keep it off. Like all of us I have been on so many diets
over the years that I knew that was not the answer. I never have been
able to sustain the loss, so I knew that was not the way to go for me.
I started researching weight loss surgery in 2004. I decided that
while it is a risky surgery, doing nothing was riskier. I went to
visit the weight loss center at the Cleveland Clinic Hospital in
Weston, Florida. I attended an orientation and decided that I could handle
this surgery so this is where the fun began.
I applied to my insurance company and of course I was denied the first
time. I did not give up however, and spent the better part of a year
weaving my way through the insurance companyís attempts to deny me
this surgery. I was determined to make it happen and after jumping
through hoops I was finally approved for the surgery.
On May 16th 2006, I had my surgery which was performed by an amazing
and skilled surgeon, Dr Samuel Szomstein at the Cleveland Clinic
Hospital in Weston, Florida. The surgery was performed without
complications; however, after the first night, I developed a twisted
bowel and they had to go back in and repair it. After that was taken
care of, I was discharged and sent home.
Over the next 13 months I did what I was told. I took my vitamins, got
my protein in and drank my water, all the things they stressed were
important and which I eagerly did. I exercised and got myself into
shape. As a result of all the things I did, I have lost an amazing
228lbs. I went from wearing a 62 waist and a 5x shirt to wearing a 36
waist and a regular extra large shirt which is loose.
My life has changed beyond my wildest dreams. I have ridden the roller
coaster I have always wanted to ride. I sat in the window seat on a plane. I
have gone to movies and sporting events on a regular basis. And yes, I
enjoy shopping for clothes now, because it is no longer a chore.
And I will be honest. While my life is so much better than before, I
must tell your readers something that is an issue to all of us who
have been fat our whole lives. One of the hardest things I have had to
learn to do is THINK and VISUALIZE myself as a normal sized person. I
had to learn to ask for a booth in a restaurant, take a seat in the
middle of a row, and remember that I do not have to turn sideways so a
person can get by me. All of these small things required me to erase
all my old tapes in my mind. That is a very difficult thing, but, it
is actually a fun and challenging thing. I am learning to live this
new life and realize I can do all those things now, and it is
rewarding. All the things that have come to me as a result of this
surgery far outweigh some of the things I canít do anymore.
It's fun for me to fit into my small sports car. I have energy to
spend the day shopping or walking around a flea market in the hot sun.
I could go on and tell you more of the good things that have happened
to me as a result of this surgery, but I really donít need to. Anyone
considering this surgery should realize how much your life will change
for the better.
In closing, Barbara, I want to thank you for letting me share my
story, and also thank you for your monthly newsletter. I look forward
to reading these success stories because they are motivators. I hope
my story will help someone else out there. Anyone who wants to, can
drop me an e-mail at
I wish all your readers the best of luck in their journeys as well.
good news. If you have good news, a success story to share, or
inspiration, please send it to me at
Barbara@wlscenter.com so that I can include it in future issues.