Ms. Teri is the sweetest lady at the gym and yesterday after intimating to her that I would be gone from the gym for a bit due to having "skin removal surgery" she informed me to simply obey the doctor's orders to a "t" and I'll heal just fine..like she did when she had her surgery. I. Never. Knew. and I realized you never know where help can come from if you don't ever reach out to those around you.
Ms. Teri is a really neat lady at the gym I go to on base. She always has a smile on her face and is ready with a cheerful word of encouragement to those around her. I started getting to know her a bit last fall and currently chat with her a little here and there after a class we both take on Mondays and Wednesdays. She is also a beast in class; quietly working so hard and always saying that she just tries her best, while she casually outworks many of us younger ladies.
Yesterday I got to the gym early and decided to tell her about my surgery prior to the class so she would know where I was when I didn't show up for a month or more. She was so happy for me. Then she sweetly took me by the shoulders and said, "Just do everything your doctor tells you to and you'll be fine. Do everything they say and let yourself heal and you'll be fine. Trust me...I know... [pause] I did and mine healed up just fine."
What?!? I smiled real big. "You've had the same surgery???", I asked her. She said yes she had and shared her story with me. She said she doesn't tell everyone, but is happy to share it when it will help someone else.
She said I could share her story on my blog, then she explained she had always been active, had two very large babies that stretched her skin out a ton. She wore girdles with all her clothing (including workout gear) and after years of doctors telling her there was nothing they could do about the skin she finally asked for a referral to speak with a surgeon after having a hysterectomy just to see what the surgeon would say about the excessive skin.
The surgeon took one look at her skin and told her they could give her the gold star treatment and insurance would cover all of it. Ms. Teri said she and her husband cried at the news that not only could they take care of the skin issue, but they wouldn't have to pay for it.
She said the freedom she felt after having the skin removed when she exercised was amazing. She was relieved from chaffing skin and pain from the excess skin flapping around during her workouts. And she was also relieved from having to wear extra undergarments under her clothing to keep things in check.
The thing she kept telling me what that you can never think someone is perfect or that they don't have problems, because you never know the whole story.
That is so true (as I've said many times since losing my own extra weight). I would never have known that this sweet lady had skin removal surgery. I've seen her as a faithful regular at our gym since I moved here. She doesn't dress in a way that says, "Look at me and my flat abs!!" She simply works hard and I could easily assume she'd never had an issue with loose skin or extra weight of any kind.
Sometimes I'm a little too talkative -- so I'm told -- but this was one time when I was so glad I opened my mouth. Not only was I able to become a little more friendly with a lady at the gym, but I was able to learn more about the procedure I'm about to undergo from a real person. I couldn't have asked for a better person to learn from either.
Ms. Teri has offered me her phone number so I can check in with her after my surgery, she's offered her prayers for everything to go well and we both look forward to when I can go back to the gym and continue working on my new ending ... excess skin not included. :)