I haven't written a blog in over 7 weeks. I rarely go this long without touching base about my journey and what's going on with me. It's about time for a Save the She Beast campaign update, too.
For those of you who haven't been following the story, I have been turned down a number of times by my insurance carrier for gastric sleeve surgery, despite now having submitted 4 letters of medical necessity from 4 different doctors. I do not have $15,000 for the surgery. My knees and hips are nearly destroyed from arthritis, injury, and my weight bearing down on them, but to replace them before I lose the weight would be worthless. I can no longer walk without pain. I work out every day nearly, and I watch my diet and am CLOSELY monitored by two doctors, but I don't lose unless I am on a HIGHLY restricted diet. The surgery will remove that part of my stomach where the fundus that produces the hormone ghrelin is produced. Ghrelin is what signals hunger. With the fundus removed, I won't feel the pain of hunger and the overwhelming desire to eat that I get when eating such a small amount of calories. My insurance policy has a disclaimer against paying for anything related to weight loss surgery.
My daughter decided in January that she was going to start a facebook page called Save the She Beast and use it to raise funds for my surgery. I've been interviewed and my story has been published in print and online in words and in video.
On February 14th I posted the blog "Links to the Associated Press Article & Video of Me", which you can read if you are interested. www.sparkpeople.com/mypa
On February 24th I posted the blog " Writing a Book, Small TV Appearance, Big Hopes *pics*"
in which I talked about writing a book about these experiences. We were also given a spot on a local tv show called Great Day SA and a few sparkers and some family members showed up to be on camera with me. I got to meet AVIDWISHER (Elizabeth) for the first time and she was a doll. I also had a lot of pictures in there. Some of the pictures show me and another sparker GOLDENDOMER00 (Melissa) who is a Premier Jewelry representative. She held a jewelry party fundraiser at my daughter's home and gave the campaign all of her profits from that night. It came out to $500! The campaign has also run an online fundraiser which raised over $2,300 and a tshirt fundraiser as well. All these details and more can be read in that blog by clicking on the following link: www.sparkpeople.com/mypa
This past month we've been gearing up for a massive rummage sale which was held this past Sunday at Braun Road Automotive's massive parking lot. Braun Rd Auto is owned and operated by Reiko, who is spark member TaMara6905's wife. So many friends and family members worked diligently to make this a success. I sold baked goods (I love to bake) and my brother grilled hot dogs which were sold with chips and sodas during the sale. We had a raffle for a donated electric guitar and a set of hand-etched wine glasses made by spark member MrsSuzStar (Suzan). HealthyHabitGal (Debra) was amazing, driving her van all over creation collecting donated items from her friends, as well as cleaning out her own closets because of the huge amount of weight she has lost. She helped set up and with sales and a willing lap for my 6 month old granddaughter to sleep on. TexasJenne (Jennifer), whom I had never met, arrived on the day of the sale with TONS of stuff from her home to sell, as well as tables for us to use. HeidiJuneBug (Heidi) helped with making signs before the event and was there from beginning to end helping out. AvidWisher and LMTorres came out in a show of support as well. I'm hoping against hope I haven't left anyone out here who is a spark member. There were literally dozens of people donating goods to sell, picking items up, helping to sort and price and everything in between. It was a VERY successful sale. We cleared, after expenses, just over $700. We are now at a grand total of $4,204 out of the $15,000 we need.
I won't put up any links which direct you to any fund raisers for our campaign as it is against sparkpeople rules. But since you know the name of the campaign you are free to go on facebook to find and like our page for updates and information.
Here are some pictures taken during a lull in the craziness of the day at the rummage sale. I'll point out some spark members for you.
In this first picture, from left to right, Debra (HealthyHabitGal) with my sleeping granddaughter on her lap, Heidi (HeidiJuneBug), The She Beast herself, Sarah (my daughter's best friend), My son-in-law Colin, and my daughter Carly.
Here is my granddaughter Robyn, being held by her other grandma, her Nana Elly:
Who wouldn't want to buy from my 4 year old grandson, David?
HealthyHabitGal Debra discovers she is smaller than she thought now that her weight is dropping off again!
My baby brother Woody (he's only 48!) taking a break from grilling the hot dogs to cuddle with Robyn
TaMara6905 flashes her famous smile
David demos the toys for shoppers:
My Dad, PawPawDon (also a sparker!), who will be 80 in July, gave great grandson David rides on his walker when he got a little worn out.
Random pics and folks. The Harley rider was such a fun guy!
The sky threatened to rain all day, but it held off. Even though most of the day was overcast, the sun came out a time or two. Several of us didn't get the sunscreen on in time and got a little burnt, but all in all we had a fun, busy, and exhausting day. I'm so grateful to EVERYONE who helped us out.
The tshirts you see so many of us wearing were offered for sale to raise funds. So many people wanted them AFTER the fundraiser ended that we will be offering them again in May, after my daughter finishes with her finals. Another friend works at a golf course bar which also offers food. She is working on getting a bbq plate fundraiser for this summer. There is a lot going on and more to come. I'm so blessed to have so much love and friendship in my life.
This WILL happen. If you never give up and you never give in, you will get where you want to be.
As always, I love you all.
p.s. I forgot to mention I've lost 14 pounds so far this year!