How medical weight loss works: The help is inside

Before: My daughter, Miakoda, and I on a once-in-a-lifetime trip to Europe during the Summer of 2019. After: April 2021

After more than nearly 20 years of failed weight loss attempts, I feel like I've finally found what works for me.

I'm sure I'm forgetting some when I tell you that over the years, I've tried more than 20 different programs and have spent thousands and thousands of dollars.

The programs that have weekly meetings and calorie or point counting? Been there. Multiple attempts. The programs that test your DNA? Done that. A personal trainer at the gym? Yep, tried that, a few times. A program where you check in daily, and if you forget they track you down on the phone? Yep!

Side note: I'd even get creative and attempt making up my own "diets."  My favorite was the "OOO" diet, only eating things with an "OOO" sound in the name, so I'd only eat fruit or soup. Then a friend said "what about cookies," and that was the end of that.

I'd follow the program, to the T, and sure I'd lose some weight. Then I'd inadvertently self-sabotage. After a bit, I'd get bored of the program, lose interest or go way off plan for even just one meal and think to myself, "Welp, I may as well give up."

I was getting in my own way and felt stuck in a perpetual cycle of yo-yo dieting.

My daughter, Miakoda, and I on a once-in-a-lifetime trip to Europe.
Before: My daughter, Miakoda, and I on a once-in-a-lifetime trip to Europe during the Summer of 2019. After: April 2021

On a more personal level, in the last 2 and a half years I've experienced a couple of life-altering events that provided an opportunity to really look inside myself, including how I treat myself. Another opportunity that came was a position at Nebraska Medicine. Without this, I may have never known that the bariatrics team offers nonsurgical weight loss options!

I decided to try the medical weight loss program and I made an appointment with Brianna Johnson-Rabbett, MD.

Right away I knew this was going to be different. Dr. Johnson-Rabbett listened and understood my years of trials and tribulations. She wrote down the medications I was taking already and knew exactly what they were, how they worked and how they would work (or not work) with any medication she'd prescribe to begin the weight loss.

For me, this is why it's different: the help is on the inside. For me, all these other programs were external forces that consisted of things that I needed to remember or, in some cases, force myself to do (or not do!). The medication I take daily is telling my body and my brain what to do, internally.

That's made all the difference for me.

So I know you all want the numbers, right? In five months, I lost 45 pounds. I was able to lose it over the winter holidays and working from home, during a pandemic, constantly surrounded by food. 

I've never lost that much weight on a program before. Nor have I been able to stay on a program for this long! It's so empowering. I walk with my head a little higher, I feel better about myself and I treat myself better. My clothes are getting loose and too big (shopping trip!). I even bought a swimsuit for the first time in many, many years. (I used to say I was allergic to swimsuit material!)

I really feel like this time, the perpetual cycle is ending. And I have Dr. Johnson-Rabbett and the bariatrics team to thank for it. Not to mention the cheerleaders in my corner: my daughter, boyfriend, family, friends and co-workers. And, maybe myself a little too. To quote Dr. Johnson-Rabbett, "Be kind to yourself."