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Up Close & Personal

Get to know the innermost thoughts of our writers as they discuss topical subjects from current affairs, water-cooler conversations ...
or whatever might be occupying their grey matter at the time in Up Close & Personal.

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In June of 2016, I learned that an enemy ship had fired torpedoes into my side. One torpedo took the form of chest pains that send me to the emergency room. The tests showed a strong heart, but the cardiologist wanted me to have my gallbladder checked.
The second torpedo took the form of gallbladder attacks requiring an immediate cholecystectomy (gallbladder removal surgery). The third torpedo kept me in the hospital nine days fighting the resulting streptococcal sepsis.
At five feet seven inches tall, I weighed in at 327.5 pounds (148.55 kg). It only took a look in the mirror to see who had fired those torpedoes.
I did. At me.
Well, a compromised ship needs to be repaired, so, having tried just about every weight loss program in creation and finding myself at the end of my rope I sought the help of a bariatric surgeon.
I had a sleeve gastrectomy on December 28, 2016, a surgery that removed about 70% of my stomach.
It was a couple of years ago at the neighborhood school bus stop when I first met Jane and her only child, Michael. He and my older son, Adam, were both starting second grade, and it was the typical morning routine of sleepy kids lined up, traces of breakfast on some of their faces, others with backpacks half zipped, waiting for the big yellow diesel bus to come chugging up to the stop. Moms or grandmothers stood nearby, steam curling from their mugs of coffee as a light rain fell.
This week, we received a response to our article Diabetes: An Introduction by one of our readers who was happy for us to share her comments with all of you. We welcome you to write to us about anything and everything and if you think it might help someone else, we'll post it on here. Thank you so much for reading our articles and being willing to have these conversations - human to human.
Worldwide, obesity has doubled since 1980. In 2014 the World Health Organisation (WHO) reported that 1.9 billion adults were overweight with 600 million of those being obese. Obesity kills more people per year than being underweight and it is preventable. Bariatric surgery - weight loss surgery - are surgical methods to help people achieve weight loss. This year, Texan writer Rocky Hatley underwent surgery to achieve weight loss. As at the time of posting, Rocky has lost 42.18kg (93 pounds)!
He's written a three part Up Close & Personal account of his journey for us. You can find Part I here and Part II here. This is the third and final part. Thank you Rocky for sharing this unique personal insight into your experiences.
Worldwide, obesity has doubled since 1980. In 2014 the World Health Organisation (WHO) reported that 1.9 billion adults were overweight with 600 million of those being obese. Obesity kills more people per year than being underweight and it is preventable. Bariatric surgery - weight loss surgery - are surgical methods to help people achieve weightloss. This year, Texan writer Rocky Hatley underwent surgery to achieve weightloss. He's written a three part Up Close & Personal account of his journey for us. This is the second part. Read Part I here and Part III here. Thank you Rocky for sharing this unique personal insight into your experiences.
Worldwide, obesity has doubled since 1980. In 2014 the World Health Organisation (WHO) reported that 1.9 billion adults were overweight with 600 million of those being obese. Obesity kills more people per year than being underweight and it is preventable. Bariatric surgery - weight loss surgery - are surgical methods to help people achieve weight loss. This year, Texan writer Rocky Hatley underwent surgery to achieve weight loss. He's written a three part Up Close & Personal account of his journey for us. This is the first part. Read Part II here  and Part III here. Thank you Rocky for sharing this unique personal insight into your experiences.
According to Perinatal Anxiety & Depression Australia (PANDA), one in seven new mothers and one in ten new fathers experiences postnatal depression or anxiety. In this latest Up Close & Personal essay, Diana Kirk shares with us her intimate experience with postnatal depression following the birth of her first son.
Have you ever faced difficulties in your job because of your gender? Have you ever had to work harder to prove yourself in your role simply because of your sex? Unfortunately people encounter discrimination everyday for many reasons, including their gender. Guest writer Diana Kirk let's us into her world owning and operating a company in the male dominated real-estate industry where sadly, even in 2017 misogyny is alive and well.
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