Shondele Hall faced a dilemma. Her back pain was so severe that she needed surgery. But her weight was too high for the procedure.
“I was to the point that I couldn’t walk,” she said. “I couldn’t stand for three to five minutes without my legs going numb.”
Hall, 52, of Lexington had tried for years to lose weight, but it wasn’t working. She’d lose pounds, then gain it back.
“I just wasn’t living. It was very depressing.”
She finally made the decision - “the best decision I ever made” - to have weight loss surgery. Her doctor recommended one center, but Hall didn’t feel welcomed when she called them. So she checked in with the Center for Weight Loss Surgery at Saint Joseph East.
“When I spoke with Karen (Hillenmeyer, center director), I just remember that she made me feel like, ‘this is OK. This is going to be good,’” Hall said. “I can’t stress how amazing everyone (at the center) is.”
Hall had her surgery in June 2021 and had lost 87 pounds by the end of the calendar year. She admits she has a long way to go until she reaches her full weight loss goal, but getting under 300 pounds has been a milestone for her.
So has some of those nonscale victories. She’s able to walk around the store with no need for one of the riding carts and no numbness in her legs. Her first trip to an outlet mall when she was able to walk around it was overwhelming. “I could not stop crying because I was so excited because I was walking,” she said.