The last 8 months has no doubt brought a major change to one Texoma mother who we've been following for the past year after she underwent weight loss surgery.
While we have all seen these types of stories before, Newschannel 6 Anchor Ashley Fitzwater wanted to go beyond an explanation about a surgery. She wanted to follow Irene for a year to help those in Texoma looking to make the same the decision, get a realistic look at what life would be like after going under the knife, so they headed back to Decatur as Irene hit the scales one last time for the Newschannel 6 cameras.
Irene's final weigh-in was 248.8 pounds. She lost 86.2 pounds in just 12 months. A great achievement, but Irene was a bit let down because she was just 13 pounds shy of her 100 pound goal.
"I was beating myself up this morning because I've been disappointed in the plateau I've hit for 3 months. I had to re-think, because as the forum states the honeymoon is over." said Irene.
But the slow down is normal. My Bariatrics Solutions Nurse Practitioner Sharon McLemore talked to us when Irene's appointment finished, and said when you live with yourself everyday, it's easy to forget how far you have come. So she encourages people to think back on things you can do today, you weren't able to do.
" I tell people to save a pair of those pants when they were at their heaviest and pull them out when you hit a plateau so they can see how far they have come." said Nurse Practitioner Sharon McLemore.
Something that didn't take long for Irene to do, especially after hearing how many inches she lost in a year! She's lost 1" around her neck, 18" around her waist, 9" around her hips, and 4.5" inches in her thighs, just to name a few areas. The grand total of inches lost since surgery is 48.5".
"I've come a long way in a year, drastically a long way." said Irene.
In a recent "timed" work-out she got in 200 air squats, a big change from the woman she was just 365 days ago.
"No where in my mind would I have been able to even do 10 air squats much less 200." said Irene.
We also caught up with Arianna on her mom's progress who has no doubt been a huge part of Irene's journey.
"I think the most valuable part of the procedure to me is the fact that we have been able to bond because of this process and our relationship has gotten even stronger. Which most people can't believe because we are so tight." said Arianna.
Arianna says her mom's health is number one, but she's quick to point out the best thing is her mother's boost in confidence.
"That's affected everything. What kept her dong cross fit, keeps her going out with friends, dating, and getting self esteem she's never had. It's just great to see." said Arianna.
While getting off medication, being healthy and being able to watch her daughter one day walk down the aisle has been the focus, Irene has gotten other benefits she didn't expect. Like the desire to one day walk down the aisle herself as a bride!