Public speaking is one of the top fears faced by American adults. 20-year-old student Alynn Stapp was no different — until she received a gastric sleeve. Only a few months Dr. Dirk performed her surgery, she was more than confident enough to volunteer to speak in front of the class.
Alynn realized her obesity could only lead to health problems, so she decided to take the plunge and start a new, healthier lifestyle. Losing 100 pounds in six months has been no easy feat for Alynn, but with Dr. Dirk by her side, she says that’s it’s all worth it.
What was life like for you before the procedure? Did you have any health issues?
Life before surgery was tiring. I always seemed fatigued and stressed out. I had no known health issues, but I was on my way to becoming pre-diabetic.
What motivated you to get surgery?
The knowledge that I was headed down a road that lead to a mountain of health issues and physical limitations led me to get weight loss surgery.
How did Dr. Dirk help you throughout the process?
Dr. Dirk was always near the phone, day or night. No matter how silly my question or concern, he was there to provide support. I ended up having minor complications shortly after surgery and he saw me in the hospital a few days later. He found the problem and was able to treat it. He continued to check up on me every single day I was in the hospital, and his staff continued to check up after I was discharged.
How has your life changed since?
My life has changed immensely, from my physical abilities to my social interactions. Rather than staying in and doing homework, I ditch it and hit a hot yoga session with a group of friends. It’s so freeing to be able to do whatever you want to do and not have your own body hold you back.
How have you changed your diet and exercise?
It’s not just my social life and my physical body that have changed, but my entire lifestyle, too. I eat whole, clean foods, not the empty carby junk that I used to eat. Being active is now fun — I enjoy doing things that get me moving and it’s hard for me to stand still anymore.
Was there a specific moment after surgery when you knew your life was going to be different?
Four months after surgery, I was down 65-70 pounds and feeling great. I was in my speech class and the professor needed someone to volunteer to go first and make a speech. We all sat there for five minutes before I stood up and confidently gave a speech I had just written and memorized in front of 45 people without any hesitation or nerves. I knew then that I was a completely different person than I was four months prior, and it could only get better.
What has the response from friends and family been like?
I chose not to make my surgery public with friends and only a select few family members know, but the ones who do know have been my biggest support system. They are incredibly proud and I have surpassed their expectations regarding weight loss.
What would you tell someone else considering weight loss surgery?
If I were to talk to someone who is debating weight loss surgery options, I would tell him or her to make sure they’re doing it for the right reasons. They need to do it because they want to improve their life and be in the best possible physical condition for themselves, not for anyone else. Weight loss surgery is not the easy way out, no matter what other people may tell you. It is mentally and physically challenging, but in the end, it’s all worth it.
Would you recommend Dr. Dirk and why?
I would 100 percent recommend Dallas weight loss surgeon, Dr. Dirk, not only because I trust him enough to cut me open, but because he is straightforward. If you’re obese and stuck with no other options, you need someone who will be blunt enough to tell what you’re doing wrong, but kind enough to help you through the process.
What is your favorite thing to do now that you have lost weight and are living a healthier, happier life?
My favorite thing to do since losing the weight is just simply being outside. Kayaking, paddle boarding, sunrise yoga, even taking my dog to the dog park — it’s all so much more enjoyable now that I don’t have an extra 112 pounds to cart around. It’s freeing when the things you once hated doing become the activities you now lose sleep to participate in.