DaVita® Stories


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DaVita Teammate Regains Health With Grandma’s Warrior Spirit

My journey started in September 2016 when my PCP informed me that I was borderline diabetic, and she told me I needed to look into ways to lose weight.  In the past, I have tried many diets which may have shown some temporary results, but nothing worked long term or helped keep the weight off. One of the options she presented me with was to have Bariatric surgery, which I was totally against at first. But after time and much thought and prayers, my family and I decided that this was the best course of action for me to take for my health. My main motivation was for my long term health for myself and for my family.

At the same time as I was coming to this decision, my grandma, who was fighting lung cancer at the time, made me promise her that I would go to the necessary classes to have the initial weight loss and have the surgery to help save my life. All the while she continued to fight her battle and showed me that I too had that warrior spirit in me to fight. We lost my grandmother on December 21, 2016, but her spirit lives on in me. Although at times it was a struggle to continue my weekly classes on better living and eating habits, I forged ahead and kept going despite the depression of losing her.

In March of 2017, I had my gastric-sleeve surgery. I have to say it wasn’t the easiest thing I have ever done in my life, but it has been the most rewarding, aside from having my three beautiful children.

Here I am today in 2019, having lost a total of 148 pounds and have kept it off for nearly three years. Not only did I lose the weight, but I am no longer pre-diabetic. I take measures like food prepping and eating several small meals a day to continue my healthy eating habits and to maintain my weight.

I don’t ever want to turn back to where I came from. so I continue working on healthy living. Currently I am in the process on toning up my body and going to the gym to continue working on a better me. Today, I encourage everyone, no matter what their journey is, to remember that there is hope for a better you. You can do it! You have the inner strength to do anything if they put their warrior spirit into it!

This year I was blessed to become a grandma to Delilah Rose. I am very happy that I will be able to be healthy for her and able to do active things with her–things I wasn’t able to do with my children because of my previous weight.

Most importantly, I can pass on that warrior spirit that my Grandma showed me.

Monique Venegas

Monique Venegas

Monique is 41 years old an recent grandma of 8-month-old Delilah Rose. She is married with three children, aged 21, 19 and 14. She loves to go out and about and enjoy life with friends and family. She is a revenue specialist in Irvine, CA.