The journey that started with a phone call

Hello my name is Leanne, I am 42 yrs old and from Battle Creek, MI. I'm writing this to humbly ask for your help. Those words are by far the hardest words spoken. 

I started gaining weight in 5th grade. By the time high school came around I was well on my way to an early grave. I struggled with my weight for most of my life. In 2019, I couldn't even put my own shoes on. I knew that I had to make a change but at 462lb., bad knees, a bad back, and all that weight setting on and around my heart it seemed like an insurmountable task. -Yet I knew that I was never going to live a normal life if a change wasn't made and soon!

I woke up one morning and made a few calls knowing if I didn't do something I was going to die. I made an appointment with a sleep doctor praying that I had sleep apnea. Praying to actually have sleep apnea may sound crazy but I was desperate. The only way my insurance would pay for weight loss surgery is if one or more of the three following things were wrong with me:

•High Blood Pressure
•Sleep Apnea

The day finally came, I got the call that I in fact, did have sleep apnea. I was relieved!!
That same day I called the Bartic clinic and made the appointment.
June 4, 2019 is the day of my laparoscopy and it takes around 2.5 hrs to do.
My surgery wasn't at all easy. The doctor had to cut me completely open! A 2.5ft. cut from my breast bone down past my belly button. I was released from the hospital on June 8th. By June 20th, my staples had ripped out. I went back to my surgeon where he reopened the bottom of my incision and that's the way it stayed; a huge open hole in my stomach that was 11.5” L X 7” W X 2.75” deep! It took almost SIX months to heal. On August 14th after not being able to eat without being sick, I return again to my surgeon to have an endoscopic dilation. (Basically have the opening to my stomach reopened) It was a long year...

I'm now sixteen months out from the day I had surgery and I've lost 220lb!!! As rewarding as that progress has been and sounds, I am left me with so much extra skin. It's hard to feel like I have accomplished anything when there's so much skin left hiding how much weight I've lost. It does not matter how much weight I've lost, when I look in the mirror I still see a fat girl. 

I'm sure as most of you know, cosmetic surgery is prohibitively expensive! This is why I'm asking you for your help. I've put in the physical, emotional, and spiritual work to soldier through the weight loss journey. I’m asking if you could find it in your heart to help me go the distance. Help me achieve my dream and put this chapter behind me!

Here are.some of the associated costs:

Panniculectomy $8,000-$15,000
Lower body lift: $7,900
Upper arm lift: $3,500
Thigh lift: $4,500
Breast lift: $4,200

My insurance will only cover a small portion of this because it is deemed cosmetic surgery.
Everyone deserves to feel beautiful. With your help I can achieve my final goal!! 

Thank you so much for taking the time to read my story. If you can't donate, please consider sharing with your friends!!


  • Donna Hart-Mason 
    • $20 
    • 12 d
  • Nicole Wines  
    • $20 
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  • Camica Rocho 
    • $25 
    • 16 d


Leanne Marie Wines 
Battle Creek, MI

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