“My hernia was so excruciating that I couldn’t stand it. So when Dr. Perryman told me he couldn’t operate to fix it because I was too overweight, I just broke down and balled like a baby,” said Maile Daly. “I think everyone at the Community Health Center could hear me.”
“I’ve tried everything; why can’t somebody help me?” she asked the doctor. “Weight Watchers, Atkins, nothing works for me. My whole family back in Hawaii is big. We all have stature,” she said.
“That’s when Dr. Perryman told me he might have a solution,” Maile remembers. “He said I could be a candidate for bariatric surgery to reduce the size of my stomach which would result in weight loss. It would also mean that he could, in time, repair my hernia.”
Dr. Perryman explained to Maile that the procedure could be done at Sonoma Valley Hospital. “We checked and learned that my insurance would cover the cost. It was like a dream come true,” Maile said.
The way Maile, a mother of three boys, explains it is that her procedure, known as a “gastric sleeve,” reduced her stomach from about the size and shape of a football to the size and shape of a banana.”
The preparation for the surgery was the hardest part for Maile, who admits that she has a healthy appetite. She was on a strict liquid diet for two weeks before, and for four weeks after, her surgery, and all she could think about the whole time was food. But she made it through. And in fact, she became one of the first patients in the hospital’s new state-of-the-art surgery center.
“You should see that place,” says Maile. “It’s so beautiful, you’d like a house as nice as that operating room. And the recovery room was a-m-a-z-i-n-g!”
She came through with flying colors. The hospital put her in touch with others in town who had had the same type of surgery at SVH and, Maile says: “It was all about small town people helping each other out.”
Eventually, Maile lost enough weight for Dr. Perryman to repair the hernia that had started ball rolling. Maile said the truly amazing part of her story occurred while she was in the hospital, recovering from the hernia surgery: she emailed the Today Show with a BIG idea.
She suggested that she be reunited with her mom on the air for Mother’s Day. She hadn’t seen her mother since the bariatric surgery and, because her mother lives in Hawaii, the cost of the airfare precluded them seeing each other any time soon.
The Today Show loved Maile’s idea. The only catch was that they needed her in New York in less than two weeks. “I called Dr. Perryman right there from my bed and told him, ‘I gotta be in New York City in, like, ten days,’” Maile laughs. “Well, you never saw anybody recover faster than me.”
“NBC flew us to New York, put us up in hotels, paid for new outfits and we went on the show. My mom hadn’t seen the new me until the moment I walked out in front of all those people and cameras. It was totally awesome. We were both so happy!” Maile reminisces.