I’ve struggled with weight since my early teens. I’d like to blame genetics but I’ve always had a bad relationship with food, and binge eating. To top it off my parents were clueless about nutrition so after going for a long walk my mom would give me bananas with sugar sprinkled on them as a “healthy snack”. I feel like I was dieting from the time I was 13 on and never getting anywhere. I had to struggle to just stay a size 10. I joined Civil Air Patrol as a young teen and was very active and that helped keep weight off but once I got older, in high school and then able to drive and go eat whatever I wanted…it got real bad. By the time I was 21 I was probably around 275.
In 2003 I started dieting, exercising and got down to around 225 and was really happy. I met a guy who ended up being my first boyfriend and we eventually moved in together in 2005. All he would eat was fast food. No joke. Eventually I settled into it and back came the weight. After a couple years of it I got on adderall to help me at work and lost about 30-40 pounds. Broke up with my bf and started dating my now husband. Weight came back again slowly. At my highest weight I was 315.
In 2013 I started on Medifast. Between Feb and November I lost 100 pounds. Was so close to finally being under 200 for the first time since I was basically a kid. And then I got pregnant. Coming off a super restrictive diet and being pregnant a lot of weight returned quickly. The latter part of my pregnancy I was diagnosed with gestational diabetes but I buckled down and controlled it through diet and didn’t gain a lot at the end. Had a healthy son and was really loving my life and not focused on my weight so it came back on. I wanted to lose some before having another but time caught up with me and I said let’s just do this and I’ll lose weight after I’m done having kids. Second pregnancy was hard. Required insulin, high bp throughout. Ended in a c section at 34 weeks due to pre-eclampsia. My son was 3lb11oz and spent 8 days in NICU…overall extremely strong and healthy. I spent 5 days in the hospital myself being pumped full of drugs to keep me from having a seizure for high bp, trying to get bp down…which gave me tachycardia and 125bpm pulse for several days straight leading to panic attacks. I was already dealing with permanent tinnitus I developed a couple months prior and overall my health was very poor, physically and mentally. Was afraid of never walking out of the hospital again. I’d sit and cry in my room. Unlike the joy of my first sons delivery having my husband with me and family visits I was mostly alone. Husband would encourage me to go visit my son in the NICU but whenever I did I either felt extreme anxiety due to his size and the pressure to try and breastfeed a baby that was smaller than my boob….or I would be holding him and struggling to stay awake because i had t had more than 3 hours sleep in 4 days. I had to be given Xanax to finally sleep for more than an hour.
There was a lot of guilt and fear and my body felt broken and weak. I spent months at home on the couch caring for my son and helping him to thrive. Today I’m happy to say he’s no different from a full term child even 70% in height on the normal growth scale. I was broken though. I had been suffering from an anal fissure due to pregnancy constipation issues and I spent 18 months in horrific pain. A morning BM would have me in agony until 5pm. Sometimes the only time I wasn’t in pain was during a bath. I finally had surgery for that the following February…2019. I had family who would show concern for my weight…even my husband…and I would just feel so alone in that nobody understood what I was going through mentally and physically.
Fast forward to February 2020. I’m healed, feeling better mentally and tired of being fat. I decide to start medifast again. Going fine for a few weeks and then one of my best friend passes away unexpectedly. He had been living with his wife in another state but he’d been in town the month before and we got together for breakfast and it was so great to see him. I was broken again. Instead this time instead of eating I just stopped eating. I did my medifast but i didn’t care about food at all. Then Covid happened and there was so much about obese people being at risk. So I was afraid. Really afraid.
In the middle of all this we found our dream home and I became incredibly busy planning, dealing with all the logistic, trying to sell a piece of land we owned to help us furnish our new home with furniture, researching furniture…I think it saved me…it made me happy and kept me busy. At some point I moved away from medifast and just started eating healthier foods. I was the one doing the grocery shopping because my husband is 19 years older than me and I figured my risk was lower…so I could control all the food that came into the house. We didn’t eat out as much because at first we were worried to. I was active, moving things from our townhouse to the new house.
We are fully moved in here now. The street we live on is about a 1/4 mile long and on a hill, and back in May I started walking it 3x a week. Now I walk it 5x a week. I do 5-7 laps up and down the hill. I feel like the bad relationship I have with food is gone. When I did medifast I would plan out my cheat times, vacations or whatnot. I remember going on vacay and going to a baseball game where I ate cheesecake on a stick and beer and was so happy. The diet I’m on now…I don’t feel like I’d do that. I have dessert sometimes, no more than once a week. I eat food that doesn’t leave me feeling hungry or wanting something sweeter. I love fruit. We have pizza Friday, taco Saturday, chick fil a tuesdays and I’m able to enjoy that and still lose weight because I don’t overeat other times. Father’s Day weekend we got ice cream at coldstone and I really enjoyed that but when it was over I didn’t run out and buy ice cream at the grocery store. My husband still eats his sweets but I don’t feel the urge to get into them myself. I was gifted some chocolate back in April and I have a piece every now and then and its satisfying.
I don’t know how it happened but I feel like something is different. I feel like I could actually do this forever. Someone asked me “how much weight do you want to lose” and I didn’t know how to answer that. I just said…I don’t plan to stop eating and exercising the way I am now so I guess we see where I stop losing weight and then decide if I want to make any changes or if I’m satisfied. Overall I’m taking way better care of myself and I’m happy with myself. I’m still on bp meds and don’t know if I’ll ever get off them. My biological father died of a heart attack in his early 50s. I never got to meet him. I don’t want to die early like that.
So that’s my story. I always stayed away from these weight loss subs because everybody is so amazing with their stories and I felt like a failure, but now I feel like I have a chance to be one of those stories. I always felt like well I’m losing weight but I’ll never keep it off….but now I think maybe I can.