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I was a thin, healthy girl, never had to worry about my weight, EVER. Then I became a young woman and still weight was never an issue for me. I was always active, a jock even, and enjoyed being active.  But things change, your body changes and you find you can’t eat the same foods as much, your life changes; you meet THE ONE and you get comfortable with him and you let yourself go a little, you stop exercising, eating foods you never tried before and then you have children; you put on weight and you feel huge so you’re tired all of the time and then the baby comes, and well, exercise? what exercise, who has time.

I had the added burden of dealing with my traumatic childhood, in and out of counselling, not that I thought I was all done but because I dealt with stuff and thought okay that’s over with. But then something would happen, a let down from my dad a confrontation with my mom or sister and it would be there staring me in the face again, all the ugliness and pain and hurt. So I would go back into counselling and go over it all and see what I had missed. I lost myself when my mom left and when my dad remarried and I started seeing myself in a different light.  Gone was the confident little girl who wasn’t afraid of anything, I saw a girl who was putting on a happy face because that’s who people expected me to be and who I was before.  But inside, I was broken, discarded and lonely.  I saw a girl who had slowly started to hide behind the acne, the weight. I couldn’t see the beautiful woman that God had created, I had lost myself a long time ago and was trying to find me, I know it’s cliche but it’s true.

So, three years ago I went back into councelling and my hope was that I would find myself, the little girl that got lost when her mom left. So, in regards to my weight, I looked in the mirror one morning, saddened at what I saw and said “God, help me to see myself through your eyes.” And that’s when it started, I didn’t want to look this way anymore, not that I had to be thin but that I had to be healthy. Physically, emotionally and mentally healthy, I just had to find a way to lose the weight.

I had tried Jenny Craig but it was too expensive; I had tried a low carb, low fat, count your steps  program, but I don’t do well with restrictive diets/weight loss programs because I’m all gung ho at the beginning but then I start to miss the foods I can’t have and start sneaking and cheating.  Then in January I went to see my doctor about an abnormal blood sugar test that was done at a hospital for another issue and he told me that I am borderline diabetic.  Not a surprise considering the fact that diabetes runs in my family on my father’s side, but not this early as it is adult onset diabetes and I’m only thirty-nine. As it turns out it is in large part due to my weight, 195lbs, so his orders, not recommendation, that I go on a no sugar diet, six small meals a day and an hour of sweat producing exercise five days a week. Oh man, no sugar, not good. But, as it turns out it was not as difficult as I thought it would be. I found a plant based sweetener because my doctor had said no artificial sweetener and I have to have a little bit of sweetness in my coffee and tea and I found cookies, for my tea, that were okay by the Canadian diabetes whatever. So, in three weeks with no sugar and no exercise, I lost fifteen pounds.

The no sugar thing has been easy, I know it’s shocking, but I do allow myself a treat once a week.  Cupcakes are my weakness, whatever is your go to treat, have that. As for the excercise it has been more difficult, only because I’ve been slipping back into that complacent state of mind that I have to break, but I’ve also been going through some personal stuff that had to be dealt with.

The bottom line is that you have to be able to look at yourself in the mirror and say you are beautiful because God created you and He doesn’t make mistakes. Find that part of yourself that got lost somewhere along the line and see her as the beautiful girl that you are. And as for the food part of it, cut out as much sugar from your diet as you can, exercise till you’re sweating profusely at least three times a week, small portioned meals more often throughout the day, no artificial sweeteners, treat yourself once a week, and believe that you’re beautiful.

Today, I am 180lbs and I still have a ways to go but it isn’t hopeless.  I haven’t been exercising enough because I become complacent and find excuses, but if I want to happy and helthy and live the life I want to have I to comply with doctor’s orders and buckle down. So, onwards and upwards to a healthy, smaller me.

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