Lisa’s Story

Happy afternoon, friends! As I mentioned in my post this morning, I am going to share with you Lisa’s story (note, Lisa is not her real name). My intention in sharing Lisa’s story is not to respond to any comments or encourage additional discussion around previous comments, but keep us all on our toes as we continue to navigate our own healthiness journey. While being healthy is important, we need to make sure that it doesn’t take priority over our life. Living. Laughing. Being.
 I encourage discussion in the comments but leave the
 drama for you’re mama. If you have something
to say, make it valuable for all readers. You
can be candid but you can word your
candid response in a respectful way.
For today’s post, I will take initiative to delete any comments that aren’t productive to the discussion or each others journey.

Lisa’s Story:

This was me at 22. I thought that I had life all figured out. Married, owned a house, had a good-paying job.
I got the idea in my head one day that I wanted to loose a few pounds. I had hit *gasp* 138 on the scale, and I was starting to have a roll on the top of my size 8 jeans. I REFUSED to buy double-digit size pants. I vowed to eat healthy and get fit. So early in the morning of March 9, 2005, I laced up a pair of never-used-for-running tennis shoes and set out for a jog. I didn’t stop running for the next 1.5 years.
This is what I looked like in July of 2006:
I had withered my body away to skin and bones and wore sweat shirts in the summer heat because even the downy white hair that covered my body was not enough to keep me warm. I sat on a pillow so my bones wouldn’t grind into chairs.
This is me on my 23d birthday:
You might ask how someone could do this to themselves, how they could let it happen. By all accounts I was a level-headed, intelligent person. Surely I could see that this wasn’t healthy, right?
On a deep level, I knew that I wasn’t OK. My life circumstances, however, made eating and exercise a safe haven away from my troubles. Thinking about food, meals, snacks, and working out left me no time to deal with my marriage or low self-esteem. I tried to see a counselor once at this point. She asked me if I thought I was fat, to which I replied, “No.” Apparently I was OK in her eyes. I didn’t go back after that session.
The one thing I did take out of my hour with her was this: She asked me what I liked about myself. I sat, and I looked at her, and I started to cry. I had nothing to say.
After my 23rd birthday, I thought that I had “fixed” my issues and that life was going to be OK. My husband and I were on better ground, so I didn’t take the time to deal with my own personal issues. Instead, I ate. A lot. Anything I could get my hands on went in my mouth. I made up for the lack of food the prior 1.5 years.
This is my on my 24th birthday:
My absolute WORST fear came true – I gained all of the weight back (which the first 40 lbs of I needed) plus 60 lbs. In reality, I swapped one compulsion for another. I became rather depressed; I quit my job. I wallowed in self-pity and sugar for 5 months. I binged at least once a day, and I just wanted someone to lock the fridge up, tie my hands down, and save my from myself.
At this point, I caved. I didn’t want to care about what I ate or weighed. I wanted to get up in the morning, put on some clothes, and go to work. Period. So I found a job, and once I had health insurance, I found a therapist.
We talked about me, my marriage, my childhood, my worries, my fears…..but we didn’t talk about food. Not once. As the sessions went on, I noticed that my binges were fewer and farther between. I started to care about how I looked. I bought clothes that fit me well. I ate what I wanted to and didn’t measure or count anything. Guess what – I started to loose a few pounds, and all I ate was pizza!
My therapist saved my life. I found a sense of self far greater that what I ate for breakfast or what size pants I wore.
I’ll fast-forward to me pregnant and due in June of 2008. Our pregnancy was 100% planned. I had come to a point of accepting my body and wanted to “move on” with my life. I wasn’t going to wait to have kids until I lost some weight. I had experienced a healthy pregnancy and gained the “normal” 30 lbs
We have a beautiful son, and I found that while taking care of him, I was taking care of me, too. Walking was a great way to feel active and get fresh air. Brett (our son) and I walked most days, and I ate as I felt I needed to. I truly felt at home in my body.

This is me today:
That’s not my (adorable!) baby, but that is my genuine smile. I feel happy. I know that life can be hard, that I can and will fall flat on my face. That’s finally OK by me. I am following my passion for jewelry and gems by studying online with the GIA, and I’ve joined clubs and networked in that industry with the hopes that someday I’ll be a jeweler. I found my “it” and my “worthwhile” in life. No one else makes my feel complete – I am finally whole all on my own. My husband and son are wonderful, but they’re just the icing on the cake.
So yes, I mean it when I said that you need to “leave your food in the kitchen.” It has no place in your day-to-day or minute-to-minute thoughts. Try something new, go find a hobby, and start living your life instead of planning your meals.
A great quote that I read sums it up:

“I would rather eat pizza with friends than eat a perfectly balanced meal all by myself.”

And by the way, I weight 136 lbs now. What a trouble I put myself through to lose two pounds!
___________________________

Comments

  1. harleneg says:

    Aloha Lisa

    my name is harlene. i am so blessed to have stumbled across your website.

    My heaviest was 170, i was tired of eating two cheeseburgers for breakfast and still hungry afterwards. I knew i needed to make a change because i was only 19years old.

    so i did, i got real obsessed limited my food intake and ran everyday (sometimes up to 2-3hours) then i got really skinny 120

    then i went on vacation for 3weeks and i got out of control like you i made up for the lost 2 years of ristriction. I gained some weight and when i got home from my vacation my eating did not stop!

    im still recovering mode but im having high hopes that i will find balance.

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