Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Tuesday Check-In #2

Good morning all. I had a nice healthy breakfast today, the sun is shining and I'll be leaving for my Gliding class in about an hour. I've been reading some of my favourite blogs this morning and am moved, as always, by photos of yourselves.

You know who you are, I don't need to name you. It's such a terrifying thing to lay yourself out there, flat on a screen. But, don't you find that it's a little bit easier to do on this forum? We're all going through pretty much the same things. All that's different, really, are the numbers we've set aside for ourselves.

I thought I would share a bit of what I went through before I made the decision to take care of myself. I used to be terrified when I thought about how much I had to lose. I never stood on a scale for at least 5 or more years. Why should I? When I got to that size 20 dress I knew I had a problem. I used to blame it on the size of my breasts. Nothing ever fit over them and used to hang loosely everywhere else. I went shopping at a plus-size store and chatted with one of the gals about how hard it was to find something for the top half. She told me about her breast reduction. Now, I had thought about it before but it scared me to death. The whole procedure sounded awful (you have to remove what?!?!) I mulled it over and decided to book an appointment for a consultation. I went, looked at other before pictures of women with their after shots (faces are left out so it's anonymous). I didn't have the guts and let my chance slip away. I would have to wait at least a year because it wasn't a medical emergency.
I can't remember why I decided to go in to see the doctor again. I would have to wait at least another year before a bed opened up in the hospital--enough time to worry! I think I finally went because I wasn't sleeping, my back and shoulders were killing me (I wore a 44F, 42G--yes they come that big, Sears catalogue!) I worked in a factory and I could barely make it up the ramp to work without huffing and puffing. I booked it and the surgery took place in January of 2001--happy birthday to me!

Well, I can tell you that it was the best thing I ever did. My only regret was that I didn't take off the weight prior to the surgery as my doctor had recommended. Without that shelf of a bosom to block the view, I now saw both of my stomachs!!! My brother has always been brutally honest and he pretty much laid it out for me. I was at work one day in June when the lady next to me started talking about how she had to go back to Weight Watchers. Out of the blue I said to her "Do you want to go together?" Funny, I hardly remember the time after my surgery and before WW. Life started for me again in the summer of 2002. It's weird but there you are. Laurie and I began WW and I have never been so excited about anything. I was so gung ho and I took to the program like a duck to water. I actually looked forward to every weigh-in.

Prior to the reduction I weighed 220 and some change. The doctor took off, believe it or not, 3.3 kg which I think is about 10 pounds. Can you believe what I was carrying on my chest? My starting weight at WW was around 210. I took it in sections. "Okay, just get to 200" Good, there I am. "Now, shoot for 190", and so on. I didn't have a scale at home. Each Saturday was fresh and exciting because believe it or not, in the 8 months or so that it took me to reach goal, I registered a loss everytime but one Saturday. Looking back now I can't believe how well I did. I think a main key in getting to Lifetime was that I didn't stress out over anything. I ate very healthy and had absolutely no junk in the house or out of it. I treated myself to ice cream at the 50 pound stage--I'm talking about a cone, not a gallon. I never exercised, which is weird to me now. All I did was follow the points system. I lost 70 pounds and felt fantastic and EMPTY. That is such a good feeling.

Well, I could go on and on but I think that's enough for now. I'll talk about the ups and downs of life after a major weight loss in another post. You know how hard it is to lose the weight but keeping it off is another struggle altogether.
Okay Katschi, you asked for it. This was the picture that did it for me. My other "fat" pictures didn't horrify me quite as much as this one did. You were there for the whole show Katsch, thank the Good Lord that it had a happy ending!


Scale Junkie said...

What a fabulous story! Thanks so much for sharing a part of your life and the photo that motivated you. I'm sure everyone who reads this will feel the same inspiration as I did!

Manuela said...


You know what I notice more than how big my body was? How small my head looks in comparison. Ha ha!!

Sure, now I can laugh about it.

Carol said...

Very good story - thanks for putting it up. I don't think you look bad in that photo - you look very curvy and guys like that! :) But 10 lbs whew! I don't know how you did it! I'm glad you're feeling better now.

You're doing great - keep it up! :)

Katschi said...

Thanks Manuela for sharing this with everybody! I'm so proud of you and sincerely admire your steadfastness...when you set your mind to something you dig in and do the work...and look where you are now! Fabulous!

40 by 40 said...

Wow--a size G! It's amazing how different you look. By the way, you look great. Know what..I just posted my before photos tonight..just 5 minutes ago..then popped over here! So funny. What a great success story. Thank you for sharing!!!!!