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Happy July Everybody!



Boy, do I ever have two fabulous stories to share with you this month! First let me tell you about Patricia!

Patricia (new_attitude2007) had been overweight since she was in the fifth grade. She first started trying to diet at age 15. Overeating had always been a part of her life. “I had to eat everything on my plate that my Mom dished up. She put enough for three or four people! I can remember being so full I was uncomfortable and felt sick. But, we had to eat everything.”

Patricia’s three sisters and Mom were all overweight too. Her Mom was diagnosed with diabetes, and finally lost the weight. But then, her Mom died of a heart attack at age 48, when Patricia was only 20. Patricia did not want to follow in her Mom’s footsteps. She finally got into the habit of doing aerobics every day. But, her bad eating patterns, learned in her childhood, continued.

Like most of us, Patricia tried many diets throughout her life….even my Deal A Meal. But, she just never stuck with it. “I think I was always serious when I first started dieting. But, something always easily got in my way, distracted me, and I was not interested.” We all know what happened next. When she went off plan, the pounds came back on.

In 1992 she was diagnosed with a dysfunctional thyroid after putting on more weight. Then, she fell into a depression and turned to food again. The gaining continued. Patricia eventually reached her highest weight of 310 pounds on her 5’ 2 ½” frame!

The weight had its consequences. She had to deal with rude comments from strangers, and embarrassing situations. Once, while visiting her sister in law, she sat down, and broke the chair! A relative wrote her a letter about her weight…and another drove her to Weight Watchers to join. But, Patricia just wasn’t ready to make that commitment. She says, “I still didn’t have the drive to lose, even in those situations.”

Patricia says her turning point came when she finally let go of her past. She had to let go of things bottled up inside of her. She sat down with her best friend, who happens to be her husband of 17 years, Marc. They had a long talk about all the things that were bothering her. “I had my cries and it was such a relief to let it out! It’s no longer bothering me. I have let it go and moved on.”

Patricia is a member of my clubhouse, and has been following my online FoodMover…. “I know how healthy it is, and it’s a plan you can stay on for life and not temporarily. It’s a lifestyle change. Patricia has lost 90 pounds and wants to lose 90 more! She’s half way to her goal!

Now Patricia is fitting into smaller clothes, and she’s able to do housework, and work in her yard, without getting out of breath. She’s able to go to the park with her two boys and play on the swings and just plain have fun! “I missed out on so much not being able to play with them. It’s almost like I’m making up for lost time. I really enjoy the feeling. I feel alive again!”

“For so many years, I did it for someone else, and now I’m doing it for me. There is more meaning behind it. I pray every week for God to continue giving me the motivation and courage I need. I know I can do this because I’m doing it NOW. Marc is a great support to me. Richard has also helped me out so much and given me such motivation to lose. I do have angels watching over me!”

Now, for our second July story, let me introduce you to Kathryn. Kathryn had a very difficult childhood. She was molested by her grandfather as a little girl, and eating went hand in hand with their “secret.”

“My grandfather had the keys to the city and I mean that literally, he worked for the reservoir system and he had keys to all sorts of secret places throughout the city. He would take me on his rounds with him. We would go to lots of public places first, and he introduced me to everyone. We would stop and eat and then he would take me into an out of the way station, or secret room underground, and he would molest me.”

“All the while he filled my head with a combination of professed love and threats to kill my loved ones if I ever spoke of any of it. He proved it one day by killing a little barn kitten right in front of my eyes. I had to do as he said. When the deed was over he’d treat me with a special dessert… something yummy.”

Kathryn came to learn that the more she ate, the slower she ate, the more times she asked for seconds, and the more she could prolong conversations while in public… the longer she could stay there and avoid being alone with her grandfather again. Eating became her way of delaying her grandfather’s abuse. No matter how full she became, she’d keep eating… eating and talking, talking and eating.

Once Kathryn was about 10 years old, she learned to avoid her grandfather. Then, when she was 14, he died of a heart attack. “It was both the saddest, and happiest, moment of my life,” she says.

Kathryn began to feel good about herself! After her grandfather’s death, she lost about 30 pounds. “That's when I discovered Mrs. Bowling's Modern Dance Class. I loved it and her. And just a few years later I watched Richard Simmons on GeneralHospital for the first time.” Kathryn began to dance every day, and eventually got down to 122 pounds!

Then a man swept her off her feet. She became pregnant, and got married. Then, abuse came into Kathryn’s life again. Her husband began to beat her. Kathryn escaped that marriage. She then married again. She divorced her second husband when he went to prison for life. Then, Kathryn met yet another abusive man! “So...in a state of abuse, confusion and I don't know what, I slowly began to grow my fat shield again. I guess I thought that if I was fat, he would not want me anymore.”

Kathryn quit dancing, and quit taking care of herself. She threw herself into her children’s lives and tried to become “Supermom.” “But that lead to more beatings and more abuse...I crawled into a shell, was literally a zombie, I ran on automatic and just sort of checked out, went into a deep, deep depression.” Kathryn finally decided to go back to college. But, her home life was still bad, and she still wasn’t taking care of herself.

But Kathryn did NOT let things stay that way! “It took me 13 years to finally grow a backbone and throw that man out, to finally realize that I was worth more that this. That I was a person who did not have to sit back and take the abuse.”

Kathryn began caring about herself more, and started to work on her self esteem. Then, she met her current husband, and her life changed for the better… except…they ate out a lot, and she gained more weight. But, otherwise, life was wonderful. She was laughing and dancing again. But, her weight continued to climb until she reached 249 pounds!

Kathryn’s turning point came when her back was hurting in July 2006. Her chiropractor recommended rest, and her husband made a bed in the living room floor for her. When Kathryn needed to get up to go to the restroom, she couldn’t get up from the floor! She was too heavy for her husband to lift. But, working together, they finally got her up. Then, she went to the hospital, where she found the wheelchair was too small for her. At 249, Kathryn vowed the scales would never reach 250!

In three months, she lost eleven pounds. Kathryn has a best friend who she’s known since 3rd grade, she and her friend used to dance together to my workouts in the 80’s. Her friend told her what she thought she really needed was support…Then her friend did something wonderful. She gave her a birthday gift of a membership for my clubhouse!!!

The morning of her 45th Birthday, Kathryn began her membership with “Kathryn” as her webbie nickname. “The membership has changed my life.” Kathryn has been an active member of my clubhouse, posting on the boards, coming to chats, and using the online FoodMover. She has now lost 50 pounds! She just went below 200 and now weighs 199!

When Kathryn hit her one year point in her weight loss recently, her husband asked her why she was upset with her weight loss. She said, “Because I was hoping to lose 70.” He said, “Well you didn’t. So, get over it and go on.” Kathryn says that’s just what she needed to hear. And ya’ know what? That’s JUST what she’s doing!

Thanks to both of you ladies for allowing me to share your stories. You’ve both learned what you need to do to reach your goals. I know you’ll make it now!

Love,