Here’s My WHY

So Jack wants to know why. Why did I gain 45 pounds in one year and have kept it on for nearly 13 years? Why didn’t I lose the weight the first time (and the second time and the third time)? Why do I think I’m going to lose it this time?

Why Did I Gain?

Well the easy answer is that I got pregnant. And when I got pregnant, I crowned myself the Pregnant Princess who ate whatever she wanted, whenever she wanted. For the first time in my life I felt free to EAT, and eat I did. I didn’t just eat a slice of pie, I ate the whole pie and then wanted to know what else you could give me to go with it. I can remember finishing off a whole package of Oreo cookies in two days. No lie. I think that was also the month I gained 13 pounds – my OB never said a word. And being the young naïve woman that I was, I thought that once I had my baby (who surely would come out weighing at least 30 pounds) all the extra weight would just magically fall off a few weeks post-partum. Needless to say, my baby did not weight 30 pounds – he weighed 8 pounds, which left me with a lot to lose. And actually I did lose some – I was working retail full time and I really cut back on my food. I got within 15 pounds of my pre-preggers weight, and then I started dieting plans. One after another, I thought that I would lose 30 pounds in 12 weeks, and when I didn’t, I gained a few more pounds and moved on to another plan. With every new plan – failure (in my eyes), even though I was losing at a reasonable weight (about 3 pounds per month), but when you take one step forward and two steps back, you end up more miserable than you were before.

The more truthful and difficult answer to why I gained all that weight is because my world got turned upside down. In February of 1996, I was a new college graduate, I had no job, I was living with my parents, no boyfriend or prospects of meeting anyone, no responsibilities at all really. I was a young single girl, living in her own single world. Fast forward 12 months later and all of a sudden I had a husband, a brand new baby, a mortgage, a full time job, and no idea how to cope with any of it. So I did what I knew how to do – I ate. Don’t get me wrong, the husband, the baby, etc. are the best things that have ever happened to me, but I felt like JILL got lost in the whirlwind of it all. Suddenly I had a new last name; a new identity, and I didn’t really know who this new woman was supposed to be, and let me tell you, it took me a loooong time to figure it out. I was happy, but confused, and my self esteem plummeted over the next few years. The worse I felt, the more I ate and the more I ate, the worse I felt – you all know how it goes. When I got married, I weighed 135 pounds, which really was five pounds above the number I weighed all through college. The last time I did Weight Watchers, I weighed in at 186 pounds, my all time highest weight. I should mention that during that weigh in, I was wearing jeans and a sweater, so I probably really weighed somewhere around 180.

Why Did I Start To Lose Weight?

I lost 7 pounds with Weight Watchers before The Crazy finally caught up with me again and I decided that WW I could just not get along anymore, so I went to my doctor for help. He prescribed me some low dose appetite suppressants and I lost 30 pounds over about 5 months. That got me started, but I didn’t want to take diet pills for the rest of my life, so I weaned myself off of them slowly. I still have about 20 pounds to get back to that weight of 135, which for my 5’3” self is at the high end of what “they” say I should weigh. If I could get down to 140 though, I‘d be happy.

Why Do I think This Time I Will Lose It?

Well, I don’t know. I mean, I’m not 100% convinced I will lose it, honestly. I always seem to sabotage myself just when I get on a roll. I know intellectually what it takes to lose the weight, I just don’t know if I have the drive and mental fortitude to get it done. I’m sure some of you will say that I need to dig down deep and find the drive, but what if the drive isn’t there? What if I dig down deep and find…nothing? I guess this is the last part I need to work on… building my own self-efficacy (and actually I am working on it because there is a group on iChange that I’m a member of called Building Self Efficacy). I’m not sure what it’s going to take to push me to fight for those final 20 pounds lost.

So Jack, does that answer your question? Does my WHY make sense to anyone else but me?

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9 thoughts on “Here’s My WHY

  1. So heres my sad excuse for gaining weight. I put on weight right after H.S. So instead of just trying to lose it, I decided to get pregnant. I gained 45 additional pounds on top of the 5 I had already gained.

    Now is that not the stupidist reason for having a baby????? It took me a year to lose it all. Better frame on mind the 2nd time around. I only gained 25lbs, and worked alot harder to lose it.

    Honestly you dont owe anyone an explaination. It will happen when it happens. My best advice is stop stressing so much about it and it will be alot easier.

    • Oh I know – I DO stress about it too much. And I swear the stress makes the pounds absolutely CLING to me!

      And really, is there ever a stupid reason to have a baby? I don’t think so. Unless you are a crack whore, then it’s so not a good idea. Not saying YOU are a crack whore, just saying that crack whores shouldn’t have babies. Okay I’ll shut up now! 😉

  2. You’re so close! I do hope you keep on going. It makes me sad to hear you say you’re not sure you have the drive to continue. It can be the smallest of steps, the slowest of losses, but still you’ll get there. It doesn’t have to be a dramatic surge to the finish line.

    BTW, I understand about the new, married identity crisis. The first time I had to sign my new name, I sat in a heap in the middle of the living room floor and cried. I didn’t know who this person was, didn’t know if I wanted to be her. Whew! Glad that’s ancient history!

  3. Wow, Jill, that really was a lot to happen in one year!

    And never worry. Persevere…remember, we are going to make your goal weight by the time we are 80 years old!

  4. Something so similar happened to me… I had to keep a lid on my weight, usually around 145 at 5’8″– but it took some work. Then in one year I got married, my mother died, I got unexpectedly pregnant, DH was in grad school and there was no money, inlaws split up after 30 years of marriage… after delivery I was 195 and never lost a pound in spite of breastfeeding and exercise. I think the restraint I had practiced all those years went away, but some of it was adulthood hitting me like a Mac truck. I always sort of thought I could lose it but never did, until I was pretty sure I couldn’t lose it… and then I did, half of it at least. Still have half to go. I have no idea whether I can do it or not.

  5. You and I were pregnant princesses together. I had exactly the same attitude as you did and I kept my weight on for 10 years. I gained 75 pounds during the first pregnancy and never lost it.

    You are strong and you will get where you want to be.

  6. i went from 195 (overweight to begin with) 12 yrs ago to 282 lbs pregnant. Mine was due to gestational diabetes that I wasn’t diagnosed until the end of my 7th month. I only dropped to 250, and struggled for the past 10 yrs, slowly getting back to at least 195, and then it just hit me, and i finally said enough’s enough!! and knocked out the last 30. I still have about 15 lbs to lose to be considered a “healthy” weight, but we all struggle, fight, kicking and screaming, and eventually we WILL and DO get there!!

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