Six Years and Counting: Mayday, Mayday

Six years ago on this very day, I decided once again to try and lose weight. I’ve battled my weight my entire life, but on January 21, 2008, I decided it was time to take responsibility for my weight gain and take steps to shed the pounds I’d been accruing day by day. I weighed 261 pounds that day, and while I was completely dismayed by that number, I was determined never to see that number on the scale again.

Six years later, I can say that I have never seen 261 pounds on the scale again, but I’ve seen plenty of other numbers more times than I’d care to admit. After losing 80 pounds in the first two years, I struggled to stay on track, and then I got pregnant in the summer of 2010. Obviously, weight loss was on hold when I was pregnant and remained on hold until after Charlotte was a few months old. When I began to try and lose weight in earnest in the summer of 2011, I was in the high 190s but motivated to see that number diminish. Even then, it took me a long time to gain any momentum, and it took me eight months just to get into the 170s.

I stayed in the 170s up through October of 2012, and then weight loss was once again put on hold when I was diagnosed with ulcerative colitis in November 2012. At my sickest, my weight dropped down to 150, and while that didn’t last long, I celebrated my 5th weight loss anniversary in 2013 at 167 pounds, a weight I hadn’t seen since right before I got pregnant with Charlotte. I was ecstatic to be at that weight and thrilled that for once losing weight wouldn’t be one of my annual goals.

Of course, faithful readers of my blog know how last year turned out. I struggled to feel well, fighting the effects of ulcerative colitis until August, when I finally began to feel better. Yet even after I felt better physically, mentally and spiritually I was not in a good place. I was worn out and defeated and discouraged by the weight that was slowly creeping on. I saw it coming, and yet I did little to stop it. I developed bad habits that contributed to the problem, like staying up really late at night, snacking more often, and drinking soda (even REAL COKE) on a daily basis. I didn’t even attempt to count calories, and my attempts to exercise were halfhearted at best and non-existent at worst.

Thus, for the first time in many, many years, I ended the year at a much higher weight than where I started. Here I am, 6 years later, still not at my goal weight. Here I am, 6 years later, still struggling. Here I am, 6 years later, having gained 25 pounds in the past year. TWENTY-FIVE POUNDS. It pains me to even write that, but it’s the truth, and I have to be honest, right? Honest is part of my blog title, after all!

Though I am embarrassed and frustrated by this weight gain, I am already taking steps to reign in my weight gain and re-establish the healthy habits I let myself neglect. I’m not where I want to be, but the good news is, I’m also not where I once was.By the grace of God I have managed to lose and keep off 70 pounds. By the grace of God I will keep fighting this battle. And by the grace of God, I will finally know, deep down, that I am fearfully and wonderfully made, and the power of that truth will be stronger than the number on the scale and stronger than the doubts in my heart.

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Christmas 2013-Me with my favorite people. They don’t care how much I weigh.

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From right to left: 261 pounds, 230 pounds, 220 pounds, all taken in 2008.

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