Breaking etiquite rules

It was considered proper for a lady’s name to appear in the newspaper on three occasions, only:  her birth, her marriage, and her death.  Well, that one’s out the window.  As I posted earlier, I agreed to write up my weight-loss story and have my portrait taken.  I wanted to share them with you, too.

The new me, after 120 lb. weight loss

The new me, after 120 lb. weight loss

I can truthfully say I never went on the grapefruit diet. I counted calories and went down 2 dress sizes for my wedding. The only other time I got serious about dieting I tried Weight Watchers. I lost a lot of weight, but wasn’t comfortable with the new me, and put it all back on, plus a bunch more.

At my high weight I was having a lot of problems with knee and lower back pain. Stairs were very difficult, kneeling was impossible, and I fatigued easily. My doctor told me weight loss would probably help a lot. I heard her, but did nothing. In addition, I was taking several medicines for high blood pressure and one for cholesterol, both made worse by my weight. Mostly I had come to accept that I would never be thin, and ate whatever I wanted.

The turning point for me was a longevity quiz that Good Morning America posted on its website. The results said “taking into account your family history, and deducting 20 years for the effects of your weight, you have one year to live”. That was enough to get my attention! There on my table was a copy of Zachary Neighbors, with an article about Scale Down. I called, attended orientation, liked what I heard, and was ready to start immediately! The next class didn’t start for a month, so I purchased the entrees and shakes and followed the brochures by myself until class started. That was February, 2007, and there has been no turning back.

The hardest part for me has been changing my mental image of myself. Every week I held my “before” picture in front of me and looked in the mirror, saying “I don’t see any difference”. Finally, I put the before picture away. When I got it back out this week, I was startled at how different it looked – who’s that fat woman? I’m beginning to recognize the new me when I catch my reflection in store windows, but I’m still amazed!

As for my medical problems, they have been greatly improved. I no longer take blood pressure medications, and my cholesterol has been significantly reduced. I did a trial of no cholesterol medication, but because I have a family history, my doctor and I opted to continue the medicine.

I do have arthritis in my lower back and knees, but it is well-controlled with arthritis medicine. I can run up stairs and walk as much as I wish, and once again I kneel in church.

There have been a lot of changes: I’ve gone from a size 28 jeans to size 10! I started with a BMI of 46, and now am 26.5. In just over a year I lost 120 pounds, and I’ve kept it off for another 4 months so far. And that longevity quiz? I took it again recently, and I have my 20 years back!

So, my friends, that is my story.  One of my main reasons for agreeing to all this publicity is that it will keep me honest.  There’s no ordering mega-calorie desserts if your face is recognized by all in the restaurant!



  1. AlisonH said,

    July 30, 2008 at 3:30 pm

    Wow. I wonder if I can persuade my husband…but wanting the results has to come from within.

  2. Linda said,

    August 3, 2008 at 1:44 pm

    Many many congratulations! My year in Africa took me from a size 16 to a size 8; the only reason that happened was a complete change in lifestyle. I admire you for your achievement! And I agree: now comes the keeping it off. 🙂

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