Like many women, there have been many road blocks and detours in my life. Marrying at a young age — much too young — I recognized that happiness does not come from marriage, or from living with someone, or from the temptations of food. I have battled with weight problems all of my life. You probably know the drill. Diets…Diets..and More Diets. I tried high protein diets…Lost weight, only to gain again. I found success for a while after going to a doctor. I lost weight, only to gain again. Over and over I found myself on an endless spinning wheel of weight loss and weight gain.
In 2005, I was diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes. My doctor suggested losing weight, and so I stepped onto that spinning wheel once again. Three months later, I went back to my doctor, discovering a weight loss of 14 pounds. “I’m eating healthier now,” I said, ever so happy of my weight loss and A1C levels.
“I’ve got this,” I whispered to myself on the way home. “I want to lose 30 more pounds.” Little did I know how difficult weight loss would become.
I remembered the last time I joined Weight Watchers without success. Going to the meeting, I saw a beige curtain, with a doctor’s scale. When someone entered the curtained area, they closed the curtain, weighed and hopped off the scale, but the number on the scale was still revealed. Yes, everyone could see the weight of the previous person. I was mortified. I went to one meeting, never going back. If my memory is correct, liver was one of the foods recommended to eat once a week. Since my family would not eat liver and we rarely ate in restaurants, I knew I could not be successful with Weight Watchers; nevertheless, I wanted to continue my weight loss.
On March 3, 2011, I turned the TV on, watching a new commercial from Weight Watchers. Jennifer Hudson was speaking about how she has lost 80 pounds with Weight Watchers. Staring at her, I was envious. I remember saying to myself, “I deserve to be happy, and I deserve to lose weight. Maybe I should go back to Weight Watchers. I want to be slim. I want to wear clothes that compliment my body instead of covering and hiding my body. I can be slim – one day –someday. Sitting at my computer desk, a voice spoke to me. ‘Go to Weight Watchers…Go to Weight Watchers…’ I Googled Weight Watchers, reading about how they had new programs – with ‘confidential weigh-ins.’ I was curious. Just what is a ‘confidential weigh-in?’
Confidential weigh-ins…I decided it was time to start the journey. Rushing to get dressed I decided…today is the day…My first day in a long time…I will be the REAL ME…the one who enters a building with a gigantic smile on my face. I will lose weight. After all, I am SOMEBODY!
At 9:45, I entered the meeting area of my local Weight Watchers. I wanted to cover my head with a grocery bag. I prayed I did not recognize anyone at the meeting. Never did I establish eye contact. The leader approached me, introducing herself as Kathy.
“I’m new,” I whispered. She reached for my hand.
“Welcome to Weight Watchers.”
I thanked her, found a seat in the back row, holding my head down. Listening to the meeting, the tightness in my body eased. I left the meeting a bit confused. Just what could I eat?
At home, I read the literature, discovering all I needed to do was track my food intake, making certain to have 26 points daily. “Sounds easy enough,” I said.
Yes, I am still a member of Weight Watchers. March 11, 2015 I will celebrate four years as a member of Weight Watchers. Have I reached my goal?
Absolutely not. I haven’t even discussed my ‘goal weight’ with my leader — Yet! For now, I am somewhat in limbo. Bouncing back and forth. The holidays were a nightmare for me. I gained almost 10 pounds and was so furious with myself, I missed meetings due to the holidays and a cruise to the Bahamas.
When I did force myself to return to the meetings, I discovered a weight gain of two pounds – not the 10 I thought I gained. I missed the meeting last week due to a stomach virus. Tomorrow is my regular weigh-in day. I think I have gained; nevertheless, if I have — I will face the music and get back on track.
Losing weight is easy for some people. For me, it is a struggle. Nevertheless, I am determined. I have changed my eating habits considerably and I work out every week – usually five days weekly. My exercise routine includes walking on the treadmill, inclined at seven degrees, with a speed of 3.3 for 50 minutes. By the time I finish, I am dripping wet! My goal is to incline my NordicTrack to 10 degrees. You must realize, I have asthma and if I push myself, I end up gasping for breath. After the treadmill, I do aerobics. My exercise routine is a slow progression. I must say, the inches are melting away. I am able to wear clothes I never thought I could. My shoulders are slimming down, and a few weeks ago, I discovered I actually do have ribs and collar bones! Rejoice! Eureka! “Yes, I’ve got this!”
If you are curious about Weight Watchers, go to the website, https://welcome.weightwatchers.com/ and read all about it. I encourage others to consider joining at a meeting, not online – however, if you are the type of person who can work alone and do it all by yourself, then online might work for you. When I joined in 2011, I started to join online. Fortunately, I listened to that little voice in my head, deciding to go to the meeting — just to see what ‘confidential weigh-ins’ are all about. At our meetings, the confidential weigh in consists of two small scales sitting on the floor. NO BEIGE CURTAIN! As I approached I thought — that can’t be confidential…all the people have to do is move a bit closer to the line up and read what he or she weighs.
Surprise! I was incorrect! When I got on the scales, I expected the scales to moan or groan, so I looked down to read the number – but –the number was not visible.
I glanced at the receptionist writing on my card. “Where’s the weight?” I asked.
“We’re confidential now. Only the person behind the desk can see the number.”
I laughed. “No beige curtains?”
Silly me. She was familiar with the beige curtains!
After almost four years with Weight Watchers what have I learned? Simple. I’ve learned so much it might take an entire chapter to discover all that I have learned. I’ve made friends — loyal, supportive, kind friends, and I’ve learned that all of us who enter the Weight Watchers meeting have felt the same way. The first visit, I recall walking in, just wanting to be invisible. I did not want others to discover what I weighed, nor did I want them to laugh at me. No one did. I’ve discovered all of us at the meetings, even those at lifetime, have walked in those same shoes. The dreaded shoes of weight gain, and together, we join hands to encourage everyone. When we see someone returning to the meetings after a few absences, we smile at them. Many times I embrace them, telling them I have missed them…and many times, they will hang their heads in shame. I smile and say, “But you’re back…”
Together we can do this. So for now, smile and welcome to Weight Watchers! Together we are on an amazing journey!