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One DONE Birthday...OH YEAAAAH!

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

For the longest, Lisa and I had this kooky birthday tradition. On our birthdays (we were born eight days apart) the other would see who could call and wake up the birthday girl the earliest then begin to sing what we called "The Birthday Medley." We'd sing a few lines from the traditional birthday song, then mix in Stevie Wonder's birthday tribute to Dr. King, then we'd throw in a few Vegas lounge song-type versions, of course we had to rap it (beat boxing and scratching included) followed with a unique version that we heard one time when were having dinner at a Chinese Buffet and then we end it with an "OH YEAAAAH!" By the time we got to the end we would be so tickled with ourselves (her husband was so patient!).

We had so many fun memories, so this year I promised myself that I would not spend my birthday in tears like last year, but instead I would celebrate the gift of life and loved ones. And what better way to celebrate than get my cardio on and DANCE DANCE DANCE!!!

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So although my birthday was yesterday (5/26) the fun began on Friday night (5/22).

I talked Mama into going out with me and we had a blast!!! But I believe that I was having too much fun, around 2:30 am she was ready to go home, but yours truly was still on the dance floor. Thankfully, I ran into one of my old friends from High School and she agreed to take me home. The next thing I knew, Mama was in my SUV and peeling out of the parking lot!!! emoticon

Then on Saturday, my Homegirl LOVABLELULU joined me on Dance Fest Night Two. I was so pumped because I was able to fit back in my Nine West capris and I even had some room. We went to two different clubs and we danced the night away. Okay, Lucy danced maybe seven or eight songs...but I danced the night away (LOL). In two inch heels mind you...and stopped logging my cardio minutes once I crossed the four hour mark! But we too had a blast...although I believe I saw her peel out of the parking lot in her mini-van on two wheels! Hmmmm...

So Sunday, Mama and my Sister took me to dinner at a Japanese Steak House. I wanted to go there for THREE reasons. ONE I like watching how they prepare the food--such a show. TWO the food was great and I liked the little pineapple boat that's their version of a birthday cake and THREE, the Happy Birthday song that they sung reminded me of the one that Lisa and I heard the time we were at the buffet...which brought a smile to my face.

Then later that evening, although I told my sister it would be a waste of her time and money, she bought me a birthday cake. Which I didn't eat one single bite. My sister understood and was not offended...she already knew that I WAS ON THE WALL and could not come down. Not even for my birthday.

Now was I being extreme, would one bite or one slice have hurt me??? YES!!! Especially since I have no sense of control or discipline when it comes to birthday cake. Plus, that was no ordinary birthday cake it was covered in fluffy, sugary KRYPTONITE a/k/a icing.

While watching my family enjoy the cake, I drank my green tea and I was unaffected by the "cake fumes" . It was then that I realized just how DONE I was...and I kept saying to myself, "I'm about 15 lbs. away from my final goal...nothing tastes as good as reaching my own slim will feel... KRYPTONITE I'M DONE DONE DONE!!!"

Sunday night, we had a slumber party at Mama's house (I couldn't bribe anyone to go out dancing with me again...I wonder why???).

The next morning, while I was Sparking and updating my nutrition trackers my sister flipped through my manual nutrition tracker and started asking me questions about types of cardio she could do, meal planning and nutrition labels. She then promised to get back "On the WALL" with me. This was a prayer answered as I have been so concerned about her health. I quickly reminded myself of my promise...no tears on my birthday.

Then before I knew it Wednesday, May 26th arrived. I woke up bright and early, although I was not greeted with an Early Bird Call from Lisa singing "The Birthday Medley", I did wake up feeling an overwhelming sense of gratitude. Considering that the majority of my years was spent leading a life full of unhealthy habits at age 38 I felt better than I ever had before. Plus, thankfully and by the grace of God I have been able to maintain this positive lifestyle change AND motivate those who I love to lead a life full of healthy habits (two of my three goals from the Profile section of my Spark Page).

Later that morning my godkids made an attempt to call me before they went to school to tell me Happy Birthday (darn cell-phone signal issues), then Lisa's sister-in-law called me at work and sung to me. She said that the kids repeatedly reminded her the day before to call me and wish me a happy birthday. She promised that she would and that she would even sing. When she said that, Lisa's husband told her about our Birthday Medley tradition. She let me know that she wasn't trying to replace Lisa, but she just wanted me to know that she loved me and wanted me to have a happy birthday (she almost got me...thank goodness I had already promised myself not to cry).

During the day, I was FLOODED with Happy Birthday wishes in the form of Spark Mails, Spark Goodies, comments, text messages, IMs, emails phone calls , eCards and birthday cards from my family, classmates, church members, co-workers, the CC's, good friends from all over including Facebook and of course the infamous DONE girls!!!

Later in the afternoon, I was pleasantly surprised to receive what I call a REAL non-birthday cake!! My sister had an Edible Arrangement delivered to me at work and she even asked that they hold the chocolate!!!

Only one word described it...YUM!

Well, just when I thought my birthday couldn't get any better...it did. Yesterday evening, Lisa's husband brought the kids over to Mama's house and they both leaped out of the car and greeted me with Happy Birthday wishes, hugs and kisses.

What a blessing to be physically, spiritually and electronically surrounded by people who love me!


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LIZZIECA55 6/18/2009 3:43PM

    Happy Belated Birthday. Sounds like you had a ball.

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WOLFKITTY 5/30/2009 2:37PM

    I think I'm gonna cry for you! :D This is such a wonderful story. Good for you, lady!!

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MRSRUBLE 5/30/2009 5:47AM

    Happy Belated B-Day, you had an awesome birthday. I almost cried at the part when you mentioned how good you feel at 38, that is such a testimony to how far you have come. You deserve all of your birthday wishes and more.

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LAATREIVIDAA 5/29/2009 10:30PM

    Happy Birthday...... emoticon

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MONA38 5/29/2009 9:15PM

    Happy Belated Birthday emoticon emoticon

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SXYBUTTERFLY 5/29/2009 12:47PM

    HAPPY albeit deleyed BIRTHDAY! Sounds like you had a blast!

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BELLESTARR1 5/28/2009 10:47PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
Happy Birthday!!!!
I loved your blog.....I hope that I will have as much fun on my birthday next month as you did on yours!!!

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RAVEN227 5/28/2009 11:16AM

    Happy Birthday Deondra, from the sounds of it.....YOU HAD A BLAST!!!

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CHICANGE7 5/28/2009 11:06AM

    Awesome! Happy Bday!

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GIRLINMOTION 5/28/2009 9:54AM

    Happy birthday Deondra!!! Glad to hear it was awesome, you deserve it!

Way to go with staying on the wall and conquering the KRYPTONITE!!! Yes it is easier not to start even with just a taste of any KRYPTONITE if you have portion control issues (I know KRYPTONITE can destroy many strong people).

Hugs, Sonia

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TAM445 5/28/2009 9:15AM

    What an awesome birthday weekend you had! I am so happy for you.
Too bad we don't live around each other... I absolutely LOVE to dance!

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KROLES55 5/28/2009 9:10AM

    I am so glad that you had a wonderful weekend celebration and thank you for sharing...Your journey is truly amazing and inspirational..

Karen emoticon

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EMPOWEREDN09 5/28/2009 7:20AM

    What an amazing birthday and an amazing life! Party on.

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    Sounds like you had an Amazing Birthday DONE Girl!!!! How Great is That?!!! emoticonKeep on doing the DONE Dance!!! emoticon emoticon

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TNLONGHORN 5/28/2009 6:16AM

    What a great Birthday -- HAPPY HAPPY HAPPY BIRTHDAY!

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CLEWIS0607 5/28/2009 1:41AM


Joy overflowing...that is what I take from you each time you speak (or write in this case:). I feel your true sense of happiness and the blessings that you take from each piece of your experience. Thank you, once again, for touching me as you tell a seemingly simple story about your birthday celebration. In doing so, you have reminded me that life is about living. Take each day as a gift. Continue to pray for those you love, God hears those prayers. Remember those lost through celebration, not just through tears. You, my girl, are a treasure. A special gift and I feel truly blessed to get to have a piece of you each and every day:)

Okay, didn't mean to get so mushy but spoke from the heart and that must of been what it was feelin'!!


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SHORTYGETFIT 5/28/2009 12:29AM

    I knew that there was a special connection! Happy belated birthday. Funny thing, I celebrate the big 40 5/29.

Man, I am so proud of your accomplishments and so praying that I will be able to tell my story as you have this time next year.

--Looking forward to watching you rid yourself of that last 15 pounds! emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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KAYEREADER 5/27/2009 10:22PM

    Thanks for sharing the tale of your b-day weekend and the photos. It's a blessing to know you and you had a wonderfully blessed birthday!!!

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MONTANAGAL 5/27/2009 10:17PM

    I'm so glad you had such an awesome birthday! You are a blessing to all of us who know and love you!


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SIS Week 10 Challenge: I LIKE TO MOVE IT, MOVE IT!!!

Monday, May 25, 2009

This week's DONE Girls Spring into Summer Challenge is so timely. When it comes to cardio of course I like to MOVE IT MOVE IT...but I need to concentrate more on strength training. Saturday I kicked off the cardio with doing over four hours of dancing--this was part of my pre-birthday celebration (a blog and updated pictures will be forthcoming).

Listed below is my tracking thread for the challenge...gotta rack up those points for my homegirls, THE BAHAMA MAMAS!!!

Saturday 5/23: 240+ mins. of dancing
Cardio (5); Strength ( ); Outdoors ( )

Sunday 5/24: REST DAY
Cardio ( ); Strength ( ); Outdoors ( )

Monday 5/25: 45 mins. CR
Cardio (5); Strength ( ); Outdoors ( )

Tuesday 5/26: 30 mins. Elliptical; 6 mins. Yoga
Cardio (5); Strength ( ); Outdoors ( )

Wednesday 5/27: REST DAY
Cardio ( ); Strength ( ); Outdoors ( )

Thursday 5/28: 10 mins. Dancing
Cardio ( ); Strength ( ); Outdoors ( )

Friday 5/29: 35 mins. Treadmill; 20 mins. Dancing
Cardio (5 ); Strength ( ); Outdoors ( )


* Do at least 30 minutes of cardio exercise for 5 points per day.
* Do at least 30 minutes of strength training for 5 points per day.
* If at least 10 minutes of this exercise is done outdoors earn 5 points per day.

The maximum amount of points you can earn per day is 15 points. For the week (beginning Saturday), the maximum points you can earn is 105 points.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

GODZDESIGN95 5/26/2009 10:34AM

    Good for you I love it that you have not given up. Happy birthday emoticon

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Bahama Mamas Week 8 Challenge Tracker

Saturday, May 16, 2009

This is my outcome for this past week's challenge...I lost 1.8 pounds for the week!

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Monday: 5/11/09
Zone 1- Arms
(1 point) What exercise are you doing? CR, Full Workout
(1point) Share with the team Y/N Y = 1
Zone2- Thighs
(1point) What exercise are you doing? CR, Full Workout
(1point) Share with the team Y/N Y = 1
Total Monday Points: 4

Tuesday: 5/12/09 = REST DAY
Zone 1-
What exercise are you doing?
Share with the team Y/N
What exercise are you doing?
Share with the team Y/N
Total Tuesday Points: 0

Wednesday: 5/13/09
Zone 1- Thighs
What exercise are you doing? Treadmill, High Incline
Share with the team Y/N: N
Zone2- Arms
What exercise are you doing? Tae Bo Arms while on Elliptical
Share with the team Y/N: N
Total Wednesday Points: 2

Thursday: 5/14/09
Zone 1- Arms
What exercise are you doing? CR, Samba Fusion
Share with the team Y/N: N
Zone2- Thighs
What exercise are you doing? CR, Samba Fusion
Share with the team Y/N: N
Total Thursday Points: 2

Friday: 5/15/09
Zone 1- Thighs
What exercise are you doing? Line Dancing @ Jerry Green’s
Share with the team Y/N: N
What exercise are you doing?
Share with the team Y/N
Total Friday Points: 1

BONUS POINTS: 0 OR 10 (Award yourself 10 points if your total points for the week were 20)
Total Zone Challenge Points: 9

Total Cups Saturday and Sunday: 14 + 10 = 24

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

HEALTHYCHIX 5/17/2009 7:02PM

    You go girl ! Keep up the great work!

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IWANT2LOVEME4ME 5/17/2009 11:33AM


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GIRLINMOTION 5/16/2009 5:31PM

    Your doing awesome Deondra!!! Way to go!!!!

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GR8FULGAL 5/16/2009 3:23PM

    Wow this is awesome! Thank you for sharing. It is very inspiring to me. Keep going girl!

Lisa D.

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REJECTING Rejection!

Friday, May 08, 2009

"Jesus saith unto them, Did ye never read in the scriptures, The stone which the builders REJECTED, the same is become the head of the corner: this is the Lord's doing, and it is marvellous in our eyes..." Matthew 21:42 KJV

This past Sunday (5/3/09), my pastor preached a sermon entitled "The Cornerstone Conspiracy" which is part of series that he's doing called "In Awe of the Ordinary" this particular sermon focused on how to deal with rejection. When I read his focal scripture (Matthew 21:42), I was immediately moved being that the second part of this scripture is the scripture in my Spark signature line on the threads/team posts. It is also my testimony scripture of how God has been with me not only through my journey from the "Land of 407 Pounds" but through every one of life's experiences.

As Pastor preached he talked about how "rejection is being told that you are not needed, wanted or necessary." I began to remember specific situations in life when I had felt that I was not needed wanted or necessary because of my weight.

Like when I was in middle school I had a crush on this guy and thought I was head over heels in love. He had no issue with OUT and OUT rejecting me. Once he told me that I was cute, but just too fat and that he was being nice to me hoping to get close to my friend who was cute and skinny. I now see him almost every Sunday and my heart no longer beats for him but instead it breaks for him. He's gained so much weight and you can clearly see the misery on his face.

I also thought about one of my journalism professors from my sophomore year in college. I received a full journalism scholarship to the college that I attended and planned to graduate with my degree in Public Relations. One afternoon this professor approached me and said, "Deondra you need to think about changing your major. People in PR are the FACE of the company--you are too fat and no one will ever have you representing their company." Now that's what I called UNSOLICITED REJECTION. I cried so hard all the way back to my dorm room--I couldn't hardly see where I was walking. Of course after sharing the story with Lisa she cheered me up and had me laughing. She also reminded me of my capabilities and God-given gifts, so I decided not to change my major.

Much later, as a matter of fact it was my senior year-- I was further encouraged when I was approached by one of my communication professors. He indicated that he was impressed with my oratory skills and recommended that I change my major to Corporate and Organizational Communication. He said that PR would pigeonhole me and I should choose a major that would allow me to do whatever I wanted professionally. I followed his advice and changed my major even though it was my senior year. I'm so glad that I listened to him. The communication concepts that I learned from that program has helped me as I have been the FACE of various companies that I have worked for including in my current employer.

So by the time Rev. Cosby reached the final point of his sermon, the "solutions to rejection" the glue holding my fake eyelashes was losing the fight against my tears. He used the story of the rejected stone to remind us that "self-image sets the boundaries of individual accomplishment" and that we should REJECT REJECTION, because the stone that had been rejected by the builders in the end became the focal point of the structure.

This message was so timely....and let me tell you why. The events listed below are what motivated me to write this blog.

During the week that I initiated my "Back to Basics Plan", I was contacted by the editors of a national magazine. They were working on a cover story highlighting one of the main programs that I have used and still use that has been an important part of my weight loss progress and it was recommended that they talk to me regarding the success that I had experienced with the program. I was so thrilled and excited to have the opportunity to tell people...yes this program works and no matter what, don't give up even when you fall off the wagon. If I can do it you can too!!! I was only expecting to be quoted but later learned that there was a *possibility* that I would be pictured in the article.

My first interview just so happened to be the Monday after my first Back to Basics weigh-in. I was wearing some jeans that I had not been able to fit in for months . One of the strategies that I used in my Back to Basics plan helped me to lose "as much as a full jean size in a single week" and I had lost "16 pounds in a single week" (these are some very familiar generalized quotes from the article). www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_jo

Within days a professional photoshoot was scheduled at my home. This is the picture that Mama took of me before the photographer arrived.

After she took the picture I looked at it and began to doubt myself..."I don't look like the typical person that this particular magazine usually has pictured...how could my 'traditional build' (as Jill Scott positively refers to her size in HBO's 'The #1 Ladies' Detective Agency') be a motivation to someone???"

Then I looked at Mama and said to myself that the DEVIL IS A LIAR!!! There sat a woman who has lost almost 100 pounds by following the nutrition and fitness plan that I had designed for her. She was even dressed in her gym clothes and had her workout bag in tow, because she was planning to go workout at the conclusion of the shoot.

Well, let's fast forward to this past Wednesday (5/6/09). I had not received any feedback from any of the folks from the magazine that I had spoke with, so I decided to send an inquiry to the Cover Editor for an update. Well, bless her heart she profusely apologized for not notifying me sooner BUT the story was so big that "at the last minute [my] photo was cut due to there just not being enough room in the story." She congratulated me on my continued success then mentioned that she heard I was on Spark . She wanted to know what else I had focused on during my weight loss and that "perhaps" they could use me somewhere else along the line. Hmmm interesting, "perhaps they could use me..."???

Now they were able to use my quotes...well they generalized them...yet they ran out of room for anything else. WOW!

A part of the Deondra from middle school and my sophomore year of college wondered if they "ran out of room" because by mainstream standards I'm a big girl and technically considered obese and having someone like me pictured in a weight loss story might adversely affect sales. If that is the case...that is understandable and I am REJECTING REJECTION.

I am thankful and proud of how God has brought me from 407 lbs. and I know that he will see me to 217. So whether I can encourage someone through a magazine or not...I will continue to do what's listed as one of my goals on my Spark Page. And that is to motivate those who I love to lead a life full of healthy habits.

In another sermon that my Pastor has preached in the past, he talked about when people kick you--sometimes they don't realize it but they're kicking you forward. Often times you need those kicks to motivate you to either make changes or do something that you need to do. He said instead of the situation making you BITTER you have the choice to allow it to make you BETTER and that you should send them a thank you card for the kick.

Well, there are two groups of people that I need to send thank you cards to ASAP!!!

The first thank you card would go to the producers of a nationally syndicated show. Thanks to some of the interactions that I've had with them since last September I am still OBSESSED with the dress...with the exception of one change. I no longer want the dress that I've been talking about for months. Instead, I'm using it as an inspiration for a dress that I AM DESIGNING and am planning to wear at my goal weight on 10/3/09 to my 20-year class reunion.

I also need to send a thank you note to the editorial team of that magazine. I applaud the writers on such a well-written article on a program that has indeed helped me to "melt off 16 lbs. [in] a week!" It is my hope and prayer that their readers will try this program and experience extraordinary success as well.

But my thank you note would not be about complimenting them on writing such a good story. My thanks is for the the kick that I needed to start working on a vision that the Lord placed on my heart to do about a month ago and that some of my fellow Spark friends further confirmed without even realizing it. No one can tell my testimony or my story about this lifestyle change thing like I can.

When I first started losing weight my pastor encouraged me to constantly take pictures to chronicle the weight loss changes that were taking place. He went on to say that someday I would be able to use those pictures and my story to motivate someone else on this weight loss journey.

With that being said, I have a meeting tomorrow afternoon to discuss what I need to do start working on my first book. So what could have been a disappointing situation, God has turned it into good (Genesis 50:20).

This indeed is the Lord's doing and it is SOOOOOO marvellous in my eyes!!!!


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CHELLESDOINGR8 6/8/2010 5:04PM

    WOW!!! I always knew you were amazing and this solidifies that thought!!! Love ya, girl!!!


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1974SABBY 3/22/2010 4:12PM

    I was looking through your pictures and seen the picture that mentioned this blog. I just wanted to say that your blog is very inspirational. I also wanted to say that You look fantastic. emoticon

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CIBROOKS 8/10/2009 1:11AM

  I can't say anything but Amen...Your story brought tears too my eyes. Aint nothin like the joy that God gives u durin the times when people try to keep u down. I am thankful that I read this...it has been on my computer all day. I really needed this.

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LYONSVICTORY 7/21/2009 1:48PM

    You are a true inspiration! I had almost given up.... I had fell off my program and gained 20 pounds. The LORD led me to your page and your words have inspired me and I know not only that HE loves us be he is concerned about every detail in your lives.

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SABBI67 5/26/2009 4:10PM

    You will never know how much this blog spoke to me... I am so encouraged!!!! Thank you!

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GHW1968 5/25/2009 6:45PM

    Keep up the great work!

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KAT573 5/25/2009 5:30PM

GREAT blog! Great attitude! Great success!

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LY2009 5/21/2009 3:15AM

  I just happened upon your blog and must say this spoke volumes for some of the growing pains i'm going through. Thank you for sharing this.

I must say that you are gifted, blessed and highly-favored. The work is only truly beginning for what God's about to do in your life. Your preserverance through all those situations without falling apart (which is exactly what the devil would want us to do) has made you a stronger instrument, and you can rest assure you will count it all joy in the end.

God bless your book project and your weight loss journey. Remember the best is yet to come!

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JAY75REY 5/18/2009 12:32PM

    Loved the theme of "Rejecting Rejection" - you took your pastor's sermon and ran with it! How important it is to value oneself and reject the judgements of those who would put us down or dismiss us as "unworthy".
I'm going to read your blogs now. I am so impressed that you are willing to share your story with us in such depth! Thanks so much.

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JAYJAYZMA 5/16/2009 2:34PM


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PARALEE 5/14/2009 10:06PM

This was great, as ALWAYS! I can't wait to read your book, you always inspire me with your posts and blogs. Love the new photo, btw. You look beautiful! :)

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KROLES55 5/14/2009 9:31AM


I am so glad I came across your page.. You are definitely an inspiration..
Thank you for sharing...


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CIERAPOET 5/13/2009 5:33PM

    This is why you are a motivator on Spark and all over the World Deondra. I appreciate you writing this blog. I write long blogs and I know it is because I am a writer and a writer WRITES. You always motivate me. Your pictures are always beautiful. Your blessings are always marvelous. You encourage so many people that don't even tell you...I thank you for you!!!

I also wanted to say that you know who you are inside and that is all that matters. You are on you way to the top...although you are there in my opinion. Thanks for sharing so much wisdom and common areas. I am sure a lot of us have been in your shoes when we were coming up in this world. God bless you richly.
emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

Comment edited on: 5/14/2009 9:48:44 PM

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NEWBEIN 5/13/2009 11:11AM

    See... Mama D said it best! But there is a reason why u were not selected. U are meant to tell ur own story, in ur own way..so get to telling !! :-) AND guess what..THEN that nationally syndicated show will be BEGGING u to be a guest..LOLOLOL

The Creator does truly mean it ALL for our good!!!!

Comment edited on: 5/13/2009 11:13:16 AM

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LOVEABLELULU 5/13/2009 10:48AM


You are a beautiful, classy, intelligent, articulate, inspirational woman of God, and I'm so proud to be able to call you "friend". It's difficult for me to understand why a reputable magazine would pretend to be interested in a persons story and point of view, then blatantly use their words (for the cover and article) without acknowledging the source. Not only is this inconsiderate, but underhanded, unprofessional and down right deceitful. I was sure for once we were going to be able to see a "traditional built" African American woman represented in this magazine, but with sincere disappointment the reality is very apparent. Real women don't live in their world!

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GODZDESIGN95 5/12/2009 3:24PM

    That angers me although I know God is in control. If he for you who or what can go against you. They need open their eyes that every one is a size 1. Get real!!! You are awesome just they way are. Beauty comes from within. I have seen some of the most beauty women and then they open their mouths and all of the sudden they become not so beautifly any more. YOUGOGIRL! and never stop!!!

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DDROSE 5/12/2009 3:17PM

    I am very upset (pissed) with the magazine and will never buy one . It was not right to take up your time Deondra. Taking off from work going through all that preparation to make sure things were just right, not to mention the time and effort that went into the photo shoot, indoors, outdoors and all that non sense. I can't use all the words i would like to use on this blog. Believe me I have some choice ones. Your blog was very nice, the whole thing was very disappointimg. I have never seen anyone of color on the cover and sure I never will. Your mother

Comment edited on: 5/12/2009 3:18:35 PM

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EMITTINGLOVE 5/12/2009 10:49AM

    Thank you , thank you, and thank you! I so needed to read this today. It was right on time.

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EMPOWEREDN09 5/11/2009 2:51PM

    Thanks for sharing such an inspirational glance into your personal journey. Let Sparks be your national publication. It sounds like you already have a sound fan base. I can't wait to see the dress and you in it. Much love and wishes for continued success.


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ORGANIKBEAUTY 5/11/2009 1:50PM

    You are definitely an inspiration and I have to remember to reject rejection! So wonderful! I pray for happiness and continued blessings in your life on this journey! Thanks for posting

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NTANELSON 5/10/2009 12:47PM

    I enjoyed reading your post and wanted to congratulate you on your weight loss success. From reading your page it is obvious that you have an abundance of strength and faith which will get you to any goal that you have set for yourself. God is preparing you to continue doing great things by blessing others with your motivation and willingness to encourage others. You are an inspiration.

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KSTYLZ 5/9/2009 11:19PM

    I thank you for writing this article, it was so inspiring . I can so relate to everything you said. It has taken me until adulthood and much reading of the word to realize that satan used people in my past and present to reject me because he wanted me to give up and not fulfill my destiny. But thanks be to God who always causes me to triumph....I have dominion and power over the root of rejection! God bless you!

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NEECHEE144 5/9/2009 1:56PM

    So it is written shall it be done!!!

You are so inspiring and as you talk the talk and walk the walk you carry so many right along with you!!!

Sometimes on this journey all I can do is manage to come on and read your blog it is so refreshing to see you still on the journey and you help me in so many ways.

Thanks for staying and caring the way you do!!! God Bless!!

Comment edited on: 5/9/2009 1:57:15 PM

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KRISTA-GIRL 5/9/2009 1:27AM

    Clewis is right, you were MEANT to write this book. The Lord is using your education, past disappointments (which He allowed :-), your current successes (same :-) and is giving you a format where you can openly praise Him for your success. What a blessing!!! I'm so grateful to be a witness to this, and to be a part of your journey :-) WOOHOO!!! - Krista

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CLEWIS0607 5/8/2009 7:34PM

    Ah, my fabulous teammate and sister in Christ. I just am filled with joy to read your process of thinking and how you go right back to that sermon. While you experienced disappointment and even rejection at first, you didn't let it stew and turn into something ugly. Instead you made it into something good, something that serves an even bigger purpose. I think you were MADE to write this book and inspire an even bigger audience than you already do. I am constantly uplifted by whatever you have to write and I think that the world would be lucky to know you and all you have to offer. YOU GO GIRL!!!

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TNLONGHORN 5/8/2009 6:27PM

    You are absolutely amazing. You don't need a magazine to tell your story. You are a living billboard for everything that is right and good about the way to live one's life. I read your blogs all the time for inspiration. I can't wait to see the book.

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    Praise him.."He has done marvelous things"....

Girl every time I read one of you're blogs all I can do is think about is the goodness of Jesus.....Girl I am sitting hear trying not to cry!!! He is truly an awesome wonder!!!

D~~~Know that I rejoice with you because I am witness. He allowed me to meet you at this moment at this season and time to show me that all things are possible if you just believe. I see the many doors he is opening in your life and I know that my God is not a respector of persons and what he has done in your life he is capable of doing that and more in the lives of each and every one of us...Your testimony is a tribute to your faithfulness...The bible said he would know them by their FRUIT and your tree is RIPE Soror!!! I have nothing but love for you...God's favor is upon you.. Let the HATERs, Hate on...because FAVOR isn't fair....It's about obedience, sacrifice and a surrendered HEART.

Love you Girl

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NOEILAND 5/8/2009 4:19PM

    Girl, I don't know why Oprah came to my mind while reading your blog...with your fake eyelashes and such, LOL... you are such a lovely person and never, never doubt yourself again...continue to motivate and inspire others with your positive words and ways. Be Yourself. Love ya.

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SCORPIO180 5/8/2009 4:06PM

    It's so funny how you always seem to make lemonade from lemons each and every time. God has soooo many things in store for you, you are just playing catch up because all these blessings were written beforehand. Go head girl and claim it. I'm very proud of you!

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MZSASSY 5/8/2009 2:14PM


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STEPHAM1 5/8/2009 2:07PM

    Deondra - you are a BEAUTIFUL woman - rather a BEAUTIFUL soul. Wow - I can't wait to read your book! THough I may be doing it from a padded room - I am at work and I am laughing out loud and crying from this blog - they're going to send me off if I don't cut it out. How blessed you are to have a wonderful pastor that can serve as God's messenger for you in your times of need.

(I too have been blessed - makes me wiggle in my seat because sometimes the timing is due to my misbehavior - oops!)

Anyway - I love you more and more each day. Thank you Jesus for sending me a blessing named Deondra!

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RAVEN227 5/8/2009 1:15PM

    Deondra, Deondra!!! you have and will always be a blessing in my eyes. Thanks for sharing your blog and constantly motivating those of us who feel the same way as you.

Peace and Blessings
Veronica emoticon

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KAYEREADER 5/8/2009 1:11PM

    "For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction" - Newton

OK so I'm a scientist and no one else would probably see the applicability of this particular quote at this particular time, but it makes sense to me LOL!

What I love about your reaction to all that is and has gone on in your life is that you chose to determine the impact and direction of the "equal and opposite reaction". Too often we go through life letting actions that others have initiated bump us off course and into self-destructive thinking and behavior. Not you Twin!!! You have chosen for your reaction to be a life changing, positive reaction that will move you forward to the place where you choose and the place that God has ordained for you to be in life. That type of choice shows the depths of strength, fortitude and character that you possess Deondra. You are now, have always been and will continue to be an amazing, beautiful woman. Your story will impact many, in God's time and through His avenue of choice. Keep doing what you are doing, being who you are being and loving you with the depth of love God intended.

Love you twin! As always you inspire me...

Comment edited on: 5/8/2009 1:12:22 PM

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LANIYA1 5/8/2009 1:05PM

    Somebody hold my mule so I can cut one real fast!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Go HEAD!!!! HE said he'll make them your foot stool...and I see you're climbing higher! You let me know when your book is complete so I can go out and purchase it---better yet, get my personalized, autographed copy. I am so rejoicing with you here in lil old Tyler, TX. I hope you can feel my excitement(lol). Wow---how great is our God. Imagine the many lives you're going to impact with your story. I'm a little speechless. May God continue to bless you!


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HAPPYWRITER7 5/8/2009 12:58PM

    I was so blessed by this blog! As my name states - I am a writer, but often times, I find that I am "scared" to do it, and experiences that Ive had growing up with my weight make me a bit more timid, to reach out and grab the things I should, but I know God has blessed the work He has begun in me, and you are so right - sometimes, those kicks meant for discouragement turn out to be kicks of encouragement. Good luck on your book (Im working on a devotional myself), I know you will stand as an inspiration to so many people!

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GIRLINMOTION 5/8/2009 12:53PM


Reject rejection is the key to success and you have proven that just because people can be mean, there are others that will guide you in the right directions, by building on your positive strengths, and I know you have major amounts of that.

I look forward to seeing you in that "Deondra" designed dress 10/3/09 at your 20-year class reunion.

Hugs, Sonia

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FITWITHIN 5/8/2009 12:51PM

    emoticon on being featured in the magazine. That's absolutely wonderful. I'm lovin the title as well. Even thou I have lost a considerable amount of weight, I still doubt myself. Just today I ran into someone I haven't seen in awhile; she couldn't believe how much I have lost. Of course, I just said, Thank you. I'm still working at it and will continue until I reach my goal. On May 9, I'm going to set out to do a 10 mile walk. I've set this personal challenge for myself for the month of May and that's to complete 12 miles. I get up in the 5 o'clock hour when I'm not working the night shift and listen to gospel as I mentally prepare myself for walks in the mornings. I go out at 6 and walk for 60 minutes. Yesterday, I was able to do 4 miles in the time, but today I did 4.5 miles in 70 minutes. I start my walks and finish my walks listening to,"Jesus Walks", by Kayne West. emoticon

Comment edited on: 5/8/2009 12:55:52 PM

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    Deondra!!!!! That is a completely ingenious idea!!!!! WOW WOW WOW!!! I LOVE it...each time I read your blogs....I sit wide-eyed and glued to my screen....each paragraph is filled with heartfelt thoughts and encouraging words...I glean more information and learn more about you and your struggles...your successes and again I'm encouraged to donne on my workout gear to head out to the gym! I can't wait to hear how your book progresses...rest assured *I* will happily be one purchasing a copy and telling EVERYONE I know...*I* KNOW THIS WOMAN, SHE'S AMAZING!!!!

I'm dying to know what you are doing that is working so well for you!

Congrats on the article but am sad they didn't use it to their fullest capacity...your book my dear friend is going to be a HUGE success I just FEEL IT!!!

emoticon emoticon emoticon

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NEWCASTLE7B 5/8/2009 12:44PM

    okay, I won't be able to read your blog at work if you keep making jokes. I laughed out LOUD at the thought of your poor false eyelashes falling out!! but moving on. wow you sure do know how to bounce back, and then some! you've more than soared after everything you've been through, and that is what matters. I have no clue why the publishers made the decision they did, your before and after pictures still shock and awe me far more than any of the hundreds I've seen around here. It sounds like their loss has pushed you to much, much bigger things, that could touch just as many if not more people, so just think of it as one more thing you've move through, one more person who rejected you for foolish reasons, one more thing you've already beat!

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Thursday, May 07, 2009

It's been one year and I still can't believe Lisa is gone. Although I miss her terribly, I find comfort in knowing that she's in Heaven.

Lisa loved scrapbooking and became even more fond of it once she was diagnosed with breast cancer. She would often say that she wanted to use every moment that she had to create memories...and so she did...

As a tribute to her memory, I am sharing an excerpt from my first scrapbook that she gave me.

Lisa and I met during freshmen orientation at WKU March 1989 and grew to become the "bestest friends in the whole wide world." She once gave me a little magnet either for my birthday or Christmas that says, "You'll always be my best friend--you know too much!". How true :) I am so thankful that God allowed our paths to cross she is a true friend.

If I could take your troubles
I would toss them into the sea,
but all these things I'm finding
are impossible for me.
I cannot build a mountain
Or catch a rainbow fair,
But let me be what I know best,
A friend that is ALWAYS there.

Poem by Khalil Gibran

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SHAVONPR 5/7/2009 9:47PM

    I can't believe it's been a year! I know it's hard but keep praying and be there for her kids as much as you can. It is truly a blessing to meet friends such as Lisa in this world.

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JANEYJAYE 5/7/2009 1:13PM

    That's so sweet. I can't believe it's been a year. And look how strong your friendship remains.
xo hugs xo

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DESTINY2BFIT 5/7/2009 10:25AM

    Continue to cherish those memories...God places some special people in our lives just for a season...A lot of times we can't comprehend why they have to go...But remember she will ALWAYS be apart of you!! I'm sure in a very special way, she has contributed to who you are today!! emoticon emoticon

Ecclesiastes 3:1
To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven

Sending you big, big hugs from your Sister in Christ,

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GIRLINMOTION 5/7/2009 9:45AM


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KAYEREADER 5/7/2009 9:15AM

    You two ladies were blessed to have each other!!!

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CAROLKCP 5/7/2009 9:13AM

    emoticon I can tell she was an amazing friend.
Lovely poem... emoticon

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