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Gaining weight & Eating out of control! :(

Monday, January 16, 2012


I don't even know where to start. But perhaps the most important first. I'm pregnant.

It's not planned and if I'd planned more children, I obviously wouldn't have had surgery last summer to remove my excess skin after the 130lbs weight loss. But I'm pregnant. And I'm over the shock and both me, my husband and our two children (who are 4 and 5) are excited about the new addition to our family.

But my feelings are not as straight forward as plus or minus. They are, to say the least, ambivalent. The baby part of it is fine. We're financially sound, we have a big house, we have plenty of love to give - so, the practicalities are all in place and no cause for concern.

But I am.

I don't like being pregnant. I didn't like it with the first two. In fact, I hated it. So, it was not a hard decision not to have more. Not because I didn't want more children, which is also why we are now approved foster carers - but because I suffer with pregnancy. I don't enjoy what it does to my body - the hormones, the aches, the pains, the skin, the hair - all of it's just horrible. And this is more true this time than ever before.

I am upset. I am in tears. I am hating the loss of control, the weight gain, the food cravings that go beyond anything I've ever experienced. Probably, because I never tried to control them in my previous pregnancies.

First time I became pregnant (July 2005), I weighed 242 lbs, and gained just over 15.5 lbs.

Second time (April 2007), I weighed 267 lbs and gained 30lb.

This time, I entered pregnancy weighing 142 lbs. I was pretty much at my ideal weight and feeling amazing. But in just 12 weeks I've already gained 11 lbs.


I look about 7 months pregnant.

I'm still weighing and tracking all my foods. Of course. I have done that every day for 3 years now, and I've no intention of stopping. And although I'm unable - and I do mean unable - to keep to the 1300 calorie average I've been keeping the last year and a half, I am still averaging no more than 1600 calories. Do +300 calories really mean a crazy rapid gain like that?

Evidently so!

But despite the increase, I'm really, really struggling. I want to eat, I think about food non-stop and feel like I'm back to square one! I recall with horrow those first days in January 2009, when I'd walk around in the kitchen like a hungry she-lion on the prowl for prey. Back then, I made a time plan and a meal plan, so I knew exactly when I was allowed to eat and what.

But it's not working now. Sometimes, I am so hungry and craving salt and carbs so much I cry!

It's pathetic and I'm hating it so much! And then of course I get cross with myself for hating the pregnancy, because I know I'm blessed, fortunate, lucky and all the rest that I can get pregnant and have healthy babies and have no trouble conceiving (though apparently problems avoiding it!). But I am not ungrateful. I really am not. I'm just a woman struggling.

I have my first midwife appointment on the 31st. But I don't even want to talk to her about my diet and my concerns. Not that I don't respect the opinions and advice of health professionals, but I seriously doubt she knows as much as someone, who've been Spark'ing for 3 years solidly. You know what I mean, don't you? 'Cos I really don't mean to sound arrogant.

I know how to eat a healthy and balanced diet - and I do! I know how to exercise - and I do! And in theory, I know how to control cravings, portions etc. But I'm failing. And I can't really see how any off the shelf advice the midwife can offer can alter this.

I tried communicating my problems to my GP, when I went for my booking in appointment, and he just smiled overbearingly.

All the special dietician and exercise offers our local health authority offer are for overweight or obese pregnant ladies only. I'm already experiencing how different pregnancy is when you're normal weight. Only half the scans, half the tests, half the talks and checks with the midwife and GP. And that's okay. Resources are scarce and need to be directed. But I never felt like I needed the support and advice more than I do now.

Where do women, who've lost 130 lbs go? Where do women, who are terrified that pregnancy will spell the end to their efforts go?

I am so, so sad.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DEEGIRL50 1/16/2012 8:00PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

Blessings! I'm sorry you are struggling and wish I had some advice. I've never been pregnant (adopted our son) and I've never lost 130 pounds.

Take care sweetie. This too shall pass. Keep posting and your Sparkers will continue to listen.

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SAPHRAEL 1/16/2012 8:29AM

    Sorry you're struggling. Keep pressing the GP about your concerns. The experts in charge of your care need to understand you need special care, even though you aren't overweight anymore. I saw the pics of you and the kids. You're amazing! Plus, you are armed with the knowledge of how fitness and nutrition works now. Keep seeking help and support to work through the emotional side of being pregnant again.


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OOLALA53 1/16/2012 8:06AM

    If you did not NEED the extra 300 calories a day, the would add up to a 7 lb. gain. However, it's hard to imagine you don't need that much, though a dietician with expertise in pregnancy might know different. Is it too early to be retaining water?

I'm so sorry you're having to face the eating difficulties after all you've accomplished. Maybe, like some have morning sickness early, these urges will be temporary. In the meantime, do your best to stick to a sane eating plan, and know we're rooting for you.

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BEYOURBEST1 1/16/2012 7:21AM

    I also had a very hard time with my eating habits when I was pregnant. I had very stressful jobs and training during my pregnancies, which made the eating part a lot worse. I did love feeling that I always had company, and I loved the kicks which were almost a battle with my second one...
Maybe you can find a few appointments with a dietician but check that she will be able to help you with nutrition and weight during pregnancy. Otherwise it would be a waste of money and energy. Also, you don't need to get any condescending advice, that does not help.
As you know, you need to get plenty of rest, or at least as much as possible. You have your two little ones and they also require a lot of your energy.
You have learned a lot, and that will help you through this new challenge as far as weight goes. Do not compare your weight gain to that from your previous pregnancies. You were at an unhealthy weight and the body reacts differently. Find what your healthy weight gain range is, but be extra patient. You know that there will be a gain, but you have learned a lot about weight management and that will help you greatly.
Try to enjoy your pregnancy as it is a blessing.
I am here for you if you need support.
Take good care of yourself.

Comment edited on: 1/16/2012 7:22:39 AM

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GHOSTFLAMES 1/16/2012 5:17AM


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STALEYK 1/16/2012 5:13AM

    So sorry to hear of your struggles. Know that people here do care and although we haven't walked in your shoes...we can understand some of the pain you are going through and the frustrations. Don't give up...we can walk this journey together.... emoticon

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Before & After Surgery Photos

Sunday, July 03, 2011

Sometimes, a photo speaks louder than a million words:

I'm still having the post-operation staph infection wound redressed every two days and I'm still quite emotional when I think about how ill I became with septicemia after surgery, but I'm also finally at the stage where I feel it was worth it. All of it.

125 lbs gone for good and likewise finally the unsightly saggy belly.


I'm never gonna have a swimsuit edition body, and there's still room for improvement, but I'm glad - very glad - I had it done.

And I'm forever grateful to SparkPeople for helping me get to the stage where abdominoplasty was even possible! Thank you!!


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MELLISOND 2/20/2012 10:31PM

    I've lost 90 pounds and have another 70 to go. I know I will need plastic surgery. Your sharing is so helpful to me as I look to the future. Thank you!!

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BOOKWORM27S 10/31/2011 3:13PM

    OMG.... my belly looks exactly like that! I lost 178 lbs. and my entire body looks like a melted candle! Congrats, I have a million questions for you. I have long considered having surgery to remove all the excess skin.

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QUADCMOM 7/10/2011 7:35PM

    You look great. Congratulations for your weight loss !!!

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MARTHAWILL 7/10/2011 7:29PM

    YOu look fantastic. A huge congratulations on your success.

emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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K_FERGUS 7/10/2011 11:16AM

    Fantastic pictures! I had a TT and arm lift on 5/9 and am so impressed with your pictures. I *should* have had the vertical cut and therefor still have quite a bit on excess skin at the top of my stomach. The hanging skin is gone, but I don't look anywhere near as tight as you do. Congrats on your success!!!

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RISSASPIECES 7/10/2011 9:09AM

    I am sending you my healing energy! You really did deserve to see the final results after such a huge is truly the cherry on top! I had a similar operation done 14 months ago and have been just amazed with the results since the very first drug addled day! :-) I still have some numb spots, especially around my navel and some angry red scars...but who cares! LOL

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KO1215 7/5/2011 10:20PM

    Thanks for sharing! You are so brave! I bet that is a great feeling. I hope you are feeling better. Take care!



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MONAMOM 7/5/2011 1:57PM

    WOW!! That is amazing. Sorry you had to deal with the infection, but you really do look GREAT! At 64, I think I will just "camo" my excess but I am so happy that you did this for YOU!! Congratulations!! emoticon

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UP2ME_CC 7/5/2011 12:23PM

    emoticon on your transformation! Simply remarkable.

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JULINC 7/3/2011 9:18PM


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HCOOK282 7/3/2011 9:52AM

    Awwww Joanie you look amazing hon!!!! Well done, you are inspirational. xxxxx

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OOLALA53 7/3/2011 9:48AM

    You are the kind of person this surgery was meant for. I had it done and went on to lose more weight. Still not at goal but I feel my body at least shows the work I have done. emoticon

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    well done for losing all that weight! You are looking fab now and an inspiration to many of us out there that is still on the weight loss journey! Keep up the good work!

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TACONES 7/3/2011 7:42AM

    You look great. emoticon

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BEYOURBEST1 7/3/2011 7:31AM

    You look fabulous! Congratulations on a fantastic job!
I hope you finish healing and you recover promptly.
Enjoy your well earned success and your new body.

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RIDLEYRIDER 7/3/2011 6:40AM

  Very impressive! I do hope the worst of it is over and you are on the way to healthy recovery! emoticon

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DEEGIRL50 7/3/2011 6:14AM

    You rock!! Amazing change.

I'm sorry you were so ill afterwards. The surgery was a great reward for having transformed your body and your life style.
emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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FITWITHIN 7/3/2011 6:13AM

    emoticonon the weight lost and surgery. I hope the infection will clear soon for you. emoticonon your hard work.

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Tomorrow: The Operation.

Sunday, June 05, 2011

So, tomorrow I go. To have the excess skin and a considerable amount of flab removed from my belly. Abdominoplasty, I think, is the correct term.

And although this is what I want and what I have fought so hard and so long to get, I am terrified. I'm terrified of the operation and I'm terrified of the afterwards.

But I suppose that's only normal. Major surgery should be cause for concern.

In brighter news, I don't know what to bring to wear! At least the weather's nice, so I needen't really worry about trousers, I guess. A light summer dress will probably be most comfortable post operation. But other than the comfort issue, I've no idea what size trousers will fit after the operation. I'm inbetween size 10 and 12 UK now (that's 38/40 Europe and 6/8 US), and I haven't bought any new trousers since I was a 12/14, because I knew I was having the operation. I'm hoping a size 10 will be perfect after the op.

But what to wear *under*??? Probably going to be lovely hospital long johns for the first few weeks anyways, so perhaps I'm worrying for nothing.

Anyways... I'm wittering. That's nerves. I witter when I'm nervous.

My mum's driving me to the hospital tomorrow. Husband is at home with the children. He'll be coming up when I'm having the operation on Tuesday. My best friend lives in the city where I'm having the operation, so she'll look after me, too.

Total loss to date: 124.6 lbs - 56.5 kilo - 8st 12.6lb

I'll let you know how much they take off me!

Wish me luck, keep 'em crossed and... you know... think of me!


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KO1215 6/5/2011 9:25PM

    Good luck Joanie! You are soooo brave! You will be great and you will look fantastic! Of course you already do! SO PROUD OF YOU! I'll be thinking of you! emoticon

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CAROLJEAN64 6/5/2011 6:04PM

    Been there, done that. It is major surgery, yes, but you know it's not because you are sick!!! Follow all the directions the doctor and nurses give you. You won't notice a difference right away because your body takes a while to recover.

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DEEGIRL50 6/5/2011 1:28PM

    emoticon emoticon
This will make your transformation complete! You deserve this so much.
I'm sending calming vibes your way and prayer that all goes smoothly.
emoticon emoticon emoticon

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BEYOURBEST1 6/5/2011 1:26PM

    You'll do great. Just take with you some comfortable and loose clothing.
You will figure out what size pants you will need after you recover from the procedure.
Just follow your plan and don't think about it too much, so that you don't get more nervous.
Congratulations on your fantastic weight loss!
All the best with the surgery, and remember that you will need time to recover, but you will feel better every day.
Many hugs and blessings to you.

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Exercise: Motivation Found!

Monday, January 17, 2011

I've been putting it off, and putting it off, and putting it off. Didn't quite know how or where to even start! But it had to start. I have to get fit. For a whole bunch of good and very valid and motivational reasons that'll I'll write about some other time. Point is I had to get started.

And tonight, it happened!

I was procrastinating yet again in fron of the computer willing myself to come up with JUST the way to get me out there for nothing more than a 7 minutes slow jog around the block. Oh, the mental bashing I was doing for NOT doing it. I mean, 7 minutes, for chrissake! How hard can it be???? Just do it, for petessake and so on and so forth!

Then it suddenly hit me: My kids! I mean, they were a massive part of my motivation, and now I've done all this hard work for them, isn't it time they put a little effort into the project as well???

So, I asked my daughter if she'd like to come for a run with mummy. She did. She was very keen, in fact. So, we found our running shoes, our track-suits and off we went. And I can tell you right here and right now that had it not been for her running right there in front of me, there's no way I would've done the whole round without stopping. I paced myself so well and even when it hurt, I kept going! No way was I going to ask her to stop so I could walk for a bit 'cos my legs were hurting and I was getting out of breath whilst she was running happily along telling me the colours of all the house we were passing. No way I could lose face like that!

Who knew that what I needed was my 4-year-old daughter as a running partner!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

BEYOURBEST1 1/17/2011 10:36PM

    Kids are the best! Enjoy your daughter and keep up the good work.

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For all the sexy women out there.

Wednesday, January 05, 2011

I hope everyone has had a lovely and tasty Christmas and New Year!

I spoke to a friend recently who is just starting her weight loss journey and is terrified of going on the scales. I said to her that she must never allow the scales to control her mood and her opinion of herself, just like food and eating should not be a response to how she feel about herself either.

When I was saying it, I suddenly remembered something, which I had long forgotten - how I didn't own scales that could actually weigh me back when I started this journey. Seriously. My scales could not weigh me! I did not know how much I weighed! Not until I reached 120 kilo, that is. 120 is 18st 12.6lb or 265 lbs. I started my Spark journey two years ago but I know that when I had Arthur 3 years ago, I was around 21 stone or 295 lbs.

Two years down the line and some 120lbs lighter, I feel free. I feel better than I ever did and I feel utterly deserving of feeling like this. I guess that's the most important point I can ever make (which is why I keep making it!) - that feeling good starts with feeling good about yourself no matter how you look or what size you are!

Let me share with you the wise-wise words of a kindred spirit:

"I believe that all women would do well to go inside the minds of men and see how beautiful we really are, no matter how we look."

Through the eyes of men we are all desirable and worthy of love! If only we used their mirror instead of ours! And tell me just what makes our own mirror more "true" than theirs? Yes, they may be thinking with a certain body part, but tell me then which body part we're thinking with that make us so ugly and unlovable in our own eyes?

Out with the self loathing and self-deprecation and in with the sexy and desirable woman! She's already there, dormant, undiscovered - sleeping beauty awaiting true love's first kiss - from YOU!

Wishing every one of you sexy women a wonderful, healthy and fulfilled 2011!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

BEYOURBEST1 1/5/2011 9:26PM

    Thanks for the beautiful blog. You are right, things start improving when we learn to love ourselves. We need to be our own best friends.
Have a happy 2011!

Comment edited on: 1/5/2011 9:32:45 PM

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GIANT-STEPS 1/5/2011 3:39PM

  I don't know how much I weighed at my heaviest either. My scales didn't go up that high. I did weigh at my doctor's office but I already lost some weight by then.

Weight is just a number and it certainly doesn't give us the whole picture. Our self-worth shouldn't depend on how we look and it certainly should't depend on a number.

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