When I turned 21, it was a sad day for my weight. I was one of the 2349238539485 females who I'm sure that's happened to. Not right away though. At first, I drank the girly drinks. Liquor only. No beer, whatsoever. Hubby on the other hand was a different story. So somehow our "date-nights" changed into us sitting on the tailgate of his truck drinking beer, eating pork rines, and slim jims. I know...quite the romantic, wasn't he? Here's me and him (kissing again...sorry) on my 21st birthday, and then some of various "drinking" nights.
So here begins the start of some serious weight gain. Since I could drink in public now (and had moved into an apartment with my best friend), Darren and I would ALWAYS go somewhere and "party" in the evenings. Usually wherever had $1 draft beer. It's what all of our friends did and was a good time. Unfortunately with those $1 beers came fried food. Fried pickles, chicken tenders, french fries, and lots of ranch were among my favorites. Yes, we live in the south if you haven't figured that one out by now. And usually we would even go to "Cook-out" after whatever bar we were hanging out in that night. *Cook-out is a fast food place basically serving what you would expect by the name. Burgers, hotdogs, onion rings, corndogs, milkshakes...all that stuff* Embarrassing confession- Two of our favorite things to do were go to "Cook-out" and watch Food Network (on my bed) as we devoured our fried goodness and/or go to the grocery store and get a "Junkfood feast"and do the same. (Food Network/bed) So as you could expect, I probably gained 15-20 lbs in a couple years of doing this.
All of this time I was working at a quaint little restaurant called Hooters. I had worked there for oh I don't know 2-3 years and up until this point weight was never an issue. I even did many swimsuit contests and did fairly well in them. (They were all rigged anyways!) The reason I'm even mentioned working at Hooters to you all is because this is where I really started to realize I was becoming a fatty. Of course, I noticed when I started to have to wear a "small" tank top instead of "extra-small", but the kicker was when I was put on the "30-day plan." (VERY different than the 30 day Shred!) If I didn't lose weight (no given amount), I would essentially be fired when my 30 days were up. It was up to me how and what I was gunna do to lose the weight. I know I know, but it sounds worse than it was. I signed a contract (basically) when I was hired to keep the appearance I was hired with. It still sucked and I'd never allow my daughter to work there now, but that's a whole different story. *Short version- Even though most of the girls who work at Hooters aren't whores, that stereotype will remain forever (I heard all you people reading mumble "SLUT!" when I mentioned Hooters) and I'd rather her just not have to deal with that....and all of the other stupid crap I know I dealt with there.* ANYWAY, I did try to lose weight...ate right, worked out, all of the good stuff. In the end, I ended up getting another waitressing job at a local Tavern and finally quitting Hooters altogether. At this point, I remember buying shorts for my new job and buying size 9's. Up until now I had been in a size 3. Here's a way old Hooters picture for laughs..
Yes I look huge. But, I was all (mostly) belly. And my sweet Mackenna weighed 9 lbs 3 oz, so she had to have some room in there, dangit!
This next part really has nothing to do with weight loss (besides the 9 lbs 3 oz. that were just cut out of me.), It's just too important in my life not to share. And sweet too....y'all are gunna just love it. When Mackenna was born, Darren made a onesie for her. When I was trying to decide on what "first outfit" we should put on her..Darren said well.."What about this?" and it just so happens on that onesie were the words "Will you marry my daddy?" Of course I said yes..(after I figured out what was going on...I was still loopy from being asleep in surgery.)
She was born July 10th and the next May, in 2011, Darren and I were married. During the time in between, I pretty much sat on my butt at home with a newborn. I looked forward to her nap times, because that was when I'd again watch Food Network and stuff my face with whatever junk I had in my house. My overall self confidence suffered BIG TIME. There were days I didn't even try to look somewhat presentable. I'd be lying if I said there were no days I didn't at least brush my hair. Not to mention, since I wasn't pregnant my old love, BEER showed up again in my life. My "OMG!" moment happened when I was bridal gown shopping. Pretty much every dress I tried on made me look HUGE and after only one store and 5 or 6 dresses I simply picked the one I looked the least fat in. Janurary of 2011, I began trying to lose weight. I went to a doctor and was put on a low carb diet. Well..I lost 14 lbs in 2 weeks and then gained about 10 back, to make a long story short. On my wedding day, I actually cried because of how ugly I thought I looked. It was a combination of my weight, my hair, everything. Here's a few pictures..
After we were married I pretty much went a whole year eating whatever I wanted and not caring. I was too happy to worry about it. I married my best friend and had the most beautiful baby I could ask for. I realized I HAD to again worry with my weight when I reached 175 lbs. That's what I weighed when I GAVE BIRTH, y'all! And this time, a 9 lb baby couldn't be used as an excuse. Here's some family pictures we had taken which I never (just like my wedding pictures) even really printed because of how huge I think/thought I looked!
In January of 2012, I joined Weight Watchers. I would recommend Weight Watchers to anyone wanting to lose serious weight and not knowing which way to go about it. I lost 25ish pounds in the few months I went. I had a few months where I didn't try to lose, but didn't gain either. I finally found my motivation again in "Mama Laughlin's" blog.Now I'm doing it on my own. With the help of "My Fitness Pal", counting calories, working out, and basically changing everything my family and I eat, I plan to be 130 lbs before the end of the year. I'm currently a little less (Hopefully) than 150 pounds. I'm going to weigh Wednesday. My confidence has returned and that in itself has made my life (and my family's life) better. I actually want to DO things now! I even take the occasional self-absorbed self-portrait again. But in my eyes, I deserve the right to do so! ;) Here's my most current photos. Still a ways to go but darn PROUD of how far I've come so far! Whoo hoo!!