My name's Natalie, I'm 38. I lost all my weight once, was a size ten, had a BMI of 23. I now have a BMI of 32. The first time I lost it all I started with a BMI of 38, so all is not lost. This is round two, week two.
My mom was always on a diet, she wasn't big, but had been a pretty polly leg model before I came along and 'ruined her figure', honestly, her words, like it was my idea to be a nine pound baby popping out of a 8 stone stocking model. I went to boarding school at eleven. Homesickness coupled with puberty led to some impressive tuck shop runs and I had puppy fat until I was about 16. When I met my husband I was the cool indie kid, the English girl living in a coastal town in America, who only visited on school holidays. I went to an all boys boarding school for A levels, as one of the first intake of girls. I ran cross country so I could smoke far way from the school grounds. Needless to say I was slim.
I got married at the age of 18 (!) and moved to America, I was a student nurse and worked part time as a waitress, I got to eat for free: I capitalised on this. My husband was an unpaid intern, we had no money at all, I effectively ate out three meals a day for two years. We didn't have health insurance and contraception wasn't free, so I participated in a research study that not only GAVE me the pill for nothing, it paid me for various extras... what could go wrong?
Maisie was born 7 months later. She was very poorly, her story's for a different forum. I was a kid, my family were in the UK, my husband's family were local but the least supportive people in the world. By this point my husband had a very well paying job and was doing really well at it, he visited Maisie every single day, but his focus was on his career, to make sure we would be provided for, I can not fault his reasoning, but I felt abandoned. I once again turned to food. I was a size 12 when Maisie was born, I had been violently ill in the first trimester, and actually weighed less the day she was born than the day I conceived. But soon my routine revolved around food... I would park in the Starbucks car park as it was free, and walk to the children's hospital with my latte and muffin in hand, I would take every opportunity to eat, as it meant a break from sitting by her incubator and feeling useless. I used food as comfort, and also an excuse to leave the intensive care unit. Maisie died when she was 15 months old. Inevitably the cracks in the marriage were there. We did everything we could to save the marriage, two more daughters, we moved back to England. I weighed 235lbs and was a size 22. I went back and finished my nursing degree, and in my final year I went to lighter life. I loved it. I graduated with a first class honours degree, and wearing a size ten dress. My husband didn't come. I went to work on a neonatal intensive care unit. I loved it. I took up running. i ran two half marathons and four 10ks. i was finally getting a life of my own but it was the final straw. My marriage ended last year, while I was training for the London marathon.
It's not all doom and gloom. I am in love, proper grown-up, I don't just fancy you because you're older than me and drive a sports car and have long hair love, like I had when I was 16. But 'anything's possible, we are a great team' love. Things are moving quickly, but they need to, we're on the wrong side of 35 and want to have a baby. We are very happy, but unfortunately have been celebrating our happiness every single day since September (case in point: I hooked up the DVD player successfully so we went on a five hour all you can eat tapas binge at our local place and drank four bottles of red wine... we didn't even watch a DVD for six weeks).
So that's me in a nutshell. I love meal replacements. I get that moderation is the key to everything but I am not moderate. If I'm being good I am perfect. If I'm being bad, that's half a stone on in the blink of an eye. So, I'm back on the VLCD journey. It works for me. I love it. I love not even being allowed a teeny bite of something, because I suffer very badly from the 'I might as well...' syndrome.
The boyf is a gym bunny who doesn't routinely eat carbs. He managed to only gain half a stone since he moved in, but is a lot more moderate than me, if he knew we were having a special meal and some wine and chocolate in the evening he would have a salad for lunch, I'd write the whole day off and have a mcmuffin for breakfast, fish finger sandwiches and crisps for lunch, and countless snacks, after all, what's the point of eating healthy all day if you're just going to blow it in the evening?! So refeeding sounds like a doddle, I look forward to just eating what the boyfriend eats. My daughters are very tiny and athletic (older daughter rows, younger daughter is a gymnast) so they can eat what they like.
I am excited to be starting again, in every way. I can't wait to get into my old dresses, so many with the tags still on! I have a boyfriend who adores me and loves to show me off as I am, I can't wait to make him even prouder.
I'm so excited, did I mention that?!