July 18th, 2006 by Anna

Jul. 7, 2000Jul 7, 2000This is me in July, 2000. I wanted to cry when these photos got developed. I tried to blame it on the clothes, on the angle, on the fact that I was squished between my sisters on a tiny bench. Well, the clothes were huge because I was huge. I was squished because I was huge. The photo to the right was taken the same day. I think this is about the time I really had to face that I was fat. I would say I was fat, but really I thought I was just kind of heavy. Since high school graduation, I gained about 5 pounds a year. Five pounds isn’t that much, but it’s been twelve years since I graduated. The weight was so gradual, it was hard for me to really realize it. But once I saw the fat girl in the mirror, she never wanted to go away.

It took a few months before I finally did something about the weight I’d gained. I wish I’d taken photos then, too. I’m pretty sure I’d put on about five or ten more pounds since these summer shots.

Dec. 2000I chose to join Weight Watchers over other weight loss programs for a few reasons. First, my sister had been so successful using WW a few years before. She gained her weight back, but it wasn’t because of WW. Also, I had tried other diets (none with meetings) but I found that I didn’t like feeling deprived. I wanted a program that I could learn how to eat correctly – learn portion control and how to balance proteins, fats, carbs. But, I wanted to be able to have the occasional ice cream sandwich and not feel like I was ‘cheating’ on my diet. I wanted a lifestyle change! So I joined WW on November 16, 2000! I didn’t take ‘before’ photos until December 28th. By that time, I’d lost over 20 pounds. My husband took these photos then – I really didn’t want to take them. I was still so embarrassed by my weight. I should have worn my shirt tucked in – even though I hadn’t done that in years. But really this is a good example, because this is how I always looked. I dressed baggy to try to hide my fat. It didn’t work so well. I could try to pretend that in the second photo the shirt is just billowing out, but no… my tummy stuck out further than my bust, which was already straining in a 42″ bra.

Feb. 2001Feb. 2001But I stuck with the new lifestyle. It was giving me some positive results. These next photos were taken February 8, 2001 after a loss of over 32 pounds. You can see the difference more in my “nekkid” photos where I’m just in bra and panties but I’m not sharing those – that’s where I draw the line! Anyway, these photos were very helpful because I hadn’t noticed any loss when I looked in the mirror. But the photos showed my double chin disappearing, my tummy backing up under my bust… While I couldn’t see the difference in the mirror, I couldn’t deny it in the photos. And this time, I was happy to take photos. Look! I even tucked in!

Apr. 2001Apr. 2001These photos were taken in April, 2001 after about 50 pounds lost. The differences I could see were again the neck and double chin (or now the lack thereof). And my fingers! Look at the difference in my hands! I didn’t know hands could be fat! I’m pretty sure these are size 10 jeans in these photos – maybe size 8. Previously it was probably 12 or 14, and then 14 or 16 in the first set. I was again quite happy to take the photos. And again, until I took the photos, I couldn’t see the difference in the mirror. Dang it – I need a new mirror!!

June 2001Jun 2001Well, the next two months I dropped sizes again. Most 8’s are baggy on me just a little and I fit into a few size 6’s! It’s official! I’m smaller than when I graduated high school (12 years ago!). Yay!! I bought this tank dress at Walmart. It’s a size SMALL and listed as size 4/6! I’ve lost two cups sizes in my bra which means I fit into dresses and blouses much better now, and I don’t have quite the backache I used to. I’ve always had problems with my knees, but now I hardly notice them. I used to tire easily, now I can outlast my 19 month old daughter – okay, maybe not! At this point, I had roughly ten more pounds until goal and I could finally see the light at the end of the tunnel.

So here’s a photo of all the others lined up:

All Fat Shots Combined


I have now reached goal! This is me, in my size four mini skirt! And I actually wore it out in public and felt great! I can hardly believe I made it. I feel so good about myself. I catch a glimpse of myself in a mirror, or in the reflection of glass and I think, “wow! That’s ME!” I’ve never been this small. I can’t say I’m not still struggling with my weight. This will be a lifelong battle, I’m afraid. That fat girl still lives in this body, even though there’s not much room for her. But I’m working on my food issues, and I’ve come too far to give up. I’m sure I’ll have my setbacks, but I don’t want to be one of those women that have to rejoin Weight Watchers. I want to do this once and stick with it. It’s going to be hard, but that will make it all the more worth it.

If you’re reviewing this page because you’re starting your own journey to you, I hope you realize you can do it. I used to tell myself I just didn’t have the willpower. I used to tell myself I had no motivation. I used to tell myself I was just big-boned and had to be happy where I was. Well, I finally took control over my body. I stopped the woe-is-me attitude and decided to make a change. I didn’t want my daughter to ever have to describe her mother using the word “fat” in any of its formats. I wanted her to be proud and to know her mother takes pride in her appearance as well. Though he always has, I wanted my husband to be proud to have me as his wife – I wanted him to have reason to be proud. I wanted to be healthy. I wanted to enjoy exercise. And here I am! If I can do it, so can you!

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