Posts Tagged ‘losing weight’

Gaining Weight Through the Years

I wasn’t always fat. During my teen years, I was pretty slim. Though I had to keep it up because I already had the tendency to gain weight. I was very conscious of my looks back then and my weight  and body was important to me so I exercised regularly and dieted religiously. Here’s a photo of me and Gary D. when we were just dating. He and I were both slim.



We got married in 1995 and I became pregnant shortly thereafter.


Becoming pregnant for the first time made me think that it is okay to gain weight. So I let myself go and just ate and ate. With the first pregnancy, I gained a total of 40 lbs. Dealing with a baby and caring for my marriage so filled up my time that caring for myself was no longer a priority. More and more, I let myself gain weight even after the baby came. I didn’t know then how I could dress myself up well, so I wore my mother’s clothes all the time. I was a very young mother who wore a 50 year old woman’s clothes. I was fat and depressed and wasn’t very happy with myself.


I tried going back to my old routine of exercise and diet but I was overwhelmed with depression (I think) and felt that I could never lose all that fat. Add to that the constant pressure from my family to lose weight. I felt rejection and shame from some members of my family because I gained weight. I experienced being compared to other young mothers who were able to gain back their pre-pregnancy bodies and confronted why I am not like them. And because I didn’t know how to dress well, I was also constantly ridiculed in public by someone in my family. I am the youngest and was used to being told off so I could never fight for myself. Instead I wallowed in my depression. To mask the hurt and pain that I felt, I continued to eat and eat.

Three years after the first baby was born, I was pregnant again with our second child. My weight was already about 160 lbs. I loved being pregnant because those were the times when I felt the most special, the most beautiful. People were kinder to me. It didn’t matter that I was fat because I was growing a baby. My OB-Gynecologist warned me, though, that I couldn’t gain as much weight as I did before because it could pose complications with my baby and me. With this in mind, I was very mindful of myself and made sure that I only gained the requisite 25lbs for the whole pregnancy. Strangely, I am able to maintain the weight gain of 25 lbs for all my pregnancies except for the first one. It’s as if I only want to take care of myself when I am pregnant.


After giving birth, I was back to my old self. Still the woman with such low self-esteem that I allowed people to talk to me badly. If someone told me how fat I am, I accepted it. If someone from out of the blue begins to sermonize me about the disadvantages of being fat, I accepted it. if someone laughs at me or ridicules me for being fat, I stayed silent. I didn’t have the courage to fight back and stand up for myself because I thought that I deserved it for being so fat.

Despite all of that, I continued to care for my family and showered them with love and care. I taught my children to speak up and stand for themselves.  A lot of things were happening in our lives, too. I started homeschooling my children, resigned from my full time job (which is my work at our family business), and started living frugally. I was used to a comfortable life so struggling with money was very hard for me.

Sometime in 2002 or 2003, my sister started studying to be a professional psychotherapist. At that time, we lived just a few streets from each other so every time she got home from school, we would get together and she’d tell me what she learned so far. This sister of mine was very forward-thinking. God had given her the assurance when she was still young that things could be different. With her help, I came to know myself better. I’m blessed because I became sort of like her protégé. I learned as she learned. Together we started working out the issues of our past, those things that were holding us down.  Very slowly, I started loving myself again.


I started observing how women with curves like mine dressed up. I started becoming more conscious of my looks and began to appreciate the curves that I had. I worked on looking good and dressing up well. I was determined to look fabulous even as a fat woman. Even slower still, I learned to speak up to people who made fun of me because I was fat. Many Filipino people like to ridicule fat people as if that’s the norm. Most think that we don’t mind it or that we deserve it. They speak as if they have no physical weakness themselves, as if being thin gave them the right to make fun of fat people.


Though I started dressing well, I still wanted to lose weight. Unfortunately, I feel like I have lost this battle with weight. After five children, I have continued to grow and am in my highest weight right now. Whatever that is, I’d like to keep it to myself for now. The sad thing now is that I have passed on my poor eating habits to my children. Most of us, except for one, are overweight. In the past, I tried all kinds of diet but my family’s diet remained the same. I’d lose some weight but gave up because the diets are were too much work. I also tried exercising again but exercise is the first thing to go when life becomes too busy.

I’m worried. I’m 41 and fat with a husband and four children who need me to be energetic and alert. They need me to be healthy and strong to take care of them. They also want me to take care of myself. I want to take care of myself. I’m at a loss because of all the many diet books I’ve read and the information overload online. Though it feels like I’ve lost, I still don’t want to give up on myself. I still want to give this my best effort. I WANT TO CHANGE. I want to feed my family healthy foods. I want to stop getting sick. I want to get rid of all our medicines. I want to be a healthy role model for my children to follow.

This shot was taken less than two weeks ago. We thought we’d take a family Christmas shot for this year’s Christmas card twelve months from now. I remember someone in my family said, “But what if we lose weight and look different by Christmas this year?” Mike of MRLightworkz Photography said, “Then we’ll just take another picture.”

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And that is my hope. That by Christmas this year, 11 and a half months from now, we’ll be taking another picture and not use this picture for our Christmas greeting because we don’t look the same anymore.

A blogger friend of mine, Mommy Ginger, shared her own weight struggle and I’m sharing mine. Are you in the same boat as I am? Wanting to lose weight, be healthy but don’t know how to get there? Why don’t we journey together and see where this will take us? The reason I wrote this post is not only to tell my story, it’s also for me to remember and figure out how I got here. And maybe from there, go on the path to healing and becoming whole, healthy and fit.