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Eating Is Freedom

pregnant woman holding her bellyAnd the last in the series of lessons shared by our Board members comes from TOPS Second Vice President and Service Program Administrator, Deanna Bies.

Deanna Bies Lesson

Eating Is Freedom

Deanna BiesI’ve been thinking recently about my weight-loss journey. I remember having been viewed as overweight throughout my teenage years, even though the actual number on the scale didn’t really indicate it—my body did—or so I was told. In thinking back, that started the eating habits that I still struggle with many years later. In the 1960s, the trend was starving yourself to lose the weight. That started my private eating battle.

When I was pregnant with my first child, I remember thinking I could now eat anything I wanted because I was going to gain weight anyway. It was freeing and I felt empowered in a way I’d never felt before. I just thought the weight would fall off as soon as the baby was born. I gained 60 pounds with that pregnancy and was around 200 pounds when my son was born. The memory of stepping on the scale after his birth and only losing 10 pounds is still vivid in my mind. I had just lost my “freedom” of eating.

Now my youngest of three children is 50 years old and I’m still struggling. I’ve lost and gained large amounts of weight numerous times. When I almost get to that “magic” number on the scale, my mind seems to kick into overdrive and starts thinking once again that my “freedom” will be gone forever. I make a choice at that moment and it usually sends me in the direction I don’t really want to go.

Instead, I’m working on reversing that conversation in my head. I try to think every day I’m on this healthy journey that I am GAINING my “freedom.” By making my own choices and owning those choices, I can eat and be healthy because it’s MY choice. Not because everyone around me is pushing me in that direction.

It’s difficult to get the negative talk out of our heads, but we have to take back our power and push the naysayers away. The memories we have of our journeys will direct our futures—if we let them. So let’s make our journey positive—every day—in some way.

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