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    May 2004    Page 8       > About LCL Magazine      > Cover Page      > Inside Cover      Feature Pages:   1   2   3   4   5   6   7   8   9   10   11  12     

 

Featured Articles
 Sugar Alcohol Syndrome
 Springtime Recipes
 Notes From The Field
 An Open Letter to Mother
 Here's What's New!
 The New Aromatherapy
 Jonny Bowden Weighs In
 Manda's Story
 It's A Jungle Out There
 5 Ways to Beautiful Skin
 Make It Low Carb!
 Snapshot: Longhorn Steaks


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    Lose Weight with a Treadmill

    e-Harmony

 
        Manda's Story by Amanda Hall

The Alan Parsons Project reminded us that "time... keeps flowing like a river, to the sea..."

Somehow we always think there will be plenty of time. Well, so what if I didn't get "back on plan" today. There's always tomorrow, right?

I want to tell you those tomorrows really add up. They become the building blocks of hopelessness. After a time, many of us get the "what difference does it make?" feeling and stop trying at all...

A terrific woman named "Manda" (Amanda Hall) sent us her story last year and feedback from those who read it told us it really struck a chord with them. So now we share it with all of you. Manda is 42 years old, married, with one daughter.


Hello LCL subscribers. I'm new to this so please bear with me. I am hoping that my story might be able to help some of you at least a little. My thanks to Lora for helping me put this together.

When I graduated from High School in a little town outside Chicago in the late 70's, I was a thin and popular girl. I was thin because I starved myself pretty much all the time. It didn't seem that hard then and my life was really busy all the time so it didn't leave a lot of time to dwell on food.

I married young. And I got pregnant young. Still not a very unusual story, but things began to change soon after. Once I'd found I was pregnant, I didn't seem to be able to voluntarily avoid food anymore. I craved sweets and ate them usually late at night when no one was around.




My most shameful moment came when I was about 5 months pregnant. I'd been up watching TV late and I had a Sara Lea double chocolate cake stashed in the back of the fridge. I'd already told my husband I was "cutting out sweets" so I'd planned to dig into that cake when I was sure he was fast asleep and couldn't "catch me". It was about 2 AM now, so I figured the coast was clear.

I went to get the cake and was about to slice it when the thought came over me, "just eat it all..." What? Where did that come from? I could hear how absurd it sounded, but I didn't want to leave any "evidence" — or at least that was the rationale. So I put the entire cake onto a paper plate, grabbed a fork and began to stuff crumbly sugary mouthfuls in as fast as I could.

A moment later, I froze. I heard a sound... it wasn't the TV. Was it the bedroom door? I heard footsteps. Oh my God, my husband was up and he was going to witness this debacle. I tried to move quickly, and in reality, I did, but to my perceptions, I was in slow-motion. My memories of it now seem like that part of the Six Million Dollar Man where Steve Austin kicks into high gear, yet he's seen moving so very slowly...

Where to go? I dove under the kitchen table, cake and all. Only the faint light over the kitchen window illuminated the room, and the table was in the shadows, so I felt concealed. "Hold very still," I told myself.

My husband entered the room, sauntered to the fridge — totally unaware of the drama that had just taken place — and reached for a cold can of Pepsi. I could hear the can pop open and could see him lean back as he drank. He put the can on the counter, and quietly padded back out of the room and presumably back to bed.

We never spoke of it, and I'm sure it lives only in my memory, but I will never forget the ludicrous moment I opted to throw my pregnant body under that table with the cake that was nothing more than a drug.

But if you're thinking I'll be telling you this was a turning point when I saw the danger of my chosen path, you'd be wrong. It was just the beginning.

I miscarried that child. And the grief drove me further into my need for sugar, sugar, more sugar. I was no longer thin. I grew in despair as well as in girth. And my marriage began to suffer. Over the years, I would start many diets and fail them all. Each time, the weight became more plentiful and the self-loathing grew. And each time my failures were centered on "this one cookie (or cake, or donut, or...) can't hurt me. I'll go right back on plan tomorrow."

Of course I never did.

I found the Atkins Diet six years later and knew the first success I'd had in years. But as I know many of you will relate to, I was warned it was killing me. And by then, I'd become pregnant again (with my precious daughter, Rachel-Marie.) So I was told the Atkins Diet would hurt my baby. And that was all I needed to hear to abandon it.

The promises didn't stop, though. I promised my husband. I promised my mother. I promised myself. I was always going to get my life in gear and get this weight off. I just needed to get past this one big client at work. Or needed to get past the sale of our home. Or past training the new puppy. There was always an excuse. And I wasn't being deliberately deceitful. Somehow, I was waiting for a miracle. I never knew I had the answer all along. And that the miracle was in me.

Weeks turned into months. Months turned into years. And now, I am 40 years old. Still married to the same man. But now, there are "two of me" — the girl that weighed 122 pounds when she married is now 255 pounds. Or at least I was only 4 short months ago. I have lost 32 of those pounds since I acknowledged — like a drug addict or an alcoholic — that I am addicted to carbs and sugar. That I cannot have ANY sugar and only a small amount of the healthiest of carbs.

I was having a talk with my mother yesterday about memories. How we chose what we remember. How we bolster those we WANT to remember with THINGS that underscore them. It's why people pay a fortune on eBay for things of bygone eras. They are tangible reminders. They are our childhood. Their intrinsic value often matters little.

If you are one of those people on a diet merry-go-round and are living your life through captured memories of better days, I implore you to make the commitment now and for life. Make each day NOW a great memory for later. Time waits for no man (or woman...)

Manda Hall
255/223/130

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