Wednesday, December 4, 2013

find YOUR drive and determination!

THE OLD ME -my 21st birthday 2001

 -thank you DeltaLabs for the feature...I'm fortunate to be part of such a beautiful company that focuses on strong, powerful WOMEN!

When I tried losing weight a million times, no matter the plan the outcome was always the same.  I’d lose 20-30lbs, feel great and then have a bad day, rebel from eating cabbage soup and it was back to bags of chips and fast food for me.  The weight would come creeping back on and before I knew it I had let myself down again…

     I noticed that my weight was an issue early on in my life.  I was taller and larger than most of my classmates, but realized that when other kids were playing and having fun, I was worried about food.  Always wanting to know when it was time to eat and what we were having.  My life was CENTERED around food.  My family gathered around food.  It was someone’s birthday, we ate….anything we could turn into a celebration and we’d EAT.  If I was hungry, instead of a light snack I’d have 3 course meals just like the adults.  While other children were enjoying childhood, I was worried about being the last one to finish my laps in PE or why my pants were too tight.  By the time I got the junior high, my weight was noticeably more than my classmates, I would stand in the snack bar line 2-3 times just to grab that last snack.  Was I hungry?  Absolutely not but I was trapped.  It only got worse as I grew older.  Yes I fit in and was a popular kid but I was smiling on the outside while feeling empty inside.  By now I had accepted that I was the “fat girl” and just tried to fit in my using my bubbly personality and it worked…for a long time. 
    Standing in my bathroom at 21 years old, I didn’t recognize myself.  I was addicted to fast food and yes I call it an addiction because I would eat one meal while watching the time pass until I could get my next.  It was like a drug to me, short-lived but felt so good as I indulged.  Sad isn’t it?  How being dependent on food can be just as painful and self-destructive as a drug?  I was a 21 year old college student, weighing 245lbs, in a size 18 and helpless.  This was my life.  I had accepted it.  Or had I?

If I wanted to CHANGE, the kind of change that would last…I had to do something drastic.  I had to change my way of thinking.  See for so long I felt like life was unfair.  Why did I have to diet and exercise to lose weight, while others stuffed their faces with chips and soft drinks and looked like Barbie and Ken?  Why??  It was when I stopped asking Why and started LIVING that my life truly changed and I never looked back....

I've shared my story a million times, reflecting a little more each time I tell it.  A part that I tried to erase from my memory seems to be the biggest FUEL that I need to keep going and fighting forward.  I was 21 years old at seemed to be at rock bottom, or so I thought.  Sitting in my college apartment, I received a call and it was from my childhood best friend.  She was SO excited and had some great news to share...
She was ENGAGED!  I was so happy for her and we both screamed with excitement.  Then she asked me to be her bridesmaid and of course, I said YES!  Why wouldn't I?  She was one of my closest friends, we had so many childhood memories and now this was the next step in her life.  Months passed and it was time for bridesmaid dress shopping!  Eeek.  This was the first wedding I'd stand in.  I arrived at David's Bridal, with many "skinny" girls all around me.  
She chose a beautiful navy dress that seemed to flatter all figures, so we tried them on and with none available (large enough) for me to try on, they took my measurements.  I sat in the store, short of breathe and just waiting for the SIZE they'd order for me....a 16?  Maybe an 18 right?  The lady came back in my dressing room and said, "Ok Ms. Louviere we've ordered you a size 22 and your dress with arrive soon."  
My heart sank.  A 22.  A girl who struggled with weight for so much of her life had actually let go.  She had given up and decided this was how her life was going to be forever huh?  Through the years I'd bounce between a 12 and 14, gain and lose here and there, try diets-lose weight-I'd get lazy and fail.  Over and over and OVER again.  This was proof.  It was out of control for me.  I stayed in that dressing room for hours.  I was embarrassed, disappointed in myself.  Just sick about it but what was I to do?  
First thing I stopped at my trusty McDonald's and grabbed lunch.  The kind that coated those emotions I was feeling and it worked, temporarily as usual.  Felt awful afterward and moved on.  But then came that night where I found myself in front of my bathroom mirror, crying.  I couldn't stop crying.  This was my life and I did not know how to change.
THAT WAS IT.  ENOUGH WAS ENOUGH, I HIT ROCK BOTTOM AND IT WAS TIME TO START MY JOURNEY...FOREVER!  Boom!  I reached deep down, thought about EVERY person that doubted me, the people that hurt me and made me feel worthless in life, the people that didn't think I could change-heck, I didn't think I could change.  I started by BELIEVING I COULD.  Don't ask me where it came from, I just did.  My first time at the gym, I cried.  I was embarrassed and intimidated.  What a scary place for a lost girl trying to find her way.  I gave fast food a rest.  It was something I depended on in my worst hours and it was time to quit.  I reflected on driving through a fast food joint at least once a day...ONCE A DAY?  That's horrible, but it was the truth and once I admitted that to myself, I moved on.  Started using my frustrations and emotions in my workouts instead of on food.  That was a HUGE milestone for me, since food played such a big role in my obesity.  I had to practice SELF-CONTROL and I still work on that daily.  
The good news?  I lost weight and it came off quickly.  I was feeling better, gaining my life back.  I was fighting for what I wanted and that felt so good...MUCH better that the temporary fix I'd get from food.  MUCH BETTER.  By the time the final dress fitting rolled around, I had lost over 70lbs and gone to a size 8!  WOOHOO!!!  Crazy things happen when we find determination and FIGHT! 

...the rest of my journey can be found here.  

Don't let the start of your journey pass you by!  Start NOW.  Find the drive and determination you've been waiting for.  Reach within and grab it!  Start LIVING :)


Stephanie Interbartolo said...

You are amazing! And you make me believe anything is possible.

Stephanie Interbartolo said...

You are amazing! And you make me believe anything is possible.

Marissa said...

I love ya Stephanie ;) believe it or not-I find A LOT of inspiration & motivation through all of you!!!

hiker mom said...

Wow Marissa such an awesome story! So glad you found your way out and continue to work so hard:)

jillconyers said...

You are AMAZING! They couldn't have picked a better ambassador of the month.

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