Since my 10th year( 35 years ago), I have been conscious of my weight. It started off with my father once telling me that I was putting on weight. Until that year, I had been encouraged to eat well and drink a lot of milk to grow “tall and strong”. From this time, I have been on diets off and on. In modern parlance, we might call it yo-yo dieting. I have never been at terms with my weight or my body size since that time.
In school about 4 years later, I remember being told off by one of my classmates that I was one chubby girl. I was tall for my age, much taller than the group average but yet someone told me I was chubby and I became ever more conscious of my size since then. When a teacher asked once” who is the fattest student in this group?”- I remember standing up. I still remember the look of surprise on my teacher’s face. Perhaps I was not the ” fattest student”.
When I went to college, during my first year, I remember scoring lower marks than I could ever remember in all my major subjects. It was then that I consciously remember taking resort and comfort in food. I remember gorging on peppermint candies( one of my favorite sweets) dozens at a time. I was addicted to them. I remember also indulging in cream buns by the dozen. Needless to say, these sweet pleasures affected my waistline. But the constant stress of medical school and the stress of being away from home ( a midst strangers), made me delve into more food. I remember starting off on various diets at this time. Sometimes they were ” egg diets” , sometimes ” milk diets”. I cannot remember ever eating normally or at decent times during my college days.
After I left college, I had a normal sort of relationship with food for sometime. This lasted only about a year, until my marriage. And again I started off on various up and down cycles of weight gain and loss. Every time, I felt sad, I indulged in food and every time I felt happy or confident, I had normal relationships with food.
There was a time when I had to take about 10 years off from my career to take care of my little ones. I fell behind my group mates from college in my academic career. And again my self- confidence took a beating. I was on and off the ” food band wagon”.
At the height of my obesity I weighed 95 kgs and stood above 3o on the BMI scale. It was about 10 years ago that I started developing xanthalesma ( the white patches) around my eyes. I was now sure I had hypercholesterolemia. True enough, my blood results confirmed my diagnosis.
Then I knew I had to take life under my control- I couldn’t let external factors control my life. This was the turning point of my life. I knew I had to love myself before any body else loved me. How I took control of my life is another story.