Tag Archives: recovering food addict

But first, let me take a selfie…

30 Nov

I have a feeling that my friends might be getting annoyed with all my Facebook and Instagram selfies, but before you hid my post let me explain (I say this because of recent comments made to me). For as long as I can remember, I have never liked taking pictures and have felt insecure about my body and looks. One might mistake my confidence now with conceit, but that is not the case. When I look in the mirror, I don’t always see what everyone else sees, it has gotten better over time but insecurity likes to creep its ugly head back in my life. I am human and often mistakes, I am super hard on myself, but I always strive to be better than the person I was the day before. My selfies remind me daily how far I have come, and I look at the only picture I do have of my previous self as reminders of where I do not want to be.

This journey is a struggle, even in maintenance I have had binging episodes, I understand that I will always have a food addiction and I have truly accepted it. What helps me is that I show myself grace daily, dust myself off and start over with the next meal. To be honest, being a wellness consultant I often feel like a hypocrite because I still struggle, but when I think about it, it makes me more relatable. Like I mentioned in a previous post, I had gained 10-13 pounds depending on the day, I let negative self talk keep me from staying where I wanted to be. I am still learning to continue to use my struggles as a learning lesson not as an excuse to stay defeated. I am putting good thing in my body and have completely changed my lifestyle. So even though I have the fear of gaining, I have total trust in myself and the process that I will not let it hold me back from life.

My encouragement to you is to always tell yourself good things. Believe in yourself enough that you never give up, and take lots of selfies!!!

After dropping 4 pant sizes.

After dropping 4 pant sizes.

When I fist started walking.

When I first started walking.

Almost to my goal weight

Almost to my goal weight

Just because:)

Just because:)

Feeling beautiful with my little girl:)

Feeling beautiful with my little girl:)

Just like him…

20 Sep

Addictions are a beast!!!

I was watching a video about military men returning home, the surprised look on their loved ones face as they seen their soldier for the first time gave me memories of when my dad would return home. Although as children we were told our dad was in the “military” or “on vacation”, in reality he was in a half way house, rehab or prison. As I struggle with addiction myself, and mess up on daily basis, I think of my dad. I am not sure if it was because his birthday recently passed or because sometimes I just feel completely alone as my extended family is a bit of a mess.

I think about how much he might have wanted to be there for me, or keep his promises about doing good this time because he found Jesus. I think about that one last high or drink of his that kept him from me. I am not bitter towards him, I just really wish he knew that I completely forgave him and I wish he could see the woman I have become. There was a family prophecy that all Larry’s kids would end up in gangs, in prison or dead. Even though I had a rough start in life, I have completely changed the way I think and how I feel about my purpose. One of the things he always told me was, “mija, you need to lose weight because I don’t want you to get the diabetes” (adding the in front of diabetes always made me laugh). Just like him, I didn’t know how to beat my addiction, just like him, no matter how many times I tried I always let myself down, just like him, I let the guilt and shame of my past control my future and control who I was meant to be.

If you are reading this and struggle with a food addiction, you are not alone. It is so important for me to tell you that if you feel you have tried for the last time, try again. Know that your life is precious, and no matter what people say to you, your life is worth saving. I say this all the time and it is so true, this journey is tough, the first step is the hardest, but the end result is definitely worth it! I had to let this out, sometimes things are heavy on my mind and I have to write or I feel like I have missed an opportunity to help someone. Never stop trying, always strive to be better than you were the day before and keep on keepin on:)

Mona

*if you ever have any question, please don’t hesitate to write me a note

Fresh Start…

27 Mar

I was recently asked to be a team captain of the Biggest Winner competition through the New Well program here in Grants Pass. I would say, the New Well is compared to Weight Watchers because of the support and many different services they offer. I am not being paid by the New Well to say any of this, this is my honest experience good and bad. I was excited when I was asked to be a team captain because I want to encourage and help those who are battling food addiction and what a great way to do it. The Biggest Winner is compared to the Biggest Loser but on a much smaller level and only locals and those already participating in the New Well Program can join. I will get to meet with the people I am helping weekly, workout with them and challenge them. So in order to know the program I have to go through it right? YES!

Tuesday the 25th of March was my first day on the New Well Fresh Start Program, to be completely honest I was intimidated and had a bit of anxiety. When I was doing things on my own, I never limited myself any foods healthy or unhealthy, but it was my understanding that to get to where I wanted to be there were things that I just didn’t eat. I wanted to reach my goal and so I would pick the best things for myself and it helped me knowing that I did have a choice. Reading the list of foods I could eat, even though it was in unlimited amounts made me freak out inside. What do you mean I can’t eat my oatmeal and have cream in my coffee? This was comfortable to me, this is what have done for several months and leaving my comfort zone threw me back to the very beginning of my journey. You have to remember, I have been doing this on my own for the past 14 months. No one wrote down a meal plan for me and said follow this, eat this, don’t eat this. It was trial and error, I wrote down my foods, if I had a bad week, I avoided those foods or only ate them occasionally. I was in control, it has always felt good knowing this was the only thing in my life had control over. I didn’t like that part being told what I could and couldn’t eat, but I wanted to follow the plan as written (sometimes I am a bit of an over achiever), because at this point in my journey I am very disciplined. I have 7 pounds to lose and I am not hurting myself or anyone else by trying something new. And OH MY GOSH MONA, IT’S ONLY THREE DAYS (three days without my oatmeal and cream seems like a lifetime;)!!!!!

Today I am on day three and I feel pretty good minus the detox headache, I never realized how much sugar is in a slimfast bar and how much sodium I was consuming. When I think of sugar I think sweets, but its a lot of things that are processed. I have been following the program as written, except yesterday I had to eat a Quest Bar because of my intense workout. There are things that are really similar to what I have already been doing, and I don’t feel like I am missing out. The only bad thing I have to say at this point is the first three days, you really have to be at home or work where there is a refrigerator. Because I can’t eat my bars, grains or nuts I had a hard time with finding a snack to take on the go. I talked to one of the consultants and she suggested hard boiled eggs, I will try that today because I will be out and about. This has been so good for me, I think it is good to change things up and try new things. I will treat this program like I did in the beginning of my journey, even though my mind wants certain foods, I have to trust that if I abstain that I will get to where I want to be in a healthy and safe way.

Weight loss is such a mind game, the physical list of things I could eat made me second guess myself, made me think I wasn’t strong enough. Even though I had come so far it was something new and it had structure and it scared the crap out of me. That list caused me anxiety but at the end of the day I had the choice to say, no matter what I am going to do it. Everyday we have a choice, whether you are just starting out, you are at your goal/almost there or this is your 100th attempt. Your choice is to keep fighting to save your life, or stay stuck in the endless cycle of trying and giving up. Addiction is a beast, like I said before in a previous blog I have seen it control and take several people I love. I don’t want to be in bondage ever to my addiction, I want to be around to see my children grow up. I want to continue to make memories with my family, love on my friends and change my world. That is what pushes me to succeed, find whatever your drive is and don’t look back!!

Be encouraged, try something new, change your life, change your world:)

Mona

Beautiful Tragedy…

15 Mar
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    The last picture I took before the birth of my youngest daughter.

    I wrote a blog back in January titled “Layers”, sometimes I just write to clear my mind and other times there is a specific thing I feel I should write about to not only remind myself but to help others. I told you about my hysterectomy and how my life was almost taken after the birth of my youngest daughter. Last night I got to meet one of the nurses who had a hand in saving my life and it was the most amazing experience. Two separate lives that were both impacted by this beautiful tragedy, two lives that were forever changed because of the power of prayer. 

    I struggled with my purpose in life after that day, I remember feeling like God was picking on me and how much I resented him for bringing me back. In my mind I feel like I was so angry because I got a glimpse of heaven and wondered why I needed to come back to such a dark and hateful world (I don’t remember anything about that day other than passing out and waking up). One painful heart ache after another is all I ever thought life would be and it was all I have ever known, I stayed stuck in a depression for over a year. There were times I was thankful and thought about my O Positive blood donor, the doctors and nurses that worked on me but never really thought about person. They had lives too, they seen trauma everyday and still had to go home not knowing if the person they were helping made it through the night. Not knowing if the person used their second chance to continue on the road that lead them where they were or if they had the courage to change. Can you even imagine working to save a mother of 5 children, one who was a newborn and another physically disabled? They worked so hard that day to make sure I was alive to be a mother to my children, a wife to my husband and a life changer to my world. The events in our lives can make us bitter or they can impact our lives in such a way that we do all we can to make sure no one ever has to experience the pain we felt. 

    When I started the Blue Slide Project (a wheelchair accessible playground at Parkside Elementary in Grants Pass, Or) I started coming back to life, I was still held back by my layers but had a spark of hope. I was leaving my house to go to meetings, forming friendships and volunteering in my community. I seen that although the world was dark and hateful, there were those who were trying to “overcome evil with good”(Romans 12:21). I met some really great people and have formed bonds that could not have formed without the tragedy’s in my life. When my brother passed away, I took one step back and felt like I was slipping again. I remember my husband telling me, “I know how much your brother meant to you, but you have a family that needs you to get better”. I was angry at first because he didn’t understand my pain, but it was those words that helped me get to where I am today. I woke up one day shortly after that talk and decided I can not let obesity take my life. 

    Last night when I talked to the nurse I had the opportunity to see how valuable my life was to strangers, how much they didn’t give up on me and how even to the point of death I was still “fighting”. After the doctors had done all they could to save my life, they informed my husband that they did not expect me to make it through the night. She told me how 3 nurses gathered in the hall after working on me for about an hour and prayed that my fate would not be death. The next day she peaked her head in the door to see that I had survived the night, and that is one of the things I remember as I was slipping in and out of consciousness.  We both stood their sobbing, and I began to thank her for what she did and for being a life saver. Of course her response was, “the doctors saved you, I didn’t”. My reply was simple, “yes, but you prayed”. So why would I ever give up on my life? Why should I ever feel like my work here is in vain? I won’t anymore, I cried all the way home thanking God for sparing my life and for a second chance. I was brought back to do good works and change the lives of my family and those around me. Although I am not perfect, and often make mistakes, I told God I would do my best from this day forward to be the light and carry hope.

     

    Here is a picture I was always ashamed of, every time I saw it I seen trauma I never seen a miracle although I knew there was one there. I remember that day, and days after, it was such a dark and lonely time because no one was able to convince me that my life was a miracle. I have a scar on my neck from the picc line in my jugular vein and was angry every time I saw it. Now its a reminder of hope and I will no longer be ashamed of my scar but celebrate in all I have overcome. I don’t want to sound boastful I am just so grateful that God is faithful to his word. When He says, “To all who mourn in Israel, he will give a crown of beauty for ashes, a joyous blessing instead of mourning, festive praise instead of despair. In their righteousness, they will be like great oaks that the LORD has planted for his own glory.” Isaiah 61:3 All Glory to God who saved me by his grace and gave me hope through all my beautiful tragedy’s, 

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    This was the day before I left the hospital, can you see the picc line in my jugular vein?

    Please if you are reading this, don’t let a tragedy wake you up, don’t let pain be what motivates you to change your eating habits or the things in your life that hold you back. I know a lot of this is repeats from previous blogs but I really want you to understand how much freedom I have received by letting things go. For Christ died so we could live, He carried our sin and shame on the cross so we could have freedom. The greatest beautiful tragedy of all time…

    Be blessed,

    Mona:)

     

     

     

     

     

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    My current before and after, a 151 pound loss in a little over 1 year.

  • Why not?

    12 Feb

    The why’s of this world will weigh us down and break our spirit. Why did they do that? Why did this happen? Why can’t I lose weight? Why is that person so successful and I am not? Why, why, WHY?! Ask yourself a new why, why not me? Why not today? Why not now?!!!

    Sometimes we focus on someone else’s journey that we leave ours unwritten. Today tell yourself “why not me?” The cares and worries of this world hold us back from who we are meant to be. Live in freedom, be the person God created you to be aim high and don’t look back at the person you said goodbye to. My journey to health came as a result of a tragedy,  that tragedy saved my life.

    Today I choose freedom,  today I choose health,  today I choose to save my life. Use your choices wisely:)

    Happy Wednesday, 

    Mona
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    My Meal Plan…

    14 Jan

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    PLEASE REMEMBER I AM NOT A DOCTOR OR A NUTRITIONIST, I have been asked what types of things I eat and what has helped me lose all my weight. I did NOT have any surgeries and did not use any weight loss aids, no magic pill or shakes just hard work and dedication to health. I copy and pasted this from My Secret to Weight loss blog on wordpress monapinonmomof5@wordpress.com ” In the past 9 months I have tried a few weight loss plans but mostly have stuck with counting calories and exercising (Weight Watcher meals and Slim Fast barare my usual go tos). You really have to listen to your body to figure out what works best for you. The secret to my weight loss success was not a magic shake or pill, it was me believing in myself and working hard towards my goal. It’s not the weight loss plan that works, its the persons hard work and determination that makes the plan work. It was all trial and error for me, in the beginning I chose to do a low calorie diet and although it taught me to only use food for fuel it had negative side affects. My hair started to fall out and I was fatigue, since I loved to exercise (and love my hair lol) I quickly realized that I needed to eat more. I still eat the foods I love but I have learned to make a healthier version and in proper portions.”

    Here is a sample of what I eat throughout the day.

    Breakfast

    1 cup of coffee with a splash of flavored cream (I use regular cream at home but when I buy my drink out I get sugar free caramel with (1 tablespoon of cream)

    Fruit Smoothie (when it is warm out)

    1/4 cup of yogurt

    3/4 cup of milk

    add about a cup of frozen fruit

    or

    Oatmeal, I add a little bit of milk and 1/2 tsp of brown sugar (You will get use to not using so much sugar over time)

    or 

    Veggie egg white omelet (I usually eat this on Saturday because I have time)

    2 egg whites

    1/4 cup onion

    1/4 cup bell pepper

    1/4 cup mushroom 

    sprinkle of cheese

    Slim Fast Bar or Weight Watcher Meal

    (this is what I eat now since my mornings are usually busy.) I try and not eat bread more than once a day.)

    Mid morning Snack (choose 1)

    A few slices of lean turkey (this is my usual)

    handful of nuts

    dried fruit (if I want something sweet)

    fresh fruit

    Lunch

    Chicken Salad with salsa as dressing

    or

    Progresso Soups Light or regular I try to go over 100 cal per serving 

    or

    Slim Fast Bar/Weight Watcher Meal

    or

    Subway Oven Roasted Chicken/pepper jack cheese with tons of veggies a little bit honey mustard and siracha sauce

     

    afternoon snack

    Same as Morning snack

    Dinner

    Tostadas

    1 corn tortilla baked (rub coconut oil on tortilla, bake for 4 min each side at 400 degrees).

    1/2 cup ground turkey

    homemade refried beans

    Lettuce 

    spinach

     

    tomato

    plain greek yogurt (to act as sour cream)

    Salsa

    Evening snack

    Same as other snack choices, I like to eat protein but will eat a fruit if I have not had one yet.

    Basically I eat whatever I make my family for dinner but I watch the portions, I never feel deprived because I found healthier ways to make the things I like. You have to ask yourself when making a food choice, “if I eat this will it help me get closer to my goal or push me further away?” If you feel hungry throughout the day and have already had your snack eat some nuts or a few slices of lean turkey. When I workout in the morning I am hungry from all the extra calories I burned so I make sure I have a snack when I get home. Water is so important, I can not stress this enough, it will not only help you feel fuller but helps with digestion and you will find that your skin is healthier. Whatever plan you are on as long as you stay focused it will work! You will start to see a change in your attitude when you see it as a lifestyle and not a diet. I currently eat between 1,200-1,500 cal depending on my exercise. If you are just starting out, start with at least 15 min of exercise a day and work your way up to 30-45 min. In the beginning I only walked for exercise, if you can do more that is awesome. Please listen to your body, like I said before I am not a nutritionist, I have no clue if what I am doing is right I just know it was right for me. If you have any questions please message me below or visit my facebook fan page http://www.facebook.com/savingmona

    Thank you so much for reading!

     

    Mona