by TRANSFORMATIONAL LIFE-COACH RIMA DESAI
Tag Archives: post partum depression
FROM 181 lbs to 137 lbs
Life is a journey they say, for me it was a journey from being born ‘FAT’ to staying ‘FAT’ no matter how hard I tried. Whatever I had lost, I had gained it back and even more within a few months or years. My family was super happy to have a chubby 9 lbs baby with white cheeks dangling around as ‘fun’ toy for everyone. L-O-L but did I know then that the weight would become the ‘horror’ of my life, my self-esteem and existence!
Being ‘fat’ in the Indian culture (India, Asia) is totally unacceptable. When we meet family, friends – current, old or new, the first greeting starts with a ‘weight tag’. If you have lost weight you get all the ‘wah-wahs’ (thumbs up), if you have maintained it, you get happily surprised faces gleaming half with praise and burning half with jealousy. But if you are anything like me, all you get is JUDGMENT! Major JUDGMENT, COMMENTS about your hips, thighs, stomach and lots of FREE, UNASKED for A-D-V-I-C-E! If you think this judgement came only from other women, you are so wrong. It would start with my Father, be extended to uncles, aunts, friends, siblings, everyone. Growing up I began avoiding family and people in my mind just because I was scared of the comment they had to make about my ‘body’, even my TEACHERS!!!!
Honestly, growing up without a mother was anything but fun. I had nobody to guide me to be honest. My aunts would come home, eat food and leave. Some of them were very kind, but no one was there to guide me toward HEALTHY eating, exercising, let alone help me with my DEPRESSION and GAD – Anxiety! While I was praised for my skin color, my sister was praised for her thin body. I was developing an inferiority complex that was only growing with age. My friends and cousins were thin but I could not seem to get over my ‘sugar cravings’. I DID NOT KNOW I was depressed, we could not afford money for FRUITS, I had no idea was an ACTUAL SALAD was. I was busy figuring out how to ‘survive’ amidst major financial situations, emotional starvation, pressure of school grades, lack of friends, major loneliness and a body that felt HORRIBLE. By 5th grade (10 years) I was already 57kgs!!! I had bouts of being slimmer (not slim just slimmer) and being outright ‘fat’ over the years.
I can go on with that story but at some point in 2005 I discovered how much I enjoyed exercising. I was always in to sports and was a tom boy but never had I been to the gym. I had a huge home to show the world but we did not have money anything close to spending on a basic monthly gym membership, buying any exclusive fruits, shoes or gym clothes! I started nevertheless, with some SHAME, some CURIOSITY. I was so lucky to have found an amazing instructor – Imran Sir who showed me how to use weights to tone my body and I became confidence like never before. I dropped from 61 kgs to 56 kgs, looked ravishing and soon got engaged. Life seemed just fine! …
… fast forward couple months. Married in a traditional family in East Africa, I was expected to do all house chores morning to evening and keep exercising or gyming the ‘last’ priority which wasn’t allowed to be checked marked most of the days. Eating sweets was a daily routine and choosing to eat anything beyond what was cooked was almost not an option. That is how most traditional Indian families are or were after all. I began gaining weight quickly. Fast forward… I slowly began to take charge of my life after the unexpected demise of my mother in law. I joined the gym, found another great instructor – JENNI. She was my angel in disguise. I shaped back to 59 kgs. Alas, that was temporary too!
I got pregnant and within a year, post my delivery I was 84 kgs!!! I was back to receiving comments, feeling ashamed, wanting to avoid social situations, unable to stop my sugar cravings no matter how much I tried. Being the person my dad and I have been, we eat more and binge more when depressed. I surely had it in my genes, all my parental aunts and my dad were heavy in their body and turned to sugar for busting stress but I wondered how did so many other Indian girls remain thin even after a baby and I didn’t!
5 years passed and I continued to range from 178 lbs to 181 lbs. I had moved from Africa to USA by then. Then one day, I had a wake-up call, I would say my Twin soul activated that within me. I was done being fat, feeling ashamed, socially awkward, rejected and outcast. For once, I started a weight shedding journey which was ‘SHEDDING’ not ‘LOSS’.
When we seek to ‘lose’ weight, we will ‘find’ it again at some point. When we seek to get done with it, shed it off, it’s gone forever. But what we need to know about that shedding is that more than the physical weight, what needs to go with it is the SHAME, FEELING OF REJECTION, GUILT OF EATING, VOICES OF OTHER PEOPLE, CULTURAL CONDITIONING and all the EMOTIONAL NON-SENSE that was built up and stored in our cells, bone marrow, aura, spirit and more. That was hence, the turning point in my body-weight journey.
By then I had been diagnosed with hypothyroid, the condition where weight shedding is very hard. But I was determined. I gradually cut down on and eventually gave up DAIRY PRODUCTS, DAIRY (except chocolate cravings that I had then), starting JUICING in my regular blender with ANY veggie combinations, re-began exercise becoming my own instructor (I could not afford paying one in USA). I also gave up the need to look good when I enter the gym but more than anything I BEGAN SERIOUS, INTENSE EMOTIONAL WORK. I began taking Guided Meditations, Hypnotherapy, Life-Coaching sessions to work through my FEARS, my SELF-IMAGE, how I related to my body, how I felt about myself and cried out many tears of the PAST NEGATIVE MENTAL SCRIPTS that I had internalized from the voice of other people and cultural expectations.
That internal, emotional work brought a huge transformation in the way I felt about myself, other women and about my life. I began relating better to my daughter, enjoyed my time with her, dropped my sugar cravings and found more ‘fun’ in life. All of this happened in 2015. Since then, even with major stress in my personal life with major life-changing very stressful events and having an even more complicated thyroid condition, I have managed to maintain that weight +/- 3 lbs. From 2016, I have stalled in shedding more weight simply because I suddenly had the stress and need to urgently start earning and supporting myself financially but what’s amazing is that despite working very long hours daily, major life-demands I have maintained my weight. The reason I have been able to do so is because I changed my EMOTIONAL STORY. I changed how much I would want to please the world and how much I would want to allow my fears to define my body.
I no more want or wanted to shed weight to ‘FIT INTO’ the world, I wanted to shed what made me feel good about my body. I wanted to do it at my own terms, pace and for myself. It has changed everything for me. I am not burning inside now looking at other women lose weight quickly. I am not wanting to starve myself or tell myself horrible statements for eating a couple chocolate squares. I love myself like never before.
I do have lot more weight to shed off and there is scope for me to do more EMOTIONAL WORK and PHYSICAL WORK on my body and spirit, yet it is not coming from a place of SHAME, GUILT or SELF-HATRED like before. My body does not define my emotions, life or self-acceptance. I accept my body and am okay if I don’t ‘fit’ into the society as per their expectations.
THIS IS ME 2 WEEKS AGO :)
Do you relate to this story? Does it move you or inspire you to DISCOVER YOURSELF, YOUR POWER and RECLAIM YOUR LIFE? Allow me to show you the GUIDED MEDITATIONS that you can do to shed that weight off your SUBCONSCIOUS MIND. You can never maintain your weight if you have a negative emotional story attached to yourself, your past or your body. BOOK YOUR FREE PHONE SESSION WITH ME HERE
Ever since I can remember, I wanted to be a mom. The breath of a child softly pouring on my shoulder as my arms harness it with immeasurable love, was a fancy imagination. I remember being 15, holding an infant for the 1st time in my life who fell asleep from his cries in my cuddles. 13 years later when Pregnancy found its way to me, I was so ‘out there’ with my imagination of how great motherhood will be.
Blessed with a caring, pleasant girl, motherhood has been anything but a smooth ride. It is fun, it is fulfilling, it is breathtaking. It is also challenging, sometimes ugly, sometimes skirmish.
By the 1st few months after birth, I had forgotten my heels, small fancy purses, lovely hair styles, bright clothes and well done nails. I had in fact even forgotten myself. And it left like, just a few more days until 5 years flew by with a blink and suddenly it dawned to me “why is the mirror no more my friend?” “Why does my body and mind feel so tired?” “Where is the ambitious, driven Rima?”
I had done great as a mom, great as a wife and daughter in law as well but I had traded all that for ‘myself’. And so slow and steady re-began a journey of self-discovery. A journey of ‘life’ where now my child was my mentor and I was taking ‘birth’. She was here to teach me to love myself, remember myself, care for myself while also loving her, remembering her and caring for her.
How many of you MOMs have walked this path of OVERWHELM, FEELING LOST, FEELING BURNT while also enjoying the loving arms, the gentle kiss and huge smile from your little angel?
“~ I think tons, I think tons.. I feel the wave of the new breeze, it is calling you if you wish to touch it once, it is time to be born once again ~ ”
– An inspirational message to all moms by Rima Chheda – Desai @ Theguidingstar.org