Thanksgiving is here! I always tend to get somewhat sappy this time of year. Thanksgiving is the day each year that I celebrate my life. I began my weight loss journey on Thanksgiving day and right around Thanksgiving a few years later, I found out that I was pregnant with our first little miracle, our son Benaiah. I am grateful for the life I live, the ones I love and I am thankful beyond measure for the new life within me.
In retrospect, I cannot believe I actually chose Thanksgiving Day to begin the seemingly insurmountable task of weight loss. At that time, the thought that was going through my head was, "Well, if I make Thanksgiving the day I change my eating habits and food choices, maybe I won't have 10 more pounds to lose!" Up until then, the inevitable aftermath of potatoes, mounds of gravy and pie was a substantial number of pounds.
I have to give all my thanks to my mother for making the first day of my weight loss journey a success. I arrived at my aunt’s house for our typical Thanksgiving meal thinking I would just eat less of all the fixings and goodies. However, my mom was smarter. She arrived with a serving of green beans and a big fresh salad made just for me – with a healthy, homemade dressing on the side! She advised me to add a reasonable amount of turkey to my meal and to completely stay away from all the other items that were served. She made so many green beans (and the salad was so large) that by the time I was done, I was actually full and satisfied! Amazingly, I didn't even feel deprived. Rather, I felt empowered that I chose health for the first time that day.
The secret to my success that first day was all in the preparation, love and effort displayed by my mother. Thanksgiving could have been my first and last day of my journey. Instead, I embarked on an adventure that has brought me more blessings in return for my efforts. As most of you know, my main desire for weight loss was to become a mother. My weight held me captive and robbed me of that dream.
I took charge, made changes, and as a result, overflowing blessings came to me. Nearly a year after my weight loss, I conceived my son. I am still humbled and awed to be carrying another baby right now. My life is so rich because of one thing I did for myself. I needed to lose the weight for my own health and for my future family. I had no choice. When I was having a hard day I often told myself this quote:
"Don't lose sight of what you want the most for what you want in the moment."
I wanted health. I wanted to be a mom. I wanted to be able to take a step without gasping for air. I desired, more than anything, to feel like the vibrant young woman I was inside, and to be able to do the many things I would often only dream of. I was tired of all the dreaming about what my life could be.
Dr. Oz's “5 Rules to Live By” changed my life when I began following them on Thanksgiving day. I still live by those rules because they continue to give me much to be thankful for. I thanked Dr. Oz last year and I will thank him again this year. I am thankful for his passion to educate and be a catalyst for change. I want my life to inspire others to have hope that they too can regain their lives and finally live life to the fullest. There is no better time of year to make the change. Thanksgiving is a time of year to recount all the blessings that are so available to us. My hope for you is that you can add health and wellness to the top of the list of things you are thankful for!