At 23st I was desperate to be a mum, but one big fat problem was holding me back. So, I decided to do something about it…
By Macey Jones, 29, from Bristol
I grabbed a packet of crisps and settled down on the sofa to watch TV. I demolished the packet in seconds and before I knew it, I was reaching for another pack.
This wasn’t exactly unusual – I was addicted to the savoury snacks and scoffed around six bag of crisps a day.
I absolutely loved my food and a typical day would start with a pack of biscuits or a McDonald’s for breakfast, followed by a pasty and a cream cake for lunch.
On top of this, I would order a massive doner kebab, complete with chips and all the trimmings, almost every night.
I would wash all this down with a few pints of full-fat coke and demolish a huge slab of cake and ice cream for dessert. If I got peckish later on, I would snack on an entire family-sized bar of chocolate.
So it wasn’t surprising when my weight crept up to a massive 23st 7lbs and I ballooned to a size 24.
The only exercise I got was walking to and from the bus stop, or walking around the aisles in ASDA.
Clothes shopping was a chore as I could never get anything to fit me – so eventually I avoided going to the shops altogether.
My weight started causing me health problems, like polycystic ovary syndrome and bad joints, and I became withdrawn and depressed.
I had absolutely no confidence and stayed in where I knew I couldn’t be stared and pointed at. It was a vicious cycle – the worse I felt about my weight, the more I ate to make myself feel better.
I had tried a few diets before, but after a few days I often caved in to the sugary treats and junk food that I loved so much.
‘I’ll just start again on Monday,’ I told myself – but time and time again, my willpower failed me and I gave up.
But there was one thing I wanted more than anything – something that I knew would make me happy – a baby.
I had always longed to be a mother, and imagined myself with a family to call my own.
I was with my former partner, Iquball, for two and a half years, and during that time I had suffered four heartbreaking miscarriages.
Our relationship suffered from the strain and we eventually broke up in November 2011.
After the break up, I couldn’t shake my desire to have a family, and I wondered if it would ever happen for me.
Desperate for answers, I went to the doctor for advice – and that’s when he dropped the bombshell: I was too fat for a baby.
‘Macey, are you aware that you’re actually clinically obese?’ he said, after running some tests. ‘That is why you haven’t had any luck having a baby. If you lost weight then your PCOS would probably ease and you would have a far better chance of conceiving.
‘Carrying on like this will make it impossible for you to have a baby. You’re also eating yourself into an early grave.’
Hearing his blunt words really hit home and made tears sting my eyes. But I knew the pain of not becoming a mother one day would be far worse.
I silently vowed to make a change. Otherwise, I risked having more miscarriages.
So a few weeks later, in September 2012, I woke up one morning more determined than ever to change my lifestyle.
I sat down at my kitchen table and wrote myself a diet plan. I planned every single meal and went straight to the supermarket to cram my fridge full of healthy salads and lean meat.
I started by eating a healthy bowl of porridge for breakfast, and swapping my usual bakery lunch for a jacket potato with tuna or beans.
Dinner was grilled chicken or fish with vegetables and I swapped my sugary fizzy drinks for water.
I started walking everywhere too. At first it was a real struggle after so many years of hardly moving at all, and after just five minutes I couldn’t catch my breath.
But I persevered and pushed myself a little bit further every day. I vowed to keep at it and not weigh myself at all until a year had passed.
So in September 2013, I stepped on the scales and almost cried with joy – I’d lost a whopping 10 stone 7lbs! I couldn’t believe it, I had dropped from a size 24 to a slinky size 12.
Weighing in at just 13 stone, I’d never felt better, and my doctor was impressed too.
‘Your PCOS has disappeared!’ he said. ‘You’ve done brilliantly.’ I was delighted.
People often did a double take when they saw me, power walking down the street – friends who had known me for years couldn’t believe the change in me..
Things were looking up for me where my love life was concerned too. Five months earlier, in April 2013, I’d got together with Jason, 41, after meeting through mutual friends.
We got on brilliantly and pretty quickly, I found myself falling head over heels for him. Jason was completely different to any of the men I had been in relationships with before.
He was charming and kind and supported me wholeheartedly in my slimming mission, cooking me healthy meals and joining me for my brisk walks.
As we’d got together halfway through my weight loss journey I knew Jason loved me for who I was. I was sure I had landed on my feet with him – and in time I confided in him about my desire to have a family.
Luckily for me, Jason wanted a family too, and as soon as I reached my target weight we decided to start trying for a baby.
Then in February 2014, I discovered I was pregnant. I was thrilled – it was the cherry on the cake after all my hard work. All of my dreams were coming true.
I was on tenterhooks throughout the pregnancy, but I needn’t have worried. As my bump grew, Jason and I became more and more excited at the idea of becoming parents.
Our little bundle of joy, Jordyn, was born in December last year. Setting eyes on him was the best Christmas present I could have ever hoped for. He weighed 8lbs 1oz and my labour was only 19 minutes long!
‘Mummy had to work very hard to bring you into the world!’ I joked as I held him for the first time. My heart swelled with pride when I looked into his eyes. I hadn’t dared to imagine that this moment would ever happen to me.
I don’t think I have ever felt as grateful as I did when Jason and I spent our first Christmas with our beautiful son.
Being a mother is all I’ve ever dreamed of – and I’m so thrilled to finally have the family I’ve always craved.
Jordyn is now one and he has a happy and healthy mummy to take care of him.
My PCOS has disappeared and I love being a mum to my gorgeous little boy. Being lighter on my feet certainly has it’s advantages when I’m running around after him all day!
Jason and I would love to have another child in the future, but for now we are happy to focus on Jordyn.
I often think back to the day that the doctor told me that I had fat chance of becoming a mum, but it was just the kick I needed to lose the weight and change my life completely.
I lost 10 stone, to gain 8lbs of pure joy – and it was the best thing I ever did.
As told to Helen O’Brien Google
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