Region 4 Winner: Elizabeth Ramirez
Diet Pills, Detox Teas, replacing full meals with shakes or starving… How many more salads do i have to eat today?
Hi, my name is Elizabeth and I’m 26yrs old. Yes I tried it all and i lost and gained weight and i was stuck in a Yo-yo that with time, took over me not only physically, but mentally and emotionally. I didn’t always struggle with weight problems,self-appearance etc, I would always give but not take my own advice. I tried to keep in a lot more than I could handle and lost myself along the way.
My life, I would say, was pretty happy and everything seemed to be going in the right path in life,we had a beautiful daughter,my husband had joined the military until my second pregnancy in 2010-2011.
My pregnancy was very traumatic, the kind of trauma that stays with you forever. I was 6 months pregnant when my son was diagnosed with Congenital Heart Disease along with other abnormalities. After endless tests and ultrasounds, doctors gave me no hope, I had to wait to deliver him just to say goodbye or was given the option of late term abortion. I gave birth to my son at 38 weeks and was blessed to spend 2 days with him, holding him in my arms for the first and last time. To see his life slip away was traumatic. I felt like I had failed as a mother.
I also had a daughter that needed me, so I set my grief aside. I wanted her to see me being strong. I bottled up a lot of feeling and emotions that, later on, caught up to me with depression and anxiety. Food was my comfort and liquor made me happy and a pretend smile made things “okay”. Before I realized, I was at my highest weight at 190lbs. I was miserable with myself and was struggling with infertility. I ate to eat and would cry afterward because I hated how I looked. I hated seeing myself in pictures or the mirror. I didn’t even want my husband to look at me or touch me. It wasn’t until 2014, when I reached out for medical help, was my doctor straight forward with me and suggested I make changes. I did and I lost 25lbs and I became pregnant. I strongly believe the changes and the several months on the NEM page, seeing so many wonderful successful stories that have inspired me day after day, helped. I just knew I had to put my excuses and self-pity aside. I stopped wishing and complaining and daydreaming of the what if’s and started acting on what I needed. April 2016 about 9month Postpartum I made a self-commitment to get healthy and to get active and find myself again.
This year I’ve met my goals, found myself and developed a love for running and here I am, expecting another blessing. It’s been a rough pregnancy but I can proudly say, these 12 weeks I have given it my all. It has surprisingly gone by fast and I’ve met goals I didn’t think would be possible. I’ve stepped out from my comfort zone and no longer eat for comfort and because I know I’ve been through worse in life and pulled through it, I know I can accomplish anything I set my mind and heart on. I know that I am worthy of being the best version of myself as a mother/wife/person. I am happy, healthy and motivated and eager to find and reach new goals!