The day most of us dream about when we are young had finally arrived. I had graduated from high school and was my own person, free to make my own choices. Looking back, freedom was the start of my weight downward spiral.
Throughout my childhood, I was regarded as a chubby kid (one of those cute puppy-fat kind), but I started gaining excessive weight my first few years out of school. Remember I said I was sport-active? Well that all disappeared along with my waist line. I must have put on close to 40kg in the first two years alone! My living, I went from being 68kg to being over 100kg’s in the short space of 24 months. I was now working full-time, earning my own money to do with as I pleased which usually meant eating out and going drinking which let me tell you, has been the single hardest habit to break.
I have been extremely fortunate to have supportive people in my life. Michal (back then my boyfriend, now husband), my mother and friends never looked down on me, in fact I was consistently given affirmation about how “beautiful” I was, which looking back may have attributed to the problem.
I met my husband Michal through one of my friends Carla. I had just finished high school and was supposed to be waitressing for New Year’s Eve dinner, but at the very last minute the owner of the restaurant decided to close shop. Now what? I was stranded with no back up plans for the evening. I remember feeling quiet depressed about it all. Not even my mother could help me out as she had booked a sit down dinner with her friend’s months back and there were no available seats left. In Dias traits I called Carla and asked if I could tag along with whatever she was doing? So that was exactly what I did. I packed my handbag in 5 minutes flat and jumped in a car with her and her boyfriend at the time and off we went to Balito. Success!
To be honest as goes with most New Year’s parties, it was very disappointing. The music was horrid and most of the friends were coupled-up so I felt quiet awkward being the only single. An hour after 1999 had been welcomed in, a group of boys (one of which was Michal) recognized Carla’s boyfriend Shaun from varsity and came over to say hello. They chatted for a while then said their good-byes before asking if anyone was keen to join them for a walk around. Out of the blue I volunteered to go. This was a first for me; I’m usually quiet shy around strangers, especially boys, just goes to show you how awful the party was. I got chatting to Michal and we just clicked. We liked the same music and spend the next 5 hours talking about just that over a six pack of beer and a box of cigarettes. I had completely lost track of time, but was thankfully reminded by the morning sunrise. I said my good-bye’s, found my friends and we made our way back to Durban. On the ride home, Carla asked if I liked Michal. I hadn’t really thought about that while chatting to him but the more and more I started to, I realized that something was there. I had never in my life found it that easy to talk to a stranger, and he was kind of cute which helped. Carla, my very liberal woman of the 20th century friend, gave me his number and ordered me to call him. I was extremely reluctant to do that because I had been brought up to believe the man does the chasing. But a couple of weeks later, I eventually mustard up the courage and made the call. Thankfully Michal wasn’t at home, so I left a message with his father and the ball was officially in his court. He called back the next day and set up our first date. And the rest they say is history.