Six years ago, I had a little baby who was having some difficulty. She was my 6th baby, and she followed fast on the heels of her sister, who was just a year older.
I was really struggling with raising my kids, trying to be the best mom possible, and setting unrealistically high standards.
My baby was found to be on the autistic spectrum, and we began dealing with occupational therapists, developmental pediatricians, and physical therapists. We worked on speech therapy, worked with the sleep and feeding clinics, and in general, my life was very overwhelming.
I had developed poor eating habits with my first couple of kids and having two kids back-to-back made me reach for the food much too often. I was deeply unhappy, and who better to cheer me up than Ben & Jerry?
I consoled myself with food. Chocolate, fancy coffees, brownies with ice cream and chocolate sauce, french fries. The list grew. I ate myself from an already comfortable 14-16 right into an 18-20. It took a comment from a family member, telling me she was happy I was no longer the skinny one, and a comment from one daughter's friend that "at least she didn't have a fat mom!" to wake me up.
I decided to stop and take a good, hard look at my life. I realized I needed to make some changes in my life and get back to being myself. After all, I'd been a very happy, and pretty good, ballet dancer in my teens and was slim until I was in my early thirties. There was no reason for me to be that stereotypical "fat" mom, no reason for me to be unhappy with myself. The people at Pfizer call this "Returning to You", the time in her life when a woman decides to return to being her best self.
I began an exercise regime and slowly, slowly, so slowly it seemed to take forever, the weight came off, and the life came back into me. It's tough being a woman in her 40s. We start to experience creaks and cramps, our bodies start doing their own things, growing hair in awkward places, and we just aren't the young women we once were.
It's a challenge to find ourselves resembling our mothers more than our daughters. Topics that we never considered, such as menopause and heart health, begin to creep into the forefront of our thoughts, and we often lose our places.
Exercise helps all of these areas. It helps us to keep our figures the way we like, keeps our hearts working at optimal functionality, and helps us to feel better about ourselves in general, all of which make getting older just a tiny bit easier to handle.
Do you have a story to share about a time you felt you had to "Return to You"? Leave me a comment and tell me about it; I love hearing about how other women are dealing with these issues.
And don't forget to check out Pfizer's Page on Blogher.com to read more blogger "Return to You" stories.