So I have been working on this site for about 4 months now and am loving it. I have really enjoyed putting up recipes and writing articles and seeing what you are all doing to change your health and those around you! It has kept me motivated on my own journey.
There is a ‘Who I Am’ page on my site which really does capture who I am but I wanted to open up and share the whole me and the struggles I have been through in the hope that this helps you to see how changes can be made to totally change your life.
Being an overweight teenager, life was hard! Highschool sucked because I was always one of the biggest girls and I hated school camps. I never wanted to stand out and did my best to hang in the background. This has unfortunately been playing in my mind for my whole life and feel that I have kept a little extra padding ever since so that I don’t stand out.
I got sick at the end of highschool and lost a lot of weight. This transformed me as I felt as though my cover was melting away. I wanted to stand out just a little bit more and I had amazing dreams for my future. I went and studied a Marketing degree which is what I felt I should do. I convinced myself that I enjoyed it but deep down I knew I didn’t. Some family stuff happened and I knew I had to get away and start living my own life.
So I did what a lot of 20 year olds do. I travelled overseas and ended up living there for a while. I lived in Cambridge (UK) for over a year where I worked and explored the world. It was absolutely amazing! I fell in love and gained a lot of weight. I travelled the Greek Islands and visited Banff in Canada. I was living the dream. I loved it.
After a while I wanted to come home to see my family and friends. I knew I didn’t want to go back to the same life I had left. While I was over there I spoke with many interesting people and I began to understand myself and trust myself. I knew deep down that I wanted to be a teacher which I had wanted for as long as I can remember. The thing that stopped me before was some people saying ‘You’ll never make much money as a teacher’. Now I realised that living my passion was more important than money.
2 days after arriving back home I was starting my Education degree. I was loving it and glad to have finally trusted myself. Within a few weeks I received some news that floored me. My mum was diagnosed with terminal Lung Cancer. I felt as though my life was crashing down and part of me thought this was punishment for being so happy the last year. My mum and I had never had a great relationship but it had dramatically improved while I was overseas and we spoke several times a week via Skype.
To be perfectly honest the next 9 months was such a blur. I moved between emotions of anger, hatred, depression, inspiration, and confusion. My grandfather had died a couple of years beforehand from cancer and my aunty had lung cancer and was in remission. It seemed everywhere. I didn’t know how to support mum and get through this myself. There were many moments throughout her last few months that I felt guilty about not being more supportive or being more understanding of how she was feeling. I have only now started to forgive myself for those times (5 years on) and have realised that mum would never want me to beat myself up about how I dealt with it. This realisation only truly came since having children of my own.
Not long after mum passed away I moved in with my boyfriend and we got engaged and married within the year. We moved about an hour away for work and started our new lives. He had a great job and I scored an amazing teaching job within a prestigious Brisbane school. I thought it was great. Within a few weeks of starting I was throwing up on my way to work and was gaining weight. The pressure to be there all hours working was too much. On top of travelling 50 minutes each way through Brisbane traffic I had to resign. I couldn’t cope and we were trying for a baby and my body was not interested!
I continued teaching by doing supply work and contracts which suited me beautifully. I then fell pregnant. Within a month of finding out I was pregnant my husband lost his job. We searched high and low for him but there just wasn’t anything available. We eventually came across an opportunity to run our own business. We were so excited. We put everything into the business to make it a success as our plan was for hubby to work and for me to stay at home with our baby.
Things were going well until it started raining. I forgot to mention we had a tennis centre. The rain started in the summer of 2010. If you know anything about tennis you know that summer is the peak season to make enough money to get you through the slower winter. It rained and rained. It rained so much that Brisbane actually flooded in January 2011. Although most of the actual property was not flooded all of our customers were. This meant that our plan for a good summer was literally washed away and with our customers flooded and losing their jobs we had very few sign up for the new year of coaching.
With figures coming in much lower than expected as early as December I knew I had to go back to work. Since I am a teacher I only had a short window to apply before the new school year. I applied for a few jobs and was fortunate to get my dream job at a Kindergarten I loved. It was hard going back to work and putting my 4 month old in daycare but it had to be done.
After the flood we had to get a solicitor to get us out of the management contract before we went broke. This took a massive toll on me and I was exhausted. I barely enjoyed this whole first bit of time with my gorgeous son. I was angry and gained more weight! (can you see the pattern!).
Once we got out of the business my husband didn’t have a job and since most of Brisbane was out of a job there was a lot of competition! We decided it would be best for him to go back to uni and get his Teaching degree which had been his dream for a while. This did mean I had to work full time. More stress added.
By the middle of the year I was diagnosed with depression and had couldn’t find the joy in my life anymore. While speaking with my psychologist we spoke about all the things that had gone wrong. She then asked me one day “What do you like to do?”. I honestly didn’t even know how to answer. I had spent the first year of my sons life trying to close a business, get a new job and work out how to be a mother. I put so much pressure on myself to be perfect and my body couldn’t handle it all. I didn’t even stop to listen to her (my body).
My husband finally finished uni and I quit my second job but I still felt like I was stuck in this awful cycle. I started to go for a walk in the morning which was something I had loved doing from a young age. This then progressed up to jogging and coming home to eat a healthy breakfast. Things really started looking up from there. What changed?
I put myself first!
This may be a foreign concept to mothers but since putting myself first I have become an even better mother, wife, friend and person. I am still on this journey but this was the start of being truly happy.
As things were looking up we found out that my dads partner also has lung cancer. What are the odds of that?!? She was told that she wouldn’t see my second son born but she has and she is still here. Chemotherapy hasn’t worked and I’m so proud to hear that she is now focusing on changing her healthy habits and listening to her body about what it needs. She is certainly determined.
Things have been up and down and we have recently moved back to my home town of the Sunshine Coast which has been amazing. I have also had my second gorgeous son, started this website, wrote my first book and am living the life of my dreams. I’m still working hard at this site and look forward to it being my main source of income as I continue to spread my message of healthy living and inspiring parents and teachers to live their dream life.
My strong focus is on food and meditation techniques which I have found to be the biggest challenges of my life and since making some great habit changes my whole life has shifted.
The best part of starting this site has been seeing mothers sending in pictures of their children drinking a green smoothie or seeing teachers sharing around my resources to their colleagues to make awesome changes. I just love that!
This has certainly been a long post but I have felt that I really wanted to put it out there. My story. My passion. Now I want to share my vision.
Yesterday after my afternoon meditation as my boys slept beside me I realised that this is my time and I am ready for it. I know that I am here to make a difference and look forward to finally standing out! I’m no longer scared of criticism or chatting with people who have different beliefs to me. I’m no longer worried about what people think of me. This is me!
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