I originally joined Jenny Craig back in spring of 2010. I liked the food and how easy it was to follow, and I really enjoyed talking to my counselor. Very quickly, I was starting to see some happy results. Shortly after having joined, however, my world turned upside down when my husband and I separated. My counselor was wonderful - she would often just shut the door to her office and let me cry for a few minutes before talking. I was a mess and crying all the time back then. After she let me get it out, she would gently emphasize how much I needed structure, and that sticking to a food plan would help anchor me while there was so much upheaval in my life. That is really all I remember her saying.
All of that is pretty much a blur in my mind because I was very depressed and caught up in the emotional issues surrounding the crumbling of my marriage. I was seeing a therapist and was on anti-depressants. My commitment to the JC program fluctuated over the next year. I would try for a few weeks and then struggle, indulge, and try again. I don't think I ever really followed it properly - I remember just eating the JC meals and rarely supplementing them with fruits and veggies - I don't know why I did it that way and thought it would work. I believe I came in with a goal to lose about 85-90 lbs. Eventually I lost around 15 or 18 lbs., I can't remember exactly, but just couldn't do it anymore. I was depressed, unemployed, broke, and feeling completely lost. I had to focus on finding a job and avoiding getting evicted from my apartment, while also dealing with my divorce.
So, I don't remember how long I had stayed away from JC, probably a little over two years. I had been dealing with so much in that time, it was like a roller-coaster ride. I had been seeing this great guy for about a year and a half, but nothing was happening with my divorce. My husband and I had tried mediation, but it did not work out and we were not communicating anymore. I had no money, literally, and almost got evicted. At the 11th hour, it seemed, I got a job.
Even though it was only part-time, my new job made a huge difference in my life - I liked working there, had somewhere to go, a little more structure, and was meeting people and making some money. I even lost a little more weight because I was now more active (on my feet all day at work, with a flight of stairs I have to climb several times throughout the day), and then I was asked to go full-time, which I really wanted. Then the guy I was seeing suddenly broke up with me and that rejection stirred up all those feelings of loss I'd experienced when my husband moved out. Ugh. Soon after that, my husband was in touch again, trying to move our divorce proceedings along. We are more friendly now, but trying to agree on terms was stressful! I did say roller-coaster ride, right?
Strangely enough, I kept running into my former JC counselor not only in my neighborhood (she lives near me), but in various places around town, and at the oddest moments. She had moved on and is no longer working for JC anymore, but it was like a reminder popping up every now and then which made me think about joining again. I'd always intended to get back to Jenny. Finally, I felt I'd had enough with being fat and so I did join again this past November. I made the choice to do it online because I work into the evenings and now have had very little time to schedule consultations. I'm not a morning person, so going before work would make me crazy. Plus with my old counselor gone, and all the memories of crying in that office, I just wanted to do it differently.
I was gung-ho for the first two weeks, and lost about 4 lbs, but I really don't think I was quite ready. I still had to deal with occasional bouts of depression (though, thankfully, I am not on anti-depressants anymore) and I had a very busy schedule over the holidays and let things slide a bit. Plus it's been so bone-chillingly cold this winter, I just wanted to stay indoors and feed my face! Just before the new year, I was promoted to a management position, and now had more responsibilities and a bigger paycheck. I started eating out more often and indulging in alcohol, to "celebrate." I wasn't buying the JC food anymore, and began gaining weight again. Ugh, not heading in the right direction! What really got to me was this pair of jeans I really like, suddenly being tight on me. I had bought them a few months earlier while I was losing weight and had imagined myself needing to take them in at some point. They are a size 18. So, it killed me when I pulled them on and had a muffin top! It was hard to button them and that made me mad.
So, this week, I re-committed myself. It just sort of happened without premeditation - I bought the food, stocked up on fruits & veggies, started reading and re-reading the literature I still have, and planned menus for the coming week. I can't believe that I never really familiarized myself with all the things we are allowed to eat (ie., the "limited free foods"), and maybe that's why I was struggling for so long. I am feeling much better already, after just a couple of days. My job is good, my divorce is getting closer to being finalized, and my STBX and I are actually on more friendly terms with each other. As of today, I have 67 lbs to lose in order to reach my goal weight. This time I feel like I know I will get there, I don't know why. But crikey, it's about time.