Welcome to Lindsey Marks' Personal Page!
On Sat., Oct. 14, 2017, I will be a VIRTUAL participant in the second annual Strides for Obesity event in Halifax, Nova Scotia.
Please help me reach my goal. Thank you for your support!
We all have a Story - Here's mine
I was a skinny, even underweight kid while growing up in Ontario. Married at 20 (140 lbs) to my high school sweetheart, it turned into an abusive situation. Instead of taking up jogging (oh, how I wish I had, but it wasn't a "thing" back then) I retreated into myself and ate while I watched tv. The marriage ended and I focussed on my work, the weight creeping up to over 200. I had bouts of depression and on the drive home would routinely stop in to one of several corner stores to buy my treats, usually a bag of salty snacks and another of cookies. I went through those very quickly, which of course packed on the pounds (235 lbs). During those years I'd try every new diet with some success, but it never stayed off.
After camping across Canada, I arrived in Vancouver and loved it. I moved there and spent time walking in Stanley Park, eating better including a lot of seafood, and ultimately got back under the 200 lb mark. I also found love and after marrying and having a baby, the weight - plus more - was back on. A few years later I spent three months with my Mom as cancer slowly and painfully took her. I found comfort in food and I packed on more weight (280). Then my Dad passed - more weight. By the time the second rocky marriage was over and several bouts of depression passed, it was 2003 and I was at my highest of 375 lbs.
I tried again, and over 16 months I lost 83 lbs to get me back under the 300 lb mark. Once I hit that number, I thought I had made it! Why would I ever want to be that heavy again? I was focussing on healthy eating and started walking at lot. On July 1, I went for a 3 km walk and enjoyed a wonderful Canada Day festival. When I got home, my hip hurt so bad that I was bedridden for several days. Diagnosed with osteoarthritis, I had to reduce the amount of walking, then got depressed because I felt that after all my hard work losing weight and being active, I was rewarded with pain, so started into the comfort eating again. The weight crept up, and by late 2008 I was at 360 lbs.
Then came the scariest year of my life - 2011. The night before my 59th birthday, I was rushed to hospital with severe pancreatitis. I spent the next several days hooked up to an IV fighting the infection just to get stable enough to undergo an operation. On Easter Sunday they removed my gall bladder and the stones that were blocking the bile duct. I didn't realize it at the time, but I was very close to death. I had a hard time recovering my strength and stamina after that and never went back to work. I even cut short a much anticipated month-long vacation because I just wasn't well enough to have any fun.
The flight home was so uncomfortable, that I decided I'd had enough and I'd try once more to get into shape. With the doctor's permission, I started a lifestyle-type program at a gym and went 4 days a week for fitness classes plus a weekly seminar on nutrition and life style. Over the next few months I could feel some real progress in my strength and stamina. Then I seemed to go backward, getting out of breath doing things I could do easily just a couple of weeks before. Finally it got so bad that I had to stop and rest after about 20 steps. My sister came to visit and immediately took me to the hospital. Here we go again. This time it was pulmonary embolii - I had blood clots in both of my lungs and could have dropped dead at any moment.
After that second scare, I just stayed home. I was partially scared that I'd jostle something and a 3rd brush with death might be the last one, and partially feeling that I was being punished every time I started to do something active. Fortunately, my weight had stabilized and I stayed in the 360 lb range, where I've stayed ever since. Since I was an introvert who craved solitude, I was quite happy being a hermit and it was months between ventures outside, since it was quite a painful ordeal.
Then in 2016 I got a fabulous Christmas present - I was going to be a Grandma! In the spring my daughter and her boyfriend started looking for a larger place to rent and just casually I threw out the idea that maybe they could find a house with a granny suite so I could live with them and help pay the rent and maybe help out with the baby. To my surprise and delight she got right on it, found a place and I had 2 weeks to pack all my stuff up and move - thank goodness for a wonderful friend who did all the packing! I love my new place and for five months everything was smooth sailing. I started going for short walks trying to build up my stamina and was able to stand for a little longer. But I still wasn't making much progress getting stronger, and got winded just walking to the bathroom.
In August I got the news that my shortness of breath was due to a heart condition, and no amount of pushing myself was going to change that, and in fact could be dangerous. So then I was advised to keep moving as best I can without over exerting myself. Now I understood why years ago at 360 lbs I could work full time, go grocery shopping and take walks around the neighbourhood but now, at the same weight, I needed a walker to move around my apartment.
In early September my sweet granddaughter was born! Hurray! I'm overjoyed and being so close to this little family I get to hold her and cuddle her regularly.
I stumbled upon the Strides for Obesity site and got encouraged to start walking again. For the Strides for Obesity virtual walk I'll take a stroll down the street and try to go a little bit farther than I have gone so far, my goal being to get to the community mailbox. I'll take my time, rest if I need to, and keep my eye on the prize. While I'm doing that, I'll be thinking of my fellow virtual walkers and everyone in Halifax who will have completed their walk already, since it'll be at 7 am west coast time when you start and I will only get up that early for my grandbaby!
If you think this page contains objectionable content, please inform the system administrator.