Monday, November 26, 2012


March 31, 2012

I love this photo, for so many reasons.  I hadn’t seen these ladies in quite a while, and I had missed them.  It was the only night all of our schedules aligned (one of us still couldn’t make it) and they surprised me with an early birthday cake!  We enjoyed pizza, drinks, cake and catching up.  It was such a fun night!!
It was also the night I weighed the most I ever weighed in my life.

So, why do I love the photo?  As I said, there are so many reasons.  These are three of my favorite people.  They are strong women I enjoy and admire.  They are also funny as all get out!  We met because our kids were all involved in high school theatre together.  We became friends because… well, because we just did. 
Our kids were mildy amused when we started making plans together without them.  One of them commented to my daughter, “Do you know our moms are making plans to hang out without us?  It’s like Mom Camp or something.”  The name has stuck.  We’ve seen each other thru sending our kids off to college, for some of us our oldest, others the youngest.  We have met at this pizza place to celebrate after shows, and on a couple of occasions, to have a drink after one of us got a(nother) tattoo!  I have enjoyed getting to know each of them, and treasure their friendship.  
I also love that they surprised me.  I love surprises, and I love chocolate cake, so when the surprise IS chocolate cake, that’s everything.  I love that we’re all smiling and that you can see we were having a great time.  I love that they all have beer and I have wine.  (I’m really not a beer drinker.)  I love the top I’m wearing.  I love that Michelle Obama has the same one (in a smaller size, no doubt!)  I love that the candles on the cake say “39” because my friends know that age is just a number.  And I love that, as big as I was, I was happy!  Not “life is perfect” happy, but more “I have all these amazing people in my life” happy… really, truly happy.  Happy with my friends, happy with my situation, however imperfect, and happy with myself.  Because I believe I had to be there that night in order to get to where I am today. 

But what I love most about this photo is what you can’t see -- the person behind the camera, my daughter. She is the most amazing person, full of energy and drive, one of the hardest working people you’ll ever meet.  She knows no fear, only the challenge of going for whatever she wants. On the way home that night, she said, “Let’s go to the gym tomorrow.”  Thinking about the numbers I had seen on the scale that morning, I said, “sure, let’s go!”  And so we went.  It was great.  It felt good to get moving and fun to do it together.  And when we were done, she said, “let’s try and go every day this month.”  And so we did.  Most days we both went, but she is also a dancer and is in classes or teaching classes every night from about 4-9pm, so some nights she couldn’t make it.  But she got me started, and cheered me on so that even if she couldn’t go, I didn’t want to miss.  She inspired me to start working out, and to keep working out.  And eight months later, I’ve lost 48 lbs. and she is still my favorite cheerleader!

It’s still hard for me to look back at old photos and see where I was.  When I started this journey, I didn’t take a “before” picture.  I probably didn’t want to jinx myself.  I never thought about where I’d end up, I was always just looking at the next step.   But when someone asked, I remembered we had taken a photo that night.   I’m really glad this is my “before” photo, no mirror shot of me in unflattering gym clothes with a sad look on my face.  For me, I could have never taken that first step from a place of self-loathing.  I know now, it had to be from a place of happiness, a place of love, and a place where my best cheerleader was right there to capture the moment.  I am grateful for her every day.  
November 24, 2012


  1. This is really fabulous Lauren. So happy for you! You are an inspiration to me and many <3

  2. Excellent article. And I agree with Denise. You are an inspiration!

  3. So inspiring! I love that your journey starts in such a happy place! That makes me happy. You go, girl!

  4. Fantastic reasons for loving your photo! I just found your inspiring blog, and decided to read all of it in one sitting starting with this, your first post.

    1. @hush, I just saw your comment... thank you so much for your kind words. <3