Stacey is such a fun, light hearted person with an infectious laugh! I had so much fun getting to know her during our makeover! She truly just radiates positivity and light! It is crazy how some people just make you feel happy... and Stacey is definitely one of them!
Life hasn't always been so light hearted for Stacey, as is the case for most people of course! Stacey story begins in High School.. She describes herself as being "morbidly Obese since I was a sophomore in High School. It was a VERY hard thing to deal with, I really never got asked out on dates, never went to prom or homecoming and felt very unattractive and frumpy. I tried to change my appearance by dying my hair, wearing clothes that didn’t draw attention and just kind of trying to blend in. I did not want anyone to notice me….because unfortunately when your noticed, as an Obese girl in High School its usually not in a nice way. I had a good group of friends, many of them also had weight problems."
"Fast forward to College, I was still Morbidly Obese but lived with a great roommate who helped me gain a bit of confidence and I started dating, 6 months later I got married. Had a baby the next year and had 2 more babies in the following 4 years. With each pregnancy and postpartum period I continued to gain weight. I was a stay at home mom who did daycare at my home and cleaned others homes on weekends to help make ends meet.
I was beginning to feel my weight start to really take a toll on what I could physically do. I could not play with the kids at the park, I could just sit and watch. I could not fit in the seats at the movie theatre anymore without squeezing in and then having large bruises on my hips for days afterward. I couldn’t walk around the block or go to the zoo or Lagoon with my kids. Physically it was just too painful on my knees and lower back to walk around for more then 5-10 minutes at a time."
(How Ironic that we chose to use this same dress for this shoot!)
I think that this is such a scary and great step for some people! She should be very proud!
"By January of 2014 I weighed 399.8 lbs. I could not do much of anything. I went to work in the mornings and by the time I got home around 1, I was physically exhausted. I would sit on the couch the rest of the day and watch TV. My back hurt ALL THE TIME! I had Sleep Apnea and was Pre-diabetic. I was on Acid Reducers and High Blood Pressure Meds. I could see myself dying if I didn’t get help.
I had my Surgical Consultation in January and had Surgery in March of 2014. My Insurance would not cover the cost of the surgery so I had to pay for it upfront by taking out a loan for $20,000 (it will be paid off in 3 years!) I have lost 204.8 lbs. I have maintained my new weight for over a year now and Love my new life. My Sleep Apnea is GONE, High Blood Pressure is GONE, Pre-diabetes is GONE! Acid reflux Meds are GONE!"
Stacey went on to say, "I wish more people were not so ashamed or embarrassed to consider weight loss surgery. It is definitely NOT the easy way out most people seem to think. And I’ll admit, I was one of them for Many, Many years. I always thought I could do it on my own, I thought if I couldn’t do it on my own I was a huge failure. I tried every diet & program under the sun. Failed at all of them! Weight loss surgery helped me succeed but it didn’t do it for me. I followed a very strict diet for 12 months following surgery. I can never drink soda pop again…EVER! There are a lot of things in my life I had to change. Emotionally it is a roller coaster…No more food for comfort, celebrations or anxiety relief & stress eating is definitely out the window! I needed to learn all new coping skills since food had been my go to for everything! Not an easy road, but definitely worth it!"
I completely agree with what Stacey has said...weight loss surgery is nothing to be ashamed about! So many people are...But it is a big and scary step to take. I agree it is not for everyone, but no one can dispute the way this has changed Stacey's life. Looking at her Before and After pictures says it all! In Stacey's application she said that she loves the Old Hollywood style and Kat Von D (which I totally loved). I wanted to go with that and also make her feel sultry and desirable since she had said how she never felt those things from a young age! Although I think that any woman can be those things at any size! NO ONE will ever be able to convince you of this unless you feel it yourself. As we started into he shoot I definitely wanted to show the happy and light feeling she gives! So we moved the shoot to a different area.. I ADORE THESE IMAGES! She is breathtaking!
Stacey has a bit of an edge to her that I love too! She spouts off funny little comments that are just spunky! I can tell that she is always up for anything and feel her excitement for life! She adores her family and loves her husband very much. I just think these photo really showcase All that Stacey is!
One last photo is the one where I challenged myself a bit! I got a new camera and am getting to know better! I have been playing with the focus and light! So here is one a little different for me!
I hope we can all learn to love ourselves a little more and see that we all have value! Sometimes this is the hardest thing in the world! I COMPLETELY understand believe me! I am probably one of the worst people about this. Stacey and I talked about how a lot of people don't really discover their talent or what makes them the most happy until about 30! Yep that is me! I am still working on this as well.. but as long as we all band together and refuse to be too negative...empower each other through our words AND actions! It helps ourselves more than the other person. Give Stacey some love in the comments below or on Facebook! Like, Comment, Share!!