The doctor sat in front of me, his face stern. `You need to lose two stone in six months to have this operation,' he explained. `You're overweight, and that will increase the risks involved with anesthetic.'
How to Lose Weight in Your Face
I looked at him in amazement. I knew I wasn't thin, but it had never crossed my mind that I was obese.
It was December 2002 and I was trying to get a date for a varicose vein operation. The problem was, without losing the weight, it was far too dangerous.
I'd never had a problem with my weight until I had my first baby, Benjamin, now 10, with my engineer husband David, 34.
My size was the last thing on my mind as I started to care for a baby, and I quickly slipped into bad eating habits. By the time my second baby, Jake, now three, came along, I'd gone from a size 12 to a size 26.
I didn't even know how much I weighed and, back then, I don't think I even really cared. `I'd look silly thinner,' I'd argue with myself. At 5ft 11ins, I was tall and I thought I carried my weight well.
The only time I worried about my size was on special occasions or nights out with my friends. They'd wear skimpy tops and short skirts, while I'd throw on wide-leg trousers and a huge blouse over my 42F boobs. I thought it was flattering, but I should have realized that it just made me look bigger.
It wasn't that I ate a lot, but what I did eat was pure rubbish. I'd always skip breakfast, then I'd grab a sausage roll or pie for lunch. When I went on the school run, I'd take some chocolate and crisps to snack on. Then back at home in Tipton, West Midlands, I'd nibble on biscuits while I cooked the family dinner - usually, a roast smothered in gravy. It wasn't the meals I was interested in, I just loved to snack.