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Melissa’s Story

Melissa Banner

Melissa has lost 32KG!!

Growing up I was a happy child and had the most amazingly supportive and loving parents. I excelled at and had many friends. My dad then found a great job but this required him to move around to where the company needed him. So, my early school memories consist of moving from place to place all over the country. By the time I finally went to high school, I had been in 9 different primary schools. As much as my childhood was happy and full of love and support, I wasn’t coping emotionally or mentally with all the changes. So my parents made the decision to leave me with my grandparents to have some stability while they relocated to another city. My memories of these few years are only happy ones and they became and still are my second mom and dad. They gave me so much love and support, that I started to find my feet again. 
 
Then came the time for me to join my family again in yet another school and even though I did well in school, I wasn’t happy. I kept having to make new friends over and over and eventually either stopped wanting to as I was always wondering when I would be leaving again or because I lost the ability to trust or bond with someone properly. 
 
 
My earliest memories of food had always been pleasant and I wouldn’t overdo anything. However, as time went on, I became a comfort eater. Food became my emotional escape. All I can remember doing with my pocket money was going to McDonald’s after school with my one friend I managed to make and have a McChicken Meal for lunch. This became my new routine and I thought it was helping me emotionally. It was either McDonald’s meals or lots and lots of bread- snackwiches mostly. I wasn’t as happy as I thought or pretended to be. 
 I also fell into the wrong crowd and started smoking and drinking at the age of 12!! I had an extremely traumatic experience at the age of 12 and this is where my unraveling truly began. I’ve never even told my parents. I blamed myself for it happening. I felt ashamed. I can’t remember how much weight I picked up after that, but it was significant. 
 
We then moved to a farm in a small town and this is where my mind truly came undone. I went through the most horrible spiritual experience and I spiraled into a deep depression. Smoking and cutting became my new way of life. I moved from food to those two as an emotional escape. But the more I cut, the more unhappy I was, the more I cut. It got to the point where my parents finally decided I needed spiritual help, not psychological anymore. I found the Lord in 2004 and I was finally filled with happiness again and the cutting stopped. 
 
We left the farm and moved to a city. By this time, I was 16. I made the decision to repeat grade 10 due to all the emotional issues and being out of school for most of the year. I never told anyone that at the new school as I was their age and I still didn’t trust easily. 
My memories of high school are very unpleasant as I was bullied relentlessly for being ‘different’. This is where my mind cracked again and I strayed away from the Lord. I was smoking, drinking and doing other things I’m not proud of. I was very negative about myself and wouldn’t see myself as being worthy of happiness or to be taken care of. I was so scared of putting on anymore weight as I was already being tormented. So I would hardly eat but excessively smoke and drink. 
 
I started dating my now husband at the age of 18 and matriculated with exemption and I weighed 58kg. I had lost significantly because of the ugly words from high school. But once I moved in with him at 21, I started to eat properly again but because we didn’t have much money, we would eat cheaper foods and junk foods. I went from eating a small meal to an XL meal. This became my new normal again and before I knew it, by the time I got married, I was weighing 70kg. I fell pregnant with my son and picked up a whopping 15kg!! When he was born, I weighed 85kg. I then tried everything to lose the weight quickly- pills, shakes, fad diets etc but nothing worked for me. I was miserable!! That’s when the emotional eating started again. I ate my feelings with McDonald’s and when I gave birth to my daughter I was now weighing 95kg!! 
 
I started having some health issues and the doctor told me that if I didn’t make some serious changes, I was going to have a heart attack and possibly die at a young age as my blood pressure was sky high and I had to be on beta blockers. I decided then and there that this was ENOUGH! I had to make some changes as I had a husband and two small children who needed their mother and wife. But I was clueless as to what to do. I didn’t have thousands to spend on products etc. 
 
I saw Carolyn’s posts about her journey on Lifeline and I thought I would chat to her and find out more. It still took me 3 months and her convincing to finally make the decision that Lifeline would be the only programme I’d ever need.

I was going to have a heart attack and possibly die at a young age as my blood pressure was sky high and I had to be on beta blockers. I decided then and there that this was ENOUGH!

I started my journey in February 2018 with the goal of reaching 65kg by my 30th birthday in April 2019. I was determined to lose 30kg! I wanted to feel sexy again and desired and content with myself. I bought myself a small dress as motivation to fit into and I started. It wasn’t easy but it was so worth it! I reached my goal on the 11 of April 2019- a whole week before my original date! I was 65kg!!! But, I kept going and working hard and beat that goal and on the 18th, I was 63kg! 
 
Lifeline not only transformed me physically but they taught me to love myself completely and how one can be in a good relationship with food. I don’t see food or myself as the enemy anymore. I have found healthier alternatives to cope with emotional stress. I looked so good on my birthday and the compliments I received, made this whole process so so worth it. This is the only programme you’ll ever need! It works if you trust the process and stick to it and your goals. You are important and worthy to feel good in your skin! You only have one body, so take care of it and see the transformation change you physically, mentally and emotionally. 
 
Thank you Lifeline and Tammy. I’m so grateful for you! I will continue this new way of life (the lifeline way) everyday. You helped me find my happiness again.
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