Hi, thank you for reading my blog my dear friend!
Let me show you who I am.
My name is Yvonne van Dalen. I am 43 years old and I live with my boyfriend and our two kids in The Netherlands. I am a newborn photographer and photographers coach and I have embarked on a journey to find my authentic self, go through a physical and mental transformation by loosing weight without dieting and just having a healthy lifestyle. In short, I wish get to the point where I look and feel like a million bucks! Hence the title of this blog.
But why do I document my weight-loss journey and share it online?
I think I will do better by having you, the reader and viewer, as an accountability partner. And by sharing I hope to inspire others to embark on the same journey. Sharing is caring! And therefore this journey is not just about little old me, but my deep desire to help and inspire and help people around me grow as well, and making this world a better place for us and the generations after us. I hope by leading by example my children will grow up healthy and happy so they can live their best lives.
Why do I go on this journey of getting healthier?
For as long as I can remember I've had a bad relationship with my body and with food. From the time I went to college and I moved out of the house my weight went up and down like a jojo and has varied from a healthy weight as an adult between 63-75 kilo and 118 kilo at the peak of my pregnancies. Right now my go-to weight lies around 105 kilograms. And with my height of 1.75m that is way too much for me to feel healthy.
I've tried out literally EVERYTHING there is to loose weight, but I've never been able to keep it off.
My methods went from healthy eating, exercising, over-exercising, Atkins diet, Hospital diet, HCG hormone diet, Total Body Balance diet, Ketogenic diet, leek soup diet, 1000 calorie diet, the pineapple diet, intermittent fasting, shakes and proteins drinks, paleo diet, vegan diet, vegetarian diet, hypnosis, acupuncture, diet pills, stackers, psychotherapy, not eating, binge eating, laxating, purging, juicing, no carbs, no sugar, no fat, smoking, heat cabins, clingfilm wrapping my 'fat zones', sweat suits, creams, gels... The list goes on endlessly. I've even had liposuction on my legs, thighs, belly, back and arms. You name it, and I've tried it. And all of those methods never offered me the permanent solution to health. These were only very EXPENSIVE and UNHEALTHY detours, after which I always saw the weight I lost come back on (plus a few kilos extra after each diet method). I've spent tons of time, money, attention on my weight and my body. Hours and days of frustration, being unhappy, comparing myself to what I didn't have, and couldn't achieve. I felt ugly and alone. All. The. Time.
I knew, with all the weight-loss methods I tried out, I ignored one thing.
I never looked inward to find my inner strength. I've always looked elsewhere for the solution. I've never worked on really loving myself. I've been through very bad situations of verbal and physical abuse, and grew up around lots of situations filled with stress and tension, fighting and struggling, threats, dishonesty, disrespect, violence and aggression, in short: a lot of bad stuff happened around me when I was young. Once I grew up, I didn't know how to love and respect myself. I've always lived in a state of nervousness, being afraid and feeling stressed. Feeling not good enough. Feeling ugly.
My natural self esteem was layered with a negative mindset that always set me up for failure.
I attracted the dishonest, disrespectful and distrustful boyfriends and relationships that were bad for me. I used sex as a way of getting attention, punishing myself, and I gave away my soul and true self. Never standing up for myself or what I wanted. I was completely lost and had no sense of value or destination. I went through severe depression, after years of abuse and letting myself being abused. I turned to drugs, alcohol, food, shopping, overspending, and wore myself out. I was never able to really enjoy who I was and what my life had to offer. I acted extravert, when all I really am is an introvert. Or I closed down, shut the outside world off, and turned inwards. Always making excuses, alienating my friends and family, making up excuses for why I couldn't make it to an appointment. I couldn't break the cycle. And I nearly drove myself into bankruptcy with a USD 33,000 tax debt.
I can write a whole book about my life, but let's talk about now.
Right now, years later, I'm in a way better state of mind and I feel calmer, and loving towards myself and I accept my responsibility for my own life design and the daily actions I can carry out. I've went through loads of psychotherapy, group therapy, and dreambuilding and I am ready to move forward and change my story. I am ready to come FROM my dream, instead of living TOWARDS my dream.
I will tell you more about my life on another occasion. Maybe I will write that book. 😉 Right now, I quickly want to give you this photo tour of who I am, what my weight issues have looked liked and what I looked like at a healthy weight. These photos date from 2006 up until now, 2018. I can hardly recognize myself in some pictures.
What I want to focus on right now, is how I feel during my journey of transformation.
During the entire journey of living from my own HOW and WHY, I want to find a healthy way of living. No dieting. No resctrictions. No shoulds or musts. No over-exercising or punishing my body. No down-talking and striving to be perfect. Just accepting in what steps I can take each and every day. I want to lovingly live myself towards my highest goals: internal and external health and a continuous level of energy. A life without feeling lethargic, without headache, skin rashes, random aches and pains, inactivity and an overall feeling of missing out on my life.
Are you ready to join me?
I would love to hear from you and your adventures.
Bye bye, xo Yvonne
Scale: from 103,1 to 102,7 kg. Date April 6, 2018.
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Check out my photo tour below.