Hatfield mum loses over 17st after being told she might not see her daughter grow up
PUBLISHED: 13:03 31 May 2017 | UPDATED: 13:03 31 May 2017
A Hatfield mother who was warned by doctors that she wouldn't live to see her daughter grow up unless she lost weight has shed 17st 4lbs and discovered a new zest for life.
Ceri Knight, 46, of Hatfield, had been overweight for most of her life but received a stark wake-up call when she realised she might not be around long enough to see her daughter Macy, five, grow up.
At a dress size 34 and weighing 31st 11½lbs, Ceri felt as though she was ‘existing’ rather than living her life to the fullest.
The mother said: “At my biggest, I felt embarrassed, lonely and scared.
“The most terrifying thing by far though was the realisation that I might not be there for my daughter if I carried on down the same road.
“I was told I might have as little as two years to live if I didn’t make a change.”
Before losing the weight, even day-to-day living, from playing with her daughter to walking short distances or bending down to tie her shoelaces, was a struggle.
Her job as a nanny meant that she was on her feet for much of the day, and she felt that people were questioning her ability to look after children because of her size.
Her weight was also affecting her health and she began to suffer from sleep apnoea, an obesity-related condition that stopped her from breathing as she slept.
She said: “Everything is difficult when you’re overweight to that extent.
“I remember once I was on a plane waiting to go on holiday. I couldn’t get into the seat I’d been given so I had to stand and wait while the air hostess went to see if there was another seat big enough for me.
“The whole plane must have known what was happening and the whole experience was just so humiliating.
“It took a lot for me to walk through the doors of my Slimming World group, especially because I’d tried and failed to lose weight so many times before.
“There was no reason to be scared though, my group is like one big family.
“The other members are always right beside you, walking the journey with you, whether it’s celebrating the highs or overcoming the lows.”
Since joining Slimming World in January 2014 Ceri has lost 17st 4lbs and now wears a dress size 14.
She added: “I’m a completely different person now. I’m healthy, full of confidence and much more active.
“I go to the gym and love going to theme parks, which is something I simply wouldn’t have been able to do when I was bigger because the safety bars just wouldn’t have fit over me.
“I love dancing too, so any opportunity I get I’m on the dancefloor.”
Discovering a love of cooking from scratch and including plenty of fruit and veg into her diet was another turning point for Ceri.
She said: “The eating plan is so flexible that it just becomes a way of life.
“Before I’d graze all day and now I enjoy three healthy, filling meals. And I love that Macy can enjoy the same meals too.
“I still enjoy my favourite egg, chips and beans – it’s just cooked the Slimming World way.
“At one point I was scared of dying before my time – and now I squeeze every second out of every day. I never knew life could be so much fun.”
Ceri came 2nd at the Slimming World Greatest Loser 2017 Awards in London on Tuesday, May 16, 2017.