July 29, 2013 in Uncategorized

5 years ago, I was a teacher in the classroom

I taught English to middle school students

And it was VERY hard

You have to stand up a lot when you teach

There was an incline that led from my building

To the main office

Every day was hard

I remember the first day of school

I came home exhausted

I hadn’t been used to being on my feet all day

And my thighs rubbing together had all but torn

All the skin off

I had a terrible heat rash and burn

I literally came home and laid on my bed

Dousing myself in baby powder

Laying under the ceiling fan trying to survive

Wondering how I would get up the next day and do it again

Somehow I made it through the whole year

But it was dreadfully difficult

I loved my job

But physically it was too much

I can remember various times where I could barely breathe

I wondered if I had a heart problem

But really it was my weight

Back then I was over 300 pounds

But after I quit that job to work from home

I gained another 100 pounds

Working from home is not conducive to weight loss

Not when the refrigerator is always there

And no one is watching

I never thought I’d teach in the classroom again

But I lost my job last month

My job teaching online

Due to the new health care laws they passed

Rather than being forced to give us health insurance

They let us go

And I found myself in a quandry

What will I do now?

I had kept in touch with the principal of that school

And she offered me a job

A new adventure

And one that returns me to the classroom

This time teaching Journalism to middle and high school students

Something I haven’t done before

I’m nervous about it because it’s unfamiliar

I’ve never put a Yearbook together

But the principal always believed in me

When I weighed over 300 pounds

She was the ONLY person willing to hire me

And give me a chance

Here we are again

5 years later

And she’s giving me that chance again

Tomorrow I go to a conference to learn more

How to put a Yearbook together

How to mentor students in an area I’m unfamiliar with myself!!

But you know what thought comes to my mind

I could have never done this 2 years ago!

Going to a conference??

Tight spaces, meeting new people

I could never have handled that at 417

And teaching in the classroom again?

Being on my feet all day?

What a difference that will be 240 pounds later

This was me when I used to teach in the classroom



I was over 300 pounds

But not as big as I would get

Still it was hard on me

And I know that my life in the classroom will be much different now

Because this is me today



I’m excited about the fact

That I can give the kids in my classroom

More of my energy

I feel that I will be a better teacher than I was before

Because I simply don’t have the things holding me back

That I did before

The best part about this

Is that all of my kids will be able to attend the same school with me

And that makes me SO happy

I will have all my kids in one place

No need to pay for after school care

It’s going to be a big change

And I’m not going to lie

I’m nervous about the changes

But this is a new adventure

And I’m ready to take it on

I dreamed that one day I’d be able to handle

Teaching in the classroom again

And that day has arrived

It’s one more dream coming true

Since I’ve lost weight

It’s amazing how things change

When the weight comes off

Opportunities come your way

And instead of turning them down

You can say


I had no idea I would lose my job last week

And yet it happened

I never could have foreseen that happening

And yet it did

But because I’ve lost weight

I can now take advantage of the next opportunity

Obesity locks you in

It limits your life

And I’m grateful for every pound I’ve lost

Because it allows me to walk through new doors

To take advantage of every thing that comes my way

That’s something I must be grateful for

And something I always will be

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{ 43 comments… read them below or add one }

Samantha @ 24 to 30 July 29, 2013 at 12:52 am

Congratulations on your new position! Good luck – I’m sure you will do great!
Samantha @ 24 to 30 recently posted..Ripped In 30 Challenge and Running For MaggieMy Profile


Paula July 29, 2013 at 12:57 am

Congratulations on your new job! Amazing how you have been blog journaling for a couple of years and then… wait for it… GOD puts you in a job that you have already been doing! I think you will be awesome!!


Staci July 29, 2013 at 1:04 am

How exciting, Holly! I hope you love it. It’ll probably be the best yearbook the school’s ever had! πŸ™‚
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Michele Moore July 29, 2013 at 1:11 am

Good for you! From one teacher to another…I hope this year is better than you can even imagine at this moment!
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Elaine July 29, 2013 at 1:15 am

Congratulations to those lucky students!


Melissa @ Pass Go and Be Below July 29, 2013 at 1:18 am

I was a yearbook editor for 3 years in highschool and if you ever need any advice on that end – let me know! I’m more than willing to share my knowledge.

I’m so excited for you….this is a change that is going to open more doors. You go girl!
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Joanna July 29, 2013 at 1:20 am

Congratulations Holly! That is awesome!


Emmie July 29, 2013 at 1:45 am

Congratulations! When one door closes, another one opens – and usually it’s all for a great reason.
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Nancy July 29, 2013 at 1:51 am

I was a high school yearbook advisor for over 20 years, and from reading your posts, I don’t think you will have any difficulty with the new position. It is important to be organized and to have a plan for the book; the rest will fall into place. Have fun in your new assignment – you will do well.
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brittany July 29, 2013 at 2:03 am

But I lost my job last month My job teaching online Due to the new health care laws they passed Rather than being forced to give us health insurance They let us go

—— THIS IS A BLESSING IN DISGUISE. Do not work for a company that has such little disregard for its employees that it will not offer health insurance. Shame on them for being cheapskates and putting profit above people.


brittany July 29, 2013 at 2:05 am

Also congratulations because it sounds like this new position will be great for you and also very nice to have your kids in the same school. You’ll be great! πŸ™‚


Linda July 29, 2013 at 2:06 am

Congratulations on your new position Holly! You will succeed!!
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Losing The Rolls July 29, 2013 at 2:08 am

Congratulations Holly! Sorry you lost your online job, but it sounds like this one will be a great opportunity. Great things are on their way for you. Have a super week.
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Sheila July 29, 2013 at 2:45 am

Congratulations on the new job opportunity. You will be GREAT at it! Wait, does this mean you get to go shopping for new work clothes…SO FUN! Don’t forget to hit Goodwill, etc. you will likely find a lot in your size (or at least that is what I’ve found now that I’m the size of the average woman.) Wonderful new changes await you.
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Tracy July 29, 2013 at 2:59 am

How exciting. I am so proud of you and happy for you and your children!


Cindy July 29, 2013 at 3:00 am

Congratulations on your new position! Your students will be so blessed by you:)


Nicola July 29, 2013 at 9:27 am

Congratulations on your new job Holly, you’ll be fantastic and you’re looking great! Move forward with your head high and with lots of confidence, you can absolutely do this πŸ™‚


Christine July 29, 2013 at 11:39 am

How fortunate they are to have you. Congrats!
I left my job in November 2012 (after working there for 12 years) because I physically couldn’t do it anymore. Labored breathing, social anxiety, hardly able to walk, my weight was slowly killing me, one bite at a time. I decided that 2013 was my year to change things or I would die very soon.
I had my WLS on May 20th, weighing in at 423. I am about 10 weeks post op and have lost 78 pounds. I’ve got my life back!!


MandaPanda July 29, 2013 at 12:47 pm

I think you’re going to enjoy teaching more now and you’ll be a better teacher for it. I’m so glad you were able to find a job so quickly in these times too. I’m sure it’s a huge weight lifted. Hehe. See what I did there? I crack me up. πŸ™‚
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annamarie July 29, 2013 at 1:50 pm

Absolutely awesome. Congratulations on a new job, new adventure.

Always remember that God always opens a window when the door slams shut.
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sunnydaze July 29, 2013 at 2:14 pm

Congratulations on your new position! Everything is working out just as it’s supposed to be. Change is scary but it is almost always for the better. I’m so excited for you and this new stage in your life with your new body πŸ™‚


Linda Sherwood July 29, 2013 at 2:22 pm

My very first job teaching was teaching college journalism and advising the student newspaper. If you have any questions, feel free to contact me. πŸ™‚
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Heather C. July 29, 2013 at 2:24 pm

Wow Holly~ you got that new job in record time! Who does that? AMAZING. On the list of stressors, I know that losing a job is at the top. As a single parent, I’m sure that was amplified. For me, this ‘unknown’ and anxiety would be a sure fire reason to eat. I think you know better. No- I KNOW you know better :O) When I read the post, one of my first thoughts was “Holly will be wearing her ‘off the rack’ outfit!!” This school year you’ll likely be walking or jogging on the school’s track. Take a deep breath, thank God for the new blessing in your life, and enjoy the ride. I have as much faith in you as the one who hired you.


Kathy July 29, 2013 at 2:42 pm

I think in the end you will be glad you lost the on-line job, just like you are happy to have shed the pounds! I was yearning to read a post from you over the weekend. Thanks for writing, and sending something this morning!

You rock, you can do it, those kids will be blessed, and you inspire me. Thanks Holly! πŸ™‚



FeeIsMe2 July 29, 2013 at 2:57 pm

Congrats & Good Luck!


Pam July 29, 2013 at 4:22 pm

So happy for you–getting to teach in a classroom again! I trained as an elementary teacher, graduating with a B.S. back in 1974. I looked for a job at the time, even teacher-aided (now they call them para’s) for a year when I couldn’t get a local teaching job. I was hopeful the aide job would lead to a full-time teaching position, but it was not to be. And I was over 200 lbs. even back then. The teasing wasn’t too bad, but I knew as the years passed and I continued to gain weight, eventually reaching 328 lbs. and staying there for many years, that returning to the classroom would be impossible. Not only would I be unable to STAND that long, I would not be able to STAND the taunts and teasing from the kids due to my obesity. So I gave up the aide job, and spent 35 years as a secretary at the University here in town. It was not fulfilling, I was underpaid and bored, and always thought I would eventually get that elusive teaching job. I even used to dream that someone had given me a class to teach and I would wake up so excited until I realized it was a dream. Then one day I realized that I was past 50 years old and realistically would probably never be able to be a teacher. It dawned on me that in a few years, I would most likely just retire from my job as a secretary with the University and never get to pursue that teaching dream I still had.
UNTIL, one day, after losing 170 lbs., it suddenly occurred to me that perhaps I should look into teaching again. I was approaching retirement age, and maybe I could substitute teach after I left my University job. I took the one class I needed to get my substitute teaching certificate, before I retired, so my tuition was paid as a job benefit, and got hired by the public schools here in town as a substitute teacher. I won’t say it’s everything I ever dreamed of, it’s very hard, walking into a strange classroom, having the kids try to get away with anything they can since they have a “sub,” and learning new routines and techniques with every new situation. But I no longer fear the kid’s taunts and I know I can stand in front of a group of kids, physically strong and mentally tough, although I have had many many questions about my hanging wattle (double chin). I can deal with that. At times I have even told the kids that I used to be fat and now I’m not and that excess skin under my chin is all that is left. (It’s not, but I’m not showing them the rest of my excess skin!) I have tried to use their teasing as a lesson in bullying but I don’t think I’ve gotten very far with that. Still, I’m getting to teach, albeit on a substitute basis, and that is one dream I pursued, no longer held back by my morbidly obese body.
Life is great when we are not trapped by our bodies.
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Sheryl C. July 29, 2013 at 5:24 pm

Holly, this sounds like an awesome opportunity and it is so wonderful you will have your kids right there with you! I am sure this will be a positive experience, even though scary at first.
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Sandi July 29, 2013 at 6:55 pm

Congratulations Holly! Still, after four years of maintenance, I find myself marveling at the things I can do so easily now. Yesterday I was doing some landscaping in our yard with my husband and he said he thinks I’ve found my calling- ditch digging πŸ™‚ I never thought I would be so happy to dig ditches!
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Shay July 29, 2013 at 7:47 pm

I was a middle school English teacher, too, but quit when I had kids and now I work teaching online, too! I also am starting a new job this year (but not teaching middle school English) and am nervous, but so very excited for the possibilities. Good luck; you’ll do fine!!
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Faith July 29, 2013 at 11:16 pm

I’m so excited for you! πŸ™‚ congrats!


Cathey Aubin July 30, 2013 at 12:31 am

Congrats! You will be a great classroom teacher. I wish my kids could have had you!


LHA July 30, 2013 at 1:00 am

How wonderful! I think this is just an extension of your re-emergence into a wider world, as you will be out of the house and off to a new adventure each day. Wishing you a wonderful year as the next step on your amazing journey!


Karen P July 30, 2013 at 2:24 am

Holly, congrats on your new job. I know with your good writing, teaching, and people skills you will take yourself where you need to go on the learning curve.

So happy for you and your new job. Loving that you get “do overs”. Onward.
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Lorenda July 30, 2013 at 2:30 am

Congratulations!! From reading your blog, I can very much imagine you creating the yearbook with the students! I am very excited for you!


chris July 30, 2013 at 5:49 am

congratulations…Teacher! I loved journalism in high school…I still remember my teacher to this day..Mr. Brines. You’ll do great.


robin July 30, 2013 at 10:21 am



Sarah July 30, 2013 at 2:31 pm

I’m SO excited for you! Congratulations! You’ll do great!


Tess July 30, 2013 at 7:05 pm

Eye of the tiger, Holly!! You got this!!!


Cathy Jones July 30, 2013 at 10:41 pm

Oh what fun! Congrats kiddo!!


Julie July 31, 2013 at 4:16 am

God works in mysterious ways and He always has a plan!


Sally August 8, 2013 at 5:23 am

WOW…I was so moved by your Youtube video(and I have watched LOTS since deciding to have VSG) I clicked on your webpage to read more. You have such an inspiring story and in your pictures now your face is radiant!!
I am 2 years away from 50 and with high blood pressure and diabetes, I can’t face MORE years failing at every diet I try which is why I decided to have the sleeve surgery.
I am a teacher too-elementary art- and boy is it exhausting at 315 pounds cause you can’t sit down! I fall on the sofa when I get home and have no energy to get to a gym(and I don’t even have kids-I have cats!)
Good luck with the new job(God certainly does know when to open those windows when a door shuts!)-don’t worry about the Yearbook stuff-they-most companies-we use Lifetouch- are really good about walking you through everything…just get a big calendar and mark the deadlines in RED and work backwards!(I was in publishing before I went into teaching art and I still do the covers for our school’s yearbook.)
I look forward to coming back to your site and seeing what’s happening with your newest journey!


Crystal @ Serving Joyfully August 20, 2013 at 10:09 pm

I just read this and cry. I want so desperately to beat this food addiction and I just cannot do it right now. And I know it’ll only get worse this winter as my depression usually gets so much worse in the winter. I am praying desperately for God to help me. Sometimes I feel like I am slowly killing myself with food πŸ™ I wish I could be as strong as you, Holly.
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Holly from 300 Pounds Down August 21, 2013 at 2:42 pm

Crystal….BIG HUGS to you!!!! I totally understand how you feel. Depression is very tied to the weight loss journey. Food is comforting and so it’s hard to break that when you’re dealing with depression. Don’t try to tackle everything at once. Just pick one thing to work on. If you try going for a short walk every day it often helps. Exercise really does help lift your mood and control depression. I like to listen to Joyce Meyer as I’m walking. Sometimes if I am struggling I will just make a point to go out for 15 minutes and listen to her podcast every day. If that is all I do, it still helps. It builds a routine and helps lift my spirits. Sometimes if we try to tackle the food aspect and the exercise aspect at once it gets overwhelming. So don’t try to do it all at once. Just pick one little thing and work on that. I know that God WILL hear your prayers and He is there. Even when we feel He is not, HE IS. I know your struggles and I am praying for you. Just don’t despair because it will get better!!!


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