'How I lost 70kg and changed my life'
SUSAN Hockings started the decade at 130 kilos, miserable, and struggling to do anything aside from work, and go home.
But she'll be finishing it 70 kilos lighter than she started, thanks to a life-changing decision.
"Everything was hard work and it gets you down," Miss Hockings told the Herald.
"I knew if I didn't lose the weight it was going to shorten my life so I decided to do something."
When it became too hard for her to play with her niece and nephews, and life just got too exhausting, she made the decision to have gastric sleeve surgery so she could shed the weight that was holding her back from truly loving life.
Miss Hockings heard from her family, friends, and doctors that she should lose weight. But she said it was a decision she needed to make for herself.
"They were always worried for me," she said.
"As much as they'd say I think it's best that you lose weight, you've got to decide it for yourself.
"You kind of resent it a little bit, because people are always telling you what to do. But they don't have to worry about that now."
The surgery didn't just become a necessity. Miss Hockings knew she wanted it so she could start living life to the fullest.
"I struggled with being able to do it (lose the weight) myself, so I said I need to have this," she said.
"I researched it all very well and GP recommended it.
"It's been the best thing since sliced bread for me."
Since having the surgery, Miss Hockings said her quality of life has improved drastically in the last decade.
"I feel a lot better, my mood is better," she said.
"I feel more confident. I've spent a fortune on clothes. As a bigger person, shopping for clothes is a nightmare."
Miss Hockings said she still enjoys her cheese and her "nibbley foods" without guilt, and will be finishing the decade looking and feeling her very best.
But the most valuable lesson she has learnt is a lesson on how to be happy.
"Try and be happy," she said.
"If that means that you've got to do something a bit more radical like that, then go for it."
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