At her heaviest, Light weighed 700 kilos and had been certain to her mattress for practically 4 years. But when she bought to a degree the place she felt a “drastic change” was essential, she questioned if different individuals would possibly profit from listening to her story. So she grew to become a part of the TLC present, which premiered in January and follows Chitoka and her two cousins as they work to shed a few of their 2,000 mixed kilos underneath the steerage of a physician.
“I realized that I needed to do it, not only for myself but for other people to see not just the end result but the struggle it takes to get there,” she instructed HuffPost. “So many individuals had been motivated and impressed by our story, so I knew I made the correct choice.”
The Atlanta-based 50-year-old underwent gastric bypass surgical procedure in 2017. She has since applied a brand new food plan and exercise routine, shedding over 150 kilos thus far. She often posts movies of herself strolling, exercising and describing what her life seems to be like now.
She instructed HuffPost the most important change since beginning to get her weight down has been regaining a way of normalcy ― doing issues like driving in a automotive and shifting freely round her dwelling.
“I have regained that independence as the pounds have come off,” she stated. “Even in my home, on the show I was preparing food in bed.” Now she revels in “being able to cook where people normally cook ― in the kitchen,” in addition to “being able to leave the house. Just the simple things people take for granted.”
Her weight and age made her a dangerous candidate for surgical procedure, and Light contemplated not going via with that process. “I do know individuals would possibly assume it might be apparent contemplating my weight,” she stated. “I just wanted to make sure that I felt at peace about doing it. To me there are a lot worse things than dying, a lot of things could have gone wrong.”
She has credited supportive household and mates with instilling a robust sense of confidence in her each earlier than and after surgical procedure, and instructed HuffPost that almost all suggestions she has gotten on social media or in any other case has been overwhelmingly optimistic. But there was some negativity, and Light has an opinion about why that’s.
“The internet has been good for giving people the opportunity to be exposed to people who are different than them,” she stated. “But I think being overweight is one of the last things people think it’s still okay to make fun of.”
Despite some snippets of negativity from trolls, which she stated she usually ignores, Light’s outlook is one many individuals might stand to implement of their lives.
“I use the word fat to describe myself and people say, ‘Oh, don’t say that about yourself.’ I’m like, it’s just an adjective. I’m intelligent, I’m funny, I’m kind. There are a lot of adjectives to describe me, fat is just one of them.”
As manufacturing is underway for an additional season of the TLC present, Light has continued to make progress, often posting inspiring photographs on her social media feeds. And she has a message for anybody who nonetheless feels the necessity to equate health with measurement.
“Healthy is more than just your physical body,” she stated. “It has to do with your self-esteem, your spiritual state of mind and loving yourself totally. I don’t think it has a size, color, or economic status. Wherever you can find your joy and peace in your physical, mental and spiritual state is healthy.”
Follow Light’s inspiring story here.
Calling all HuffPost superfans!
Sign up for membership to grow to be a founding member and assist form HuffPost’s subsequent chapter