1. I was born in December of 1953 weighing in at 9lbs 3oz. The doc thought I was too big to be breastfed so they kept me in the nursery and away from my mother for 3 days hoping her milk wouldn’t come in. It didn’t work!
2. My parents named me Andrea Jacquelyn and immediately started calling me Jackie. By the time I started school my parents were putting Jacquelyn Andrea on all my legal documents. When I filled out the application for my driver’s license that way I got yelled at by the DMV clerk.
3. I could recognize a Dairy Queen by the time I was 7 mos. I would make a lot of fuss until my parents would pull in to get me a small vanilla cone.
4. I grew up loving fruits and vegetables. My mother was the daughter of a vegetable farmer in Western MA. He sold produce to Amherst College and Smith College and through him she became a enthusiastic lover of vegetables which she passed onto all of her children.
5. My mother took us strawberry picking, apple picking, and peach picking. We used to keep bushel baskets of fruit in the crawl space. My mother encouraged us to eat fruit as snacks anytime we wanted. I ate a lot!
6. I ate a lot of everything. I was never a picky eater. The only time my mother had trouble getting me to eat dinner was on Fridays. I was raised Catholic and didn’t enjoy fish, homemade baked mac and cheese, or grilled cheese sandwiches and tomato soup.
7. No meal was complete without dessert. I still need a little sweet treat as a signal that I’ve finished a meal and am fully satisfied
8. My family started “affectionately” calling me chubby around age 9.
9. By age 11, I understood what they meant and agreed that I was, indeed, the “fat McCormick.”
10. By 13, I was embarrassed by my belly blubber, and thighs obviously bigger than those of my friends.
11. At 17, after graduating from high school and supporting myself as a pattern makers model for John Meyer of Norwich, Emily M, and Jones New York clothing I developed a very effective weight loss method. I drank a cup of black coffee and ate 2 doughnuts for breakfast, had a junior sundae for lunch, and kept hunger at bay the rest of the day by chewing sugarless gum and drinking Tab.
12. I lost my job as a pattern makers model because I got too skinny and that was all right by me!
13. I could never stick with my drastic weight loss plan for very long. I did a lot of weight yo-yoing as a young adult.
14. Being pregnant gave me an excuse to really indulge my appetite. I gained more than 70 pounds with each of my 4 babies. Don’t let anybody tell you that “pregnancy weight isn’t real weight. It is very real and it’s no easier to remove than any other weight you can carry on your body.
15. I reverted to my old coffee/doughnuts/junior sundae diet to take off baby weight. It worked, but when my 5-year-old daughter asked me what I was doing I realized what I was doing was being a very poor role model.
16. Weight Watchers put me back in touch with good dietary habits I enjoyed as a child and helped me reshape old habits that didn’t support weight management.
17. It’s accurate to say all 4 of my daughters grew up in a Weight Watchers household and have very healthy relationships with food and body images.
18. I’m confident that I’ve established good eating behaviors but I still struggle with getting adequate physical activity.
20. I refused the first offer to become a Weight Watchers leader because I can’t speak in public. Now I not just speaking in public, I’m making TV appearances! I lost weight and gained confidence!