I want to introduce you to a very special lady – Seone Maskell. She is one of our loyal Sleekgeek group members from KZN and she has an amazing story of triumph in her life that she has to share with you in her own words. Every time I read this story I get goosebumps. Over to Seone.
Wow doing this is really overwhelming and emotionally draining since thinking back brings back all the emotions from the past, but the thought that my story can help others , motivates me to want to share it and by doing this I get the answer to that age old question “why me” ?!!
Flash back to May 2012 I am sitting in my doctor’s office after being discharged from a wellness clinic aka “The Funny farm” !
I am sobbing in his office and I am struggling to move forward and to let go of the past . I tell him I really do not want to be like this any longer. He asked me type of person would I like to be?
I said someone who is happy and in love with life!
And then he said to me “YOU DO KNOW THAT EVERYONE HAS THE POWER TO REINVENT THEMSELVES?” – Well those words had a profound effect on me! I made a conscious decision that I never wanted to be the way I had been ever again!
My goal was to become that positively happy –go- lucky person who radiates pure happiness and energy…to light up the room instead of filling it with doom and gloom!
To be able to look in the mirror and say “I AM BEAUTIFUL”… both inside and out.
How I got here
Now let’s go back to the beginning. – Which will paint the picture on why I was like this.
Throughout my childhood I always felt like I was invisible , I was severely shy and often called “odd”. I could never really fit in and was always an outsider.
I desperately yearned to be accepted ,to be loved , to be part of “normal” society, when I think back to this time I really feel extremely sad I just want to hug that child.
By the time I hit grade 7 I had heard “I DON`T WANT TO BE YOUR FRIEND ANYMORE” more times that I would have liked to have heard it!
For a child who dreamed of fitting in , being popular and good-looking and I was forever chasing “thin and skinny” because I thought that once I was “thin and skinny” I would instantly would fit in, be popular and good-looking and HAPPY. I was a perfect victim of that dreaded disease called “Bulimia”!
My fight with the disease started in Standard 6(Grade 8) and carried on until only recently.
I had a few really awful experiences , which I would not like to share and these experiences took a huge toll on me and those experiences along with my on-going battled bulimia moulded me into a person had zero self-confidence , a failure and an embarrassment to my family.
I loathed every inch of myself…. I remembered wondering why on earth was I even on this planet! I endured constant bullying from my peers due to my weight and my awkwardness and neediness to be accepted and to fit in…. and by the end of my school career I had totally withdrawn from society and I was a total loner.
As I entered adulthood I was a lost soul filled with anger, sadness, regret and animosity which was festering inside my soul….. this lead me to feel like a total outcast and social reject ….. and I was void of any feelings or emotions due to the effects of my battle with Bulimia.
My early adult years were filled with extreme emotions of hatred for myself and deception as I felt like I had to try hide my bulimia and the way I felt about myself from my family and the world.
I was yearning to fit in and find my place in society, all I wanted to be is loved and wanted. By the time I was 24 I had 2 young children which I thought would fill the void I felt…. to be loved and accepted, to be needed by someone.
The relationship with the father was disastrous and ended but my wonderful kids are the reasons I am still here today and I am so proud of the wonderful people they are becoming … I want to burst with pride when I think about them, they are truly a gift from god, my guardian angels!
In 2005 I had a further child and again I found myself in a relationship which was going no-where, as I was still looking for love and acceptance in all the wrong places.
My Battle with Bulimia continued and I was a total mess and was basically just an empty vessel merely existing ..I felt like the darkness was drowning me…… the I felt like a useless waste of space and a failure, an embarrassment to my family.
I felt like the victim and that the universe was out to get me , I was drowning in negativity and the feeling of total worthlessness was overwhelming. I was falling deeper and deeper into depression and I had no-one to turn to.
I was envious of those happy go lucky people who loved themselves and didn’t have a care in the world I wanted to be comfortable in my own skin!
My mom passed away in 2007 and I fell into a deep depression and struggle to deal with her loss and the “what if’s and if only`s”. I was with my mom when she passed and I struggled to deal with all the emotions. It was from this time that my life started on it downwards spiral and as I entered 2012 my self-esteem and self -worth and were at my all time lowest ,I had totally let myself go … just let the weight pile and I was living in denial…. I totally and utterly hated everything about myself.
I could not look in the mirror or fathom the idea of going anywhere or meeting new people and I had become totally redrawn from society and become a total recluse. In February 2012 my long-term partner decided to reunite with his partner for the sake of his kids and it was at this one that I reach my breaking point.
I had a major break-down and basically tried to end my life and was submitted to a “Wellness clinic” for 21days… however , when I was in the clinic I found my love for exercising and I started to find my passion again and my energy levels started to spike.
However , my stomach basically shutdown and I could not eat for 5 months I was living on shakes! Yes I lost weight but I could feel my body was giving up my hair started to fall out and I literally looked like I was melting away!
After my visit to my doctor and with those words in my head “YOU DO KNOW THAT EVERYONE HAS THE POWER TO REINVENT THEMSELVES” I started to dig deep , did loads of soul searching…. My passion for exercise continued to grow and many a light bulb moment happened when I was running on the treadmill.
Taking positive steps
I feel that having my breakdown was the best thing that could have ever happened to me as it enabled me to have a re-birth of sorts and whilst at the depth of despair I found the light and in this light I started to find my happiness, it had been there all along and I slowly started to let go of all my baggage from the past …forgave everyone who hurt me and this started to set me free!
I started to feel happiness and excitement for the future … Then I realised in order to move towards really starting to know myself worth and be able to stand in front of the mirror and say “I am beautiful” I needed to start treating the body right .. and I decided in order to bid goodbye to the old me and all the scars from the past.
I had my tattoos still and I now look at them and they help me remember the place where I have come from and why I never what to go back to that place again!
It was time to start teaching myself to eat and my goal was to become really really really healthy and fit.. at the time I really didn’t say oh I want to look a certain way …I was now doing it for a totally different reason , which was totally different to my past goals, to be healthy!
It was during this time when I happened to be invited to join the Sleekgeek Facebook Group which would totally change my life and my mind-set!
I was still struggling with my confidence levels and self-worth and wondering what my purpose was!
I started to get involved and shyly shared my story and WOW the feedback was overwhelming… here’s this girl who struggled her whole life to fit in and had endured years of rejection and had a feeling of total worthlessness who was starting to receive the most amazing messages and support from total strangers who had been through their own transformation and were using their lives as inspiration to others , helping to live others up and not put them down …helping to build up their self-confidence… not trying to make other people feel inadequate or insecure about themselves!
This group was life changing and believe me I cried and cried!
When I started receiving messages from others thanking me for sharing my story and that I was helping them by knowing that it is possible to get to other side better and stronger.
Wow if the heavens could have opened up and the angels start to sing it would have ….BEING CALLED AN INSPIRATION WAS LIFE CHANGING !!!!!
I started to find my self-worth and purpose on earth … I could use all the negative past experiences in a positive way to help others … and this gave me passion and purpose to push forward … I knew that I was what I was doing was for the right reason and no longer for the wrong selfish reasons!
My self-worth and self-confidence started to grow waking up and knowing that I had a purpose gave me my passion for life again.. I still have my bad days but they are few and far between!
The new me
I now stand here the person I have always dreamed about becoming! – and if only I could send the old me these words from my favourite WHM song “ Don’t worry child see heaven`s got a plan for you”
I feel that without Sleek Geek as my forum I would have never found my self-worth and purpose and I would have gone backwards to my old bulimic ways … But I know stand here stronger and filled with passion for life and excited about the future.
I can now walk with my head up high and I am not embarrassed about what I went through and do not want anyone to feel sorry for me as I totally believe the I am one of the luckiest girls on the planet as not everyone gets a second chance in life.
I feel like a am bursting with positivity and happiness and to know that I can have a positive effect on at least one life give me the answer to that question “WHY ME?”
I am proudly a Sleek Geek for life!!!
These are some of the amazing messages from 2 of the most inspirational ladies I have ever “met”. They are also proud Sleekgeeks and they will never know how much they help me during a time I needed it most. I will be forever grateful to them. (Joanna Barber and Tarrin Hagan)
They made me want to become a better person:-
Joanna May Barber WOW – what you just said hit a sore spot for me… “learning to accept the new me and to love myself and know my self worth”. I too experienced a bad relationship last year but I won’t give up doing what makes me happy and I will because of what you just said carry on with my journey too. You have transformed into a beautiful women and you look amazing. I personally am so proud of where you came from and where you are right now! You have inspired me today, definitely needed to read this. So thank you for sharing! 😉
Joanna May BarberNo, THANK YOU! Really 😉 you are glowing in those pictures and I am smiling whilst typing this because I am meeting so many women that I can relate to and it feels so good knowing, you not alone! Keep it up because I am going to be too with you. 😉 x
Tarrin Hagan Seone! Well done to you babe!! Just like I said to Jo the other day its so inspiring reading these journeys we all go through. I too can relate to your story and I know Jo will agree with me,never ever again let some1 dull your sparkle! You are beautiful,something I struggled to believe myself,I sometimes still struggle to believe it when I look in the mirror,its an on-going battle but having all u beautiful, inspiring ladies 4 support is the best gift life has given me. We ARE all beautiful in our own way and even though I’ve never met u,I’m so darn proud of you! You go Girl!! I’m smiling on the inside! What a gr8 start to my weekend!
Joanna May Barber I just got tears in my eyes, reading what you just said. This has such a huge positive impact on my life, more than I can put into words & after your post I will promise to always remain true to me, to want to be the best I can be 😉 so you keep shining & doing what you doing its impacting my life already, you are such a beautiful women, pleasure to have you apart of the group! X
Some tips for you
These are my tips on keeping on track:-
- If you do it for the right reasons your will be able to each your goals and keep with it …. My goals were to be“ happy , fit and healthy” and nothing feels as good as “happy , fit and healthy” does!!!!
- Find a passion and love for exercise , when you love doing something you do not need any motivation to do it because you LOVE doing it!!! And DO ALL WOMAN MUST LIFT WEIGHTS AND NOT THE LADY`S PINK ONES EITHER
- Preparation is key! Even if you are dead tired make sure you always pack your food for the day ahead!
My current lifestyle is as follows:-
I train 6 times a week and I am currently concentrating on weight training but I am still a cardio queen at heart and I am wanting to incorporate cardio in the mornings soon!
I love going to gym it my passion ,I feel so excited with the thought that it is almost that time of the day!
I love the feeling one gets after a great workout and this feeling I never want to lose… and feeling that I am getting stronger and stronger is the most liberating feeling on earth!
What I eat will in all likelihood bore most people but it’s how I like to eat and what I am comfortable with eating. I am slowly but surely trying to add more variety to my plan I do want to have ultimate health and I know I need to up my game when it comes to eating.
I am one of those people who do not eat for leisure but merely to fuel the body … Some may find this an alien way of thinking.
The foods I try incorporate my daily plan are as follows:
– Oats with cinnamon(been adding Coconut milk), tuna , avo , chicken (grilled) , eggs (just trained myself to egg them ) , veggies (I love broccoli ) , minimum fruit (which is a hard one I used to over indulge on fruit like there was no tomorrow) , almonds ( DO NOT OVERDO IT), coconut and loads of water of course.
I am not an oil lover or sauce person … I like my food plain and simple (NO FUSS).
My carbs are very low at the moment I may need to add some at a later stage I currently try to add butternut to my meals as I am not a bread or starch lover.
If you are trying to lose weight always remember portion control is key so you need to do your homework.
Do not follow the quick fix route as these are not sustainable consult with the experts and being part of the Sleek Geek family there are soooo many experts who are so helpful and full of knowledge.
Keep learning and growing from everything you read and find what works best for you!!
In the past I would gym like a demon but eat like one too and well the results were disastrous.
If I was to explain my current way of life is would be to EAT CLEAN/TRAIN DIRTY!
Love what you are doing have that passion and enthusiasm for it and find a balance….I love socialising now I want to be around people and meeting new people … after talking to someone they should feel your enthusiasm and passion for your way of life too!
Be the sculptor of your body and by using the best there is out there you will get the best results.
If you do not feel this passion and enthusiasm then you know you are doing something wrong and you need to dig deep inside your soul and find out what is holding you back and why you are doing what you are doing.
Do not have the mindset I will be happy when I am SKINNY AND BONEY… I remember being over the moon when my hip bones protruded and there were times that I was so drained and tired I could not get out of bed …I was living on nothing and anything I ate I would have to get out of my system.
The scale and the numbers on the scale would dictate how I felt for the day!
Good luck on your journey!
Seone xxx[ Click here to join the Sleekgeek Facebook Group ]
MORE About Seone
Occupation: Company Liaison Officer at Peter Maskell Auctions
City: Pietermaritzburg Kwazulu Natal
Weight before: 75kg (Maybe more as I could not bring myself to weight myself)
Weight after: 61Kg
Time taken to lose weight: one year
Secret weapon to your weight loss: Actually eating right and proper weight training
Seone has participated in some of our challenges and below are a few things she posted in the group along the way
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