Mum left devastated by ‘special’ first photos with newborn son loses 5 stone
Mum-of-three Alexandra Bave, 36, from Woking, Surrey, felt “self loathing” when she looked at photos of her with newborn son Jackson because she’d put on several stone during pregnancy
A mum-of-three left upset over her first photos with her newborn son after gaining weight while pregnant has dropped five stone.
Alexandra Bave, from Woking, Surrey, was left heartbroken at what should have been precious first pictures with her son, Jackson.
But the 36-year-old mum-of-three said she couldn’t look at the images after realising how much weight she’d gained.
Six months after giving birth, she tipped the scales at 16st 12lbs – her heaviest weight – and made a resolution to ditch junk food.
She said: “I knew I should love the photo because it was a special day in my life, but I hated it.
“The self loathing of how I looked took away all the positive emotions connected to that photo.”
Alexandra has been with her partner, Dan Beck, 35, for 12 years and the couple have three children, Ethan eight, Devon five and Jackson now 16 months old.
Busy with family life in the midst of lockdowns and home schooling, Alexandra tried to enjoy the Jackson’s first Christmas.
She said: “I tried to not let my negative thoughts about myself overtake the festivities but when I brought an XXL Christmas outfit that didn’t fit, I knew I had to do something.
“My two boys began to say ‘look at mummy’s tummy’ so enough was enough.
“I made it my New Year’s resolution to lose five stone. I wanted to feel good about myself and lose weight to be healthy for the children.
“I no longer wanted to be the fat mum.”
But it wasn’t going to be easy.
The day Alexandra started The 1:1 Diet by Cambridge Weight Plan, the UK went into its third lockdown – a trigger which had caused her to pile on the pounds when pregnant.
She said: “Eight packs of crisps, 15 ice pops and two litres of Coca-Cola per day was my way of getting through the first lockdown.
“Food was my only comfort but I was binge eating. I was so busy trying to home school my two children and was heavily pregnant too.
“I didn’t care about myself or realise just how much weight I was gaining.
“My blood pressure rocketed and hospital was my second home with fear that I had pre-eclampsia but I was unable to have visitors, so I passed the time eating unhealthy snacks.”
Once home, Alexandra continued to put on weight, struggling with loneliness during the second lockdown.
She said: “Lockdown was isolating enough as my family live in Italy.
“Raising a baby and trying to home school again, I felt like it was just me, the kids and food.”
Once Alexandra decided to tackle her weight, she stuck to the process.
She said: “The determination to finally be happy in my own skin outweighed any temptation that was in front of me and the support I received meant I no longer felt alone, my consultants were there every step of the way.”
Today Alexandra weighs 11st 10lbs and is very proud of her 5ft 6in frame.
She said: “I now have the confidence to play with my children, rather than watching from the side-lines wishing I could have fun with them instead of being too embarrassed by my size.
“The moment I realised I could fit in the swing in the park with the children made me feel emotional.
“I used to squeeze into size 16 clothes, in denial I was really a size 18, but now can slip into size 10 outfits.”
She added: “I am no longer hiding under baggy T-shirts to cover up my insecurities. The 1:1 Diet has changed my life.”
Alexandra is now a full-time consultant for Cambridge Weight Plan and wants to use her experience to help inspire other mums.
She said: “My kids are my motivation to be a better mum, to take them to the park, kids pick up on your emotions and I want them to see me happy.”
Alexandra’s partner is also very proud.
She said: “He’s loved me at every size but he can’t keep his hands off me now.
“My family are visiting this Christmas. I can’t wait for them to see the new me in person.
“I’m looking forward to taking precious family photos I can look at and love.”