One Year Post Finale Thoughts

You should probably listen to this song...while you read.

Because I did.
While I wrote it.
And the lyrics.
They are all over the place.

"In my life, I never thought I'd get a second chance."
When DJ called that first day in Philly.
About Extreme Weight Loss interviews.
I thought.
I never get a second chance.
Being fat.
And unlovable.
That's what I'd become good at.
And hiding how miserable I was.
Those were the things I did best.

"I thought I was done."
I remember when I told him I had moved to Philly.
His voice was like, okay.
We'll call you next month during Philly auditions.
Which if you are heavier person.
You know what that means.
Thanks but no thank you.
And so.
When Kerry Shans called a month later and was like,
"Interview on Saturday at the Four Seasons."
I was at best, skeptical.
And as the process continued.
I was still skeptical.

"Then I met you."
Of course, those lyrics lead to the most magical moment.
The moment Chris Powell hugs you and knows your story.
And name.
And inside you.
You realize.
That unfortunately.
Is just a random dude.
An awesome and random dude.
And he and your amazing production team.
Aren't going to lose weight for you.
Don't know anything you don't know.
And won't make your life better in any way.
That everything you have always needed.
Is inside of you.
Beside you.
Laughing on Saturday afternoon with you.
Handing you tissues in Life Group.
Or cheering you on inside the gym.
But the most important of all of these, is the piece that I began to grow inside me.
So really, Then, I met me."

"And though I never dreamed I'd learn how to love again, I placed my bets and you came through."
I never imagined in all nine months of production.
And now one year since finale, that I'd learn to love myself.
The way I'm learning to love myself.
Notice, I say learning.
Because I start new each day.
Some days.
I rock at it.
Other days.
All of the choices that made me me, are waiting for another happy accident.
To grow from.
Learn from and love into.

"I somehow still lost.  I somehow always do, but this time feels new"
But I'm not sorry.
For all the missteps.
Moments that I desperately hate myself.
So much.
That it's hard to breathe.
Those moments when I step away from the work.
Back toward.
This would be easier for everyone.
Back toward.
I'm so huge.
No one will ever really love me.
Back toward.

But now.
It's never for long.
I'm better at asking for what I need.
And want.
And who.
And putting those people in my line of vision.
Those things.
A pair of crimping scissors.
Sheet Music.
A piano.
A run.
A good pair of running pants.
A hug.
And boy howdy hoo.
Do I mean a ton of therapy.
And 100% my higher source.
You know, God.
He and I.
We run regularly together.
And I am assured by him.
That that number of people that actually hate me.
Isn't as high as I assert daily it is.
And that he built me.
To do great work.

Maybe that's my point at the ONE YEAR SINCE FINALE MARK.
We're always starting over.
Starting a new.
In new places.
Surrounded by varying faces.
And learning to love myself.
Is just a path on this journey.

That being said.
A thank you to Chriedi and my incredible production team.
To Jacqui Hart McCoy and all my EWL family.
But most of all.
To the real people.
Who populate my life.
On a daily basis.
Help with the nourishing of my spirit and soul.
And see me.
At the beginning and end of this journey.
Isn't that all we want.
To be seen.
And perhaps loved by those around us.

Perhaps, it's too much to be written for everyone.
But I know that's how the broken me feels.
Can anyone see the pain?
Or the hope?
And there are.
Plenty of people in my life.
Who can.
And do.
And for that.
And for them.
I start over.
Every day.

Next month, will also mark ONE YEAR SINCE I STEPPED ON A SCALE?!
And I can't wait to celebrate with all my matterers who know that no scale can measure your value.
No tag can tell you your SIZE in the world.

You matter.
We matter.
And we are so loved.

That being said, I do faithfully, every week,  put on that finale bikini (and other bikinis for that matter.)
And make sure I can pass.
And that feels good.
April 6th, 2013
"My new life starts right now."
April 6th, 2014


  1. Hi, Jami! This is a wonderful post. I just wanted to say that yours is my favorite EWL episode, because of your personality that shone through. You're inspiring not just because you've lost so much weight, but because of all the ways you fight for yourself and put it out there for others to relate to. Very brave. Congratulations on all of your accomplishments, even the work-in-progress ones. Especially those. :)

    1. Thanks Jennifer! I love your kind words :) I appreciate so much that I get to be a work in progress and that being a work in progress fact...a ridiculously normal and amazing thing :)

  2. Hi Jami, I just accidentally bumped into your video (I'm not always watching the program, but since eating behaviour is my research topic, every now and then, I watch it). I really liked to see your follow-up story. How has it been for you to keep up with your routine of exercising and the new diet? What are your biggest challenges and how do you manage to cope with them? I am interested in hearing more from you! And I also want to congratulate you from your hard work so far! Really well done! Greetings from the Netherlands!


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