Half the woman I used to be.

Yesterday, trawling through CD’s in search of more
music to ‘pod, I found old files on CD-ROM dating from 1999. They are mostly
pictures of beads and jewelry, and work documents. Once in a while, there’s a
surprise. Like this picture taken after the Jamiroquai concert in Singapore in

Fuchsia hair notwithstanding, my
self-esteem was so low I couldn’t find it without dislocating vertebrae. I told
myself I didn’t care about how I looked, and to a certain extent, I truly
didn’t; there were simply too many other things to worry about, and eating was a
welcome distraction. I was in an emotionally demanding and draining relationship
– what Joel fondly calls my “zombie yaya” phase – and it was a convenient excuse
for a body I was increasingly unhappy

Before Christmas of 2002, I had
just gone up a flight of stairs (my office was on the second floor) when I
suddenly found myself gasping for breath. It was simply too much weight for my
body to carry comfortably.

Never having
gone on a diet (or other such signs of formalized self-control) before, I
decided to research. I knew I needed something simple and easy to integrate into
my routine. The Atkins diet seemed to fit the bill. I had never
been that fond of rice, or pasta, or bread; giving up chocolate, gummy bears and
regular Coke, though, was almost

Much to my astonishment, I
lost weight continuously. By March of 2003, I had lost around 30 pounds and was
happily wearing a size 6. In June I was a size 0 and people were accusing me of
being anorexic. Now I am a more rounded size 2 or 4, and Teye has told me I
should stay at this weight because when I am thinner than this, I am all