These (Jiggly) Arms: Self-Value and Life Saving Weight Loss
Regina Bartlett |
• March 2018
Regina Bartlett always considered her body like it was a punishment. A terrifying experience being stuck underwater in a river as a girl left her fearful, searching for control over her young life. Her fear led to an eating disorder. “I ended up finding this incredible feeling of safety and comfort with food,” she says. At over 400 pounds, Regina lived as Super Morbidly Obese for 30 years. The seemingly insurmountable task of losing weight – of fixing her body – defined Regina for most of her life. She saw her condition as a lack of will, preventing her from escaping her “body prison,” until she began to view obesity as a disease rather than a social stigma. “I could have floated through life as a 400-pound miserable adult, but I realized that my body had value the way it was,” she says. This is a disease that can be treated and the shift in perspective led Regina to long-term success. Regina is an author and speaker who uses her story to help people navigate the river of behavioral and surgical options for medical weight loss. “People have a lot of disparaging things to say about weight loss surgery, but I saw that this could be a lifesaving medical treatment,” says Regina. The first life she saved was her own. In 2016, Regina completed the New York City Marathon in the same body that raised a family and now helps others struggling to reclaim their lives. Regina joins us on the TEDx Newport stage with, “These (Jiggly) Arms: Self-Value and Life Saving Weight Loss” – a story of drowning fear and embracing our own value.