I’m Jessie. I’m a mom, wife, graphic designer and whipmaker in Northwest Wisconsin. My husband is a welder and mechanic and I have 4 children.
I am also a fighter, a learner, and a cheerleader for anyone struggling with weight loss and food addiction. While a big supporter of loving yourself as you are, I am also a huge supporter of being healthy and improving yourself in both mind and body. Here is my story:
I was never a thin girl. I’ve been heavy my whole life and like a lot of people, assumed this was my lot in life. I found a man, got married and had kids. Through the years my addiction to food never waned and I eventually ended up, at my heaviest, 500 pounds. I was barely mobile and absolutely miserable.
After watching my dad decline due to obesity and helping to care for him during his last years, I realized I needed to do something drastic. I was going to die young and miserable if I didn’t. I opted to have gastric bypass. Even though I was involved in a lot of education beforehand, I was still under the impression that the bypass would be a quick and easy fix, and to an extent, it was. I lost nearly 165 pounds with the bypass. However, it was neither quick, nor easy and came with it’s own issues both physical and mental.
Unfortunately, my food addiction was not resolved and eventually, I could eat a little more, and with my lack of (and aversion to) exercise, I gained more than 50 pounds back again. I was absolutely devastated. All that time of being sick and the pain, and mental stress, only to be able to gain it back? Upsetting, to say the very least. It was then that I realized I needed to work if I wanted to be healthy. There is no such thing as a free ride. Easy is not a thing. This was not my lot in life. I wanted to be healthy.
I tried exercising, but I quickly realized I hate treadmills, walking in circles and most especially, the gym. Every exercise was a chore, it made me sweaty and nauseous. I hated every second, the weight wasn’t coming off fast enough if at all and eventually, I once again started to give up and quit, picked up the chips and resigned to my fate. My own laziness and addiction was getting the best of me. I continued to eat garbage and wasn’t moving, both in body and in the wrong direction on the scale. Pound after pound was inching back and I was not in a good place.
One day, I happened to be helping at a western reenactment festival and there was someone there cracking a whip. I thought it was the coolest thing I had ever seen and decided right then and there, that I wanted to do this. I had no thoughts of it being exercise, I just wanted to know how. My first whip was a tourist special made from rope and 4 plait cow hide–it barely cracked, and the whip itself only lasted a day, but what an awesome day! Even if I wasn’t making noise, I was the coolest being on the planet–and even though I wasn’t knowing it at the time, I was exercising. I was sweating, my heart rate was up, I was getting stronger. My enjoyment kept me out of the kitchen and gave me something other than food to think about. I found my fun, my inspiration, and my drive to do better. Even as heavy as I was, I was able to go out and crack a whip. Sitting or standing, I was moving and getting stronger, able to go further, crack longer. I found my “thing.”
Coupled with healthy eating and regular cardio, I had learned to incorporate my whip practice into my exercise regimen. The weight finally started to come off again and still is. I have lost a total of 272 pounds. I have 63 more pounds to go before I am to my goal weight of 165 pounds. Some days are harder than others. Every day I fight my demons. I am on a lifelong journey and I want everyone who can’t move, you can. People who tire easily, people who are immobilized by their weight, people who need motivation to know, there is more. Fat acceptance isn’t a thing. Health is a thing. Freedom is a thing. Joy and beauty is a thing. You. You are a wonderful thing. It does not have to be hateful; weight loss is hard enough without it having to be hateful. You can love it. You can look forward to it. You are so worth it. You are, Sui Generis.
I make my whips specifically for strengthening. I make them for easy cracking. I make them beautiful to look at to motivate and make their user feel special. I make them so anyone can dance. Anyone can see results. I make them for success.
I make them for you.
Be well. Be strong. Be Sui Generis.