When we launched the second “How do you Celebrate Success Contest” there were several people who wrote in entries. 5 Judges selected our winner, Amy Smith, based on the essay that she submitted. Amy is currently in the middle of training for the Wine and Dine Half Marathon which we will do together in November. This year, I promised that I would share the essays of the other entrants. Each one of them touched my heart in a special way and because of that I want to share their stories with you. I truly wish that I could have more than one winner each time we do this contest and I just want you all to know that every one of them is a winner in my book just for having the courage to enter and to share their remarkable stories.

Let me introduce you to….

diane“How do you Celebrate Success” Contest Entrant
Diane Cary, Farmington Hills, MI

So, currently I am sitting here on the couch recuperating from an illness and somewhat recovering from a depression.  You see I recently lost my beloved aunt to Lou Gerig’s disease.  She was very much like a mother to me.  I miss her deeply.

So, what does this have to do with celebrating success?  Well, this question that you have posted has made me stop wallowing in my grief enough to look back to where I was back in 2010 and now currently in 2014.

In 2010 I was at my highest weight of 328 pounds.  I was very depressed, very unhealthy and looking for a way to start over.  I decided that gastric bypass was my last hope.  So in November of 2010 I underwent RNY surgery.  I focused my mind on exercising and eating healthy.  It was with hard work and dedication that I lost 170 pounds.  I was feeling great and very successful.  My non food way of celebrating was by running.  I ran five 5K’s and one 10 K.  I made a goal to run a half marathon.  Well, life happened.  Both knees got injured and I lost my passion.  I couldn’t run.  I was lost and began to lose my way, slipping back into old habits of taking a nibble here and a nibble there, stopped exercising and began to put on weight.  I no longer was celebrating success. I was in agony of defeat.  It wasn’t until reading about this second contest that was going to happen that I realized that my aunt who watched me succeed and was extremely proud of me, would be very disappointed if I continued to give up.  She would want me to continue on my healthy path and to CELEBRATE my SUCCESS. She’d want me to complete that goal of running a half marathon.  She wants to be able to keep that promise of cheering me on at mile 6, 7, 8 9……. from heaven.


Whether I win this contest or not, I am re-dedicating my goal of running a half marathon to her.  Whether it be thru going to Disney and running that half there or whether it be running one here in Michigan.  I will not disappoint her NOR will I disappoint myself.  I’ve come to far to return back to my unhealthy living.

Thank you Pandora, Ameriwell BariatricsCelebrate VitaminsKay’s NaturalsWellese and BariMelts. for being a catalyst in helping me CELEBRATE my SUCCESS.  I was successful and I will be successful again.

 Thank you for your entry Diane, thank you for sharing your story and I hope that you will continue to enter these contests as I continue to be able to have them. ‘d love for you to check in with us and let us know how you are doing with the training for your Half Marathon. You know we’re about to start a 20Week2WineDine Training program in July and we’d love to have you along on the adventure. I’ll cheer you on from here. Best of luck <3 Pandora


Pandora Williams author of Desperately Seeking Slender is a  Cooper Approved Wellness Coach Trained in Weight Management Strategies and Motivational Speaker studying to become a Certified Personal Trainer.

Check out the Second “How do YOU Celebrate Success” Contest

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