We were in a restaurant in Mexico, when my daughter Steph was asked to step outside for a moment by her boyfriend, Lee. When they came back, Steph was glowing and there was a beautiful diamond ring on her finger. There were lots of hugs, tears and plenty of Champagne! After the celebrating, the realisation set in – I was going to be the mother of the bride.

Over the years, I’d become more and more camera shy, rarely having my picture taken. I knew if I didn’t do something I’d end up hiding from the photographer. Determined not to spoil my daughter’s special day, I recruited two friends and we joined Slimming World together.

The Consultant explained how we’d be filling up on delicious, healthy meals to lose weight and I realised that I’d developed some unhealthy eating habits. I’d skip breakfast and lunch – lasting all day on coffee. Once home, I’d be so ravenous I’d eat sandwich after sandwich plus crisps, chocolates, ice cream and anything else I could find.

My group was full of great meal ideas and I couldn’t wait to get going. The next morning I had overnight oats and fruit for breakfast. Mid-morning I snacked on pease pudding rolled in lean ham slices, then for lunch I had a turkey salad with beetroot and pickled onions. In the evening, I put a big plateful of Food Optimising curry in front of my husband, Jim, and he couldn’t believe his luck!

The weight fell off pretty quickly and I felt like a new woman.

Jim used to tease me, calling me ‘the grey lady’ because I always wore nondescript clothing. To be honest, I felt rather ‘grey’ – like I was becoming invisible. Now, as my shape began to change, I was drawn to brighter colours and started wearing more youthful clothes. I had more of a zest for life, too – more so than when I was in my 30s!

In April, the big day arrived – Steph and Lee’s wedding. Standing next to my breathtakingly beautiful daughter, wearing a modern black and white dress, I felt completely at ease in front of the camera. And my favourite accessory? The huge grin on my face! 

*Weight loss will vary due to your individual circumstances and how much weight you have to lose.