I was a junk food junkie.

I had two babies—just 18 months apart—and worked full time. I thought I’d be one of those women who could handle it all: family, home, career. But it turned out that I when I was working I longed to be with my kids. When I was with my kids, I felt guilty about work. And my house was always a damned mess.

Junk food was my savior.

I have distinct memories of dropping my girls off at daycare every morning, stopping at the convenience store to buy two candy bars (so I could inhale them in the car), and slurping several cups of coffee throughout the day. I ate lots of sugar and white flour. I ate two bowls of ice cream every night. I breastfed my youngest daughter at the time and wondered why she didn’t sleep at night.

As my babies grew into toddlers, an internal whisper nudged me to change. I didn’t want my creative, funny, joyful girls to grow up with my dysfunctional relationship with food. I knew I had to do better. I wanted to model a healthy relationship with food. Slowly but surely, I started cleaning up my act. Along the way, I taught my girls about healthy food and nutrition. Our meals became filled with protein, whole grains, and lots of fruits and veggies. We were on the right track.

My life unraveled.

Fast forward 15 years or so, and I found myself dealing with a different kind of crisis. The three people I loved most in the world—my ex-husband and two teenage daughters—were each struggling with anxiety and depression, and the symptoms manifested differently for each of them. Our relationships were fraught with confusion, angst, anger, and love. I spent many wakeful nights on silent suicide watches, asking for help from a higher power. I found myself standing at closed doors listening to endless days of sobbing on the other side, with no idea how to help. I spent countless hours in hospital waiting rooms helping my loved ones seek relief. I refilled my wine glass far too many times.

Healthy eating took a backseat for all of us.

We found our way.

Jennifer Hooper and daughtersWhile I don’t have debilitating anxiety, I know what it looks like. I’ve been a witness, supporter, and advocate for people I love. I’ve helped them explore all kinds of remedies: medication, therapy, exercise, homeopathy, safe houses, and healthy eating. I “get” how overwhelming anxiety is. It’s real. It’s big. It gets in the way of real life.

Thankfully, my family relationships have recalibrated and found solid ground. We’ve discovered mutual respect all the way around. I consider my ex a good friend. My daughters are 18 and 19, and they care very much about the food on their plates. They’ve learned (and continue to learn) the triggers that kick off their anxiety symptoms and strive to avoid them. As for me, decades of food, caffeine, and wine abuse have taken their toll. I’m very mindful about what I eat. I work on my own healing every day.

Giving back.

I became a health coach to help others. I’m passionate about helping those who are struggling with anxiety. I get it. I’ve lived it.

I also know there’s a way out.

Through my health coaching training, I’ve learned about the golden keys that can unlock the door to relief. (If only I’d found them a few years ago.) I can’t go back in time, but I can help now. Today, I’m can offer even more support to the people I love, and I can support you too. I’d be honored to help.

Get started today.

Rid your life of the worry, fear, stress, and chaos that anxiety creates. Reclaim your headspace, calm your worries, and find your joy.

Curious what that looks like? Contact me to learn more.