A morbidly obese woman who weighs over 600lbs is unable to stand up because of the painful lymphedema growths hanging from her legs.
Liz Evans, 35, was born with one leg shorter than the other but was never able to fully fix the issue. As a child, she was molested by a family friend and started to turn to food for comfort after her parents split up due to her father’s drug addition. Her weight continued to spiral out of control until she was eventually bed bound.
On Wednesday night’s episode of the TLC reality series My 600lb Life, Liz has to learn how to stand on her own in order to have her lymphedema removed, but after a month in a rehab facility, she still can’t do it.
Excruciating pain: Liz Evans, 35, weighs more than 600lbs and has massive lymphedema growths hanging from her legs that she needs to have removed
Struggle: Liz has to learn how to stand on her own in order to qualify for surgery to have her lymphedema removed
Challenges: After a month at a rehab facility, Liz can sit up and get to the edge of the bed, but she still can’t stand up
‘It’s been really hard on me. They have been doing exercises with me, but I haven’t been able to stand just yet,’ she says in a preview clip shared by People.
‘I have been able to start to sit up and get to the edge of the bed, which I feel is good progress because that has been more than I have been able to do in a long time.
‘But I know I need to stand to get my lymphedema surgery, so I’m trying every time to do it.’
When her physical therapist comes in to her room, Liz agrees to try and stand with his help, but she can barely sit up on her own. Liz tells him she needs to catch her breath and points out that her left leg is shaking.
‘It’s just so hard, because physical therapy is excruciating,’ she said. ‘It’s like your legs are awakening the muscles, and coming back alive because I’ve been laid up so long.
Too much: ‘I just have so much weight on my body still,’ she explains. ‘The masses on my legs start to hang down and pull, making it even more painful’
Looking back: Although she was a normal size as a young child, she was born with one leg shorter than the other that caused her to walk with a limp
Abandoned: Liz adored her father and loved spending time with him, but he became a drug addict when she got older, causing her parents to get divorced
‘And I just have so much weight on my body still. And the masses on my legs start to hang down and pull, making it even more painful. So this is just really, really hard.’
Liz eventually announces that she can’t do it, and the physical therapist has to lift her legs to help her get back into bed. The motions causes her to cry out in pain as she tries to get into a comfortable position, but she is refusing to give up.
‘It’s discouraging that I haven’t been able to do it yet,’ she admits. ‘But I know I have to, so I’m going to keep trying until I do. Trust me, I’m going to try to get it.’
Liz was a normal size when she was child, but she was born with curved bone in her leg that resulted in one leg being shorter than the other.
Emotional wounds: When Liz was six years old, she was molested by someone her family knew
Hiding the truth: Liz said she tried to push the trauma from her mind because she felt ashamed
Out of control: Liz started turning to food for comfort after her parents divorce
Growing up, other kids teased her for walking with a limp. Despite multiple surgeries, doctors couldn’t fully fix the issue and she wasn’t able to be as active as she wanted to be. However, she insisted she was happy at the start of her childhood.
‘Some of my best memories as a child was going places with my dad,’ she explains. ‘We could be going to the corner store. I just wanted to be with him. Despite my setback, I remember my early childhood as very happy, but that changed when I was six because I was molested by someone that my family knew.’
Liz recalls feeling so alone and scared because she didn’t know what to do or who she should tell, admitting that she ‘just felt ashamed.’
‘I don’t know if my mom would have believed me,’ she says. ‘I didn’t want to tell my dad because we were so close, and I didn’t want to make him see me any different. I kind of pushed that out of my mind because I didn’t want to think about it.’
Looking back: ‘I was about 10 years old then, and that’s when I remember taking all that pain and starting to run to food,’ she recalled
Quitting: Liz continued to pack on the pounds, and she eventually dropped out of school during her freshman year
Heartbreaking: When her father died two years ago, she was too large to fit in a car to attend his funeral
Liz tried to pretend that it never happened, but that became more difficult when she got older and things at home got even worse.
‘My dad developed a bad drug addiction so my parents got divorced. He let that addiction supersede his wife and his child,’ she says.
‘After that, my life was never quite the same. I was about 10 years old then, and that’s when I remember taking all that pain and starting to run to food.’
Liz dropped out of school after her freshman year of high school because she didn’t fit in, and she continued to pack on the pounds.
Her bad leg eventually developed crippling lymphedema, and when her father died two years ago, she was too large to fit in a car to attend his funeral.
Liz fears that if she doesn’t turn her life around, her mother and aunt will have to put her into a nursing home because they can no longer care for her.