"It was very traumatizing to be laid off, when they escorted me out and watched me pack my stuff, it made me feel terrible. And I left crying. It just hurt," says Barbosa.
"I've never been laid off before and it put me to the lowest point of my life. I got to the point where the depression was so bad, I just stayed at home, just eating cookies drinking soda. I didn't want to socialize or do anything, just staying at home and having my comfort food. It just pushed me over the edge. I just cried, I felt terrible," she adds.
Barbosa says she has been battling a weight problem for about 12 years. "I've done the carrot soup diet, Atkins diet, Weight Watchers, over the counter pills, every time I heard of a diet, I got on it, and I would succeed and just fail again." But nothing has worked. She says she does not look at the mirror anymore. "Deep down inside, I didn't like myself," she says.
But she wants to be healthy again, "and slimmer. I want to be able to look myself in the mirror and say I'm beautiful."
So she says she was watching The Early Show and decided to ask for help.
"There's always hope; if there is someone who is willing to help you, there is always hope. That's one of the reasons I wrote to your show, because I needed that hope," she says.
And The Early Show is answering.
On Thursday, Barbosa will meet Dr. Louis Aronne who recently helped others shed unwanted pounds during the Weight Off series. Dr. Aronne has agreed to help Barbosa for the next six months so The Early Show is flying her to New York City once a month.
Dr. Aronne's clinic takes a medical/scientific approach to weight loss. From blood work, he says, he will be able to diagnose the causes of her weight gain and tailor a plan just for her. And he will also be able to help her control her depression, offering a comprehensive program.
While at home, Barbosa will be quite on her way to a new life. The Early Show has found a personal trainer to work with her for the next three months and an employment agent to help her find a job.