I’m scared. At 187 pounds, I’ve been here before. In fact, the last time I was here was almost 8 years ago. It was actually when the weight really started to climb. It came back slowly, until, by 2013 I was hitting numbers higher than I’ve ever seen and by 2015, I was depressed, a hermit and when I did finally get back on the scale, was shocked to see 245 lbs. So here it is, the Good, the Bad and the Ugly from the halfway mark in the road….
- I’ve never felt so clear-headed. My brain is free of fog.
- I no longer have cravings. I have occasional temptations, but they are manageable.
- No more joint pain.
- I am no longer depressed and I am calmer about everything.
- I am beginning to believe this is truly attainable AND sustainable.
- My skin has changed and my eyes sparkle.
- To be able to say I’ve accomplished this in under 5 months is miraculous given my history.
- I now realize that my failure in the past had nothing to do with willpower or discipline and had everything to do with changing my brain chemistry and hormonal balance. I finally found the answer, and it’s consistently working.
- I’m afraid of the slow down. The pounds aren’t coming off quite as quickly as they were in the beginning.
- I regret it has taken me this long to awaken and find the answer.
- I secretly believe the numbers are lying because it’s hard to look myself in the mirror and really embrace the change, that I really have taken off a LOT of weight.
- It pisses me off that I have to be so conscious all the time around what I choose to eat.
- I’ve had to embrace the cold hard truth that I am highly susceptible to the effects of flour and sugar.
- I worry that I will forever carry the scars of being overweight, like the jowels on my face and in place of my double-chin there is the start of a chicken neck.
- I have nightmares that I will wake up and be over 200 lbs again.
- I wonder whether I will ever really be thin enough, whether my goal of 135 lbs. will be enough.
- I have been slacking on the exercise front and haven’t been able to establish a real routine. I haven’t been able to exorcise the demons around exercise.
Yup. At the half way mark, a time when I should be celebrating, a time when I should be gathering steam to go the rest of the way, I’m feeling a whole lot of things. It’s almost as if the denial I was in has washed away and now it’s a tsunami of emotions. That denial on some level protected me from all of this. Those layers of fat and finding comfort in food did take away the sting. I was in my own little denial bubble, eating my feelings and shutting out the rest of the world. And now, as the weight comes off I have no choice but to feel them. I no longer look to tobacco and food to numb me out.
Yesterday, my husband and I took my daughter for a college visit. I couldn’t help but notice that I felt everything a bit more. It’s a combination of joy that my beautiful brilliant daughter has so many wonderful options for her future and the pain of knowing there are only a precious few months left before my baby goes off to college and it will mark the end of her childhood in a very dramatic way. On the tour, there was a family who was morbidly obese. The mother in particular was so overweight, she barely made it up a few flights of stairs when we visited the dorms. And the daughter? She was at least 150 pounds overweight, not very far behind her mom. It hit me hard. While I was never that big, I was pretty damn close to being that big. Four months ago I would have been huffing and puffing up those stairs. Instead of judging them for being undisciplined or unenlightened, I found myself feeling an overwhelming sadness. They probably go through life comforting themselves with all the flour and sugar-laden food, and it’s not their fault. It’s an addiction, and a third of our population is suffering. I wanted to get up on my soapbox, give her my blog address, offer to send her my plan. But it wasn’t to be. It wasn’t the time or place, and who am I anyway to be preaching yet?
Lunchtime rolled around and we decided to eat in the dining hall. I managed to find all the right food to eat, even though the smell of fried mozzarella sticks loomed large in the hall. As I sat at the table, I felt more in my body than I’ve felt in months. It was the recognition that I have come far. It was also the recognition of many a time in the dining hall during my own college days and how I never felt conscious or knew how to navigate the road to being thin and feeling free of all the nonsense. It is in those moments that regret can circle. Why didn’t I figure this out sooner? Why have so many years passed with this one big thing not being achieved? And how do I know that this time will be different? How will I insure getting to goal and staying there?
WHY THIS TIME IS DIFFERENT
- I created my own support group. It’s a safe space where even though I started it, I am also a member and can be vulnerable in my weaker moments and know my tribe has my back.
- Doing the scariest thing, removing flour and sugar, and sticking with a plan has not been as hard as I had imagined. I have surrendered to staying within the lines and in the surrender came real mastery and control. Radical yes, hard at the start, but now, honestly? I’m doing well, and food doesn’t have the charge it once had.
- I am committed to continuing to pass along the information, giving back, putting what I know into the Universe so that maybe, just maybe your journey or anyone else who comes after will find the tools they need to put this beast to bed once and for all. If I had to wait this long to begin healing, perhaps this is the reason. To share my story, and to say it’s never too late to begin again.
- I’ve gone public in a way I never imagined I’d have the courage or will to do.
- I own this journey in a way I never have and I am beginning to carve a new definition of success: It’s not about perfection, it’s truly about determination. Getting up and trying again, even when you fall hard, or don’t believe it’s possible. That has filtered into every area of my life now.
I may not be able to just walk up to someone I know is in psychic pain around their weight. But I can tell my story. I can keep being vulnerable, and public. And because of you, reading this now, it’s not just about my journey. It’s not just about me. And somehow, during those times when I feel dark & twisty, in those moments when I doubt whether I can make it all the way, I know I can’t let you down. I can be the example of the woman who has been through the battle, and is finally not allowing all the rats gnawing on the wires to get the best of her. I may or may not hit the 50 lb milestone this week. In the end, the numbers are just markers, they are not the journey.
Do me a favor? Let me know what you think about this below. Does this resonate for you? I am forever grateful.