A Friends Success, Struggling Friends, And Becoming A Good Friend of Food
One question that has always perplexed me is this: How was I able to maintain a weight between 500 and 520 for so many years, when I was doing absolutely nothing to “maintain” that weight? I'm not complaining, no, not at all. But it's just weird. Do our bodies have a preset limit to how big we can become? Was it that I maintained just enough daily activity to keep me at that weight range despite my enormous daily caloric intake? It's all behind me now, but when I get deep in thought I try to figure that one out, and I can't. I'm very lucky I guess. Very lucky.
A huge “way to go” goes out to Rachel, a regular reader of this blog from Day 1. She's allowed life to get in her way for so long. While following my journey, she would occasionally experience epiphanies, but then very little would change...until now. Rachel is grabbing control, she's working out at the YMCA everyday and finding support among her family that didn't seem to be as strong several months ago. Rachel just became an RN, in fact she's officially been an RN for about a week now. As a nurse, I'm sure she's witnessed the devastating effects of morbid obesity on her patients. She's taking charge and leading her and her family out of this horrible place. I'm so proud of you Rachel! Rachel and my wife have been best friends since sixth or seventh grade. I've known Rachel since my freshman year in high school. When I first met Irene, the two of them were inseparable. At first I was confused who was who, so much so, that I went home and carved “I 'heart' Rachel” on the wood desk in my bedroom. I meant Irene, but I thought her name was Rachel...I was confused!! Imagine the comedy that ensued months later when Irene discovered the carving! I'm not sure that Irene viewed it as comedy, but it was hilarious to me, because I was innocent! I had some serious explaining to do. I'm not sure if she believes me to this day! Rachel and I went through a period where we couldn't stand each other at all. But we're in a wonderful place now that we're all seasoned adults. We all love each other and care about one another. And that's why I'm so thrilled over Rachel's recent commitment and consistency.
Irene and I are without children tonight. Amber is at a concert festival in Kansas and Courtney is sleeping over at a friends house. I prepared a wonderful candlelit dinner, her favorite of grilled sirloin steak, baked potato, green beans, and salad. After I finish tonight's blog, we're walking all the way to the Redbox DVD rental location and picking out a nice movie, then we're going to snuggle up and watch it! It'll be a workout, but not our best, but that's alright tonight. We're in a good place.
I know of a few friends, some that blog, some that don't, that are experiencing some really tough times with their weight loss efforts. Two of them have already lost nearly 100 pounds, but still are experiencing horrible relapses in their behaviors with food. For them I offer this: It's not too late to get back in that groove that has given you so much success so far. But as you return to that groove, consider a couple of things. Have you been focusing on the things that you know will drop the pounds, and ignoring the necessary mental changes that will keep you consistent? Just eating less and exercising more doesn't do it for the long term. Like any weight loss plan, it will work, but you know that true change only sticks around when we change our minds about food. Are we trudging through, struggling every step of the way? Or are we rejoicing in a new found way of thinking, where the weight loss becomes a side effect of our transforming brain? This new way of thinking means no longer using food irresponsibly. No longer using it like a weapon against our emotions, it's so easy to write and read on the screen, but seriously...think about this. A huge part of this transformation for any of us, is realizing that food is our friend. And treating food right, instead of abusing that friend. It's a relationship that we must recognize. In the past, I used and abused food. Food was treated horribly, I used it as a weapon against my emotions, I used it when I was stressed, when I wasn't having a good day, when the world seemed completely stacked against me...food was my way out. A way to find something that was good in what seemed like a horrible existence. This way of using and abusing food is so widely accepted, we refer to certain foods as “comfort” foods. And that makes it OK, because everybody knows that mashed potatoes and gravy or ice cream---well those are “comfort” foods...we're suppose to drown our sorrows in them. Baloney! It doesn't have to be that way! This isn't something I realized from Day 1, I had to develop along the way. I had to understand my relationship with food, and once I did, once it was clear...I've been rejoicing in a new found way of thinking ever since. And when you truly decide that food is no longer to be used to combat emotions or comfort your feelings, it forces you to deal with your issues in other positive ways, leaving your journey unscathed through it all. At first, you may feel like a gunfighter without a gun, but after a while it gets easier. You become aware of how you're treating food, and you end up changing the pattern. We've all heard the phrase “Eat to live, don't live to eat,” but have you ever really thought deeply about that phrase? Or when someone says “it's got to be a lifestyle change,” sure, absolutely! But are we really understanding what that truly means? It means becoming a responsible friend of food. You don't have to be afraid of it anymore. You can make a new friendship with food that will benefit you the rest of your life---and the side effect? Losing weight and feeling great! Put up your steel curtain zone and defend your journey from the desires and abusive ways you've used food in the past! Make that decision that nothing, and I mean nothing is going to keep you from reaching your goal. A goal that isn't just about a certain weight, it's a goal that means complete control for the rest of your life. This journey is too important. You deserve this success! You deserve to feel what I'm feeling after the first 189 pounds has come off me. It's like a whole new world opens up to greet you. Drop the excuses, and the rationalizations that have made you feel justified in your past behaviors, stop blaming everything for your struggles, and get super honest with the most important person...YOU. Get honest with yourself, brutally honest about those behaviors...and embrace 100% accountability and responsibility for your own behaviors and choices with food. It'll change your life my friend. It really will.
Thanks for reading and following my journey from 505 pounds. I sincerely appreciate your support. Goodnight and...