Seeing My Old Self In The Eyes of Others and A Fight Worth Fighting
I had a remote broadcast from a large nightclub again, I've written about this place before. Tonight I had to once again pick up a 10 pizza order from Dominos. I usually spend a couple of hundred calories or so on a piece, but not tonight. After discovering how low cal I can make these personal pizzas at home, I'll probably never spend another calorie on a 200+ calorie single piece of pizza, seriously.
I people watch at these events. I can spot the insecure ones and the confident ones. I noticed a lady that was doing something that reminded me of the old Sean. She was constantly tugging at her shirt. She was overweight like me and very aware of how her shirt was clinging to her. I used to get made fun of for doing this very thing. I really felt for her. I could tell she was struggling with the whole scene in that place. But mainly struggling with herself. I so badly want to talk to people like this, but there's a time and place---and this wasn't one of them.
I experienced the same thing at Wal-Mart today. I noticed a man who had to be well over 500, if not 600 pounds. You really can't tell too much by what someone is putting into their shopping cart, but he seemed to be making some really good choices. I wanted to share with him my story, I so did, but I just can't. I've talked about this before. It's a horrible feeling to just walk on by, I feel like I'm leaving him behind, keeping the “secret” to myself. Whispering “good luck” and hoping he comes around if he hasn't already. I know Richard Simmons's policy about not approaching people unless they reach out for him first...and I understand that. But people know Richard. People don't know me. I'd never laid eyes on this man in my life. He has zero knowledge of my transformation---so how bad would it be to hand him a card with my blog address? How bad would that be? Some might get offended, sure. And some will toss it in the trash. But at least I can feel like I tried something. And maybe every now and then it works, it inspires, it starts something again that may have died a long time ago in someone. That ability to dream of a better life free of obesity is an awesome ability. When you're completely lost, it's a hard dream to imagine. But when you see a way out, when you see that ray of light shining through—It's just amazing what can happen. I just can't help seeing my old self in the eyes of so many others.
I've been doing a bunch of tough thinking lately about why some struggle so hard while others seem to be so solidly on their way. Why some say they “get it,” but continuously give in to the temptation that's trying to take this away. I think it's actually harder for people who are exceptionally smart. Let me explain: It's nearly impossible for someone to really learn something if they already believe they know. Especially when the solution has been broken down into very simple terms and easy to understand mental exercises. It can't be that easy, they might think. And so their search continues---looking for books and articles to break it down into slices that challenge their intelligence. Some people insist on complicating things. It doesn't have to be complicated. It can be easy if you accept that it can. Once you turn off the excuses. Once you accept 100% responsibility for your behaviors with food. Once you become completely self-honest about your consumption. Once you realize the importance of consistency. Once you stick to a lower level of calories. Once you commit to a real exercise schedule, once you do these things—it's almost impossible not to succeed. And yes, you have to fight. You have to bring out the fight inside and often times battle that little devil on your shoulder. If any of these vital components are not in place, it can seem very difficult.
You must not forget that I too am a food addict. You must realize and remember that I too spent my entire adult life until now, struggling the same way. I was out of control. So if you read my words these days and think Oh Sean, you make it sound so easy don't you? Never forget from where I've come. And realize that if I can get to this place, then it's not impossible for you to get here too. And you don't have to understand everything to get started. I didn't. I didn't know or practice anything but the very basics on day one. You might even say I was going through the motions at first. Along the way these simple truths came out about my past failures and all of a sudden things started making sense. I started to have a better understanding of why I always struggled before and why I was struggling less now. Epiphanies started happening, they're all documented...go back and read them. So if you're trying to get everything in order in a way that makes complete sense before you start succeeding, you're complicating the process. The things that must be rock solid from day one are your commitment to fight. Your resolve must be “iron-clad.” Your desire to succeed must exceed your desire to binge. It's that importance level thing again. Set it dramatically high. And fight for your life. Defend this journey from those evil thoughts within that threaten your success along this road. And find comfort in the fact that you will learn things and have epiphanies along the way that will catapult you onto different levels of understanding. But in the beginning you must fight. It's a fight worth fighting, it really is.
I was pulled over by the police tonight. I immediately tried to figure out what I did wrong and nothing was coming to me. Turns out my tag light was out. The officer gave me a warning. It was a fun experience because this same officer pulled me over four years ago for a seatbelt violation. I couldn't fit in the seatbelt back then. This wasn't the motorcycle officer from the early days of this journey, this was another that knew me and pulled me over a long time ago. He told me that he didn't recognize me at all. That felt good. And he pointed out how my license really needed updated, the picture is so not me anymore. When I get pulled over, that license picture always causes the officer to do a double take. It's not like I get pulled over all the time, but the couple of times it's happened recently---the reaction has been the same. It's a cool thing.
After that “wow” reaction, Irene sent me a text needing me to bring her something she had forgotten on her way to work. So I made my way up north to her job, walked in, checked in at the security desk where I was greeted by Margie. Margie knew me well at over 500 pounds. She didn't know me at all tonight. She started talking to me like I was a complete stranger “Can I help you sir?” and I replied “I'm here to see my wife.” And that's when she just about hit the floor. “Sean, is that you? Oh my---you look amazing.” The “is that you?” question felt kind of weird. Like she was talking to the old me trapped inside this smaller body. She just kept going on and on, she was shocked. And I was thrilled by her reaction. In the early days of this blog I remember dreaming about these future situations. It's so nice that those dreams have become reality.
I'm headed to bed and I plan on resting really well. It's like I'm playing catch-up every weekend when it comes to sleep. I didn't even mention my workout on the patio with the jump rope and the neighbor lady peeking at me through her bedroom window. I must have been too loud. She stopped looking once I noticed her. I wonder if she realized what I was doing? It was kind of dark and the rope is black. No telling what kind of crazy she imagined of me. I can only imagine her telling others, “and then I looked out to see what the commotion was all about and that guy was jumping up and down and grunting and moaning. Something isn't right about him.” Once again, thank you for reading. Goodnight and...