Transformation of Confidence and A Legendary Saturday Evening
My Saturday morning started with preparing omelets for our guest. I love doing this. It's funny, I use to pride myself on making the biggest, fluffiest, most calorie laden omelets you ever put a fork into, now---well, it's the complete opposite. Oh don't get me wrong, my omelets are still filling and incredibly awesome, they just have an amazingly low calorie value! I can make a 161 calorie omelet that will trick your brain into thinking it's at least three or four hundred. We enjoyed Southwestern Omelets this morning. Each one contained three egg whites (51 calories), a veggie blend of mushrooms, onions, and green bell pepper (15 calories), ½ ounce of thinly sliced low-fat part skim mozzarella (35 calories), and a few strips of Southwestern marinated chicken breast (60 calories). Salt and pepper to taste and there you have it...a 161 calorie feast of a breakfast that leaves you full and completely satisfied. The tricks? I use zero calorie non-stick cooking spray instead of real butter. I didn't use any milk this time. And the biggest difference: Seventeen calorie egg whites instead of seventy calorie whole eggs! Thanks again Linda S. for the egg separators, I use them everyday! Instead of getting “oohs and ahs” over the massiveness and cheesy oozeiness of my omelets, I get even more “oohs and ahs” now over the incredibly delicious, perfectly filling, and unbelievably low calorie count. I like that much better!
After breakfast we conducted a table reading of a screenplay Irene and I authored back in 2003-2004. It's called “Harlem To The Hills,” and it's a wonderful comedy with an awesome message. We forgot how funny it was until we had Rachel and Neal's reaction. They loved it! Seriously, they really did. We really didn't plan on reading the whole thing, but Rachel and Neil were emotionally involved with the characters, they had to know how it ended! So we did it all.
I mention that screenplay for one reason. You see, that screenplay has collected dust for nearly six years. We spent countless hours writing, rewriting, and rewriting a few times more over a period of a year to get that thing finished, and then we just let it sit in a drawer. Why? Why wouldn't we at least put some kind of effort into pitching this work? The answer: Zero self-confidence. Zero. Losing weight and feeling great makes us want to live, it gives us a confidence we've never known, it's shows us how we have limited ourselves in the past and how anything is possible in the future. When you're carrying around so much excess weight, it can completely strip your self-confidence and negatively effects anything and everything you do. The rewards of losing weight and finally feeling good about ourselves, positively effects everything we do, touch, see, feel, and think. There's no guarantee that this screenplay will ever see the silver screen, the reality is: very few do, even really good ones and that's not being negative—that's just the challenging reality screenwriters face, but you can bet it will not be for lack of trying. And someday, when time affords us the luxury, we'll write more. There's plenty to write about in the idea drawer of our minds.
Speaking of self-confidence, Courtney just got home from her friends house and proudly and confidently announced her break-up with her boyfriend. It wasn't a hard thing for her to do. The boy is a good kid, and she said he took it well. She's focusing on her right now. Her weight loss and fitness journey, her school work, it's all prioritized above a boyfriend right now. This is Courtney time. She's a smart girl. I don't know how we did it, raising these smart, level headed kids, but I give Irene the biggest share of the credit. We're very proud of them both. I hope Courtney's ex-boyfriend is really taking this well. I'm confident he doesn't read these writings, but just in case: It wasn't you, it was her. (by the way---I didn't care for the picture I found of you kissing her—eyes closed, really? What were you thinking about? Never mind---don't answer that.) Listen, Courtney is sailing my friend, sailing with a confidence she's never known. Through good choices, she's navigating toward the Courtney she wants to become, one day at a time, one good choice at a time. And right now that sail boat is just big enough for her and all of her hopes and dreams. Someday she'll get a bigger boat.
Irene and I spent the evening enjoying a couple of musical stars. The radio station I work for was sponsoring a concert at the Poncan Theatre tonight and I was asked to MC the show. Becky Hobbs was the opening act. Becky enjoyed tremendous success as a solo artist on the country charts, and superstar success as a writer of hit songs for the likes of Conway Twitty, George Jones, and Alabama. She's the writer of Alabama's touching song “Angels Among Us.” The headlining act was Wanda Jackson. She was recently inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland. She dated Elvis! It was so amazing to watch her perform. Even in her older years, she hasn't lost her voice---not even a little. She was a pleasure to work with last night and was as nice as can be. It was fun to introduce Irene to her and Becky. We took pictures, they're posted below!
I've included a head shot of me on stage at the Poncan Theatre at over 500 pounds. I tried to find some full body before pictures of me on stage there, and I know they exist, but the closest I came was a shot of me with dear momma in front of the marquee with my name “in lights.”
The director of the theatre introduced me to the audience and prior to this, he insisted on talking about my weight loss. I told him no. I didn't want him to mention it because this show wasn't about me, it was about these talented performers. I'm there to talk about and introduce the artist, not talk about my weight loss success. I wasn't performing, I was announcing. But still, Dave insisted. He strolled out in front of the hundreds in attendance and dropped the “he's lost 213 pounds.” Even though I didn't want him to do it, I must admit—The collective reaction from a crowd of that size is something very cool indeed. The thundering ovation was just short of standing. It was an amazing feeling.
During intermission I was approached by a nice lady who introduced herself as a doctor. She's a retired Psychiatrist. I hadn't met her before, and it was an honor to meet her tonight. She told me that she came to my stand-up performance in June of 2008 when I was at my heaviest and she just couldn't believe the difference in me tonight. She was heavy too, and shared with me that she could tell that I was never comfortable using so much weight related material. She was full of praise, and then shared with me some delightful news. She's lost forty pounds and is losing sixty more! I'm so happy for her. She really made me feel like a million bucks with her compliments. Thank you doctor!
Irene and I absolutely loved the show! After hanging out to chat and take pictures, we headed home for a late dinner and a night of running lines for “Call Me Henry.” We ended up hitting the hay at four in the morning.
I know that my weekends have developed a habit of posting the next day for the day before instead of the night of. I hope you'll forgive me. It's a product of this crazy schedule I've created. The wonderful thing is this: It's a temporary time crunch, seriously. After the schedule returns to a more manageable one, I'll be able to re-prioritize everything important to me, putting it all back in it's proper place and perspective.
The Diane—Fit To The Finish Interview is waiting to be edited and ready for “air” around Tuesday or Wednesday. It was a wonderful interview and I can't wait for you to listen! The promotional announcement is loaded into the divShare player in the upper left hand side of this page. I hope you give it a listen.
My mom asked me, “so—how was Frontier City?” Oh yeah! I forgot to mention that we changed the date for that amusement park adventure. We're now shooting for the 26th instead. I completely forgot that I had mentioned the 19th as the day of our trip. We postponed it about a week ago when we realized some serious scheduling conflicts, like M.C.ing the concert tonight. I'm so looking forward to that trip. You talk about freedom to live, freedom to fit in, freedom to enjoy ourselves. Oh my, this transformation thing is all about freedom! Thanks for reading. Goodnight and...
Before—On stage head shot at over 500 pounds.
My dear Mom and Me—Under the marquee with my name. Both at our highest weight a couple of years ago.
A random before picture-- Age 14—with Aunt Kelli. I couldn't have been too much smaller than I am now. That's my Vespa. No wonder I was a fat kid. All the other kids had bicycles, I had a motorized bike. Pedaling was for sissys...slim and trim sissys.
On stage tonight. Side view---I love it! I can't believe that's me up there!
Another stage shot from tonight.
Out of focus—but still revealing of my slimmer appearance.
Irene and me with recording artist and hit songwriter Becky Hobbs.
The two of us with Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Wanda Jackson!
Wanda Jackson's autographed picture.