Friday, December 23, 2011

Day 1,201 The Way We Were and What's Changed: Christmas Weekend Eve

Day 1,201

The Way We Were and What's Changed: Christmas Weekend Eve

Holidays like Thanksgiving and Christmas were always days where my abusive relationship with food faded from obvious and into "normal," or "accepted" behavior. Like a free pass to come out of the corner and just be me, in the name of whatever special date was on the calendar. I didn't have to hide my excess on these special dates because it was/is the norm in our society, and that's why I loved these red letter dates so much. My life revolved around food, so a day where everyone accepted this culinary "celebration" of sorts, was delightful to me. I could just be me--Eating, drinking, and being merry--and then, eating some more, and some more,, "Sean sure loves those cookies!" Yes, yes I do...and eating a half dozen at a time wasn't anything to hide on this day, because it's what we do. We're celebrating. Pass the pie, please.

I lived for days like this. Pecan pie with whipped cream for breakfast, why not? And the snacks, oh my goodness, the snacks were everywhere! And let's go get more! Can someone say "Cheese ball!!!" Say it with me, "cheeeeeese ball!!!" The port wine or sharp...just get both, and an extra just in case. Give me a sleeve of crackers, a knife, and a cheese ball and watch me delicately spread the joy all over the Ritz...This was living. Egg nog!!! Did we forget the egg nog?? I don't want to hear how insanely ridiculous the calorie count of egg nog is--I can taste every glorious calorie in this thick holiday concoction--ooh, and, that's amazingly delicious.

It was normal for me to fantasize about what and how much I would consume. I was planning. My day was: Eat, eat, nap, eat, eat, eat, watch TV, nap, eat some more and pile it high...and hey, who wants this last piece of pecan pie? Too late, it's on my plate now.

I was loaded with holiday cheer, sporting a big smile as I would dollop a giant mound of Cool Whip on my third piece. Okay, my fourth...but seriously, who's counting today? You know what I want? Gravy!!!! Give me a bowl of potatoes and gravy, I'll sip it like a fine wine---wow, love it!!!

In the blur of my accepted, "normal" holiday feasting...I rarely noticed or cared about anything else. Visiting with family and friends...sure, as long as it includes more food! Hey...Uh, You think mom has some more of her prescription Zantac? I hope so! We should pass it around the table--better, let's put out a little Zantac bowl next to the stuffing. Hey--we don't want to feel any pain today--Thank you Zantac 150, we love you!

On the eve of my fourth Christmas after choosing change, I have to ask...What's changed?

What hasn't? I guess I should be more specific.

Q: Will I still enjoy my favorite holiday foods?
A: Yes. But I will, in reasonable portions at appropriate times.

Q: Will I pay more attention to the people or my plate?
A: The people I love. The food on my plate will be good and enough. But I can never get enough of the people I love and cherish. I want to know how they feel, what they're doing these days, what excites them, what troubles them---how do they feel about the changes in their life. These are the important conversations, far greater than, "Who wants to do Redi-Whip shots??" And "Anyone gonna take the leftover gravy? because seriously, that's some heavenly gravy don't ya think? Heck yeah it, and on those homemade mashed..."

Q: Will I exercise?
A: You know, it's funny. Had you asked that question five years ago or prior, you would have received a puzzled look followed by laughter, followed by a joke or two about how..."the only exercise I'm getting is from walking back and forth to the buffet line!" Now--It's a crucial element of a day like Christmas. A walk. A very simple walk. Something, anything will help aid digestion and make me feel incredible...and if I can recruit other family members to join me---well, that's awesome!!! This Christmas--The Anderson Family Holiday 5K at Boomer Lake in Stillwater is on!!! I wouldn't dream of missing it. Like a tradition---eating, napping, football, and a 5K...

So what's changed?

The focus. The perspective has shifted to the most important joys of the season. I'll still enjoy the tastes I love in a reasonable and portioned way--But above all else, I'll enjoy the people I love in a most wonderful and joyful way. Wow...I can't believe I was missing the most joyful part of past holidays. I didn't know what I was missing, I guess. Family, friends, love, and laughter...Yeah, I'll take three extra helpings, please.

Merry Christmas and,
Good Choices,

I recently released a couple of videos from the Sikeston, Missouri YMCA speaking event---If you didn't have a chance to watch them on my facebook page--here they are:

My book "Transformation Road" will start shipping on the 30th! I'm thrilled to finally have the book in hand. Well--I'll actually experience that on Wednesday the 28th--having it physically in my hand. I might need tissues...It's been a long time coming, my friend.

Signed first edition copies are available from me directly on my site:

My first big book signing is scheduled for December 30th from 4-8pm at Brace Books and More in Ponca City, Oklahoma! Very cool!!!

If you haven't sent me a friend request on facebook yet--please do! We have lively discussions nearly everyday concerning various dynamics along this road many of us travel. You can find me here:

And the special facebook page exclusively for the book is:

By the way---I just went "live" on!! Yes--very cool---I think I'm officially an author now---because my book is setting in the top 100,000!! Nice start, very nice!

Amazon has it listed as "in stock," so theoretically, you might be able to hold it in your hands before I get the chance.


  1. Several months ago, I quit buying syrup (for pancakes) because I know better than keeping tempting foods in my home and because it has 220 calories for 1/4 cup (and seriously, who has 1/4 cup on their pancakes?)

    Yesterday, my kids were getting into the holiday mood and sadly, the associate junk eating with it. They asked if we could PLEASE have pancakes with syrup. I gave in and bought a SMALL container of syrup and I also made sure it wasn't my favorite brand (Griffins is my fav). So last night for supper I ate a normal (small) portion of pancakes with 1/4 cup of syrup. I had the calories remaining for it and it was good. Not really nutritious, but tasty.

    This morning, I saw that syrup and the thought crossed my mind that I should have pancakes AGAIN! But.........NO. That is not how a healthy person eats. They do not have pancakes every day. And I am a healthy person now. So, I poured my kashi cereal, chopped up my banana and read your blog as I ate my breakfast-----and I'm glad that I can read it and feel good about the choice I made.

    Holidays as a healthy person-- I'm loving this! I haven't had a gain in 13 weeks. I'm not going to mess that up just because of an overabundance of available sweets. I already know my mother will probably say "Amy, it's Jesus' birthday, for goodness sake--and here you are not celebrating". Really, I think Jesus would be more please with my not being a glutton!

    I really look forward to getting your book in the mail. Yay! ~Blessings to you~

  2. oh good sean...because when I checked yesterday it was out of stock, but you had three nice reviews! Even better than going into Christmas knowing everything is different is going into Christmas not even thinking about the fact that you are already overweight and feeling a secret twinge everytime you eat something you 'shouldn't'. Great post.

  3. Hey Sean... just thought you'd like to know the link you gave here for your books Facebook page leads to a notice that says "this page doesn't exist..."

    Have a most wonderful Christmas!

  4. I'm definitely going to look for your book!

  5. Oh, my dear friends--Thank you! Loretta--I can't seem to figure it out--but I'm trying to fix the links...Very strange!! Thank you for letting me know! Have a wonderful Christmas weekend!

  6. Merry Christmas Sean! Have a great one with family and friends. I know you will.

  7. Ryan--after you read the book, you'll realize I wasn't very successful for a very long time before now. I've been on the bottom, my friend---struggling---feeling hopeless and helpless. The success I'm enjoying today has been a long time coming...and it's never perfect---and not everything I do will be successful, and that's okay. I'm happy with who I am and what I do. Merry Christmas to you too, my friend---and thank you for your support!

  8. Sorry Ryan---after clicking on your name, it revealed you as a spammer--selling HCG products. I'm not about that stuff, Ryan. ;)

  9. Telling all I follow! Happy New Years! Be the designated dieter! LOL

    Amazing family you have! Boomer lake 5k and more! You rock.
    congrats on the book!
    It is refreshing and inspiring to come here. I recently read the NY Times article called "The Fat Trap" and it is a bummer. You are the anti-Fat Trap.

    I love how you are active on your blog still and had a good morning chuckle on how you deleted the spammer, but was nice enough to say you are sorry. Amazing guy you are!


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