A Dream Come True and A New Year Message
Well, lookee what we have here. The end of another year and the beginning of what will surely be another spectacular twelve months. What I experienced last night was a dream come true, and I'm so happy it happened in 2011, such a breakthrough year for me.
Last evening from 4-8pm, I sat at a table inside a bookstore while a steady stream of wonderful people flowed through to have me sign their copy of my book. The night was filled with emotions and somehow, I made it through without melting down into a puddle of joyful tears.
And it wasn't just joyful tears, also--compassionate emotions for the people described in the stories of loved ones who were there, buying my book as a gift to someone special, hoping that person might be inspired--praying their loved one might find themselves in my story, and through my experiences and eventual triumph, maybe--just maybe, their perspective might be shifted just enough, just enough, so they might find their own "click" within. Because it isn't found in my book. It's always from deep within each of us.
And hearing the stories and seeing the pain and fear in the eyes of these wonderful people wasn't the end. I had to then, process what I just heard, and write a personal message inside the book for that person. Several times, my bottom lip was quivering with emotion as I penned the message. Once or twice, I could feel my eyes growing moist with fluid emotion. I was there in the middle of my 500 pound self-imposed misery, I get it. I've felt exactly like what they're describing to me about the ones they love. And now, it's the greatest honor for me, to be asked to write them something personal, in hopes it will make a positive impression.
The truth is, it might. The truth also says, it might not make a shred of difference. And it's this element, this undeniable truth that will always bring out the most emotion in me. As people who generally love and appreciate those closest to us, we want them to "get it," and shoot, if we could, we would just do it for them. At my heaviest, I really wanted someone to do it for me too. But as I've learned, it can never come from anyone, any product or book, any magazine article or blog post, or anything other than from what you see in the mirror.
The only way for me to write my book and make the impact I was hoping to make, was to simply tell the story from the beginning and let each reader take from it what they will. And it's sometimes common, the reactions I'm hearing, and sometimes unique perspectives were gained. It all depends on where the reader is along their own road.
It might just be enough to shift their perspective, giving them a brand new way to look at what this journey is all about. There's peace, joy, reclamation, redemption, and many other wonderful elements. And, there's some not so wonderful elements. I'm sure you already know, change isn't exclusively unicorns and rainbows.
It can be painful looking in the mirror and realizing you're looking at the one person who can be your biggest enemy or your greatest ally. And once you start digging into your own experience, you suddenly see things you didn't before, and it can be emotionally overwhelming.
Now, nothing can stop you from achieving your dreams and goals. You've decided. Iron-Clad decision--CHECK Steel Curtain Zone--CHECK Calorie Budget--CHECK Simple exercise plan: CHECK.
My hope is, everyone who reads my book will see some of themselves and their experiences, and they'll recognize--acknowledge the power they have within. Because we all have it inside. The only difference is, some acknowledge and use the power they have to choose positive change and some find themselves buried in their condition and circumstance so much, they can't see it...like, it's covered up on top of a messy table. But it's there, underneath, always. And some of us have to dig a little deeper and go a little further down the road to find it, but we will find it if we want. And once you realize this power you possess, to choose change before change chooses you, suddenly weight loss will be one of the many things on a very long list of good things for you, made better, because you chose it for yourself.
Have a happy New Year, my friends. Thank you for reading this blog and thank you for buying my book! Your support is such a major blessing to me.
My New Years Resolution thought is a very simple one:
I never kept my New Years Resolutions in the past because I was fully expecting to go to sleep on New Years Eve and wake up on January 1st a completely opposite version of what I was. The struggle to maintain this different version of me would last for different lengths of time each year and it would eventually crash and burn, like I knew it would, but still hoped it wouldn't. Why did I think it was a good idea to magically change a lifetime of bad habits overnight, simply because the calendar changed to a new year?
Because that's what I always did.
But now I know. Now I know, these changes must be a gradual evolution of good choices, where limits are maintained, yet my focus and attention are strongest on the person in the mirror. And it doesn't wait until the calendar switches, or next Monday, or until after the holidays, or after the big party, or "someday," or after anything other than now.
It starts now, this second. It's not scary. It's living--finally living free from the self-imposed misery I called home for so long. A simplified, consistent approach to change...nothing complicated and nothing crazy. Real, honest, change.
Happy New Year and,
In promotion of the book signing, I scored an interview with some radio guy named "Sean In The Morning," and it was a blast, although he really was irritating me. This fun little concept was born in the brain of Team Radio owner Bill Coleman and fine tuned by Dave May and Me. I post it here for your listening pleasure.
My name in lights! What an awesome thing to see. Thank you Brace Books and More! Sorry to have driven by 173 times. I wasn't being strange, I promise. Okay, maybe a little...and perhaps it wasn't that many times, more like 16. That's still too many, huh?
I was happily surprised by the appearance of my mom, grandma, Aunt Kelli, and Uncle Keith!!! I didn't know they were coming to the signing, I swear...but I should have realized, the chance of them missing it was about the same as me missing it. Zero percent. Kelli took some wonderful photos! Cathy Cole did too--and I'll be getting those back from her very soon! Great shots, thank you both, Kelli and Cathy, for your photo talents!
With Mom and Amber
My daughters--so precious---wow. So happy they could both be with me for this monumental moment!
My girlfriend Kelly and Me. We absolutely dig one another. ;)
A wonderful woman buys a copy--me signing hers. Thank you, my friend!
Grandma and me. Grandma, my dear sweet grandmother--It's another dream come true having you with me at this event--I love you!
With Kelli Dee, or as I called her when I was a toddler, "Kelgee." She may be my mom's sister, my aunt, but we were very much raised like siblings.
Kelly and my girls by my side on this big night!
You can order the book from any bookseller (if they don't have it in stock), or Amazon.com, or directly from my website www.transformationroad.com and Brace Books and More still has signed copies available from their site or store: www.bracebooks.com
If you haven't sent me a friend request on facebook, please do! My personal FB page is:
My facebook page for the book is:
More exciting events are coming in 2012--Including a book tour (dates will be announced), more speaking events and book signings at YMCA's and other locations, and some exciting updates from my website---as we transform www.transformationroad.com into a must bookmark internet destination!