The past two days have been extremely good. I've stayed within my calorie budget and exercised both days. I've started each morning with spiritual prayer and meditation. I've taken time and care in planning my food strategy too. I once again feel strong and confident. I feel driven in a positive direction.
I've been inspired, motivated, moved to tears and absolutely energized by the outpouring of support. I actually planned on returning to regular blogging sooner--in fact, shortly before my 41st birthday October 23rd I proudly proclaimed on facebook my return to regular blogging as a "birthday gift to myself." My birthday came and went and still I avoided this blog page.
I was truly scared of what I might find. Fear of rejection. Fear of being called a fraud. Fear of being reminded of some of my very own words, like "knowing too much to ever go back" and "nothing is off limits," among other writings and beliefs in the archives of this blog. It's important to remember something else I've said from the very beginning: I'm not an expert and I don't know everything. All I've learned along this road continues to evolve and with experience and more learning, becomes subject to modification. It's like transformation experimentation.
These irrational fears couldn't have been further from the truth. In fact, the opposite is the true reality. And this is where I realize something critical.
I needed this relapse. I needed this challenge. I truly needed to be humbled and shown the truth of my addiction once again. I needed to learn more. And I'll remain open minded and learn still more as we go. Where I found myself and where I find myself today was and is imperative to my growth toward my ultimate goals and dreams.
Words cannot express how grateful I am for your understanding.
In the middle of the last six months, I started to worry about the very real possibility of returning to 300, 400 or even 500 pounds. When you're feeling so lost and hopeless, it seems like the only possible outcome.
In the depths of a spiral, it's like we're divided into two opposite personalities. It's a classic good vs. evil struggle. If we're discouraged, depressed and failing to plan, this weakened state makes standing up against inexplicable compulsions almost impossible. Giving in weakens us even more until we're totally dominated. At this point, the hopeless feelings; the idea of never finding a way to once again grab control becomes oppressive, all consuming, desperate, suffocating and lonely.
If this is where you find yourself, you're not alone and it isn't hopeless, I promise. Reach out, first spiritually--in whatever way that means to you, ask for help. Then, reach out to anyone around you, far and near by giving your struggle a voice. It's incredible how quickly this can snap you back into the mindset needed to break free again.
Over the next however long it takes, I'll return to a healthier body weight and I'll do it with a greater appreciation and respect for the dynamics of food addiction and emotional compulsive eating.
I'll also work on being a little more compassionate toward me. Several have noticed how harsh I can be on myself. As one put it, "You treat others with so much compassion, yet you have little for yourself." Wow... They're right. This will be another well learned lesson along the way.
In the tradition of this blog, I look forward to once again sharing many pictures, videos and various other elements along the way.
Tonight, before I wrap this up--I wanted to share a couple of photos of me with very special people. My maternal grandmother (Edith Irene Anderson) passed away in May. I've written about her and posted pictures of her throughout the journey, so I wanted you to know.
My big brother Clarke Hodson also passed away in early September. Clarke was my big brother in the Big Brothers/Big Sisters program. If you've read my book, then you might remember the six or seven paragraphs where I described my relationship with him.
As I approached goal, grandma would advise "don't you lose another pound!" It was her loving way of saying she loved me unconditionally. And she did, at 505 or 230--no matter, I always had her love and could feel how incredibly proud she was of me. She would often talk about the time she enjoyed watching me sing on stage with the Poncan Opry Band. Even though Alzheimer's disease was robbing her memories, it was one of the few that remained.
I was incredibly honored when the family insisted I be with them during Clarke's funeral. I was such a lucky kid... The program could have paired me with anyone and I was fortunate enough to get to know Clarke.
Thank you for reading, goodnight and...