May 12th, 2014 An Emotional Day
It's been a powerful day. It was great day. It was a long day. It was an emotional day. It was a day for gratitude. It was a day I'll not soon forget.
Returning to a regular writing schedule has been one of the best things for me. It's been the most empowering thing to reconnect with the purpose and passion and the bottom line accountability it brings. One thing I will promise you and me: No matter how this goes, it will be chronicled in these pages. In other words, when I fall, it will be here and when I soar, it will be here. In the past, if my journey was the slightest out of alignment and many times, completely off the rails, I would cease writing altogether. Call it hiding, isolating or whatever--I honestly felt what I had to offer during those times wasn't helping me and certainly not others. But the other side of the great days is important too. This isn't about perfection. This is about life. Real life. And real life isn't perfect. It rains sometimes. So there you go, no more sudden disappearances from the blogging world. I've made a commitment to me that is in many ways stronger than my initial weight loss "run." I'm not afraid of the accountability because I have nothing to fear.
Yesterday I shared a list of foods I don't trust myself around anymore. How could I forget cold cereals, milk and mixed nuts? With me, one bowl leads to another and one handful, the same thing. It's important to note that this list has developed from my own personal behavior, habits and track record. I'm not condemning any of these foods, I'm just saying I will not keep them around my living space. This list is something fairly new to me, after all, I was the one "eating what I liked and nothing I didn't," and I always promoted the nothing is off limits philosophy, the idea being to not villain-ize any particular food---but to change the behavior and perspective used while eating them. I still offer the "nothing is off limits" advice to anyone who is just starting and asking it of me. Why? Because I believe it's important to simplify this journey as much as possible in the beginning, then as you go your choices can naturally evolve for a variety of reasons. My food evolution has brought me to sobering truths about my addiction and emotional/stress eating, which are two different things. Now I know things about me that I had no way of knowing in September 2008. Also, when I post every bite of food I consume on twitter, I'm not saying anyone should eat what I'm eating. We all must navigate our own likes and dislikes, and over time, with effort and awareness, our food choices can evolve in a positive way.
I had an emotional afternoon, wonderful, but emotional. I received a private message recently asking if I would come and visit a young man at the Opportunity Village, a sheltered workshop for adults with developmental disabilities. I had met this young man once before at an outdoor festival. The private message shared with me that he listens to my radio show every morning and he talks about me all the time. The person sending the message told me it would mean the world to him for me to visit and she went on to tell me his favorite song. I agreed to visit and it was set for today.
I honestly didn't realize the level of emotion this meeting would evoke. I brought him a CD of his favorite song and with a smile, I made my way into the building where I was greeted and thanked by staff for coming. This young man is blind and bound by a severe developmental disability, the exact kind I don't know, and it doesn't matter. What I do know is the reaction he had upon hearing my voice instantly moved me to holding back tears. There was a big group of people all around as I mustered every bit of will I could to keep from breaking down right then and there.
This young man, so positive, so happy and so inspiring, touched me. He was giving me something far greater than what I brought to him. The visit we shared meant the world to him, this was very clear in every word he said, every question he asked and every touch of my hand. He made a difference in me today. By just being himself and so wonderful, He gave me perspective and reminded me to be grateful and to not take anything for granted, and to be kind, always. He asked if he could be on my show tomorrow (Tuesday) morning at 6:40am to talk about the Oklahoma Special Olympics State Summer Games coming up later this week. Of course he can. It would be my pleasure. What an amazing young man.
When I made it to the car, I pulled out of the parking lot crying harder than I have since I lost my brother in 2001. He reminded me of my little brother Shane. That was it. Connecting with this young man today instantly took my brain back to a time when I could share a conversation with Shane. I was Shane's hero too and I never really felt worthy of that admiration. I also don't think I ever properly or completely grieved over losing him. Back then, I stuffed those emotions down with more food.
The overwhelming emotions today brought an initial compulsion to eat, it did...I recognized it sitting in traffic, wiping my tears with my shirt. I was drained. Instead of eating, I decided to take a nap. I needed one.
I woke up 2.5 hours later. That was way too long for a nap. I didn't need that long of a nap, I assure you. Now I find myself up too late, again.
I started to prepare dinner and realized I was out of too many things, so I opted to dine at the Mexican restaurant not far from my apartment and make a grocery trip later, after my workout. I navigated that restaurant to the best of my ability, getting in and out for 546 calories. My strategy was solid. I counted out the serving of chips, separating them from the bowl. Then I asked the server to remove the remaining chips from the table. I ordered two crispy chicken tacos with the cheese on the side and a small serving of guacamole. I avoided the typical rice and beans, sipped ice water and ended up leaving over 100 calories on the table. (the 546 is the adjusted count)
After dinner I dropped in on my oldest daughter Amber for a quick visit and then it was off to the YMCA for an amazing workout on the elliptical. Thirty minutes may not sound like much--but it is phenomenal what it does for me.
I finished the workout and headed to the grocery store where I shopped while listening to my favorite inspirational/motivational songs. I did this for the first time recently and found that it greatly reduced the desire to waiver from my list. I ran into a couple of people I knew, so I took one ear plug out to talk, then put it back in and rocked my way around the store. It was a nice ending to a powerful day.
I'll be weighing again on Wednesday May 21st, then I'll have a weigh day update every three weeks. That works for me.
Thank you for reading,