Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Four Years...

When I think back on my life four years ago it almost feels like I am watching a home movie but of someone else’s life. That can’t be me. That person I see is so different from the person I am today. And I don’t just mean the weight thing. The weight loss thing is secondary, at best, to the story of transformation that has occurred between then and now.

If you asked me to describe the person I was back then I would probably say something like ‘I was someone that was scared, ashamed, hopeless, sick and was overwhelmed with the feeling of defeat’. Today, well today I feel the complete opposite way. I feel full of hope. I am confident, proud, scared at times (but for different reasons- like stepping outside of my comfort zone), and healthy. I am happy.

It’s not to say that I haven’t always lived the good life. I have always had so much to be grateful for; a good job, a roof over my head, loving friends and family.  I've never had to want for much, definitely never for a necessity. But back then, I took so much for granted and I squandered away this amazing gift (life) because I was weak (physically and mentally), I was afraid, for the most part I was clueless and because I wasn't my number one priority. I lost my identity and sense of self and was just aimless. And it wasn't just because of my weight, my weight just added to the mess. I had made a series of decisions in my life (career-wise, relationship-wise) that left me feeling less than thrilled with where I was. *No blame here (well, maybe a little blame on myself) because, honestly, at the time I always thought I was making the best, the right decisions, for myself and my family. And of course I am thankful now for those series of ‘missteps’ because they led me here. But my point is there were many factors in my life, in addition to or aside from the weight thing, that made me the person I was four years ago.

Like I have said many times before (sorry to sound like a broken record) if weight gain was the only  problem then weight loss would have been the solution. But for me, that wasn't necessarily true. Weight gain may have been an issue but I strongly believe it was a side effect of years of not giving a crap about myself. And why didn't I care about me? Because I was miserable over my circumstances. And why was I miserable? Because I felt like a failure in work, my marriage, pretty much life. And why did I feel like a failure? Because I had a job not a career, a marriage that was unsalvageable…etc., etc.

You see I can keep asking questions and get closer and closer to the root of the problem. And that root cause is what made me the person I was. I had so many issues because of those underlying problems (emotional eating, low self-worth) that even if I fixed the surface issues (or what I call the side effects) I would still have ended up feeling weak, scared, ashamed and hopeless.

I wanted to change my life. I wanted to be healthy. I wanted to be active. I wanted to be a participant in my own life. Most importantly, I wanted to live.

I needed to take a good hard look at my life and let the overhaul process begin. It was time to take ownership of where I was in life, acknowledge that I could not change the past and the circumstances that led me there, accept all the mistakes I had made, and move the eff on.

It was time for me to identify the areas in which I was unhappy and make changes to rectify that.

Bitching and moaning, although it is one of my favorite pastimes, wouldn't get me anywhere. It would never change anything. It was nothing more than wasted breath. I needed, for once in my life, to take some action.

Every choice I made came with consequences. Not all of them bad but sometimes they weren't great. I  had to learn how to make concessions and be ok with the fact that it couldn't always be exactly what I wanted all the time. I had constraints and I had to be understanding of that.

My transformation, my weight loss journey, my revolution or recreation, whatever the hell you want to call it, came because I finally had the understanding and enough strength to be introspective, to take ownership and to take action.

So when February 20th rolls around I get a chance to reflect back on that date in 2011 and what happened then that triggered all of this. Because of those changes and because of the realization I made in that moment and, of course, the hundreds of other realizations I made along the way, I am able now to be thankful for the person I am, the person I was, and the person I will be. I am still, and will always be, a work in progress. But I am now someone who can live (like actively live) and enjoy their life and can continue to make changes and alter my path in order to continue to do so. And that my friends, took four years to get me here. Yes, I may look very different on the outside but I am far and beyond, a million times over different on the inside. And that, to me, will always be the biggest and best transformation of all.

Thank you all for being here with me. Guiding and supporting me along the way. To those of you that have been here every step of the way- you will never know how much that has meant to me, you are my pillars of strength. To the people I have met because of blogging/social media- thank you for being my beacons of hope. I cannot wait to see what the next year brings. Thank you for being a part of this crazy journey with me.

Love and hugs,

P.S. I wrote this in my journal on February 20th (my actually four year blogiversary which is also the date I decided to take my life back) and was only now able to type it up to post. Sorry for the delay.