Wednesday, July 10, 2013
I AM NOT A ROLE MODEL (or am I?)
I have control issues. Those who know me are going, "duh, you just figured that out?" No (smartasses) I did not just figure that out, I have always been this way. Many times being a pseudo-dictator has worked for me. When I worked in security, I had to be in control of any and all situations. As a wife and mother, I have had to tone down my authority. Being 150 lbs. + overweight had me thinking I was in control. I put the tasty food in my mouth, I ate, and ate, and ate. Complete control, right? I had every excuse in the book as to why I was overweight, but it never occurred to me that I had lost all control. I had given my control away. Away to stress, away to sorrow, away to anger, away to boredom. Instead, I allowed food to be in control. My husband has a big mouth (weird segue, right?). In pride, he talks to co-workers, friends, and his clients about my weight loss. When he comes home, he tells me about the people he meets in his daily life, how they are on some crazy new diet. How they have tried everything to lose weight. How much they work out to no avail. He tells me about some of the guys on his forums that are trying new foods, new tricks, new products, to lose those unwanted pounds. Then he tells me how he tells them about me. How I lost the weight. The way I keep it off. How much happier I am. How much better I feel. Turns out that I have a big mouth too. To those who will ask, I tell. The lady at the supermarket who is passing out samples of cereal, or muffins, or peanut butter, listens patiently to me explaining why I don't eat what she is offering, along with a picture of me at around 350 lbs., with a waist measurement of five feet!!!! Then, as I walk away, she will be offering to someone else. That someone who is in a scooter shopping cart, with the cart filled with Weight Watchers entrees, diet soda, and fat free snack cakes. I become so sad. I want to shake them all. I want to pull that man or woman out of the scooter and beg them to stop killing themselves. Please stop killing yourself with a fork. This is a slow death. It is hard to watch. What makes it worse is that the dying individual has every intention of stopping, tomorrow. There seem to be plenty of tomorrows. I know. When I was a teenager, I was immortal, I had all the time in the world to lose weight. Then, as a twenty something, my tomorrows were fulfilled, but only for that short term party, wedding, special vacation. Then the occasion would pass, and tomorrow just wasn't as important. In my 30's I was consumed with work and raising a child. My personal needs had to take a back burner to the needs of my child. I would try the fad of the week diet (it was the New Mayo Clinic diet, kinda like Atkins). Suddenly, I was 40 and 41, with two small children to raise. Then at 44, I learned that my tomorrows were dwindling. I had high blood pressure, and was prescribed medication that I was afraid to take. I had clogged arteries, and was given the Xerox copy of all the (plastic) foods I was to eat. I had sore knees from carting around all that weight. I had strange pains in my chest. My tomorrows were gone. I was actively dying. Every cake, cookie, noodle, rice bowl, candy bar, was just speeding me along to dead. I would be leaving behind my best friend and husband with a huge responsibility, raising two small children and needing to help a grown autistic child. He also has his parents to take care of, they couldn't help with the kids. He would be alone. This recap of what I went through before I lost the weight is for Friend. You know who you are, Friend. Yes you. You, who thought "Wow, that's great! I wish I could drop a hundred pounds, but no diet works." "She's just lucky." "I wish I had that kind of will power." "Whatever, that worked for you, but it won't work for me." Friend, You can lose the weight. You can be healthy. I have no magic, no secret power. The only will I have is to survive. And yes, it's true, what works for me, may not work for you. Together we'll seek out the answers. Together, we will find the right question. Each person has their own question. I don't have all the answers, but I can learn, and if I can learn, so can you, Friend. Will you let me help you, Friend? I am just a person. I am a person who accomplished something great. It wasn't easy, but it wasn't impossible either. I may not be a role model, but I am someone who cares. All I ask is for honesty. We can lie to ourselves, and let our tomorrows run out, or we can be honest and see the dawn of a new day. I will be here, Friend.