Shine on!

shine-on

I was on Weight Watchers Connect last night when I saw a post by a woman who noted that she lost 50 pounds, but no one at her job had noticed. I could be wrong, but it seemed that her mouth smiled a little, but her eyes didn’t.

I awoke thinking about her this morning, because I wanted to hug her! I wanted to hug her, because I know what it is to be overweight almost all my life. I wanted to hug her, because I know what it is to be overweight and then finally summoning up the courage to admit that it’s time to do something about it such as signing up for Weight Watchers. I know what it’s like to make that commitment to drive to meetings every week – even when it’s raining – even during the weeks when you know the scale is going to show a gain. I know what it’s like to languish in a sedentary lifestyle and then learning to talk yourself out of bed at 5 a.m. to drive to the gym or to take a walk in 30 degree weather. I know what it’s like to eat 1 slice of your momma’s famous red velvet cake when you want to eat 5. You know I could go on here!

I could be mistaken, but I saw what looked like pain in her eyes, and I felt it. I felt it, because I’ve been there. I’ve been in that place where I’ve lost a substantial amount of weight and didn’t receive the “Way to go!” or the “Great job!” or the “Congratulations!” from the people I felt should have at least given me a verbal pat on the back if not a physical one.

I’ve received tremendous support this time around – from my husband, who simply began asking me if I wanted to go to the gym with him but NEVER mentioned a word about my weight despite the fact that I was nearly 70 pounds HEAVIER  than I was when we got married. There’s the support that I receive from our Elijah, 8, and Miranda, 7, who hug me and say “Good job!” when I lose weight, who take walks with me and who do Just Dance with me – so much FUN! There’s also the support I received from family and friends on social media sites like facebook and from people I will never meet such as those on Connect, Instagram and Twitter.

And to the woman who posted that she lost 50 pounds but no one at work noticed, trust me, they NOTICED. I’m guessing that for any number of reasons, some of them haven’t been able to bring themselves to say so. For some it could be that they need to lose weight and haven’t taken the steps to do so. For others, there could be another area of their lives where they need to apply the same courage and dedication it took for you to lose 50 pounds. If I were a betting woman, I’d wager that their silence has NOTHING to do with you and EVERYTHING to do with them. I’m not saying they’re bad people. I’m just saying we all have issues, and sometimes we let those issues dictate how we respond to other people’s successes.

When I read in your update that you lost 50 pounds since August, and I started Weight Watchers the last weekend of May, and I’m still working on reaching 50 pounds lost, I had to mentally snatch myself before I began to feel “some kind of way.” I understand that everyBODY is different and so is every journey. Wouldn’t we all love it if we could lose weight overnight, but then we would miss the journey and all of the wonderful lessons that come with it like: I can go from living a sedentary lifestyle to enjoying walking, riding a bike for the first time since childhood, going to the gym for the first time at age 46 and learning to play tennis! I would miss the valuable lesson that I don’t have to clean my plate – that I can put it in the fridge and it won’t go anywhere – it will be there tomorrow for me to enjoy. I would miss the extraordinary lesson that because I’ve tackled the weight and won, I can tackle ANYTHING life brings my way!

So to everyone who is fighting the battle of the bulge, I say shine on! When no one is cheering you on, shine on! And in shining on and keeping on NO MATTER what’s going on, you WIN!

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