Invariably, as you drop the weight and start working on the outside you, you will be forced to work on the inside you. They go together and one doesn’t happen without the other. Trust me, I’ve tried, and hit the wall and fought to keep the weights I’ve been carrying because they have become a part of me, an extra appendage I’m not willing to cut off because it will hurt too much. Maybe you breathed in those asbestos-like fibers in childhood and your body has grown cells around them to protect you. It’s time to cut out that cancer as you get healthier. As you get stronger and drop the weight, you will be forced to evaluate the weight you are carrying that can’t be measured on a scale.
For me, the big weight that has immobilized me has been the fact that my father left when I was 15 and despite having 5 children, he only chose to keep in contact with two. And I wasn’t chosen as one of those two. This has been a failure that I have been shackled with for more than 20 years. Something surely has to be wrong with you if your parent chooses not to speak to you? I let this weight hold me down in ways that I hadn’t imagined- I let it permeate into my adult relationships, the partner I picked to build my life with, my self image, how I treat my children, even the career that I love. I selected a difficult-to-please man as my partner, a man that I have to work triple hard to satisfy and I’ve spent the last 2 decades trying to prove to him through how I clean the house, what I make for dinner, and even the money that I make, that I am worthy of love and that he shouldn’t leave me. I’ve let this weight of not being good enough force me to be the kind of friend who doesn’t say no, who always wants to help. I always thought that’s because I’m a good person but this weight loss has shown me that despite those lovely altruistic sentiments- that’s not the case. Every favor, every extra thing I do for my family, my friends, my students comes from a desperate need to be accepted, a panicked plea- please don’t leave me…I’m good enough for you to stay. And I’ve let those little favors drain me until there was nothing left for me.
Losing 60 pounds allowed, no forced, a transformation that was decades in the making- that needed to happen in the most desperate way. And while my muscles grew bigger and stronger from lifting and running, the most important muscle I’ve learned to use is the one that controls my middle finger. Things that would have made me bend or yield or bow now get that all powerful one fingered salute. Oh, you don’t like me because I didn’t have dinner on the table when you got home or because your friends couldn’t sleepover over for the 10th weekend in a row, or because I couldn’t find the hours in the day to solve 10 other impossible problems- one finger says it all…one finger standing up for me. Love me or leave me…I’m strong enough to be okay.
Cut the weight, drop the weigh, loose the weight but damn it- stop carrying it around and you will find that it is easier to run faster, to lift more, to make better choices for you. Don’t be afraid to throw that one fingered flag on any play that tries to reattach those weights….leave that shit on the field and head for the end zone unfettered.