Not “All for Nothing”
Today I’m seeing the purpose of my weight loss journey more fully. As a result of my long term, HARD CORE dieting and training, in preparation for competition for the last 3 years (seriously!), I end up with adrenal fatigue and a thyroid that is dysfunctional. I have spent many hours/days/weeks wondering what it was all for. Fast forward to the present and I’m helplessly gaining it all back so quickly. Any measures I can take to prevent the weight gain would hinder my adrenal/thyroid recovery. Helpless, hopeless, trapped feelings flood me most days. A lot of the time, I feel as though the last 3 years were a waste. After all I’m going backwards aren’t I?
This last week my daughter (12yr old in 7th grade) breaks down in a crying fit saying, “You don’t know what it’s like to be me in school! You don’t know what it’s like to be treated like crap every day!” My heart broke. Why would anyone treat this beautiful, extremely intelligent, generous, thoughtful, kind girl (yes, I’m biased, but it’s all true!) like crap!? And then the feeling of helplessness surges through me at the thought, “I can’t save her. I can’t fix this for her.” But you know what? I’ve learned everything I need to help guide her through this. 3 years ago I would have been useless to her, I would have been helpless.
Over 3 years ago I secretly, unconsciously, wanted to be fat. Fat was safe. Fat was non-threatening. Fat was without conflict.
I remember the day clearly. A trip to the grocery store had me seeing more about myself than I ever had. I had been losing weight, fitting in new clothes and feeling great! As soon as I stepped foot in the store several men took notice of me. I remember feeling uncomfortable to the point my skin was trying to crawl off me. I was probably glowing when I walked in, but before I left I had tried my damndest to shrink myself. I was glad to be out of there. When I got home I dove into FOOD. I remember eating a lot, and not healthy food choices. I was so confused! How can I go from glowing to sabotaging myself… in an instant?
It was this event that led me to realize how I found comfort in being fat.
- Fat relieved my husband’s jealousy and insecurities – avoiding any unnecessary fights.
- Fat distracted men’s eyes off me so that women wouldn’t shoot me death rays.
- Fat avoided conflict.
- Fat diverted conversations with people – helping me refrain from saying anything that made me look stupid
- Fat spared me from being rejected.
Once I saw that fat had its purpose, yet wasn’t anything beneficial to my well being, I had no choice but to confront it. But “it” really wasn’t the fat. “It” was my faulty beliefs and my avoidance of living IN my life! At that moment, there was no going back.
On that day forward I worked (and still work) on truly believing this quote from Marianne Williamson.
“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, ‘Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?’ Actually, who are you not to be?”
I can see clearly that losing the weight had a much bigger purpose than shedding fat. Not only am I transforming my own beliefs, but my experience is allowing me to help my daughters, my husband, and even my mother transform their own lives.
What I’ve learned from losing weight:
- Step out of your comfort zone, not just with training, but with the way you live your life! Only outside the circle will you find what you’ve been wanting.
- Embrace your mistakes and hardships, you will walk away wiser and stronger than before.
- Communication relieves my husband’s jealousy and insecurities – avoiding any unnecessary fights.
- Men continue to look. My husband is proud and I know if women are jealous that that is with them and I pray that they find a way to find resolve within themselves.
- Conflict is life. Conflict is necessary at times. It’s how you handle it that will determine if you thrive or not. (This goes for making mistakes too!)
- I talk… a lot! Sometimes I say stupid things, but I am not stupid. Occasionally I say the most brilliant things that end up being useful information to others.
- Rejection happens. It’s when we reject ourselves that it becomes damaging.
This week I’ve watched my daughter take time to care for her; she confronted her emotions; she stood up for herself; she even bravely accepted captain of the dodge ball team for a fundraiser at school! I’ve watched her face fear and hurt so that she can still participate in activities that she loves. I’ve watched her grow so much in the past year it warms my soul.
I sit and smile when I think… at 30 years old I started to discover what self-love really was, by 33 I was getting it – putting pieces together, and by 35 I am practicing it – living it more , yet still discovering it. But, because “I wanted to lose some weight”, my daughters are learning self-love and acceptance 15 years sooner than I did. It’s mind blowing to me!
Now I know, without a shadow of a doubt, there was a reason I’ve been on the path that I have. This keeps me more open to what lies ahead. It makes adrenal fatigue worth it (remind me of this later!)! And it leaves me wondering what mountain top I will arrive at when I heal. I smile at the possibilities.
Do you look for opportunity in your struggles? Do you find the success in unexpected events?