Anyone who has seen me lately knows that I’ve gained weight. It’s pretty obvious. It’s not something I can physically hide. Emotionally, you ask? Sure, I can hide that way. I’m good at that. If I don’t talk about an issue or write about it, then it simply doesn’t exist. J Unfortunately, though, one can only hide for so long. So here we are … It’s been four months since I have written about my weight loss journey. At that time I admitted I had gained weight over the summer and I was going to try to rectify the situation. It sounded good. Really, it did. But here we are in that same place again …
I fell off the wagon. Hard.
While chatting with a very dear friend about my weight this week, she asked me, “Have you ever fallen off a real hay wagon? It hurts!” Indeed falling off the wagon – literally and figuratively – hurts! My weight gain over these last several months has bruised me and left me feeling pretty banged up emotionally. Those nasty voices in my head that had been nearly silenced by my weight loss success began to murmur, and the volume of their grumblings has increased steadily and proportionally with my weight gain. I’m embarrassed and at times, when I listen to those voices, I feel like a failure. I’ve wanted to hide and not talk about it or write about it. Ignore it. Pretend it doesn’t exist. But that method of “coping” hasn’t gotten me very far.
When I reflect back on my weight loss last year, I think part of my success was that I made it so public. I had public accountability as I posted my “new favorite number” on facebook each week and blogged about my relationship with food and its challenges. There was certainly a risk in being so public. People were watching – both the successes and the setbacks.
So I’m back to writing about this –not just for accountability purposes, but also as a matter of personal integrity. If I claim to be a transparent leader, then I need to share not only my successes, but my challenges as well. Not necessarily all of the gory details about those challenges, but I need to ADMIT that they’re there. There were times during the height of my weight loss success that some of my facebook friends shared their weight loss struggles with me. To honor their honesty, I need to be honest, too. There were others who said I was an inspiration … and to honor them, I need to admit that I’ve fallen off the wagon. Of course, I’m not doing this for others. If that is my sole reason for doing it, then it won’t work. I’m doing it for me – because I want to be healthy, I need to be healthy, and I need to care for myself as much as I care for other people.
When one has fallen and is hurt, banged up and bruised, standing and climbing onto the wagon can be a challenge. Sometimes one needs a helping hand or a boost to get back up there again. I’m grateful for that boost from friends and family.
So, to keep it honest, here are the numbers. I’ve gained back 49 of the 90 pounds I lost. Ouch! BUT … I’m still 41 pounds healthier than I was when I started this journey. 41. Yep, that’s my new favorite number.
Until next time (soon … NOT four months from now!), peace …