Early on, when I had just started losing the weight, I made the promise to myself that I would never forget where I started. Just like I did with this blog, haha.
Before I started losing the weight, I knew something had to change. I was edging closer to where I was at when I reached my estimated highest weight, based on the one thing I still had in the house from around that time. I hadn’t yet gotten to that point, but I knew it was only a matter of time if I continued down the road I was on.
One of my sources of inspiration early on in the game was a TV commercial, and an infomercial that airs late at night hawking a piece of exercise equipment that’s been around since disco was cool. This infomercial has people from all different backgrounds and histories singing its’ praises, all with that fine print at the bottom of the screen mentioning the basics: talk with your doctor, and that this piece of machinery was used in conjunction with a suitable calorie budget for their circumstances.
Each of the interviewees showed pics of themselves from where they started. Some of them had lost a few pounds, others had more than that, like yours truly did.
One of the interviewees was someone who had a lot of weight to lose, and described themselves before they started the program. They described themselves as “fat, overweight, and disgusting.” I’m paraphrasing it here, but that was how they described themselves. At the time I started, what jumped out at me was the results. This showed that it was possible for me. I knew it would take me a while before I joined the ranks, but I would get there, no matter what.
That infomercial aired the other night, and when it got to that interviewee’s part, hearing that person talk so negatively about themselves was what jumped out at me. Their progress was (and is!) impressive, no matter how you slice it, just like all the others I saw are. To be fair to this person, they preempted this by stating it was in their opinion.
Maybe some of you reading this either felt the same way about your old selves at one time. Maybe you currently feel this way. I know I did for a brief moment in my own weight loss mission. As I read about other people going through a weight loss of the magnitude similar to mine, I noticed that some of them felt similarly about their old selves too. From what I gathered, this happens from time to time, and it was more common than I realized.
But then I got to thinking one day. My old self was the one who made this decision in the first place. She knew she wanted better for herself, but couldn’t see the forest for the trees. She not only made that decision, she found a sustainable course of action, and more importantly, kept at it. Your old self did the same thing, and so did the people I saw on TV that night.
Moreover, why would I stoop to the level of a bunch of crappy people who declared me disgusting by virtue of the way I looked, even if it wasn’t in those exact words? I felt like to call myself that would have made me no better than them.
Now? I have nothing but respect and love for my old self. Disgusting or any of its adjacent words is the last thing I would call her, and I’m the last person on this planet who should ever call her that. She had enough of that coming from others, so why add to it?
If any of you have similar negative feelings toward your old selves, I hope you get to a point where you’re able to set these feelings aside soon. Seriously, knock that shyt off. Call yourselves overweight, out of shape, chubby, hefty, fat as a descriptor, obese, morbidly obese, whatever. But disgusting? No way, no how. That shyt won’t fly here. You’re nothing of the sort, and that includes the people I saw on TV that night. The only disgusting people I see are the ones who assign this and other negative attributes to other people based solely on the way they look.
Instead, I want that interviewee, and any of you readers out there who feel similar sentiments toward your old selves to understand that you were in a different place at the time. I was in a different (and quite frankly, dark) place with myself before. We were making the best of the hand we were dealt, in the only way we knew how, and going off of what we understood to be true back then.
Remember this, readers.
For the previous installments of my story, read here, here, and here.