“I watch what I eat” came rolling over my tongue, carefully enunciated almost in slow motion, in response to a relative’s visible shock with-hand-over-his-mouth disbelief when seeing me recently after many years, at a family function. Immediately, my hand went to my mouth in disbelief that I had uttered those words…did I actually say that? A joke in slow motion was my immediate next thought…
I’m going to return to that conversation and how- it impacted on me and what it means to me, after I back-track on my recent past few months in further loosening the shackles that bound me forever…This blog has 9 unfinished posts from mid-July 2013, loads of half-baked thoughts put onto paper, mostly peppered with self-doubt, the same doubt that held me back from completing them is sadly the same doubt that imprisoned me all through the years, different, yet similar in its’ scope.
Experiencing life through my eyes on a 24/7 basis for those in my family has been and continues to be an eye-opener for me, delivering many lessons and at the same time abetting the frustrations that abound in sharing a lifestyle change where I am the only one within the family experiencing it and having success in it. Frustrations for them for my not taking their advice and acting on issues of relevance in my journey, frustrations about my public sharing, frustrations about the time spent on researching matters pertinent to my lifestyle change…just frustration, further cementing the opportunity to get away from it all and confirming that my trip to New York to celebrate my One year to Me journey could not have come at a better time – 2 weeks away from my home base albeit me missing my family and my family missing me immensely, made for a good change of scenery and long enough time to reflect and recharge.
The break graced me with spending almost every morning of the vacation in Central Park, sharing the American Summer with other international vacationers, staking out local hotspots drinking copious cups of sugar-free Americano’s hoping to catch a glimpse and a picture of a world famous celebrity, attending a dinner concert performance of a R&B music icon, spending long, unhurried hours in some of the worlds’ most prominent museums, attending a Broadway theatre performance. This opportunity is one that may never be repeated. It’s the opportunity that made me come full circle in my journey, doing and seeing the same as I did 3 years earlier, but at half the weight I was at at that time, now following basic food rules and not allowing food to rule me, made a difference that one has to experience to fully understand the impact.
It was mostly a disciplined two weeks away, I ate alright, but I ate right! Finding alternatives to being lured by the giant pretzel or the must-have corn dog and street corner hot dog with sauerkraut was an interesting time in discovering pure and real food in every borough visited. There was no excuse not to eat as I had become accustomed to in the lifestyle change. It also made for a voyage of discovery and actioned several purchases of healthy ingredients never to be found back home and engaging chefs and waiters in preparing my meals the way I enjoy them. It wasn’t forced upon me to eat healthily….it was a choice I made, the same way that I made food choices that encouraged my obesity. When someone boasts after a year in transition that they are changed and they display ways to show you that they have changed, believe them as it’s most often true!
So “I watch what I eat” held true meaning for me recently, attending two traditional functions where long-distanced relatives who hadn’t seen me in years mistook me for Headchef’s new wife…watching what I eat has made massive inroads in my mass reduction, in remediating my years of improper eating and gluttony and reconciling my emotions to understand the basic principles of healthy eating. It took the initial weight loss that also had direct remedial action on my chronic lifestyle illnesses to motivate me to reach a level of self-acceptance that my past had indeed informed my future and I had the choice to use that information to guide me in re-writing the fat chapters of my life into healthier, leaner ones.
In many ways my lifestyle change has been a journey of re-birth, awakening unlocking the potential that I had concealed for over 30 years, affording the opportunity to transform from an always obese individual into a new me, in both body and mind.
I come from a past where food has ruled me totally, to now observing the healthy food rules that have helped me recover from my food addictions. Eating REAL food has healed me, through trial and error I am becoming more aware of what I nourish my body with, and what food types work for me and what doesn’t. It’s been an education that I shied away from investing in for years by choice and in many ways my newer healthier choices are proving that food indeed does rule, finally to my benefit! And the learning continues….