The People Connection

On my vacation, I’ve realized that I’ve had a bit of a real writing block, however I do want to talk about the people that we connect with on a daily basis. Maybe a spouse, children, just society in general even. I feel a certain connection with people on different levels with the different things that I do.

As it is known, the CK Project is probably the biggest thing that I connect to people with. I mean my weight loss journey is something that people have taken notice of. As a matter of fact, I find people who I don’t even know have been watching the journey. I was able to go to a class that my trainer Sam teaches about Wrestling and Grappling and one of the parents there told me that they had been keeping up with my journey on Facebook and said that I was an inspiration. While it’s not the first time that I’ve heard that being said. It feels as good as the first time I heard it.

I feel humbled that people are watching me. I know that I’ve got friends who are supportive, but to meet random, and complete strangers say that is awe inspiring. I hope that the mental health aspect will help people as well. The subject of mental health is still considered an uncomfortable subject for most people, so maybe those people aren’t as quick to speak up? I’m here and what to know that it’s helping someone in that way.

The physical health aspect of things have also helped me connect with even more people though. I’m in touch with people that I would have never thought I would become friends with. I find that my networking is taking me to connect with people over in the United Kingdom, as that wasn’t something I would have ever expected. It’s cool that I’m meeting people with such diverse cultures and backgrounds. The beautiful part is that we are all there to help support each other.

If you’ve been following along for a while, then the words that film school was the best decision of my life. It’s true, not only did it give me a purpose in life, but it also has helped me connect even more with people. I’ve found friends in the filmmaking community, who’ve become supportive of not only my filmmaking goals, but some have even shown the support in my weight loss journey as well. These people are amazing talents, and I look forward to working with each of them at some point in the future.

I feel that the creative process that I’ve gone through with my filmmaking has bounded myself with the people I work with. It’s defiantly a different kind of connection, as those I’ve been friends with before hand have been pushed within their own creations. My buddy Curtis is a talented musician, and was a hard worker when we were doing Nash Gray(2017). Not only did he play Benny, but he constantly worked with me behind the scenes doing whatever I needed. I’ve also asked for him to write me a song for an upcoming project, Unexpected Side Trip, and I’m not going to lie, it’s really good. He told me that he hates that I can push him to reach uncomfortable spots to bring out some emotions, but I think that’s something that makes us better creators in the end. Going to those emotions that we don’t like.

Being a geek about different things has always giving me a connection to others. I remember that the first instances of this was when it came to professional wrestling. Now, it comes down to comic books and movies. It’s amazing how I connect with complete strangers in that way. I have those kinds of interactions with the people I deal with at work as well. The fellowship at comic book conventions is always wonderful.

Going back to the CK Project though, I’ve noticed that there is a strong support for those dealing with mental health issues as it is. While it is considered “taboo” in society at general, once your story is spoken, it becomes easier to talk about. Others open up about their struggles as well, and that’s where the connection comes in. The mind is powerful, and it can be our greatest asset, but at the same time anxiety and depression can become our greatest foe.

The key to remember is that we’re survivors. Some people want to paint it as those of us who have suffered from suicidal tendencies, just want the attention. In my own experience, it was just that I needed help and I wasn’t sure how to get it. I think the connection to another person is something that is needed by most. That might also be why loners are usually targeted as being strange, maybe?

I love connecting with people. I’ve even connected with different social groups that I wouldn’t have ever expected. I used to have friends in the various groups and not really fit in with a particular group. That’s how I felt at least. I think that the weight loss journey and mental health groups are the place I have found the most value in.

This is the director and that’s a wrap.

 

When The Inspiration Hits

I’m not ashamed to admit that some of the topics I talk about come from things I see or hear around me. As a matter of fact, most of my podcasts end up starting out by conversations found in the groups that I follow. That’s my mode of operation; to pick up on a subject and go for it. Improve has always been one of my favorite things to do, and it seems to have done me well so far.

Being a writer, not only for blogging my experiences, but as a creative person who writes scripts for visual storytelling, I’m always looking to draw inspiration from other mediums. I’m about to do a series of blogs, vlogs, and podcasts addressing a subject that has recently been on my mind.

So, there was recent news that they were going to edit out a scene depicting suicide on a show called 13 Reasons Why(2017). Now this show was something I had put on my watch list to see at some point, but I’ve got so much to watch that this wasn’t even on the radar for me to see in the immediate future, until the news came out. While by the time I got to the scene it had already been edited out, my wife had found an unedited version online for me to see.

First off, I found the scene to actually not be as graphic as I was expecting it too. I’ve actually seen it done a bit more graphic in other movies, however this show is powerful. The subject of teenage life and the trauma that can occur has taken me back to my own days in high school, hell in school generally. It’s taken me back to conversations that I’ve had with former classmates, and even experiences that I’ve had as a parent.

I’m speaking on this as I know that it happens to deal very much with mental health, and physical health, bullying has been a factor in my own weight gain as a youth, and I feel that as apart of what I’ve been doing over the last few years, that this is just another subject to talk about, and maybe help someone get through their own struggles with it.

The fact that I still witness bullying in other areas of life, is actually sad. I figured that we would have been done with this after school, but to see it in various aspects of the adult and professional parts of life makes this topic kind of a hot point for me. We’re actually going to do a bit of research to help with this subject, and I’m feeling that we might take this show, an episode at a time and touch the subjects that each episode goes over.

Again, do to the extreme sensitivity of this subject, we feel that a bit of research, besides personal experiences will help us to justify our subject matter, though I can tell you that I had a tough time with bullying in school, and as I’ve become more self-aware, I see how it has influenced my life.

This is the director, and that’s a wrap.

Giving Into A Bigger Cause

As I sit here, I’m reflecting on all these past memories that come up on Facebook. I find where I’ve had motivation, and I see where I lacked the insight that would later help to develop the person that I would become. Seeing the first real developmental moments of starting the weight loss process with Weight Watchers in 2011. Seeing how I had started the CK Project as a way to motivate myself, and hold myself accountable. Then to watch it inspire people along the way.

It was an important time in my life, and I wasn’t even sure that it would turn into something more. I always that that the CK Project stood for the Chris Keeling project, hell I originally called in Project Keeling. I knew that I wanted to keep a record of whatever process that I was going through at the time. Little did I know that I would give into negative thoughts, and have a meltdown in which my life would take an unexpected turn.

Two years into trying to become physically better, my mind would shut down, and the CK Project was dead. It was just something that had gone to a back burner, and ignored. As I look back to this dark time period, I realized that I would respond more to negative things, and lunge out in a defensive manner. It came down to a “bring it on” type mentality, and in person, I wasn’t prepared for the things I would have to come to terms with.

I was angry, and at the time I felt rightfully so, because people get mean, nasty, and entitled. I didn’t have a way to vent out the frustrations that would come out of these daily interactions. I would internalize every ounce of negativity, and it would be mirrored back towards my family. Towards myself, I had been stuck in a spot that wasn’t pleasant. I felt trapped, not just professionally, but personally. What made things worse was I wasn’t any good to myself, and I resented being with my partner. We had issues, and it was more because of the fact that I didn’t want to deal with the situation. I just wanted to shut the world out, and be numb. Often times, I think that’s the way people deal with hurt, and trauma, is to go to a place where they attempt not to feel the emotions and pain that comes with these high pressure situations.

It took another major event in life to get my attention and make me realize that I needed to snap out of the dense haze of self loathing. Some people consider it “divine intervention”. This event had caused me to look at myself, and realize what it was that I needed to do to get better. If there is one thing that is difficult to master, it’s taking  a critical look at oneself and looking at one’s flaws.

I needed to prepare myself in ways that I knew had to bring me back to a presence that I hadn’t really been in mentally for a long time. I made decisions to take back my own life, and had to realize that part of my problems where that I didn’t have purpose, and that I needed to learn to react better to the situations in life.

The change was a hard and slow process to go through. I had to learn to not hate myself, and I needed to find that relief of not feeling so trapped. Finding that purpose in life, and how I wanted to be represented to others were the start of my healing.

I’ve always had a good heart and I loved to help people, unfortunately, that’s also lead to a lot of heartache and caution when interacting with others. I find that new relationships that develop often times come with a bit of paranoia when trying to figure out what angle these people are playing. Most often it comes up when it comes to actually needing assistance in some way. Myself and my family have been hurt by this more times then we would care to admit.

Back to the subject at hand; there were so much emotion, and loss that had happened in life that I realized that I needed to do something. I more than ever wanted to share my story in hopes that others wouldn’t feel alone when suffering in depression. I started telling my story, and doing mini-blogs on Facebook, and this time of year is when they all start to appear on my memories. It’s made me realize that everything happens for a reason. The good, and the bad, it’s in the balance that people grow.

Going to school and finding WordPress was a blessing. It was about two-years after I decided that I wanted to talk about my mental health, and it presented me with a platform that I could get my story out to more people. It was easier to spread out in my various platforms of social media as well.

As I started to present this as the new and improved CK Project, it’s funny how it went back full circle and went back to my weight loss journey as well. Seeing that my physical and mental health are very intertwined, has allowed me to connect better with people. It’s allowed me to form more bonds with others, because my story isn’t that uncommon.

It’s strange to think that mental health and obesity are both subjects that are taboo, and how much people judge on  those basis. I even know people who have a dislike for “fat people” while they aren’t exactly small either. Is this another form that goes with mental health? I think that I’ll have to go down that rabbit hole with research at another point in time.

Sometimes people regret the decisions that they’ve made in their past, and often times, “if I could only do it again, I’d do it differently,” are often spoke. If you asked me that same question, my answer would be no. I’ve been through those dark times at various points in my life, do I wish that I knew better than I did? Hell yes, but I wouldn’t change it. I think it took that last time to allow me to get my head right. I needed to get through that rough time, just so I could evolve. I’m better now, I’ve invested in myself, which isn’t something I would have ever done. By investing in myself, I’ve been given the motivation to help others, and I’ve seen what my helping others is doing. I get to watch these people I help, grow, and become better version of themselves.  To me, that’s one of the best gifts that I could think of.

I want to share a conversation I had at work the other day:

I was working with a co-worker, and we got into the conversation about God. I'm by no rights a religious person, but I do have a spiritual belief in a higher power. God, and my personal beliefs don't usually come up, anywhere but we started talking about the Bible. Act 7:48 (God) dwelleth not in temples made with hands.




It got me to thinking that if the body is the temple, and you fix it, and build it strong, is that why we feel better mentally? Or how about the fact that I also feel better spiritually? I know when I go out for my walks, it feels like my meditation. I feel closer to having a conversation with God, or even just the fact that it helps me talk to myself and sort out ideas in my mind.

Life is a puzzle, and I know that I’ll never have everything figured out. All I know is that I was put here to help people. If there’s anything I can do to help, please reach out and I’ll see what I can do. This is the Director, and that’s a wrap.

Dual Identity

As a child, I would play this game with my friends where I had a twin brother named Kevin. He was the cooler, slightly older brother, by twelve minutes, and he was liked. I’m not saying that I wasn’t liked, but Kevin seemed to give me a safe place as not to get hurt.

I was a sensitive child and was easy to make cry. Not only that, but I was easily pushed around, and I would get beat up, even by the girls. It was looked at as a sign of weakness, and would add on to the humiliation that I had already been enduring. At this time of my life, I was seven and this was the first time I had ever really felt that dreaded sense of loneliness, and the first thoughts of taking my own life.

I can’t remember if it was before this or just some time after that I started to pretend that I had a twin, but he felt like he was the best parts of me, and non of the parts that people seemed to focus on. He never manifested at school though, and living on a military base, there where biases about enlisted children, being one myself, on a base full of officers.

I never realized that classism was one of the first factors of discrimination that I ever faced. Oh and the fact that I was over weight contributed to others forms of bullying(I find writing about this gives me a reflection of things I never realized). Yet, being a target of bullying followed me pretty much my whole life.

When we moved away from Okinawa, Kevin kind of disappeared. I don’t know if it was that I thought that a new place, new beginnings mentality was in place, but I was willing to see where things would progress. On to the Black Hills of South Dakota. I got the nick name Okie, but coming from where I had been, I felt that it was something that I was being made fun of, and I didn’t like it. I was sensitive, and being on the defensive was always something I came up to know.

I had been in Rapid City for about a year when I was rejected by my crush, and being a kid, I was careless on my bike and with that I got into an accident and almost died. I had broken multiple bones, and suffered from severe head trauma. I was in a coma for about three weeks because of it.

Now, this is where things are unclear, because I don’t remember things very well from this time, but I don’t know if I was just being inattentive, or if I had another suicidal thought, but this accident changed me. I became a different person due to the trauma I suffered. My parents basically compared it to going from the “light side” to the “dark side of the force.” All humor aside, I became a far more cynical person. My humor had gotten different, and I reacted differently to things.

Now when someone suffers from a head injury, processing emotions and empathy become more difficult, and can at times be lacking(https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/mouse-man/201001/traumatic-brain-injury-leads-problems-emotional-processing). At the time I didn’t understand, but as I’ve recently seen my mom go through the same thing, I’ve been enlightened by this. 

Lacking the emotional reactions, explain quite a  bit as I’ve had troubles when it’s come to my own kids getting hurt at times. I’ve gotten better about it over the years, but now I understand my lack of reaction to these events.

So, I worked hard to get through my injuries, and I had to relearn to do basic things, like going to the bathroom, I also had struggled to learn how to do class work because I would process things slower. I also had to relearn to walk as I broke my pelvis in two spots, and took a chunk out of my femur bone.

I had viewed my life as I was still quite unpopular, and I struggled, because all I had ever done my whole life was wanting to fit in. One summer, a friend suggested that I tell a little lie to help gain confidence, and I basically reinvented “Kevin”, only this time it was my story. I told one little lie and it helped, then I told another, and after a while I got popular, and too be honest, high school at the time felt good to be on top, but I really didn’t like who I became, and how I treated the people who really did care about me the most.

After high school, we moved to California, and I decided that I was going to be who I was and that honesty was the best policy. The funny thing was, that I had become the best of myself, and my alter ego. That’s who I am today, and with the events that have sculpted my life, I’m just getting better every day.

This is the director, and that’s a wrap.

See the Stage, Hear the Critics

It’s funny, because I just did a podcast about this very subject tonight, as well as a few unexpected things in the process.

I’ve been asked about the backlash of sharing my mental health struggles, and how I deal with those things. I also get asked if I’m ever afraid of how being so open about them could negatively affect my livelihood, and how I would react to that as well. The simplest way to start, is to say that I started to share my story and struggles in hopes that it would save a life. That’s where it all started, and I had the duel purpose of helping me sort out myself.

People don’t like to talk about mental health issues; it’s not something that people can see, usually, and honestly, it’s not something that people who don’t deal with it can understand. Yes, I’m aware that having come out and say that I’ve had a few suicidal episodes, that it has opened Pandora’s Box, and yes I understand that it can, and does bring some harsh judgement with it. Truth be told, I’ve yet to deal with someone who’s actually had something negative to my face about it. Is it because we live in a world with mature adults, full of understanding? No. Could they be afraid to talk to me about it because they think I could go crazy on them? That I can’t answer.

I do notice that there are people in the professional world, who seem to lack a bit of maturity when dealing with a co-worker, like at Wal-Mart, and I remember observing the same when I worked at Kmart, so before anybody thinks that I’m mentioning specific people, I’m not. I also notice that there are few that actually have the courage to say something to somebody’s face. Society doesn’t tend to like one-on-one confrontation. In a way I guess that could be a survivalist way to go about the day, because you never know who’s having that one bad day that could turn into something far worse.

Back to the story at hand; yes, I’m aware that I opened Pandora’s Box, and to be honest I’m glad that I’m open about it. It’s given me such a wheel to start a dialogue with people who are afraid to speak up about their struggles with depression, and the other uncomfortable emotions that can go with that. I know that people tend to focus on the negative, but my story isn’t about where I was, it’s about how I survived. That’s one thing I think people should try to understand about me, I survived.

People have said that they’ve thought about taking their own lives before, and I know that it isn’t uncommon to have that glimmer even for a moment, and not taking that away from anybody struggling with those thoughts, it becomes a different story when it’s been reoccurring since I was seven. I survived, and I’m better than I was. So, I have no shame in the choice to be open about it, and I never will, again.

I had someone confide to me on messenger one time and tell me that it was nice to know that going through those grueling times I came out on top, and it had inspired them to seek the help they needed. There it was, the reward I got for writing about it, and talking openly about it, someone had sought the help they needed. That is exactly the reason I do what I do. People copy and paste on Facebook about doing buddy checks to know who they could talk to, or to show that they are an option. I stopped copying and pasting, and simply replay, that is why I do what I do. Those friends who I respond too already know what the CK Project is about, some of them where there while I was in the bad spots.

This is more than a copy and paste to me. By the time I was a year into my absence of work, seven people that I knew, or knew someone I was associated with had killed themselves. People will never know how bad I felt knowing this, I had distant family members pass this way, people I liked, and I felt worse because I had thought that way. This is why I do what I do, because I saved someone from over dosing on pills, and I was able to help talk them down and get them the help they needed. I felt like Superman. I felt like the figures I had looked up to my entire life, the characters who had helped me build the strong ethic and moral code that I live by. I saved a life that day.

Sure people are critical, and they think that I should keep my “issues” silent, but why would I ever do that when I saved a life? Can the critics honestly say that? Can they say they chose to listen and help someone off the ledge of the building that could have costed someone their very essence in this world? This is why I do what I do. This is a purpose that I honestly feel I was put on this Earth for. I’m here to help and inspire people, and that’s what I’ve been doing for the better part of eight years now. That way when I saved the first person from making a bad decision.

Everything else came along as I grew and evolved, even when I had my break down, all that ever did was make me stronger in the end. It took that period at “rock bottom” to help me develop what I needed to be motivated, and take initiative to find out who I truly was. While I don’t have the powers of a comic book hero, my gift is that I’m wiling to stand up and be brave enough to reach out a hand in friendship and guidance. Being someone who’s gone through hell and come out the other side, has given me a bit of insight and understanding on the struggles in life.

I think it’s human nature to be self destructive, and it takes so much work to get out of that habit. So, I’ll stand here and say it as loud as possible, I’m Chris Keeling, and I’m a survivor of having self hatred and self destructive tendencies. How can I help?

Connecting Flights on The Weight Loss Journey

Sometimes, we get wonder what it is that puts us on this earth and wonder what’s our purpose here? For as long as I remember, I’ve always wanted to entertain, and make people happy. As I got older and matured, I was fascinated with the idea of causing different emotions by my performances. There was something that was always intoxicating about the power of influence.

I’ve also always wanted to help people, sometimes that ended up being a fault, because not everyone wants help, and they’d throw it in my face, or take advantage of my good graces. So, I’ve become cautious over the years because of it. The expression of experience is the best teacher is very true, almost unfortunate to a fault at times. I’ve had a lot of lessons taught to me because of this.

Sometimes, these lessons come in unexpected ways, and lessons that I wouldn’t expect happened. I had a time where I felt like I stopped growing and learning, and it caused me to be unsatisfied. In all honesty, I would love for Luckey Bom Films to be the thing that takes me where I want to go in life, but I think the divine plan is to have The CK Project is where I’m truly going to make my mark in this world, which is just as worthy to be an end goal.

This has been an incredible journey so far, and I’ve met some of the most inspiring and beautiful people by taking this journey, by sharing, and supporting others who are trying to be more healthy. I think one of the most interesting things about the weight loss journey is that there are many ways to get there, and there is no one right way to get to the ultimate goal. I think that those who lose the weight without weight loss surgery is awe inspiring. That’s not to take away from those of us who had the surgery because it takes just as much work to lose the weight, the surgery is just the “tool” to help get the jump start on the journey.

Being involved with the weight loss community, especially for those who had the surgery. I’ve had networked with all these people through Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and these people inspire me to do better. The voyage has made us a type of family, bonded by the fact that we share similar experiences. For some of us, the weight was gained because of depression, and that’s why we appreciate what the journey has done for us. These beautiful souls still have  doubts that they’ll make it through the process. Hell, I have days that I think I won’t make it, and another commonality I see is that there are times we all view ourselves as the heaviest version of ourselves, and I’ve discovered that is something that doesn’t ever really seem to leave.

I’ve seen some people give up on the journey as they felt that they’ve lost all the weight they will ever, and sometimes that brings part, if not all the weight back for others. As long as people find their happiness, then I’m happy for them because it’s important to be happy. I still remember what it’s like to not be happy with myself, and the rage that came with it. I just know that I’m not ready to stop, until  I get to the ultimate goal.

I think the biggest motivator for me is the fact that I’m in competition with myself. I’m pushed by the numbers that I see, because I feel that in the least, I should be able to hit the bare minimum, and yes, I’ve not had motivation to get even the minimum some days. Having those lazy days is what makes us human, and I’m not ashamed. I remember making excusing as to why I wasn’t doing something, and again there are days that I find myself doing that, but at least it isn’t the end of the world. In that end, I do keep pushing myself to do better, and find ways to grow, even in ways I never expected.

Even if the weight loss journey has established me in a community, it’s even more amazing how much it’s effected the rest of my life. I find losing the weight and having a better self-image, has lead me to being a better parent, and husband. It’s helped me better in my creative endeavors as well. That motivation has shown me what I’m capable of doing, and I want to see how far I can take it.

To those whom I am in communications with in the weight loss journey category, I want to say thank you for the words of encouragement. I’ve enjoyed watching you in your successes and I feel blessed to be able to add to your support system. Nobody should have to go through something like this by themselves. There should be nothing but support and encouragement, because it’s the fertilizer that helps with personal growth. It’s a shame we live in a world where more people want to be “trolls” and tear other people down.

On a final thought: live, love, and speak your truth. Don’t ever falter from who you are, because that’s the bravest thing anyone can do. With that, I’m the Director, and that’s a wrap.

Fifteen Month Check-Up

I had my check up on March second. I was greeted by Dr. Morgan, who has been the man that I’d been seeing mostly for the last year. I was glad to see that I had another loss and that I’m now currently sitting at 276 pounds on the dot. It’s amazing to see where I was last year compared to now, or even compared to where I was two years ago.

It feel good to go to work and someone that I hadn’t seen for a while comment that I looked malnourished, I found it to be funny that people think that I’ve lost so much weight that it was hard to recognize me.  Man, I really feel that I’ve come a long ways, and even better I’ve got to a twenty-two year low, with the fact that my pants are smaller than I was when I first moved to California.

I will admit that I think that I started to fall into a bad habit again with sneaking a few snacks here and there, but I’m going to correct that. I think that the fact that I can admit that and am aware is a step farther than I was before this whole thing started.

Before I continue on with the story, The CK Project has started a podcast: https://anchor.fm/CkProject/episodes/Introduction-to-the-weight-loss-process-e2qsnt/a-abgq9b 

https://anchor.fm/CkProject/episodes/Depression-1-e2qso8/a-abgq9b

These are our first two episodes, we’d really like to get them out to everyone, and get an opinion on what we’re doing.

As I look back, it’s been almost a year since I started to train with Sam over at Flawless Victory MMA, and I’ve enjoyed it. It’s not easy, but anything worth doing is never easy, but there have been so many benefits that have come from this whole process, and I’m getting that much closer to my goals. I remember when I had over 100 pounds to go, and being stuck in the sizes that I had been wearing since I was the biggest size I was.

On top of all that, I’ve decided that it was time to purge my closet of those things that are too big for me. I think this is a big step because it’s another step away from the past self that I’ve held on to for so long. I know that mentally I still have a ways to go, but I’m getting there, and I’m mentally more sound than I have been for some time.

I finally got past my creative funk, and all it took was for me to finally release The Reunion(2019), and I’ve gotten so much positive responses for it. If you want to see it, just hit me up and I’ll send you a link. I don’t try to cross the brands too much, but it’s always good when they come together for something that each can benefit from.

The crazy thing is, with working on three brands, I find that each one takes the main focus at different times. The CK Project is where most of the every day focus goes, and I’m making amazing connections through those who would be on the weight loss journey as well. I find that Luckey Bom Films is where most of my true passion is, because it’s the part that really saved my life when I was lost. With the Geekultural Experience,  it showed me something else I had a passion for, all things related to pop culture, and this last one is dedicated to my friends, and the son they lost because of the connections that has been brought into my life.

They come together and add to the layers in my life as it is. I’m happy that I can use my experiences in life to help others, there’s a joy there. I like that I can tell a story and have people connect somewhere emotionally to it. I also love the fellowship that comes out of celebrating what people are passionate about.

What is it that you’re passionate about? What makes your day get going? How do you feel when others tell you that it’s okay to follow your dreams? Sure people might think that it’s bullshit, and that they should play it safe, but like I said before, anything worth doing is never easy. If you can find a way to make a life out of what you love, you’ll never work a day in your life. Not all of us are gifted with the silver spoon, but the journey to get there is fun, and I’m excited to see what it’ll be like to finally make it.

This is a much lighter director, and while doing what I love, this blog is another wrap.

 

 

 

The Ex Conundrum

As a blogger, I get inspired to write about subjects that come to my mind. One of the subjects that I’ve often have brought up is my ex-wife. There was so much that came out of that relationship, that left me in shattered pieces for a long time. I’ve healed from the pain, and forgiven for my own personal growth. As, I’ve been in contact with her a few times through out my adulthood.

As I’m writing this, I’ve come to realize that self-improvement started for me in 2007, when I had run into my ex-wife in K-mart. We talked and I came out of that situation with forgiveness in my hearth, and we’ve learned to become friends over the years. There’s no way that we’ll ever have that connection that we had when we were younger and in love, but I care for the person she is.

Now, I’m married to another woman, who’s been my life partner for eighteen-years. I love her, and life is far better than I ever thought it would be. So, about five years ago, the ex sent me a text, and while we were talking she told me that she had come down with stage-four cancer. She had even sent pics of her in a hospital, without any hair. I was shocked, and a bit saddened by this news.

The thing about my first marriage was that there was a lot of shit that went down, and things went very south, in a rapid manor, and it would seem that this first chapter into adulthood would be closed forever. This was a time of tremendous growth into maturing, even in the most fucked up of ways. At least now the scars are finally healed.

So, now that I’ve made piece with the ex, there was no animosity between us, I had tried to be a person that she could talk to, because her bridges had been burned with plenty of people, and it wasn’t like I had to have a very strong connection to the situation that she was in. The cancer had got me to thinking about how things were, and how things might have been. That was the last conversation that I would have with here for many years.

For a few years, I would ask her family how she was, more so if she had passed, or if she had beaten it. The one thing I know is that I felt that knowing if and when she passed would give me some closure to that chapter in my life. I know that those questions were hard for her sister, at least she knew I cared.

There are so many things that we had done wrong while we were together. We were young, and very inexperienced, especially when it came to our emotions. While things were fucked up at times, and we had more bad than good, it was a defining moment in my life. I had lost friends over that situation, and I hit rock bottom. Yet here I am, stronger then ever, and it helped me to realize what kind of people I wanted in my life. The right people who left ended up back in my life, and I ended up with the right woman in the end.

In hindsight, I don’t regret the decisions that were made, as it helped lead me to where I am today. I think that’s how our experiences develop help us mature. Some take us down, and rock bottom happens at different points in our lives. I think that’s what shows us our true nature. Do we decide to have this destroy ourselves, or do we decide to use those choices to build upon the knowledge and experience to prevail.

I think that I want to take a moment to thank my ex for the experiences that we gained together, shitty or not, it was the moment that caused me to grow a bit. I was disconnected from so much because of what had happened, but it’s built up a pretty strong sense of what I wanted in life, and my principles are stronger than ever. I hope that you do kick the cancer in the ass and you survive. You and I both deserved better than either one of us had been willing to give when we were younger. I find myself caring about you as a person and hope that the future gets better for you. Even if it doesn’t, know that I only wanted the best for you.

One of the best things anyone can do, is learn forgiveness. That’s part of the CK Project, to better one’s self, and forgiveness can sometimes be the hardest part of our growth. Sometimes, it’s easier to just hold on to the grudge and let it eat away at our souls. That’s not how I want to live. I’ve been told that I’m very much like my grand mother, and she was a bitter person who knew how to hold on her grudges. I don’t want to be that person, and I strive daily not to be that kind of person. It’s taken years to get to the point where I feel chill and laid back, but I know that it’s not hard to feel those negative feelings.

Remember to keep looking for self-improvement, and as Michelangelo once said in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles(1990), “Forgiveness is divine, but never pay full price for late pizza.” This is the director, and that’s a wrap.

Putting Tabasco on the Basco

I want to give a huge thank you and shout out to Sam Basco. We’ve known each other for twenty-years, and for most of that time we kept talking about doing some working out together. I would find excuse after excuse on why I wasn’t ready to work out with him, and that was how things went for many years.

Sam’s a good guy, he has a love of comics, martial arts, and health. Among other things Sam has written articles on the subject of physical fitness. As I’ve discovered, Sam is really a jack-of-many-trades when it comes to personal training. Not only is he a coach and a personal trainer, he’s also a dietician, a physical therapist, and teaches me life lessons.

Sam’s been the right element to help push my physical transformation. He keeps me honest, and knows when to push me to go harder. He’s also been helping me find my inner warrior, which is something that I never sought out before. I appreciate it because there have been times in my life that I needed more than I was getting, and I wouldn’t stand up for myself. I would just take, and take, until I exploded.

I was out of control and I had no direction. Now things have become different, I’m different, more motivated. It sometimes seems like it’s been easy, but these improvements have taken years to come, and my willingness to change. Sad part is, death was the eye opener. I felt like I was on my way there, and there was a point that I didn’t care.

It sounds kind of selfish now that I think of it. I mean, I have a loving wife, great kids, so why wouldn’t I care about living? Being a depressant doesn’t work like that, all the thoughts are, of wanting the feeling to end. I remember doing things while being depressed that would defer me from having to deal with those feelings. Sarah didn’t understand. The children just say that dad was closing himself off from everyone else. I just wanted the feelings to go away.

Again, it’s a shame that it takes something major to wake yourself up from whatever is going on. I think that the sign that God sends. You need to deal with your issue and buy putting something in front of you, or in this case myself. I had to decide how I was going to handle it. Did I want to continue down the same self-destructive path that I had been on for a few years? Did I want to find that light at the end of the tunnel?

Finding that light was deciding that I wanted to improve my quality of life. I had enough of quantity, and I needed substance to fulfill myself. When I say quantity, I mean I was living off of the pleasure of satisfying my insecurities with food. All the food, all the time. Depression, feed the comfort food to it. Boredom, keep the entertainment by feeding the mouth and keeping the taste buds distracted. Yet, there was always something missing. I wasn’t ready to be goal oriented. I was just skating by with a job, and home life, there wasn’t anything else, and I knew that I wasn’t satisfied, but I didn’t want to listen to myself until the possible loss of employment changed my life.

I wish that we as a a society didn’t have to wait or deny that our persons need a change from self-destruction. I wish that I was “woke” to the situation that I needed to change something. Unfortunately, that takes a courage that all too many times  we lack. Is this because of our vanity? Or is it that change is something that most people seem to fear?

Too often we are taught in society that different isn’t good. While it seems that some of society standards have changed there are those who can’t seem to grasp change. Racism was the social norm until the civil rights movement changed that. Yet, you still hear that hatred being perpetrated, just on a quieter scale. Classism on which people of varying economic levels, view those of a lower class to be beneath them.

Is this why people are ingrained to ignore changes needed in their behavior? Is it truly that rare case in where someone decides to break the social standards, and rise above their giving station in life? I lived a very self-serving life when I was younger, and while I was always a “nice guy”, I had my own motivations for doing things. In a way I still do, just now I choose to help others, because in my motivations, it brings me happiness to see someone better themselves. I wish there were more people like that.

I would hope that anyone reading this would take a look at themselves, and see what changes they might need in their lives. If for any reason is to reflect on the types of decisions that they might make, or constantly make. This is the director, and that’s a wrap.

Buck Fifty and Some Change

So, I had waited a few weeks before I decided to weigh myself. I was fully dressed and it was the middle of the day when I decided to get on that scale and check my weight. There’s days that I don’t feel that I’m doing well enough on my journey for weight loss, and when that happens, I don’t feel confident enough to check my weight. I had taken a week off from my personal training because I had changed to the night shift at work.

This move has defiantly been a challenge to adjust, especially since I’ve never had to put in late hours like that before. The first week, was about me trying to adjust and not feel tired all day. Yet, that’s how the first week on night shift felt like I was in a zombie state all week. This week was far easier to handle.

Any way, taking that week off from my workouts, I had a week where I felt fat. That is something I still struggle with. I’m not sure that those feelings are going to go away at anytime soon. It’s the reprogramming from the years of abuse that I need to remember isn’t going to be undone in the foreseeable future.

Anyway, as I stepped on the scale, I weighed-in at 279.9. The  awesomeness also came in the fact that my BMI is at forty-point-two. It’s exciting to know that I’m still doing well, and that a week didn’t hurt to take off, at least I was still getting in my 10,000 steps in.

Great news in the weight loss journey, plus the fact that I’m also down another size in pants, I’m feeling really damn good about it. I’ve been working so hard to get down, and I still have a ways to go, but to have a non-scale victory is just as good, as seeing the numbers go down. As long as the motivation to keep moving and doing the best job to keep active goes, that’s the important part.

I want to give a shout out to some people that have come up to me in the last few weeks to thank me, and tell me that I’ve been an inspiration to them. Thank you, and also you’re welcome. This is the reason I started to use the CK Project as a tool. I wanted to be an inspiration for people to want to better themselves. So comments like that, just show that I haven’t been waisting my time by putting my stuff on social media. That’s a skill that I’ve been working on for a while now, and finding new avenues to present things would be. Remember that my main page for it is https://www.facebook.com/ChrisKeelingProject/ and I’m on Instagram, Twitter, Tumblr, Snapchat, and newly MeWe. 

Not only am I about inspiring others, but I feel that we as a people need to help and look out for each other. I had an unfortunate situation at work as I learned that a co-worker had passed on while at home. I can’t say that I was completely surprised as he was starting to get up there in years, and he wasn’t in the best of health. The hard part is that the last time I had seen him, he had been looking a bit rough, and then hearing co-works say that he’d seemed different, and that they had feared that he was getting too sick to actually be effective at work, makes me sad. If you see something wrong with a co-worker, please say something. It might be the thing that might help to keep somebody from perishing before their time. I wish that I would have known that it was that bad, I would have suggested him to get checked out.

He was a great guy to know, and I think work will be a bit less bright with out him there. This has been the third death that has happened within the last few months that has hit a bit too close to home for me, but life goes on, and I hope that this doesn’t keep happening for a while. Too many good people have pasted lately and it’s emotionally taxing when you’ve got those who need the support because of their loss. It’s a painful reminder that we’re all getting older.

On another positive note, my eldest child got done with school this past week, and I’m proud that she’s got a bright future in front of her. I can’t believe that she’ll be eighteen soon, and ready to fly the coupe. This is the director, and that’s a wrap.