Two Years And Change

I put this picture here as a reminder of where I’ve been, and where I’m going.

I would be lying if I said that I’m okay with the before picture. I mean looking at what I was, there comes a certain dose of reality that is hard to swallow. How could I have ever let things get that bad? I mean I knew I was heavy, but the reality is that I never thought it got that bad.

I look at that before picture and I know why it was that way. You could see all the negativity, the fear, the fact that I still didn’t care if I died or not. I carried that with me for a long time. It’s funny to look back on the past and get the sense of how foreign all of that was. How would that person back then, react to the person now?

I know that if I could talk to that past version of myself, I would tell him not to worry, life gets better, and that things are going to happen very unexpectedly. I would tell him that he’s going to feel better physically, and that everyone is going to constantly ask if he feels better. I would tell him that mentally, he’s never experienced something so profound, and things will lead to living the best life ever.

It’s been a journey that has built character. It hasn’t been easy and there have been times that I wanted to give up. In the beginning there were times that I didn’t feel that it was going to be worth it. The hard work and struggle that I would have to endure. The self doubt that would creep into my mind.

The truth is that I still have days that I still feel like I’m 429 pounds. There are days I feel disgusted with my own body, and that I’ve blown all that hard work. I’ve also been told by others that there are times that they feel the same way, even if they’ve lost a huge amount of weight. I wonder if it ever leaves us mentally?

With all that weight, came a feeling of self loathing. I hated myself, and what I represented. I didn’t care, hell I actually still wanted to die. I was slowly killing myself, and I had to find that one thing to turn myself around. I know there are aspects of my job that I would walk away from a day of work and thought that I was going to die during my shift, and walking, feeling the pain in my knees was the worst. I hated feeling like I was falling apart.

That was the turning point I think. I was walking up some steps and my knees started to hurt, and I became clumsy. I would start to trip when I walked. Something, somewhere clicked in myself and I was ready for a change. That was when I decided to make the call.

I think another fact that contributed to the decision was that I was on the last leg of my bachelor’s program at school, and I wanted to see where my professional life was going to go. I find it funny that my professional life has driven me in different directions and that it has contributed to both braking me down, and me finding myself.

When I look back at that time in my life, I had no direction, and now my focus is on things that I never really concerned myself before. I feel accomplished with the fact that I’m always trying to go forward now, and improving myself for a better future. That’s where I am mentally, and I couldn’t be happier. I know that the journey is just as important as the end.

I’m glad I got the help that I needed to get myself in a better mind set, and I recommend that if anyone else starts to feel hopeless find someone to help you get through it. Professional help is the best place to go, and it’s a shame that people look at mental health as a taboo subject. I’ve noticed a movement of people becoming “woke” about this and other subjects as of the last several years, which is a plus. It’s a shame that we’ve come so far, yet we still have that much farther to go for full acceptance. Why does society have to come across like a bunch of animals in so many circumstances?

I know I’ve mentioned before about the amazing support system I have, but to take that one step further, most of the most important people in my life have, or continue to support and nurture me in my growth. These people are more important than they will probably ever realize, and if they’re not sure who they are, I’m going to be telling them soon enough.

While this blog has taken me a few days to write, it’s given me a bit of time to reflect and realize that while the last five years have been about growth, most of it has actually happened with in the last two years. My decision not to be a victim to my own self-loathing was the first part of that bigger step.

I will continue to provide the audience with insight and content from all aspects of my life. I hope that people continue to reach out, either for advice, or because they find inspiration in the things I do. With that, this is the director, and that’s a wrap.

 

When Considering Weight Loss

Being heavy set most of my life, I’ve had a very hard time with self image. I’m fortunate in not having Body Dysmorphic Disorder(adaa.org), however I found insecurity in the way I looked and was ashamed to have any part of my body exposed in public. That pressure got a bit worse as I got older and heavier.

I had let myself get to a point where I was going to eat myself to death, and I didn’t really care. At worst, I hated myself at what I became, and I didn’t feel like I was in the body that I belonged in. Yes, I know that this is things that I’ve gone over before, but I want to give some advice for anyone who wants to loose weight.

There are several ways to loose weight, we’ve seen the commercials for Atkins, Weight Watchers, Hydroxy Cut, and I’m sure questions about which one is the right way to loose the weight, and keep it off? In my experience, there is no one right way. The truth is this: eating right and maintaining an active life style is the only true way to keep healthy.

If you decide to go on pills, or diet drinks, then that would be something that would be apart of the rest of your life. Just like any of the other options, it takes commitment. That’s the key here, commitment.

That’s what the whole weight loss journey is about, commitment. It’s not going to say that you have to be spot on all the time. There are cheat days for a reason. I’m not always spot on. I’ve had moments that I’ve over indulged. The thing to remember is that one cheat day isn’t the end of all the hard work, and the next choice can put you back on track.

Remember, the weight didn’t get put on over night, and it won’t come off over night. So don’t get discouraged. I had the Vertical Sleeve Gastrectomy, it was the tool that I needed to get me to the point where I could help get myself to lose the weight. It’s not cheating, but this is perhaps one of the most serious choice decisions to make. This can’t be reversed, and the only way to go is to have a full by pass.

So, my success story seems to have inspired you to get the Vertical Sleeve Gastrectomy? You want to lose 148.1 pounds like I did? So, here is the things you need to learn, and accept before even going for it. First off, you need to strongly consider your relationship with food, and if you’re willing to change that relationship. Thinking that you can’t change, or aren’t willing to change, has to go out the window. If you want to be successful, then you have to be willing to make those changes. If you think that you’ll lose all this weight, then go back to eating like you used too, stop, right, there. This isn’t for you.

Now, if you can accept all of this, that’s good, but there’s more. The surgery is going to change you, and not just the removal of two-thirds of the stomach, but hormones are going to change. There’s probably going to be bouts of depression that will hit. Just remember, that it’s a mental game. Once you can accept this, you can accomplish anything.

As I’ve been doing this journey for almost two years, and thirteen months since I had the surgery there are things that I’m preparing myself for, and you’ll have too as well. The big on is the fact that as a big person, you’re going to have saggy skin. My trainer and friend Sam says that’s the punishment we get for treating our bodies bad. I’ve heard people getting depressed about the the way they look after having the loss of their fat, but feel that disappointed. Some people get the skin removal, and I am strongly considering it. I’ll donate it to burn victims. That way, I can turn my negative into a positive for other people.

If you can handle all of this, and have the willingness to  change. I wish you the best, and hope you reach out and share your own personal journey with me. This is the director, and that’s a wrap.

2018….New You? New Me?

So today marks the first day of the year 2018. As I was on Facebook this past few days, I saw all these posts about how people couldn’t wait until 2017 was over and the kind of shit storm the year had been. Then I read about how people were going to better themselves with the New Year and the resolution that would come with it. People were going to quit smoking, treat others nicer, exercise more, etc…

This is all well and good, but most New Year resolutions don’t last, so I present a challenge to anyone who wants to make a life change. Why do it on the New Year? Why say that this is a new year and a new chapter? The truth is if you had a shitty year last year, then your mind is already set for another shitty year this year. Measures of time, it just keeps going, people get older, life goes on. Here’s the challenge: Start now! It doesn’t have to take a new year to start changing those habits. If you want a better year, learn how to get your mind in the right way of thinking, so that the negative doesn’t affect you the way it has for so long. You want to be healthy? Start by talking to a dietician to help you eat correctly, don’t leave the holiday’s as an excuse to gorge out on food.

Now, I can hear some of the muttered voices going, what about you Chris? What are you changing in the new year? What business of yours is it that we do a new year’s resolution or not? For that I have a response too: It really isn’t my business, but because I care for those in my life, I want to see success. As for the changes that I’m going to make in the new year, hate to say it, but I’ve been doing these changes for the last three years, and it didn’t take a new year to mark those changes. The fruits have really started to show up in the last few months. For me, it’s about the long game.

I got my degree in the mail last month from school, so looking for a better job is a priority on that list. I had the Vertical Sleeve Gastronomy done on the eleventh of December so my weight loss goals are well on the way. I’ve been networking and getting to know people so that I can get other projects of mine underway. The beautiful part is…..I didn’t have to wait until the ball dropped for me to decide to make life changes.

Sure there was a time that I settled for whatever was going to happen for me and it took my depression to get that swift kick in the ass for me to be motivated to do something to better my situation. I did it, and I haven’t looked back. Sure there are times that I wanted to quit, there were times that I just wanted to give up, and go back to the place that I knew I was going to be safe, but that is no longer the case. I want to have better things for my life, and playing it safe isn’t the way to go.

Sometimes you need to put yourself out there and take those risks to help you grow as a person. Shit happens and life is unfair, so to counter act that, you have to come up with the mindset that some of that shit isn’t so bad. I find myself staying positive, and not always because other people necessarily need it, but for myself. Yes, it helps to be positive for others, and that is a service I do provide, but it helps me keep it together, nine times out of ten.

Some of the negative things that happened within the last month, I decided were just mere bumps in the road. I had a health scare that put me in the emergency room after my surgery, was a bump. The loss of our pet of fifteen years, a mere bump. Life has been good to me over all and I can’t let the negative define how my life goes.

If you find this post negative, or that you feel that I’m on the attack….that was never my intention. I want to see you succeed, I want to see you have a great life. Follow your passions, be happy, that is what I want. This is the director and that’s a wrap.