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Leather Wins over Chocolate in my Emotional Indulgences

My day started too early today because I thought I had to be up to buy P!nk concert tickets, but they didn’t go on sale until tomorrow so that alarm clock that woke me up at 9 am was a bit fruitless. I’m not a morning person; I really have to go out of my way to fix my schedule to adjust for being awake before 10 am. I’ve been working graveyard and night shifts since I was 18 years old and to me, anything before 10 am is considered – the butt crack of dawn.

I decided to hit the gym earlier than normal today, why not do that, get my energy up and then tackle some of the things on my ‘to do’ list Pre Dal-land. I’ve nick named my upcoming trip Dal-land BTW, since I’m flying to Dallas, then Oakland then back to Portland.

So I will admit, I’m a little stressed out right now. OK  I’m a lot stressed out right now. I’m going to share a little, because really, I just need to talk it out for myself and I do that better in writing, so why not share and let others learn from my over compulsive over thinking. Here we go.

It wasn’t just two months ago that my friends and I decided to launch an IndieGoGo Fundraiser to help me try to achieve my next goal of opening my own business as a Personal Trainer focusing on doing in home training sessions with Pre and Post Op Bariatric Surgery patients. That fundraiser suddenly propelled me forward and the next thing I knew we had a sponsor for the Fitness Equipment, and then I got a response from Chris Powell and it light a fire under my butt like you would not believe. I was suddenly even more driven than ever to meet this next goal and achieve this next dream.  The next thing I know I am going to the OAC Convention.

This is where I’m starting to get nervous. This trip to Oakland this month was hardly affordable for me, but I felt it was something I really needed to do for myself, and for people who are like Family to me who have been incredibly patient with me being focused on me for the last several years. When the OAC Convention came up, I justified being able to afford it by saying, well I can change my flights around and save some on the airfare. I’m laughing and shaking my head right now, just so you know.

From there everything just started going at light speed. I feel like the days are rushing by me and I’m not even sure where they are going. It feels like I get up, Exercise, Twitter, work on getting everything ready before I leave, and then just start doing it all over again. Not to mention Puppy Classes and all the normal stuff, work, housework, grocery shopping, doctors’ appointments, getting the carpet cleaned and the car serviced. The list seems endless. I’ll admit there are some days I look at everyone in my house and go, why does it always feel like I’m doing everything?

This weekend was full of shopping, of course, I still fight the urge to buy serious clothes right now… like a lot. I keep telling myself that I won’t let by anything too pricey until I know that I’m in my final size. I’ve stuck to that until now. But hey if I am going to Dallas there were some things I was going to need. Now int he aftermath I am suffering from Post Shopping Stress Syndrome 😀

Simone was visiting this weekend, my 17-year-old step daughter and since this was only the second time we had seen her since the beginning of summer it was the first opportunity we had to do back to school shopping. Plus Heather needed some things for the Dallas trip as well, so a-shopping-we-did-go. Now I will say that the three of us, are amazingly thrifty women. Our stops included Goodwill, Burlington Coat Factory, and then we were off to the Woodburn Outlet Mall where we did some major credit card damage at Bass and Wilson’s Leather. Overall though I must say, still we were amazingly frugal. We had a couple big ticket items like our shoes and for me it was the Jacket. I probably should have bought a knock off Leather Jacket. But I had passed up a leather jacket that I loved back in February when Jason and Heather and I all went to the beach, so when I came across a $600 leather Jacket on clearance for $150 that I was absolutely in love with… well… we’re just going to call that an early Christmas present and nobody in the house has to buy me anything accept Christmas Pajamas and fuzzy warm socks. (But if you guys read this I never say no to Pandora charms!)

I rented the car for the last day we are there so that we can do a little touristy stuff after the Convention since it was cheaper for us to stay an extra day then to fly home on Sunday we’re thinking we’ll find something fun to do in Dallas before we head to Oakland. The flight, the hotel, the car, the clothes, I don’t even want to see my credit card bill. I told Heather today that I just absolutely cannot spend any money when I get home until I pay this bill off. It’s scary to me, putting myself in debt to do this, but I just have this feeling that it is something that I am supposed to be doing, it feels right in so many ways, and I just have to trust that the universe is guiding me in the right direction based on what I am letting it know I want.

Faith, trust and pixie dust, I’ll be backing all three to take with me. I have so much stuff I have to do tonight we’ll be lucky to eat dinner by midnight. I should stop rambling….  But, before go… this is the Jacket. I’m sort of like, wow look at me looking smoking in a black leather Jacket. Oh yeah, I probably should not have bought it, but it’s a much sexier and healthier indulgence than chocolate… this is how I justify it to myself. That and I mean it is almost my Surgiversary…. in fact my 2 year Surgiversary is a week from Friday. That is a reason to celebrate. If I had a big circle of friends I’d throw a big party for that day every year with a Halloween theme instead of having a birthday party. So sure I can justify buying this jacket. It’s a 2nd Surgiversary-Emotional-Non-Chocolate-Healthy-Indulgence. Sure we’ll go with that.

DSS:E002 Emotional Aspects of the Weight Loss Journey

So in case you missed this somehow, Chris Powell is my personal hero. A lot of people hear me say that and they think that it is because Chris Powell somehow motivated me to lose my weight. That’s not really true. I didn’t really know who Chris Powell was when I first started my journey, I had heard of him sure, but I didn’t really follow his career or his philosophy. I first met Chris Powell through watching him on Extreme Makeover: Weight Loss Edition right after my Father had passed away.

I’d love to say that the video that I sent in to audition for Extreme Makeover was amazing, the truth is, it was a train wreck. It was so bad I won’t even post the whole thing. I was going through a horrible place in my life, I was extremely sad, depressed, grieving, and I felt lost at the time. In fact the reason that I was even trying out for the show at that point was because I still had over 50 lbs to lose and I was afraid I wasn’t going to make it. Losing my Father was a huge sink or swim moment for me. I knew I was either going to fall on my face and Ding Dongs and McDonald were going to become my confidant or I was going to realize this was just another test life was throwing at me and get up and try to prove I had what it takes.

When I made that tape and first reached out to Chris Powell I was in a different place than I am now. Losing my Father, it was, devastating is the only word that comes to mind. If you can try, imagine this…

You are thirty-six years old. You left home at sixteen and hardly looked back. You’ve not been inside the house you grew up in years. You have safely distanced yourself from a Family that emotionally and verbally abused you over and over again. Every man you have ever had in your life has hurt you. From your step-grandfather who molested you to your long time childhood friend that date raped you at sixteen to the current man in your life who has a really bad habit of having internet affairs that break your heart. The world has taught you that there is ONLY one person that you can truly expect to love you unconditionally your Father… and now you just lost him.

The aftermath of my Father’s death was paralyzing to me emotionally. I had no clue how to get back in the saddle and ride without him there to motivate me. I was turned off to Exercise for the first time since I had discovered it, not because I didn’t want to exercise, but because I had made a deal with my Father that I would spend time with him when I exercised, that it would be our time to talk to one another, and quite honestly I was too angry at losing him to spend that time with him.

As a little girl my Dad was the only thing I remember being good without being bad. I don’t have horrible memories of him, in fact most of the good memories I have are with my Dad. I remember him teaching me to ride a bike, building props for my school plays, buying my entire softball team all the gear they needed to be allowed to play just so I could. He taught me how to throw a ball, how to shoot hoops, how to drive a car. He taught me how to be a good person, to be genuine and honest, to say yes Sir and yes Ma’am and to treat my elders with the respect that their age and life experience demands. He taught me treat others the way I wished to be treated.

But the one thing that my Father gave me that to this day is the greatest gift of my life was the motivation that I needed to be successful in life. He had big dreams for me, a college education, a career as a lawyer or a doctor, I was going to be the first of his kids that really did him proud and made something of myself, he told me I was smart, beautiful and that I could do anything I set my mind too.

My Mother tells a story about how my Father once told her that she would never have the relationship she wanted with me until I was in my thirties that it was going to take me awhile to be at that point in my life. I wonder how he knew. When my Dad came to me in January of 2010 and said “Everything that you’ve done this far J, you know it won’t amount too much if you keep digging an early grave with a fork and spoon. I love you Daughter, I worry in my old age about you living long and being happy and healthy,” it floored me. It was the only time in my entire life of being the chubby kid and the fat girl who my Father had actually said anything in regard to my weight.
My Father was a Texan born and bred. He was a cowboy and a man who remembered a time in the world when $.25 would leave you with a dime after a movie, soda pop and hamburger in town if you hitchhiked each way. He was a self-made man, he had no education, he lost both is parents before 15 and he built his way up from nothing to supporting his entire Family on his income alone. He taught me that there is nothing you cannot accomplish if you work hard for it, and that when life throws obstacles at you, it’s really just preparing you for what it has in store for you.

Today I watched Chris Powell on ABC Good Morning America. The show featured one woman who lost 205 lbs. Her motivation came from seeing pictures of her friends from high school and asking herself they looked fit and she looked the way she did. Congratulations to you Latrina!!! There are so many things this woman said in her short interview that I can relate too. This woman is so on point it amazes me!!

“Instead of hurting myself I started helping myself.”

“In life, there are so many people who give up on you, so you can’t give up on yourself.”

“I want to teach people to live healthier lifestyles.”

And then they bring out Chris Powell! She got to meet my Hero! I’ll admit it; I am a little bit jealous. Just a little, it’s okay though I am okay admitting to jealousy.

Chris Powell asked Latrina two questions, first he asked her what motivated her, I’ve already answered that, my Father motivates me, he motivated me from the beginning with his words and he continues to motivate me now through the connection I feel with him when I exercise.  Finally Chris asked her, “If you had one thing to say to the millions of people who are too terrified to take that very first step, what would it be?”

My answer would have been that you have to get up and try. No matter how bad it gets, no matter how lost you feel, you just have to get back up and try. As long as you are trying, you can’t fail.

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Author: Pandora Williams

Author of Desperately Seeking Slender

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