Fat as Hell…

and not going to take it anymore!

Is It Weird To Think of People You’ve Never Met as “Friends?”

Blogging is a strange business.

Through it we find ourselves connecting with people who, in real life, we’d likely never bump into. From the comfort of our jammies, our kitchen counters or our favorite chairs, we reach out and touch people who share our interests or who simply find that what *we* have to say provides them, in turn, with something to say as well. And all of this we do without ever *really* connecting at all. I’ll tell you, for someone who wasn’t born in the digital age and who still remembers rotary phones, typewriters and buying her first 33 1/3 record, all of this cyber roaming continues to represent a very particular and powerful magic.

Lately, I’ve been reading the blogs of people who I’ve grown to care about. (In a totally healthy, non-stalker kind of way, of course). :) Bloggers upon bloggers who have spent the last week or so eating right, counting their calories/points to the very last decimal and exercising enough to make Richard Simmons beg for mercy. And yet… weigh in day arrived and so did all of the weight they’d brought with them *last* week. Amount lost? None. Zip. Zero. Needless to say, frustration followed.

Here’s the thing. I haven’t been blogging very long. What I know about these women or, indeed, about any of the people behind the blogs that I follow on a daily basis, is, admittedly, pretty limited. And yet I’m saddened by their disappointment. I’m pissed off by the fact that they’ve worked so hard without seeing the results they deserve. I’m anxious because I don’t want this week’s frustration to cause them to give up on themselves. And I desperately wish I knew a few magic words that could help make it all better.

All of this emotion channeled towards people who don’t even know my first name. (It’s Jennifer, by the way).

Perhaps it’s because here we all are, slicing through the black, and letting the light shine on what is, likely, the most vulnerable part of ourselves. I mean, I don’t know about you, but I would *never* be brave enough to tell the people in my daily life, the people who I actually see every day, the truth about what I weigh. Sure… they know I’m fat. They have eyes, right? But, I’d never be able to say that number out loud to them. I’d never be able to talk about how being fat makes me feel. I’d never, ever consider exposing the still very raw wounds that being overweight has left on me. And I’d never feel comfortable talking about how hard I work every single day just in the hopes that I’ll be able to squeeze off one single pound of myself by the end of the week. And yet, here I am, and here we all are, doing all that, and so much more.

How could I not have a soft spot in my heart for people who show that much courage — even if I never actually get to shake their hands?

Anyway… we all know what it’s like to spend a week or a month or (heaven forbid) more struggling to do the right thing, fighting our natural instincts and pushing ourselves and our bodies to do things that we never dreamed we could do, only to be disappointed by the results. Deep down, of course, we all know that this is just a part of the process. We know that there’s few steadfast rules to this funny old game and that, in the end, the way our bodies work is far more complicated than some simple formula of calories eaten and calories burned. But it’s not much consolation when the scale gives us the middle finger, is it?

Honestly, I don’t really know where I’m going with all of this except to say that I’ve gotten so much from everyone who has stopped by here and offered me their support, kindness, and for lack of a better term, friendship. Losing weight is so hard. But doing it entirely on your own, with no one to bounce ideas off of, with no one to share you successes, failures and yes, frustrating moments of stagnation, is nearly impossible. Luckily, we don’t have to.

So… keep up the good fight, girls (and guys!)
Not one of us is in this alone.

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January 29, 2008 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 9 Comments

Misery Loves Company

One unexpected consequence of starting this blog has been the fact that, as a result, I’ve stumbled upon and have been reading a number of other blogs written by people who are also trying to lose weight.  And I have to say my reactions are mixed. On one hand it’s awfully scary to think about the sheer number of people who are struggling with this same issue. But on the other hand, there’s also something that is a bit comforting in knowing that you’re not the only person in the world who’s tired of living in this way and who is trying to do something about it.

When I started keeping this journal, I never considered that it might become a way to reach out to other people… and maybe it won’t prove to be that at all, but tonight I feel intrigued (dare I say hopeful?) by the possibility. Even though I don’t subscribe to programs like Weight Watchers, I know that one of the reasons why some people experience success with WW (and other similar programs) is because of the comradery factor. There’s no denying that it’s good to have people to cheer you on and to help pick you back up when you stumble. Since I began on this journey, I’ve done everything possible to keep it a private affair. I’ve been afraid of the possibility of falling down (yet again) in public. And maybe this blog will turn into nothing more than what I originally hoped for: a place to journal about my experiences in the hopes that doing so would help keep me motivated… and of so, that’s just fine. However, if it does turn out to spark some conversations with intelligent people who are either struggling to find the solution to the same puzzle I’m grappling with or who have honest and well thought out opinions on the subject… well, all the better.

Five months ago, when I’d decided that I simply couldn’t go on living any longer in the way that I had been, I could only close my eyes and leap forward, hoping for the best, but not knowing for sure what the future would hold. I suppose all of life is like that really. Each day, we go on about the business of our lives, not entirely sure what will happen in the next moment, but hoping and believing, even without thinking about it, that in the end, everything will be okay. At the time, I think what I felt most was a true belief that, regardless of what I did next, things simply couldn’t get any worse.

But tonight I feel something different. Honestly, it’s an unfamiliar feeling. Not that I’m a perpetual doomsdayer, mind you… but I’ve certainly never been described as an optimist either. That said, tonight, I feel hopeful. Is it because, lately, I’ve been experiencing enough small successes to make me feel as though all my efforts are actually paying off? That’s part of it, sure… but I think there’s another component too. Tonight, as I look out into the blogosphere, I see more than just the black void. I still don’t know what the future holds, but I know I’m not alone.  And that helps.

January 5, 2008 Posted by | health, Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , | 9 Comments