A long time ago, I used to be able to eat chips by the bag, pizza, tacos, sandwiches, sourdough bread by the loaf, candy by the basket, and cakes, cookies and soda until I was sick.
I used to mock those with weight problems, and giggle at the idea of gaining weight.
I never once looked up my family tree, and for whatever reason, never considered the ramifications of what I saw in those I lived with. Maybe it was simple ignorance. Maybe it was meant to be. Whatever the case, time and chance overtake them all, and despite the ridiculous notions of my long-lost youth, I am no exception.
One day I woke up, got out of bed, and as I passed the mirror on the bureau, I froze. I jerked my head around because I would have sworn someone was standing behind me.
Nope. Just me, in all my semi-nude glory, staring back from the mirror.
It took me a few moments to realize what happened. I’d gained enough weight that, from the glance out of the corner of my eye, I thought I saw a second person in the mirror.
Well. That was, if you’ll pardon the expression, eye-opening.
I set about trying to learn to control my weight. After a time, I settled on carbohydrate restriction. Armed with a dangerous amount of knowledge and with an immediate gratification mindset, I dove headlong into that way of controlling weight.
It worked to the tune of 35 pounds. At the time, I got almost back to my prime weight. (I wanted to reach 143, but couldn’t do that. A whole other post exists there, though.) And I thought, stupidly, I’d never regain that weight again. Oh, and even if I did, I know how to lose weight now. so it will be a snap to get it back off.
Are you laughing? Go ‘head, I don’t mind. I can’t manage a laugh any more, but it’s sort of comical.
Not only have I regained the weight I lost, I also added a whole lot more along the way. After I quit smoking in 2009, things only got worse. I remember wearing a suit for an interview in July 2010. it got snug for a different job interview in August. By October, I was barely in it. By November, I couldn’t wear it. I came to the second interview for the job I now have, and had to carry my jacket in because I couldn’t get it on my body.
Oh, I also had to buy some cheap pants so the button on the suit slacks wouldn’t pop off and kill or injure anyone as a high-speed projectile, ricocheting off the walls, furniture and ceiling with a cartoon whining whistle.
Once my finances were stable, and once I had insurance, I went to see an orthopedic surgeon about my ongoing back issues. What I learned there startled me.
I’d bloomed to a whopping 130 pounds over my average, comfortable body weight.
My loving spouse and I set out on a weight loss journey to solve my problem (the doc said the back and the weight were related; losing weight = less back pain). So, I assumed going low carb again would solve the issue the same way it did in the past.
I’ve tried to return to LC dieting in the past, but it didn’t work. I assumed the failure was due to discipline lax, not to problems with the diet itself. So when I returned to the well one more time, I assumed it wouldn’t be dry.
What I found was at best discouraging and at worst, depressing.
Not only did it not work, I’d never done it right. The first round of dieting triggered chemical depression like no one’s business (which I sort of knew and ended up in divorce court due to…um…emotional issues, let’s say), but this time I was determined NOT to repeat my mistakes. (And, y’know…stay married to beloved.) Off the research bin we went. Thanks, Internet.
We discovered exercise is NOT the answer, despite what so many are told to believe (and thereby do believe). At least, not at first. So we looked harder, and deeper into the topic of weight loss. Especially my wife.
We discovered a new spin on our diet, and implemented those changes. For a brief, shining moment, they seemed to work. Then the same thing happened – nothing. Stagnation.
So, we’re still figuring out what’s going on in the chemistry labs of our bodies. In the meanwhile, I have to say, I’ve had plenty of time to reflect on the things I said, the things I did, and the attitude I did it with back in the folly of my youth. Time and chance overtake them all, and it has certainly overtaken me. I’m a ruin of what I was, and the road back is daunting just to look down, never mind travel.
I don’t know where I’ll end up, or if I’ll find the solution to my issues, but I can tell you this – I’ll think long and hard before I say anything demeaning about someone’s physicality ever again. And if I could take back those harsh words I spoke when I was young, thin, and invincible, don’t for a moment believe I’d hesitate.
Lord, make my words today tender and sweet, for tomorrow, I may have to eat them.
The ones I used before had a LOT of calories.
Image came from here.