Tuesday, December 28, 2010

How Did it Happen?

You’re not sure how you got here. A few pounds after high school. A few more after you got married. You never lost the several you added with your first child. The next two kids? You didn’t have the time or energy to notice.  Now, you’re overweight and you’re tired. Your body aches. You hate to look in the mirror. You hide the pounds under baggy clothes. You don’t care so much about your hair or make-up anymore. You feel so far away from the energy you had as a high school cheerleader. Being that person almost feels like another lifetime or maybe a movie.

You feed the family fast food or carry out several times per week.  When you do eat at home, you open the freezer even though you know frozen lasagna and fish sticks don’t really count as cooking.  You don’t really know how to cook.  You watch those cooking shows on television and they make cooking seem so hard and complicated. You don’t have the time or energy after work to stand in the kitchen for an hour to cook. All you really want to do is get dinner over with so you can forget about the guilt you feel.

Two of your kids are overweight now too. You know they learned how to eat by watching you. They snack constantly on pretzels or chips or cookies. They drink too much soda. You’ve tried to get them to drink water but the water from the tap tastes awful and soda is cheaper than bottled water that they’d complain about anyway. You’re worried about their health. You’re worried about your own. The last time you went to the Doctor, he said you were pre-diabetic and your cholesterol was too high. He warned you about diabetes and what could happen. And you think about your Aunt who had diabetes and suffered for years.

You haven’t done any exercise since you were 20 years old. None. You used to take the stairs instead of the elevator at the mall. Every now and again you’d park at the back of the grocery store parking lot so you could walk more. You gave all of those things up as the pounds continued to add up. Now, you’re too embarrassed and really have no idea how to exercise anyway. The thought of going to a gym, even one of those woman-only gyms, makes you sick to your stomach. And even if you could work up the courage, when could you do it? Between work, running the kids to their activities and taking care of the house you barely have any time for yourself anyway.

You want things to be different. You want to lose weight. You’ve tried many diets over the years. You were miserable and they only worked for a few weeks anyway. You’re not sure what diet is best. The news is always changing. Low-fat or low-carb… Who knows? You want to have more energy. You want to have more hope. When you were young, you had a dream of owning your own flower shop. Now you can’t even picture your dream anymore. You’re tired. You’re afraid for your kids. You want to teach them how to take care of their own health. You don’t know how.

You’re not sure how you got here.

You don't know how to change.

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