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SPRINKLECHEZ
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My High Definition ADHD Blog - "My Favorite Years"

Saturday, January 05, 2013

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Not sure if this is going to work but I made a small collage of a day spent last spring with my roommate on the North Shore (see link above). Every now and then I like to go back to where I grew up, see my old house and just breathe in a memory or three. Lived in that house from the age of three until I moved out shortly after college.

Without question the events of this past year have made such a huge impact on me - I should have been dead in May when my Blood Pressure was 277 / 177 I was a walking stroke waiting to happen. But I am not dead - in fact more alive than ever. My body had grown to a massive 345+ lb (estimated) - by New Years 2012. Now one year later, 219 lb by my scale this morning - haven't been this weight since I lived in my old house. Nice Segue - right?
Now that I am spending more time alone, I am really allowing my mind to remember all the good times, weed out the bad memories, and make room for my best days yet to come. I coined the term "Brain-Farming" in an earlier blog - I think it is a great name for healthy recall.

So I have lived and lost more in my first 47 years than most, three houses lost, three great careers, amazing cars, the best of everything. I built a nearly million dollar gourmet store in the middle of central Illinois - Pontiac, IL - former home of my 4,000 sq foot anchor store on the old town square named -"PICKLES, PEPPERS, POTS & PANS" Cute name right? Within five years I had served 13,000 customers and was shipping cookware and gourmet food nationwide and occasionally overseas. Then the Black Monday of 1999 when the Internet exploded, my web orders went from 10-15 a day to 150-200, my store took a delivery of three truckloads of Calphalon Cookware 10 days before Christmas - every bit of it shipped out. But with that sudden upturn in volume, I failed to satisfy 80 (of over 3000) online customers orders and was immediately pulled from Yahoo's Shopping Site. Ask anyone that worked for me, the place was magic. My success in sales was simply because I was only interested in selling customers cookware that they would use every week. Don't want all 8 pieces, I'll sell you the two you're going to use and maybe a third later.

Customer Service got made the name famous - no questions asked, if a customer wasn't happy or using a pot or pan or knife they bought, or they just didn't like it, no hassle returns for the life of the product. I let every customer taste anything in the store before they bought it - guaranteed satisfaction when they got it home and used the gourmet spice or food for a meal.

Get this, I was asked by the state of Illinois in the summer of 1999 to make a presentation on how to build an online store to help small business owners compete against the mega-stores. Somewhere in my storage area I have a book where I was published for being a pioneer of online marketing for a small business. In 2000, the Pontiac Area Chamber named me small business person of the year, and I rode on the back of a convertible in the Thresherman's Parade Labor Day Weekend.

My success gave me the courage to come out of the closet in 1999 - for the first time I felt "free" to be me, although I wasn't sure who "me" was - but I was proud of what I had accomplished. During this time I was blessed with the opportunity to raise someone elses' child through grades 7-12 - God let me be a parent - even if only for five years. His favorite meal was pan fried pork chops, real mashed potatoes, and corn (which I threw a stick of butter and handful of sugar to make it sweeter). He chose not to move back to Chicago with me in 2000 after I lost the store. It was hard to let him go his own way - but I knew that I did the best that I could, his calls to me on Father's Day bring me to tears. I miss him so much.

Tonight's blog is about as honest and real as I get. I am hyper-manic so I am just letting my fingers type as fast as I can remember those days. They were up until now, my favorite years. Until I began my new journey into a healthy body and lifestyle, I never thought I could feel that good about myself again. You my SparkFriends, through your comments, blogs, and unselfish sharing have given be that feeling again a thousand fold from back then. A feeling that this is where I belong, right now, in this moment, letting you deeper into my life, and for the first time in ages, giving myself credit for the things I have done.

The teachable moment for me in all of this, is that nothing happens by coincidence - and that putting it all into perspective, I can understand that what I have lived through made today possible. Had IndyGirl not sparked Effieannie who in turn sparked me on May 25th, my life would be much different. Being able to share honestly, exchange ideas and support each other has taught me more about life than the first 47 years I flew through at light speed.

Thank you for letting me introduce a part of myself to you - this has really helped my overall mental balance. I have no regrets looking back - and now know with certainty that God's will is what I shall do as it is revealed to me. I have a home here on SparkPeople - a voice - a feeling that if just one person benefits from my sharing my journey - then the world is alright by me.

"With honesty, sincerity and deepest care, my life with you I share" (Prince)

Your friend - "Sprink"



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Member Comments About This Blog Post
  • v TONYTHETSANGEL
    I liked this blog. It is indeed nice to have other people to open up to that understand and have a listening ear. emoticon
    1250 days ago
  • v SHESMITH1
    Somehow, I missed this blog when you posted it. WOW! You've ridden a roller coaster and survived that excitement to be more excited now. What a testimony!
    Keep on keepin' on. I know God isn't finished with you yet!
    emoticon emoticon
    1253 days ago
  • v BOVEY63
    Loved how you opened up about your life. That takes a lot of courage, something it is obvious you have gained!
    emoticon
    1293 days ago
  • v CHERYLL1949
    Thanks for sharing! I really like your blog! emoticon
    1293 days ago
  • v ASHPATCH11
    cute smilebox link! ur such an open person its rather refreshing! I love reading ur blogs! keep up the great work
    1295 days ago
  • v SH9719
    Thanks for sharing. I sounds like you ditched more than just weight. Now that I have shed most of my physical weight, I to need to shed some of my other baggage that is weighing me down.
    1295 days ago
  • v PATTYR81
    Your openness and willingness to share your life with us has really inspired me. I've decided that in order for me to really heal, I also need to be open and honest.

    All my life I've lived with a 'facade' so that people would like me and always acted in ways to please others - often at my own expense and keeping personal suffering inside.

    THANKS for sharing and leading by example!

    Your Sparkfriend
    Patty

    emoticon
    1295 days ago
  • v GREENGENES
    Wonderful blog as always. Thanks for sharing your smilebox. Junior has done a number of music events in the area and almost went to Northwestern.
    1295 days ago
  • v KASEYCOFF
    I don't know how I stumbled across your blog, since way led on to way, but - oh, what serendipity! Thank you so much for writing this out! Regardless how far you may have to go, you have come such a long way. All best wishes for you in 2013, Sprink!
    emoticon
    1296 days ago
  • v EFFIEANNIE
    Good to see you back on the site~I was wondering what you've been doing. Sorry to hear about your business loss. I'm sure it was a great store. Well, you are doing great, I am so proud of you. Losing this weight has made you grow in so many other ways. I am so proud of you! emoticon
    1296 days ago
  • v FERRETLOVER1
    Sprink - I live in Skokie, IL (and work in Evanston!) and love to drive past B'Hai Temple - it's such a beautiful building. I have toured inside as well - lovely inside also.

    You have truly lived an interesting life so far...I am so glad you found SparkPeople.

    Congratulations on overcoming the odds and getting yourself healthy! I am so proud to "know" you through your blogs.
    1296 days ago
  • v AVANELL
    Wealth and riches are only temporary, but a relationship with Jesus lasts forever! May you find your fulfillment in Him and Him alone as that is the only thing that will satisfy the heart of man. He will enable you to achieve your healthy lifestyle and He will provide for your every need!

    emoticon on your weight loss accomplishments! emoticon towards the goal!
    1296 days ago
  • v SIMPLY4DHEART
    HI Sprink, that was a pleasure to read your blog. What an amazing man you are. Thank you for sharing you with us. Wow, what a remarkable weight loss and such a remarkable journey from where you were until now and had a critical health conditions and now Look at you emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon Congratulations to you! May you continue to have many successes in the year 2013 and a healthy year as well! emoticon emoticon Diana
    Almost forgot, I really like the Smile Box and the link where you grew up, very awesome! :) :)

    1296 days ago

    Comment edited on: 1/6/2013 12:24:41 AM
  • v ANGIEN9
    I like the smilebox!! And thanks for taking me down memory road with you!! Here is to a great 2013!!
    Your friend,
    Angie
    1296 days ago
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