Progress? I can definitely see it if I compare November's photo to this one, and I can see it in the bikini version of the progress pics that I don't post online (the internet is forever, after all), but I might feel it more than I can see it. Plus, I can almost do a clapping push-up, so if that's not progress I don't know what is!
The closer I get to my goal, the more I seem to think about what it took to get me here.
This morning, I was standing in my kitchen feeling particularly blessed, blending up a mint chocolate kale smoothie and feeling so grateful for the opportunity to improve my salsa dancing so much this weekend.
Two years ago, I wrote in my journal: why don't I do the things that are good for me, the things I know I need to do? I was carrying almost 40 more pounds of fat than I do today. I was miserable, I was sabotaging myself, I was weighing myself down with relationships that didn't serve me.
Truthfully, I wasn't doing the things that I knew I needed to do. I was depressed and everything was a struggle - it took me 30 minutes to put away a single load of laundry, and getting downstairs to the gym was like moving an entire mountain range, not because I didn't want to work out but because getting my iPod, my shoes, and my keys together just felt so strenuous.
How foreign that life seems to me now.
Now I am living an honest life, expressing what is really in my heart and who I really am. I am happy in my skin. I have been tested by fire and come out stronger.
The next page of my journal says COURAGE. When I ended my engagement a couple of years ago, that is what the priest said to me: courage. I didn't think I had much at the time, but now my business cards might as well say "go big or go home".
I'm struggling here to get to my point. My life has not become perfect, but I have made it nearly perfect for me. The big complaints that I had in my journal two years ago were the same as they are today, but how I handle them has changed dramatically in ways I never could have fathomed. I had to gather that courage and cast out into the deep, and little by little it has all added up.
Honestly, I didn't think I could do it.
Rome wasn't built in a day, but it WAS built. If you don't quit, you WILL eventually get where you are going.
I quit twice in the past two years, once because of a medical issue (which was legitimate - but the crappy excuses afterward were not) and once because the abusive relationship I was in was turning my head inside out and making me doubt everything. I learned from both of those experiences because, ultimately, I got back on the horse and rode the hell out of it.
I guess this is my point for now: we all struggle in this journey, but no matter how far your goals may seem they really ARE possible. I know that some of my acquaintances think I live a charmed life, eternally gifted with boundless energy and an insatiable appetite for sweet potatoes, but they don't know the literal blood, sweat, and tears that I gave to get me here. If you're hungry for success, it can be yours.