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    BRACKENCHERRY   449
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Week #12


Thursday, February 14, 2013

This last week was hard. Somewhere between week #10 and my week #12 weigh-in, I had encountered a lot of stress. An ex-wife will do that. The funny thing is I shouldn’t let her get to me the way she does. It is one of the reasons I moved to a different state. Her desire to control everything, including me, was suffocating. The relationship between our daughter and me is tarnished. I am trying to reconnect, and there she is….interfering. I am not allowed to email her or text during school hours for “reasons I won’t go into right now.” Really? So now….I can only email or text her at night. Could I go to court with pages of documentation showing the level of interference she has had since I moved a few years ago? I suppose I could. At this point, I take the stress on and absorb my own frustrations. It had a negative impact on my weight loss, I believe. It was a slight derailment. It doesn’t end my overall journey, simply slowed my momentum.

A great thing about my wife now is that she is extremely understanding and, although the perspective is somewhat biased due to our union, she listens. It helps alleviate the stress and I believe this week will be a better week. However, going through this struggle, I learned a lot about how damaging stress can really be. I think of all the people with undiagnosed disease that are not controlling their issues pharmaceutically and also are over-stressed yet….they question why their health is in the toilet. If they only knew, like pretty much everyone with everything in their lives…if they only knew. This just happens to be about food and nutrition. If I knew at 15 what I know now, I would have applied myself a whole lot more and wrote my own ticket. Yet, I settled for the fun and skating by. If I knew at 15 how I would end up; obese, diabetic and sick, I would kick myself most of my life and limit abuse. If I only knew.

This is such an amazing journey and one that in some morbid way I am glad I am on. Morbid in the sense that it took potentially killing myself to have this epiphany that my life does not have to be this way. When I see other people struggling with weight, I do not look at them in disgust as others may, I look at them wanting to help in any way I can. I want to go up to them and tell them that this is not the way your life should be. I want to them there is hope for something better and it is within their power. I want to tell them that the norm, what got them to where they are now, does not have to be the norm tomorrow. My abuse has become a lesson, not just to myself, but to people around me. I feel like it’s my duty to take what I have learned and pass it on. My 9-year old daughter has shown a lot of interest in nutrition, what is both good and bad for you, but more importantly, she wants to know why. The ‘why,’ I think if everyone knew, would create enough awareness to change a lifestyle. Awareness is paramount. The words “I had no idea” need to be uttered by over 40% of Americans. This epidemic of obesity is out of control and no one, but us as individuals, can change it. Corporations are making millions upon millions of dollars off of us as consumers. If we do not change our mentality toward food, why should the manufacturing companies? If we want to be healthy, we need to stop looking for an easy way to do it or looking for others to change us. We change us, from the inside out, and then help others do the same. It begins with one person at a time, one community at a time, one state at a time, one nation at a time. This process for change starts with you. Don’t begin when it is convenient. Convenience has been a major contributor to the problem of obesity. Begin now, today, and carry it forward so that the best years of your life start immediately. Our past is a lesson, not a punishment. We must learn, adapt and evolve towards better health before it is too late. Our wives and husbands need us. So do our kids. Our kids ESPECIALLY need us to change what is happening to them, at their schools or their events. Be the power for change. Be the awareness that is necessary to return to the fundamentals of food. You may surprise yourself.

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