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Wednesday, July 18, 2012

One of our challenges this week for RockIt is to write about two of our roadblocks that may prevent us from reaching our health goals. Both of mine have the same core principal.


FEAR OF FAILURE: I am a perfectionist. I have to do things perfectly or not do them at all. This doesn't fare well for my dreams in life, which are 1. To get to my goal weight and no longer be "obese" and 2. Publish a novel.

See, sometimes I just stand on the sidelines because it's better to not try at all and look like a fool, than try and fail. Right? Wrong. This is the very thinking I'm trying to obliterate, but it is what stalls me sometimes. I'm not the fastest runner. I will never be "perfect" at running. For me, it is an imperfect sport, and therefore it doesn't fit into the square cutout of my ideal -- but that is also the beauty of it. I can run and flail my arms about if I want to. (Remember the Friends episode where Phoebe runs?) Yes, I will look silly, but I would still be technically running. I would still be burning calories. With writing if I don't get words down on the page, there will be nothing to edit. So without my willingness to step out on the ledge and jump, there will be no story, no art, no beauty. Without being willing to jump, and possibly fall, I will remain the exact same person as I am today. No growth. No movement.

One of my favorite Woody Allen quotes is "A relationship, I think, is like a shark. You know? It has to constantly move forward or it dies." Well I think the same rings true for us as humans. We need to keep learning, and failing, and learning from those mistakes, to truly grow and become the people we were meant to be.

I am a comic geek, and love the quote Batman's father says to a young Bruce Wayne after he falls. "And why do we fall, Bruce? So we can learn to pick ourselves up.” It's hard but I do think that every setback makes us stronger and the next time a situation presents itself we handle it a little better each time. And then we may have a huge setback, but we always get back up.

FEAR OF SUCCEEDING: The opposite of fearing failure. Seems silly, right? But how many of us are overweight because of the protection that being larger offered us? (...Raises hand.) Being a larger woman I could be passed by and ignored. I have been mistreated in my life, in my past. By men. When I was a svelte size 6 and considered by some to be beautiful. After certain tragedies in my life, I turned to food. It not only comforted me, it padded me from the world and its risks. I lived over ten years of my life in this fat bubble. To be breaking out of it and seeing men staring at this new creature emerging, to have men open doors for me, to be flirted with, all of this is scary. Yes, I am married now to a wonderful man. But it doesn’t make that attention any less scary, not for someone who has been burned so badly that she is scarred.

I recently lost my childhood best friend unexpectedly. She was young, 37. It was her heart. And while we still talked via text, email and occassionally on the phone, we hadn't seen each other in almost 15 years. Why? Because I had gained 100 lbs. in the span of a year at the age of 24. And I was afraid for her to see me like that. I didn't want her to see what I had become....and felt that she would reject me. Would she have? No. But that was how I lived those 10 + years of my life, living in fear, staying indoors, not having the children we wanted...I lived in a prison that I created myself. This bubble is no longer serving me, and must be burst.

I am no longer going to let fear define, restrict or drive me.

Another quote from Batman, when Henri Ducard says to Bruce Wayne before training him “What you really fear, is inside yourself. You fear your own power .. your own anger... the drive to do great - (or terrible) - things.”

What if what I am really afraid of, in both of my roadblocks, is my own power? That I have the power inside of me to change? Perhaps it’s my own instinct to keep things at the status quo, to avoid change. Change is scary, right?

The thing is, we all have this power inside of us and I think that for me, once I reach my lowest weight (which coincidentally just happened before I hit my 11 month record-setting plateau), I get scared. I see a part of me I haven’t seen in such a long time. And terrible things happened to that smaller person. This weight has protected me, like a blanket. And sometimes shedding that blanket is much more mental than it is physical.

I am going to be strong and let my body take shape and know that now is not my past, I am not defined by my past, and I can step out into the light, and embrace the freedom that comes with it.

Our greatest fear is not that we are inadequate,
but that we are powerful beyond measure.

It is our light, not our darkness, that frightens us.
We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant,
gorgeous, handsome, talented and fabulous?

Actually, who are you not to be?
You are a child of God.

Your playing small does not serve the world.
There is nothing enlightened about shrinking
so that other people won't feel insecure around you.

We were born to make manifest the glory of God within us.
It is not just in some; it is in everyone.

And, as we let our own light shine, we consciously give
other people permission to do the same.
As we are liberated from our fear,
our presence automatically liberates others.

~ Marianne Williamson
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    What a beautifully written, honest blog. Thank you for being brave enough to share your insights with others. It is very inspiring! I can relate very much to what you have experienced in allowing fear in any shape to hold us back and, my 5 year old son has recently decided he is Batman so that brought a smile for that reason, too. emoticon
    2087 days ago
  • AMBER281
    You are doing amazing!!!
    Great blog.
    2098 days ago
    Loved this and all the inspiration in it! I know what you mean about fear of failure and at the same time fear of success. I have to deal with those a lot also.
    Have a great day today!
    2102 days ago
    Well, you are not failing now. You have accomplished so much and you continue to accomplish. Great job.
    2102 days ago
    I am a recovering perfectionist. I am more forgiving of my foibles.

    Develop a healthy anger, if men give you any problems as you reach a wealthy weight. Though I found as I got older, I became invisible to most men! An almost pleasant discovery! emoticon

    You CAN become a smaller and healthier person as long as you don't expect to be a size 6 again!

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    2103 days ago
    I could have written this (some of it). This parallels some parts of my life, too. Except I waited 25 years to reconnect with a childhood friend. Amazingly, I am driving 3 hours one way tomorrow to see her. She drove 7 hours to see me and her relatives, too.
    I would imagine that many people can relate to this blog.
    I know you have the strength to overcome this and I really appreciate your candor in this blog. It absolutely hit home. I believe in you. emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
    2103 days ago
  • KATD13
    2103 days ago
  • ODDIPA78
    So true, and so beautifully written!

    2103 days ago
  • TEMPEST272002
    Thank you for sharing your insights into your roadblocks. I relate completely. Fear is certainly one of my greatest roadblocks. Each time I push through that fear, I'm rewarded with more courage the next time. I imagine that it's the same for you. Step by step, we are getting stronger and wiser.
    2103 days ago
    Actually, I think you are pretty fearless. It is difficult to be so introspective and honest, then to lay it out for public scrutiny. Kudos to you! This may be the push you need to get past your roadblocks.

    I also think that there a probably many others here who have similar fears, who haven't been able to face them this honestly. This blog will help them.

    Thank you for sharing your experience, insight, and wisdom.
    2103 days ago
    2103 days ago
    I can really relate to that fear of failure. I have a tendency to sabotage myself any time I feel like I *might* fail, because then at least I didn't FAIL, I QUIT. It's stupid, and it's something I'm trying to get past, but it's hard.

    And I have missed so many things because of my weight. My favorite singer did one concert with his new band four years ago. Just one. And I skipped it because I was fat. It's one of my life's goal to hear him sing live, but it's a tiny band and I know the singer in person, met him in 2007 when I was a lot thinner, and I didn't want him to see me after I'd gained an extra 40 lbs. Now, I'm kicking myself. I also avoided seeing friends of mine in town for years because of the weight, and events I wanted to go to. Shame ruled my life. Sucks.
    2103 days ago
    Great blog Sweetie!! You will read all ur goals!! XOXO
    2103 days ago
  • UNICORN212
    2103 days ago
    Great blog!
    2103 days ago
    Amen. Thank you for this blog.

    God bless,

    2103 days ago
    2103 days ago
    Thank you for sharing this great blog emoticon
    2103 days ago
    Everything you write comes from a place of honesty and truth and courage. What do you want to write? Fiction, nonfiction? Maybe one of your next goals is to take a creative writing class to help you express yourself. I would definitely read anything you publish! (I already read everything you don't...) emoticon
    2103 days ago
    Thank you for being so open and honest! I too struggle with many of the same fears. You are strong and beautiful and can overcome the obstacles.
    2103 days ago
    First, I am so sorry to hear about your friend...

    Second, the first thing that entered my head when I started reading this was, you have not failed at all. Your triumphs are abundent, losing 100 pounds, beautiful childern, wonderful marriage, your educational accomplishments, your professional accomplishments, your unlimited faith, just to name a few!!! It is human to focus on what we have not done instead of all the things we have!! Crossing the finish line, which I know you have done numerous times can be tough, but I know you can do it!!!

    Third, I to have that same kind of perfectionist streak in me, and it held me back in the world of exercise for a long time. I know you really love to run, and I think that is wonderful. For me, I hated it, but to be perfect I thought I had to do it. I realized it was holding me back from exercising altogether so I decided to worry less about what everyone else was doing, like at the gym when people run on the treadmill, and worry about what I was doing.

    Lastly, You are a success in my book!!!

    2103 days ago
    I can also identify with the fears. I always wonder what amazing things God has for me in this life that I am keeping the doors closed with my fears. You are an amazing writer. I cannot WAIT to read your novel. Please let us know when it is published! It will be awesome!

    2103 days ago
    I can relate to so much of what you wrote in your blog. I hate living in fear. Now I'm wondering if I'm fearing my power. Hmmm... gives me something to ponder.

    It will be fun to watch you bloom. I hope you will keep us posted. I'm cheering for you!

    2103 days ago
    Here's why you don't have to be afraid of success. Even though bad things happened to you before when you were thin, it wasn't BECAUSE you were thin. It's because you were the person you were at that point, that then became the person you were when you put on weight. All of that was inside you, and therefore, you were susceptible to having those bad things happen. But the NEW you, the you that has grown wiser and experienced all of these things, the you who has risen above and conquered SO many things and achieved SO many successes is the you that you are now. Just as there is no going back to 300 pounds, there is no going back to that person who was a victim before. So feel free to succeed and bask in the success that your wisdom has bought you.

    And running is amazing because when you run there are no mirrors (aside from store windows which I try to avoid). I have no idea what I look like when I run, but I FEEL beautiful. And it's one of the times when I really, truly do feel completely beautiful. Phoebe or not, I am that person that can do that thing. And so are you!
    2103 days ago
    You are one amazing lady. Thanks so much for sharing your story, I and many others I'm sure, totally relate.
    2103 days ago
    Oh honey, I know all about this. I was in an abusive relationship and anorexic as a teen, gained the weight as a protective layer, and have had to fight to get my mind and body back as an adult. Do we share a brain? :) One of the biggest revelations I've had on this journey is that not all attention from men is threatening. I can even finally see a lot of it as flattering. I hope some day you can come to that place, too, because it really helps you release the fear. Next time male attention startles you, remind yourself that you're not that scrawny, scared kid anymore. You are a powerful woman and a match for any man. Besides, I can almost guarantee you that he admires you and means you absolutely no harm. Accepting that we are physically beautiful is also hard for women like us, but you need to come to grips with that, too, babe. You're adorable and people are going to notice you. It doesn't mean anything at all about their intent, just that you're pleasant to look at. You are stronger than your fears, Kathy, and won't let them be roadblocks to your goal weight!

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    2103 days ago
    This is a great post. Admitting your fears makes you stronger. Thanks for sharing.
    2103 days ago
    You are such an amazing writer...an inspiration!!!!! I love how you took two opposing fears and fit them together...you are not your past....you are AMAZING! And we are no longer tight in a bud...we are blossoming! You are such an amazing woman and you have come such a long way in the last few years. I love you!
    2103 days ago
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