So Much More Then A Diet

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Saturday, June 15, 2013

It's been a while since I wrote a Blog Entry but I felt the time was right to express some thoughts about my life as a Spark People member. Over the years I've been on Spark, I have made a lot of friends. I have seen people come and go and I, myself, have dropped off the radar for periods of time - depending on what was going on in my life. The thing that amazes me is that I always find my way back and, when I do, I make some new friends as well as reconnecting with some old friends. It has been a comfort to me to know there are all these wonderful people out there who share my happiness; my worry; my sadness; my pain and always know just what to say to support me and let me know I'm not alone. Recently I've been having some problems with my little dog's health and have been worried that I may, one day soon, be faced with making a decision regarding her life. She is very old - 15 years in real time and well over 100 according to my Vet. I wrote about my sadness and got so much support and so much comfort from my Spark Friends: these wonderful people who I have never met in person - and probably never will. Yet, they were there for me - even when people I see every day didn't really understand what I was feeling. As it turned out, my dog is doing much better and I am just going to enjoy her for as long as I have her.

My hope is that I have been there for my Spark Friends when they've needed that person to share with and find some support and comfort from. When I joined Spark People years ago, I thought I would get support on my diet and health goals and interact with people like myself who are dealing with weight issues. What I got was much, much more. Spark People are about health and nutrition, but they are also about "people" and all the things that shape us and make us who and what we are, and who and what we strive to be. I'm a Believer and I truly believe that the Lord led me to Spark People for more than just diet support. I am very thankful for this place where I can just be me and know that I will be accepted and never mocked or ridiculed. The weight loss I've had is like the cherry on top of the friendship sundae I've enjoyed here!
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
  • JONEC14333
    I have to tell you I was thinking basically the same thing yesterday in the car. I shared my feelings about possibly losing my "dream job", and even though I didn't get any response, it felt good to blog about it. I couldn't do that on Facebook, it is not the place for that sort of thing. I felt that it was OK to dump on my SparkPeople blog, because, well, we ARE here to support one another. I didn't go for food for support, I came here. That kind of support is so important. Bless you for echoing my own feelings.
    2793 days ago

    Comment edited on: 8/26/2013 2:05:25 PM
  • LORNE67
    I understand the feeling very well and welcome back!! My Ginger spent a rough winter not doing well. On May1st, she passed away. Only then did we discover that, she had a growth in her stomach and was what the cause of her difficulty breathing. We knew something was wrong but she would growl at us every time we tried to check it. emoticon
    2823 days ago
  • no profile photo CD12482166
    Great post Genesis. Happy to hear your girl is doing better. emoticon
    2825 days ago
  • no profile photo CD7046534
    Thanks for sharing. Pets do find a very special place in our hearts and it is hard to see them not doing well. Hang in there, and I'm glad you find such good support here.
    emoticon Julie
    2829 days ago
  • no profile photo MARYANNCHARON
    Our pets are like our children, we care for them and love them as family. My prayers are with you as you go through this struggle. Last winter my cat Allie, age 18 1/2 yrs was so ill and so weak, the vet needed to put her out of her misery. It broke my heart to watch her suffer, but I couldn't let her die in such agony. Then a few months ago, we lost another favorite ":child" Daisy, age 16, who had hyper thyroid for years got tumors in her mouth and was too ill to eat. Making these decisions was very difficult, but we needed to put our pets' comfort and quality of life first.
    These are very hard times, but, we somehow get through them.
    Your weight loss and your decision to stick to your plan are truly an inspiration to me. Whatever happens, please realize you have a support system of friends.
    2832 days ago
    So sorry your little dog is sick. Thank you for sharing with all of us.
    2835 days ago
    You are so right... I have left and come back, and really do love my Spark Friends. We may never have met - and may never meet - but some of us are soul mates!

    I lost my sweet little dog in January, and I can tell you it was one of the hardest losses of my life. She was my heart. My DH is not ready for another yet, but one day....

    Hope you are having a great Spark day!
    2835 days ago
    I haven't been here quite a year yet, but I so agree with you about the people here. I have certainly met some 'Sparkly' people!
    2836 days ago
    thank you for sharing your thoughts
    likewise have made SP friends that are wonderful
    One day at a time
    2836 days ago
    Just now read your post and you expressed my sentiments exactly. Maybe its the realization that alot of our issues with our weight/health stem from the way we react to life. Since we share so much in common, we understand one another better than many people who surround us on a day to day basis.
    2836 days ago
    Just saw your post... Enjoy your friend while you have her -- I recently lost my beloved dog. Someone said that the only fault of a dog is that they do not live as long as we do. I so agree. I'm just starting to get involved in the community -- nice to hear that someone who has been a member for a while speaks so highly of the support. Take care, and share how things are going!
    2836 days ago
  • DFG5876

    I can relate on so many levels. I lost my Lab a couple of years ago, I too have a thyroid problem but we must keep going and one day we will reach our goals of many kinds. Keep up the great work.


    2836 days ago
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    2836 days ago
    I'm glad to hear that your dog is doing better. And what you say about support in all aspects of your life is something I'm just beginning to realize. I joined in October and began getting serious about really joining in in February. There is a nurturing spirit in the SparkPeople community.
    2836 days ago
    So many of us can relate to what you're going through.
    Thanks for sharing.
    2836 days ago
    emoticon I can relate with the thyroid problem......beautiful words. emoticon
    2837 days ago
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  • no profile photo 123IM4U2C
    HI Genesis, 1st let me congratulate you on your dog getting better ¢¾
    I am fairly new here, and I'm just finding my way around, and trying to get
    to know other members! My name is Lynda, and I have never had issues with my weight, and have always been fitness conscious, I modeled for fitness brochures when I was younger, That was then, and this is now! Four years ago I was involved in a robbery at Gunpoint! I won't go into the grisly details, but I will say I was alone, it happened at work, and I am a survivor! emoticon

    It changed the life that I knew, and boy did it change me as a person! I always had a problem with body image that stemmed from my childhood, I just didn't and still don't see myself as others do! About three weeks after this robbery, I developed uncontrollable shaking, and I couldn't even go out the door it was that bad! I tried to ignore it and just thought it was my nerves! I started to lose weight, and went down to 103lbs down from 115! I got scared! emoticon

    I had been seeing a Psychologist, and he suggested I see a Psychiatrist! The Psychiatrist said I needed blood work done before he would prescribe medication. I got the lab work done, and it was all good except for one thing...I had developed Thyroid, Hyperthyroid called ( Graves )disease! He referred me to and Endo for confirmation, and yes he concurred! emoticon

    I was put on several kinds of meds, and three of them were responsible for weight gain. The three were beta blockers, anti depressants, and the med for my thyroid! I gained 15lbs in three months, but the Docs weren't concerned because they said some patients gain 40 lbs in a month! I went to work on losing it, and lost it all and went back to a 115lbs. I quit smoking after my boyfriend had a stroke, and now I have gained it back! It's not from eating, because the 1st thing I eat is after 12pm! Then my dinner! I have to work twice as hard to lose a pound because of my slow metabolism from my thyroid! I am allowed no diet supplements at all! It is so hard! I just turned 60yrs old in march of this year! I still workout, lift weights, walk, and do cardio, but nothing is changing! I am hoping that you may have some suggestions for speeding me up again, or maybe the other members will! perhaps someone is in the same position that I am! emoticon I would appreciate any, and all advice! I know it may not seem like much to some on spark, but for me it is! Thanks emoticon
    2837 days ago

    Comment edited on: 7/13/2013 2:01:06 PM
    Thanks for sharing what so many members feel about the community here at SP. it is much more supportive than one would imagine when first joining. emoticon
    2837 days ago
  • CHERIJ16
    You were able to say so eloquently what many of us feel. Spark People is more than I ever imagined it would be.
    I feel your pain and hope your dog will be with you for many more years. My1st. dog, Cindy lived to be 20 years old and she survived being hit by a car at the age of 15!
    In our house pets are part of the family and they have an important place in our hearts. It's nice to find others who share that belief. emoticon
    2838 days ago
    I received you blog in my email and really enjoyed it. You are hitting the nail on the head. Spark people are so much more. I think it is the people aspect that make it what it is. I love all the friends I have make over the almost year I have been in spark and my hope is one day meeting some of them when I get out of state on a vacation. Lots of folks I know are from Canada and someday I hope to visit there and see some spark friends face to face! You Rock GENESIS2012 and my blessings on your pup, I had my dog pass from old age and I know how hard it is to lose their valued friendship. As you said enjoy while you can. Hugs Susan
    2838 days ago
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  • no profile photo CD7753265
    So, so true! If you can't find support and friendship here, it's more than likely you don't want it. Keep up the great work.

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    2838 days ago
    This is so very true. The people on here and th bonds that we form are amazing as we go through our own weightloss/health journeys.

    Thank you for sharing, I'm sure this will reach people and help them realize what kind of community is at their finger tips.
    2838 days ago
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    2838 days ago
    We're part of one large community. If I can do any good in the world that is what I try to do. Once a Girl Scout always a Girl Scout. If you are also a part of Spark People it is easy to do a good deed daily. It takes a little time, but it means so much to not only the person who needs the support, but also to the one doing the giving. We are spreading kindness and sharing that with one another.
    2838 days ago
  • no profile photo CJSMILN
    My very first dog ever was a darling Golden Triever which my husband gave me and I could hold in two hands. He grew, of course, and was the absolute best friend ever. We had him until he was about 15 years old. I still miss him to this day. But I remember the fun times, the silly things he did. So very glad your dog is doing better. I pray she will be with you for some time to come. cj
    2838 days ago
  • no profile photo CMCARTHURWEST
    I have a 12 year old female lab. that has been given three to six months to live, but I'm still optimistic that her doctor is wrong. She is very verbal and tries to talk to us with a variety of barks. She's also very moody and so female, but our whole family loves her crazy ways. I wish you and your pup the best!
    2838 days ago
  • no profile photo CD12085353
    I have never answered anyone before but your blog touched my heart. I am just learning my way around this site and am a little computer challenged. I love reading all the articles and blogs, I too have a pet 14 yrs old and is slowing way down. I have to remind myself not to worry about the future and just enjoy each moment we have with each other, whether, family, pets or friends. Once a minute is spent you can't get it back. Love and God Bless to you emoticon
    2838 days ago
  • LYNCHD05
    How can you explain to people what an awesome site this is. You have said what most of us feel thanksformdoing that.
    2838 days ago
    So wonderful to read that you have some extra time with your beloved dog. What a gift! I know that you are treasuring it. It really hurts to have to say "good-bye" to our loved and cherished pets, who are actually family.

    Thank you for your wonderful blog about the support that you have received from the SparkPeople community and that takes place every day.
    2838 days ago
    What a touching and moving blog. I can so relate. Since my husband's passing I have learned what lonliness is. And those that you thought were your friends and support group moved on and you may occasionally be a fleeting thought to them but I found more support and help online then from people in my life. It is so sad when cyberspace is were you find your help and comfort and who you thought were your friends left you far behind. emoticon
    2838 days ago
    Great Blog I could not say it any better about spark and spark people then you did
    Enjoy your dog.. they are a gift that is for sure..
    keep up the great work,
    2838 days ago
    Thank you so much for putting into words what many of us feel but can not find the words to express.
    Bless you for having the strength to end Trixie's suffering. I'm sorry for your pain.
    2838 days ago
    That is awesome. I know what it is like to lose a pet family member and I am so glad you are going to enjoy her as long as you can. You are so right about Spark People. I am slowly seeing that it is more than support for diet and health.
    2838 days ago
    emoticon emoticon Spark people is so supportive of all of the members. We have our own community of friends. Yet we don't know them personally but spiritually they are our family and friends.
    2838 days ago
  • DIETER27
    emoticon emoticon emoticon Loads of support and encouragement on this site.
    2838 days ago
  • SIA1308
    Be strong for yourself and for her! That is the best mind set! And just cherish it all!
    2838 days ago
    2838 days ago
    So true. The genuine sincerity, unconditional support, and friendship I have found on SP is incredible.
    2838 days ago
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    2838 days ago
    A really good blog, thanks for writing it. You hit on many of the points that keep us here on Spark people. Hope that you get to enjoy your darling pet for a long time yet.
    We had to put our sweet LEMON down last Christmas( see photo with me) he had cancer, was a rescue we had for about five years. He was so loved. Now we foster dogs and this coming Sept will be working as a volunteer at our local animal shelter too.
    Spark people is a very supportive place, been here three and a half years myself.
    2838 days ago
    I totally agree with you and glad to hear that your little doggie is feeling better.

    My Cocoa Bean lived to 17 and for a 30 pound dog, that was amazing.
    So much a part of our families.

    Hooray for Sparkpeople!
    2838 days ago
    What a very nice story, and it just serves to remind me, to allow all this support in helping me as well as many others, with their ups and downs, and struggles
    2838 days ago

    Comment edited on: 7/12/2013 6:54:12 AM
  • no profile photo CD13361234
    The great part about Sparkpeople is that they love everyone!
    2838 days ago
    Thanks for the words. I am new here and its good to here from people who are on the same journey I am on. emoticon
    2838 days ago
  • JIBBIE49
    Week of 07/11/2013 - Featured Blog Post

    Why This is So Much More than a Diet

    emoticon Great to see your blog featured in the Spark Mail. What an honor.
    2839 days ago
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    Disclaimer: Weight loss results will vary from person to person. No individual result should be seen as a typical result of following the SparkPeople program.