MY 500 Pound Life!

Last week as I was channel surfing for something to watch on television (as I frequently do because even with a couple hundred channels to watch – there is NEVER anything good on TV!) I came across a show on the TLC Network called, My 600 Pound Life.

The title is pretty self-explanatory. This is a program about morbidly obese people baring their souls in a desperate attempt to get medical intervention for their out of control weight/health issues. I couldn’t tell you if anyone on this program got the much-needed help they sought because honestly, I wasn’t able to sit through an entire episode. Image result for images for TLC my 600 pound life

The show was difficult to watch, not because I was repulsed by the large people being featured – but their pain, both physical and mental filled me with such sadness and empathy I had to turn the channel after the first 10 minutes.

Clearly, people who reach that level of obesity have more than “just a little eating problem” going on. Someone who weighs 400 – 700 pounds or more doesn’t simply wake up one morning to discover they’re as big as a Kodiak bear. To amass that amount of weight it would seem likely that each of these people have some sort of story to tell. There are obvious medical reasons why someone might weigh that much, but most likely there is a lifetime of sadness, depression, abuse (physical, verbal, mental or sexual) that might cause someone to “eat their feelings” to such a degree that they end up weighing 600 pounds.

Everybody’s got a story. Maybe some of our stories aren’t as obvious as someone who weighs a half-ton, but if you take the time to really talk to someone, it doesn’t take long to discover that each of us are dealing with our own stuff.  Most of us have things we try to hide that can make us unhappy or miserable. There are no completely “normal” problem-free people. They do not exist.

I may not weigh 600 pounds, but in the past I’ve felt the pain of being obese. I’ve been ridiculed or talked about because of my weight – so I can only imagine that someone who is 600 plus pounds probably never wants to leave their house. People can be mean and if you are so large you can’t even weigh on a regular doctor’s scale – there are going to be people who will blatantly ridicule, tease and shame someone of that size. Image result for shame of obesity

If I were to add up all of the pounds I’ve gained and lost since I went on my first diet at the age of 14, the number would likely total around 500 pounds. How is that possible? I’ve lost and regained the same 30, 40 and 50 pounds more than 10 times throughout my life.  That’s my story. Each and every time I regained weight that was difficult to lose, I was eating my way through life’s problems: unresolved childhood molestation and depression, divorce, rejection, the death of both of my parents. My story – your story … we’ve all got a story.

It’s common knowledge that if you lose X amount of weight, when you regain it (as so many do), you typically add an additional 10 pounds to the previously lost amount. The number of people who actually lose weight and keep it off long-term (2-5 years) is less than 5%. Image result for yo-yo dieting

I finally woke up and realized what I was doing to my body as a result of years of yo-yo weight losses and gains. My revelation happened a couple of years ago during a routine Bible study. My epiphany struck me like a thunderbolt.  Two Scriptures that I “stumbled” upon caused me to question … were these Scriptures always in the Bible – or did somebody just add them?  I was quite familiar with the Scripture in 1 Corinthians 6. This is a verse I always reference whenever I do a book signing for my diet devotional book, Diet Nuggets and Wisdom Appetizers.  However, when I paired this Scripture with 1 Chronicles 28:20, God may as well have been talking to me through a bullhorn.

 Don’t you realize that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, who lives in you and was given to you by God? You do not belong to yourself, for God bought you with a high price. So you must honor God with your body. 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 (NLT) 

Then David continued, “Be strong and courageous, and do the work. Don’t be afraid or discouraged, for the Lord God, my God, is with you. He will not fail you or forsake you. He will see to it that all the work related to the Temple of the Lord is finished correctly. 1 Chronicles 28:20 (NLT)

When I read these verses I feel as those God is standing right beside me letting me know He’s in this whole weight loss thing with me. When I feel down or depressed because losing weight and maintaining a weight loss is so tough, God is telling me to stay strong – don’t get discouraged because He is right there with me. This verse pretty much guarantees me that God is not going to let me travel this road all alone. He is promising me that He’s in it for the long haul until ALL OF THE WORK that needs to be done in MY temple is completed. As far as I’m concerned, He’s talking about me and my body.  Image result for MY body is the temple of the holy spirit

I am so encouraged by these Scriptures, so much so that whenever I feel myself being pulled back into the pit; caving into the darkness and despair of my old life – I pull out these Scriptures that I’ve printed on a 3×5 index card. I read them and re-read them over and over again until I feel that peace that only God can give. I may not think I have the strength for this healthy lifestyle for THE REST OF MY LIFE, but God has assured me it’s more than just a possibility. This is my reality as long as I include God at every turn.

My 500 pound life is my past. My temple, while currently under construction – WILL BE FINISHED CORRECTLY someday.  That’s my story and I’m sticking to it!

What’s YOUR story!

QUOTE OF THE DAY:

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… If Menopause Were a Theme Park

Since I’ve recently published a daily devotional book that deals with losing weight, healthy eating and conquering self-esteem issues, I’m finding that I think about what’s going on in my body (and to my body) a lot. I’ve been in this on-again/off-again semi-serious dating relationship with Mr. Menopause for the better part of a decade so what’s happening to my body is front and center reminding me daily that I’m not a young woman any more.

While most of what happens to a woman’s body during this special time of our lives (pfftt … like we didn’t hear that lie when we were going through puberty) isn’t a laughing matter, I’ve discovered that if I don’t laugh about it, I’d spend every waking moment hosting a pity party (table for one).  Menopause symptoms have a way of reducing me to tears and occasional self-loathing.  Some days it’s difficult to leave the house. What is a girl supposed to do?

… She starts thinking that the change of life would be a lot more enjoyable if menopause was a fun place to visit – like Disneyland.  If menopause were a theme park, adventure seekers would be greeted at the front gate by Mr. Menopause and Mr. Gravity; the official Menopause Land ambassadors.  This diplomatic duo would present you with the official Menopause Land tee shirt that is equipped with a specially designed muffin top that encircles your waistline acting as a personal floatation device.  Hold on to that PFD because you’ll need it in the event of unexpected water emergencies that occur with regularity during excessive laughter, sneezing and/or bouts of coughing.

The “adventure” begins with … WOOT! WOOT! ALL ABOARD The Change Train that will loop the park making various stops for attractions and exhilarating rides for thrill seekers.  The first stop in the park will be Insomnia Island where we leave the train and board a boat to circle a moat that goes round and round and round with no clear destination in mind.  We’re tossed and turned on the wavy moat for seven or eight hours until we’re so tired all we want to do is sleep. Just as we’re about to drift off for a dreamless respite, we’re awakened by ear-piercing alarms and rudely ejected and forced to re-board The Change Train.

A few of the other stops along the train route are: Booty Falls, The Neighborhood of Night Sweats, the Hot Flash Zone, The Hall of Dressing Room Mirrors and Celibate Station.  Some of the favorite thrill rides include The Bladder Sling, The Mammo Smasher and everyone’s favorite, The Pap Smear Coaster.

Just as Mickey Mouse is synonymous with Disneyland as the official Magic Kingdom mascot, Menopause Land has its own mascot, or more appropriately, mascots.  The mascots of Menopause Land are seven dwarfs named: Frumpy, Bumpy, Lumpy, Grumpy, Weepy, Sleepy and Dopey. 

We meet Frumpy dwarf when we visit Saggy Junction. This is the land where you are made to feel as unattractive as possible while sporting your PFD.  Frumpy bestows upon you lovely complimentary park souvenirs which consist of saggy breasts, droopy buttocks and under arm skin flab. These “souvenirs” are publicly displayed when you visit The Hall of Dressing Room Mirrors where you’re forced to view your frumpiness from every conceivable angle under glaring lights.

Bumpy dwarf sprinkles you with the fairy dust of Menopause Land which is a combination of liver spots and strawberry colored moles that dot your body from head-to-toe and are lovingly referred to as “old lady moles.”

Lumpy dwarf waves his magic wand and deposits pockets of cellulite helter-skelter in prominent places over your body concentrating on the backs of your thighs, your upper arms, stomach and your droopy buttocks.

Grumpy dwarf beats you with an ugly stick causing you to growl at passersby with little or no provocation which is followed by raging tirades of snarky repartee and cynicism.

Weepy dwarf just wants to give you a hug that makes you cry and you don’t even know why.  Sleepy dwarf hypnotizes you and leads you around in a yawning funk teasing you with the promise of a nap that never comes.  And Dopey Dwarf just makes fun of you and makes you feel stupid because you can’t remember why you even boarded the train in the first place or what you’re supposed to do while you’re there.

The only way to procure expulsion from Menopause Land is to successfully evade the clutches of the park’s evil nemesis:  Aunt Flo and her faithful dog, Spot. If you can avoid any and all contact with this pesky pair for 12 consecutive months you are given a “get out of menstrual bondage” free card and granted immediate release from the park.

If you think you’re too young to worry about being forced aboard The Change Train, beware!  Mr. Menopause and Mr. Gravity roam about hoping to catch women in their 30s unawares. They’ve also been known to stalk women well into their sixties.  No one is immune!

If you don’t find any of this the least bit amusing and think I’ve slipped off the deep end and am writing utter garbage; in my defense I’ve been triple-teamed this week and am being held hostage by Sleepy, Weepy and Dopey who are forcing me to ramble incoherently while trying to make sense of the hostile takeover happening in my middle-age body.

Perhaps menopause wouldn’t be considered such a depressing malady if we were promised something exciting at the end of the journey. You know … like the perky breasts we end up with once we’re through puberty.  Alas, all that we’re left with once we’ve safely navigated our way through menopause is facial hair and saggy breasts that we can conveniently tuck in the waistband of our jeans.  If there is bright side though, at least our muffin top will have plenty of company!

As always … Happy Reading …

Kathy K.

 

“A cheerful disposition is good for your health;
gloom and doom leave you bone-tired.”

Proverbs 17:22 (The Message Bible)