Tuesday, April 5, 2011

April 5, 2011

Today I weighed myself and the scale read 308lbs......there now everyone knows.  I feel like I am at an AA meeting, finally admitting to myself somethings that needs to change in my life.  Don't misunderstand, I have been fully aware that I am morbidly obese for years.  And, I am under no illusions that anyone taking a good look at me hasn't figured it out for themselves as well.  But, there are very few people with whom I have shared the actual number.

308lbs. is actually good compared to where I was at in 2009.  My top weight was in August that year when I weighed in at 329lbs.  Since that time I have literally tried everything to get those 21 lbs.off  -Kettlebells, YRG Yoga, walking, running (till the treadmill stopped operating underneath my weight), karate kata, Weight Watchers, Jay Robb protein shakes, extreme low carb diets, Primal Blueprint, and plain old just not eating.  I have had some success with the Primal Blueprint diet but my weight has been at a stall since December of 2010.

Feeling the stress of turning 41 in April I decided to try something new to help the weight loss process along.  I ordered some diet shakes from QVC and they are suppose to arrive today.  I don't hold out tremendous hope that these shakes are the magic cure.  But, moving forward and trying is psychologically so much better than sitting around feeling defeated.  In preparation for my new diet, I decided to start cleaning out some of the clutter in my house.  I started in the office because that has become the general dumping ground for everything that doesn't have a permanent home around here.  I am attempting to write a children's book so I need some space to work (don't worry I am under no illusion that I have a real chance of getting published but it is something I have always wanted to do so I am trying it).  While cleaning I found an autographed picture of knife throwing extraordinaire, Joseph Darrah, that he was kind enough to give me for my 40th birthday last year.

I've always been a strange mixture of wounded little girl and big, bad warrior.  Usually each trait comes out at the most inappropriate times.  To calm down my warrior side I started taking martial arts in my 20's.  That was the best time of my life and I even ended up marrying a black belt from my dojo (BTW-my husband is pretty much the most amazing person you will ever meet).  Then in my 30's I started getting so sick that I had to quit karate and working and pretty much everything.  I was like an ill zombie for years.  Finally around 2008, I was diagnosed with Celiacs Disease.  Finding out how to get well again was a huge miracle in my life and it gave me hope to go back to karate.  Because of all of the years I was so sick my body had balooned up to over 300lbs.  But being full of hope, I went back to see my Sensei  because he always said that when you gain weight the best place for you is the dojo.  "Get back to exercise and health through the ancient Okinawan practise of karate", he would explain.  Well, I went to see him  he said I couldn't come back to karate until I was close to my ideal weight.  That killed me.  I totally understood his concern to keep me from hurting myself while working out but it broke my heart.  The frustration of trying to get my weight down and failing has only made that heart ache grow stronger every day.

On my 40th birthday, I decided to try to do something new for myself to help get out of my funk.  The funk was over turning 40, being over 300lbs, not allowed to be in the dojo, not having a career, and not having a child. Basically, everything in my life except for being happily married was wrong (I do realize that being happily married is no small thing and I am grateful).  So, when things get tough, the tough decide to handle their midlife crisis by learning how to throw knives.  Fortunately for me, one of the best knife throwers in the world lives 20 minutes from my house.  I contacted him via email and Mr. Darrah graciously set up a time on my birthday weekend to teach us knife throwing.  This would turn out to be the best day of my life.

Mr. Darrah is a tall and physically imposing man.  He sorta reminded me of Paul Sr. from Orange County Choppers.  He turned out to be the kindest person and a phenomenal teacher.  I normally walk around feeling very self conscious about my weight and that day I was literally terrified that Mr. Darrah might reject me as a student.  But, from the minute I met him I could tell my weight didn't matter to him one bit.  He was just excited to share his sport with two more people.  I actually started out doing really well with the knife throwing, almost getting a perfect throw on my first attempt (see picture above).  But, then I started thinking about what I was doing and getting really nervous. Each throw got further from the target. Finally Mr. Darrah told me to try something different.  He had me stare at the target and then close my eyes.  He had me visualize the target and then throw.  I threw about six knives and around four of them hit the target perfectly.  He had me open my eyes to see how well I had done.  He explained to me that by closing my eyes I had temporarily turned off my negative brain because it couldn't see what I was doing.  With my eyes closed it was just me, the knives, and the target.  It allowed me to just be in the moment.  When I got out of my own way I was able to accomplish my goal.  That was the best, most powerful lesson anyone has ever taught me.  I have been thinking about it every day since then.

While cleaning the office today I found that autographed picture that Mr. Darrah gave me last year. It was his birthday present to me. We had recently done some painting in the house and had taken the picture down for a few months.  As I put it back up on the wall I was struck by what he taught me last year.  It was like it took my  brain all this time to really process the lesson.  Kinda like the time it takes for your eyes to see again after looking directly at the sun.  Something clicked and I got it.  Yes, my weight is a problem.  But, my real problem is the way I think about it and me.  Usually I am so negative that I sabatoge any success that I may achieve.  It is time to get out of my own way and just blindly throw that metaphorical knife to see what I can hit.

Mr. Darrah I will always be grateful to you for teaching me this.

The dragon has always been a symbol of the martial artist.  My father always said to me that everyone has their own dragon to slay.  This blog is going to be about my earnest attempt to get my life back on track.  It is tough for me to be this honest, usually I don't tell people much about myself.  But, for some reason writing about this process feels really important to me. I will try to keep my posts much shorter than this one and I hope they don't bore you.  Thank you for reading this and please wish me luck!

No comments:

Post a Comment