Struggling with my new Lifestyle Change (diet)

So I have been trying to become more healthier since January this year and I have been very successful, losing over 80 pounds. Up until my emotional breakdown in May, I really did a good job of staying on track. There were times that my emotional state was low and I still stayed on track in regards to my eating habits.

Ever since my breakdown I have struggled to stay on track and lately I have stayed off track for long periods of time. Plus I have started to care less about over eating and going over my daily calorie intake, which really worries me because that is how I always fall off the wagon. Twice during the past few weeks I have went days not watching my calorie intake and going clearly over my limit. The first time the time span was six days. This week I have been off my diet since Wednesday.

I have awaken something within me that has turned off my will power and I am struggling to turn it back on. I have gained some weight back and I find myself getting discouraged by that. I am also having problems with legs again, especially my one knee. I think one of my issues that my food choices while I am dieting are limited. I have been living off Smart One’s Chicken Fettuccini meals and as much as I love them, it is getting old. With my depression I find it difficult to prepare a big meal.

I have also noticed craving Pepsi more. Wednesday I had a very strong urge to have Pepsi, the strongest yet to date. I ended up getting a 24 ounce can, though I really wanted to get a one liter. So I am still showing constrain and that’s good. In the past Pepsi is my gateway of giving up on my dieting, so I have to be very watchful of this. I am also eating pizza more often, which is another indicator. Whenever I get pizza it usually means going over my calorie limit, which is fine if it is on occasion.

I am worried because I don’t want to gain all my weight back. I know that it is common to take some step backwards, especially since I have been living so unhealthy for all of my adult life. I can handle the back steps because so far I always keep moving forward but what worries me is this feeling of not caring about overeating and going over my calorie count. That frightens me big time!!!

I have realized that how I feel about myself correlates to my choices and behaviors. The less I feel about myself, the less will power I have. My goal this week is to put up positive keywords all over my living space downstairs, to help encourage me. I also need to brainstorm and come up with new ideas for food.

I also need to push myself more, especially when it comes to physical activity… which is going to be tough with my hurt knee. I don’t have a choice, it is something I have to do…

Monday I am going back on track. I know they say it takes a good year to change a habit, so I just have to hang tight and expect this ride is going to get bumpy at times… and occasionally my cart will veer off the track!!!


Yay, I am 401!!!

The last time I was weighed was on Thanksgiving and I was 417lbs… So it is nice to be close to the 400 mark. I will be extremely happy when I am in the 300’s!

I am not as happy as I probably should be. I guess I thought I was under 400 pounds by now. Though chances are that I was over 417 pounds with the holidays, etc. So who knows how much exactly I have lost? So I really need to consider that when looking at my progress. I knew cutting the Pepsi out of my diet would drop a decent amount of weight.

So this weekend I really struggled with my will power and self control in regards to eating. It was like this weekend all my will power disappeared. Saturday was particularly rough as I felt a lot of anxiety that day. I was constantly wanting to drown my feelings out. I found myself over eating on certain items like Pringles. Even though I struggled I still stayed on target for my calories. My sister got the kid’s hot n’ ready’s from Little Caesars. I really wanted to pig out on pizza, as I was craving it all day, but I still only had a couple of slices.  I really had to fight my cravings.

Sundays battle was an apple fritter. I wanted it so badly. I mean really bad!!! It was calling my name, loudly!!! I resisted and thankfully my niece ate it before I could cave in.

Today I did not win the donut battle. There was one lone donut left, a glazed bow tie donut. Wow, even my spell checker is trying to take donut out of my vocabulary by saying I have it spelled incorrectly… I really resisted a good part of the day but then something just clicked and I grabbed it, not after checking the calorie count on my phone. (300 calories) I won’t lie it tasted delicious.

I think I might be trying too hard, not allowing myself to have things I like. I need to be mindful of this as it can lead to me quitting all together. Even with having that yummy donut I still was still well within my daily calorie limit. If I tell myself I can’t have certain items I will eventually cave in and pig out… Another option is only having half of the donut, which I didn’t do… 🙂

I am still surprised on the calorie count of certain food, like butter and margarine. 100 calories for 1 tablespoon of butter??? What??? I am learning to still have the food I like but modifying the ingredients to make it more healthy. Like for example Kraft Macaroni & Cheese I only used one tablespoon of margarine. By doing that I was able to cut down on the calorie and fat contents.

I am learning to maximize my calories and thinking about my choices. Like a ham sandwich with wheat bread can save me over 100 calories, instead of white bread. I am also realizing what food items will fill me up and choosing those items when I am most hungry.

I have been rather lax on my vegetables and fruit lately, so I need to pick that back up. Though I have been trying to drink some amount of water each day.

I have also started to incorporate some exercise. I have learned to not exercise at night as it keeps me up all night. The last time I really danced a work out I was bouncing off the walls for hours afterwards. I am finding myself feeling guilty when I don’t do something. I have to be careful with dancing as I have noticed my knees hurting lately. I can’t wait for it to get warm outside so I can start walking.

I think the biggest thing I need to learn with this process is to be gentle with myself. I have a tendency to be very hard on myself and that is probably where I have gone wrong in the past. I feel let down and the negative voices chip away at my self esteem. Eventually I cave in and pig out, and then give up.

It is all about balance and moderation. Bad days are going to happen but they aren’t the end of the world. Tomorrow is another day to start a new. One bad day or one bad choice does’t take away from all the hard work and progress I have made the last few weeks. It is about the big picture.

This Is What I Have Learned So Far…

So I had this idea to blog about what I have learned about myself during the last few weeks of becoming more healthier with my food choices…

– I don’t chew my food. I take big bites and swallow. I have to remind myself to take small bites and chew… Seems simple but not for me. Honestly I am not even really getting a chance to taste the food this way. I need to slow down and savor my food. I will enjoy it much more.

– I love green beans about the only vegetable I do like minus corn and potatoes. I know they aren’t a veggie! Granted I usually put butter and salt on my green beans but this is a great start. and no… I don’t like broccoli, or lettuce… or _________… (any other veggie people ask me)

– Wheat, flour, etc not only has a lot of calories but carbs as well. I have to admit I LOVE bread…

– Anything sweet you can bet it will be over 100 calories and that is on the modest side… and a small portion at that. I do love my sweets though. It will be something I work on down the road.

– Pork has a lot of sodium. Sodium is another thing I will need to work on down the road, especially with my high blood pressure.

– Buy fresh chicken breast, not the frozen in the bag… The frozen variety isn’t as healthy as it has a higher sodium count. I’ve known this for a while but felt it was a good tip to share with others.

– Posting pictures of your food not only helps with encouragement and support from others but also something to be proud of. I am proud of my choice to be more healthy. It can also keep you honest, if your beans are covered in butter… oppss!!! 🙂

– When you are really depressed small chores like brushing your teeth seem momentousness. It feels like you are moving mountains with that toothbrush! Also I have be very careful because when I get depressed I am more likely to self medicate with unhealthy food.

– I love to snack… Having healthier food around like fruit will help me make better choices.

– I struggle with knowing when I am full. Trying to lose weight when you an emotional eater is tough. I am learning to suffer through hunger pains, at least I think they are hunger pains. Usually in the past I know I am full when I am stuffed but I am trying to not do that. So it makes it a big challenge.

-Applesauce is yummy… plus it is a drink, a dessert, a fruit and a food group all in one. The little snack cups are very convenient.

-I forced myself to eat broccoli the other day. I will admit it wasn’t easy… and it didn’t taste very well either…. At least I tried it!!! 🙂

-I haven’t had a Pepsi in almost two weeks, not even a 20 ounce. Granted I did have a fountain drink of coke and mt. dew a few times.. but still no Pepsi.

– Obviously water is very important and I really don’t drink it… I have found the vitamin enhanced water beverages to be very good. They are zero calorie. They do have 7 carbs though. I have started to drink these until I can switch over to regular water, which I hope to do soon. I have found that I will drink water more if I have a container that has a pop top, I need to get me one.

– Quaker Stila crispy oat cookie bars are the weirdest thing I have ever ate. It has a very weird texture and very little taste. It must be what cardboard tastes like… Who knew that cardboard had 100 calories!!

– Sugar can cause joint pain and inflammation. I noticed when I was drinking Pepsi heavily I would have severe joint pain to the point where I had trouble with mobility. I struggled getting up and down, walking and keeping my knees at certain angles. Now that I am off the Pepsi my joint pain is almost gone, same for the lack of mobility. This is a huge incentive to not drink Pepsi!!!

– I don’t like to call what I am doing a diet… That is such a naughty word for me. It seems so restrictive and limiting. For me it is about becoming more healthy, thinking about what I put into my body. I think losing weight is all about finding what works for you.

– I am not telling myself I can’t ever have certain food, even Pepsi… because when I do that I am just putting the item in my hand. Moderation is key. Counting my calories helps me still have the food I like plus helps me to add foods that are more healthy. If I have only 500 calories left for the day, I am less likely to choose a sweet that will take up all those points. Having choices helps me a lot.

– I haven’t had pizza in over a week. This is another huge feat for me because Pizza is my favorite food. Again it is moderation. Tomorrow I am treating myself to pizza. Now the bigger challenge will be not getting Pepsi with my pizza, which is something I usually always do. They go hand to hand with each other. Though the last time I had pizza I didn’t get a Pepsi. Which was the first time in ages that I have done that!!!

– I ate vegetables four days in a row. I think I probably had more veggies in four days than I have ate the last two years minus potatoes and corn. Plus I have been eating apples as well. I need to start eating more fruit, since I am not a huge fan of veggies. I also should try to like carrots. They are the only veggie I can tolerate outside of green beans. I don’t dislike carrots, I just never been a fan. They have a weird texture.

– Since becoming more healthy (the weight loss I can notice also helps) I notice I am looking at myself differently in the mirror. I still don’t like what I see but I am liking my body better. I still have times when I look in the mirror and ugly comes to mind. So this is going to be a long process and won’t only involve diet changes but therapy as well.

– Now that I am counting my calories I am noticing often times I stay well under my daily limit. This is usually when I make my meals at home. When I eat out, I usually am at my limit!!! Looking at the ingredient labels of food has been a totally shocking experience, like for example Kraft Macaroni & Cheese!!! I love KMC, it is one of my favorite foods. When I first started to calorie count I ate a whole box thinking the calories wouldn’t be that much… well 1200 calories later I was shocked.

– Don’t be afraid to ask a restaurant for a calorie guide for the food. If they are a large chain they most likely will have it. When we took my niece out to Old Chicago the waitress brought us one and it helped me pick out my food.

– I use MyFitnessPal to count my calories. It is totally free!!! You can scan products and search their endless database for items. They even have restaurants as well. They have a great app for android, iPhone, etc. Even if you don’t have a high tech phone you can use their website:

Well I think this is plenty. I am sure this list will grow as the weeks pass by. Hope this helps others. Huggs

Awareness is the Key

So I really didn’t set any resolutions and I usually don’t. It is not like I don’t have anything that I would like to change. It’s just I have a history of when I fail at a resolution feeling pretty bad about myself. So I have learned to not set myself up for failure.

I can see why people do set resolutions being that it is a new year… A new year to a new me. I do like the idea behind it. I certainly was ready to start a new year, after the year I had. Though no amount of time would make me forget what I went through.

One of the last conversations I had with my Mother was her making me promise to work on my weight. I sometimes wonder if she didn’t know she was going to die. I don’t even like to think about that.

So I am attempting becoming more healthy in my life. I don’t like to use that naughty word… DIET!!! Something about that word leaves a very bad taste in my mouth. It feels so constricting, hard to stomach.

My recent discovery of how I view my body (dirty) has helped me with my choices when it comes to eating. One of my main food crutches is Pepsi. There is something about the sweetness that really gets me going. When I consistently drink it daily it does a number on my body, both with the weight I gain and my mobility with my knees and legs. When you drink at least a two liter of Pepsi a day, it is easy to start packing on the pounds. The last year I started to have issues with my knees. It got to the point where I struggled with walking and getting around. Recently I discovered when I stop drinking Pepsi my leg issues seem to disappear. My therapist pointed out that the sugar was probably aggravating my joints. I had never knew that was possible.

It has been over a week since I drank Pepsi consistently. I won’t lie it has been very tough to give up. There have been moments that I really craved the taste but I would think about the paint that was associated with it and it stopped me from buying a Pepsi. One of my weaknesses with Pepsi is whenever I eat pizza, they go hand to hand. I can’t remember the last time I had pizza without Pepsi. Well last Friday night I stopped at Little Caesars to buy a baby pan pizza. Wouldn’t you know that they had a cooler stacked full of yummy Pepsi. It was like I was being tested by the Pepsi God’s… My first thought was to buy a two liter but that is usually how it starts. I will get one two liter, then another… Before you know it I am back to drinking Pepsi. So I thought well I will get a 20 oz. of Pepsi… but I didn’t think that was big enough to quench my thirst. There was a Speedway gas station next door and I said to myself, I can get a one liter there.

Then something just clicked. I remembered I had some diet soda in my car. So I resisted all my urges and had diet soda with my pizza in the first time in years. It felt like a victory, even though I thought Pepsi would have tasted so much better! 🙂

As much as I love the taste of Pepsi it isn’t worth or equal to the pain and lack of mobility that Pepsi causes. So Pepsi and I must go our separate ways. Now I am not going to say I won’t ever have one again because that just sets me up to fail. If I tell myself I can’t have something, I will always do it. Plus this way if I do have a Pepsi I won’t have all the guilt for failing my commandment.

Awareness is monumental for me. Sure there is a lot more I could be doing but having the awareness is one big step forward for me.

Years ago I went to this meditation group where the mediator talked about awareness. She basically said that those who are at the awareness step need to give themselves a lot more credit. That being aware is a huge level of progress and so much further ahead than not being aware. When you are aware you can begin to change and grow. It is at awareness where real change begins. Sure you could be further ahead by taking action but you will get there. Take baby steps. Allow yourself to breath.

The process of awareness is very much like throwing pebbles into a pond, the ripples of which will radiate out positively, far and wide. Your awareness of something will radiate energy throughout your body.

I certainty have had my exposure with awareness but this is the first time that I have really went deep into my issues. I think my biggest struggle with losing the weight is I wasn’t identifying the real problem. I was treating the effect, not the problem. Being able to realize that I view my body as dirty has been revolutionary in making healthy choices.

Being healthy I am finding is rather intimidating. Becoming healthy is going to be a lifestyle change for me. As panicky as it makes me feel, I must do this!!! The consequences if I don’t are severe. Seeing my Mom in the hospital like she was, with the COPD from smoking, seriously has put a few things in my life in perspective. I know if I don’t make different choices I am bound to have a similar situation with diabetes, etc.

So I am not calling it a diet but I am starting to count my calories. Thankfully there is this very easy to use calorie counter app on my phone. I can even scan the item and it will do all the work for me. With my weight I get close to 2500 calories a day, which isn’t bad at all. For me it is about taking baby steps. The bigger step I take, the more likely I will fall. So slow and steady wins the race. I am done with jumping!!!

Being an emotional eater is tough. So to change my habits at a time where I desperately need to eat my feelings away is very challenging. I keep trying to think about the consequences of a choice. Though there are times when my need to bury my feelings are so extreme that I barely can see or feel the consequence attached to the action!

I have ate so unhealthy for so many years that it has become a way of life for me. If it is healthy chances are I will not eat it, for example vegetables. The only vegetables that I will eat are green beans and sweet potatoes. I also like corn and potatoes but I know those are fake veggies! When ever I tell people my list of vegetables that I eat they always say well what about _______? Then I say what about ONLY do you not understand! 🙂 and NO, I do not like salads!

So that limits me on my choices and I am not quite at the point of my life where I can eat foods that I don’t like… I get that as well, why don’t you try them… For me it is working on the things I can like cutting out regular soda. Sure I know that diet soda isn’t good for me either but for the amount of regular soda I drink this is a better alternative. Eventually I will work on cutting out diet soda but there is a time and place for that. I am also working on including water into my diet. Lately I have been drinking these vitamin enhanced water beverages that my sister got, they are pretty good! The moral of the story is do what works for you. Set reasonable and small goals. I have to get healthier in layers or it will never stick.

Hopefully one day I can learn the art of moderation and will power but until then I will work on this.

Whenever I start to count my calories I am surprised with the amount of calories that are in some items. Eating out is at a minimum 1k calories, especially at fast food. Did you know that Kraft Macaroni & Cheese is 1200 calories, if you eat the whole box. KMC is one of my favorite meals. I like quick and easy, and it is just the right amount of cheese for me! Who knew that a bowl full of cheesey goodness was so many calories??? Eating a whole bowl is almost half of my allowed calories for the day.

Vegetables aren’t my only demon when it comes to my eating habits, as you can see by my mac and cheese choice… Pizza, fried food, bacon… OH MY!!! Pizza is my one downfall. I could live on pizza. Again it is about moderation. When I was at Little Caesars the other night I thought about getting a whole pizza but then I thought about all that leftover pizza. That was just too much temptation so I got a baby pan instead. When a slice of pepperoni pizza is around 300 calories a slice, having left overs is probably not a great choice for me right now.

I am trying to eat more healthy even though I still eat unhealthy things like french fries. I took a trip to the local grocery store to try to get some healthy food. I even pushed my cart into vegetable section. Granted I didn’t buy anything but still I looked… I need to incorporate fruit into my diet. I really like fruit but I tend to forget to eat it or it goes bad before I get to it. I love grapes.

The issue I currently have is with my depression. There are times I don’t feel like cooking an elaborate meal. I also forget to eat sometimes. The other day I had forgotten to eat. I found myself starving and over an hour away from home. Finding a place to get a bite to eat that was somewhat healthy became somewhat of a problem. I drove around and around… Eventually I caved and ate at McDonald’s .. Which is probably the worst place I could have chosen. I ended up getting a grilled chicken sandwich with a medium fry and a diet coke. I only ate half of my fry, talk about self control! Though I did have a cherry pie at 250 calories! 🙂 Even though I was well under my calorie limit for the day, I noticed feeling guilty for eating there. Mainly because when I eat fast food it takes away a big chunk of my calories and limits what I can eat for the rest of the day.

One thing I have learned about calorie counting is taking steps to make it easier for me to eat better. Like for example when I get grapes I try to bag them in serving sizes. By doing this it helps me when I am feeling down and don’t want to prepare something. This way I have something ready when I am hungry. I did the same thing with the chicken breasts I got this week. I also am trying to keep around snacks that are healthy, that I like. I notice if I don’t have anything available that is healthier I will break down and eat something unhealthy. So having healthy snacks around are going to be important for me.

Another goal of mine is to start becoming more active. I bowled two games last week and it about killed me. When it gets warmer out, I hope to start walking. Again I have to take baby steps. I have started to park further back when I go to stores. Anything will help, that is how I look at it. I am learning to push myself. I wanted to quit after the first game but I bowled another one. One of the things I use to love to do is going out dancing. There is no way I could dance in the shape I am in now but I will one day be able to.

Not only am I tackling becoming more physically healthy but I am also working on the emotional side to it as well. I am working hard to take better care of myself from the inside to out. I can’t wait for anyone to come rescue me. I have to do it!!!

I don’t have the luxury to wait anymore. The time is now to take better care of myself. Loving myself inside and out. I deserve it!!! I wouldn’t tolerate someone treating someone I loved this way, so why do I tolerate treating myself this way??? This may be new territory for me but it will keep at it until it sticks!

One breath will turn into a lifetime filled full of happiness, laughter and fulfillment. I guess it is all about balance. I am learning to build a strong foundation, one brick at a time. Turning my house into a home, inside my secret garden. A sanctuary that no one will be able to knock down.

Awareness is the seed (key) planted in my secret garden.

I am ugly…

That is what I said to myself when I looked into the mirror tonight.

Ugly. Hideous. Fat.

These are all words that are running through my mind right now.

Unlovable. Worthless. Unwanted.

These are meanings behind those words.

I looked into the mirror and I was disgusted at what I saw. It is a feeling that I don’t care for. It doesn’t make me feel so hot.

I don’t always see ugly, hideous or fat when I look in the mirror but when I do it makes me shiver.

Part of the way I feel about myself is my recent weight gain. I think about having sex with another guy and my first thought is no one will want to touch me. You would think that would be motivation enough to go on a diet but it isn’t.

This has came up in therapy. I wonder if I use my weight as layer of protection. The heavier I am, the less likely it is I will be with someone… making it very unlikely I will ever get hurt.

I also realize that the way I feel about myself isn’t just about the weight.

I personalize everything.

I login to various gay social sites and I am faced with all these guys with muscles, who look nothing like me. Even the ones that say they are just looking friendship don’t even respond back. I obviously am not attractive enough to be their friend. See that is where the personalization gets me in trouble every time!!!

The whole online gay lifestyle is very disheartening at times. It is very much like a meat market especially the sites that allow nudity in your pictures. I mean I am gay but it doesn’t mean I want to stare at penis all the time. Then you have the headless horsemen gay guys. Then on top of all of that you have porno ads all over. Am I the only one that gets turned off by all of this?

I mean is that all there is to life, sex??? I don’t think so…

When you are fat, you become this joke. Often times you are the one starting the joke. I guess it is easier to laugh off the reality then face the truth. Growing up your told your too fat, you need to lose weight. The kids stare and call you names.

Just look at our culture and how we treat a person’s size. All you have to do is turn on the television and see all the weight loss ads. Look at me all skinny and fabulous, you can do it too!!! I am not saying that being healthy is a bad thing but at what cost??? Just look at all the photoshopping that is done to pictures on magazines.

It is all this comparing that does harm.

Even in the bear community lately I have felt out of place. On the bear sites I rarely get a response back from someone not my size. When that happens the wheels of personalizing start to turn. Some will argue that these sites are just for one thing online, hooking up… but I have to believe that I am not the only one out there looking for meaningful connections???

Recently I have heard from gay guys, who are not fat, have the same problem as I do… as in they never hear back from people. So what in the world is going on??? Has the invention of the iPhone and Android made it too easy? I mean it certainly has made it easier to find people, right down to their location. More options means more choices. Is it the whole grass is greener on the other side scenario? I mean you can always find someone hotter, just an icon over…

Being a gay sexual abuse survivor is very tough. You are constantly bombarded by superficiality. Profiles that say no fatties or hwp only. I connected how others think about my body to my self worth. I need to sever those ties because they are harmful to me. I have connected my dating struggles with being overweight… which really means I am ugly… unwanted… unlovable…  alone… forever…

There is apart of being a survivor of sexual abuse is that I have felt that was my purpose to give others pleasure. When someone takes something that isn’t yours, and then as an adult you have relationships that mirror that, you become an object.

I think in many ways I eat away my feelings because it is a way for me to protect myself. I know that it is all connected to the abuse. Often times it feels like a part of me is still trapped in that bedroom. I wish it were as easy as turning off a switch.

I guess the difference is that I am now aware of these ugly feelings and I am working on overcoming them. I have to remind myself that I am not my feelings. Loneliness is a tough feeling for me and often the beginning of my downward spirals. I really need to be aware of these feelings and be careful when I start to feel lonely.

I started to write about lonely and I started to think about it more. There is general loneliness where you miss being around people. Then there is the loneliness you feel because you miss having someone special in your life. I also think I kid myself that when I look online I am not trying to find a potential mate, even when I say I am just looking for friends… Maybe that is what so many guys who say they are looking for friends are doing??? Years ago, before I realized that my weight was a big issue for me, I noticed it was difficult to be friends with other guys who were big like myself. I finally realized that they were mirrors. I have since realized when it comes to friendship it is most healthy when I am not attracted to the person because sex for me complicates things.

Why do I feel I need someone in my life to be happy?

When I get really lonely I start looking online for ways to soothe my feelings. Here is how the cycle goes.

I get lonely -> look for platonic connection -> romantic connection -> sexual connection = feeling horrible, ugly, etc

Regardless if I am successful in finding someone to have sex with me I end up feeling horrible because in one situation I become an object and another no one wants me. There was a time where I was very promiscuous and did this all the time. I am thankful I have moved forward. Though I find myself trying to go backwards.

Tonight a word came to mind when I thought about having sex and my body… pure… I guess I have always saw my body as dirty. That started early on when I tried to wash away the filth from the sexual abuse.

Wow, it just dawned on me how I looked at my body. Talk about light bulbs exploding!!!

Lately I have been feeling particularly lonely with all the feelings of loss. Tonight I had a chance to hookup and I stopped myself. I realized I deserved and wanted more! Afterwards is when pure came to mind. This idea that my body is a temple. I need to start treating it like so.

I have to start looking at my body like a secret garden. Sure I have a lot of weeding to do but the walls are still strong, I just have to keep the door locked. I have planted a seed and soon life will blossom filling my garden full of beautiful flowers. I just need to be more cautious who I let inside my garden because many will try to trample or steal my flowers.

Even thought it has been close to 10 months since I’ve had sex, partly by choice, I still feel inside that my body belongs to others. I think the key to my recovery is letting that go. Just because someone took something that wasn’t theirs when I was a child, it doesn’t mean they still have it. It was and will always be mine.

It is time for me to start thinking about what I do to my body. Is what I am doing to it going to help or hurt me? As for gratuitous sex it usually means something harmful because it is too deeply connected to the sexual trauma.

So from now on I am going to start treating my body like a temple, especially when it comes to sex. I am worth more than a one night stand. The benefits don’t out way the consequences. I must burn that ideology into my brain.

I am reclaiming my body and my self worth. For too long the door to my secret garden was unhinged, stolen long ago… I have since put up a heavy duty bullet proof door with a combination lock that only I have the code for. Now I will control who I let in to see my garden, everyone else will have to look at my beauty from a far… Just because I let someone in it doesn’t mean they have full access to my garden, or control. If they begin to abuse their privileges I have the right to banish them.

I hold the key and lock. No one else does…



Anyone that is overweight can probably attest to the fact that they despise having to stand on a scale. While in the hospital I was faced with this such challenge. It was also the first time that I was weighed in a long time.


I am not sure what it is about that number that bothers me, it certainly isn’t the highest weight I have ever been. It kind of felt like a mark on my forehead that wouldn’t go away. In my head it was like all the staff saw me as 416… I no longer was Derek to them. I was this huge number.

Often times in my life I haven’t always noticed my discontent towards my size. The way I felt about myself was very subliminal. This was the first time I felt like I was wearing that number like they were two huge weights hanging off of me…

It was also a reminder of how far off balance I had let my health get. My weight has consistently stayed in the 400’s for years. Though as long as I can stay away from regular soda I usually can keep my weight around 400 pounds. With grieving over the loss of my Mama it shouldn’t have surprised me that I weighed 416 pounds but it did.

To add insult to injury it was pointed out to me by an x-ray technician that I was too large for that particular MRI machine. It is one thing to not be able to fit into a pair of jeans but a whole different low blow when you are too big for a piece of medical equipment.

I think what scares me about 416 is that a lot closer to 500… It is easy to look at someone my size or bigger and wonder how they could get that big. You don’t realize how easy it is until you are in that situation. One minute you are 400 pounds and the next you are over 500 pounds easily.

Being a comfort eater has been quite my downfall. I wish I could go back to the first time I tried to eat my feelings away. I certainly have tried to eat my feelings of sadness away after my Mom died. If it was my first choice I would drink Pepsi all the time. I also know that if I do I will easily gain fifty pounds. Even though I may not be doing everything I should, I am trying. I still do slip but I usually get back on course. I just know at some point I am going to have to take it a step further.

My life depends on it.

Seeing what my Mom went through with her health really has woken me up with my current situation. I know that if I don’t change my patterns that eventually my weight will kill me. So far I have been very blessed but my blessings won’t last forever especially with diabetes and heart disease in the family.

Plus it is not like my weight is serving a purpose. I am pretty miserable at the size I am. I am not able to enjoy life the way I want to. I can remember being the Uncle that use to be the jungle gym to his niece and nephew. Now I just feel like this old, worn out bump on a log.

That is one of the big issues with those who are my size. Moving around becomes a struggle. Carrying around all this extra weight has done a number on my knees. All these complications make it that much harder when it comes to trying to change your patterns.

Looking at the big picture is often very overwhelming for me. I see everything I need to change from my diet to my exercise habits. I have to remember to again take it step by step. I get so stuck in this all or nothing thinking. We must remember that when we take a step, it doesn’t have to be a grand gesture. Even a baby step counts. If you take a bunch of baby steps it equals to just as much distance as if you took a big step. Realistically if you are like me, you will probably go even further because you won’t be stuck on the sidelines overwhelmed staring at the big picture.

The big piece of the pie will be the emotional piece of why I am the size I am. I know that if I don’t work on that piece, it won’t matter. That is why it’s important that I continue to talk these feelings out on here and during therapy.

One of the last things I remember my Mama asking me before she died was for me to try to lose weight. She told me how worried she was. I won’t ever forget that conversation. I have to do it for her and me too!

Certainly the holidays aren’t probably the best time to loss weight but it will be my goal the first of next year. While I am not able to tackle this goal head on now there are some things I can do to help, such as limiting my Pepsi intake. Balance is the key and something I have always struggled with.

I also need to remember that I am not my number 416… Meaning that is not who I am, my weight or bad feelings. I can lose the weight and they aren’t a reflection of my beauty.