Saturday, December 5, 2015

I'm Not Afraid Anymore


It's been almost five months since I last blogged, and I wasn't planning to come back. But the other day I started thinking about how different I feel now... how changed my life is... I am. No, it's not so much about weight. It's about a change that came from inside of me.

Coming back today and re-reading the last few posts on my blog made me so sad for the me that was writing back then. I felt trapped. Stuck. And honestly, afraid. I had lost faith and hope almost completely that I could get back the happiness I had before I was injured and immobile... before my best friend died. Something *in me* died when he did, and something just shriveled up inside me and hid in a corner to avoid the physical pain of my tendon injuries and the emotional pain of losing someone so important to me as well as my ability to be as mobile as I would have liked. Even when my tendons healed and I could walk without pain again, I still felt injured... inside. I felt like I was crushed into powder and the wind was blowing me away, bit by bit.

The struggle against myself to lose weight and become healthy was another source of pain to me. I was running on the hamster wheel, getting tired and out of breath with effort but never really getting anywhere significant. If I look back at not just the blog and the dieting, but at my *life* when I left blogging, I was hurting and lost. More than anything, I was afraid.

I was afraid I would be alone. I was afraid no one could love me. I was afraid I had failed so much at so many things that there was no fixing any of it. I was afraid to do anything physical because I might injure myself and be stuck in the hellhole of being immobile again. And I was afraid of what people would think, what they would say, how they would judge me. I was afraid to try anything because I would probably fail. I was afraid of my past and afraid of my future. And I never could acknowledge all of these fears until I stepped away, stopped fighting myself, and took my life back.

I'm not afraid anymore. I have reclaimed a stake in my life.

This is not something I am proclaiming I will do. It's not a resolution or a promise or a wish. It's something I have actively done over the last half of this year and am continuing to actively do. I stepped outside of my comfort zone, confronted the fears, and have come out feeling so, so much more alive and confident.

A long time ago, I wrote that there were two "big issues" left that I knew were holding me back from progressing emotionally and with my weight loss. I never specified what they were, but they were scaring me to death and I just could not face them. Both of them have to do with personal relationships that I wanted to either mend or reconcile as a loss. And this summer, I faced one of those fears and hopped on a plane and spent over a week fixing one of those relationships. I faced what was probably my biggest fear and potential for more heartache, and I am so glad I did. I feel healed in so many ways, and this gave me the confidence to go further in mending broken things in my life and facing other things I have been afraid of, in some cases for decades.

Another catalyst for continuing this change was an episode of Extreme Weight Loss about a woman who needed to fix past hurts before she could successfully lose weight. This episode was so intense and life-changing for me and led me to take action on many things that have been hurting me for years. If you have not seen it, I highly recommend it (Season 5, Episode 11). Watching this opened a whole new world to me of what I needed to do to heal... things I never even considered doing... and I have taken action since.

I fixed a relationship with a loved one. I reopened a dialogue with my ex-husband to heal and forgive.  I wrote letters to people I have not spoken to in many years.. I took care of some financial worries and made better plans for the future. I have opened my mind to new possibilities for me and my children. I ditched my endocrinologist and found a new one that works with me in a much better way and doesn't shrug at me when I ask questions. I went to a concert that I would have gone to with my best friend if he was still living. I went alone, but I was not alone when I got there. I was surrounded by other fans, kind people who included me and understood, and definitely was able to re-embrace a love for music that I had shunned because I couldn't bear to hear it without him. I'm not without him now, though. I feel whole again.

I have stepped back into my life, not in the state it was in 2, 3, or 4 years ago but in a new state of confidence and joy that has been missing, really, for a long time. I own it all: the successes and the failures, every experience, every outcome. I am happier than I have been in a long time.

I guess I left blogging because I was afraid of blogging anymore. I was afraid of not succeeding, of the judgments, of people seeing my faults, of failing in some way. But I came back to write again. Because I'm not afraid anymore.

25 comments:

Lisa said...

Welcome back, you were missed!

Splint said...

I was literally just thinking about you yesterday and hoping you were well. I only know you thru your blog, but I am so happy right now to know that you are doing so well! Yahoo!

emmegebe said...

So glad to see this new post from you and SO GLAD to hear about your beautiful, optimistic outlook. Your writing and your story are really powerful and have stuck with me. You don't say what your plans are for blogging now -- allow me to ask you to please keep it up!

Jill said...

Wow! Good for you. Congrats on your happiness.

Chrissie said...

I hoped you'd come back when you were ready and felt strong enough again. I've never commented here but I've been reading for ages and missed your posting. So glad that everything is going better

Alicia said...

glad to see you back. HAve a fun life!

MB said...

Wow! Funny how we both came back to blogging on the same day. It took me a little longer but we're back. So happy to hear you have made some much emotional progress. The weight really is a symptom of emotional issues for people like us. Stay strong my friend. Look forward to hearing more from you. ;)

Karen said...

Awesome that you took these actions. Glad you are getting to root causes. So important. Welcome back and here's to healing- inside and out.

MBreitel said...

So happy that you're back and working to find peace. You've been missed!

Lyn said...

Deb~

I got your message but your email is bouncing back! Send me an email when you have time :)

LHA said...

Lyn, Congratulations on all of the progress you have made toward resolving issues in your life. What a brave thing to do! I do hope you will keep blogging if you feel it will be a positive thing in your life. I always appreciated your honesty and the diversity of ideas expressed in the comments. So glad you are feeling stronger and thanks for posting!

Lissa said...

Wishing you lots of luck, success, and peace!

Lori said...

Welcome back! So many times I have thought of you and hoped that you were doing well. I'm glad to know that you've worked through some issues and are in a better place mentally, emotionally and physically.
Lori

MargieAnne said...

Sometimes we all need to take time to learn to live and blogging must stop to do this. There were times when I found I was using blogging to hide from the real things in my life. Not that I was dishonest in my blog but there was so much pain in my real life I didn't want it all to pour out in my blog.

I too feel so much better from standing back from my blog. I am still dealing with too many things to enjoy my blog on a regular basis but it still remains a reasonable record of what I want recorded in the absence of a personal handwritten diary.

I'm so happy for you. Learning to deal with hard stuff takes COURAGE and as you have discovered it's liberating too.

all the best.

Blessings:)

JazzyMae said...

Welcome back, Lyn! So nice to see you are happy and living life!! Looking forward to many more postings of your happiness!

Rosie

Jae said...

I've been with you the whole time. So long ago, another lifetime, I was, too, a different person. A dream I had all of my life came true, and after years of undergrad, grad school, I'm now a therapist. I paid a lot *LOT* of money for the education to learn that, in my opinion, people come to therapy for one of two reasons: pain or fear, and many times both. Fear, for us who at some time in our journey had a realllly wacked relationship with Food, worth numbing out from. Pain, likewise, a powerful magnet back to Food and numbing. Since facing my own pain and fear, the power Food used to have is gone. Admitting and then working through both means I don't seek relief in a self destructive manner.

I smiled when I saw you posted. Glad you're home.

16 blessings'mom said...

Welcome back! Oh, the joy when I saw you had written again! You have lifted my spirits this morning...:)

Della

Karla said...

welcome back. So true emotions sometimes block the weight loss process... I can relate

Deepa said...

Welcome back... Am glad you are going through the healing process...I hope you find the strength to get past your struggles and fears. There is light at the end of this tunnel

Blods said...

Only just read your newest post, so pleased to see you've come back feeling much better, welcome back and well done! Take care Lyn and have a very happy Christmas with all your family xxx

Jack Sh*t, Gettin Fit said...

Welcome back. I know I'm supposed to write something snarky and hilarious, but.... JUST HUGS!

Marianne said...

Hi Lyn,
So glad for you that you're in a better place.
Warm regards,
Marianne

Taryl said...

Yay! I am so happy for you! Healing is so needful but we can't always force it on our preferred time schedule. I'm glad it finally came around for you and you are free to move forward without those burdens on you.

Shelda said...

Hi, Lyn,

I've never read your blog before today, and in fact pretty much stay far clear of dieting blogs. But I followed a link to a recipe you had posted, and got caught up in your story. I saw the links along the side of the page, of all the weight you'd lost, and then the last sad pictures where you'd gained so much back. I'm grateful for your honesty about that, and know that it's a story repeated over, and over, and over.

The statistics (though I've read some refuting points) are that about 95% of people who lose weight gain it all back, if not more pounds besides. I've read a number of books that attempt to deal with/explain this phenomenon, and there seem to be a number of theories. I remember once reading a section about why---if 95% of us fail at permanent and sustained weight loss---cwe still think it's our personal failing instead of blaming diets and questioning the whole enterprise? This struck a real chord with me, and has helped me pull myself out of negative mental/emotional places. I think that it was in _Big Fat Lies: The Truth About Your Weight and Your Health_, by Glenn A. Gaesser, though I'm not sure.

My heart hurts for you, for myself, for my mother, for my grandmother, for many of my friends, and for so so so many of us who struggle with this!

I just wanted to say thank you for your writing. Your honest sharing of your experience helps us all.

Best,
Shelda

Gigi said...

Glad you're back!