I never realized how self-conscious I was about gaining weight until I started looking back over the photographs that we had taken over the past few years. I realized that I was in very few of the pictures. I wanted to say that was because I was always the one taking the pictures but the truth was I just was not comfortable having my picture taken.
Each one of those photos was a constant reminder of how I had let my life get out of control and how it was causing me to become less and less healthy. It was not until our trip to Disneyland last October that I came to the conclusion that I needed to stop the spiral of bad eating and health choices I was making or this very well could be the last family vacation I would ever take with my children.
I had already had two cancer scares and I was still being tested to see if perhaps there was yet another potential cancerous cell in my body. My blood pressure was medicated and was still nearing stroke level despite two medications. My asthma was making it more difficult to breath without the use of a breathing machine. In short, I was a mess.
Today I happened to be loading the pictures from our Disneyland trip and came across a photo of our family in front of the giant pumpkin on Main Street. As I looked at that picture I had the uneasy thought that there were actually two giant pumpkins; one we were standing in front of and me.
I sat and stared at that photo with a sense of sadness that I ever allowed myself to get into that kind of shape. While I didn’t look gigantic by any means and I could always justify my weight by looking around me and seeing others who were just as heavy or more so than I was it was still a depressing thought.
On the other hand, that photo really was the trigger for starting me on the path to finding an answer to my slow weight gain and unhealthy life choices. It led me to Take Shape for Life and the weight loss journey I am on.
In comparison, I took my family to an Arizona Diamondbacks game yesterday. At the game Trina took her camera to get a few pictures of our granddaughter Lily at the game. During the pregame she shot a picture of me standing in the grass beyond the outfield. As the picture came up on my computer screen later that evening I was shocked at the difference.
I was now seeing myself the way others now saw me. The parents at Dakota’s soccer game were right, I had lost a lot of weight. Not so much from a pounds perspective but there was clearly a physical difference compared to when I started. Perhaps now I won’t be so self-conscious and maybe I’ll be in a few more family vacation photos to remind myself of how great it felt to be healthy again and not carry around the extra weight that was really unnecessary.