Growing up, one of my favorite animated shows was the Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh. There was just something special about Christopher Robin and his stuffed animals that came to life. The personalities of each character seemed so genuine. Of all of them the one that I related to the most was Eeyore.
There is just something about that stuffed donkey who always seemed to be looking for his lost tail. His depressing persona was always grateful whenever one of his friends recognized him. Despite his melancholy attitude, he was always willing to help anyone whenever they asked.
This weekend, my son Dakota had a soccer tournament. He is playing club soccer so tournaments are an almost weekly occurrence. This week he was playing for the U16 team whose players are a year older. In this particular tournament one of the teams he would play against was a team he played for last season.
When Dakota moved to a new team this year it was with very mixed feelings. On the one hand he welcomed being on a competitive club team and an opportunity to play with many of his friends from school. On the other hand it meant saying good-bye to teammates he played with for the past four years.
For Trina and I there were similar feelings. There is something about spending nearly every weekend with other parents sharing the experiences of our children that form a bond and we quickly became friends. Now for the first time in almost a year we would see those parents and get reacquainted.
This is also the first time they would have seen me since I started this diet program. I wondered whether the last eight weeks were noticeable. I feel different than I did before I started but seeing myself in the mirror each morning I really hadn’t noticed much of a change. I wondered if perhaps I was one of those people who could gain or lose weight and not have it be that obvious.
During the pre-game warm-ups we had an opportunity to visit with the other parents. I felt a little bit like Eeyore on steroids. Every person I saw stood there with mouth open staring at me. “Oh my word, you have lost a LOT of weight!”
This was the first time since I started this diet that anyone has actually noticed. At first I was a little uncomfortable with the reaction but after three or four people my self-esteem took a serious boost. Maybe all of this hard work was actually worth it.
People were not just surprised at the weight loss but impressed with how I looked. Of course I could have taken it to mean that before I was just slightly smaller than the Goodyear Blimp but instead I decided it just meant that I look better.
It is not just losing the weight that people noticed. On more than one occasion people commented on how much healthier I looked. That to me was the most exciting part. I do feel like my health has taken a great step forward. And like my friend Eeyore I just wanted to say, “thanks for noticing me.”