One of my co-workers recently told me a story about how he found a sealed letter his 18-year-old self had written him. He said how awesome it was, and how fun it was to see if he lived up to his own expectation.
That brief conversation made me think. I wish I had written something like that to myself before I lost the weight… but instead, being years later… I thought I’d write something to the former me. A letter of encouragement. A letter of hope…
Yeah, you. I know you don’t want me to talk to you or even notice you. And, I’m not surprised your running away from this conversation, but it’s one that you need to hear.
Yes, I know you’re super smart and I’m incredibly impressed with how you are able to make it look like you have it all…
But I’m here to tell you. You’re not fooling me.
I know that your days are long and physically difficult. Everything from walking up a flight of stairs to crossing your legs is a chore, and that you work so hard to be independent and successful and to not let anyone see you sweat.
I also know you are missing out on so much because you’re letting your weight hold you back. Only I know exactly how hard it is for you to love what you see when you look in the mirror, and how hard it is not to judge yourself every day.
I even know that you skip out on so many events because you don’t know what to wear, you don’t feel comfortable, and the list goes on… You’re not living, Kelly. You deserve a chance at it all.
It does not have to be this way. One glorious day, you’re going to realize this.
You’re going to feel like the weight of the world is on your shoulders as you make the decision to choose change. As you begin your journey, you’re going to sit in a Jenny Craig office and cry because you’re EMBARRASSED that you have 91 pounds to lose. The truth is: That will be the last day that you cry about your weight. It will finally be over. Cry every tear you have in you. Let it all out, and let it go….
It won’t be easy though. There will continue to be moments of struggle even after you’ve lost the bulk of the weight. You’ll battle with yourself over a simple jar of peanut butter that’s in the cupboard. And, a box of crackers may make you think you’re going to lose your mind if you don’t eat it all in one sitting.
But this too will pass.
Along the way, you’re going to learn that food doesn’t own you. While you’re going to learn so many new lovely ways to prepare it and in the most healthy of ways… you’re going to become a little desensitized to its pull.
Except for chips and salsa… from what I can see from this side of things, that will always be your kryptonite. Your salty, tangy kryptonite… but if you’d have to pick one, that will do and it is a fierce challenge that you’ll face deliciously over and over again and learn from every time.
You’re also going to learn that there are things out there that you can do that you never EVER thought you’d be able to do. Physically, you’ll be able to leap tall buildings in comparison to your level of activity today.
You’re going to want to run at times on the treadmill (YES, I said RUN!), and you’re going to find yourself in yoga. You’re not always going to be the bendiest girl in the class, but you’re going to love it and your studio will become your spiritual temple.
I know this all sounds crazy. Trust me, only someone who’s lived through it can understand the absurdity of how this sounds. You will make this happen.
Here’s something else I can tell you: Through this journey, you’re going to realize how strong, how amazing, and how powerful you truly are. Right now, you think you know, but you really have no idea. You will surprise yourself over and over again, as you create this “best version” of who you are… take note as it happens. It’s remarkable.
You’re also going to find a way to help others do exactly what you did. You are going to recognize how precious this experience has been… and how it’s changed your life. You’re going to find a way to inspire others… and you’ll want to live the rest of your life doing this in some fashion.
Here’s another secret from the future: You are going to want to quit sometimes. On a rainy day, you’re going to think that it’s just not worth it. You’re going to want to eat things that you have no business eating. You’re going to want to skip the gym and lay on the couch with comfort food to ease the pain.
Since I’m you, I know that I won’t be able to talk you out of it. You’re incredibly stubborn and will take nights off to be spiteful and pitiful. You’re going to eat some decadent foods that you shouldn’t. You may even do that for a few days… but, here’s the cool part: you’ll bounce back.
And, eventually, you’ll find strength in knowing that you get to start over. You’ll find peace in your recovery… I promise, you will.
I don’t want to ruin all the surprises for you… but here’s a few more things you get to do:
- You’ll travel by plane without feeling like you’re pouring into the seat next to you, disturbing your neighbor.
- You’ll become obsessed with shopping, now that you can shop anywhere you want. It will become sport, and you’ll love every minute of it.
- You’ll have even more fun with your niece and nephew…. bouncing on the trampoline, playing on the beach with them, and being the aunt that you’ve always wanted to be.
- You’ll smile more.
- You’ll sweat more.
- You’ll expect more out of life, in every aspect of it. You’ll ask “how does it get any better than this” and spend hours planning the realization of your dreams. Dreams you never let yourself have before.
- You will stop being afraid of failure. You will stop being afraid that you can’t lose the weight. YOU WILL SUCCEED.
- And, whether you lose 20 lbs or lose that entire 91 lbs that you had your eyes on, you will forever be changed by this experience.
I absolutely adore you. Big or small, you’re perfect and I know you can do this. In every step along the way, I promise to believe in you. So, what are you waiting for??
xoxo – Me