I have shared the story of how I was able to turn a 240 pound lost soul, into a 175 pound optimistic, positive believer but I have not; until now been able to really share the journey that took me to be that 240 pound lost soul.
My need to want acceptance, a steady life, and a family of my own has made me stay in situations; both friendships and partnerships that have not been the healthiest to my soul. Instead of getting to know me I associated the love of a man and a plethora of people as happiness.
Eleven years ago, I had a promising career as a model and I was with someone I thought I would spend the rest of my life with. After leaving home at 16, this was the most stability I had since venturing on my own, and there was nothing I would not do in order to sustain it. A few years would pass and eventually he and I would split on horrible terms. To date, I wish the end was not as it played out, though that would shape me for the next few years.
One by one a series of great men who were also in pursuit of their own growth would cross my path however I could never maintain a relationship. I found myself conforming to be the perfect woman to and for each of them; though it would always lead to a dead-end. Eventually the insecurities would set in- what was wrong with me? Was I not smart enough, pretty enough, or skinny enough? Was I being judged because of past mistakes? In my head I was constantly in battle with myself all while trying to clamor for my own success- I refused to be a statistic or what everyone deemed as my outcome.
Fast forward, August 2007 I broke up with one of the greatest people to enter my life, and lost my job all in the same week. The black cloud was cast, I became introverted, and reclusive which consequently became depression. On top of the world, running the hottest restaurant in Harlem, dating the man of my dreams and physically appealing. To hiding my car from repossession, single, packing on the pounds and pushing the friends I did have away.
My depression would last for four years before I was able to identify it, and look myself in the mirror. I had gained 80 pounds in a little less than four years, sabotaged relationships with friends/family and somehow tricked myself into believing that I was taking time to get to know myself. But who knew, I had settled into my new position, had a successful running event and besides the extra pounds I hid it all behind a smile. Those close to me could not even pinpoint what was really going on.
The day I looked myself in the mirror for real, was the day I decided to release all the hardship brought on by being the product of teenage parents. Cast away all the struggle of fighting my way through life so not to become what so many thought I would. Forgive all who betrayed my love and devotion and love all the enemies made because they did not see past this young child trying to raise and come into her own. I wanted to live again and the only way to do that was to fix myself from the inside out.
Lots of therapy, days of dragging myself out of bed when all I wanted to do was hide in a dark room and eat, and support from people who I thought were against me, is what has delivered me to present day. As you can imagine the story is so much deeper than the words written but I hope the message is as profound.
Things happen in everyone’s life, some more tragic than others. We battle abuse, addiction, loss, failure, shame, and regret. Through it all fighting the one person that has the ability to pull you though it all-YOU! We must remember that no matter how great the impact; if you want change in your life, it has to start with you first. No trainer, doctor, or individual can make the choice for you to be happy, only you can make the decision to be who you want to be.