Cul de sac’s are enticing. Inviting. They beg to be the carousel for your bike.
There was one cul de sac in my childhood neighborhood that I never ventured down, though it was the most thrilling -- having a slight hill before you began the vortex into circular fun.
But on a certain day that has forever left cinders in my brain, the agreeable cul de sac was void of a certain boy bully. Or so I thought.
Daringly, I ventured down this quiescent blind alley.
Oblivious to my thighs touching my belly, I pumped the pedals of my purple banana seat bicycle. I felt free. Unkempt hair flew in the breeze as I sored down the street. I smiled at the day, relishing in this treat that only an imaginative, fat girl could enjoy.
With one dog bark, the epic movie moment shifted from its euphoric climax to a fearful dénouement.
The boy emerged with not only his dog . . . but friends.
Then it started.
Words that I thought had only been reserved for the bus ride began.
“Look at the fat girl! Ha! I didn’t know fat girls could ride bikes. Chase her, boy. Bite her legs!”
Needing enough room to turn my bike, I was forced to enter the cul de sac allowing the dog access to my plump feet shod with Keds. I could feel the pup’s hot, hungry breath on my ankles. The dog, thinking that we were playing a friendly game of chase, failed to realize that he was being used for a weapon . . . and I was the innocent target.
I never told anyone about that day. I quietly rode home, making sure to take a short cut. I never ever went down that cul de sac until I met the Engineer, then some 200+ pounds of football muscle. We would take romantic strolls through our shared neighborhood, making sure to greet every square inch of pavement so as to hold hands longer.
The cul de sac was redeemed through those moments. But I still have a slight fear of circular dead ends. What is lurking at the end?
A poignant memory.
Sandwiched between the cul de sac stories, I take you back to sixth grade. I walk down the long hallway of Pleasant View Elementary. I am alone. As if to dare me in a chicken fight, a boy named Chuck boldly walked toward me.
“Hey Fatso. You look like a pig. Even though you lost weight. You are still big.”
And I believed him. I couldn’t speak. I just stared at him.
Hadn’t I lost 35 pounds over the summer? I wore a size 6. Could I still be fat? Seriously? He must have known about the stash of cookies that I ate the previous night. When everyone was asleep I snuck into the kitchen, eating the coveted chocolate chip cookies we rationed out to my dad.
I never had the time to accept the new girl. The changed girl. Because in the first week of school, though I was thin enough to appreciate the view of my rib cage and clavicles, I obviously wasn’t thin enough. Chuck had me figured out.
I believed Chuck.
I still find myself believing Chuck. Or rather the enemy of my soul. Poor Chuck was a pawn. Just like that dog.
Up, down, up, down. Up.
I’m talking about my weight. I have had a lot of excuses. First it was mono. . . followed by a serious bike accident during the Little 500 bike race . . . then the discovery of my PCOS . . . a pregnancy . . . hit with hypothyroidism . . . three more children . . . homeschooling . . .
There will always be an excuse. Bullies in the form of excuses will come and they will go. (Tweet this)
Eventually I hit rock bottom. I became so sick of myself and my current status, rather inflation, that I gave up. I said, “Enough. I’m so sick of you fat belly. You get in my way and you suck the joy out of me. All you do is crave. Yet even when I give you what you want . . . you want more.”
I can’t ever remember of a time when my cellulose blessed me.
I’m tired of being tired. Tired of playing the game. Tired of the show. Tired of being embarrassed that I am that Granola Mom . . . yet I’m obese.
50 pounds obese. I said it.
For lack of better words, it sucks.
Before Christmas I joined Weight Watchers. I was serious. I didn’t know how in the world Weight Watchers would mesh with a whole foods diet, but I was certainly going to try and make it work.
The program certainly helped me during the holidays . . . to not eat too much. But Weight Watchers doesn’t have points allotted for raw milk . . . kombucha . . . water kefir . . . sauerkraut.
I gave up.
I tried Spark People. I didn’t have the time to enter my food . . . and indulge in all the activities on Spark People. Not to mention, wade through the advertisments.
Cheeseslave began her Kettle Ball Challenge. I jumped on board. Finally, a whole foods blog that got me . . . I was encouraged to eat my butter and exercise. Inches disappeared within two weeks. Aided with the meal plans of Perfect Weight America . . . I lost 5 pounds.
I was alert. Agile. It felt so good. Though I remained 45 pounds overweight, I felt like America’s Next Top Model.
But I jumped the gun. And I got injured. Instead of working up to a strenuous exercise routine, I began working out with Tony and P90x. There is a reason it says to consult your doctor or at least . . . pass the fitness test before you begin.
The pity party began. The secret eating flared up. Desperately I prayed for a lifeline, a way out of this pit. Something to motivate me. Even though living life to its fullest should have been enough.
I learned about the Slique Challenge. I could win a big, phat prize. Most likely, I won’t. But what if?
I don’t think that the Slique Challenge alone is going to evaporate 50 pounds of emotional baggage. That weight has to come off by hard work. Exercise.
Most of all . . . a renewing of the mind.
I don’t own a banana seat bike anymore.
No weapon formed against me shall prosper, whether it be the sting of critical words or the imaginary bite of a foolish dog. (Tweet me)
I’ve waited many weeks. To announce this type of wound to the world is rather daunting. Humiliating.
But it is also hopeful. Perhaps you have a similar story. Maybe just maybe by me letting the air out of my tires, will inflate you to hop on your bike and join me. (Tweet me)
What do you think . . . 25 pounds by June? If you would like to join me in the Slique Challenge, drop me a line . . . I’ll send you a personal email. If you have a story to share . . . please . . . be vulnerable. Let’s get over the Chuck’s in our life.