Well, this week, I was diagnosed with clinical depression. I’ve known it for a long time. Even before my mom died last year, I knew my soul was injured and the physical me just withdrew further and further into the shell of my home. I no longer see any friends, I feel my family is broken, especially with the death of my mom and I feel like a total failure as a wife and mother. It was inevitable that I was going to break down, although I tried for the longest time to hold it all together. My sister and husband had seen the signs for years, although I was in total denial. My will to live was reaching an all time low.
So, I ended up at the doctor and the diagnosis was delivered. Medication, therapy and group support have been prescribed so, it would seem, all is in hand. But, I don’t want to bang on about my depression – it consumes every fibre of my being – I really want to focus on how I am going to beat it. As you know, 15 months ago, I became sober, giving up alcohol totally, so that is a step in the right direction, although it would appear, not enough to help life my depression.
The next thing on my list is my weight. I am 30kgs overweight, which is a lot to lug around every day. I cannot deny that it affects me in every way. I hate going out socialising because I always feel like a giant (I am usually the tallest and the fattest), I definitely avoid the beach (and I live near some beautiful beaches), it goes without saying that I loathe clothes shopping and even being at work, I feel like I have nothing to contribute because how can someone as overweight as I am be taken seriously. I conveniently have a desk at work that faces the corner with my back to everyone else. It has come to suit me very well – like the proverbial ostrich that buries their head in the sand, I feel like if I can’t see them, then they can’t see (and be appalled by) me.
Of course, for the last five years, I have avidly watched the Biggest Loser and for the last five years I have been in awe at firstly, the immense bravery of the contestants showing their bodies in front of a nation, and secondly, the transformation. As I sat on my recliner with my feet up, stuffing my face with chocolate, I have wished like hell that I could find the motivation to stick to a diet and lose the weight, thereby enacting my own transformation. Of course, for five years, nothing has changed – well, except for my weight, which has increased in that time.
So, this week, I joined the online Biggest Loser club. This is not the first time I have done this – like most habitual dieters, I do a rotation of all the popular diets; weight watchers, tony ferguson, biggest loser – but there is something about the Biggest Loser that I like. I guess having a series attached to it makes it real, inspirational and with that is the notion that perhaps, just perhaps, I could achieve the same results. My first week, I have lost 1.4kgs, but I have to confess this is not through sticking to the program. It is probably more about not eating as much chocolate, although that can’t be true – we’ve just had easter for goodness sake. For whatever reason, I have lost it, and it is quite nice to see I have lost “one blob”.
Tonight hubby and I were watching the Biggest Loser and the last five contestants did the reflective hike where, during a long hike, at intervals the weight they have lost is put into a backpack. By the end of the hike, they are carrying the weight they have lost, effectively weighing what they weighed in the beginning. After the program, hubby came up with the bright idea of getting me to feel the weight that I am carrying, thereby giving me a physical representation of how my weight is affecting my energy levels, and hence my mood. Before I knew it out came the hiking back pack (now moulding after years of lack of use) and hubby was scouting the house for items that would add up to the 30kgs I had to lose. And this is the result:
Normally, I wouldn’t show myself in such a public fashion but in the spirit of attempting to emerge from the dark cloud that sits with me, I decided to be honest with myself and confront the reality.
This is what hubby scouted around the house to put into the bag – yes, an entire set of dumbell weights, numerous books and a cast iron lid!!
I can tell you, it was quite horrible to carry it. Hubby’s passing comment? “How can you possibly feel well carrying this around, my love.” How very true!