Gaining Life

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For nearly 8 years now I’ve been writing this blog under the topic of weight loss. I’ve gained over 60 pounds in the last 18 years and I always thought that my “problems” were due to all that weight gain. Oh, the many hours I spent lamenting the condition my body was in!  I always thought that if I could just lose the weight, things would be so much better.

I was wrong. So very, very wrong.

Before I got married, I was bold and vibrant and brave and not afraid to be every single bit of myself that I was. Then I fell in love and got married and had my first baby… and started to lose myself. As the years ticked on and two more babies came into my world and Life became all about my family, I eventually lost so much of myself that I hardly recognized that bold and vibrant girl I used to be. Where was she?

The truth is this: in order to keep the peace and make those around me more comfortable, I watered down my personality and dimmed my own light so that others around me could shine. While I felt at the time that this was the right thing to do, and I was happy to let others be the center of my universe, the result was that it left me unhappy, insecure, and hollow inside. I let my insecurities overcome me. My friends noticed it, my family noticed it, I however, just ignored it and resigned myself to the fact that this was just the way life was going to be.

Except…except that once my son graduated high school last May, I felt something inside of me crack open just slightly and whisper “I want more.”

I needed something. I needed an adventure.

They say that when you are ready for the opportunity, it will find you. Apparently, I was ready.

Last week I got a call that offered an adventure and an opportunity of a lifetime. I had only a few hours to decide if I would listen to the voice that said “Oh this is too much. We don’t do things like this! This isn’t for people like us!” or if I would find a new voice. I called my Trusted Advisory Board (consisting of my two best friends) and they both were emphatic that ABSOLUTELY YES I should take on this opportunity. After telling my husband that I was going to take a leap and say yes, I made the call and committed to the scariest, most wonderful thing I’ve ever done for myself.

I’ll explain all the details in a later post, but I wanted to take this time to say that living my “okay-est” life is not okay at all! Playing it small in my own life serves no one, least of all myself (thank you Marianne Williamson for that one sentence that perfectly describes how I have been living).  What I have realized is that it’s not about losing weight, it’s about GAINING LIFE and living it fully and confidently because I am worth it. I realize that I don’t have to wait until my kids are grown before I can start living my life – I can show them right now how to live boldly and take on new challenges.

I have a lot of work to do, but for the first time in a long time, I’m excited about my life. I’m excited to say ABSOLUTELY YES to new experiences and learning opportunities. I am looking for ways that not only will bring back that bold girl that I used to be, but will also carve out the woman that I deserve to become.

You are worth it too, sweet reader. Please understand that I am as ordinary and average as the next person, but that doesn’t mean we can’t do extraordinary things and live above-average lives! If we would take the focus off our thighs for just one minute and look around at everything else that life has to offer, we might eventually find that the size of our thighs doesn’t bother us nearly as much. Our insecurities seem so real to us, but once we look them in the eye and challenge them, they will seem a little less daunting.

I want that for you. I want you to see that you are brave and full of color and light and that you have every right to be who you were meant to be. I want you to question your insecurities and challenge the status quo of your own life. Let’s work on saying ABSOLUTELY YES to the things we think we don’t deserve. Because we all deserve to be as fully ourselves as we can be, regardless of the size of our thighs.

~Jill

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13 thoughts on “Gaining Life

  1. The other Gina

    You wrote this just for me didn’t you? Just kidding, but, Man! you could have because you described me. Where’s that girl that used to be full of the dickens (as my grandma used to say)? I saw her for a while when I went up against this anti-LGBTQ+ community here (Utah) and fought for gay rights and started a GSA at the high school, but then I just kind of sunk away, again.

    But! I’ve been taking some very healthy me time and am feeling better.
    I can’t wait to hear of your new adventures!

  2. Hi Jill! Glad to see your post after a three week hiatus. It took me two weeks, but earlier this month I read almost every one of your posts from the last eight years. Boy oh boy, could I ever relate to what you’ve been going through on your journey to lose weight. I, too, have struggled for years with my weight and it was from reading your blog that I gave up the struggle. You’ve inspired me to eat healthy and stay active. At 52, I just went zip-lining for the first time in my life and what a blast! I’m not waiting “until” I lose the weight to enjoy my life … I’m just enjoying it. Good luck with your new adventure and please keep blogging! Yvette (from Ottawa, Canada)

    • WOW! Yvette, you deserve a medal for reading 8 years’ worth of posts!! 🙂 Thanks so much! That’s so great about your ziplining – fun!! Good for you for getting out there and LIVING. Keep at it!

  3. jblairlane

    Love this, Jill 🙂 We need to be present in the here and now. Waiting for “someday” means we’ll always be waiting. Blessings on your new journey!

  4. Nadia

    Beautiful, Jill! I’m trying more and more to do things that keep me happy and healthy! Kickboxing keeps me energized, in shape and feeling powerful! http://www.ufcgym.com has amazing kickboxing classes for women, and other fun cardio, dance, and training programs as well! Best of luck to you! 🙂

  5. Great post Jill! Many people think that losing weight is all about restriction, but it’s not. First off, you can lose weight without depriving yourself. Next, gaining weight is what prevents people from doing what they love.

    Knee pain, back pain, physical discomfort, insecurities….these are the things that restrict us from living to our fullest. Our bodies should never prevent us from doing things – they should never hold us back. Instead, they should propel us forward with the energy and vitality we need to accomplish our greatest goals.

    The question shouldn’t be “lose weight or gain life,” losing weight IS gaining life!

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