Monday, November 7, 2011


So it turns out I was the ocean.

I remember distinctly, a few years ago, sitting with a few friends who were having coffee at my place. One of my friends mentioned how she just couldn't lose that last 4 pounds. Yes. You read that right. She needed to lose FOUR pounds, and was discouraged about it.
At that time, as much as I loved my friend, I felt that she was being irrational. Who cares about four lbs ?
I remember telling her something to the effect of "What I wouldn't give to have only four lbs to lose. What I wouldn't give to have your body. I wouldn't be complaining; I would be happy with it."

Now I have since learned that not being happy with your weight has less to do with numbers as with frame of mind. That what you feel about yourself is legitimate, and every person has the right, whether rational or irrational to another person, to feel how they do about their body. That someone who is 5 lbs overweight can be as unhappy as someone who is 100 lbs overweight. It's definitely a very personal, and very much subjective thing.

What I wanted to mention here though, is what I told my friend that night. And how much that stuck with me, because I had felt it a million times, and this was the most concrete way I knew how to put it.
I wanted to tell her in a way that she would understand what I was feeling.

And so I said this.
"I feel as though you are standing in front of a puddle. And I am standing in front of an ocean.
And we both have to get across."
Do you get this ? Do you understand the difference ? For you, you have this teeny-tiny hurdle in your life. And if I only could stand in front of a puddle.  But I am standing in front of an ocean. And as I look out over this huge thing I have to do, it terrifies me. And THAT is what makes this so difficult for me. I feel like when I see how vast, how huge, and how great, this thing in my life is, then I feel like I could never accomplish it. It's just too big.

So, I lived with that for a while. I saw the ocean in front of me and I nearly gave up trying to get across.
It was just too big.

And what it took for me was a mindset change.
I didn't need to get across the ocean; I just needed to step into it once. Maybe with just a toe. And then maybe I'd just get wet up to my knees. And maybe a little bit, each day, I'd go in a little deeper, until it didn't look so big and so scary anymore.Maybe along the way, I'd procure a canoe, or a kayak.

I thought the ocean was this external thing; this force holding me back.
And the truth is, I was the ocean. 
I just needed to trust myself; to believe I could do this. I needed to just step out and do it. And every day, I'd conquer a puddle. I felt so good about that puddle, that I'd do it again.
Before I knew it, I'd dog-gone conquered the ocean.

Don't look at the big picture. Just see today.  And then tomorrow... deal with tomorrow.

 " If you want to do something, all you have to do is do it. " ~ Ben Davis, runner and ordinary person.