Working, fighting, clawing, grasping and holding on

So I have to give credit where credit is due.

Thanks to that push to accept this offer to write this monthly column. When I was asked, “Would you be interested in this idea of writing about your weight-loss journey?”

I had no idea the doors that it would open. I had no idea that I was about to embark on a life-changing trip. I had no idea that I was going to inspire others. I had no idea who I would find along the way.

Want to know who I found? You know the drill. Prepare yourself for real, candid encounters and honesty. I guess this is, in a way, your warning to either keep reading or go ahead and skip it.

Let’s first start with those dreadful four stinking pounds that I gained because, well, I fell off of the wagon. Those are now gone. Boom, baby. I decided I didn’t need them sticking around. Squash. Peace out. Bye, Felicia.

Now on to real life. No matter how ugly, right? Eesh, here goes.

Can we for a second talk about how crazy life is? We as moms have a lot we juggle on a daily basis, and when life flips upside down, we are required to adapt and go on. It is hard, and sometimes, we just need a second to catch our breaths and get a hold of life again.

Life doesn’t wait, though. It keeps gaining speed and more things to do. The dishes still need done. The socks still need folded. The dogs still need walked. The meals still need prepped. You still have to show up and smile, no matter the pain from your early morning exercise or the tears of life’s curveballs.

Moms, I get it. One-hundred percent of me gets it. I have found myself in an upside-down life currently, and while I have spent the last 15 weeks trying to catch that breath and continue to keep up or smile when needed, it is hard.

The 5K in the pouring rain. The early morning trainings. The not being able to go to the gym when I want to. The wanting to just quit, pack it in and pack it on. Bring on the carbs.

But you see, that is the easy thing, it really is. Working, fighting, clawing, grasping and holding on — those are the hard things but so rewarding.

So I work harder on exercise than I did yesterday. So I fight harder to not give up on me. So I fight harder at clawing my way to the top. So I fight harder at grasping life and all of the curveballs. So I hold on tighter to those who don’t let me down.

The reward was there. Not giving up paid off more than I ever knew possible. I met someone I had never met before: Me. I met me for the first time, all broken down, stripped of what I thought I was, vulnerable and real.

And you know what? I found the real me. I have never let me down. I have always been there, but I couldn’t see past the image I thought I was. I couldn’t see past who I thought everyone saw. I couldn’t see past the unattractive person I thought greeted everyone.

But there I was. And you know what? I am pretty darn cool. I am beautiful, but my soul shines now because I see what everyone was always seeing.

It isn’t easy to lead with this version of myself now, but here I am mic dropping and killing it every day.

Don’t keep hiding. Don’t keep on masking. Don’t you dare quit. And giving up isn’t an option.

Simply catch your breath, hold on if you have to and claw your way back to the top because this mountain peak is beautiful. That sunrise is striking. When you finish — and you will — that goal will be crushed, and there you’ll be all along. You will see what others have seen in you.

Now trust me, I am well aware I have a long way to go, I have many more pounds to lose, but I can do it because I have me in my corner.

I don’t tell you this as a story, something I read or a tall tale. I tell you this as real life currently living it.

Today, I am celebrating my 37th birthday, and I have more support than I knew possible. I have the world’s most amazing son, and my goals are within sight.