A lot of lessons learned in yearlong weight-loss journey


Well, here we are at the end of a 12-month journey.

What have I learned in these 12 months? Better yet, what have you learned about you in these 12 months?

Let me start. I have learned that not all plans work out. I have learned that nothing is what it truly seems. I have learned that if you want something bad enough, you will work hard enough at it. I have learned that if you trust your faith to hold you strong, you won’t be let down, even at your lowest. I have learned that no one fights at anything alone. I have learned to stop doubting myself and start putting myself first.

2018 started bundled up, feet freezing, eyelids frozen shut, but I hit the ground running. Well, walking, but what matters? Same difference. I was cold. That is the point.

It was there Jan. 1 that I found myself learning new things and tackling new adventures. I was determined to hit a goal and be the me I thought I saw in the mirror. But as life has a funny way of showing us, we aren’t in charge at times. Things turned.

When I looked in the mirror in early January, I saw a broken, bruised, ugly shell of a person who I used to be, so I worked on the broken and tried to mend the shattered self that lived inside me. A little glue and a couple of pieces back in place, and I started to strengthen again.

Then I tackled the bruised and washed away the hurt feelings, the sadness and the belittling and watched as my soul regained its fire. Then I was left with the shell. It was cracked, ran over and damaged, but I managed to fill in the cracks, get out from under the bus and band-aid the damage.

While I was busy doing this, I found myself — the person I was. I was there the whole time. It was alarming, you see, because I started the year trying to find who I was for others, and now, I end the year who I am for me.

I didn’t meet my goal or what I “thought” was my weight-loss goal. Heck, I gained more than I wanted at times and lost nothing for several months. I got stuck in an awful rut of self-doubt, stress, sadness and depression, but what I found far exceeded all of those things.

Don’t get upset when the scale isn’t moving in your favor. I did. I beat myself up for it, and I stressed out over it, and I got depressed over it. And you know what? None of those things still helped that scale move. Nope, sure didn’t.

As 2019 approaches, I have a better handle, a stronger outlook and a clearer piece of mind. What I learned most of all is there is no finish line in life. There is no end result, no goal. There is a way of life, a new process and change to be healthy.

It’s OK not to fit the norm or be the beauty queen. As long as you are finding a healthier version of you, that is all that matters.

So take 2019 by the horns and be a better you for you, not because I said so. I don’t live life with regrets and never have really. What I do live with are lessons.

As I prepare for the coming new year, I am blessed beyond words with an amazing son who is the very reason I breathe. I live for him, to be a healthier mom for him for years to come. I will get stronger. I will fight harder. I will continue on my path, not for a finish line, but for a way of life.

Lessons — how to change, accept, live with them.

Now, it’s your turn. What did you learn?

Heather Chase is a Seymour resident who chronicled her weight-loss and fitness journey in 2018. Send comments to [email protected].

No posts to display