The Rain

September 24, 2012 in Uncategorized

It was raining

Almost the whole week

My sunroom has a glass ceiling

And I sat on my couch and watched the water beating down

It reminded me of the beginning of my journey

Last summer

I had just had surgery and I weighed 417 pounds

Every single step was full of pain

I was filled with fear and hopelessness

My brother had showed me the way

He had given me the 30 seconds to victory plan

And now it was up to me to make it happen

Me?

The person who drops the children off at school

And rushes home to a gallon of chocolate chip mint ice cream?

And 2 bags of Reeses peanut butter cups?

Spends the day making her way through every episode of some tv show on Netflix?

Then crashes after the sugar high until it is time to pick the kids up from school?

That was my life

And now I’m supposed to be the one making things happen??

When my brother got on the plane

It was up to me

He had downloaded the IMapMyWalk app on my phone

So that my walks would be recorded and mapped out

He could see if I had done it

Or if I had flaked out

How far I had gone

Or didn’t go

That felt like pressure

But it’s called “accountability” :)

So out I went

Each day a little farther

Going from my mailbox to the one next door

That brought so much pain inside my lungs I wondered if I would make it back

But I kept going

Fighting through the pain

I felt so many things during those walks

I was so self conscious at times when I would see others out walking

When 80 year old walkers would pass me by

And then there was the heckler who yelled at me to go back in the house

Because I was too fat to be outside

But the physical pain I felt every single day

In my feet and my back

Was too much to bear anymore

And I knew the only way to get out of the pain

Was to lose weight

So I had to keep going

I had to get the weight off

I knew if I kept at it

If I didn’t quit

That I would get there

I literally talked to myself

Yelled at myself not to quit if I had to

I didn’t care if I looked like that crazy lady

Crying and talking to herself every  morning while she walked

Because the pain of my life was far greater

Than the pain of what others might think

With each passing day I got stronger mentally

I could go farther

I could breathe easier

I’m really doing it“, I would think

And every day was a life or death choice

Because I was dying

This had nothing to do with fitting into a smaller pair of jeans

This was about cheating death

Death who had a set appointment already on the calendar

And it was staring me down

This was about being alive for my kids

Not leaving them behind

Pain is a great motivator

When the pain becomes so great that you can barely stand it

Because you can’t breathe without oxygen

And you have to sleep completely upright so you don’t suffocate under your own weight

When the thought of leaving your children behind

Because you chose food over them

When your feet are so swollen that you can’t even wear shoes

When you can’t take your children ANYWHERE because there are no seats left in the world

That you can fit in

When you are 1 inch away from not being able to drive the car

Because you no longer can cram your way into it even with the chair pushed all the way back

And when you look into your children’s eyes and tell them

“See you in the morning”

Knowing it might be a lie

When that pain becomes your every day reality

Then you will be ready to change

That’s where I was one year ago

So deep in the pain that my fear of dying out on the street during one of my walks

My fear of having a heart attack

Or buckling under my own weight

No longer mattered

Who cares”, I thought to myself

If they find me face down on the sidewalk dead

Well at least I died TRYING

At least I went out fighting

So I walked

And nothing would stop me

Not even the rain

hollyrain2

Because for me–mentally

One day off could mean the end

When you have my brain

All it takes is one day

And the excuses set in

The procrastination takes over

And when you’re dying

When you’re literally standing at the end of your life

And you know that there is nothing left for you but the waiting

Waiting for the heart attack to take you

When you get that desperate

That is when you’ll do whatever it takes

Rain or shine

Because walking in the rain

Is nothing compared to what will happen to you if you don’t

If you take the day off

Because one day becomes two

Two becomes three

Three becomes death

So I walked

Rain or shine

And something happened to me

Something changed inside me

Because I’m 400 pounds

And I’m sweating and I’m tired

And my chest is burning

And my legs are on fire

But I’m doing it

I’m out there

Just me and the rain

Because most people won’t go out in the rain

They don’t have to

They don’t need to

But I did

Because my life depended on it

And I thought to myself

I may weigh 400 some odd pounds

I may look ridiculous

I may be wet

And my glasses are full of so many raindrops I can barely see

But I’m doing it

I’m out here

I’m not letting anything stop me

I’m committed

I’m determined

I AM WINNING

I sent my brother this picture of me one day

Back when I first started this journey

And whenever I’m feeling discouraged

He sends it back to me

To remind me that at 400 pounds

I was a warrior!!

Once when it rained

I slipped in the mud

It takes a long time to get off the ground

When you’re 400 pounds

But I did

And while I wanted to turn around and go home

I kept soldiering on

Covered in mud

And this thought ran through my mind

I AM WINNING

I learned more from the rain

Than I did from any good weather day

The rain taught me to be fearless

The rain taught me to be committed

And the rain became my friend

Because it was in the rain that I learned how to win

It was in the mud

That I learned how to get up when I fall

And that I can choose to keep going

To ignore the hecklers

To ignore the weather

To ignore my fears

And soldier on

Sometimes it is in the rain that we learn just how far we are willing to go

To achieve victory

I’ve lost 180 pounds

And now I can wear my seatbelt

Fit in any chair

Sleep in my bed

I don’t lack for oxygen

I don’t suffocate at night

And when I tell my kids

“See you in the morning”

I mean it

So much of my pain is gone

But with it–a lot of motivation

You see–oddly enough

It gets harder the further out I am

Because I don’t have the pain

The 24 hour a day constant physical pain

Reminding me of how desperate I am to keep going

The fear of imminent death if I don’t get out there and make it happen

You become comfortable

And that is the most dangerous place to be

In the past two months I have struggled a lot

Struggled to find my motivation

To be consistent

I let one day off become two

Two become three

And suddenly I wonder

Maybe this is it

Maybe this is all I will ever be

And then it rained

It rained and rained and rained

And the next day…it rained again

I don’t go walking outside anymore

I don’t have to

I can walk on the treadmill now

A much cushier existence

Away from the elements

Away from the Texas summer heat

Or the rain that poured from the sky

Now the treadmill makes life easier

I couldn’t use it in the beginning

Because I exceeded the weight limit

By almost 200 pounds

But now I can

So I do

And in spite of how far I’ve come

I felt as if I’d lost that flame

That fire inside of me

That motivation I had in the beginning

Then it dawned on me

GO OUT IN THE RAIN

It was early

The kids were still asleep

And I was sitting on the couch drinking my coffee

Watching the rain beat down on the sunroom ceiling

And my thoughts wandered back to last summer

417 pounds walking in the rain

Falling and getting back up

Fighting this battle like my life depended on it

In that moment,  I realized that what I needed

Was some of THAT

I needed to walk that path again

Past the mailboxes

Past the neighbors houses

Past every crack in the sidewalk

And bump in the road

That I had walked last year

I needed to get back to the beginning

So I did

I went outside and I walked in the rain

And as I did

I was taken back in time

I could remember each mailbox

Each lightpole

How I had felt so out of breath

How it had been so much harder back then

And now I was breezing through it

I had come a long way

But I had forgotten my desperation

My pain

My fear

I had forgotten the look that death gave me

Taunting me

Chasing me with every step

Telling me to quit

And let it take me

But in those moments

I didn’t quit

Not even with the rain pouring down

And that was when I learned

That I have it in me to win

I did then

I do now

I just needed to remember

That the pain that used to drive me to walk in the rain

Is still out there

That death

Is still waiting

I can’t feel it now

Because I don’t need oxygen to sleep at night

I can wear my seatbelt and shoes and fit in chairs

I can go the mall and carry  my groceries in the house

Shop for clothes in a store and not the internet

And life seems pretty normal again

But if I allow myself to forget

That once upon a time

Going to the mailbox next door brought me to my knees

That not long ago at Sea World

The paramedics had to come save me

Because I almost had a heart attack

Because I couldn’t breathe

And right at the gate I was the 400 pound woman

Surrounded by paramedics and an ambulance

Trying not to die

I barely made it past the GATE

That is how far gone I was

Just walking from the parking lot to the gate

In the heat

In that body

Was more than I could bear

If I forget that

The pain

The misery

The fear

Then I am fooling myself

Because once I forget

Then I open the door once again

To go back to that life

AND I CAN NEVER GO BACK

The rain reminded me

Not just of the tears

Not just of the pain

But of the drive

The commitment

The dedication

And how it’s just as important now as it was then

Because rain doesn’t just come from the sky

Life will rain all over your life and drown you in it if you let it

It will cover your feet in mud

And flood every path you try to take

Until you just give up and let it take you under

Let it pull you down into the current

And drown you in a sea of life’s woes

It will keep you so far down in the dumps that you don’t ever want to get up again

Life will pour so much thunder and lightning and rainstorms down on you

That you’ll board up the windows and never leave the house again

That’s  when you need to remind yourself of why you’re doing this in the first place

You have to remember what brought you here

I remember

It was pain

The pain of leaving my children without a mother

The physical pain that every single second of the day brought

Trapped in the prison of that body

Crushed by my own weight

Pain brought me to the rain

And the rain taught me to perservere

The rain taught me to keep going

To not give up

Sometimes what we need is the rain

To remind us

That this journey is worth it

To not fear it

But to welcome it

And make it our own

That we can drown

Or we can swim

But it is in that moment where we decide to give up

Remain the same

Treading water but never moving forward

Or swim for it

This rain will become my playground

I’m not afraid

I’m not boarding up my windows and hiding

I’m going to stomp in the puddles

And dance in the rain

So let it fall

Because with every drop comes the stark reminder

That life is here for the taking

That the battle is yours to win or lose

When I got home

My son was awake

And when he saw me

He only said one word

“COOL”

That’s what he said!!

Because  his Mom was that crazy lady

Out walking in the rain

 

Not knowing if what poured down my face

Was sweat or rain or tears

But knowing this

I’m committed

I’m dedicated

I AM WINNING

Winning the battle

Come rain or shine

And today my son and I danced in the rain

 

We jumped in puddles

 

And laughed

And I picked him up in my arms

BECAUSE I CAN

And the reason I can do these things

Is because one day it rained

And I didn’t stay in bed

I walked anyway

And every time I faced adversity

I kept going

Today I was reminded

That we have to take each day as it comes

Rain or shine

And know that we can conquer it all

The hecklers

The mud

The rain

The burn

The pain

And when it’s all done

We can dance in the rain

Because we own our life

We no longer live in fear of it

I found my motivation

In a place I never thought to look

The rain

And now that I have found it

I’m back in the game

So throw off your raincoat

Because we don’t need a shield

We’re strong

We are warriors

We can fight the battle

And when it’s over

We’ll dance in the rain

Together

Knowing that while the battle was tough

We survived it

And in doing so

We learned how to dance in the rain

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
If you enjoyed this post, please consider leaving a comment or subscribing to the RSS feed to have future articles delivered to your feed reader.

{ 38 comments… read them below or add one }

Gi September 24, 2012 at 3:37 am

Glad to see that your out there killing it the rain hun, just make sure you don’t catch a cold though!
You are AMAZING and my complete inspiration!
xx
Gi recently posted..I believe……………My Profile

Reply

Holly from 300 Pounds Down September 24, 2012 at 4:00 am

hahaha don’t worry I….AHCHOO!!

Love you Gi!!

Reply

Staci September 24, 2012 at 4:05 am

Just because you always mentally wonder if there really is a difference, your face shot shows a way slimmer, happier, and better hair-do looking lady in the here and now than at the start. ;) I love that son, btw. I kwym about not being miserable and feeling the complete necessity for urgent change where you are now. That’s me. I’m just not to the point of death/misery/etc. yet, so I keep toying with the whole exercise/weight loss thing. If I could ever get my motivation and my mind and my body together, I’d be blasting through weight loss! Sadly, at the moment, they are all 3 on their own brain waves or something! Glad you had fun in the rain!!!
Staci recently posted..Since You AskedMy Profile

Reply

Holly from 300 Pounds Down September 24, 2012 at 12:20 pm

Thanks Staci!! You know I hate that 1st pic of me in the rain but my brother reminds me that it is my warrior pic!! LOL Interestingly enough, I can tell a huge difference also in my skin! I used to have a lot of breakouts and since I stopped eating giant halloween size bags of candy it is cleared up a lot. Gee who knew??! LOL

Reply

Staci September 24, 2012 at 4:05 am

Oops… I love that song. Your son is pretty awesome, too. Haha
Staci recently posted..Since You AskedMy Profile

Reply

Adelyn September 24, 2012 at 10:54 am

So amazing. Glad you have your fire and determination. It can be hard to see it going away…so inspired by how you have found it back!
Adelyn recently posted..The End of "Too Small, Maybe Someday" ClothesMy Profile

Reply

Holly from 300 Pounds Down September 24, 2012 at 12:18 pm

Thanks Adelyn!! This journey is full of ups and downs. Glad I’m on the upswing!! I know we can do it if we just keep going and don’t give up!

Reply

annamarie September 24, 2012 at 12:00 pm

I am beginning to believe that you are my guardian angel. You have recharged me with such hope, motivation, desire, you name it. I just love love your post and you are so 200% right.

Your son is amazing and I love the pictures of the two of you playing in the rain. Such wonderful memories you will have of just the simple things in life.

May God always shine on you.

Thank you,
annamarie recently posted..Day 208 So much l need to do, now to just DO ITMy Profile

Reply

Holly from 300 Pounds Down September 24, 2012 at 12:18 pm

Annamarie–You made my Monday!! Thank you so much! I wish all the same for you and more!!

Reply

Anele @ Success Along the Weigh September 24, 2012 at 12:04 pm

You have created something not only in yourself but in your children that reminds them that anything is possible. That hard work and determination have to be part of your journey…rain or shine.
Anele @ Success Along the Weigh recently posted..Thanksgiving dinner, outlet malls and blasts from the pastMy Profile

Reply

Holly from 300 Pounds Down September 24, 2012 at 12:17 pm

Thanks Anele! You are such an inspiration to me!

Reply

Pam September 24, 2012 at 7:35 pm

Anele, although not at the end of her journey, (but when will any of us really be at the end? NEVER!), is an inspiration to so many of us. Thanks Anele for your blog, I read it every single day and it helps me in ways I can’t even explain.
Pam recently posted..Dancing into Fall!My Profile

Reply

Amanda September 24, 2012 at 2:04 pm

There it is. Tears first thing on Monday morning. I love this post…for so many, many reasons. I have been struggling with motivation…and no, this post did not magically turn a corner for me but it convinced me that I will keep pushing on because that is what winners do. :)
Amanda recently posted..Wonder Woman Takes ItMy Profile

Reply

Holly from 300 Pounds Down September 24, 2012 at 4:19 pm

Amanda! Thank you for sharing this with me! I have been struggling with motivation too. It is such a mental game–this journey. It is more mental for me than anything else. I know we can do it!!

Reply

Lady Amanda September 24, 2012 at 3:17 pm

Love it!! Looks like CJ is having a blast in the rain. My favorite pic was the black and white one of you dancing. Loved it!

Reply

Holly from 300 Pounds Down September 24, 2012 at 4:21 pm

Thanks BFF!!!!

Reply

Saundra M September 24, 2012 at 3:28 pm

I feel like I found you for a reason. I am at the beginning of your post and have yet to walk in the rain, but I will get there. I have to lose weight or the doc says I may not make it. So today, after long consideration, and being scared of the journey ahead, (more like terrified, lol), I begin. I am going to walk now, slowly and not far, but I am going to walk. I need to lose 160 pounds. Thank you. ~Sandy~

Reply

Holly from 300 Pounds Down September 24, 2012 at 4:23 pm

Sandy, that is totally awesome that you are stepping out to do this! I know exactly how you feel. I was also not going to make it. My brother was in the same spot. I know you can do it!!!! Just start with 30 seconds if you have to. That is where I started. Let me know how you’re doing. I am cheering you on!

Reply

Linda Kuil September 24, 2012 at 4:02 pm

You’re right. When you’re faced with health issues, the decision to DO is a no-brainier. When those things are behind you, even though they are still a possibility, there’s no “imminent danger.” Getting on the scale reminds me where I could again be one day if I let things slip.

Reply

Holly from 300 Pounds Down September 24, 2012 at 4:24 pm

I need to view the scale this way!! Instead of seeing it as my enemy I should be remembering how far I have come. Oh maybe if I can adopt this philosophy it won’t end up in the trash 3 days a week!!! LOL

Reply

Nikki Mohamed September 24, 2012 at 5:55 pm

Rain is awesome….oh God! How I miss it. Another month and our rainy season will be back and I’ll be able to do my power walks without sweating to death. Keep up your great work.
Nikki Mohamed recently posted..Diet by StressMy Profile

Reply

Holly from 300 Pounds Down September 24, 2012 at 6:00 pm

Thanks Nikki!!!

Reply

Cheri September 24, 2012 at 6:53 pm

Loved this so much Holly.

First I’m so very glad you have found renewed motivation. And I LOVE the pictures of you playing in the rain with your son. Definitely a “full circle moment”.

I agree pain is a great motivator, and that is kind of tricky that getting closer to a goal removes some of the pain/motivation. Then you have to tweak it – like redefining yourself as not just escaping pain that is going to literally kill you, but as a warrior who is going to keep up the battle rain or shine, day in and day out. Period. This is who you are.

I relate to so many things you wrote – including the problem with skipping one day – then I’m sunk! What is that ?!? I like how you just own it and work with it, lol. I think I need to do that too. :-)

Most of all I think I love how you took each “negative” thing, and use it as a symbol of success – as fuel to move you forward. Like the idea of rain being something you play and dance in, rain marks the birth of your warrior, the crazy woman walking is the family hero. :-) Love, love love.

I think that is so much of it for me, every time the negative defeating thought enters my mind, needing to counter it with these kinds of messages, so that when I do get off track, I get back on as soon as possible.
Cheri recently posted..Taking Off the Gray Colored GlassesMy Profile

Reply

Holly from 300 Pounds Down September 24, 2012 at 7:27 pm

I love that you said this—>”the crazy woman is the family hero”!! LOL I love it!! I don’t know how much of a heroine I really am to the kiddos but at least they will know I tried my best!! I have to work hard at turning the negatives into the positives. Thanks so much for your feedback on that b/c it reminds me that I have to keep doing that. It is so easy to get down in the dumps and give up. We need to find ways to turn even the so called failures into life lessons to spur us on! Your insights really continue to help me so much!!

Reply

Pam September 24, 2012 at 7:32 pm

Lovely Blog! My mantra, as I walked, used to be, “I’m doing it, I’m doing it, I’m DOING IT!” Like you, it hurt so badly to take those first steps. I didn’t weight 400 lbs., but I weighed 328 and had for a very long time, 30 years, and that weight had done a lot of damage to my body, to my joints and every step further hurt my knees, my hips, my back. I hated breathing heavily, I avoided that for so long, but now, there I was, chasing that breathless feeling and hurting every step of the way. I went to the end of the driveway, then to our own mailbox a few feet further the next night. Every night was a little further, a new milepost on the road. Try to get to that intersection, or that driveway, or that utility box, or that tree. And then I was there….I made it to the end of the road. I knew it was another .6 miles back home, making my journey 1.2 miles! I made it. And you know what…..2 1/2 years later…..I’m still doing it!
Pam recently posted..Dancing into Fall!My Profile

Reply

Holly from 300 Pounds Down September 25, 2012 at 2:17 am

Pam this is so awesome!! You have been on a fantastic journey and overcome so much!!! You definitely inspire me to keep going and never give up!

Reply

Holly from 300 Pounds Down September 25, 2012 at 6:41 pm

Pam, Thanks for always sharing your heart!! I know it is helping not just me but others to hear all the things you share with us. You have come a really long way. And the fact that 2.5 years later you are still on the path is a true testimony!

Reply

Pam September 25, 2012 at 6:45 pm

I’m not saying I don’t struggle cause I do. But I keep trying.
Pam recently posted..I’m doing it…………My Profile

Reply

suzanne September 24, 2012 at 11:54 pm

You have come so far! And look at your children they are sooooo proud! It’s not an easy journey but definitely one that has to be taken.
suzanne recently posted..Shopping!My Profile

Reply

Holly from 300 Pounds Down September 25, 2012 at 2:20 am

You’re right Suzanne! Thank you!

Reply

Kelly @CurvyFitGirl September 25, 2012 at 10:55 am

All I can see is a happy woman, a happy mother, and a happy little boy thrilled to be playing with his momma in the rain. :-)
Kelly @CurvyFitGirl recently posted..Day 1,092 – Back to Reality.My Profile

Reply

Holly from 300 Pounds Down September 25, 2012 at 4:13 pm

Thanks Kelly!!

Reply

Trece Wyman September 25, 2012 at 6:27 pm

AWESOME post!! Reminds me a bit of Chris Oursler’s style. Eloquently written. Thank you.
Trece Wyman recently posted..Life, Moving at the Speed of SludgeMy Profile

Reply

Holly from 300 Pounds Down September 25, 2012 at 6:40 pm

Hi Trece! I have to admit that I don’t know who this is!! I am going to google it right now!

Reply

Lindsey September 27, 2012 at 4:07 am

I always use rain as an excuse to skip going for a walk, but you inspired me to do it anyway. It actually was barely sprinkling, but it still made me feel totally hardcore and motivated. Thanks! you’re amazing :)

Reply

Holly from 300 Pounds Down September 27, 2012 at 11:36 am

I love this Lindsey!!! I can already see you out there doing it. It’s funny how something like this can really change our mindset. It says ‘forget the obstacles!!!!” And YES you are hard core!!!! And YOU are amazing!!!

Reply

Debby H October 24, 2012 at 1:54 am

I love dancing in the rain!!
Holly, look at that close up picture of you!! You are glowing, happy, smiling! You are beautiful!!
(and I love that song!!!)

Reply

Amanda November 3, 2012 at 7:23 pm

This post is so powerful. I actually wish it would rain, just so I can see if I am women enough to go walk in it! I wanna be like Holly when I grow up!

Reply

Leave a Comment

CommentLuv badge

Previous post:

Next post: