Fat? How does a heroin addict need to lose weight? Isn’t it the opposite? One would think! Descending into the landfill I remember thinking, “eh at least I will be super thin!” Joke was on me. When a person goes from being extremely active to dormant, the body reacts unkindly. Like countless others I am my harshest critic. Perhaps the mental fog prevented me from seeing the severity of just how LARGE and unhealthy I truly had become.
I had reached a point in my life where the scale read a number I never believed would be connected with me. Honestly, I held my jeans up and thought to myself, “this should be a crime.” I ate junk while using and while I slept my life away on suboxone, I ate some more. Please note I hate suboxone. It is nothing more than a substitution for escaping reality. Once I quit abruptly it was a whole week before the inevitable relapse happened. To each its own. Back to those abnormally large jeans, I looked in horror. I did not cry, I knew what needed to be done. There was NO time for tears.
I called my favorite man in the world and said, “What is that guy’s name you keep telling me about?” My father had been telling me about a local St. Louisan whom he would listen to on the radio. He really seemed to like him because he had helped a local catholic priest lose weight. At this point the man could have helped the devil himself. If the guy could help was all that mattered. I had crossed the threshold of fat to a whole other world.
My appointment was set. This man has a very Italian name. I was not expecting what came walking out of the office door. My stereotype of a fat, Italian doctor was stomped on. This guy is not a doctor. I was skeptical and desperate. I was immediately weighed and then questioned. This guy really had me puzzled. First question, “Why do you want to lose weight?” I remember looking at him and thinking is he serious? I know he isn’t blind. The entire process felt like an awkward interview for a job you don’t want, but need. Luckily, I got the job! I was to report several days later with additional instructions and a check.
The state of being desperate is a powerful thing. It can destroy you or move you to victory. Finally, triumph was in the horizon. That Italian from South City is one of the kindest souls I have had the honor of meeting. When I reported to duty for my instructions I was a nervous wreck. I was rejoining life in all aspects. I was coming out of hibernation. I burst into tears in his office and then started laughing. He immediately said, “Whats going on? Am I dealing with a crazy person here? You just started crying now your laughing?” I laughed more. This might work! I appreciated his blunt question. Truthfully, I felt bat shit crazy at that moment and like a five year old at the same time. I apologized and quickly told him; “Look, I essentially checked out of life for some time. Just recently I have decided to rejoin and now I’m a bit overwhelmed.” The magic plan was given to me and I left. I followed through and some of the anger slowly began to ooze from my pores.
Years later here I am. My weight is exactly where my doctor wants it. Six pounds less. Bragging rights! Personally, I think my doctor likes people a little larger than we should be. I forgot how much I love physical activity. Running was my drug long ago. Science does not lie when they say exercise is a natural anti-depressant. I’m far from a health fanatic, but I always notice the difference when I put garbage in my body vs. clean food. When I haven’t worked out or been very active I notice a shift in my mood. So it is simple to keep the anger away and the mind right, do what needs to be done; MOVE, eat right and never stop eating cake.