I have no intention of going off-topic to talk about that tragedy other than to say it made me realize how much I have to be thankful for. By that statement I’m not saying that my life suddenly became problem-free, just that I see my problems in a different light.
Like my struggle with the food culture. When I took on the challenge of managing my weight six years ago, I thought it was simply about diet and exercise. I figured I’d have to develop a few new habits. I had no idea how it would disrupt my life, that I’d have to develop new habits and new ways of thinking about absolutely everything, that sometimes it would feel like I was at complete odds with everyone around me. I could never have foreseen myself agonizing over whether I should go to an office holiday party (which I did not go to by the way). I could never have pictured how stressful the thought of Christmas cookies could be. Or how bent out of shape I would be that the vision I had of life after weight loss would be so far from the reality of it.
Yet, seen from my new perspective, the upset fades away. This is about my health. It’s a worthy fight. So if someone doesn’t understand why I choose not to eat something, all it means is that they don’t understand. If someone can’t offer me support in the way I need it, all it means is that they can’t offer support in the way I need it. If someone thinks I’m too rigid or picky about my food choices, all it means is that we disagree. If sticking to the diet and exercise routine that keeps my weight in check is hard, perhaps things worth doing should be hard.
None of us gets everything we wished for. With rare exception, that is not a tragedy. It is life. It only took me fifty-five years to figure that out. Better late than never!