Prior to yesterday, my last WW weigh-in was back on October 6th of this year where my total weight loss peaked at -29.2 lbs. Since then, I knew that I had gained back a significant amount of that loss, but I was afraid/embarrassed to go to weigh-in and find out the extent of the damage.
I went anyway and there was a somewhat unpredictable “bad news, good news” outcome…
Here’s the bad news, at weigh-in I found out that in just about two months time I had gained back 18.2 lbs., that’s more than 9 lbs. a month. If I maintained that monthly average gain, within 12 months I would have added more than 108 lbs. to my 5’ 9” frame.
That was extremely disheartening to say the least.
An additional bit of bad news - it’s commonly reported that the average weight gain for the average American from Thanksgiving through New Year’s is roughly 7 lbs. I'm no math genius, but it's pretty obvious that I easily ate my way well beyond that point by more than a multiple of two.
Needless to say I felt horrible and discouraged by those revelations….BUT now the good news….
The WW staffers and meeting regulars warmly welcomed me back with unexpected understanding and incredible compassion. Even though nobody knew the exact pain of my gain, they all could relate to my unspoken failure and accepted me back just as I am.
In that short hour, I was nurtured, encouraged, supported, reinvigorated and re-inspired. I left the meeting with a sense of wholeness, optimism and renewed purpose. It was a poignant moment that I hadn’t felt in a long time.
Like it or not, the parallels with my faith walk were unavoidable and hit me in my semi-prodigious gut like a fist. We all stumble and fall a variety of ways in life – physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually – but I’m convinced that those first three areas where we all make mistakes (physically, mentally, emotionally) collectively point toward spiritual gaps and needs.
Those spiritual needs require similar shades of nurturing encouragement as the other areas of life, which is one of the reasons why I believe what I believe. Spiritually speaking, no matter how often or badly I screw up (a.k.a. sin) there’s always divine restoration, renewal and optimism available for me in addition to my tangible acceptance within my church community.
While I can’t let the excess physical pounds I’m prone to pack on define who I am, I can’t let the sin and misdeeds to which I’m prone weigh me down either.
Both need to be shed and avoided – unfortunately, I can’t be rid of either on my own.
More importantly, I need to be more accepting, more patient, more compassionate and less judgmental toward those who struggle beneath the totality of the different weights they carry in life.
Ironically, this “heavy” revelation has made me feel “lighter” than I have in weeks….