One day, about four years ago, my husband made me a walking stick, because he wanted to take me to Yosemite, I was so embarrassed to NEED a walking stick but it was true I couldn’t stand more than a couple of minutes without lower back pain from all the weight my tiny bones were carrying. I went to Yosemite with him, depressed and loathing myself, because I couldn’t be outside doing the things I loved, it hurt too much to realize how miserably fat I really was and that it made things impossible for me to really enjoy. Well, I went with him anyway, with my walking stick and I saw such beautiful scenery, it was at a slow pace, but I have the best hubby in the world who always understood how hard it was for me to do and supported my efforts of trying by not nagging me on my pace. He was proud of me for even trying at this point, after I creeped up the hills, using walking stick along the way I too became proud of myself for getting out there even though it hurt! I can tell you it was the best day I have had in a long time, it was breath-taking scenery and well worth going. To think, I almost let the pain of movement, and the embarrassment of obesity keep me locked away in shame. This was my wake-up call!
A few months later, my husband and I went to a garage sale, and there it was! A big yellow kayak the guy was selling. We had never kayaked before, but I thought, well I can sit and my arms still work, maybe it’s a way to get outdoors and enjoy life more. So after dealing with a guy not willing to sell to us at first, because he was looking at the two of us that was very overweight (yes, hubby gained over 100 pounds through the years right along with me – I ate junk food, he ate junk food, the difference is he is very tall and it didn’t cause him any real problems walking, or playing outside like it did me) he didn’t believe we would use it and it was “his baby” he wanted it to go to the right home. He couldn’t envision either one of use getting into it or ever using it. Well, eventually we convinced him to sell it to us (he was moving out of the country and we had money in hand) but the way he made us feel was sad, but it is the way many fat people are treated. Gosh, if folks were nicer, maybe we would not be so self-loathing and eat less. Anyway, this was the start to our new life, I wished I could contact him to tell him we are kayak crazy.
We started kayaking, and loved it so much we bought our second kayak so we can go together. Kayaking is our new junk food! It is so much fun, we get plenty of exercise, and on the water we have yet to be bullied, or find any rude people. Sure it is a bit of a sight to see my fat body floating on the water but most just see that lady really is rowing fast (I out row most average kayakers out on the water, because I am determined to make this my oasis on the water and no one is going to watch the fat lady drag behind or worse fall in the water and not be able to get back into the kayak). Kayaking helped me get down to 266 pounds, the exercise without diet was working. I am now almost out of 3X close to 2X clothes and it feels good. Now what can I do, again, it’s so far away! Still so much to lose. However, this gave me that sliver of hope that I could one day get back to that fun-loving kid inside me.