Thursday, July 15, 2010

A New Dawning....Not The Post I Meant to Write

Sunrise in Flagler Beach, Florida - January, 2010

Very early this morning, I clicked to comment on Diane's post, Kid's Truth when it dawned on me that my response to her post needed to be a humbling confession of my own.  You see, I am embarrassed to admit that I saw shreds of my own attitudes within her post and I am mortified to realize that and compelled to admit it.  By nature, I am NOT a judgmental person.  I believe God created us equally in his own image and I am to follow that model by "doing unto others as I would have them do unto me" and "loving others in the same way I love myself."  For some reason, Diane's post, which was about the honesty of children in verbalizing what they "see," prompted the inner thought that judgementalism comes in many forms.  Two of which can be pride and arrogance.  

Twice, in my adult life, my weight has surpassed 200 pounds.  Both times, thank goodness, something about that number hit home and I took action.  I am very proud of the 60+ pounds I have lost, saddened by the 30 I regained and pleased that I am now less than 20 from being back at goal where I plan to remain the rest of my life.  The struggle is hard.   The struggle seems never-ending whether you are losing 15, 30, 50, 100, 150 or 200+ pounds.  Every one of us does it bite by bite and calorie by calorie.   We also do it with tons of support from each other.  I have an amazing amount of respect for all of you, but particularly those who are members of the 100+ pounds lost elite group!

My home is in Tennessee.  I love my state and am proud to live here.  I am not proud, however, of our new infamous notoriety as the 2nd fattest (tied with Alabama and just above Mississippi) state in the US.  I didn't have to read a survey to suspect this.  All I have to do is go out in public and observe.  

Where's the pride and arrogance?  It comes in the puffed-up attitude that looks defiantly at that very large person I encounter and THINKS to myself, "I managed to lose my weight. You need to JUST DO IT AND DO IT NOW! IF I CAN DO IT, YOU SHOULD BE ABLE TO DO IT TOO." Yep, you can couch it in prettier words, but it is a judgmental spirit nonetheless.  If it were all that easy, why am I having to lose 30 pounds I regained?  Why can't I "JUST KEEP IT OFF?" 

I am sorry, so very sorry.  You all have taught me that even though I never SAID anything verbally to anyone, they could see it in my eyes.  They've seen those looks plenty of times - they know arrogance when they see it.  I don't know their stories, but I now know many of yours.  And that's enough to tell me that behind their size is a person of deep feelings who knows they are large, who knows there is work to be done, who has a story to tell and is NOT motivated by any "looks" they get from me.  How I cringe and pray that my arrogant "looks" never made any one go home and cry like in the stories Diane told in her post or others I've read just like it.

Please, please make me the kind of person whose eyes always reflect, "I care, I understand, you are not your weight," when I look at a person who so desparately needs to lose weight.  And may I go away from that person not with my nose up in the air, but praying that somehow, some way they will find the courage and a community of support that will help them.  That is the person I want to be.

That is life through Sharon's eyes today.  Thank you for showing me life through yours and teaching me things I needed to learn.  Enough said.............................


  1. Well said, and I think that is the person we all want to be. I *try* to never judge people on any issue because I know I have not walked in their shoes. Faced their own personal struggles. Faced their own childhood. Faced their own lonliness or sadness. Faced their own fears. The list could go on, but you get my point that I am "getting your point" Sharon. Thanks for sharing your thoughts. Have a great day.

    Margie M. writes at:

  2. You're right. People are in all different stages of their lives. Every individual has to decide for themselves when it is time to fix certain things about themselves. Until that time, we all just have to care about them for who they are. Overweight folks are great folks too...
    Even if we have come to a resolution for ourselves, that person may not have had the epiphany as of yet.

  3. What a post. I'm weight-judgmental too, and not proud of it. I cherish those friends who loved me and accepted me through thick and thin. My niece said to me, on hearing that I'd lost 50 pounds, "I've always thought you were beautiful." That really touched me. I notice the same about people who accept and love or else avoid and prejudge our son who has Down Syndrome. Prejudging someone closes so many opportunities to get to know God's children and see their grace, humor, and intelligence.

  4. Sharon, You're one of the bravest people I know. :) Deb

  5. Hi Sharon- That is pretty funny, b/c I actually wasn't a follower of your blog, but after reading your posts, I now am! Maybe someone has a similar address as mine? I don't know. I think we follow similar blogs though, so it could have been through that. I'm not sure how you got to my blog, but it's always nice to get comments from other fellow bloggers! LOL
    BTW, I was in Gatlinburg, TN a few summers ago on vacation with my brother and sister-in-law and nephew, and I loved the area, especially the Smoky Mountains!

  6. A lot of wisdom here, Sharon.

    I am guilty of judgements based on my own misery in that I assume that others with weight problems are as miserable about their weight as I am about mine. It always surprises me when that's not the case. Sometimes I'm in the land of "if I can do it, you can do it," however, there's a lot of times when I'm not "doing it", if you know what I mean.

    It's tough. Your "person" goals are really good!

  7. I think we all get judgmental from time to time. I appreciate your honesty.

    I feel sad for overweight people when I see them because I know what that feels like and I wish they could lose weight and feel the freedom that it brings.

    Life is full of teachable moments and this was a huge one. Bravo to you!