Healthy or Unhealthy – It’s Always Your Choice
By Patty L. Fletcher
June 2, 2022
“Your weight is 295 pounds.” My talking scales declared in a voice I believed could be heard round the world.
“What in all hell? Can that be right?” I moaned piteously as I stuffed them back into the cabinet underneath the bathroom sink, where I hoped they’d be destroyed in a bathroom flood.
Although, I was filled with self-disgust, I knew in my heart there was no one and nothing to blame for the current condition my body was in.
The day was August 5, 2021, and I’d just returned that very afternoon, with my new Black Lab Cross, Chief Seeing Eye® Dog Blue. How I’d managed to get through those hideous days of training was beyond me, but I’d done it and now that I had there would be no more excuses.
“Your excuses are bull shit anyhow; girl and you know it.” I chided myself as I stood on our back deck grooming Blue before we headed to bed.
“Nobody made you eat chips or ice cream instead of veggies or fruit while reading or watching TV. No one kept you from picking your cane up out of the corner behind the door and taking the walk you and Campbell took every day of the last six months of his life and when things started opening back up after COVID no one kept you from going to the Y or the Senior Center to workout. Heck, the American Council of the Blind offers Zoom exercise classes so the only person to blame for the weight you’ve gained and the damage you’ve done to your body is you. So, are you gonna whine about it or are you gonna get off your plump rump and do something about it?”
My answer was simple. As I cleaned Blue’s brushes and took us inside, I decided I was going to make drastic changes in my life. I knew, it wouldn’t happen overnight, and I knew it would be hard, but I also knew I’d done it before and I could, if I decided to do the work necessary do it again.
Over the rest of that summer and on into fall, winter, and spring, I became the healthier woman I wanted to be. Throughout challenges of moving into a new neighborhood, fighting sickness, and having surgery, I continued my quest.
I know, some of you are saying, “But you have to walk, you’ve got Blue.”
I must say, though that is true, I could have decided to only do the very minimum required for him, kept on eating like a horse, and making no healthy food or drink choices at all. I however, decided to use the need to learn my way around a new apartment complex, to teach Blue routes to and from the bus stop at our favorite store and going over to our old neighborhood to walk until all these things were appropriately accomplished instead would be the best choice.
Today, when I stepped onto the scales, I’d wished would wash away in a bathroom flood 10 months ago I heard, “Your weight is 258 pounds.”
“Hot! Damn!” I shouted with glee. “37 pounds! Holy Shit! I’ve lost 37 pounds in 10 months! I cannot believe it!”
After I’d put the scales with which I was now falling in love back onto their shelf in the closet above Blue’s crate I decided it was time to seriously test the water. With a deep breath I plunged my hands into the drawer which held all the clothing I’d not been able to get into for many years and see what treasure might await.
Slowly but surely over the past few months I’d been liberating a few pieces out of there and though I was proud of those accomplishments there was one piece of clothing I was dying to wear. “Oh, please? Let it fit.” I breathed as I pulled it out and slid it over my head.
“Wahoo!” I screamed in triumph as the soft material of one of my favorite summer tops fell around me.
I waved my arms, rolled my shoulders, and soon discovered it fit better than it ever had.
“Wahoo!” I screamed again, as I danced round the apartment with Blue bouncing in happy circles barking with glee all around me. He had no idea what we were celebrating but to Blue’s mind any reason to bounce in crazy circles was a great reason and if I were going to bounce too that was even better.
I know there are many of you saying, “Well, you don’t deal with pain.”
Here’s what I say to that. I’ve Fibromyalgia, sciatica and my knee is on its way out.
I’ve arthritis in both sides of my spine, ankles and wrists so don’t tell me I don’t know about pain.
Today, because I stood in an awkward position while working on some clay yesterday, my back and hip feel as though they’re filled with ground glass but Blue and I have already logged 2,200 steps today and it’s barely 1 in the afternoon and we’ve not left our apartment complex.
I could pound this drum for the rest of the day, but your choices are your own and only you can decide.
You can sit and talk about what you should do, or you can get off your rump and do what you know you should.
I’ve made my choice and I hope I never slide back into my old ways because despite today’s pain I feel awesome, beautiful, and damned proud too and I’m happy to be sitting here writing this post.
I’ve miles to go before I sleep. My goal is 160 pounds. I’ve no idea if I’ll make it or not and it’s going to take some time before I get to that 200-pound mark and start down the other side but by gum I’m sure gona keep trying.
If you’ve read this far, I say thanks much.
May Health and Harmony find You and Blessid may You Be.
Pathway to Freedom Broken and Healed:
Book One How a Seeing Eye Dog Retrieved My Life
In the first book of her memoir trilogy, Pathway to Freedom Broken and Healed: Book One How a Seeing Eye Dog Retrieved My Life, Patty Fletcher shares how choosing to attend The Seeing Eye guide dog school in Morristown, New Jersey, helped her to gain complete independence. But this decision would reveal glimpses into worlds she had never known existed.
Once home from The Seeing Eye, Patty soon begins to realize that all is not right in her own world.
Watch your step as you journey down the winding path with Patty and Campbell, for there are many obstacles along the way. Through triumphs and tribulations, through tears and fears, that forever guide remains at her side. King Campbell works tirelessly to keep Patty safe from harm.
About Patty L. Fletcher
Patty Fletcher is a single mother with a beautiful daughter, of whom she is enormously proud. She has a great son-in-law and six incredible grandchildren.
Patty was born one and a half months premature, and her blindness was caused by receiving too much oxygen in the incubator. She was partially sighted until 1991, when she lost her sight after complications from cataract surgery.
Patty writes with the goal of bridging the great chasm separating the disabled from the non-disabled.
To learn more and buy her work, visit: https://www.amazon.com/Patty-L.-Fletcher/e/B00Q9I7RWG