The older I get, the more birthdays bring about a level of reflection on where I’ve been, where I’m going, what I want to get out of the next trip around the sun… The last couple have been a bit less status quo than most. 43 was a year of growth. Or, technically, shrinking. Kicked off the year at nearly 200lbs, unhealthy and miserable, though I didn’t actually know it at the time.
Early in my 43rd year, I was introduced to a diet change that turned into a life style change in the form of no longer eating sugar or grains. NSNG was a complete game changer. First, simply figuring out that yes, I could, in fact, give up the bread and sweets I’d loved so much. And that I could no longer be the butt of my own fat jokes because as long as I was the one making them, they didn’t sting so much. I learned the power of food in health, both mental and physical. It is more than sustenance. It is medicine. It heals. It brings joy. That I wasn’t restricting myself to a boring diet but opening up a whole new world of flavor and options I’d never considered. Bacon every day. Let me repeat that. Bacon. Every. Single. Day!!
I welcomed 44 with a new outlook on life, 55lbs later, but a little skeptical of the staying power of this change. Fifteen years of weight creeping up despite your best effort (or at least what you thought was your best effort) can make a girl doubt long term success. While I’d never second guessed the diet-turned-lifestyle change, could the results be for real and life changing as well?
So 44 was a year of maintenance. Proving to myself that I could do the thing I put my mind to. In all other aspects of life, this wasn’t so much a question. I can be stubborn to a fault when I set my sights on a project, but I’d never much considered myself the project. I’m not sure I considered myself wroth being the project. So 44 has been a pretty good year cuz it turned out I am hella worth being the project and am absolutely capable of maintaining. This is heady stuff, let me tell you.
But as I reflect on 44 as I’m about to kick it to the curb, I’m realizing that maintaining has been my status quo and I don’t think I wand status quo to be my carry over into 45. I want to progress. Obviously maintaining the weight loss and lifestyle change is a given. But its time to focus on the next step of that journey- gym time. I’ve already joined, been sidelined by injury and am working my way back, but this is something I want to truly focus on in the coming trip around the sun. Not body builder style, but in firming up the things left saggy after years of excess weight. In embracing the stuff that will never be firm because of the life lived in those years, but in accepting this, knowing everything else is working together to keep the change permanent.
I want to progress in my fiber enthusiasm. Knitting and spinning have become a significant piece of who I am. I don’t just enjoy them as hobbies, they are a part of my soul. I want to do more. Part of this is continuing to work toward my Master Spinners Certificate. The work toward completing Level 2 is underway and I plan to take the Level 3 classroom course later this year. I want to continue to grow both my knowledge and my skills in creating yarn that is uniquely mine while learning how the craft has shaped modern life.
I want to grow as a knitter. For the last dozen years or so, I have proven myself quite capable of making pretty things, but most of those things are made on the patterns others have created. While there’s nothing wrong with recreating the works of others, I want to progress to my own designs. I’m still not sure exactly what this means or how I will achieve this, but it is a goal worthy of effort on my part. I want the next 365 days to be the start of something exciting, maybe a little scary, but rewarding in knowing that I can continue to meet challenges and exceed my own expectations. To 44 I say thank you. You have shown me what is possible. You’ve helped me love myself a little more. You’ve helped me to let go of a lot of old baggage and know myself better. But its time to kick you to the curb and find out what 45 and I can do together. Lets do this.
2 thoughts on “So long, 44…”
I’m so proud of you! I’ve had so much fun watching the photos as you shrink into the new you! I’ve been doing some shrinking of my own lately—thanks for inspiring me!
Great post, and wow! Good for you! As for the gym? Once it gets in your blood, you will love it! I never thought I would step foot in one. Now I have two sons who are trainers and one works with me. Your body will transform. You dont have to worry about a body builder’s physique; we aren’t made that way by nature. Do it before your 50s though!!! That’s a weird age, lemme tell you! 🤣