My community begins with a five-year-old girl named Rhaylee.
Me: I love you more than silver.
Rhaylee: I love you more than bug bites.
Me: I love you more than gold.
Rhay: love you more than hearts.
Me: I love you more than diamonds.
Rhay: You gotta be kidding me!
Me: Sweet dreams baby.
Rhay: I love you Daddy.
When I began my weight loss journey, I was going through some of the most emotional challenges of my life. I was in a lot of physical pain. I was just diagnosed with diabetes, something which was a factor in taking my mom’s life after a long battle. I was over-stressed with work and church activities, taking on more than I had to. I was paying for all kinds of new medications and medical appointments. And my anxiety levels were more than my medications could deal with.
I pushed away people who were very good friends to me, workout partners, pastors and church folk who loved me, long-time friends, even family.
And I spent less time with my youngest daughter.
At one point, it was just me and God. But he does not work alone. He recruits.
Then something happened. I still had two friends who kept reaching out to me, checking on me. They were persistent. Then coworkers kept asking about me.
I finally had enough of feeling sorry for myself.
And I finally started to hope again.
Five months later I find myself relying more on friendships than ever before. The people who inspired me started to receive encouragement by my success.
A larger circle
Slowly, my community added a few new people per week.
Now I see everyone I come into contact with, and many I never see, have been my community all along.
Success does not come alone. It does not come in a vacuum. It only comes with those who share it with you.
Today, I find myself inspired by friends, some old and some new, who are reporting to me daily about their successes and failures. They are trying. And they inspire me with their effort. Many are succeeding toward their goals. And they say I inspire them.
I am even having strangers contact me for individual consults.
It does not get better than that!
It is difficult for me to accept gifts from others. I do not like to give out my birth date because I never know how to accept gifts, especially when I am seldom able to give back due to finances. But recently I have accepted gifts because I created a small problem.
My shirts did not fit. My one coat did not fit. Nothing fit. Not even my shoes. I lost too much weight. I had no money to buy new clothes.
But my brother saw my dilemma. He provided me with several, nice shirts that were just a tad small. Since I received them they now fit me. Soon they will no longer fit, but I am now small enough to shop at big box stores or even Goodwill.
This week a kind coworker gave me six coats of various thickness and style. Her husband recently lost a great deal of weight and he no longer needed them. They are the nicest coats I have ever had in my life. Though I hope they only last this one season, then I can pass them on.
Yesterday I attended a stage play matinee due to the generosity of friends.
Sometimes you have to accept the gifts given and be a gift to the community in return.