I was standing in line waiting to be seated at a restaurant today when I sensed someone was looking at me. I tried to look without really turning around to look. Then I heard my name whispered in a low tone but with question in the voice. It sent chills up and down my spine because I recognized the voice immediately. I hadn't seen this guy since we were teenagers, over thirty years ago. Now with reason, I turned 180 degrees, I came face to face with an old boyfriend. We were not "real" boyfriend and girlfriend. We were pass the note, check the box will you go out with me Yes or No boyfriend and girlfriend. We were however really good friends. My family knew his family- friends.
As luck would have it, he was dining alone too. Well not for long. The next 2 hours were spent with us catching up and bringing each other up to speed on the last 30+ years of our lives. We laughed about the stupid stuffed we did as kids and held a silent moment as we both had lost our mothers. It was fun to say the least. Well he is more in touch with the people we grew up with than I am. In the middle of it all he said, "you haven't let yourself go". I asked what he meant by that and he said "every time I've run into women from my past, they have gotten fat and sloppy, or just look a hot mess, you are still as pretty as ever". So not to ruin the moment, I just smiled and politely said "thank you".
As amazing as my afternoon was, my drive back to work left me with an empty pit in my stomach. I had police sirens blaring in my head. I couldn't grasp that part of the conversation. You see its crazy that I am that woman that "let myself go". I am the butt of the fat jokes that were made. I also could not get passed the fact that he said I was "pretty". Oh please don't tell me that I have low self esteem or some crazy crap like that. I am very secure in who I am but I can tell you that I couldn't tell you the last time I was associated with that word.
Once again I was knocked on my ass by Mr. Reality stick. This validated what I have been saying all along. This journey is majority mental and very little physical. Why is it so hard to accept compliments as they are given? There weren't any malicious intentions in the conversation. The compliments were genuine and from the heart. Looking and feeling good and physically fit is really just a side effect of the get healthy journey. That is your body's way of thanking you for taking care of it. As I pumped my ass through Spin Class, I also reminded myself how hard I've worked to get where I am. Accepting the compliments as a pat on the back and as motivation to keep going was something I struggled with all afternoon. Shucks, the name of my blog is werknprogress so I know I am not done yet.