Wow! Crazy when I see it side by side! This was supposed to be posted with an inspirational quote, but I feel the need to share what I feel. I hope you don’t mind a morning rambling (or therapy session).
How you do anything is how you do everything.
I look at this picture and I have a battle of emotions inside me. There are emotions of pride that swell with the thought of the work, dedication, and emotional maturity that come with successfully reconstructing habits. At the same time, there is a lamenting pain that stems from seeing a version of myself I hardly recognize.
I wasn’t just eating poison, I wasn’t just surrounding myself with poison, I wasn’t just being intimate with poison… I was poison.
That poisonous version of me was positively impacting the world, while callously depleting and ruining the circle around him. At the same time, I was only attracted to things, circumstances, and people who would further poison my life. It was a disgusting cycle of inward and outward destruction and self-sabotage. When I see that recalled version of myself, I don’t see a stranger, but a foe. It was the lowest portrayal of myself… One I knew I was better than, but couldn’t escape the cycle… Until I did.
Never again! When I hit rock bottom (and bounced several times) I decided to change. Slow and steady… refining, improving and enhancing. Loving myself enough to get rid of bad food, bad habits, and bad people. Loving myself enough to raise the standard for my life and my behavior. Loving myself enough to call myself out on my own bullshit, and to take accountability for the numerous ways I was poison to others. Loving myself enough to change my mindset and to commit to the arduous task of permanently changing my behavior. Loving myself enough to miss someone (or something), but not want them back. Loving myself enough to let go and renew.
Part of my life fell apart, and whatever was left, I flipped over. I was dedicated to starting fresh… To build upon the greatest parts of myself, and to surround myself with people who were conducive to personal growth. Building healthier relationships… with food, with people, spiritually, mentally, and behaviorally.
The best version of me would rise out of the ashes of the nuclear blast that scorched my past. My scars would be offered as wisdom, while my blood, sweat, and tears would be the ink with which I would share my story. A story in which it is revealed that if you’re on the right path and stray… no matter how far off the path you go and no matter how lost you get… you can always work your way back and continue on your journey. It’s never too late. Anyone who tells you differently is simply wrong.
So here I am… Comfortable with myself… Knowing I have been (and can be) both a devil and an angel… Sharing with you that NO MATTER WHAT your past has been, you are here now, TODAY, with the power to change your life. Get out of your own way. This is your life and YOU are the author. Pick up the pen, turn the page, and start a new, better chapter. If you feel like you’re better than what you’ve settled for, you’re right. Make the shift today… Even if it’s a small shift. It’s scary and messy, but I promise that something great awaits ahead.
I’ll be here in New York cheering you on. Love and hugs. – Steve