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Daddy Bear Had a Great Fall

Good Morning My Confidants


I don't usually do these on Sunday morning. In fact, I don't think I've done one yet. But I didn't post yesterday for various reasons, and I have a few things on my mind.


First of all..."diet." I hate that word by the way because of what it has come to mean. Instead of "the kinds of food that a person, animal, or community habitually eats" it has come to solely mean, it seems, a weight management program of some type, or, "a special course of food to which one restricts oneself, either to lose weight or for medical reasons."


For some of us, that secondary one has become loaded with all kinds of body dysmorphia, someone perceiving a major flaw or problem with their own body, and/or body shaming.


There are many very good reasons to go on a weight management program. I can barely get up and down the stairs and I could easily have a heart attack. I want to climb a Mexican pyramid. And there are all kinds of adverse health condtions.*


But again, for me at least, the very use of a word like "diet" comes loaded with so much anxiety and self-loathing that I won't even let myself think I could very well be killing myself. It's not unlike alcoholism. Most alcoholics know they are destroying themselves and everyone around them, but they can't stop drinking. I am addicted to food. And unlike an alcoholic who can stop drinking, food-addicts have to eat!


So, knowing the incredible power in words--I am a writer by profession after all--I have to find new ones. It's amazing how much it helps to change the word "diet" to "management." As I said, "diet" comes linked hand in hand with all kinds of shit, including shame. Management comes with the idea that I am in control. And wow, what a difference! And as I have said, I try not to use the word "lose" when it comes to a change in weight. When you "lose" something, what do you want to do? It is hardwired in your brain that you want to "find" it. The word is too powerful, even if it sounds silly. "Get rid of" on the other hand links with such things as unused apps, empty give cards, flattened pillows, dead plants, junk mail, mismatched Tupperware, and even more, getting rid of a pest, or a negative person on Facebook, an abusive spouse or "friend," Doing those things improves our lives and makes them better, even if it is hard for a minute to throw out a CD we never listen to (maybe because of an association with a song that is no longer a good association).


This also has something to do with the title of this very post, and I will get back to that!


I am now on a weight management program, and in seven weeks, I have gotten rid of 19.2 pounds! Lift up a twenty-pound bag of something and think about that! That is a twenty-pound bag I am not carrying around every single step I take anymore! Thinking that way empowers me and make me feel good!


And feeling good, I feel as if I can keep it up. When I see something tempting, I can think to myself, is it worth it? Or do you want to weigh in on Saturday morning and see some more health gain? (notice how I slipped in the positive again?)


Sometimes I am going to want that Sundae or that cheesecake, but thinking all this through and making sure I pay attention to everything I eat allows me to plan for those treats. I know I am going to have cheesecake on a certain night and so I do really well the few days before so it won't harm me (and this time I use a "negative" word in a positive way).


I won't go into the method I am using here--partially because most people who follow me already know--because it doesn't matter. We all have methods that work for them. To me, denying me anything doesn't work, because that makes me want that thing all the more. Knowing that I can have it if I want to makes it less desirable.


My friend Belinda picked me up the other day so we could make a quick stop at Dollar Tree to get a few items I needed for the organization of my office. I no sooner got in the car that she said, "You look like you weigh less" (she is in for the non-use of the word "lose"). I was startled. I had in my head that I was at a weight reduction of 12 pounds and with how far I still need to go, that didn't sound like much. But my weigh in yesterday was so thrilling and startling and triumphant that "how far I still need to go" sounded like far less.


And that gives me hope.


Another reason I need to get rid of the weight?


Well, Friday I fell down. Hard. I am still, two days later, hurting pretty badly. I had been on the floor organizing a big bottom shelf and I was trying to get up, and I was almost fully to my feet, when I fell, crashed into my bookcase with all my carefully constructed dioramas for my dolls, broke a shelf, smashed some of the stuff in my coffee shop, and most-importantly, really hurt myself.


Of course, at first, I was far more concerned with what was broken. Someone sent me this wonderful miniature porcelain kitchen jar that held a tiny wire whisk and a wooden spoon and spatula, and it was the kind of touch that make it all look so real. It was completely smashed, and the wire whisk is still missing, and the spatula was broken in half.


Now what I need to be grateful for is I don't seem to have broken anything. I am hurting a lot, today for some reason is worse than yesterday, but I can count that as a reminder to be more careful. But a big part of it all is that I know I would not have fallen--certainly not in this case--had it not been for my weight.


There are lots of things I like to do that are not as easy as they used to be. Going for walks (I love going for walks). Getting down on the floor and playing with my dogs (one of my life's joys). Climbing stairs (we only have one bathroom, and it is upstairs). Certain intimate activities.


And you won't believe how many times I re-wrote that last paragraph so that I wasn't saying things like, "I can't go for walks, it is too painful and exhausting." And I won't use words like that because WORDS HAVE POWER. Whether it is something metaphysical (which I believe with all my heart) or something purely physical, watching what words I use makes a big difference. I personally believe that we "send something out into the Universe" with what we think and say, and further believe that they attract like-things and bring them back to me. Or as I say all the time here, "What we think about, we bring about."


Certainly, a good reason not to allow myself to hate anything. Not even a person who has caused me great harm. They don't give a shit if I hate them, so who am I hurting by harboring hate in my heart? If one doesn't believe in the Law of Attraction, clinging to negativity does us no good at all. In fact, the results of being negative (which some people delude themselves by calling it "being realistic") include headache, chest pain, fatigue, upset stomach, sleep problems including insomnia, anxiety and/or depression, social withdrawal, as well as drastic changes in metabolism (i.e. overeating or under-eating!!!).**


I am choosing the route that led for so many years for me being a healthy, happy, exuberant, positive, productive man. A person people wanted to be around.


I want that again. I hate when I am reading--for instance--Facebook and I get annoyed by something--"deservedly so" or not--and then comment with my angry opinion. It starts a flame war every single time which does nothing but to cause a lot of the side effects that I have listed in this essay! Let's just say it "ain't" healthy!


Today I claim health! I embrace health! I embrace goodness and light! I embrace a thinner-Ben. I embrace that I am going to climb a Mexican pyramid while there are still pyramids, they will let you climb! I want to look out from that top at all that I have accomplished and all that beauty.


I want that in actuality, and I want that metaphorically.


Anyone want to climb a pyramid with me? It's easier with a friend!


Namaste,

BG "Gentle Ben" Thomas



* Health conditions include high blood pressure and high cholesterol which are risk factors for heart disease, type 2 diabetes (which luckily has not been my problem as of yet), breathing problems, such as asthma and sleep apnea, joint problems such as osteoarthritis, a higher risk for stroke, many types of cancer, premature death, not to even mention mental illness such as clinical depression and anxiety, low self-esteem and lower self-reported quality of life, and social stigma and bullying. ~ Center for Disease Control and Prevention; Consequences of Obesity: https://www.cdc.gov/obesity/basics/consequences.html



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21 Comments


I hope you're feeling okay after your fall.

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I am not on a "diet." I have chosen a healthy way of eating (WOE). I am getting healthier every day. You are, too. Hope you heal quickly from your fall.

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I love this so much! And thank you so much! ❤️

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Guest
Feb 25

So proud of your accomplishments Ben. Love your blog.

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Thank you so very much!


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Guest
Feb 25

Happy for you and your weight loss, Sorry about your fall, and hope you are OK. Just saw an Insta video with a woman saying what she fears now that she's over 50, and falling was high on the list. I have fallen once since retirement, and I have a once-sprained toe and a little finger that are just a little different from the others. So I consider myself lucky.

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❤️

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I want to say first I’m so sorry you are hurting and hope the aches and settle out soon. I have always been a spaz part of which is some perception and vertigo issues. I have fallen a bunch and luckily after fifth grade not broken anything but lots of close calls with aches, pains, scrapes and bruises.

But next I want to total Rah Rah YOU! 19+lb in this time and feeling like you have a managing approach is so huge! My DH lost 20lb since 1/29/24 but that’s because he got COVID and has barely eaten. We’re going to (both) continue small portions and I’m going to attempt to avoid over buying so my pantry isn’t so full…

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Thank you so much for your comments. One of the things that has really helped me is that advice I've had all my life, eating slower. I get filled up on less. I have also learned some fun tricks.


  1. I use smaller plates or bowls. It looks like I have more food than I do.

  2. If I have something like ice cream, which is a big treat, I scoop it with a melon baller instead of an ice cream scoop and use the smallest spoon I can find and eat out of the smallest bowl I can find. It all looks so pretty and so natural and again, I don't feel cheated.

  3. I don't keep anything like chips or chocolate…

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