A couple of days ago, Bec posted about change and the various stages associated with it. If you didn’t read it, go here and do so. I was pleased as punch to see the post, mostly because I was happy to see Bec in a better place.
So I got to thinking on my drive home from work, what can I do to help my good friend who has helped me so much on my journey? What’s the best way to be supportive? I thought it over, texted with Mer, and decided the truth, as it often is, was the best way to go.
Here it is: more years ago than I want to think about, Bec and I bonded over our shared love of sarcasm and angsty teenage love stories. I was in a different place than I am now, and it was a dark place. Bec and I have a lot in common when it comes to how we grew up and how we see our bodies, which unfortunately is a history of feeling simply not good enough. I remember sharing the story of how I don’t remember a time when I didn’t think I was an obese, disgusting girl in need of a diet. This includes grade school. Bec agreed.
Somewhere along the way, Bec decided it was change time. She started running. She started eating healthier. Everywhere there was Bec, there were these words:
I saw what she was doing and I started making some half-assed changes of my own. We fell off the wagon together. We got back on together. And even when Bec wasn’t on the wagon with me, she has been my fearless cheerleader (what can I say, sometimes I’m a grump).
Then there was a moment where I found myself standing in her kitchen flipping through a book about training for a marathon the night before a 5k. Bec made an off-handed comment about maybe trying a half marathon one day. I shrugged it off, thinking, yeah, right, that’s impossible. I am still too big and too slow and too just not to do anything more than walk a 5k. (To be fair, that day was hotter than the face of the sun before we started moving. Witness our fabulous pre-race look below.)
In spite of myself, I ended up reading that book that Bec assured me was fantastic. And she was right. I signed up for a half marathon after reading it. And then I kept going. I recently completed my third half marathon (Wine and Dine with some Chicks you know and love! They wrote about that too) and I’m already signed up for a bunch more. I’ve made some big changes, and though the bacon and cheese still win sometimes, I can say that I have finally gotten beyond half-assed into real change.
So what’s the moral of my story? I wouldn’t be here without Bec – because in spite of her protests, and her stumbles, Bec has been the single biggest catalyst for change in my life. Her positivity and inability to ever truly give up has gotten me through some of my tougher spots. She has introduced me to some great ladies who have continued to help me keep my chin up and legs moving.
I consider myself to be a fiercely independent person. I know Bec is pretty stubborn too. But I know I depend on my friends to see me through the rough spots in my life, and I want Bec to know we’re here to do the same. For all the pep talks I got, direct and indirect alike, I am more thankful than a few words on a blog can ever express.
Becci, you can do this. Maybe today isn’t your day, or next week isn’t your week, but you will get there in your own time. Finding a kindred soul was cathartic for me, and I can only hope that I can repay you in kind along the way. I know that horrible not-good-enough voice still lurks around the corner for us both, and I’m too honest to say it’s gone away completely, but sometimes, that bitch does shut up. At the very least, she’s gotten a lot quieter. I will see you in April, and if you’re a cheerleader or a runner, either way, you are an amazing friend and inspiration.
Have a friend who gave you your push out the door? Or who inspires you to keep going? Or do you just love Bec like I do and want to tell her so? Comment away!
Heather is a half marathoner, dreamer and doer. You can find her on twitter.