Changes in Latitude


My big news this week (in addition to being closer to my next weight goal) is that I’m leaving for a cruise with a friend, and with it comes a LOT of “firsts” — first time on a cruise, first time in Galveston, first time in Honduras, first time in Belize, first time traveling extensively with a friend instead of my husband. Lots and lots of firsts!

The best “first time”, though, is that it’s the first time I am not fretting about my weight and hoping to lose a hundred pounds before seeing old friends. Hey, sure, I’d love to be at my final stage and heading into maintenance, but that’s not far away and it’ll come in its own time.

Gotta get to where the boat leaves from…

When I traveled with my husband a group of friends to Mexico back in 2012, I’d lost about 60 pounds before going, but it wasn’t nearly enough, and I still needed knee replacements. I felt horrible because I knew I was holding my friends back from some of the activities they wanted to do. I just didn’t have the stamina or the ability to walk for even small distances. I fixed that the next time by getting a travel wheelchair, but it wasn’t enough. There’s just nothing, in my experience, that fully compensates for full mobility and ability.

I still am concerned that I’ll hold my traveling companion and dear friend back a bit; she’s a spitfire, fit, capable. I still have another knee replacement to go and a lot of rehab to do before I consider myself to be fit. But at least I won’t be dealing with all the crap I did when traveling previously. It was she who called for a wheelchair at an airport after a trip to Vegas years ago because she knew I was in enough pain that getting to my plane would be difficult. I hope she’s thoroughly surprised by my changes, although she’s been on this journey along with me.

I can’t wait! No more seatbelt extensions on the plane. No more wheelchairs in airports. No canes, either. No awkward stuffing myself into seats and contorting myself for hours so I don’t feel like I’m infringing on people sitting beside me. No more rushed trips to the bathroom because of IBS. No more having to limit what I pack because my clothes take up so much room. No more worrying about my knee locking while I’m in the water, either, since I have a new and improved model.

This morning, I’m at a new low weight. My passport is newly renewed. So is my driver’s license. Those indicators of the weights I’ve been, before, are slipping into a past that isn’t as apparent to others — and to myself — as it once was. It’s freeing to be at this stage; knowing that I’m capable, now, even if I’m probably 90% of the way. And in eight years, when my driver’s license expires again, I plan on still looking like this me.

As I face my 57th birthday next week (at sea!), I know without a doubt that the biggest gift I have ever given to myself was the decision to commit to regaining my health. What I’m about to do for the next week was previously unimaginable to me. I fully embrace these changes in attitude right along with changes in latitude.


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