Plan to start (Part-2)
It’s been a long time. It’s so much easier thought than said than written. My friends and colleagues have been saying to me,” Ranjan, it’s about doing it now. Why so much delay in planning etc.? Just start man. Hit the gym and start cutting the calories man. Just start it now!” I am sure you must be thinking the same. Yes, I agree with them and I agree with you. I need to start.
How do you even begin to think of defeating a beast as complex as Octobes with its multiple, slyly playing arms? Do I start biting and cutting its arms or Do I stretch my hands and reach out for its head? Do I begin with both?
I have to think clearly. I have to read into Octobes’ head. I can see that in addition to clutching me in its arms, Octobes “controls” me through FIVE primary mechanisms.
- Keeping me in a state of suspended animation between reality and a dream.
It leaves me oscillating between whether “I” is an achievable real possibility and I can do anything about it or “I” is just a dream and my reality is the chasm between myself as I am and the “they”, forever! And so, I am not sure if I want to and can do something. Bang!!
- Making me believe that 24 hours is too less a time to think about myself .
I work for close to 12-14 hours a day including travel. Add 2-3 hours in Breaks, food, toilet another 2-3 hours in household chores/ration/ maintenance and sleep for 5-6 hours. That’s it. 24 hours are up! Where is the time to think about myself?
- Making me pass the buck to my genetics
It’s about the boon gene yes. It’s about what we know medically that genetics account for a major part of the problem. I don’t want to explain the technical details. For every shot of adrenaline that pushes me to do something, Octobes seems to inject a shot of some Anti-Adrenaline and makes me project it to my gene. Always, I pull back. Even in my thoughts!!
This makes me make half-hearted, low adrenaline filled attempts whether it is introducing a salad in my breakfast and lunch, or starting a brisk walking session early in the morning. “It’ll take time”, I say to myself after a couple of days and then taken a break or a “day of rest”, eliminating the salad and the brisk walk sessions altogether!
- Fanning an anger that sends up whooshes of impulsiveness
Angry about the way I am and gulping down the embarrassments from those billows of flab and the eyes of the “they” when they run down on those protrusions (even if momentarily), I vent my anger on things that are in my control like food, sleep and yes of course, the worries of my loved ones for me.
Hmm…I now understand how Octobes has been holding “I” as a prisoner all these years. It has been playing a card game of cheat/bluff and has been making me fall for its cards and lose the challenge every bloody single time!
ERIKA NICOLE KENDALL of Black girl’s guide to weight loss mentions straight and blunt in her blog, Why I gained so much weight and How I am losing it again: It isn’t a weight loss story. It’s a mental one. I couldn’t agree with you more Erika.
So, the plan has to be: Hit the head hard and bite it’s arms strongly. I have to defeat Octobes along the way it makes me think.
So, I am putting down an iteration of sorts in straight points. I’ll detail it with time and ground action. It’s not going to be easy rather, an “Obstinate Madness”. It’s going to be a war of attitudes and an attitude of war.
I swear Octobes! You’ve brought me to a point of no return. Do whatever you can and I am doing these:
- “I” is an achievable reality.
I need to come out of this suspended animation and shout to myself each day and each second, ““I” is the real me inside. And if it has happened from “I”-to-this then this-to-“I” back needs to happen.” Nothing less. No second thought on this now.
- Me for myself.
I have to keep myself as a priority now and respect myself. I will no longer be the fuel for someone else’s vehicle to move. I have to start saying no the moment I feel I am being en-cashed. The world will not come to an end if I start loving myself. But if I don’t, my world will soon come to an end. Biting Octobes’ first arm!
- My hour on my clock.
I know Octobes, it’s 24 hours only. And the simple math that you make me believe me about every day is just about to become simpler. A minimum of 3 hours a day, dedicated solely to myself for walking through this journey. Period. Where will these hours come from? Obviously from the 12-14 hours of work!
I am setting a deadline of a maximum of 9 hours of work. Work may suffer but its high time I take up only that much that I can handle within these 9 hours and shut it down by the end of the 60th second of the 9th hour. If a sentence is half complete by that time, I’ll complete the remaining tomorrow.
- My well-wishers’ concerns into my brain. Respect.
My impulsive ruling on food has been a sort of abuse on myself and has brought me to my today, till today. Dominating and obstinacy as per my convenience have made it even worse. I remember my wife getting angry on a ras-malai that I ordered in the dead of the night and I was so angry (on myself) and helpless that I just ate all of it by myself within 15 minutes! I remember my father advising me to increase my intake of vegetables and avoid instant noodles when I was diagnosed with Diabetes recently, standing at 115 Kgs (254 Lbs). I knew he was worried and he was right.
Some bloody poison from Octobes hasn’t allowed the concerns of my loved ones reach my brain from my eyes and ears. They will, from today. I have to make this promise to myself and to them.
- Only a revolution will work. Discipline and persistence will drive an evolution.
Food and exercise. Gradual efforts will keep attracting procrastination, each day. Change in food and beginning to exercise has to be sudden, massive and persistent. I know, detaching from all that “maya” of food cravings will be a daunting task but let’s accept the fact that I don’t have the boon gene. I have to tread bare-foot on the first huge steps made of sharp-edged rocks and billions of poisoned needles. Metamorphosis from larva to butterfly was never a comfortable process!
- Enter the river from the banks. Don’t dive in the middle.
I have to be very clear in understanding what I can do and what I can’t. There will be times when this balance is fixed. I can’t defeat the genetics of it but I can stop thinking of genetics as an alibi, by Octobes. Things will appear deceitfully easy at times and that’s exactly when I need to watch my step. If I dive, then I will more likely swing the balance between I can and I can’t, towards I can’t.
- Has to be today. Forever.
Octobes, while you keep shouting that phrase, “tomorrow never dies”, “I” has whispered, “You only live in Today ”. I have heard that. Every day will be a today. Andie Mitchell wonderfully lays down in her memoir, What I miss from 135 Lbs ago: I don’t miss sealing my hopes and dreams into an envelope and mailing it to the future. Thanks, Andie, for the powerful message through these simple words.
- Biting and Beating Octobes, each day.
Every single night before I go to bed, I will look into the mirror, search the “You” inside and ask three questions to myself:
What did I do to hurt Octobes today? What did I NOT do to hurt Octobes today? And, what did I do to NOT HURT Octobes today? Doing good and right has to be made to look small in this war.
I had never thought of Obesity in this manner. “They” to “You” will the steepest and see some of the most gruesome battles of wit and will.
The charter of plan to start is laid down for me. Next is the first step…Just doing it!! Starting with Exercise and Food!
God said, “Men have forgotten Me:Vera Mary Brittain, “August 1914”
The souls that sleep shall wake again,
And blinded eyes must learn to see.”
So since redemption comes through pain
He smote the earth with chastening rod,
And brought destruction’s lurid reign.