Once upon a time, there was a fancy blue shirt. This shirt lived on a hanger in a closet. Every so often, the shirt would be taken off of the hanger and worn by a man. He was a nice man and he loved this shirt. He always said the shirt was one of his favorites. Every time when the man would take it off, the shirt would get to spend some time with other clothes in the hamper and then they’d all go for a bath. After being dried off, the shirt would be put back on a hanger and go back to its home in the closet until it was taken down again. This made the shirt very happy.
As time went on, things began to change for the shirt. When the man would put the shirt on, the shirt felt stretched. The shirt noticed that it wasn’t being worn as much as it used to. The shirt wasn’t as happy as it used to be. Even though the man said it was one of his favorite shirts, he didn’t wear it as much. One day, the man was wearing the shirt and a button popped open. That hadn’t happened before. That’s when the shirt realized that its button holes were being stretched too. The man wasn’t fitting into him any more. The shirt spent all of its time now in the back of the closet in the dark. The air was stale and little light got back there where it was stuffed in among other things that were never taken out. This shirt was sad and lonely.
The shirt didn’t know it but the man missed it. The man had changed and gotten too big to wear the shirt any more and that made the man sad. To keep from being sad, the man put the shirt in the back of the closet and didn’t look at it any more because that would just remind him of how big he’d gotten. The man just got bigger and bigger and eventually forgot about the shirt because he didn’t wear it any more.
One day the shirt was happy to be taken out of the closet. It was taken off of its hanger but instead of being put on, it was thrown into a box. It stayed in the box for a long time but then it was taken out and hung in the back of a different closet in a new home. However, the shirt still wasn’t worn. It sat in the back of the closet for over a year forgotten about by the man and still lonely but not as stuffed as it used to be. Then, one day, the man’s wife pulled down the shirt and said, “This is the shirt I was talking about.” She took the shirt off of its hanger and handed it to the man! The man held the shirt up and looked at it. He said, “I loved this shirt. I don’t know if I can wear it again yet but I’ll try it on.”
The shirt couldn’t believe it. After all this time the man was holding him. The man was undoing its buttons. The man was putting it on. The shirt realized right away that things were different. It wasn’t stretched at all. It wrapped itself around the man and felt each of its buttons fit snuggly and securely in the holes. The man was looking down at it with a big smile on his face. “I can’t believe I fit into this shirt again!,” the man was saying. He had tears in his eyes. “I’m so proud of you!,” said the man’s wife while she gave him a hug and kissed him. “I know you loved that shirt.”
“I think I’m crying,” the man said. And he was. If the shirt had eyes, it would have cried too. The man wore the shirt to work that day and both the man and the shirt were very happy to be together again.
This is a true story though I’ve obviously changed things around a bit. Shirts don’t actually have feelings but I do. Today, I was able to wear one of my old favorite shirts. I had forgotten about this shirt because it was in the back of my closet and I never go back that far because it’s my wife’s part. She saw the shirt and even asked me about it a few weeks ago. I thought she was referring to another shirt that I really did rip a button-hole on and destroyed. Now that I’ve lost 47 pounds and a lot of inches off of my belly (I really should have measured my girth at the beginning of the weight loss journey but I didn’t think about it then), I’m able to pull things out of my closet and wear them again. My son didn’t even remember this shirt and thought I had bought something new. I explained to him that this was an old shirt I hadn’t worn in a few years and that it fit me again. For the second time that morning, I was having to choke back some tears as I felt the joy of losing my weight wash over me. Now, as I write this little story, I’m having to do it for a third time. I’m so happy now to see the positive results of my hard work. The exercise, the change in eating, the change in my mental attitudes, the meditation and my new lifestyle have all been worth it. I’ve fought long and hard and it’s nice to see that I’m winning. It’s great to know that instead of suffering from obesity I’m well on my way to carving out my own happily ever after.