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Florida...8 years later!

8 years ago, my husband and I took our son to Florida for our first-ever Disney vacation.  At the time, I was my lowest post-gastric bypass weight.  Our son was not into roller coasters, but hubby and I both were.  My problem was...despite being at my lowest...I was certain I still wouldn't be able to ride the rides.  At my heightest, I was almost 400 pounds and hadn't ridden a roller coaster since my early 20s.  In fact, I remember the first time I got on a roller coaster and was told that I had to get off because the lap bar wouldn't close.  It was the most humiliating experience of my life and I pretty much wrote roller coasters off at that time.  When we got to Florida, hubby assured me that I would be able to ride them at my weight even though I wasn't convinced.  There was a roller coaster in Florida (at Universal, I think) that had 2 separate tracks and looked really neat.  We decided to try it.  I was sure I wouldn't be able to ride it...but...thanks to the creation of "modified seats"...I was able to fit not so comfortably in row 3.  With the exception of Mission Space...that was the only ride I rode during that trip.  It was discouraging.

After years of set-backs...that 250 slowly crept up to 300 and beyond.  I did the yo yo dieting where I would bounce back and forth between 10-20 pounds in either direction of 300...but never maintained any sort of loss.

8 years later, I am 10 months into my new lifestyle and am almost 100 pounds down from my starting point in September...I have about 15 pounds to go.  Anyways, my family did the Florida trip again this year...in the middle of July.  I am about 40 pounds less than my previous Florida lowest.  The roller coaster that I rode before is there...although now it's in Harry Potter land.  The name has been changed...but the same "modified seats" are still tucked away in rows 3 and 6.  I have been on other roller coasters this year between 6 Flags and Dorney Park...but this one still haunted me.  The last time I faced it...I was kindly directed to row 3.  As we reached the front of the line...the couple in front of us was directed to row 3...which meant...I was headed to row 6.  I was prepared for it and almost dreaded hearing the little kid tell me where to go.  I sat there holding hands with my husband and squeezing it tight as I prepared for our row assignment.  He looked at us and quickly (without hesitation) directed us to row 5.  Was he serious?  That is not the right row.  Clearly he has fallen and bumped his head.  If you all can imagine my husband trying to calm me down...it was a chore for him.  Even as we went to get onto the next roller coaster...I was a tad bit scared.  The gates opened and we went in and climbed into our seats.  I was prepared to not fit and I was prepared for the harness to not close.  Neither of these things happened.  I was so excited that I teared up.  We rode the ride that 8 years before...I needed special seating for.  I rode it as a new me.  As a smaller me.  As a healthier me.  And most definitely as a happier me!

We did amusement parks most days we were there and I was never tired.  I never had problems with my feet getting sore.  I never had a problem feeling like the day should be over when in fact it wasn't even lunchtime.  And...I never had a problem with a single ride.  I rode any roller coaster I wanted to.  I rode the rides with my husband.  I rode more family friend rides with my sister and the kids.  It was such an amazing trip.  For the first time in a long time (probably the first time EVER), I did not feel embarrassed for the people who were traveling with me.  I didn't walk 10 steps behind to minimize their shame.

Although I have a long way to go yet...the whole trip really made me feel so much better about my progress and about myself.  This is a LOT of work.  I so wish it were easier to get the weight off.  If it were easier...would I be so inclined as to work hard to keep it off?  Or would I take it for granted?  I guess I'll just keep working hard so I can appreciate it more.

43 votes + -

14 comments:

jfrog123 wrote about 2 years:
Sounds like you had an awesome trip! You should be proud of all you have accomplished. Keep going!
PatriceMG wrote about 2 years:
Great NSV! That is a great motivator! IPOU!
lorihalsted wrote about 2 years:
Yeah for YOU! I am a coaster finantic and have had those fears in the past as well. I still have several more pounds to go but I am ready to ride them all!!!!
NewChristina wrote about 2 years:
What a great BLOG (yes, a weird word)!! Touching, familiar, funny, and inspirational. Thanks.
KechiaG wrote about 2 years:
Soooo happy for you!! Sounds like you had a wonderful vacation! Cheers to the new you!!! =)
mking wrote about 2 years:
awww so inspiring:)
cpegasus01 wrote about 2 years:
That is something you should share with Disney! What an awesome story.
love22step wrote about 2 years:
I'm thrilled to hear you are experiencing so many fringe benefits from being fit and healthy! Great story!
Jacole18 wrote about 2 years:
What an amazing story....what a feeling that must have been. Congrats on all your hard work and weight loss.
outwiththeoldinwiththenew wrote about 2 years:
Awesome story!!!!
loadsandloads wrote about 2 years:
great story! I am so there with you! I live in Florida and used to go to Universal all the time and ride the coasters. I haven't ridden a coaster in at least 4 years maybe more. I'm hoping to ride for my birthday in September. You are doing great. You can be very proud!!!
ramgi wrote about 2 years:
Thank you so much for sharing your story. I fought hard not to tear up. Congrats on your weight loss:-)
ScubaAmyMN wrote about 2 years:
Every time you write about the roller coaster, I am thrilled. I think it really represents how the LITTLE things can matter the most. We can scare people into losing weight by talking about big things (like diseases), but these little things really make the difference, don't they? I'm SOOO happy that you have such a tangible NSV, and hope you can tap into that feeling anytime you are feeling low. If not, we'll remind you!
kmm7309 wrote about 2 years:
I remember the humiliation of being taken off of a ride I couldn't fit. I am 50 pounds lighter now, and I know I can fit, but my stomach still does flips as I approach the coasters. I'm glad to hear that you had such a good time, and one day soon those fears won't even be in your mind anymore!

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