I was never a Beyoncé fan… until she released Lemonade.
Lemonade spoke to my soul; suddenly Beyoncé felt like a close, personal friend of mine when she shared this part of her darkness with me (well, actually with the world, but it felt like it was written just for me, ya know?).
I have the album playing in the background as I write to you now; “Forward” is currently ringing in my ears.
My heart hurts.
I don’t know how to pick myself up, you guys… and that scares me.
I’ve been going non-stop for the past 6 months: I’ve been working 7 days a week, drowning myself in schoolwork and volunteer work, partying until the break of dawn, eating like shit and boozing it up until I’m sick and hungover, and, of course, my favorite thing—I’ve become a serial dater.
I only manage to sleep for a couple of hours each night.
I’ve become a crazy “New Ager” and I’ve started collecting self-help books and crystals like my life depends on it.
I have dream catchers hanging all over my room.
I try not to be alone too often these days because when I’m alone, I’m afraid the Darkness is going to sweep me into Its arms and I’ll never escape Its grasp.
When I’m alone in my Jeep driving to and from work, I have to be careful to keep my mind as blank as possible, otherwise I burst into tears.
I’ve always struggled—always. I’ve always had demons; this is something all of you know by now. I spent the first two decades of my life eating my way straight to 320 lbs. …Normalcy and I have never quite figured out how to co-exist, obviously.
When my best friend killed himself last October, my life changed forever. He may have finally found a way to escape his pain, but the pain he’s now inflicted upon everyone that ever loved him is unreal. My heart is so heavy I can hardly breathe some days. He’s the first thing I think about when I wake up in the morning and the last thing I think about before I go to sleep each night.
I don’t know how to “move on” from this. Do you ever really “move on”? How does this work?
My weight is absolutely out of control. I am concerned that eventually I am going to lose my job at Weight Watchers if I don’t pull it together… but every time I make an attempt, I turn right around and self-sabotage.
The Universe has handed me an entire fucking lemon tree…
And it’s time for me to make some Lemonade.
I happened to scroll through WP last night and catch sight of Brooke Birmingham’s latest blog post. Brooke, like Beyoncé, feels like a close, personal friend of mine because she shares so much of her heart and soul with me (aka, with the world…. but she’s also responded to a couple of messages of mine over the years, so sometimes she really is just writing to me).
Brooke, if you happen to read this, I want you to know that your latest blog post may have just helped me get my life back on track.
It’s time to reflect and reevaluate… and, most importantly, it’s time to be my true, authentic self once again.
When I look back on the last 2.5 years of this journey, I can hardly remember, let alone recognize, the 21-year-old girl that decided to pen that first fearfully brave post about joining Weight Watchers—the girl who was willing to tell the entire world her stories and struggles, her successes and failures, her deepest, darkest secrets and her big, beautiful, wild dreams.
When I was that girl, I hated her.
Today… this girl longs to have that girl back—even if just for a brief moment in time.
I want that girl’s tenacity and courage, that girl’s steadfast determination and you-can-do-anything attitude.
That girl had more going for her than she ever realized or gave herself credit for.
But… when I started out, I wasn’t doing this for me. I was doing this because I wanted other people to like me—to love me. I wanted men to want me. I wanted people to stop hurling insults at me, and I wanted to fit into society’s mold of all that’s pretty and beautiful.
Eventually, I ended up with the attention I wanted. Men started seeking me out, and since the tail end of 2015, I’ve been on more dates than I frankly care to remember—I’ve gotten caught up with enough assholes of the male species to last me a lifetime.
Men and women alike will talk about my “beauty” now, and I just scoff. What is beauty? Really! What does any of this mean when my heart is so unhappy? What does it matter if Joe-Shmoe thinks I’m beautiful or really pretty when I still am not satisfied or happy with myself?
It’s taken me nearly 3 years to realize this… but happiness comes from within.
I have to start over—really start over. I can’t just pretend like I can pick up from where I left off oh so long ago. Everything is screwed up right now—even more so than it was on that fateful September morning nearly 3 years ago… So there’s just no going back—only forward.
So here it goes…
My name is Rachael. Today is the first day of the rest of my life… and I’m pretty terrified.
Weigh-in is on Mondays. Finding balance is my hope. Happiness is the end goal.