I’ve said before that one of the catalysts for this ol’ weight loss journey of mine was an email my little sister sent to me on January 16, 2011. The contents of the email were things that had been discussed before (many many many times), though I usually got incredibly angry and defensive whenever they were brought up. This, time, however, something clicked. Maybe it was just finally acknowledging how bad things really were and being terrified and needing someone to push me enough to get the momentum to start.
|Me & Sissy, June 2012|
While I’ve kept the email all this time, I never go back and read it: it’s still painful and difficult to look back and think about where I was back then. As the big sister, it was my job to inspire, encourage, motivate, and set the example for my little sister and I failed to do that for most of our lives. I not only let her down, I let myself down, too. But, after spending all this time talking about it, I decided to dig it up and post it here, exactly two years after I first received it.
First I want to preface this by saying that mom, dad and I love you more than you could ever know. You are wonderful and we are very thankful for you! However I am sure you have guessed that is not the sole purpose of this email. Sister, I am not going to sugar coat anything – I am very concerned with your increased weight. I know, I know…nothing you haven’t heard before but I couldn’t go much longer without saying something to you. Your weight continues to scare me. A lot. I don’t want to pretend like I know what your struggle is like but it scares me to think that my big sister could be heading down a road of some very big health problems in the near future. We give dad crap all the time about his family history of heart disease and diabetes – Jill; we are a part of that same family. We aren’t excluded. We have to take care of ourselves too.
Sis, you could be taking steps as we speak to improve your health that I just don’t know about and that would be awesome to hear. And trust me, all 4 of us have a lot of weight to lose – and I think we can only be successful at that if we support each other. However I can’t will or beg you to get healthier. That has to be on you.
You may think sending an email is me being passive aggressive – but I know you hate talking about this stuff and tend to shut us out whenever the conversation comes up. I figured an email would allow you to read it in the privacy of your own home and react however you need to react (you can cry, scream, voodoo doll me, cuss me out…whatever you want without having to actually talk to me). You may not believe me, but I am not doing this to be confrontational…I hope you see this email as an act of love. You are my big sister…I look up to you, want what is best for you and want you to be around for a very long time.
Mom, dad and I want you to be healthy – and happy. Let us know what we can do to help.
I would like to think and believe that even without this email I still would have gotten the courage and determination to start on this journey, but the fact is I don’t know. I can’t say for sure where I would be today without my little sister’s courage to make me confront my scary and desperate situation.
Over Christmas she surprised me yet again, this time with a pair of Stella & Dot earrings she purchased through our mutual friend and Stella & Dot Independent Stylist Julie (who also blogs over at Wearing Mascara).
Yes, those are snake earrings. An odd choice at first glance, but like a snake I’m shedding my skin! Believe me, the Slytherin in me approves.
Love from the ashes,