Personal Archaeology

Right now, take your hand and put it on the outside of the back of your bent knee.  Do you feel that ligament?  For years, I completely forgot that was there.  Ankles, wrists, hips, knees, clavicles and ribs all get lost underneath the fat. As I lost weight, I could see it, others comment on it, and I felt it; but, there was something particularly exciting when I began to excavate my own skeleton.

dancing skeletonMy friend Cindy recently reminded me how exciting that was.  In just a couple of years, I’d forgotten. The last time I saw her, she was especially excited about being able to see her ankle bones and the beginnings of her knee joints.  And I am so excited for her!  She is quite literally rediscovering herself! And whether that is an internal or an external discovery, there is a lot of work involved.  She’s doing it and she’s reaping the rewards.

For me, I was ridiculously thrilled to discover wrist bones.  I have a medium bone structure and will never be thin and willowy; however, once the fat was gone from around my wrists, I felt just like Twiggy, honey!  For my friend Carl (who lost 100 pounds many years ago), he was most excited to find his hip bones. The specifics are different for each of us, but the basic idea is the same.  We are digging ourselves out of unhealthy habits and ruts.  It’s exciting!

Now, the flip side is that it can also be a little painful.

Without the padding to protect them, my elbows bruised quite a bit from me knocking them into things. Hard chairs are literally a pain in the butt.  My knees had to realign themselves once the layers of fat tissue weren’t there anymore pushing things into unnatural places. My center of gravity and buoyancy also changed. However, I found stretching and basic yoga very helpful in lining everything back up.  I also did (and am doing) a lot of work strengthening my core.

My abs are the muscles that hold me up. They determine my posture by keeping my swayback in check. That also keeps my hips properly in their sockets, my legs straight, reducing unnecessary torque on my knees.  Them Bones is right, the hip bone’s connected to the thigh bone. The thigh bone’s connected to the shin bone. The shin bone’s connected to the foot bones.  When they are all lined up properly, they all perform more efficiently and less painfully. Lined up as they should be, they don’t wear on each other as unnecessarily and unnaturally, either.

The whole weight loss process for me was an exercise in personal archaeology on many levels.  I dug my mind out of the mire of poisonous recordings. I dug my eating habits out of the greasy rut they were in. I dug my lazy self off the couch (that one nearly took a steam shovel). And I dug my bones out of the fat prison they’d been in for years.

I have the hat for it and, by golly, I think I may have become my own Indiana Jones!


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