I am so angry with myself. Since I began this blog, I have not made the progress that I had hoped that I would, and instead I have gained even more weight. Why is this so hard to beat? Sometimes I am torn between anger with myself, and anger with God for giving me this struggle to bear.
I'm going to be 100% honest and raw here, in a way that I have never been. My experience with my weight and weight loss, and dealing with it in the public eye has been both a blessing and a curse. I still get recognized sometimes. People will come up and say, "You look so familiar, were you on TV?" At one time, I craved that recognition. As much as I wanted that kind of recognition at one time, now it's almost a bitter reminder of how far backwards I have gone. In no way do I want to sound ungrateful for my experience, for without it, I probably would be in a much worse situation that I am now. But because of living those experiences in front of a national audience, I put an incredible amount of pressure on myself to be perfect. When life got hard, I cracked under that pressure and once again turned to the food.
The reality however, is that it's in the past. My episodes came and went, and life moved on. I am not a celebrity, and I have seriously re-evaluated my desire to be one. Now, I am back where I started. True, I do not weigh as much as I did at my heaviest, but in many ways, I feel that I am in the same mindset that I was originally. And that scares me.
Ever since the Intervention episode aired, and after I made an appearance on Oprah, people have told me how "strong" I am. The truth is that I am not strong. I am incredibly weak. I am scared. And I base my self worth on what other people think of me. Fear has taken over my life once again. I am a very delicately balanced emotional being. I put on a happy face, and most people who know me would never know the pain and loneliness behind the smile and laughter. But that is my truth.
In some ways I feel that there are two distinct Josh's. There is the Josh who presents himself to the world as a fun, optimistic, kind, humorous guy, always smiling and laughing. And behind that Josh, there is another Josh who is shy and reserved, lonely and incredibly sad and pained. There are characteristics from both versions of me that are genuine, but I how I often present myself to people, and how I feel inside are many times completely opposite.
My goal is to find a middle ground. I am often either one extreme or the other. Either very happy and elated, or very down and depressed. Sadness and fear are emotions that everyone feels, and I want to allow myself to feel those emotions without them taking complete control of me.
I do want to be happy again. Genuinely happy. I want my smile to be not one of a mask, but of a true happiness from within my soul. This transformation has to be for me. I no longer crave the spotlight of a national audience. I just want to be me. I want to be healthy for me. I want the craving to be relieved.
I don't know what the future holds for me. My experience with Intervention and Oprah happened for a reason, and in no way do I want to seem ungrateful for them. If it is in God's plan for my story to help someone, then that is something that I must leave to Him to accomplish. But for now, I want to be healthy for me. I do not want to do this for anyone else. I cannot put that kind of pressure on myself again.
When I did the show, I had many masks that I had put on over many years of eating addiction and emotional trauma from being overweight. It wasn't until I went to treatment that those masks slowly began to be removed. But even with all of the emotional work that I did, I don't believe that I ever fully removed all of those masks. It's true that I came out of the closet, and removed all of the skeletons from my past, but a part of me still guards my emotions out of fear of being judged or hurt. Sadly, however, guarding those emotions is actually hurting me more that anyone else ever could.
I joined a gym last week. Since then, I have gone to work out only once. I did water aerobics for 30 minutes, and then came home and binged. Not exactly the behavior that is going to get the results I am wanting. But I feel the need to be honest, so that I can prevent that behavior from happening again.
To be honest, I find myself in a pretty depressed emotional state right now, so I thought perhaps I would just vent here. I remember saying during one of the interviews prior to my intervention that "I can't believe I let myself get to this point." I remember the hopeless and helpless feeling that consumed me back then. I truly felt like a prisoner in my own body.
Unfortunately, I find myself in that same frame of mind. Having said that however, I know now that change IS possible, for I did it once before. I just need to pick myself up once again and get back on that road to recovery. I once walked that road proudly with my head held high, but for now I will have to settle for crawling. But I would still rather crawl along that road than lie in the ditch that runs beside it.
So today I shall throw away my masks. No more hiding behind them. I'm Josh. I'm an optimistic, fun, kind, smart, and talented guy who also sometimes happens to be sad and lonely, but I do not allow those negative emotions to control me. I am a work in progress. And I am learning to love myself.
Hello world. Here I come.