Monday, June 24, 2019

Custodio: Memories of slain monsters


A FEW days ago, an old picture of the 352-pound me showed up on my social media account. I had posted it with a picture of my 207-pound self three years ago. Big difference.

Memories of my struggles as a morbidly obese individual (57% body fat) came rushing in, reminding me of asthma attacks, irregular monthly periods, diabetes and colon cancer. The body-as-medicine-cabinet days when I had 13 medications every single day. The countless hospital admissions, some even in the ICU. Six months of chemotherapy fortnightly.

The breathlessness and hell-on-earth experiences of teasing, bullying that I had to go through as a child and even as an adult.

Yeah. A few days ago, when that picture popped up, it all came back to me. I was reminded of the difficulties that seemed insurmountable, of life roadblocks and dead-ends. I felt a rush of feelings too, as I remembered all of them. Feelings of hopelessness, heartache and fear. There were moments of anger, regret and sadness, too. And it is amazing, realizing that I miraculously overcame them and that I continue to survive the onslaught of similar experiences now. And that realization just by seeing one picture. One old picture.

Isn't that awesome? Sometimes we forget how much we have achieved. It gets drowned out by everyday challenges that we need to surpass... We get too concerned about getting as much done, becoming worked up about the setbacks and rightfully so because we live in a cutthroat world. Sigh. It is easy to lose sight of it all - our major achievements and even our small but crucial victories. These days it can be drowned out by the demands of the modern day world. All these newfangled things, welcomed as they are, also have the tendency to make us feel quite alone and feeling isolated even if we are actually surrounded by people. Our modern daily cares have somewhat compromising situations that seem to leave us more vulnerable to negative thoughts and feelings.

So, it is wonderful to be reminded that we have stood tall, chin up and head held high many times in the past. I know we have often read that we should only look towards the future but looking back has its merits. I keep wondering why there seems to be a whole lot of unhappiness in this world. I am continuously concerned about how people feel hopeless about their personal struggles and the ways they resort to trying and solve it.

A happy thought can be a step towards the right direction. An encouraging image can make a difference. A hand held out to help and a hug to comfort is priceless. We all need to remember that there were better days in the past to prove that there can be better days ahead too!

It helps to be reminded of these, don't you think? Here's to surviving difficult challenges with memories of happy days and slaying our old “monsters.” We did it before, we will do it again!

Have a great Sunday Everyone! :)


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