Recently, I was tasked to write a Dear John letter to my old self, in a nutrition course that I am currently taking. As you might know, I have a challenging and conflicted relationship with food and fitness, and this is what I feel makes me relatable to my clients. I try to be as transparent as I can be while helping them to look within themselves to see what old messages and old patterns they might be bringing on their journey with them.
So, in all transparency and in an effort to help others, my clients and my friends, I am choosing to share my Dear Lori letter with you. I hope that it stirs something within you, or propels you forward to perhaps write your own Dear ______ letter to your old self. (If you do write your own letter, send me a message or find me on FB and let me know)
This was not an easy thing to do, and I urge you to offer yourself grace and compassion if you choose to write your own letter. For some of you, it may be that you get angry, or you cry, or you are compassionate. However you feel your “old self” will hear it, that is how you must write it. For me, my old wounds come mostly from my childhood, so it was my child self that I had to be softer with. I chose to just write it, not really thinking too much about what I was writing, only how it made me feel as I was letting go of the old stuff. It really was a cathartic exercise and one I am glad I did and I am glad to share with you.
In health and fitness
Dear “old” me,
We have had a long run! Since I was probably 10 years old I have had a roller-coaster ride with you. Never feeling good enough, never feeling happy with myself, never feeling thin enough. I watched you watching your mom always feeling the same way and you learned from her. She was a great mom in so many other ways but your brain took in all those patterns and started to put them on.
It was the 70’s and no one knew about sugar, or fat, or how processed foods would ruin our health. Plus you grew up in a grocery store for goodness sake….food and junk was always readily available. And your 3:30 break from work pretty much always included a Pepsi and a chocolate bar/chips because you “deserved” it for all of your hard work. You still feel you deserve food as recognition or reward!
I am not quite sure how you managed to drag all of this around with you for so long. But needless to say you dragged it into all of your friendships and your relationships and your marriage. A lot has happened to the old you….some scars that probably will never completely go away. But you have to know that hiding from feelings and covering them up and “dealing” with them with food is NOT the way to heal yourself. You need compassion and grace, acceptance and perseverance, courage and faith, strength and mindset….all the things that you haven’t had or given yourself!!!
You deserve better! You deserve to be fit and healthy and to REALLY love yourself for who you are and not what you look like. I know you are unhappy with how you look right now, but change for the right reasons, not for some societal message or your old brain patterns telling you that you are not worthy because you are fat or unlikeable. I know you want love and connection and you want to feel significant but none of these things will be any different if you are thin!!! Change for YOU, for your health and for wanting to be a great example for yourself; to show yourself you CAN DO IT!!
Change your thought process, love that little girl inside of you and tell her that it is not her fault. She didn’t know any better, but you do. You have grown up now, and you are learning new tools to help with this part of your journey.
I am sorry that we have to end our relationship, because as you know, I do love a great long lasting connection, but ours has been unhealthy and I can’t be with you any longer. I do love parts of you, but the painful and hurtful, unhealthy parts no longer serve me.
So goodbye, farewell, and thanks for what you have taught me that …. I am worthy of soooooo much more!
My new self!