As a wife of a formerly obese man, I will tell you how grateful I am that Chris made the decision to change certain habits in order to get his life back. He asked me to create a guest post, so here is my experience.
There were at least a few things that hurt me as I watched Chris slowly spiral down into depression. It was hard for me to see him not do anything to take care of himself. He was eating fatty, unhealthy foods all the time and a lot of it. He wouldn't participate in any physical activity. He wasn't really trying to move forward or in a positive direction. He had no goals. His job was mentally driving him nuts, but playing video games all night wasn't helping him find a better one. And when I say all night, he played until 1 or 2 am, only to get a few hours of sleep and start his insane cycle all over again. It was very frustrating.
Those habits also prevented him from being with the family. He had no time to play with our children or to help me with them after dinner. We really didn't spend much time as a couple except for the occasional date. I had hopes and prayers that he would decide to do something to change. I remember telling my sister-in-law once my thoughts on how taking care of your body is connected to improving your emotional and mental health as well. I was speaking in reference to Chris. I knew that if he starting working out or even just walking 30 minutes everyday, it would help him physically and in other areas as well. I'm not saying running would get him a new job. But, being physically fit and staying active would help him stay positive during times when he felt trapped and hopeless. I hoped and prayed...
And then, a miracle happened. In November 2010, Chris decided to change his life. All he did was decide to run to lose weight and get healthy. But so much more came from that decision...
Besides becoming more physically active, Chris is also very active with the community. He has been a huge help for Nixa Running Group and volunteering for races. With his blog, he has helped several people find motivation to keep working toward their goals or to start new ones.
Besides losing almost 90 pounds, he lost an addiction to video games that took up his family time. He now spends more time with the kids. He'll play with them on the floor and sing silly songs. We even ran a mile race with our son last summer after he trained in a running class. Because Chris decided to eat healthier, now the whole family eats healthier. Since I thought I would support him in running by running myself, I found a talent I never knew I had. We've found something else that we can do together. What he does impacts those around him, especially his family.
Besides getting healthier, he has also created goals for himself. I believe that's a major part of life, working towards something better to improve oneself. It gives us a sense of purpose. Chris has found more purpose in life striving to improve himself and help others.
My husband is my best friend. I have looked back at the "depressed days" (marveling at the improvements I have seen in his, my, and our family's life) and wondered if there was something I could have done to help him make this life change sooner. I knew, though, that this was a decision he needed to make on his own, for himself. If you are close to someone whom you think is in a similar situation as Chris was, please love them by inviting them to do (with you) whatever may be good for them. No matter their response, still love them. They may see their potential in the love that you give and decide to do something for the better.
I love you, Chris.