Up The Down StairMaster
These are the kind of results featured on daytime talk shows. A miracle transformation. From fat to skinny. Well, leaner anyway—Finally he woke up and took control of his life. Now he can show off all his hard work and dedication.
Only I didn't do any hard work.
My story is something like those miracle transformations. I did wake up one day—after being left by my fiancé, my life fallen apart. A psychic change helped reorient my life. I took control by letting go of control. Certain truths about the human condition finally gave me the life I always desired. The kind that was always out of reach.
To a libra, high on the ladder of aspirations are things like love, beauty, health, harmony. All of these had fled my life like a frightened dog in a thunderstorm, no matter how I coaxed and prodded or forced. My long descent into ill-health did not appear to be that. From my youngest years I believed suffering a sign of progress—An aching body was a badge of strenuous effort and accomplishment. Suddenly at 34 that ache was unceasing, and arrived with as little effort as getting out of bed.
Depression had been my life companion from the age of 12. Once a promising competitive swimmer, I felt the power of my youth sucked from my body overnight. The rest of my junior and senior year of high school was merely a quest for reasons to go on. Go on I did. Through many heartaches, a suicide attempt, social, emotional, and economic turmoil. At 30 I met and fell in love with a man who would change my life. I had found my story. But it was not the one I wrote. In the place of bliss and ever-after was tumult and psychic warfare, the course of my life culminating in the complete destruction of my physical health.
A twenty-year journey down the ladder of health has now been resolved in only one. I still have a few small health issues, but I have shed six pant sizes, regrown most of my lost hair. I now pass for mid-thirties instead of middle-aged. Insomnia which kept me up till dawn has become blissful, full nights without waking. An absent libido has made an impressive comeback.
I feel content in my day-to-day, no matter what bad or good happens. In large part this is because of my stable health. My body is able to absorb stress instead of being leveled by it. I've learned how to do all this with a fraction of the strain and struggle of my early years. The secret is in the science of human physiology, of which I am of course no expert except in the reprieve it has given me. The details are technical, but the application is beautifully simple.
A long time ago my mother taped to the fridge a quote from a religious leader. It read, "Happiness does not depend on what happens outside of you, but on what happens inside."
I hated that quote. It seemed to require mortals be greater than the fixed condition of our mortality. Essentially it was impossible. I have come to learn that the quote is exactly right, but not for the reason the author said it. As Andrew Solomon said: "The opposite of depression is not happiness, but vitality." I have found vitality by the truck load, and from it springs all that is worthwhile in life. I want to help you find it to. It's easy to get, actually. You just have to know where to look, and adopt a self-honest attitude. Here I'll be sharing what I found.
UPDATE: A few years after writing this article my experience is now a book! It not only has my personal story and journey back to health but how I got there and the science and insights I gleaned from my experience on how the body actually works, which has led me to understand how to fix diseases like hypothyroidism, cancer, diabetes, and to even regrow lost hair, and you can read more about my personal experience and how to cure many of your own health problems by getting a copy of my book Fuck Portion Control.