Last Sunday I walked Brushy Creek trail like so many Sundays before. But something was different. It wasn’t the light rain that was falling or the new audiobook on my iPhone. No, this day was different because of the overwhelming gratitude that I felt as the rain touched my face.
The morning before I was discharged from the hospital after a six-hour heart procedure. Sounds like something that might not elicit gratitude. But in me it did. You see a scant 4 years ago making it through or even to the procedure would not have been likely. Weighing in at a hefty, 358 lbs. breathless and bloated, I was stressed out and strident To read more how about how I came to this unfortunate state, read here. https://weightlossleadership.com/2018/04/09/fit-to-fat-lessons-learned-while-doubling-my-weight/
I needed a change to get healthy and I needed help to make the change. Luckily, God set people in my life that helped me to get fit. He also guided the hands of the gifted doctors and the kind deeds of caring nurses to bring me through on the other side. I began that Friday with a heart that was broken and left with a heart filled with gratitude and love!
As I slowly walked, amazed that I could do so after the procedure, I looked back on five things for which I was grateful.
- First is God. Throughout my journey to better health, God put people in my path, thoughts in my head, and love in my heart. One such person is Father Mike Schmitz whose podcasts taught me to love myself, love others and to love God. Another person is the ICU chaplain who is responsible for producing weekly Christian Meditations. These meditations have helped me to become calmer and look to God for answers. Less everyone think that God only works through podcasts, time and time again, events occurred at of nowhere to lead on me on the right path. One example is the company email that I got for a discount to Wellness that Works on the day I was about to give up (more on this organization in number 3). More recently, I have found passion and purpose as a Core member with my church’s Lifeteen group.
- Next are the doctors and nurses of Austin Heart. This gifted group correctly diagnosed my condition five years ago and set me on the pathway to health. With medication and skill, they helped me to get my initial problem under control, so I could lose the water and weight. With a stronger heart, I was able to exercise and get fit. More recently, they were able to diagnose a second serious problem and address it with my recent procedure. These doctor and nurses listed to my concerns and thoughtfully guide my decisions.
- Third is WW, the organization formerly know as Weight Watchers and now Wellness that Works. This organization and its Round Rock lead Julie Faircloth provided lessons, tools and nurturing support that have brought both fitness and comradery. There are no better friends than my Saturday group. To read more about this amazing group, read this blog https://weightlossleadership.com/2018/04/22/the-whys-of-weight-watchers/
- Fourth is my company. The culture of Accenture is inclusive and empowering, its program to support employees Truly Human gave me the tools and time to take time for me and to ultimately become more productive. https://weightlossleadership.com/2018/09/04/five-accenture-wellness-programs-that-saved-my-life/
- Lastly and most importantly is my family and friends. My wife has helped me through and loved me, through my weight gain and my journey to health. She has been a rock and helped me through the recent procedure staying with me every step of the way. She is kind but firm, leading me on the right path. She is my hero and my heart!
And then the walk was done. The rain had stopped, and the sun now shown as gratitude flowed in my repaired heart!