I woke up this morning feeling as if I was beginning Act II of my life. This whole process with PEOPLE and their “Half Their Size” issue has been about inspiring, encouraging and motivating others, and giving the people in my life a real, tangible example of someone who could do the unthinkable. Ten years ago, I read this annual issue and wondered how people found the strength to lose weight, and each year, I’d purchase it, asking that same question. Now, I’m that person!
My “before” photo was taken by my friend Dan Moran in November 2007, at possibly the lowest point in my life. That morning, my back and knees ached, my face was scattered with acne and I hated how my clothes fit. There was nothing I could do. I was trapped inside of my own body, and each day I had to put on a brave face and step out into the world, facing people who would assume that I was just lazy or sick. I wasn’t living, I was just existing, taking up space and taking for granted the gift of life. Seeing friends and family pass away from diseases and cancer really impacted how I felt about my selfish and destructive behavior, and I realized I needed to completely remove myself from my old life to find myself.
Six months and nearly six years later, I could have never imagined 175 lbs would come off of my body in that time. Truthfully, it is hard to lose ONE pound, let alone five, fifty or one hundred, let alone keep it off the right way. That’s what makes this so much fun to see. You all don’t know the people in the P90X commercials, but you know me. You know that I have good days, and bad days, and above all else, all I can do is give honest, consistent effort and hope for the best.
I am so thankful to have an amazing support system of friends and family who encourage and motivate me to keep improving myself, and social media and tools like Fitbit and Lose It! that help me to stay accountable for myself. Y’all are still going to see me posting crazy dishes, but just know I hit the gym before I enjoyed it!
In the issue, I step out of my comfort zone to share a deeply personal story and to let people know that until you are six feet under, anything is possible. It’s been emotionally challenging (but ultimately worthwhile) to dig through the crates and see old photos and recall sad events, but it has been an amazing reminder of how far I have come.
From my time with “Big Brothers” to volunteering, I believe in a life of service, and positively impacting others. My mind is blown that over four million people will purchase this issue, and that 30 million people will eventually see what has become PEOPLE’s biggest issue of the year.
There are several people right now who call, text and email me for support and I love being there for them. I’m humbled to think that a stranger will draw strength from me. I didn’t have that person when I started this process, so I made him. That’s a heavy thought.
From this point out, I’m going to blog regularly at www.kodiseaton.com, posting (I hope) funny and inspirational stories, my favorite recipes, exercises and workout tracks. I feel that I have found my purpose, and I am so grateful for all of your kind words and well-wishes. Happy new year!
Let’s get to work!