“With dripping drops of water, even a water jug is filled.” Dhammapada 121-122
How many times have you read an inspiring quote like this and said, “Yeah…I’m going to remember that,” only to fall back five minutes later into the same old same old?
It’s one reason I took off an “inspirational widget” from this blog. Even I, author of this blog, wasn’t reading it every day. And when I did, it looked good for the moment, then eventually (like…within a mouse click), I’d forget about it.
This quote, though…I need to give this quote props. When I read it on Tuesday night, I was distracted by the sound of water dripping in the kitchen. Thinking I’d left the faucet slightly on, I figured I’d check it out on my next visit to the kitchen. A few minutes later, I heard “splat, splat, splat” and I knew it wasn’t the faucet. We were having an ice storm, and what I found was water dripping from a leak in the roof.
I dug out a bowl and a towel and laid them under the drip. Water dripped slowly with an off-beat cadence for another few hours. Eventually it stopped and the bowl had filled to a few inches. I could have dumped it into the sink, but then I thought, What the heck? and watered one of my plants instead.
It was just a little serendipitous outcome, but one I thought about at length. If my original plan had been to generate enough water from the leaky roof to water my plants, I’d have been ticked off at all the time it took to gather a few inches of water. But my plan was to merely save my kitchen floor from a mini flood. The bonus wasn’t foreseen.
A “diet” and its real results are the same thing - the diet being a bucket and towel and only one hopeful outcome and the results being the water gathered for a plant. When you stick to your rudimentary plan, it will reap greater benefit. That’s what most people who aspire to lose weight miss.
I remember when I weighed 300 pounds and all I wanted was to lose weight IMMEDIATELY! As in RIGHT NOW, the moment I joined Weight Watchers. But it didn’t work that way. Right now, Weight Watchers centers and gyms all across the country are filled with people wanting a torrential wave of weight loss. I wish there was a way to let them all know that they have to chill, to drip, to gather water slowly. It will be worth it in the end.
Four years ago, when I started this journey, if someone had told me I’d still be grappling with weight issues after the big 168-pound loss, I’m not sure I’d have kept it up. But plugging along month after month with the drip, drip, drip of a pound here and a pound there, isn't so bad. I've learned so much and met so many awesome people that I wouldn't give that time up for anything.
So to those of you new to all this, please, stay in the moment. Day after day. Count your calories, Points, fat grams, carbs, whatever, but stay with it. Stay with the drip. Your bucket will fill up eventually (and your ass will diminish). Be patient. Be still.
Inspiration is fleeting. Dedication is key. And remember, roofing contractors don’t usually work in the winter. You’re on your own :)