The Koi Experience

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The majority of the participants in the Hairscapades GOC have established health and/or fitness goals in addition to their hair goals. Most of us know that a health body equals healthy hair. In order to help you achieve these goals, I will be providing a series of posts related to exercise and diet (diet, not DIETS;). In addition, JKoi (a fellow NC.com GOC blogger, a MARINE and an aspiring personal trainer) has graciously offered to provide weekly articles on health and fitness topics. So, I wanted to take a moment to introduce her to you.

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 The Koi Experience

J Koi of The Koi Experience

A Koi is a fish, a type of carp actually. Trust me I’m not trying to insult your intelligence, there may be some that have no idea what I am talking about.  The Koi is a decorative fish from China; you may have seen them in various Chinese/Japanese restaurants.

Nice to look at, huh?

Koi-no-Takinobori is the Japanese name for the Chinese legend of a carp that became a dragon after swimming up a waterfall at the headwaters of the Yellow River. Legend  has it that out of perhaps a million Koi, only once in many years, one Koi is dedicated and strong enough to swim, against all odds, up a waterfall known as the “Dragon Gate” at the beginning of China’s Yellow River. The gods would be so very impressed by the feat, that it would be rewarded with becoming a dragon. The story symbolizes the virtues of courage, effort, perseverance, and overcoming adversity.

I became so infatuated with the theme because that was where I was in my life at the time, trying to persevere through the hardships that I was facing in the Marine Corps…or so I thought. I even got a tattoo in 2009 designed by a good friend of mine as a constant reminder to always strive for greatness and accomplish every goal I set for myself.

I think that was the only thing I actually said I was going to do and actually did that year.

After a sequence of events that will be saved for another set of posts, I realized that I was out of shape and squishy, depressed to the point of over eating, drinking, smoking, not sleeping at all and finding alternatives to temporary happiness (screw it, it was sex—yeah even when I was squishy). My career in the Corps was in jeopardy and my personal life was in shambles. I didn’t even feel connected to God, putting up a front every Sunday at church. My anger and negative thoughts controlled me more than I would like to admit; I hurt people that were close to me and a couple of guys that didn’t deserve it. My own mother told me that I was not the Jen that she knew anymore.  I would put up this front at work that it seemed like I had it all together, thinking I was doing just enough to look impressive, when the entire time I felt like a failure and hated myself for it.

It got to the point that I had to take a really good look in the mirror and stop blaming everything and everyone else for my dilemma, which was all I knew how to do at the time.

So I decided to set off on this path to find myself again, to put things into motion to truly love myself and take care of myself, which in turn will better everything I am involved in, including my career.

I would like to say that presently I’m half way through this journey which inspired me to create this blog, to share what I did and am doing now to find myself again and to make myself a better person. You will see that I’m striving to be a beautiful person not just on the outside but on the inside as well, but I am definitely not perfect and I embrace my flaws which some of you may share as well.

This stopped being a “lose weight, look better, find a man, change personality, get promoted” journey. There is so much more that I wasn’t aware of that I needed to repair to be well again. The path I have taken up to now has caused a transformation in me; I am and will never be the same.

I desire to encourage people to stop the patch of destruction. The way to living a healthy life isn’t just the food you eat or how much exercise you do. There has to be work put in so that you will never fall back into the same pattern again. It’s not something that can be done over night, but with the right guidance it can be a total revelation that could alter the course of your entire life. This experience is amazing and for you all who have been thinking for a while that maybe some things need to change, then hopefully following The Koi Experience will help you.

 

Shine on….


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9 responses »

  1. What a beautiful testimony to self-examination, self-love and acceptance, and perseverance. I wish you many Blessings in your journey. Thank you for sharing JKoi!

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