Friday, May 13, 2011


Tomorrow May 14TH I will celebrate the completion of 58 full years of life and begin down the road of my 59th year. What that holds for me, I am not sure. For some reason this birthday is one of reflection. I think it might be because this has been a year where my mortality has become a reality and not something that is just blindly talked about.

What I mean is that since I was eighteen years of age, I have had doctors and others tell me that “If you do not lose weight, you are going to die”! I have heard this so many times over the years, that death was just become another word to me. A word with no personal individual meaning. Oh I have experienced death in my life as I am sure many of you. I have lost friends and family very close to me. I also have been ill, enough times and badly enough to be knocking at those doors of eternity. Yet when I was suffering with those illnesses, I seemed to have youth on my side and I would hear “Mike thank God you have a good heart”!

Well this all changed this year. Let’s face it first of all I am 58 years old. Even if I were the healthiest person walking this earth, I am still 58 years old. Oh and yes, I can still have another 20, 30 years ahead of me but there is a finite number of those years.

Oh I know the 50’s are the new 40’s and the 40’s the new 30’s etc. but is anyone telling the Big Guy in the sky that we humans have decided to push back time by 10 years?

Another thing that has happened this year is that I am beginning to have “Heart” problems and other medical problems that I have been warned about for many years that were going to catch up with me!

Therefore this birthday is one of real reflection, celebration, and gratefulness.
I am grateful to my “Maker” for giving me all this time so far. I am grateful for those who care for me and have followed God’s guidance to see me through some real tough times. I am thankful for those who love me. Needless to say at the top of that list is my wife. Then my son and his family. Then there is my extended family and friends who love me and have stuck by me through “thick and thin”.

I reflect on how lucky I have been. Though my battle has been rough and there have been some close times both medically and emotionally, I am still here to talk about them. I remain to be the luckiest man on earth.

I love the life that has been given to me, would I change some things if I could? Of course I would. Yet I desire. A “Hunger” to live, to carry on and believe me it is a fight sometimes. One that is worth it.

I love opening my eyes each morning to see that I am included in another day. Then by the end of the day, I love to put my head on my pillow and focus on the beauty of the miracle that I just privileged to live. The day, the events, the people I got to interact with was a thing of beauty!

That is why I sit here May 13th the day before my birthday and I make my plans. Plans for the day, the week, the next three months, the next 12 months, 60 months and yes I am taking bets that I will be around for the next 30 years.
Life and I have a deal. It goes like this… I don’t waste a moment of life and appreciate all of those moments, both good and bad, and in return, life will continue to give itself to me for many years to come.

Life is a bowl of cherries and yes sometimes you get a pit or two. When you do get those pits, what do you do? You spit them right out and dig right back in for another cherry. Life can be fun even at it most worse moments. Those would be the times to hang on the hardest and use the tools that you have gathered through your journey to help you get through it. Maybe it is a friend, a call, a book a professional or a prayer. Whatever it takes, fight to survive and live to enjoy another moment.

Even at my darkest moments if I looked real hard and opened up my eyes I saw light at the end of that tunnel (and still do)!

As a gift for my birthday that I give from me to you, I give you my love. I give you my hope. I give you my “Hunger” for this life.

May you never starve of hope and dreams, may you hunger for another day and may you be happy to be who you are and then from there….

we can start…!

Smile, Love


Mary Charles said...

Happy Birthday Michael and what a great blog. This is my first visit and i can not believe I have not been here before. You can not imagine how this blog message helped me today. I was in such a abad place but you are so right. I love reading it. Thanks for the words
Mary Charles

Anonymous said...

First off Happy Birthday my friend.. i wish you another 30 years of happiness.( yes I am taking that bet that you will be around)
I was reading this blog and started reflecting on my life and the road that i have taken and where i am now First off where did the time i go i wont mention age but wow how did i become this age lolol...
But i know that i will be around for alot longer but i do know after reading this that making plans for tomorrow and next week and even next year is something i need to ... sometimes we need to plan and follow plans and then i believe other things will follow....I know when i was losing weight before and life was going where i wanted it it was because i had plans and goals.. well its time to get back to off i go to do it.. first plan of the day is to make a plan
So again i wish you the very best Birthday and i send all my love to you on this day...
Love you

Kathy said...

Love and best wishes to you, Mike for a wonderful birthday and many more years on this earth.

Anonymous said...

Wishing you good health, spiritual calm and the the much deserved honour of love and of loving for your 59th year and many more to follow.
Dave C (Liverpool, England)

Anonymous said...

Happy Birthday and thank you for a great blog.

Anonymous said...

Mike I want to hunger for another day as you say. It is what i need to feel. Whhen I read your blog it helps me to feel hope. you are an inspiration and thanks for these blog blurbs]
Terri Marie

Anonymous said...

Dear Mike
You have been someone who I have been interested in for about 10 years. I am bulemic and I have to tell you that you have inspired me to go get professional help. I am doing well and on those bad moments I love to come to this site. Thanks you

Anonymous said...

Great Blog once again Mike good to hear from you

Anonymous said...

I come to this blog for a few reasons. First is to see how Mike is. I don't know him personally, I would love to meet him. He has inspired me for so many years. The other reason is to read these blogs. I get so much from them, even the ones I do not agree with get me going. Then the last reason is to see what others write what they are going through etc. I am having a rough time and it is killing me and my relationships bur I still can't stop! Any suggestions?
Olivia Frank

Anonymous said...

It is great to appreciate and acknowledge your age. I wont even go there. I lie so much about my age big time. I even have my mother confused.


whitehatter said...

Bit late but happy birthday Michael.
You did good for me in the past few years, learning of your fight got me off my behind and I lost a big chunk of weight. Now the war to keep it off.
It's good to have a fellow traveller there as an inspiration as you don't just fall over, you get back up and try again. That's been my story so far too, and now I'm serious about eating healthy and eating less.

Manchester UK

Anonymous said...

I too am late wishing you a happy birthday but I include you in my prayers everyday. You have been a leader in my life. I have followed you for years. If I leave you my number can you call me?
Soon I hope
Linda M.

Anonymous said...

hey i like the blog that u write.........would love to ask u how did u get motivated to lose weight.....i am 30 yrs old weigh about 100 kilos thats about 200 pounds i think and i just cant get myself to lose weight......i have read your story and was very touched by it......but i some how dont know how to get stared....


When I find myself the lowest, it is up to me to pick myself up. How? Call a friend, hug my spouse, play with the kids. Some people may buy themself a piece of jewlery (if you can) a new blouse. Get your nails something nice for you. Who else deserves your kindness? You are special and need a break. Go for it this is the first step in taking care oof you. little things first lead to the big ones..e.g. eating healthy and doing physical activity.
love you all

Anonymous said...

You have to keep going forward and not give up, I get it Mike. Easier said than done. I am trying to keep going forward. You have been a big help. Your inspiration words and experience just keep a light lit inside of me. Thank you so much
Robert Goldman

Tim said...

Michael you say how your battle has been rough both medically and emotionally. In the future can you talk more about the emotional part. This is where I neeed the most help.

Anonymous said...

Dear Mike or friends of Mike
I am 21 yrs old and I already weigh close to 500 pounds. My doctors wont do any surgery on me they say I am too young. Besides my mother and the band and lost 75 pounds and put back 45 my father had the bi-pass and lost 125 pounds and in the last six months gained about 50 and he is eating out of control. Is it a lost cause for me? What can I do? Anything? Nothing? Do I give up? Help?
Lisa D Ca.

Anonymous said...

Mikke I love how you end this message. It has so much meaning to me. If I can get that all together than I can start. Start to love myself, care for myself, take care of myself. Thanks Mike
Love you

Anonymous said...

Dear Mike
I love your messages and they really help but it is time for a new one, please

Anonymous said...

Dear Michael
I see on your twitter account you are still friends with Richard Simmons, do you talk to him often. Can I have his phone number or yours maybe? How about the addresses? I love the both of you and would love to talk and hang out with you if possible. Just let me know, thanks.

Anonymous said...

People should recognize your contribution to Obesity Awareness...For example, I can still remember, over 20 years ago..."Day would shtart off...Four bagels...witch butter, a pound of bacon...dozen scrambled eggs...couple hours later six slices of french toast...On Saturday afternoons...I'd eat 22 bologna sandwhiches...(Actual Darby Dental eyewitness - Lunching on Twinkees and crowd pleaser size cokes)" Happy Belated Birthday Michael! Keep up the keeping up my friend!