Welcome to Sunday Morning Selfie. My name is Joe Bryant, I am a Seattle area teacher and broadcaster and I blog about my life and lifestyle and use this exercise in self reflection as a way of being accountable to myself as I strive for lower weight and better health in 2017. So how is that going? Read on to find out.
I want to begin this morning by addressing the Elephant in the room which, unfortunately, is still me. My current weight is 225 lbs. This is exactly the same weight I was last Sunday. Why am I not losing weight? Because I have been stuck for a good amount of time on many levels.
I began the year full of enthusiasm and dedicated to weight loss and to chronicling my adventure in this blog. I have had lots of success, dropping more than 30 lbs. BUT, as the months have passed by, the schedule got more insane, and my work/life balance became more askew than it perhaps ever has in my life, I have paid “lip service” to my commitment to diet and consistently follow the 30/10 Weight Loss for Life program. I have also paid a bit of lip service to pizza, beer and yesterday, a rather sizable tub of peanut sauce. Who knew that Romaine Lettuce slathered in peanut sauce could taste so good?
So the eating plan for this week is simple. As they suggested to me at 30/10 the last time I went in but did not do, I am going to chronicle “EVERY BITE” of food that goes in my mouth this week and hope that will be the exercise that gets me unstuck and back to being accountable to myself.
I still would LOVE to be at 217 by 6/20, Emily’s graduation day, but at this point that is going to mean losing almost a pound a day. Time to put up or shut up.
I will confess that this whole end of the school year, graduating business has hit me pretty hard. As a teacher it is tough to see your students move on, particularly when they are also your leaders and primary source of help running the radio station. I am losing four kids but am thrilled that three of them will continue with radio in college. (One is going to school to be a chef. But with the popularity of all these food shows on TV I could see how the skills he has learned in my class may help him build a brand in the food industry as well)
The whole thing has had me in a bit of a funk until it dawned on my that this is the way it is SUPPOSED to be.
My Broadcast Media program at Mercer Island High is a bit like a successful college football team. At a great football school like Alabama they almost always are very good but they are also CONSTANTLY losing their best players when they move on to the pros.
But when this happens, if you have a solid program, the younger players step up and prepare for their moment to be leaders and stars.
While I selfishly dreaded losing staff and seeing my prodigy’s “go pro”, and for one that means starting to work at CBS Radio on Monday, I now realize that having them continue on to bigger things is EXACTLY as it should be and the entire reason I have been put in a position to mentor them.
Watching my Seniors walk to receive their diplomas on Wednesday evening at Key Arena, then coming in Thursday morning to see that their names had already been removed from the Student PD’s office door and replaced with NEW names makes me realize that our little radio station, and my lessons to teach, will only improve with each passing year and the goal is to crank out more winners like the four that spread their wings and flew in 2017. The goal is bigger media opportunities and radio transmitters for those who aspire to them, but more importantly, the goal is to teach confidence and communication skills that will help students be better at whatever may come next.
I also had one of my rare moments of clarity driving back home from the MI graduation where I saw EXACTLY where to take my teaching next year. This is truly an AMAZING plan if I do say so myself. I will save the details for another time but it is going to be something I think everyone who follows my story is going to really enjoy and my students are going to be more engaged than ever before.
The BIG Transition
Of course the MASSIVE transition is the one that will happen on 6/20. That is when Emily puts a cap on her head and puts a cap on a 12 year career in the Bellevue Public Schools system. As father and member of the Newport class of 1981 I am SO PROUD she is continuing the legacy as a Newport Graduate in 2017. This is another topic I will surely expand on at another time but the gown is here and the reality is sinking in that very soon Kelli and I will be sending our only child out into the world.
Newport is a very tough school and she will be well prepared as a graduate for the next level in education. She is also more than ready to pursue entertaining an audience with her incredible talent as an actor and singer and topped off her High School dramatic career to much applause and laughter as a cast member of “Friday Night Live”. This is a great parody of SNL the Newport Drama students do. The only difference is that instead of featuring Aidy Bryant the star is Emily Bryant!
BTW- Check out this great “family photo” Emily and I took with Aidy in New York a few months ago. There is also a “preview” of what the grad will look like when she receives her diploma!
Would You Pay $500 to do this?
Today after I get done blogging and doing some yard work I am going to go swim a few laps at our neighborhood pool. This will be my second swim since January and, since we are paying $120 a month for a family membership I figure each swim is costing me around $500.
Obviously this is not a great value so my other promise to myself this week, other than being diligent about my food journal, is to visit the pool three times. I need to either bring that “cost per swim” average way down or quit being a member. Since I value having a nice pool within walking distance of home my goal is to opt for the former and start taking the time to enjoy this wonderful facility I pay good $ to be a part of.
Which sort of brings me back full circle to the work/life balance thoughts that we began this blog with.
One of my departing Seniors showed wisdom beyond their years this week by sitting me down and reminding me about the importance of a proper balance. While she appreciated my dedication to teaching and all the opportunities I provide students I was also gently reminded that nothing is more important than family and not to let my career and the “all-in” nature of the way I tend to do things cost me my relationships with the ones in my life that mean the most.
Working 12 hours a day at the part time job I love has been so all consuming for me that I sometimes forget to appreciate all the people in my life that mean so much and do so much for me. Many of my best friends and closest family members read this blog simply to know what the heck I am up to as I never take time to check in otherwise.
With all new endeavors there is a learning curve and training to be a teacher and manage a radio station has come with an incredibly challenging and steep one. So much so that perhaps I have lost some perspective on what makes life truly important and fulfilling.
So my three promises to myself this week are to chronicle all my food intake, hit the pool a minimum of three times, and by far the most important, take the time to share this wonderful season of transition and celebration with family, friends and all the people I love so dearly.
The purpose of this blog is self-reflection and to try to become a better person in 2017 both physically and in other ways.
As my wife Kelli wisely pointed out this week we are ALL humans and we are ALL just doing our best.
Sometimes I am guilty of getting so wrapped up in what “I” am doing for others I do not take the time to properly appreciate all the things THEY are doing for me. This comes across to many as self-importance and it is something I am glad has been pointed out as a blind spot I need to work on.
I am a work in progress but vow to keep working on my short comings and so appreciate all those in my life who are there to support and encourage my progress.
With that being said I think its time to go take a $500 swim!
Until next time, Joe