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Welcome to the inside of my brain. Here, I share experiences, tips, tricks and fun things I've learned during my weight loss journey. 

  • Gail Ballin

6 States in 14 Days.

The last few weeks have been a whirlwind…

A little over two weeks ago, I was on a conference with one of my direct reports when Robby called my cellphone. I couldn’t answer, so I sent one of those automated “I can’t talk right now” texts back to him. His response was quick and simply put, it said “My dad passed away this morning.”

Reading the text message shook me to the core. I ended my business call and contacted Robby immediately.

Everyone knows that death is inevitable, but when we are faced with the loss of loved one it is still devastating. Robby was beside himself. His father’s death was completely unexpected and the shock of the news really hit him hard.

The subsequent few days were filled with family gatherings, tears, memories and stories that made us all laugh and cry. Despite the occasion, the time spent together was heartfelt and wonderful.

As a therapist, I was trained to help people deal with grief, but when it hits this close to home, it’s hard to see your loved one deal with that kind of pain. Robby and I talked - a lot. We went to the gym, took long walks and I even made him his favorite meals to try and get him to smile (I don't cook much these days). I even dug deep into my bag of tricks and tried to ease his sorrows with some Ben and Jerry’s - but it didn’t really work. As we all know, food will not heal the pain, it only masks what we feel for a short time. In this case, I think that time, along with a lot of love and continued support will really be key to healing his wounds.

The day after the funeral, Robby and I left for Florida. It was the end of the spring semester and my son, Josh, was ready to come home. It had been 2 years since we dropped him off of at school and he had never actually left campus for any length of time that required him to remove all of his belongings. He took summer courses last year, so over time, he accumulated a lot more than what we dropped him off with.

Robby drove all night so that we could get to him early in the morning. Josh was eager to leave campus and I was beyond excited to see him. There’s nothing more gratifying than hugging your kid - no matter what the age. The reunion was wonderful! I laughed and cried both from exhaustion and happiness. I had my kid with me again - at least for the next few days.

Josh was hungry so we took him for lunch. He knows how much I love to try new healthy options, so he introduced us to the Acai bowl at Sweetberry Bowls in Fort Meyers. It was THE BEST thing I had eaten in a very long time. It’s essentially a smoothie with sweet granola and fresh fruit on top - drizzled with a bit of organic honey. Healthy, refreshing and absolutely delicious. To this day, I still talk about, and crave an acai bowl! If you’re in Fort Meyers - check them out. Totally worth it!

After our indulgence, we packed up the cars and checked into the hotel. The next day, we headed back up north - stopping in Ocala to meet Josh’s girlfriend, Aubrey and her family.

Josh was home for 10 days - and it was wonderful. Having both of my kids home was amazing! My mom even came to visit and we had a fabulous time together. He had a summer internship planned in Baltimore, so, once again, we headed out and road-tripped him up to his new abode in the suburbs of Baltimore.

We’ve been through 6 states in the last 2 weeks and through a whirlwind of emotions, but through it all, I’ve been able to stay on track - for the most part. My exercise took a bit of a hit, but that’s to be expected. Can’t get to the gym when you’re driving down the highway.

I’m down 4.5 lbs and I have a renewed spirit. I’ll talk about that in my next blog.

Bee healthy. Bee happy.

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