Saturday, September 24, 2011

A Different Sort of W.I.D.T.H.

 Hello Jack. 

 You don't know me and I don't know you, but I'm writing you because I have to thank you. 

If you want to know anything about me at all, I can tell you that my name's Giulia, I go by Zu, I am Italian, I'm a food and book addict (I know mixing drugs is dangerous, but sometimes I use those at the same time, too), and I'm one of your undoubtedly numerous followers (or more accurately, lurker). 

I don't even have a blog, I'm too much of a procrastinator to even think about maintaining one for more than a week; I do, however, follow other people's blogs quite religiously, yours in primis. I have a weight problem, obviously, I wouldn't be writing you otherwise, but I also have a social anxiety problem, which gave me quite a lot of problems in the last few years. 

I was  trapped in a maze of binge eating, guilt trips, feeling worthless, getting fatter and squashing everything down with more food. You know the drill. I'm not out of it, yet, not by a long shot (I wonder if I ever will be), but at least I see the emergency exit signs I wasn't able to see before. You, among other and far more personal reasons, are one of the whys you keep on asking about, why I do this here, why I do this now, why. Because I needed it, because I wanted to say that I was worth it (and believe it), because I needed someone to make me see this huuuuuuuuuuge mountain that I had in front of me exactly for what it was: just a gigantic pile of bullshit I had to climb one little step at a time. 

You have such a unique approach towards the food-issue and the weight loss-issue and the oh jesus do I have to go to the gym again-issue that made me realize that one of the biggest obstacles in reaching the top of that goddamned mountain (pardon my french, but they're neighbours) was simply my lazy-ass self and my non-stop whining about my not being able to reach my goals. I can't do it, so I won't do it (and cry a little about it, while I'm there). 

Guess what, I'm doing it, and I'm succeeding. So, that's why I wanted to thank you and your incredible sense of humour, for helping me realize that life's already miserable for 90% of itself and that it doesn't really need me to put another cherry of desolation on its shitty top. I leave you with my whys, you can choose one of them or throw them all away, it's your choice. I don't have any pictures of myself, besides the one I took when I decided I had enough and the one I took one year later; both pictures were taken on my birthday and none were taken in between, so my cards are a little...different. I leave them with you anyway. I will know that you read them and you'll know that you touched me, and that will be enough.

So long, and thanks for all the fish.

A hug,


I should have asked Zu's permission to share her correspondence with me, but think I'll implore her forgiveness instead. It just really captured pretty much what this entire project is about. I wish she had her own blog so I could follow along...

If you'd like to share your why-I-do-this-here note(s), please email 'em to me at Please pass along a blog link if you'd like it included.


  1. Incredible! Really good post. I love how creative the pictures are. Get a blog!!!! or write to Jack all the time and he can post on your behalf :)

  2. We are doing a 90 day challenge and thought you might like to join. The concept is fairly simple, 90 days until Christmas, 90 days to give ourselves the gift really want, to be back at our goal weight.

  3. This was an awesome W.I.D.T.H! So transparent and real. Thank you jack and Zu for sharing!

  4. Zu - GREAT guest blogger post!!! Loooooved it!!! Laughed out loud at your "oh hell, I wish" comment with picture. For some of us not familiar with metric terms, what were your stats in inches and pounds? Keep on keeping on, girl!!! Looking good!!!! Thanks Jack for this guest post... as well as your always-inspiring, thoughtful, and frequently hysterical blog entries.

  5. This is absolutely........... A-MA-ZING! Ahh Zu, get a blog - I think you already have adoring fans! What a great post, the pictures are fab and the commentary with them was laugh out loud funny, but very real!

  6. Amazing ZU! You are doing great!! I also wish you had a blog I could follow and post comments and encouragement to! Great job! Keep on, Keeping on!

  7. Thanks for sharing that Jack. Zu, start a blog; you're a good writer!

  8. Oh guys, I'm almost in tears now...

    Jack, thank you, you have no idea how much this means to me. You know all the part about social anxiety and all that? Apparently this, you posting my letter and pics in their entirety, with no editing at ALL, was something I didn't know I needed, but I did. This is one of the first time I've ventured on the internet without my mask on, my on-line persona, Linus blanket or whatever, but I don't feel half as nervous as I did when I had to the other times.
    I have blogged before, livejournal and forums and shit, but I can't keep it up for long, because I grow tired ot if quite soon. I never spoke of myself or my issues, and sometimes I right-out lied about who I was just to have more people talk to me; people I let down the second they tried to get closer. The internet is a great place for people like me, whose social and intellectual skills are great show up only when the people around are not "real", if you know what I mean. When shit's about to get real, I flee and hide in a corner, because I don't want people to know the real me. As absurd and sad as it sounds, I'm terrified that the real me is a lot less interesting than the me that's hiding in my head, behind all her insecurities and fears and sarcasms and witty quotes and jokes remarks. But now I know that you know and that you made other people know about that, and you're all *real* and you know, it's not as scary as it seemed before. Lately, I feel like I've been discovering hot water all over again a million times. (Wait...does that metaphor translate? I don't even know!) It's just...that I keep finding out that so many of the things that scared me to death were...well, not scary at all. Kinda like when you see a clump of hair on the floor of your shower and think it's a spider and start running around naked and screaming, potentially scarring your room-mate for the rest of her natural life (not that something like that ever happened to me, obviously...). The point is. Ugly and scary are two entirely different concepts, they: spiders sometimes are just hair, and that's it. I know now that the two (ugly and scary, not spiders and hair) aren't always associated or worse, listed in the dictionary along with my mugshot. I'm still learning how to cope with all of this and with the fact that I DO can become (eugh, sorry Mr. Webster) a better person also where I didn't think I could. I might think about staarting a blog, but don't y'all hold your breath, I don't want to be responsible for a new wave of Darwin awards. I just wanted to thank Jack for what he does, is all. Now I thamk also all of you fellow followers!

    For Debbie: I'm 5'8 (1.73 m); at my highest I weighed 250 pounds (115 kg, 5 kg more than portrayed in the first picture, taken around a time when I fluctuated enough with my weight). In the first picture I was around 242 (110 kg), in the second picture I was exactly 194 pounds (88 kg). Monday I have the next scheduled weigh-in, and I hope I'll have reached the 50 pounds milestone. That would feel great...keep your fingers crossed!

    Thank you ALL.

    (I hope that all made at least a little sense...)

  9. Zu - Thanks for the metric conversion info. WOW!!!!! Almost 50# gone... that's quite an accomplishment!! YAHOOOOOOOO FOR YOU!!!! I think you'll also find that the closer you get to your goal weight, the less social anxiety you will feel. Losing weight affects not just your outer body, but your inner body, heart, soul, and mind too. By your writing though, it sounds like you're well on your way to a complete transformation! So happy for you! Check in from time to time with Jack and let us all know how you're doing!! HUGS!!

  10. that was awesome. loved the pictures :) I think those thoughts are the thoughts that are in all of us. there's a whole world of people out here that understand, and have the same thoughts an feelings - you're not alone.

  11. You people are witches. You convinced me, I've opened a blog.



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