I now have medical confirmation that by working out regularly I am increasing my strength and overall fitness level. I can’t tell you how good that felt. You know what that means …

It means that I’m still stuck at the idea that the opinions of others trump what I already know to be facts.

It means the approval of others trump the positive self talk that I do after finishing a routine or accomplishing a new goal.

It means that I’m still a five year old looking desperately for the approval of others.

I could say, and it wouldn’t be true, that what I got was the ‘validation’ of what I already knew to be true, but I won’t because it was the APPROVAL that really mattered to me.

I know that I can push myself further than when I first started. It was about 4 months in that I reduced the amount of support I needed to get around an airport, it was about 2 months after that that I stopped needing any at all. Notice the accomplishment? Check Self validation done? Check. And. Check.

I know that I’ve gone from using insulin to not using insulin and that I’ve been insulin free for well over a year. I know that all of my other drugs for diabetes have been lowered and, then, some eliminated all together. Did I make note of this? Check. Did I give myself approval. Check. And. Double Check.

I know that I can do things that I couldn’t before. I can pick stuff up off the floor from a standing position if I have something to brace myself and that I can push my wheelchair foot pads from up to down myself. Did I pay attention to this? Check. And. Check Again.

These are only a few of the indicators that the elimination of sugar and the inclusion of exercise into my life has done. I know that I feel differently in my body and more powerful in my life. I KNOW IT.

But, I now have a medical opinion that I’m fitter and stronger. And NOW it feels real.

I wonder if I’m destined to wander in the empty playground of first grade looking for someone else to point the way and someone else to pat my back. I hope not.

I’m 64.

Can I grow up now?