Adam and I have a friend that is a dietician and a religious watcher of the Biggest Loser. She talks about it all the time so somehow we found ourselves watching the finale of last season. We were totally hooked. Not that we need another television show to watch, but seriously, what happens on that show is nothing short of miracles.
I set up the DVR to record this season and we've been watching every episode (the only thing that sucks about having a DVR is that you literally become addicted to your favorite shows because you never miss them). The theme of this season is "second chances". They have the guy from last season that was, at the time, the biggest contestant ever on the show, a girl that was the child of a heroin addict that self-medicated with food, the girl that was voted onto the show during last season's finale, etc. But my favorite contestant is the one I want to tell you about. I literally cannot see Abby's story without bursting into tears. Adam was catching up on the show on Saturday and I wasn't even in the room but I could hear her talking and I spontaneously started crying.
Basically, Abby was married and had a five year old daughter and a newborn son in small town Texas. She wasn't feeling well so she had gone to the emergency room while her husband took the kids out. The three of them were hit by a driver going more than 100 MPH and all were killed instantly. Her entire life... gone in a split second. I can't imagine from any angle what she's been through. It hurts my soul to think about losing my parents and brother or losing Adam and our hypothetical kids. I can't hear her talking about it without feeling physical pain for her. If it had happened to me, I probably would have self-medicated with a hell of a lot more things than just food. I don't think that I'd have the heart to go on!
She was doing a workout with Jillian Michaels on the show last week and if you don't watch the show, Jillian is famous for "breaking" the contestants by getting to the root of their issues during their workouts. Her philosophy is that if she can force them to be uncomfortable enough to deal with what's behind their over-eating that they will better be able to deal with it when they leave the show and go out into the real world. Obviously, with Abby, Jillian was about 10,000 times more sensitive than normal. It's not like Abby has issues, per say, she had a mega-tragedy strike her and dealt with it better than many of us could have. It's not like she used alcohol or drugs to deal with her pain. Her situation was different than the other contestants in that she came to the show to lose weight and find a reason to live again. When Jillian was asking her what it's like to lose everything, I was runny nosed and just short of sobbing. It was so sad! But you know someone is amazing when Jillian Michaels is inspired by them.
Abby's team lost at the weigh-in, meaning that they had to vote for a team member to be sent home. Since their team had been sent home to be without Jillian as their trainer in the previous week, Abby asked to be the one voted off because she felt like that visit showed her that she had made progress and she could learn be alive again. Of course, I was screaming at the tv the whole time she was volunteering because she's my favorite, but after watching her talking about it to Al Roker this morning, I realized she was right to go home. After all, she felt like she had completed her journey toward the real reason she was on the show, to find purpose again. She said this morning that she wanted Shay, Amanda and Daniel to stay because they had never known the joy and happiness that she had with her family and wanted them to continue on the ranch to be able to feel the things she already had in life. How great a person is that? How unselfish and awesome is she? Shay, who is the one I mentioned above that was a child of a heroin addict, said on the show that her entire life she had been fighting to try to get her mother to love her and then she came on the Biggest Loser and the one person who gave her love the most freely was Abby.
I'm going to have to stop telling you about her or I'll start crying again! I can't write well enough to even scratch the surface of doing Abby justice. And cheesy or not, the Biggest Loser is really one of the best shows on television right now. I'm kind of mad that I never discovered it before!
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