I recently met with an old friend of mine who is a United States Marine. We were best friends growing up through high school. We did everything together. I remember getting the call shortly after high school that he was being sent to Iraq. I remember him looking up at me saying, he didn’t know when he would be back, but he will see me again. After several months of not seeing or hearing from him, life went on. He thankfully came back alive and in one piece but not the same person. I was so excited to see him again but he had changed. Being overseas for a while in a negative environment put him into an angry and fight mode all the time, this was how he was conditioned and frankly I can’t blame him for that. He had a great girlfriend that stuck by his side and remained completely faithful through the entire time. This type of loyalty can’t be found by many people’s wives, never mind a girlfriend. I on the other hand became a coward. I was about young with a family to protect and decided to stop communication with him. I turned my back to someone I loved when they needed help and used the rationalization that I was protecting my family to make myself feel better for doing it. Perhaps it was out of fear of my own well being, I don’t know. I thank god that his girlfriend who he later married stuck by him while he got the help he needed, because I certainly did not. It wasn’t until recently that I decided to track him down. When we spoke we were equally excited to speak and see each other and literally picked up right where we left off, best friends again. My friend got the help he needed and was level headed, he has a great family life and career, I’m proud of him.

Marine Corps Seal - CT Health Center

There’s something to be said about the loyalty his girlfriend has. That loyalty and trust is what you expect and want in a relationship but is rarely given. So often we find others turning their backs to the people they care about. It’s admirable that she had such courage, faith and loyalty. I know they have a great trust and bond together. There is nothing they can’t conquer, together because all they need is to know that one another got the other’s back.

I was so excited that he welcomed our friendship back into his life, because I really wasn’t sure how he would react. I do have a major regret however, I turned my back to someone I cared so much for when he needed me the most. I will live with that the rest of my life, I can’t ever change that, ever.

There are a couple things that need attention here. First, is loyalty in relationships. Does your partner REALLY have your back? Seriously? When you’ve set a goal for yourself are they there for YOU or are they more interested in how it’s going to affect THEM? Do they have motives that you may not initially be aware of? Think about it. Let me ask you this, are you making decisions right now that you don’t want to be making and is it possible you have already been manipulated? Looking at it now, I can admit that I am guilty of it in the past. These can be difficult yet very serious questions to ask yourself when wanting to make changes in your body or just going through certain goals in your life. If you are with someone who cares more about how what you are doing is going to affect them, then quite often they will manipulate you into thinking you are doing things that are not in-line with your original goals, also what may happen is that they will sabotage you along the way! Seriously think about your current situation, are you currently making decisions right now that are preventing you from your goals, the goals that resonate in YOUR heart? If you have someone working against you then you either need to know how to deal with it or need to know how to be prepared when you want to make changes because if you aren’t, you could get completely BLINDSIDED.

Loyalty - Connecticut Fitness

Here is the second thing to think about from my experience. Have you ever turned your back on someone you really cared for and made an excuse for it? Was there someone who could have needed help but you looked away as if it wasn’t needed? I regret my situation because I felt like a coward but mostly because I missed so much time with him that I will never ever get back. So what if it would have been a little uncomfortable, he needed me and I wasn’t there. Now, all I can do is look back at pictures, videos and listen to the stories of all that time lost when I should have and could have been there to experience along side with him. The lesson learned here is although it may make you feel uncomfortable and that someone needs help, let them get it, be there for them and move on with your life together through out the process so you don’t have to look back and regret losing all that time that didn’t have to be wasted. It takes courage but I guarantee your relationship with that person will be a lot stronger than ever, that they will appreciate it and hold your relationship to a higher standard than ever before! This can only empower someone instead of kicking them down. If someone has a goal to empower themselves then instead of turning a cheek or keeping them down, help raise them up, help them through the process. I know whole heartedly the return will be 10 fold! In combination of this lesson lies another. I am so grateful he instantly just forgave and forgot. How often do we hold grudges or want to hurt others for their wrong doing, even if it’s just in our minds. It’s wrong to do and think this way. No matter what your beliefs, in all teachings it states to forgive and forget. There is great power in that only our creator and our universe really understand. We all have wronged others in some way; we cannot possibly ask for forgiveness and expect it in return unless we give it ourselves.

Edge Magazine Feature

As I reflect on my faith, relationship with my creator, what has been taught to me and all the lessons life has to offer I had a great revelation about how you live your life it is a reflection of how you treat yourself which is paralleled with your fitness. I understand that we are meant to live, love, learn and teach. I always knew how fitness will change your life, but it has grown more obvious to me that you also have to change your life to become fit. These acts together will create success, not just one or the other. You have one body, treated it wisely. I believe life and fitness go hand in hand. All life situations can always relate back to how you treat your body. Every day you have choices, please choose wisely. Life isn’t wrapped with a bow but it’s certainly a gift. Live every second like it matters because it does. We are all going to screw up at times, but if you make a lesson out of it, teach or remind others and move on then you are moving in the right direction! Under this philosophy, the best is yet to come!