Kipwil leapt out of bed in the morning, excited and nervous all over. Today was the day of the last task. What would it be? What did Queen Mish mean when she said " most challenging task yet"?
Kipwil walked into the screening room to see a set of scales, a tape measure and a camera.
Hmmmm, Kipwil though anxiety mounting. I think this means....
" Morning Kipwil! " Queen Mish cheerily interrupted Kipwil's thoughts. " Today is the day of your final task. Are you ready?"
" I...I think so", Kipwil replied a little nervously, her heart beginning to thud in her chest
" Great!", Queen Mish went on. " Today is your first weigh in and measurement day and after that, we will take a photo of you....this will be stored in the 'OLD ME' vault"
" erk," said Kipwil a little sickly. Kipwil avoided cameras whenever she could.
" Come on, you can do this!" Queen Mish encouraged. " This is the benchmark for you to start from. It will only get better from here I promise, but how far will you know you have come if at first you don't know where you've been?"
Sighing heavily, Kipwil nodded and turned to look at the equipment lying on the table beside her.
" First, let's weigh", said Queen Mish. " I expect you to do this first thing in the morning every Wednesday morning so we can keep track of your progress."
Kipwil took down the scales and positioned herself . As the numbers flicked over and over, she squeezed her eyes shut and tried not to whimper.
" That's not so bad!", said Queen Mish. " Remember its a starting point, we'll see what happens each week. Now for measurements."
Kipwil waited patiently as the tape measure flew around her, measuring her bust, her waist, her hips and her thighs. Her eyes remained tightly squeezed throughout the whole process.
" Kipwil, you can open your eyes now, " said Queen Mish, a laugh bubbling up in her throat. " Now for the final step and you have completed the task. The photo."
oh HELL no, Kipwil thought and with a pounding heart she fled the room.
Hubba Hubba found her outside a little while later, sitting in the garden despondently, staring at a bee hovering over the flowers. He sat down beside her and just held her in a huge hug.
" Queen Mish said I'd find you here," he said " What's up?"
" I'm so podgy and fat and awful" Kipwil said tears sliding down her face." I feel disgusting and disgusted with myself and now she wants me to take a picture of me like that. A picture of disgust."
Hubba Hubba sat silently with Kipwil in the sun for a little while. They watched the bee fly off fully laden with his pollen before he spoke.
" This is the final step babe. And you've been through so much to get to this point. Let's not stop. We can do this. It's just a picture, it's not you. You are not the fat or the flab. You are amazing and funny and my wife whom I love very much and I would be lost without."
" I'd be lost without you too", sobbed Kipwil into his arms.
" So let's do this. I'll take the picture if you want. Who knows? What you achieve may inspire someone else to change their life and move from Nothing Ever Changes. You will have helped someone without ever knowing you did or how you did. Besides, it's not that bad."
Kipwil nodded and said tearily, " You're right. Can you take the picture please? I can't hide away forever and Queen Mish said it was just to see the change in me over time, hey."
" Exactly" Hubba Hubba replied and smiled.
And that's how Kipwil found herself in the now dark screening room with Hubba Hubba, standing in her swimmers that she never wore without a tshirt over the top, getting her photo taken. As soon as the picture was taken, a golden light, like a laser appeared and inscribed the following beside the communication screen on a chart:
KIPWIL'S AMAZING ADVENTURE IN 12 WEEKS.
Weight: 55.9 kg
Chest: 88.5 cm
Hips: 87.5 cms
R Thigh: 44.5 cms
L Thigh : 45 cms.
Kipwil gasped when she saw the photos and burst into tears again.
" Why have I never seen that in the mirror?" She sobbed, a little panic in her voice.
Hubba Hubba held her and stroked her hair. " I love you" is all he said.
Queen Mish's voice interrupted Kipwil's crying. " Kipwil, come here so I can see you."
Kipwil turned her face towards the screen, tears pouring down her face. She felt so ashamed of herself.
" Kipwil," Queen Mish began gently," no one is here to judge you or to revile you. All 12WBTers start somewhere. Some have chosen to share their pictures, watch."
On the screen flashed up photographs of men and women, all sad, all overweight, all looking defeated in their bodies. Then amazingly, the photos were each replaced by other photos but while the people were the same, they were also different! They were healthy, shining, glowing with smiles and strength and you could just tell they were adoring life and doing everything they could. Life was GOOD for them and they showed it in every part of them.
" Kipwil, in 12 weeks, that will be you" Queen Mish said looking straight at her. " You have made the commitment, now it is real and now it will be done. If you follow my rule, do the hard work and keep to your goals map, you will succeed. I promise you. Do you believe me?"
" yes" whispered Kipwil, then louder " yes, I do believe you."
"Kipwil, your first duty as a 12WBTer is coming up. I will give you the details tomorrow . For now, relax and enjoy your family and your new city. Welcome, my friend, and I look forward to working with you."
And with that, Kipwil and Hubba Hubba were left alone.
What is Kipwil's first duty? Will she get over the self loathing she felt when she saw the photos? Stay tuned for the next episode.