Dakota’s Way – and No Other Way.

Rudy’s.  Having become a stop in Delaware that did not exist when I left for Mexico – the appearance of Rudy’s when I returned, it just matches the glimpses of humanity I was lucky enough to experience while in Mexico. What does Rudy’s Family Diner have to do with glimpses of humanity?  I am so glad you asked.

Years ago when I visited Rudy’s while still living in Mexico, and visiting the states, somewhere around 2015 or so, when visiting in Rudy’s, a then newly found restaurant, presented itself when I interviewed Angel,  Screen Shot 2018-09-22 at 9.10.44 PMan amazing hostess that went into the beginning steps of how Rudy’s came to be.

Here we are in 2018 – and our host, Dakota, with my cousins – came across Dakota’s story.  His tale of being over 405 pounds two years ago, and standing in front of us at no more than 250 pounds, his story was profound.

“Always being the biggest person in the room, I decided to turn the bullying I received into a more positive spin, I became the happy bi guy in the room who was everyone’s friends.”  As I heard Dakota mention several times how he used the term bullying several times without being aware of it in the next few sentences, I thought of the hardship he faced and worked through when that occurred, striving to push that hurt down to the surface and be positive and friendly towards others in the midst of this emotional encounter over and over.

Dakota then went on to express how after two years, his doctor, who he avoided during this two year period where he lost over 200 pounds ON HOW OWN, no plans, no programs, no medicines, allowed him to present himself to his doctor who did not RECOGNIZE HIM. Either did his friends who remembered him as the biggest guy in the room, and then I pondered how he felt at that point.

His story (which is history)  just hit me in the middle of my consciousness. He told me of his uncle’s death at just under 39 years of age and he realized he was looking into his own death being 400+ pounds.  He relayed his story of how he just decided the painful 3 months of pain in eliminating soda, the 7 main meals he’s consume a day, AND HE WORKED in Dunkin’ Donuts across of what is now Rudy’s Diner AND a restaurant while doing this. Line cooks he worked with began cooking foods that would help him travel this journey, and EVERYONE he worked with began to pull him into a circle of support that 200 pounds later, with so many days and nights that HAD to be more than painful, turned into this grand slam payday we were talking about this very day.

His explanation about a bag of marbles in one hand, a bag in the other with glue all through the marbles.  He told me when you turn the bag of marbles with glue upside down, how everything just STICKS, he relayed the analogy to starches and carbs that he had been consuming, and then his journey to change his life so he could find those items that would not “stick” inside as the carbs and starches.  As simple an analogy that sounds nothing matches the passion that accompanied his eyes as he told this so very amazing story of Dakota’s.  He went on to talk about how the muscle mass he lost in record waves was the downside to the positive side of the amazing amount of weight he lost.  He then went on to tell us how he changed his diet so he only gained one pound while eating the foods that would restore his muscle in the high percentages with stripping out the fat and replacing the former lost muscle.

To hear Dakota’s story, you begin to think WHO HAS THE STRENGTH TO GO THROUGH SUCH A JOURNEY, day after day after day and survive this?  I then realized the hurt that Dakota must have felt while being designated the biggest funny guy in the room; the complete heart he has always had that has fueled his determination, passion, and soul that pushed Dakota not retain a revengeful heart years later, to be absolutely 100% positive to the very people that could have (and I am sure in some cases hurt him) inside, a person they did not see except as being the biggest man in the room.  His amazing journey of kindness in the midst of hatred, his amazing journey of hope when surrounded by despair, his amazing courage in the face of defeat – it just hit us sitting there in the middle of what we thought would be a pretty average lunch – which turned into being one of the most inspiring moments I can recall – yet connected to inspiring athletes I wish I had the words to pass on to from a Cross Country meet I referred to in the previous post.  All at Rudy’s Family Restaurant.  Make sure you let Dakota know when you are at Rudy’s  how resonating his journey, with the support of so many kind souls around him, is to so many others.   The right comments about others can be just as viral as the negative and that facts changes everything for those around us.

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About Harry Brake

Employee of Woodbridge High School, Library Media Specialist, Media crazy! :)
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