Tonight, Sunday November 22, 2009, I sent the following email to friends and family. 

Dear Friends and Family:

I am grateful every day for the many gifts in my life: my health, my work, the wonderful people with whom I share my days.  But as we approach Thanksgiving each year, I am troubled by the clear disparity between those of us planning to overindulge throughout the holiday season and those in our communities for whom merely having enough is a daily struggle.

This year I want to do something very personal to combat hunger, and I am writing to enlist your participation.

As you know, I have struggled with my own relationship with food most of my life.  What I am proposing is to spend the time between Thanksgiving and Easter working to lose weight, studying and learning more about how to eradicate hunger, and raising money for an organization which combats hunger in the U.S.

I lose the weight, learn and share via this blog, and you, if you are so inclined, sponsor my weight loss.

Here’s how it will work:

1.  Sponsors pledge a certain amount of money for each pound I lose between November 28, 2009 and April 4, 2010. I am pledging $3 per pound or $300,whichever is greatest — however, you may choose any amount to pledge per pound lost.  I picked these dates because I see these holidays as being very food-centered.

2.  Each Thursday, I will weigh in and upload a photo of the weight read-out on my scale. I will also share both my own stories about this challenge, and information on hunger and hunger relief organizations.  I hope you will choose to visit and comment on my blog, whether you choose to be a sponsor or not.

3.  In March, all sponsors will have the opportunity to vote on which profiled organization will receive our combined donation.  Simple majority rules. I would like to list sponsors on this site, though amounts will remain private — except for the total amount raised which I will share on Easter.

4. While I am sent this email to a select group, please feel free to forward it to anyone else you think may be interested or wish to sponsor.  Sponsors may join at any time right up to Easter, however, all sponsorships should cover the total weight lost.

I feel a little nervous about putting this commitment out into the ethernet because my track record with weight loss is not stellar AND because it is way more public than just about anything else I’ve ever done!  But I am also very aware that anything we accomplish together will be more than I would be able to do alone.

If you choose to sign on as a sponsor, please email or comment with your pledge.  If you choose not to, or cannot, pledge please do not feel any pressure or obligation.  However, do feel free no matter what to offer your prayers and support, both are much needed and appreciated.

Thank you for considering this request.