Tuesday, July 31, 2012


It feels great to be home again.

And now...it's time to face the music.  I will be weighing in tomorrow for the first time in two weeks and I'm nervous.  Hopefully the food choices I made during vacation were good ones, but I realize that I have come to rely on that daily weight feedback to keep me on track.

I am fully prepared (emotionally) to see a gain, and have pre-determined that whatever I see on the scale tomorrow, I'm going to get right back into my program and do all the things that work. 

One of the things I realized while I was gone was that I have truly made a lifestyle change.  In years past, I would have used being on vacation as an excuse to eat every fattening thing within reach, and then some.  Even though it was difficult to stay on my program with the challenges of this trip, I never lost my desire to make better choices than I used to.  But I also saw that, while I have made progress, I still have a long way to go.

And that is okay.

It's okay because I know that I am learning to live and eat differently than I did before.  It's okay because I realize I will never "get there" completely, because there will always be challenges and vacations and holidays and special occasions.  It's okay because I know I can always get "back to basics" and keep doing the best I can under whatever circumstances come my way.

I hope this is true learning and changing, and not just me making excuses for being less super-focused on my DIET!  It does feel good, though, to make peace with the process,  I don't know if any of this makes sense, but that's okay too.  I've been in an airplane most of the day!


Monday, July 30, 2012

Food is Good

I love to eat! 

Phase 2 of my Texas trip has been a lot of Eating Out.  Here is a venue where I am more comfortable...lots of choices, and I get to do the choosing!

The other day, my sister and I finished eating a particularly delicious and healthy meal out.  I noticed that I felt light, energized and happy!  This was a sharp contrast to how I feel when I overeat, overindulge, overdo the food.
Used to be, my norm was to (1) promise myself I wasn't going to overeat, (2) proceed to eat everything within reach, (3) immediately regret having eaten too much because I was so stuffed and uncomfortable, and (4) loop back to (1).

But now I am truly enjoying, and looking forward to, that refreshed and energetic feeling I get after eating a light, healthy meal.  There is no denying that eating the Other Stuff is fun.  I'm talking about pizza, donuts, cheeseburgers, nachos, cheesy casseroles, pies, cakes, french fries, cookies, ice cream.  I still do eat these things occasionally.  I am learning, however, to eat them as "treats" and not for "recreation.

I know I have talked about that scripture before, the one that says "All things are permissable, but not all things are beneficial."  My job these days is to explore the freedom of giving myself permission to eat whatever I want, but learning to want to eat what will give me that sweet energetic feeling when I'm done.   This job doesn't stop with what I eat, but extends to all the choices I make in my life.  What would my life be like if I learned to choose those thoughts and actions that would leave me feeling light, energetic and happy afterwards?  It's something to think about!


Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Adventures in Texas

So far, pretty good.

Not great.

We are enjoying a good time with family.  I have had a small amount of control of what I am eating, and am doing the best I can.  Most importantly, I'm tracking every bite and writing down those points.  I have negotiated beef enchiladas, cool whip and jello salads, red velvet cake with ice cream, lasagna,

Tonight was supposed to be my turn to cook.  I was planning grilled chicken and a big salad.  But we just had a family food meeitng and it was decided that we will eat leftovers because there's still so much food from previous meals. 

Oh, well.  This, too, will pass.

Other than the food, I'm enjoying being with family and looking forward to going to stay with my sister day after tomorrow.  I just need to get through these next two days!

One thing that has helped me through these challenges has been listening to sermons from my niece's new church, Grace Covenant in Austin.  He's been doing a series on the fruits of the spirit this summer and I've listened to them all.  I recommend them!  Google the name of the church (and Austin) and click on sermons.  You'll be glad you did.

My mom once told me there are times in your life that you just have to get through.  I feel like this is one of those times for me.  Sometimes I have great insights that I realize and can share, and other times, like now, I'm just surviving today.  It's all part of the journey.  It's all normal.  I know God is still with me, and helping me get through this little desert.


Friday, July 20, 2012

Vacation Eve

And, we're off!

I haven't even left yet and have already hit a few food mines today.  Maybe it's the super-packed schedule trying to get ready to leave.  I don't know.  I only ate a SMALL sliver of the cake at the barbeque...after a hamburger, baked beans and pasta salad!  It was all yummy.  It was all counted. 

The good news is, in the old days I would have eaten several pieces of the cake!  Having just a bite satisfied me, with a few grapes on the side.

My suitcase is packed with protein drinks.  Part of my strategy for this trip is to drink one of those if the meal looks scary, and just have bites of whatever is offered.  That way, I'm getting what I need without hurting anyone's feelings.  Another part of my strategy is to be as active as possible.  We are actually going to spend a day at a famous water park...something I never would have done a year ago!  I can't wait.

This, too, shall pass.  I will get through this vacation one way or t'other.  My not so lofty goal is to maintain my weight where it is, which will be victory enough for now.  I'll let you know how things go....


Tuesday, July 17, 2012

New Beginnings

This Saturday, July 21st, will mark one year since I signed up with Weight Watchers Online last year and began my weight loss journey.

In that year I've lost 60 pounds...an average of 5 pounds a month.   It's not as fast as I had hoped for, but it is a good, healthy rate.

This is the longest I've ever stuck with any kind of diet!  And now, as I'm approaching that one-year mark, I'm floundering a bit.  Bad timing, considering that we're getting ready for that vacation to visit family.  I'm anticipating lots of emotional and physical eating opportunities over the next two weeks!

So, I'm determined to renew my resolve and Begin Again.  One thing is for sure.  The Weight Watchers program works.  "All" I have to do is follow it.  Of course, following it is the hard part.  Because that means I have to retrain 57 years of eating habits.  Progress has been made, but I'm not there yet.  I still want to eat when I'm frustrated, or angry.  I still would rather sit than exercise on many days.

I will probably have to fight these unhealthy urges for the rest of my life.  I am, however, determined to keep doing just that....fighting....because I am literally fighting for my life!  Yes, these past few weeks have been difficult.  But I am learning that if I jut HANG IN THERE things will get better.  I'll have a few good days to counteract the bad ones. 

Judging from this year's Vacation Bible School pictures (which is what got me started on this journey last year!) I'm not as skinny a I thought I was.  But, I am definitely skinnier than I was last year at this time!  Can't wait to see what lessons the coming year will hold for me!

Hugs.  (Can you find me in the picture?)

Friday, July 13, 2012

Honesty is the Best Policy

I was going to title this post "WANTED:  Bridge Over Troubled Waters", which explains the photo.

But then I realized that part of what has been miraculous about my journey so far is that being honest with myself, being honest with you, being honest with God, has been a key factor in my success.

And the honest truth is, I'm in troubled waters!  I could give you a few thousand Very Good Reasons (a.k.a. Excuses) why I'm struggling right now.  Here are just a few:  It's hot.  I'm hungry.  It's really hot.  I'm really busy.  I've been doing this for a almost a year, and I'm bored with the program.  It's too hot to get up and walk.  I'm going on vacation where I'm at the mercy of Other People's Cooking.  It's going to be hot and muggy where I'm going.

But while these VGR's might have some impact on what's going on with me right now, I think the real problem lies elsewhere.  If I am honest with myself, and with you, and with God, I think the real problem has something to do with all the positive attention I've been getting about my weight loss lately. 

This has happened to me before in previous dieting attempts.  As soon as someone "noticed" I was losing weight, I would quit.  The fact that I have made it this far is nothing short of a miracle.  I do not understand this about myself.  I want to be slender and attractive.  But don't tell me I'm looking slender and attractive!  What's up with that?

What I like about today's picture is that the bridge (and I use the term loosely) looks only a little less scary than the troubled water.  That's how I feel.  Like there's a way through all this, but it's "iffy".  All I know is that I need to find a way to navigate these next few weeks of my journey without being swept away by the scary water.  I need to find my footing again.  I need to trust in the One who has been helping me, so I can get over the scary bridge.  I need to sing the song:

When you're weary
Feeling small
When tears are in your eyes
I will dry them all

I'm on your side
When times get rough
And friends just can't be found
Like a bridge over troubled water
I will lay me down
Like a bridge over troubled water
I will lay me down

When you're down and out
When you're on the street
When evening falls so hard
I will comfort you

I'll take your part
When darkness comes
And pain is all around
Like a bridge over troubled water
I will lay me down
Like a bridge over troubled water
I will lay me down

Sail on Silver Girl,
Sail on by
Your time has come to shine
All your dreams are on their way

See how they shine
If you need a friend
I'm sailing right behind
Like a bridge over troubled water
I will ease your mind
Like a bridge over troubled water
I will ease your mind



Sunday, July 8, 2012

Weigh Day - 60 pounds...again!

I forgot to post my weight last week...but I had lost another three pounds!  I was doing so well that I decided to splurge a little at a 4th of July party...and those three pounds came back.  And guess what?  They are still with me.  The party gift that keeps on giving.

What can I say?  60 pounds is still good!  You would think I would learn, however, that deviating from my plan usually doesn't work out in the long run.  Sigh.

Life goes on.  Hugs!

Saturday, July 7, 2012

The Minds of Others....

The other day I talked about getting used to the smaller "me".  I'm realizing, now,  that other people need to get used to the changes, too.

The thing that is happening, that I never expected, is that people are starting to tell me that I don't need to lose that much more weight.  I'm only half-way to my goal! 

At church last Sunday I heard this "you don't need to lose much more" from a couple of people.  It kind of threw me.  There's a danger that I could take their words to heart and quit working on my plan.  So I've been thinking about it.   But I have to realize that they are seeing a big change. I weigh less now than I have in over 20 years. People are used to seeing me really big, and taking off 63 pounds makes a difference in how I look.  Also, I know from my own experiences with friends losing weight in the past, that sometimes their success made me uncomfortable.  It's easier to feel okay about being overweight if you hang around overweight people.  If one of those people starts changing, it can feel a little threatening.

I'm just trying to keep all this in mind as I negotiate this portion of my journey.  I know my friends want the best for me, but some of them may be feeling uncomfortable with the changes they are seeing.  I think God let me go through my own "unfamiliarness" feelings before this came up, so that I could understand that although this is my journey, I'm not in it alone.  The things we do in our lives affect the people around us, for good or ill.  I need to be understanding of my friends as they adjust to the smaller "me", as well as being understanding of myself. 

Bottom line is that I'm not ending the journey here.  But I continue to be amazed at what God is teaching me!  He is amazing!


Sunday, July 1, 2012

Mind Games

It happened again.  I was poolside with a beautiful, trim, healthy woman who refused to put on a bathing suit and get in the water.

In her mind, her body wasn't acceptable for public viewing.  She mentioned that she no longer wears shorts, but always covers herself with long pants and long dresses.

Episodes like this confuse me.  I look at her and see absolutely nothing wrong.  In fact, I look at her and realize that in my wildest dreams I will never be as thin or as pretty as she is.  I truly have a hard time understanding how someone so beautiful can feel so insecure about how they look.

And yet, I try to be sympathetic.  I do understand being uncomfortable with my body.  I do understand feeling unacceptable to the world. 

It makes me feel sad.  It's such a waste.  We miss out on so much of life because we stop ourselves from enjoying things because we're afraid of being judged by others for how we'll look doing those things.  And of course, by "we" I mean "I".  This is the mindset that has governed most of my life!

But mindsets can be changed.  Life can be embraced!  Beauty can be found in the doing, if not always the being.  Maybe this is part of what Jesus meant when He said that He came so that we could have LIFE more ABUNDANTLY.  I believe God wants us to engage in the life that He has given us, in whatever capacity is available to us.  And that engaging, that act of truly living, is where real beauty resides.