Thursday, November 29, 2012

Change - Again.

I had an "aha" moment today.

Weight loss isn't something you do.  It's something that happens when you change the way you live.

This, I believe, is why diets don't work.  A diet is something you do.  It has an end.  You reach your goal and you're finished.  You go back to what you used to do.

But changing your life--that's hard!  How do I truly find a new path, one that leads to fitness and a normal weight body? 

The only way I know how to change my life is to change my mind.  The problem is, the mind I have is the one I have trained over fifty-plus years to go coo-coo for cocoa puffs (metaphysically speaking.)  I am encouraged, however, that I'm less anxious about food and eating than I was this time last year.  That indicates that I'm changing, right?

I know that I keep revisiting this subject.  Change.  Resistance to change.  Looking for a new equilibrium.  I think it's wrapped up in my last "aha" moment about all the things in life we have to do over and over again.  Changing is just another one of those things you keep doing every day.  And then every once in a while you notice you've lost another pound.  At least, I hope that is how it works.


Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Never Ending

I absolutely love the change of seasons!

I especially love Fall and the beautiful leaves we get to see at this time of year.  Except when they are on my driveway.

So this morning I decided to do some physical activity by sweeping the leaves off my driveway.  My favorite way to do "exercise" is to do something that actually accomplishes a task.  Like walking to the mailbox (which in my neighborhood is a pretty good hike.)  Or, sweeping leaves!

So there I was.  Enjoying the crisp, cool, morning air.  Sweeping.  Greeting passing neighbors with a cheerful, "Hello!"  I had just gotten half the driveway cleared off, when the crisp, cool, morning air turned into a crisp, cool, morning breeze.  In three seconds, the driveway was covered again.

Isn't this just the way life is?  You think you've accomplished something and WHOOOSH!  A crisp, cool, morning breeze blows through your life and messes everything up.  There is just an every-dayness about life that we can't get around.  That's why I can never get the laundry done.  And just as soon as I get one project finished, there seem to be twenty more waiting in the wings for me to tackle.

I think this is a concept that I have always fought.  I have resented that I could never "arrive". I am always trying to get things DONE.  I have resented that I couldn't just wake up in the morning and be magically thin.  But today, something about that WHOOSH across the driveway made me smile.  Maybe the secret to enjoying life is simply in the living of it...every day.  Doing things over and over again. That includes eating right, exercising, cleaning the house, doing laundry...over and over again.  Day in and day out.  If I can find a way to do that with a smile, I think I'll be ahead of the game.


(Rest in Peace, Zig Ziglar, who passed away this morning.)

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Feeling Strong Now

One of my biggest struggles in the past year and half in my weight loss journey has been being HUNGRY. 

Hunger is a fierce motivator.  It motivates you to EAT!  After eating my Bistro MD food for the past week, I'm here to tell you I have not been hungry in that "feed me right now or I'm gonna hurt somebody" kind of way.  The hunger I have experienced over these days has been more like, "Oh.  I'm feeling a little empty.  Maybe I should grab a yogurt."

I'm feeling strong.  I'm...satisfied.  I must come to the conclusion that eating this way is giving my body the nutrition it needs.  I think ... maybe ... I've been spending too many of my WW points on empty foods--foods that don't nourish my body.  Maybe that's why I've been so hungry and why I haven't lost weight for a while.

The Bistro MD food is pretty good and I'm enjoying the convenience.  I am really enjoying feeling hopeful to see the weight loss begin again!  Even with enjoying myself (reasonably) on Thanksgiving, it looks like I've lost a pound a half this week.  Of course, this is weight that I had previously gained, but at least I'm going in the right direction now.

Here's to good nutrition!  It really works! (duh)

Hugs. ;-)

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Doing My Own Thing

My friend, Deb, is an artist.

This is one of her beautiful watercolors.  If you've ever tried to paint with watercolors, you can really appreciate how amazing it is that she could create such a beautiful piece! 

This is something I could not do.  Painting is not my thing.  Some days (most days, really) I'm not sure what my "thing" is!  I just seem to fumble along, trying to get from this day to the next.

I have been noticing, however, that through this journey I've been on I've been learning to be more...focused.  I'm feeling less anxious about my place in the world, and whether or not I fit in.

A big part of this metamorphosis has to do with my friends.  God has gifted me with a wonderful sister who is my friend, delightful friends at church, and my fantastic Weight Watchers buddies!  There is so much power in feeling accepted!  What a great gift I have received from all these loving people!  A lot of my life, as you know, I have felt unaccepted and unacceptable.  That is definitely changing.

The real gift is in realizing that I was not put on this earth to do anyone else's "thing".  God created me (and you!) to do something special, and those special things are different for each of us.  I can appreciate Deb's gift of artistry without being jealous of her, because I know that if I do my own "thing" I can bring similar joy to the lives of other people.  And that's a good thing!

This has nothing to do with losing weight directly, but everything to do with losing the weight of long held fears and expectations I put on myself in the past.  I felt frustrated and alone because I didn't fit in, and my excess body weight only emphasized those feelings of isolation.  This journey is not just about getting rid of that excess body weight.  It is also about learning to embrace the gifts God has given to me, and then opening my arms to share His gifts with the world.


Monday, November 19, 2012

Day One of "Diet Intervention"

Saturday, we received two very big boxes of frozen foods from Bistro MD - one for my husband, and one for me.

We're doing the "Five Days a Week without Snacks" plan.  That gives me Tuesdays to chow down (in a healthy way) with my WW buds, and Sundays.  Of course, this week is the whole Thanksgiving thing, but I'll figure that out when I get there.

Anyway, we started this morning.  I'm excited.  This past week, after my dismal showing at my Tuesday weigh-in at WW, and knowing that the Bistro MD food was coming, I quit tracking my food.  I didn't pig out, mind you, but did allow myself to eat a few things that I knew I'd be avoiding in the coming weeks.  Nothing crazy.  So this morning when I stepped on my own scales for the first time in a week, I was prepared to see a little bit of an increase.

Imagine my surprise when I saw I lost 1.4 pounds!  I'm taking this as a good sign for what's to come.  The next six weeks will be like a little weight loss adventure.  After Christmas, I'll review what's going on and decide where to go from there.

It's a funny thing about intervention.  Sometimes, it's welcome.  I'm glad to know that five of my days each week will be very structured.  For a season, I will be free from the stress of wondering what I'm going to eat next.  Don't worry--I'm counting my points!  In fact, I've already put in the points for today's three meals (since I know what they are) and found that I have four points left over for snacks.  With fruit and vegetables being free, four points is plenty to get through the day.

So.  I'm ready.  I'm determined.  I'm optimistic!


Friday, November 16, 2012

Taking Stock

I haven't lost any weight for a long time.  But today, as I put on my size 14 jeans, I remembered that when I started this journey I wore size 22.  I'm not where I want to be, but I'm certainly not where I was.  Today is just a little pictoral trip down memory lane.  These are not particularly in order.  Hugs.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Who Cares?

Vicki asked me a very good question after our Weight Watchers meeting yesterday.
She wanted to know (after reading my last few blog posts) why I care so much about what other people think of me and my weight.
It’s true.  I care.  I care what everyone thinks.  I care what you think.
As a matter of fact, I got my first negative comment a couple of days ago on this blog.  Someone, anonymously, called me a Loser, and not in the positive sense of being a weight loser.  I deleted the comment, but it hurt.  It was probably from some random person reading my blog who I don’t even know.  But it still hurt.
Then I realized, this kind of negative reaction to me, my ideas and my physical appearance, is what I expect from people.  It goes back to that “not being good enough” thing.  Vicki’s question floated over me like superimposed words hanging in the air:  Why do I care?
Today I’m contemplating the possibility of living a life that is unencumbered by caring what other people think.   I need to care what I think.  And I need to care about whether the life I’m living is one that is pleasing to God.
I need to realize that I can care about you, and not let myself be limited by whether or not you approve of me.  I still care what you think of me.  I want you to like me and what I write.  But if you don’t, I need to be able to let that go and keep being the person I am supposed to be.
The hardest thing about putting my true feelings and insecurities “out there”is knowing that someone can take that offering and call me a Loser.  So be it.  It’s worth the risk.


Monday, November 12, 2012

Drastic Measures

I have to be honest with you guys.  After all, that's why I started this blog!  I am not doing well with my diet.  I don't know if it was the surgery, or the medication, or the setback in not being able to exercise.  All I know is that I'm not doing well.  I have gained four pounds.  Four pounds! 

So here is what I am going to do.  As soon as I finish writing this post, I am going to the BistroMD website.  It's home delivery calorie-controlled meals.  For five days a week, I'm going to eat BistroMD food, giving me two days a week to try to eat properly on my own.

I am not beating myself up about this!  As a matter of fact, I'm pretty proud of what I have accomplished so far.  But, by the same token, I know myself.  And I am in....actually have been in....very dangerous territory.  I'm tired of counting points and no amount of pep talking to myself has been able to convince me that I still want to do that right now.  At least with prepared meals, I know I will be getting good, balanced nutrition.

The plan is to stay on this program through Christmas and then take another look at what is going on.

Maybe I've been enjoying cooking too much!  Wish me luck.


Thursday, November 8, 2012


I'm becoming.

I don't mean that I am particularly attractive (although I am quite a bit cuter than I used to be!)

It occurs to me that calling someone becoming is a compliment.  But what is "becoming", really?  One definition is "attractive", but another is "moving from one state of being to another."

If you follow the logic of the transitive property of math, then the act of "becoming" is, by definition, attractive!

Okay, maybe I'm stretching a little bit here.  But think about it.  Positive change IS attractive!  In many ways, I AM becoming!  I am becoming healthier.  I am becoming more capable of overcoming old, destructive eating cues.  I am becoming more active.  I am also becoming a little bit bi-lingual (I listen to Spanish instruction CD's in the car.)  And, I am becoming a person who cooks!

The other thing I like about the idea of "becoming" is that it is not a destination.  It is a state of being.  It's like this weight loss thing.  The choices I make each day are taking me to a different kind of life.  I will never "arrive", really, because even when I reach my weight goal the journey will not be over.  In order to stay there I will have to continue to carry out the lessons I have learned along the way, as well as learning new lessons about maintaining a healthy weight.  I will have to continue "becoming" in order to stay healthy.

We are all becoming!  That, my friends, is very attractive.


Friday, November 2, 2012

What am I so afraid of?

I've been thinking about why I don't want to step out on that rickety bridge.

This is hard to write about.  The bottom line is, I'm afraid that I will become thin and attractive...and that it still won't be enough.  I still won't be good enough.

If I fail and I'm fat, I can blame my failure on being fat.  I can say things like, people don't take me seriously because I'm fat.  But if I am thin, and people don't take me seriously, then what?  Then that must mean there is something fundamentally wrong with me.  With who I am.

I'm not saying this fear is rational.  It comes from years of hurt and rejection that isn't worth going into here.  The ultimate fear is that all those people who hurt and rejected me were right.  That I am really not good enough.

But what if all those people were wrong?  What if the hurt and rejection we feel from other people is more about them that it is about us? What if the reason I can't get over my past pain is that I need to forgive them for how they made me feel?  What if I am good enough...we are all good enough...just the way we are...warts and all?  What if it's okay for me to get thin and still not be good enough for some people?

I love this quote from Churchill.  The success or failure of my journey is not what matters.  What matters is having the courage to step out onto the bridge.  To keep going.  To dare to succeed and let other people think what they will.  To try to understand and forgive them.  To try to understand and forgive myself.


Thursday, November 1, 2012

What am I doing?

People do what they want to do.

At least, that's what my mother once said to me when I chose to do something other than come home from college for my Dad's birthday celebration.

It's a statement I have pondered over oh these many years.  I argue with it.  I tell myself, I don't always get to do what I WANT to do.  There are things I HAVE to do...where I don't have a choice.

But, ultimately, I think she was right.  I choose to do the things I don't want to do because I don't want the negative consequences that happen if I don't do those things.  So, technically, I'm doing what I want to do, even if I don't want to do it.

Yeah, I know.  It's confusing.  But let's assume for a moment that the statement is true.  People do what they want to do.  To personalize it and take responsibility for it...I do what I want to do.  So, if that's true, and I'm not losing weight right now, it must be because that's what I want.  I must want to treat myself here and have a little extra there.  I'm starting to understand that right now, I want to stay where I am, weight-wise.  I don't want to gain, but I don't want to lose either.  I want a break from the relentless pursuit for the next two-tenths of a pound weight loss.

Part of this wanting to stay where I am comes from that part of me that rebels against my worth being attached to my weight, or in this case, my weight loss.  I love that I feel better, look better, and that people compliment me on the accomplishment.  But at the same time, I wish we could talk about something else.  Being in the weight loss limelight (pardon the pun) wears thin sometimes.  I just want to be about more than my size.  It all gets confusing for me.

I'm sharing my confusion because I believe that all of us on this journey are struggling with this "doing what we want to do" question, even if we haven't thought about it in those terms.  It's like, there's this mental bridge we have get across to make it to the land of the normal weight people.  I'm standing at one end, afraid to step out over the abyss below the rickety rails.  My knees are weak.  Right now it feels safe to stay where I am.  For a while.  That's what I want to do.