Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Up 40...time for action!

We have an incentive plan at work that seeks to encourage us to be healthy by paying us for taking certain classes or participating in certain activities. One of those activities is a weekly weigh in. I don't usually go...I pretend to have better things to do...(denial ain't just a river in Egypt) but I went today. I weigh 248 pounds. That is precisely 40 pounds more than I weighed at my lowest, which, incidentally was also one of the most stressful times of my life. Another 30 pounds and I'll be back right where I started. That seems unthinkable, but so did 40.

Tomorrow morning I am going to the gym. I have to because I need to make this year of my life different from all the others. I need it to be about action and motivation not sadness and excuses. I am going because I have to start somewhere. I am going even though I don't feel ready because I think I maybe never will. I can't wait until I'm ready to change because change is sucky and uncomfortable and will never feel right at first but it can also be wonderful, especially when I have established in months of whining that what I am doing right now does not work.

Monday, January 30, 2012

I am the captain of my soul

I majored in history in college and took advantage of an accelerated program to earn a master's degree in it as well. However, as my favorite biology professor pointed out on that warm April day when I announced I was switching my major from biology to history, my university only taught, "the history of white people". (This is not the case so much today, but the department still labors under a decided eurocentricity). I loved my program and I tried to round out my world view but I missed a lot. None of my classes really touched Africa and I was too young in the 90s to pay much attention to current events, so I missed the struggles South Africa experienced during that time.

A quiet Friday night with nothing to do but be the proverbial crazy cat lady led me to rent a copy of Invictus. I didn't really know much about Nelson Mandela (indeed I don't know how much about him was fictionalized so I am remedying that by picking up some biographies) but I have to say that I was awestruck by what I did learn. It is unthinkable to me that someone could spend 27 years in prison and come out extolling forgiveness and peace. That, instead of lamenting the time lost, one could unselfishly consider the future of all.

Because I am entirely too self focused, even the story of Nelson Mandela's life makes me think of my own small struggles. I find it so amazing that he could forgive so much so readily but I find it impossible to relinquish the grudges I hold. People have not always been kind to me in my life; some people have hurt me profoundly but the grudge I keep holds the hurt inside for me alone. Those people probably do not know that I harbor the heartache that they caused, and they probably would not care if they did know. That inability to forgive is corroding me from the inside. Worse than my inability to forgive others is my inability to forgive myself.

I feel a great sense of regret when I consider how many years of his life were spent in captivity but it's painful to think of how I squander my freedom. In reality, I can do whatever I want, but I feel utterly imprisoned in a life that I find intolerable. I hate my body and my poor health. I hate my unstable financial situation. I love my friends with all my heart but I hate that they seem not to care much for me. I hate the way I spend my nights, alone in my apartment. I hate the way I am treated at work and that I do not feel my job is a challenge. I hate that I am single though I have tried very hard to meet someone. I hate the rut I have fallen into; the prison my life has begun. I am stuck between feeling I should learn to be satisfied with what I have and thinking that I should bust out of this prison while I can. I know the door is not locked but I can't even seem to find it.

In the meantime, I hope that rambling posts will help me work things out. I only know that something has to change because I have come to feel wildly, desperately unhappy. I know I am the only person who can fix that.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Christmas is Over so What's with the Reference to The Santa Clause

Christmas is long over. My trees been down since December 26, I have purchased my wrapping paper for next year and tucked it away and its been weeks since a Christmas cookie has crossed my lips. It's my favorite time of year but I'm prepared to be done with the season for the next ten months. So why is it then, that everyday, I am reminded of that scene in The Santa Clause where Scott Calvin gets on the scale and the dial continues to tick upward while he's standing on it?!?! I swear, everyday I seem to weigh just a little more and everyday I find a new pair of pants that needs to go into retirement!

What's going on here? I was tempted to say that it's not my fault. I was full of alarm, thinking I had better consult with a physician right away because there was NO WAY I was culpable for this seemingly unstoppable gain. After all, I may not be hitting the gym and living on vegetables but I've abandoned my recent habit of eating Ben & Jerry's while watching Biggest Loser on demand (did I think that was an ironic statement?) so what gives. I decided to examine things a little more closely before calling my doctor and discovered that I'm consuming far too many calories every day. Big shock...excess calories cause weight gain...WOW!

I'm easing back into this thing. I downloaded the Sparkpeople ap for my iPhone and I am tracking my food now. More discussion to follow but first I have to do something about this angry red ring my pants have cut into my stomach.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

My Reappearance

I have disappeared. That's evident to anyone who has checked the date on my most recent blog post, a whiny, self-indulgent complaint fest dedicated to Valentine's induced self-pity. But I've disappeared in more ways than that. I've dropped out of my life, fallen away from my goals and my interests and stepped outside of myself and into a shadowy apathy.

I have begun to understand why. I have allowed anguish to wash over me and to pull me out of the world. I have struggled with a desperation and longing that made anything else in my life seem banal. I couldn't begin to remember why I had ever cared about weight loss, my education or anything outside of my all encompassing obsession with an imperfect idol. I am only guilty of wanting something I could never have and being unable to let go of that desire. I feel like a ghost today. I have become so different from the woman who went for what she wanted and believed in her power to better her circumstances. She has dissolved in the useless tears she has shed.

Now that those tears have dried, I believe that they have left behind some trace of her that I can gradually gather and reform. I'm so tired of crying. I'm not that person or at least I never used to be. I'm ashamed that I seem to have been waiting to be fixed with the magical belief that if my one supreme prayer should be answered, everything else would fall into place. Nonsense.

I needed a wake up call. And I got it from an unexpected source...my bank. Or at least my former bank. I recently changed banks. I switched my direct deposit but never closed the old account. Apparently, my Paypal was still attached and Weight Watchers was still deducting because they didn't get the memo that I was too full of self pity to follow the program. Naturally, I received a notification when the charge bounced back and suddenly remembered who I used to be and who I still hope to become. It's true that there are things in my life that will never be the way I want them to be, people who will just never be there and things I can't have. There isn't much of which I am actually in control. However, I am in control of the decisions that I make about my body. I am ready to reclaim that power.

Thank you to everyone who has checked in with me. It means a lot that people have cared even when I found it hard to myself. You people rock my socks. Truly.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Single's Awareness Day

It's finally happened. I've finally succumbed to the stereotype. I'm 28; I'm single; I'm embittered. I'm not proud of this reality but I'm starting to feel a little like the Grinch looking down from Mount Krumpit observing and helping my friends make their Valentine's plans but not having any of my own.

It grates against my feminist sensibilities to define my value in terms of my ability to find a man to love me. Similarly, I do not feel like I should feel diminished by my inability to do so. However, I get just a little touchy about it this time of year. It doesn't help that, last week, my professor in my Couple's Therapy course asked all of the people who were part of a couple to identify themselves. An island in a sea of raised hands, it was hard not to feel a little like a pariah and I went to bed wondering, "why not me?"

To make matters worse, this was the first year that I legitimately believed that I might not be alone on V-day! I've been doing the online dating thing and have met some real pervs, but I actually founds someone I really liked. He was kind, dedicated to his teaching career and super smart. We sent long, honest and deeply felt emails to each other every other day for three weeks. As silly as it sounds, I was starting to fall for the man that emerged from those communications. To my surprise, he seemed to reciprocate my feelings. I was delighted to meet him and had an amazing time on our date. I guess he didn't have a good time, though. I was crushed and consequently, I am feeling crabby about romance.

So how do I tie my whining into a blog post? I am trying my hardest not to eat my despair. It has always been a habit of mine to eat when things look grim but at a time when my self-esteem is at an all-time low, stuffing my face will only make me feel more disgusted with life. It's OK to feel like shit when life isn't going the way I planned but it's foolish to make things worse but indulging in an unhealthy pattern. Obviously, I can't choose what happens to me, but I can chose how I react to it.

So how will I react? I have no plans tonight. The rest of the world does. So I am going to the gym. I am making myself a healthy dinner and I am renting a movie. I will do my very best to have a Happy SAD!


Thursday, August 13, 2009

Moving in the Right Direction

Progress this week was slower than I would have liked. I lost a half a pound, which brought me down to 226.0. At least I'm moving in the right direction.

At first, I blamed my cousins wedding on Saturday for the slow down. But honestly, just how evil is one slice of wedding cake. I didn't have any alcohol and I ate sensibly at dinner. I went back and reviewed my food journal and found that I had eaten much more than I should have almost every day last week. I didn't binge like I used to in days of old. Just knowing I have to write my food down prevents that, but I wasn't as controlled as I would have liked.

So I'm shaking things up a little. I'm making it my policy to only eat something after I've written it down. This will force me to see the numbers and make a more informed choice.

Life is good. The weight is coming off. I just need to tweak my approach.