Saturday, June 02, 2012
If you're a woman - "pretty" might have loaded meanings.
Is it the trappings of trying to fit into a patriarchal society? Is it vanity? Is it the stereotype of femininity? Is it trying to keep a deathgrip on youth in a society obsessed with youth?
When I was young, I loved all things makeup and beauty. Adored it, enjoyed it, I liked using cosmetics, playing with my hair, etc.
Then I came out as lesbian, and the very first lesbian friend I made had very different views. She felt using makeup and fussing with your hair was only for women trying to attract men's attention. She suggested I cut my hair, stop using makeup etc.
I tried, but that didn't last LOL.
Today, I'm back to the makeup and long hair I love.
Except, sometimes, I don't feel pretty. Yes, yes, beauty comes from within. Blah blah blah.
As a woman pushing 50...my life is changing. My kids are growing up, 2 of the 4 are adults living their own lives away from me. The teens left in the house enjoy poking fun at how old I am (Civil war and dinosaur jokes, etc).
This week as I've looked in the mirror, I see aging. My hair desperately needs to be colored - the gray roots blink like strobe lights under the fluorescent lights in the restrooms at my work. The fine lines - from laughter and worry - are clearly visible to me.
I've not felt pretty lately. The beginnings of menopause are changing my skin, and I often wonder "who is that?" when I look in the mirror. My face is no longer young and taut...but softer.
My weight doesn't help things.
I'm not a vain person. I don't base my self worth on my appearance, usually anyway. I'm living my life as fully as possible - today. Wrinkles, weight, graying hair, and all.
I wondered this a.m., what would make me feel pretty? Well, my nail polish is a few specks on some fingers...I could re do that. I could make the time to get my hair cut so that I could color it and not have my eye drawn to the gray every time I see a mirror. I could make sure that clothes I feel good in are clean and pressed and ready for next week.
Love myself as I am? Well, that's been a lifelong project and it's not over yet.
Thanks for sticking through to the end of my thinking out loud on being "pretty". Tell me, if you lasted through the whole thing, what makes you feel pretty? If you're a guy, you can tell me what makes you feel good about your appearance. Or what makes you feel pretty if you're that kind of guy, too. :)
Monday, May 28, 2012
I post this because I want other large women to know, YES you can too bellydance!
I've been working on the costume, and this was a run through to help me see what else needs to happen with it before the second week in June. The dance? I had a hard time remembering the choreo, LOL. I can see myself thinking thinking thinking....
Is this my best ever performance? Nope. But here it is anyway. If you are obese, or you are over 40, or you have some reason that you are NOT doing the things you dream of.....do it anyway. Life is short. Just do it.
Friday, May 25, 2012
Yesterday was a successful day as far as the "Just for today" goals I made for myself.
I am still in a learning curve as far as getting my carbs to around 40% of my calories and my protein to around 30%. I could look at yesterday, where carbs were 50% and protein was 18% and say "I blew it again"...and there have been many times when perfectionism certainly took me there. Today, after running the report for yesterday, my very first (perfectionism) thought was 'wow that's way off :('. No, it's not. It's off, but way off? No.
That's the problem with perfectionism, it takes the perspective out of your vision - you see everything as worse (or better) than it really is.
So, today, the goals are the same. I've examined what I ate yesterday, and identified something I could change to lower those carbs and I have plenty of low-fat options for raising the protein bar.
Just for today. I won't worry about the weekend, or next week, I will only worry about TODAY.
Thursday, May 24, 2012
Just for today, I will eat 6 small meals
Just for today, I will take my meds/supplements
Just for today, I will increase the amount of water I drink from little to more
Just for today, I will stop beating myself up about how much I weigh
Just for today, I will carefully balance my protein/carb/fat ratio to assist my body's proper insulin response
Just for today, I will dance until I sweat
I can do these things today. When I look at the lifestyle changes for a lifetime, I often do "just for today" backwards - I have the cookie or other wheat item that makes me feel bad and revs my blood sugar. I sit instead of dance. I live in shame because I'm not "strong" enough. All I have is today, and today, I choose to do my list above, because all I have to do it for is.....today.
Wednesday, May 23, 2012
So, a couple days after my doctor appointment where he suggested a workup by an endocrinologist, he called back after reviewing labs done with my previous doctor. His first question was "So, what was Dr. V doing for your polycystic ovarian syndrome?"
I said, my what? I don't think I have that....and he said, "your labs in 2010 and 2011 look pretty clear to me (insert his repeating a bunch of stuff I don't even remember or understand) which look like a clear indication of PCOS to me." I asked, well what would we do about that?
and he said, "Send you to an endocrinologist - it's managed by taking care of your insulin resistance mostly, but it is a really sound reason for why you work so hard and lose no weight."
Huh. Who knew? So, I've done a bit of reading both here on spark and on the web and symptom wise, yep that could be me alright. Especially the stories here on spark where women talk about working out like a madwoman - some training for intense marathons/triathalons - and not losing a pound for weeks or months.
Diet-wise, it looks like the same thing I'm doing now - keeping the carbs down, avoiding "white food" (flour sugar potato). Lots of women are started on metformin or another diabetic type oral medication - with varying results.
Nothing to lose by seeing that endocrinologist, so I'll do it. Can I just say, there is a tiny bit of justification here? Many times I've seen various providers or people at Weight Watchers or the supervised fast thing I did, and I could tell they didn't believe me about how much I ate/exercised. I could see it on their faces that they thought either I was binging and not telling, or I wasn't being as careful as I thought I was - because, why else when I'm doing everything right I can't lose any weight? I must not be doing it "right".
So, this is a little vindication.
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