Friday, July 02, 2010
I know that many folks who follow along are in my age range and totally understand this, but in case you haven't been around this block a few times, let me clue you in: just because your body size has changed doesn't mean the image you hold of yourself, in your mind... has accepted it!
One of the reasons I keep taking photos is so I can look at them and say, "Yes, this is me". If you look at the "before" pictures, that's also me. My body size has varied so much over the years that at times I'm not sure which one is really me. In truth, they all are. I'm the one that some people have recently told "You're getting too thin, you might blow away" (change back message), and I'm also the one that they avoided saying anything to because she was so fat, to avoid hurting my feelings. I'm also the one in the middle, on her way up or down.
"You are more than your body". That is so true, body, mind, soul... all is part of identity. I was raised with the concept to "take no thought for your body". I now know and accept that I am a compulsive eater with behaviors that date back to childhood. This has directly resulted in the large body size that has returned multiple times throughout my life.
Compulsive eating can go both ways... it can be compulsive UNDER-eating, too. Once a certain amount of weight is off, and one starts wearing more flattering clothing, the comments come in, and the brain goes in differing directions, depending on your particular compulsion... either restricting continues, and the compulsion takes on THAT flavor... or the little devil voice tries to convince you that you can have ANYTHING you want because you're "cured".
For recovery from compulsion, there has to be something else, that is neither of these. In 12 step programs it's a concept called abstinence. If you don't buy into the whole compulsive eater thing, the word is "maintenance".
A big part of the whole thing is accepting myself whatever my size. It's about being "comfortable in my own skin"... loose or taut! Inside my skin = mine to deal with. Outside the skin = I have no control.
Going into this Independence Day weekend, my hope is to accept me as I am at the moment... to be comfortable with the size I am now.
Thursday, July 01, 2010
It's about to be a holiday weekend, and that usually means seeing family. On Saturday I'll be sharing a meal prepared by my daughter in law, who has started to follow the Mediterranean diet.
She tells me that she needs to have some kind of program to follow, she doesn't do well left to her own devices. I get that. This is the third such program she's followed... on the previous two, I went along with her: South Beach, and more recently Jenny Craig. My own philosophy is that the program doesn't much matter, as long as it supports balanced nutrition and exercise. If a shiny new program helps you stay motivated and take care of your health, go for it.
Most important I really, really get that everybody has to learn and grow in their own way and at their own pace. Family connections sometimes make it harder to share what we've learned, as the relationship and individuality get in the way. Sometimes it's easier to learn from a book, or a friend, rather than a family member.
I'm kind of looking forward to it, and kind of dreading it at the same time. The perfectionist in me worries about both the relationship and my own healthy eating program.
Relationship: "will she be offended if I don't care for what she prepares?" Food: "But what if it's something I really don't like?" So... watch the portion size, try to be polite, but not stiff. But more important: "Will she think I'm judging her own efforts at weight loss if I don't like the food." I know, I know, I'm warped.
I'm still feeling my way around my relationship with my daughter in law, and particularly where healthy habits are concerned. She's a fellow traveler. And that can mean sensitive. You know how the most critical anti-smoking people are former smokers? Well, sometimes I think the most critical feelings we take on are from former "fatties". You know what I mean? The big problem? When I go on these programs with her, I generally end up getting to my goal faster and staying there longer. Right now, I'm at goal and maintaining.
Some of this is leftovers from my relationship with my own mother, who seemed threatened when I lost weight... afraid I would want to push my new habits and values on her. Being a people pleaser... that came back to me, internally as a "change back" message. Internally, it can get morphed into a "why try?", a "she won't love me anymore", etc. Mom's gone now, but this echo remains in how I respond to the comments of others when they notice my weight loss. And I don't want to do that to someone else. Yes, I am projecting, psych majors among you.
Deep breath... Serenity prayer time: Inside my own skin, mine. Someone else's internals... I can't control. So, do my best, be genuine, and focus on loving the people. Beyond that... it's in the hands of a power greater than me!
I'll let you know how it went.
Wednesday, June 30, 2010
I may have shared (because I share a lot) that my food group challenge is fruit. I love my veggies, but getting the recommended 5 servings of fruit to go with my 5 plus veggies every day (my maintenance plan)... a stretch.
Well, last Sunday, the fruit staged a takeover of my fridge.
You see, there is this guy in our area who works with the Texas growers. Every year he sells door-to-door in our neighborhood twice. Once around about now with grapefruits and oranges, and again in the autumn with apples. He's been coming around for several years. He rings your doorbell and hands you a slice of his wares, that he cuts right on your porch step.
Of course it's the best fruit ever! Fresh, hasn't made it through the grocery, straight from the trees to you. Except that he sells it in crates! And there's only ONE of me! So each year, while raving over the quality of the fruit, I explain that I couldn't possibly eat what he sells before it spoils. Even though he says it will last 8 weeks without refrigeration. And that's the end of it, until my sample on his next trip.
This year, he caught me as I was ready for my Sunday afternoon snack, and it was the juiciest citrus fruit. And he said he would sell a mixed half crate. And I succumbed to the temptation. As you can see, my fridge has been taken over. And there was a lot more that didn't fit, and I gave away to my sisters and to people at work. But I think, at least for a few weeks, I'm going to have no problem getting in those five fruits.
Tuesday, June 29, 2010
Walter Mitty's got nothing on me... this famed phrase/word/sound came popping into my musings yesterday morning as I got out of my car in the garage at work. I had my car keys in my hand and was about to shove them into my pocket when something came through my thick head.
Was it vanity? Maybe... .
See, I refuse to purchase pants without pockets. I love pockets. They are so convenient. You can stuff tissues in them (for us allergy sufferers), or keys for easy access, or change, a note to yourself, the cell phone or pda... whatever. I've always considered it the height of foolishness to not have them in your clothing just because you happen to be a female. What self-respecting man would buy trousers without pockets?
Without pockets, you're forced to carry bags! Bags have to be watched over and remembered. And I admit, like Walter Mitty, to being absent-minded... I'm too busy thinking about other things to think about what I need to carry along with me. Pockets are the perfect thing!
But... yesterday morning I stopped in my tracks when I saw... the bulge the keys were making in the line of my "look". Now, back when I weighed 224 pounds, or even when I was in the 190's... what was one more bulge? Now, with my shrunken frame, the bulge looked larger... and more awkward... and I kind of LIKED the way I looked in the mirror that morning.
So, the keys went into the purse. Vanity. Sigh. But also a "giggle point".
Monday, June 28, 2010
You have to be able to laugh at yourself... or at least laugh at the process.
Yesterday was a gorgeous day here. It wasn't as beastly humid as it has been, and there was a light breeze. I opted to take my training outdoors, at a nearby lake (background photo shows it). I fully intended to take pictures, so I loaded up the fanny pack with the camera, the cell phone (I have old technology, people), and my driver's license and drove down and parked.
Being conscious of hydration issues, I also took my stainless steel water bottle. And I was geared up in my favorite fitness wear, from head to toe. I was psyched... this would be my first outdoor attempt at some good interval training, I mean geared up to do so. Yes, I had done some informal breaking into a jog while walking the dog, but that was different... I was going to jog, snap some photos, walk recovery phase... you know the drill.
Only... the last time I wore this fanny pack? It was the ice skating episode early in the year. I seem to fuzzily remember NOW that it was on the loose side then. I snugged it up to as skinny as the strap would allow then. And I was wearing it over top of jeans and sweatshirt then.
So... I start my walk to warm up. I snap a few shots to make the blog interesting.
See where the path goes? Yep, under water. We've had a bit of rain around here lately. Detour around the flooded spots on the path. I didn't break into a jog until I got up to the top of the dam. And then the fun with the fanny pack began... you saw it coming two paragraphs ago. It's no longer a fanny pack. It slipped, it slid, it was off balance, and I was afraid it was going to knock the pedometer off, or worse, pull down my knickers as it slid over my "missing in action" hips.
Oops. So, no more jogging. Rest of walk around the lake was an adventure in experimentation. Part of it was "fanny pack worn above the boobs"... I DO still have a chest. Not very comfy, but it did allow some short interval jogging time.
Next time, I'll be better prepared. Guess it's not just clothing you shrink out of.
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