Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Feeling Heavy

"If you've ever been fat, you will either be fat for the rest of your life or you will worry about being fat the rest of your life." I came across those words 20 years ago in the play "Fighting International Fat," by Jonathan Reynolds. A pretty obscure place to find the underlying thesis of your waking life, but one doesn't get to choose. That casual observation struck me with the profound power of its obvious truth, much like Kafka's observation, "The meaning of life is that it ends." Kafka did not then add, "...but once you're dead, you won't gain weight." Which I would have found comforting. -- Peter Sagal

I read this in Runner's World Magazine on Saturday (at work, out of boredom) and I haven't been able to stop thinking about it. This is the verbalization of my greatest fear. This will never be completely over, I will be struggling with this my whole life. 
Makes me feel heavy.  

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

A Still Small Voice

I am a very conscious eater... I painstakingly plan out the meals I prepare for my family, I labor over healthy cookbooks and recipes on foodnetwork.com that look simple, healthy and delicious. I chose ingredients diligently at the grocery store or farmers market – often examining 2 or 3 pints of strawberries before I find one with uniform berries of the right shape, scent and ripeness. I keep a variety of healthy snacks on hand, I do my best to buy local and organic when possible. I'm good at these things, I take pride in them. Until I don't.
On a whim, or strategically planned outing where I'll happen to pass by the drive-thru Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf, I'll grab a Large White Chocolate Iced Latte. Conscious thought, yes, conscious eating, no. I unconsciously just consumed 490 calories.
This is why I've chosen to keep a food journal, it forces me to be conscious, present and accountable  for the calories I consume. I'm currently using an ipad application calorie counter which I've nicknamed Jiminy Cricket. It is a very helpful tool, when I utilize it. For the last two weeks I haven't had access to my food journal and you'd think I'd lost my damn mind. I've been eating things I would never eat if I had to write them down – what like if there is no record, it didn't happen? The problem with Jiminy Cricket is that he can only help when he's around to get you out of trouble. I can't use my food journal as a crutch, it has to be what it is... a tool. A tool designed to help me be a more conscious eater. The thing is, when food is your problem, the way it is for me, it is also the solution. It will save me or it will kill me. And I'm not necessarily talking about death in most disastrous of ways (though it will do that too) but I'm saying that feeling bad about myself, feeling fat and undesirable and useless and tired and ugly and lumpy and gross kills me. I'm embarrassed about the way I look and feel and the poor choices I make – consciously or unconsciously. So Jiminy Cricket, you ain't my crutch anymore. I may use you, but I will not rely on you. You are just too damn flaky.

A third generation bag lady's road to healing. Destination, Disneyland. Costume, skinny jeans.

I am a third generation bag lady. That means I love bags. Handbags in
particular, but I don't stop there. Diaper bags, cosmetic cases, Ziplocs, luggage,
wallets, reusable grocery sacks... I have a slight thing for them. But it is
hereditary... hence the third generation part. My mother and her mother before
her all had a thing for bags. My grandmother is still alive - my mother, Deborah, is not.
Hence the healing part.

In high school, a friend of mine cavalierly compared my relationship to my,
then boyfriend, now husband, to a trip to Disneyland. It was... magic, romance
and fantasy. Our relationship is still solid. I love him more now than I ever
have, but we've grown-up together and the magic has been revealed. The romance
is more scheduled and the fantasy has been dampened by voting and paying bills
and raising two babies, punching the time-card, moving a away from home and
chasing the Hollywood dream. We've come to use this term... destination
Disneyland, as our personal coined phrase of what it means to be our best

Skinny jeans aren't really a look I can rock right now. I am overweight. I
have not always been and I plan not always to be. In fact, the juxtapose behind
this whole site launch is my plan to get this under control. I have lost weight
before and actually before I started typing the entry to this blog I have lost 8.8
pounds since the new year but I need this to be it. The time. I need to
examine my life in a way that makes me see why I have let myself get to a point
where I need to lose 65 pounds. And more importantly help me to fashion myself
mind, body and spirit into the thin person I will be when those pounds are gone.
I have a feeling we are going to be very good friends. The good, bad and the
necessarily ugly will come out here.

I am scared and hopeful and ready.