Tiny, Little Miracles

Sometimes a day can be summed up in tiny miracles.

Kind of like counting One Thousand Gifts, and the gift is gratitude for the capability of simply hanging on.

There are times when I have felt so desperate. I wasn't sure if I could make it through the day, and would have visions of running my car off the road. I think when I was at my heaviest, I was completely overloaded, physically and mentally. I ate to fill me up, but I was hollow with no bottom, in many ways.

That person isn't really gone. I've worked and struggled to win my mind battles. Sometimes --most of the time-- it works. I win. I'm still here. I'm fighting the fight. But there are days, and sometimes those days span into weeks - or months.

I was there not too long ago, sitting in (yet another) psychiatrist's office, giving The Background, wondering what he will make of me, at least the me that I show him. He prescribed a pill, I said I'd think about it.

I haven't filled it yet.

I don't plan to, honestly. But it's in my back pocket of arsenal, should I need.

When you're in a cloud like that and it is dark, it's hard to see life without that filter. Quite honestly, I'm not sure that filter is ever completely removed from my eyes. Maybe for moments, those times when I feel complete joy and presence of God. It's rare, but it happens. Many times I see pain, deception, twists and ruts in the world and in people. In myself, mostly.

As I went about today, overwhelmed in a way that, on many other days would completely overwhelm me, I thought small.

I put lotion on today.
I did my hair.
I... showered.
I put in three loads of laundry.
Answered emails.
Ate in.
Did a short workout.
Put away my clean clothes.
Ran downstairs to grab a bottle of tea.

Little, minute things. I am thankful, and appreciate that I did them all. There are days when I don't do any of those things.

I'm lazy, tired, fatigued to the bone, unappreciative, filling my face, not caring if I can afford lunch out and grabbing it anyway, waiting for someone else to put my clothes away, too lazy to run a flight of stairs for something I want.

Every now and then I take a day where I don't do much and just enjoy being "off" for the day. I'm not talking about those days. I'm talking about the days where the filter is so heavy that nothing appeals, nothing matters much, and everything was specifically calculated to irritate me. Those are not good days.

For the here, right now, I am very thankful for the tiny, little miracles that fill my time.

Yeah, I Was A Runner... For A Minute

I hate to even put this out there - but I feel GREAT.

I suspect the honeymoon won't last forever. But I'm hoping it will.

We went to a movie, I had to walk all the way to the top, up the stairs, in front of everyone. Piece of cake. No worries. Back down, back up. No problem.

Yesterday we were at a big sporting event. Last year this time, I didn't like walking in front of everyone through the gym. Yesterday - who cares!? I was fine.

It is amazing what feeling (better) in your own skin can do for you. I want to continue to reinforce that. I know that I felt better at 260-anything than I did at 290-anything. That should be a no-brainer.

It is a constant day to day struggle, an effort, to always be watching (meticulously) what I'm eating. I will not lie. But it'st he only thing that has worked for me. The only thing. 

A few days ago I went for a walk with my son and husband. I have short legs that take small steps. Anytime I walk with my husband or sons, I take two steps for their one. I've accepted this as normal. My son, though, is a teenager and he's not as compassionate to my disability as my husband, so he doesn't even notice that I'm practically dying while he's happily jaunting along.

We're walking, it's dark, and I get this insatiable desire... need to run. I felt like my body just needed to DO IT. So I did. Not anything graceful and pretty like those twiggy runners you see floating along the sides of the road. No, more like the old men who shuffle-run down the street and you wonder if they are indeed dying instead of running.

I shuffle-ran.

And I liked it. As I shuffled, I said, "I'm a runner." I received a funny look from my husband. "I am. I'm a runner. I've seen plenty of people in their runner gear, going around town doing this. I'm running, see? See?"

You know what my husband said?

"It's a start."

Interesting. I fully expected him to kind of laugh at me, but he encouraged me. I don't know if I could have kept it up for the full 20 minutes that I normally walk, but I kept it up for 5 of them. I tried to pick up the pace for a bit, but then I got that belly-flap sound that I was talking about yesterday and I stopped. Enough of that.

I haven't really been exercising much the last couple of weeks. I've been trying to keep busy, keep off my butt more, but not really pushing it yet. I will. Just not yet. Maybe a shuffle-run here and there.

Saggy Skin Is My Scar

I was visiting Escape from Obesity, as I do from time to time (I don't have time to read many blogs - I wish I could). I read a post, then read the comments. Then re-read the comments, then responded to the comments, then added an addendum to my response. Most frighteningly, to myself, I went back to read through the comments, hoping there were more.

And there were.

The comments were on the post, What Happened To Me. They are both worth a read.

I have to admit the whole saggy skin issue bothers me.
Scares me, maybe a little.

I have issues with it.

And I have some of it already.

Even though I've hovered under 300 for years now, I was over 300. Almost 340, to be exact. The loss of the 40 pounds left me with some skin on my inner thighs. It never bothers me, unless I take a hard look at it when I'm naked. I only do that when I feel like bothering myself about it.

I look at it, and I think two things. I think it looks grouse. I think it will never look good or normal. Ever, ever, ever. And then there's a little part in my head that is kind of proud of it like, dang - I've lost so much weight I've got some saggy skin.

Liken it to a battle wound, a scar, perhaps. My saggy skin is my scar. Like a soldier come home from battle, escaped with not major wounds, happy to be home, a scar the only outward sign of where he has been. My scar.

Not as romantic, surely. And, depending on how much I lose, probably not very sightly. But it's almost like a loose piece of clothing (if I let my head thing nicely about it).

My arms, saggy.

Belly, saggy.

Some of this is age and bad skin. But a great part of it is the expansion and deflation that has happened to me.

I'm really worried about my stomach. I'm worried about my face, but I'm really concerned about my tummy. See, when I run (which is rare, but happens) - it... well, it flaps. I mean, audibly.

Gosh, it's so NOT funny, and it's so NOT going to get better. And I so DON'T have the money to pay for any type of removal, either.

I hope there are girldes specifically designed for flaps. It would be disappointing to lose a bunch of weight only to be debilitated by the saggy skin.

Weigh In: 276


That's one of my goals, to have someone ask if I've lost. Chhhheeeee-eck. Down. Unfortunately it was the same person who asked me last time (my sis-in-law) when I set that as a goal. So... I'm going to wait for someone else to ask me. But it was good to have someone notice something.

I weighed myself THREE times today. First it was 276. Then, I went to the bathroom and it went to 277 (what the fudge?) - then I did a final weigh in and it was back at 276. That's where I'm keeping it.

If it's wrong, the scale will remind me of that next time. And I'm due for a period again, so I'm sure it will remind me with blazing fury.

I don't know if that's success or not. Maintaining through a brutal food-laden holiday. Somewhat of success, I guess. I really could have gotten on that train Wednesday night and rode it bareback through Sunday. Maybe even through Monday. Then I would tell myself that I'd skip the weigh in, for shielding horror's sake, and wait until next week. Then next week, decide to wait one more because of my period, and allow two weeks to fly by, and who knows where I'd be.

It's not far-fetched. In fact, when I really think about it, trying to lose (or maintain) through the holidays is... pretty bold. Cocky, you might even say.

Well, I'm feeling cocky. I am fine with my maintaining of 276. Sure, I'd like to have dipped to 275 this week, but oh well. I didin't. I didn't shoot up to 280, which would have been devastating (and could have easily happened).

I'm back on track, counting my calories. Though I'm tired of it, novelty worn off. The desire to lose weight hasn't, so the discipline of monitoring my intake is still there. It's tiring and annoying and one more thing to do. But, it's also gotten me some results.

I feel better. I'm more confident. Just those two things alone are worth it.

I'm still determined to get below 250 here. To show myself that my 265 wasn't the lowest, and isn't. That I CAN do it. I'm scared. I am. Trying not to let the fear stop me. Fear of success, fear of failure. Fear of change. Of being pushed outside my comfort zone. Lots of fears.

This week my challenge is going to be that I am busy. We have a large event being planned for the weekend and I'm one of the people in charge of it. I will be busy preparing. That might be good (because I'll eat less, be busy), or bad (because I'll be stressed and will eat). I'm hoping for the first option.

I also have some emotional stress I'm dealing with, so I'll want more than one glass of wine on occasion. I love my wine. I do, I do.

Finally, my period is coming up. Sometimes that brings on cravings that are, frankly, non-human. I've never really mastered that problem.

Mind over matter. Keep mind from getting too tired so it can continue the good fight.

Surviving Thanksgiving

I survived Thanksgiving. Barely.

Turkey Day, my calorie consumption was surely over. I had potatoes (two kinds), meat, sauces, gravy, pies, real whipped cream, cheese, crackers, cornbread... wine. I had it all.

And then I had more later after I cleaned up.

There was some guilt. I could have portioned my food out while I cooked, keeping within my calories. I could have. I think it would have been too overwhelming. But I might next year, if I'm still doing well like I am now.

It is a nuisance to always watch calories/fats/carbs - but it is not too much fun to feel uncomfortable in your own skin either.

Problem is, my fatigue and overwhelmedness carried over into the next day as well.

I counted my calories, but I'm not doing nearly as good as I did a few days ago. I'm not excited about weighing in, either.

I can't figure out if it is the holidays in themselves that is exhausting and throw me off, or the indulgence in the food. Maybe a bit of both. But I know I'm not at my best when I'm overwhelmed or stressed. I put all of my energy - good energy - into preparing a nice meal for family. I didn't count calories and calculate recipes - I baked by heart, putting into the food what I knew would be tasty.

My relaxed attitude spilled over into Wednesday and I went over my calories then.

UGH. It's hard. Today I'm nearly driving myself nuts trying to keep within the boundaries still. I know how disappointed I will be to have to re-lose weight, though - but I'm also trying to keep big picture about it, and not throw the baby out with the bathwater.

I wish I didn't have the issues with food that I have. I wish I could start from my goal weight.

I don't teach my kids to give up, or back down on the fight. I teach them to work hard and to be disciplined. It's hard when you're not doing that yourself. Although nobody, looking at me, would know how hard I've struggled just to maintain my big body, let alone lose.

Going Into The Battle

OK, it's just Thanksgiving, I mean... what could go wrong?

I could consume 5000 calories, setting myself back about a week. That's what.

Or I could drive myself mad trying to count every calorie.

I'm happily cooking away, excited to feed family yummy food.

My strategy for tomorrow is to enjoy - in moderation. That seems like a fair enough deal to me. Taste, savor, but not have a free for all. The calories count, they will have to be made up for. But complete denial would make me unhappy, and an aim for the happy medium is my sweet spot.

I'm looking forward to cooking, mostly.

What's your Thanksgiving Day strategy? 

Losing Weight Makes Me Angry (aka "Scared")

I'm a hoarder. Have you seen that show? I am a hoarder. A FAT hoarder. I hoard my fat cells. They make me comfortable. They buffer me from the world. They hide me. Sure, it's not "normal" - and in my world, I'm around a lot of very fit people. I can't imagine the thoughts they have in their little heads about me and my girth. I don't want to go there, or I'd punch them in the face.

I am losing my hoard with each pound. My identity, my safety net, my comfort zone. Losing it.

I was looking at this:

61 gone, 79 more to go to 198

I had a surge of anger, realizing I was down 61 pounds from my highest weight. That I was 18 pounds away from the top of the mountain, the half-way point.

That's a pretty stupid thing to make a person angry. Progress makes you angry? What a nutball!

A few minutes later I realize that the anger is actual fear. Fear makes more sense. Fear. I think that's what got me last time, the time before. As much as I loved how I felt, I couldn't imagine going much farther. I have an uncanny knack lately for having great ideas, great intentions, and no motivation or drive to complete them.

I don't know what psychological roadblock that is, but it is really annoying me.

The anger that turned to fear turned back to anger.

I really am determined to get past this point (for once). To hit that marker of being half-way, and continue past it.

To battle through my own head.

I'm angry that it is so hard.

Just the idea of being smaller should be enough for me.
Just the idea of dropping below 258 should be motivation.
Just the idea of how fat I've been for years, the dangling carrot of not being THAT FAT GIRL - shouldn't that be enough?!

It should, by society's standards.

276 - Thoughts About Weight Loss Surgery

Weigh in today: 276

That's good, I'm down one pound after a less than spectacular week. I really didn't exercise until the weekend (2 walks), and went over my calories by over 1/2 a days calories.  That was when I "allowed myself a little lenience" for the day. If I remember correctly, my "lenience" came in the form of alcohol, for the most part.

I weighed myself on Wednesday in the middle of the week and I was actually up two pounds. It scared (and frustrated) me.

I love the scale when it moves down, fear it when it moves up.

It's a great tool when you're trying to be healthier, but it can be the devil's tool on any given day.

Wednesday I had to choose between having one more lenience day, or getting right back on track. I got right back on track. I fought back all week, really, counting my calories, denying my urges to splurge.


Because I've been here before. Twice. Losing weight, feeling better, seeing results, making changes. And then something turns a corner. Something... changes. And I can no longer control my eating, every  cheat day turns into another cheat day/week/month/season, and I'm staring 300 in the eyes again, asking if it would like to dance.

I've earned the right to be nervous on this one. I have.

Sometimes my mind will go in the direction of WLS. I hate WLS. That's my knee-jerk reaction. I have friends who will swear by it, but I'm not sold. I have a family member who had surgery years ago, and she's been about 260-280 pounds for the last decade. Maybe that's the old surgery. Maybe she's one of the few that it doesn't work long-term for.

I do understand it, though. I won't say it is they easy route, but in a way it is the easiest, regardless. I can say that, never having done it. I know there are still food struggles - but they aren't the same, and you have a mechanically altered stomach to prevent (as intended) body blow up. You have a physically forced regimen. I say it is easy because your options are smaller. People lose weight, period. They do. And they don't regret it (because they have lost weight).

I don't know what that means for them 30 years down the line. I'm not sure. It is interesting. I just don't know if it is for me. Some days I think it would be wonderful. Everyone I've seen have it done loses weight. Yes, they struggle, but the LOSE. More than I have. Less yo-yo than I have. They're under 200. I'm not.

See how tempting it can be?

My biggest roadblock is that I don't have the money, which might just be a good thing. It cuts out an option for me.

I'll be happy with my 1 pound weight loss today and not worry about it so much. I've been doing good.

Weigh In: 277

I'm happy about my weigh in.

A combination of being the week after my period and pretty good eating rendered some results on the scale. I feel good. My clothes fit better.


Been here, done that. This is nothing new.

It doesn't always keep.

There's no saying I won't go back up.

Just as one good day, leading to another day, leading to another good day can make everything roses - one bad day will lead to a bad day, will lead to lead butt on the scale again.

I have done well with tracking my food. Last week I didn't exercise at all. It didn't seem to make a difference on the scale, but I want to note that it might have made a difference in my head.

Eat, move, feel better.

Eat, don't move... feel a little worse?


At any rate, my hurdles this week are a bit higher. I had family in town, which presented a lot of opportunities to over eat, and to have meals that were near to impossible to accurately track in my calorie-counter. I had three of those meals this week already. I chose a reuben sandwich, chicken panini, and turkey provolone panini. I had some fries. I skipped some chips. I drank non-calorie drinks. I didn't have dessert. I stayed on track the rest of the day.

I tried.

I might not lose weight this week.

I've had a few things I shouldn't have (mini snickers bar, mini baby ruth, mini heath bars). Mainly, I've had SUGAR. Sugar makes me crave more sugar.

I've been under stress. I don't feel the need to identify it. We all have stress. But it is out of the norm stress which oftentimes ends up in an overcompensation of food in my mouth.

Today I'm allowing myself a little lenience. Not a ton, but a little bit. 
Tomorrow I have to get on track and face forward. 
I have to prepare for Thanksgiving and do very well over the next week.

I haven't given up hope. I've just lost some steam from the first "sprint" of my journey.

Weigh In: 280.

I lost a pound.
I put a period after that because that's what's going on right now: my period.

Not good news on two fronts:
     It can inflate the weight
     It can distort the brain

I won't know if it has inflated my weight until next week. But, generally it does. I hate the fact that I've done well, sacrificed, and stayed within my range all week, only to hop on the scale and it barely moves. OK it moved. But not as much as I wanted it to. I was really hoping to get under 280.

Which leads into the brain distortion. Since I know that being on the period is not the best weigh-in time, I need to remind myself of that.

I ate well this week, I exercised, I was in a pretty good mood. I honestly can't think of anything negative about this week when I think of how I did. So I need to pull my brain away from feeling negative and pouty over a one-pound weight loss.

A pound is a pound, right? I could have stayed the same, and then what? My Wii scale even shot a bunch of flowers and stars and CONGRATULATED me for making my goal (which I didn't remember making - it actually told me to slow down).

Yet I sit here moping.

This week, I noticed my tummy feels smaller.
I've lost a good 8 pounds of sugar from my pouch this past month.
Where would I rather be? Where I was, or where I am now?


My NSV for the month of October: 
My clothes fit better. Even if I didn't have a scale, I would be able to tell that my clothes were not so uncomfortably tight. That was a horrible, horrible feeling. I'm not out of the woods on that, yet, but I'm in a much more comfortable place. I really like how it feels.

I also noticed that I have more energy. I'm not buzzing about looking for more and more to do, but I notice that I have a desire to get out and move. I have a feeling I am an active person trapped in a fat person's body. I wouldn't know any different, because I've always been trapped in this thick layer of fat. For years. For at least two decades.

My goal for the month of November:
     Get below 277 (it's on the sidebar in my "Goals" section).
     To continue on the path I'm on with eating and exercising - I'm doing well; focus and continue.