Friday, November 14, 2008

A Question He Will Regret Asking

In the car earlier this week Devon asked me if I have ever lied to him. I told him that yes, I had lied to him.

He asked me what I had lied to him about. I told him that he didn't want to know and that if I did tell him that he would regret asking.

He kept badgering and badgering me about it so I finally said " If I tell you, you will be sad and you will be upset that you asked". He promised me that he wouldn't be upset or mad so I told him.

"There is no Tooth Fairy"

I thought for sure that he had already figured out that there was no Tooth Fairy, Santa Claus etc. but I guess I was wrong. He was totally shocked. He asked what happened to the teeth. I told him that I had them in my dresser drawer. Then he asked about where the money came from etc.

I told him that because he knows that the tooth fairy doesn't exist that now he doesn't get any more money when he loses teeth. He was soooooo disappointed.

He was also sorry that he asked.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Are you talking to me????

"Don't lose any more weight. You are getting sooo skinny."

Huh? Seriously? Are you talking to me?

I hear this quite often actually and it never ceases to surprise me that people think that I am skinny. Me! Skinny! (mind still boggling)

I know that I have been very sporadic with the posting lately and to be honest with you, I don't know if it will change any time soon.

Life is busy. I am in love and trying to incorporate a relationship into a life that was already full. Sometimes there is a bit of juggling going on. I worry that my friends think that I have abandoned them even though I do make an effort to spend time with them. (Funny Girl ~ you, me and Tivo tomorrow night!)

My weight loss has slowed down dramatically. It took me 6 months to lose 50 pounds. It took me another 7.5 months to lose the second 50. It has been 3 and a half months since I hit 100 pounds gone and I have dropped another 16 pounds. It isn't much, but it is still a downward trend so I am not complaining.

Can you believe that I only have 26 pounds to go? That seems crazy to me. When I started I had almost 140 pounds to go and it seemed to be a monumental task. Now 25 pounds seems like almost a walk in the park compared to that. I do have a feeling that it will be a hell of a lot harder to lose that 25 pounds than I am anticipating though.

My goal is to be at goal by my cruise which is April 11, 2009. That gives me 6 months to lose 25 pounds. I think I can do that.
Here is a photo from my birthday last month. Can you guess who people tell me that I look like?

Sunday, October 12, 2008

She's Dancing With The Angels

Nana passed away yesterday afternoon. She went very peacefully and was with her daughters.

I will love you and miss you forever Nana.

LaReta May Rutherford

August 6, 1921 - October 11, 2008

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Potpourri O' Goodness

As you all know, I have lost over a hundred pounds.

I just have this question: Why can I STILL not wear knee high boots?????? My calves are still too big. I even tried the "plus size" boots and couldn't zip them past my ankle.

If I still can't wear knee high boots when I get to my goal weight (about 40 more pounds to go) I will be livid!!!!

My hormones are all out of whack. I don't know what is going on, but my menstrual cycle has decided to eff up. Instead of every 4 weeks, I am now being blessed with a visit from Aunt Flow every 3 weeks.

Not only is it making my moods swing all over the place and costing me more money in feminine products, but I think that might be part of the reason that my weight loss has gone all over the place lately.

I have a Dr. Appointment for my annual physical (ie: open my vajayjay with a medieval torture device) so I will make sure to bring the subject up. I am not on any kind of birth control so I have a feeling that they might try that to regulate my cycle.

Devon is now in 5th grade and will be 11 in a couple of months. He is still in elementary school but in a new one because they transferred him due to class size. His new school is much stricter than his old one.

They don't want the kids dropped off any earlier than 8:15 for breakfast and 8:35 for everyone else for class that starts at 8:44. That is fine, but I have to drop him off around 8:10 to get to the workout place on time. He got talked to for being there 5 minutes early. I understand that it isn't their job to baby sit him but he is pretty self sufficient and there are teachers and employees all over the place.

This morning I dropped him off at the end of the driveway and made him walk. It will take him at least 3 minutes and there was a crossing guard right across from where I dropped him off so I know he will be safe. He wasn't very happy about the walk though. I wonder how happy he will be when he realizes that he is going to be hoofing it every day down that loooonnnggg driveway.

Saturday, September 06, 2008

Plateau - Not Just A Geological Formation Anymore

My weight loss has tapered off. I am officially in the midst of what Weight Watchers terms a "plateau".

Their suggestion? Persevere!

Not really the advice that I was looking for, but at least it is sound.

Now, I understand that every once in a while your body decides that it needs to hang out at a particular weight for a while and to be honest, this is the first plateau that I have hit during my entire weight loss journey.

But it still sucks.

Here are my stats since I got back from vacation:

August 6: gained 0.4 pounds current weight 185.8
August 13: maintained (no movement on the scale)
August 20: - 2.2 pounds (YAY! I thought that it was just a hiccup and that the weight would start coming back off)
August 27: +0.6 pounds (what the??)
September 3 : -0.6 pounds (Big Ass Eye Roll) Current weight 183.6

Now, don't get me wrong... I am pleased as punch that I am still technically losing. But losing 2.2 pounds in 5 weeks is driving me crazy!!!!

After becoming used to losing an average of about 7 pounds per month, this is torturously slow.

I have been looking into why my body is just not dropping weight as quickly and there are a few scenarios that come to mind.

Number one is that my body has reached a point where it doesn't want to drop any more weight for a while. Some people term it the body starvation point. Everyone's body has a different point where it thinks that starvation might be setting in. Since I was so heavy, my body hasn't realized that my starvation point should be about 45 pounds lower than it currently is.

Number two, I am still working out, but typically work out 3-4 days per week rather than 5-6. Life has been so busy I just haven't been able to get to the gym quite as much. Next week I will be there every day for 5 consecutive days so we will see what happens.

Number three is that although I am still sticking to the plan, I have been enjoying a few BLT's (bites, licks, tastes) and maybe haven't been tracking them accurately. I am going to cut them out completely and see if this will make any kind of change.

Don't worry, my journey is far from over and I have no plans to chuck it all and go back to where I was. That was so much less of a life than the one that I am living now I couldn't bear to go back.

Saturday, August 09, 2008

Rollercoasters Make Me Nauseated

The past few weeks have been like a roller coaster. Up. Down. Up. Down.
Seriously folks, I am really tired of it.
Nana is still with us. After the Doctor told us that she wasn't going to last more than a few days, she started improving. Then she would get worse. Better.... Worse....
Nana turned 87 on August 6 and was allowed to come home from the hospital on August 7th. We all thought she wouldn't make it to celebrate the day and the fact that she is well enough to go home was the best birthday present of all. She is receiving Hospice at home and I doubt that she will return to the hospital and will instead opt for "going home" from the comfort of her own bed.
On a lighter note, I still stayed "on program" (stuck to my Weight Watchers guidelines) on vacation and finally achieved the biggest milestone yet.

I have lost over 100 pounds.

Yep! While on vacation and dealing with everything there I was still able to make good choices. It feels really good to know that even in stressful situations that I can still stick to my guns and make it work. Of course, there were times when I had to pick which Kashi bar sounded the best from the hospital cafeteria because there weren't any other healthy choices, but I did discover that Trail Mix was my favorite.

My computer with my photo editing stuff is being worked on, so my friend Funny Girl took a photo of me with her phone so that I can at least put something on here.

What I want to know is why do my thighs still look so darn big?????? Grrrr. I have always had bigger legs even when I was thinner but now with the loose skin that I have been blessed with, they seem to be larger than I remember.

I sometimes get frustrated with the loose skin on my arms and legs. It seems that instead of firming up like my torso did, the skin just gets saggier and saggier no matter how much I work out. Oh well, from what I understand, guys don't really care what you look like naked. They just care that you ARE naked or as my beloved brother said "Boobs are boobs" when I was lamenting about a lack of perkiness in that area.

Any hoo.... here are my before and current photos. Enjoy!

Before at 287.5 pounds and after losing 50 pounds (237 pounds)

Current weight 185 pounds (approximately a size 12)

P.S. I have tried to fix the scrunched paragraphs up at the top and it keeps effing it back up. Sorry!

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Saying Goodbye

Nana is fading very fast.

She will probably pass within the next 2-3 days.

We are all here trying to prepare and saying our goodbyes.

I can't remember anything ever being this hard.

Devastation only skims the surface.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

You Don't Always Get What You Want

Hi everyone!!!

I am currently typing this from the PC at my mother's house. I am here for two weeks of vacation.

When I planned the trip back in March, we were going to a family reunion and also to a time share resort for a week. We really weren't going to be here much and it sounded like a lovely, relaxing vacation.

Well, of course life is going to throw you some curve balls. Mine came in the form of my Nana getting Pancreatic Cancer.

For those of you who don't know, there is no cure for Pancreatic Cancer and there really is not much in the way of treatment either. It is quick and vicious. Most patients that are diagnosed with Pancreatic Cancer don't last 6 months.

Nana was diagnosed about a month ago. She is progressively getting more confused, stubborn and scared. She can no longer be left alone for any length of time which has caused my mother to file for FMLA (Family Medical Leave Act) so that she can take her to appointments and generally care for Nana.

Last week my mom had to go to a meeting at work and her husband had a Dr. Appointment. The neighbor lady is friends with Nana and asked my mom if she could stay with Nana. My mom reluctantly agreed because she was in a bind. The neighbor lady is elderly as well and my mom knew that she could visit with her, but if something happened that she wouldn't be able to physically assist my Nana, but Mom needed help so she went against her better judgement and left Nana with the neighbor.

Nana decided that this would be the perfect time to go outside and check on her flowers. She hasn't been allowed to do any gardening for a while and she wanted to see how her sweet peas were growing. The neighbor tried to convince her to stay in the house, but Nana has got a stubborn streak a mile wide and wouldn't listen.

Outside she fell and hit her head. The neighbor couldn't get her up and called my step-brother who lives down the street and my step-sister who lives a few miles away. My step-brother got there in less than 10 minutes, picked up Nana (who weighs about a buck ten) and put her into her bed.

Mom got home as fast as she could, took one look at Nana, called the Dr., packed her into the car and took her to the hospital. In a way, it was a huge blessing.

Once they got there, Nana's blood oxygen leven was at 71%. Normal is between 96-100% so it was really bad. They couldn't get her oxygen level back up until they put her onto a full face non rebreather mask (mom told me what it was) at 100% oxygen.

They found out that Nana has MRSA which is a really bad, antibiotic resistant infection which in turn has caused her to contract pneumonia and just to make it fun, Congestive Heart Failure to boot.

Suffice it to say, that if Nana wasn't in the hospital, she might not still be here. She is very ill, easily confused and at times in hullucinating. She does, however, still have her sense of humor firmly intact.

Devon and I drove straight there with my mom, as soon as we landed. Because of the MRSA we have to wear a gown, mask and gloves to go into her room. We went in and it took her a few moments to recognize us. She was very happy to see us, but was also seeing an imaginary dog in her room as well.

It was incredibly difficult to see her like this. She looked like she had been mugged and beaten within an inch of her life from the fall. HUGE purple raised bump on her forehead, two black eyes, scratches on her nose etc. She was breathing through her mouth and she had the white, filmy spittle coating the edges.

Her speech is slurred and difficult to understand but I could understand a few things. She said hello to me and to Devon.

I sat on the edge of the bed and got close enough for her to see me and be able to hear me. I stroked her face with my gloved hand and she closed her eyes and smiled a bit. I could tell that it brought her a lot of comfort so I continued to do it.

I looked at my mom and the tears filled my eyes and started streaming down my face. This isn't Nana. Nana is vibrant, funny, active and always talking. This was a faded memory of my Nana.

It came crashing home like a freight train that Nana will be gone sooner than later. I won't have her to talk to or to hear stories from. She won't be here waiting for me when I fly in to visit. I won't be able to play cards with her or sit with her in her room and watch The Food Network.

Devon got extremely upset and cried for a really long time. He is trying so hard to be brave, but he is only 10 years old and this will be the second major loss of a loved one (his great grandfather died a few years ago). He is very aware that Nana won't be with us much longer and is taking it very hard. I had to whisper to him that Nana needed to see him strong and to not cry in front of her. He was able to get his emotions under control until we left and then we stood in the hallway and I held him as he cried.

Last night, I slept in Nana's bed. It brought me a bit of comfort to be around her things.

Mom says that Nana has her good days and her bad ones and we happened to arrive on a bad day. I am hoping that I see her on a good day because I don't know how I can face 2 weeks of last night. It was definitely turns what was supposed to be a fun trip into a very somber occasion.

My mother has been doing basically everything for my Nana. She cares for her at home, makes sure that she gets her medicine and takes her to all of her appointments. In addition she has to watch her carefully because Nana can be unpredictable. They had to put a monitor in her room so that they could her hear at night if Nana needed help.

I honestly don't know how she has stayed as strong as she has. Mom is sad a lot. She knows that she is losing her mother. She watches her slowly slip further and further away every day and is trying to prepare herself as much as she can for the inevitable. But I can see the added lines to her face. The drawn, sad expression when she is lost in thought.

I want to be here for my mom as well as Nana. I only have two weeks. I pray that Nana gets well enough to leave the hospital and spend her remaining days at home. I have convinced Mom to look into Home Heath when or if Nana comes home. If she doesn't, I will worry about Mom's health as well.

Today we are going to see Nana again. I pray that she is more aware and lucid so that she can communicate with me a bit better. I plan to go up there, stroke her face again and just sit and talk with her, tell her how much I love her and just gaze at the face of someone that I have loved and has loved me since the day that I was born.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Project Diversity

At work we have a 15 minute meeting almost every day. Once a month, they ask for people to come in and talk about something related to diversity.

We have had people come in and talk about their heritage, overseas adoption, autism etc.

They asked for volunteers and I offered to do a meeting about what it is like to be morbidly obese and about my weight loss journey.

Today was the day that I did the meetings (6 of them in total) and I was really pleased with the results.

Without further ado... here is my speech.

A few years ago I went to Michigan's Adventure with my friends and our kids. We had been at the park for a few hours riding rides and decided to ride the Wild Cat. As a group we all went up the ramp, stood in line and waited our turn.

The coaster came in and let the passengers off and I noticed that it was a divided seat, not a bench seat. I started feeling a little bit uncomfortable, but stayed in line. When it was our turn to get on the coaster, I made sure that my son was in his seat and buckled in before I got into my own seat. It was a very tight squeeze, but I was able to get seated in the coater. I grabbed the seatbelt to strap myself in and I couldn't get it closed. It was so close and I pulled and pulled, but I couldn't get the belt buckled. In front of an entire line of people waiting their turn, I had to get off of the coaster and stand on the other side, alone, facing the crowd that was staring at me knowing that I was too fat to fit on the ride. I stood there and waited for my son and friends to finish the ride and return to the station.

I can still feel the embarrassment that stained my face that day.

I couldn't even think about doing this diversity pre shift until I'd lost over 50 pounds. Because you feel that everyone's judging you, for being lazy, eating too much, not taking care of yourself, not trying hard enough. You feel your voice doesn't count. You feel you can't talk about what it's like to be fat until you've proven yourself and shown that you're taking steps not to be fat anymore.

And now, I'm still overweight so it's not easy to talk about it now. But I don't want to be one of those people who only talks about what it's like to be fat from the vantage point of a nice, safe size 6, where how horrible it was is only a vague, awful memory.

I want to talk about while I'm still in it because for once I want to give power to my words from within my own situation. I don't want to write some chirpy "after" post once I've reached my goal weight about how much it sucked to be fat. I want to write it while I'm living it and while it's real.

I was morbidly obese for over 10 years. Over 2x's of what is considered a healthy weight. It was a way of protecting myself from the world - putting a physical barrier between myself and the world based on things that happened when I was younger. Issues of abandonment, rejection, low self worth all contributed to me turning to food for comfort. After my dad left we were very poor and were on welfare. High carb diet (Ramen noodles, mac and cheese) contributed to poor eating habits and weight gain.

I was 240 when I got pregnant and got down to 204. I eventually gained it all back plus some. After I started working at Foremost, I lost 30 pounds on a low calorie diet and exercising during lunch. Once lunches went to 30 minutes, I gave up and gained it all back. I didn't make any effort to lose weight or have a healthier lifestyle for another 6 years.

It's hard to be fat. You don't fit into chairs. When you go to a restaurant and someone suggests eating outside, you do a subtle scan of the chairs to see if they're sturdy, if the arms are narrow, if you'll be uncomfortable spilling over the sides of the seat during the meal. When somebody asks if you want to go to a baseball game, you hope they have tickets fro the expensive, roomy seats. Nobody wants to sit next to you in the Metro or on the bus. You see every seat fill up around you while the one next to you remains resolutely empty.

People can be and at times are very cruel. I watch them. I see their looks, their rolling of the eyes. The glances between two friends where one will puff out their cheeks to emulate being fat and the other will double over laughing. But nobody will ever talk about it. You can't make reference to it yourself. It's the elephant in the room and if you ever mention needing to lose weight, or having to shop in the plus size department, people look awkward and look away. It becomes your job not to make people uncomfortable, not to talk about it, not to push it. You diminish your expectations for a good life in order to have some semblance of happiness.

The turning point for me wasn't anything earth shattering. My mother, who had been doing Weight Watchers offered to pay for a 3 month membership for my birthday. At first I thought that it was a horrible idea for a gift and truly just wanted her to give me the money. $120 would buy me a great pair of shoes. I hemmed and hawed about it for a few weeks. Then I noticed that when I was leaving work wearing heels that my ankles were hurting when I walked down the stairs. With my love of shoes, that was unacceptable and I decided then and there to take Mom up on her offer.

I joined WW and went to the first meeting. It wasn't that long. The worst part was being weighed and realizing that I wasn't too far away from 300 pounds. The first week I stuck to the program. I journaled what I ate, I measured my food to learn what a correct portion was. I cut back on diet soda and drank a lot of water. I stayed within the point range that WW said I should be at. The next week I weighed in and I had lost nothing. I was devastated. I wanted to cry during the meeting. I did cry afterwards. I talked to my leader and she said to give it another week. Sometimes it just takes time for your body to catch up with what you are doing.

The second week I lost 7 pounds.

Within the first month I realized that WW was something that I could do. It wasn't that hard to stick to the program. The points were relatively easy to figure out. I made a promise to myself then and there that I was going to do this. No "we'll see how it goes" or "I'll try". It was more of a "I am going to do this no matter what. There is no other option than to succeed."

From June 13 to the middle of October, I had lost 40 pounds. I noticed that my weight loss was slowing down so I figured that it was time to bite the bullet and start working out. At first I went to the workout room downstairs and walked on the treadmill or tried the elliptical. The first time I tried it, I made it about 2 minutes and thought that I was going to pass out. Slowly I worked up my resistance and speed and now can easily do 30 minutes at a level 7. After about 6 months of working out downstairs I joined a gym. I work out 4-5 times per week and have found workouts that I love like Zumba.

In 13 months, I went from 287.5 pounds and have lost 97 pounds and currently weigh in at 190. I have gone from a size 24 to a size 12/14. I still have 50 pounds to lose but I am not worried about it. I know that I won't ever give up and that it really is all mind of matter. My mind is overcoming my matter.

Weight loss, like being fat, is also hard. Lots of people are able to make it work, but a lot of people can't make it work. This doesn't mean that they are stupid, lazy or that they aren't trying and it doesn't mean that they aren't thinking about it every minute of the day and they probably spend a lot of the time thinking about what you think about it. They don't need people making fun of them, talking about them or treating them any less than anyone else.

There are a lot of preconceptions of obese people. They are dirty, slothful, lazy and poor employees. Many times the opposite is true. I rarely allowed myself a slobby day because if I went out in public, I was perpetuating the stereotype of what many people viewed obese to be. Many non-obese people see obesity as a lifestyle choice in spite of the great difficulty obese people face when trying to lose weight.

Discriminating against and making fun of fat people is one of the only acceptable forms of prejudice. You would never openly mock someone because of their race, sexual orientation or religion. You might do it behind closed doors but not to their face. But it is OK to make fun of fat people. Why? Usually they don't fight back. They look at you with a sad, disappointed face, turn and walk away. Obese people don't need others to make fun of them, talk about them or treat them as less of a person. No one ever said anything to me, however hurtful, that I hadn't already thought to myself a thousand times before.

Everyone has things that they struggle with. Just because theirs is on the outside for everyone to see, doesn't give anyone the right to harass them or treat them with disrespect. Besides, nothing you say, kind or unkind, can ever convince a person to improve themselves. That kind of motivation has to come from within, and only when the person is ready. The most helpful thing you could do for an obese friend is to listen to them and be there for them when they need to talk.

To people who are where I was: it doesn't matter where you are on your journey or if you have even started it, when you are ready, you can achieve amazing things. If you are happy with where you are, I am so proud of you. Accepting yourself is the first step to reaching acceptance from others. As long as you are comfortable in your skin and love yourself that is all that matters.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Unexpected Bonuses

For the first time since I was in 8th grade, my sister and I weigh roughly the same.

She has always been the skinny sister and I was always the fat one.

It helped her that she always worked on her feet and was walking miles a day and when at home running after 3 kids.

We were talking yesterday and we realized that we wear the same size.

I am going to Washington next week to visit family. I get there on Tuesday, and my sister will get there from Texas, on Friday.

I have a feeling that I will be coming back missing a few cute outfits. But she is my sister, so I won't mind giving them up...too much.

I also convinced her to try Zumba with me. They have classes at the YMCA and my mom can get us 2 week passes.

Monday, June 23, 2008

What A Difference A Year Makes

I celebrated my one year anniversary on Weight Watchers on June 13. It is amazing to me how much my life has changed. It is hard for me to put down everything that has changed for me, but I will do my best.

The biggest change is obviously my weight. I have lost over 93 pounds. That is more than the average 4th grader. I have gone from a size 22/24 to a size 12/14. Even my shoe size has gone from a 9 1/2 wide to a 9 medium.

I went from someone who could barely walk up a flight of stairs without being out of breath to someone who can work out for an hour and leave feeling energized with sweat dripping off me. I have learned to enjoy working out, especially Zumba.

Some things are easier, some are harder. I enjoy wearing more feminine clothing. I don't have to struggle to find things that fit and look nice anymore. I know what looks good on my body and what isn't flattering.

There are things about my body that I really think are sexy. My waist, collarbones, neck, and butt. Things that I still don't like and don't think I ever will are my arms, thighs and excess skin. There are parts of my body that look like they are melting but I do my best to accentuate the positives so that no one notices the negatives.

My confidence level has increased 100% but I still have a hard time believing compliments. When people call me skinny, all I can think of is that I still have 45 pounds to lose. I tend to discount how far I have come and concentrate on how far I still have to go. When people are impressed with how much I have lost, I tend to downplay it and act like it isn't a big deal. I don't feel pride in my accompliment to date because I am still a work in progress like an artist working on a masterpiece.

I fit into and onto things that I either couldn't or felt very uncomfortable. Chairs have extra room rather than me squeezing into them and overflowing out of them. Painting my toenails doesn't require the talents of a contortionist. Tying my shoes doesn't cause me to get out of breath from squishing my lungs to reach my feet.

I am wearing a bikini top at the pool and feel totally comfortable in it. I don't feel like I have to cover up as much of my body as possible. I don't show it off, but I wear cute, fitted clothing that I wouldn't have ever been able to wear at 287 pounds.

As much as I have changed, a lot of me has remained the same. I still have the same friends, still have the same job and like to do many of the same things that I used to. Of course I have new interests to compliment the old ones, but I love that there are so many opportunities and options available now that I was either unable or unwilling to try.

I am so excited to be traveling next month to Seattle. This will be the first time on a plane for me since I have been below 255. I look forward to not having to sqeeze into the seat and overflowing into Devon's space.

This summer I plan to go to Michigan's Adventure and ride the Wild Cat. Last time I went, I couldn't get the belt buckled and had to get off and stand there waiting for the rest of my group while they rode it.

I can't believe what a year, determination and focus has brought me.

Thank you to everyone who has encouraged me, listened to what I had to say and basically picked me up, dusted me off and got me back on track when I veered off or faltered.

My next project is to do a diversity presentation at work about obesity. It is something that I never would have done a year ago. Now I can't wait.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

A Phone Call That Changed Everything

I was talking to my mom yesterday and she gave me some really bad news. Something that I was hoping wouldn't happen. We were hoping for the best, but unfortunately that wasn't to be.

My Nana has pancreatic cancer.

A few months ago she had a CT Scan and there was a lesion on her pancreas but it wasn't clear what it was. They decided to wait a few months and do another scan.

The results came in on Tuesday evening. My mom is a nurse and when she got the call in the evening she knew that it wasn't good. Apparently they only call at night when it is really bad. They told her that it was probably cancer (about a 99% chance) and that it had spread to the lymph node system as well.

Last week my mom had purchased airline tickets for her, Nana and my step-father to fly out here for Christmas. Nana will more than likely be gone by then.

When Mom told Nana the prognosis on Wednesday morning her response was "Well, shit!" and then went on to say how she hadn't been feeling well for a long time. Soon after, she resumed her daily routine of puttering out in the flower beds and the garden.

Nana is 86 years old and has lived a long, full life. She had 3 kids, 7 grandkids and numerous great grand children. My grandfather passed away over 25 years ago and Nana never remarried.

We will be out to see her next month. Mom says she will probably still be around but that they aren't going to do anything invasive or debilitating to try and prolong her life. Her health is frail and it would probably just kill her sooner.

As hard as it is, I will be helping my mom with Nana's funeral plans. Nana told us that we could do whatever we wanted since she wasn't going to be there anyway.

I have decided that I want to do a photo montage with songs from every era of Nana's life to celebrate her life and the things that made her so special. I hope that I can do even a modicum of justice to an incredible woman who I respect and love immensely.

Thursday, June 05, 2008

How Do I Say This Delicately????

Screw it!!!!!!

I AM UNDER 200 POUNDS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

That is all.

Friday, May 30, 2008

Party On Dude.... Without Me.

A couple of weekends ago I went out with some of my girlfriends to a bar that I had only been to one other time.

It is a relatively nice bar where sneakers are not allowed and most men tend to wear button down shirts and ties although not de rigour, aren't uncommon either.

I was wearing a nice pair of dark boot cut jeans, high heeled sandals, a cropped, tailored black jacket with a tangerine tank top underneath to provide a pop of color. All in all, I was one hot tamale.

To start out the night we got a table that was perfect for people watching. Unfortunately, I was facing the wrong direction to see the majority of the bar, but I still had a good view of people who were coming in.

While Jen, Lindsey, Colleen and I were enjoying our first drinks, a gentleman came over to the table and starting talking to me.

He said " Hi, my name is Jeff. I wanted to come over and talk to you, but I am with a bachelor party and have to leave to go to another bar. If I give you my phone number, will you call me?"

He was quite good looking and taller than me in heels (always a huge plus). The way that he approached me really impressed me so I told him that I would call him and also gave him my number.

When Jeff left the table, the girls asked me if I knew him. I responded that I hadn't ever seen him before and Colleen said "I hate you" jokingly in reference to the entire situation. All the women agreed that nothing like that had ever happened to them before. It felt pretty damn good to be singled out like that.

Later that night I was on the dance floor by myself. When I get tipsy, I don't care who is watching, I love to dance and I just get out there. Since it was pretty crowded out there it didn't really matter anyway.

So, I am out there doing my thing and this cute guy starts dancing with me. We danced and danced and danced. I had to leave to go to the bathroom and then went back to my table. Later on I went back out and danced with him some more.

His name was Brent and he is a P.E. teacher in a school district about 2 hours away. He was up for the weekend with some friends and had a party bus to take him and his friends back to their hotel.

Brent invited me to go with them on the party bus. At the time I was just tipsy enough to think that it was a good idea. Luckily my friends were watching out for me and Jen reminded me that I drove here there and had to sober up to drive her home.

I stopped drinking and started sobering up for the drive home. Brent kept pestering me to go with him to the hotel. He offered to ride with me and have me drive him back. Then he wanted his friend to come. He kept at it so much that I got really uncomfortable with him even being at the table.

Right before the bar closed Jen and I were sitting at the table and Brent was there still trying to get me to drive him to his hotel with his creepy friends who had been watching us dance all night. He turned to his friend and his friend gave him something small and he had it in his hand.

Jen turns to me and said "I don't know what it is, but his friend just handed him something small and he has it in his hand right now. It could be a pill, a condom or something else, but I think it was a pill."

What the eff???

I turn to Brent and demand to see what is in his hand. He opens his left hand and I make him show me his right hand. He opens his hand to reveal a small, dark green pill.


I asked what the pill was and he told me that it was a vitamin because he is a body builder. So, I told him to take the pill. He said "Now?" and I said "Yes!". He swallowed the pill, but that was the last nail in the coffin for me.

Who in their right mind brings a vitamin at the bar? No one, that's who. I don't care if you are a body builder, Albert Einstein or Tony Gazelle. No one brings vitamins to the bar. Especially if you don't want to be accused of adding said "vitamin" to someones drink to incapacitate them.

My friends and I started walking out of the bar and Brent followed me and said "Don't you trust me?" I turned around and said "I met you at a bar. I don't know you. I don't trust anyone." and then I turned back around and continued walking out the door.

My friends were about 10 feet ahead of me. I look behind me and Brent is nowhere to be seen. He must have still been in the bar.

Surrounded by people who were leaving the bar and getting hot dogs from the vendor out side, I yell to my friends "RUN" and take off as fast as I can behind them. We run around the corner and they are still running at high speed. I holler at them to stop so that I can catch up. Then I tell them to get behind me so that if Brent comes around the corner he can't see me.

We get to our cars safely with no sign of Brent or his creepy friends. Some conversation ensues about how crazy and ridiculous the entire situation was and then we separate into our respective cars and meet back up at Denny's.

You can't go out to the bar without getting 4th meal, right?

The rest of the night goes on without a hitch. We sit and talk about the entire evening (we dubbed Brent with the nickname Cialis) and about everything that girls talk about when they are alone at a table together.

I go home and my last thought before falling asleep was that never in my life has a night out gone from such a high to such a low in that short of time.

P.S. Jeff called the following Tuesday. No plans for a date yet, but we shall see.

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Here She Is... Miss 80 Pounds Down

Me and my Weight Watchers leader Lisa. I LOVE that woman. This was taken when I hit 75 pounds.

Here are my official 80 pounds down photos.

Definitely curvy.

Showing off my least favorite body part right arms...ugh!

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

If we are facing in the right direction, all we have to do is keep on walking

For the past week I have been feeling a bit discouraged. I have been tired and have been forcing myself to work out every day.

Last week the weather was nice and I was able to be outside to work out for 3 days. It was wonderful to feel to sun on my back as I walked around the paths in the office park where I work. There was even some laughable attempts at jogging, but I just don't think that my body is ready for it.

I want to be able to do whatever I want. If I want to run 2 miles my mind is convinced that my body should be able to do it. My body, on the other hand, is quite adamant that it is NOT ready for running or jogging. After about 200 yards or 30-45 seconds, I am panting like I have run a marathon. It is VERY frustrating.

This week I have been driven back to the exercise room due to temperatures on the low 30's during my work out time. What used to be a comfortable place, now seems like a dingy prison. Even with the music blasting in my ears I am bored looking at the same four walls day in and day out. The same 2-3 people come in while I am there but for the most part I am alone. Left to my thoughts and now I am seeing those thought turn dark and depressing.

I have come so far and I know that I am not going to give up. My dark thoughts are fleeting for the most part, but it still bothers me that I am having them.

I am seriously considering joining a gym with part of the stimulus package. What a better way to put it to use? Stimulate the economy while I stimulate my mind and body.

I fould a quote that I find very helpful when I am feeling dark & twisty like I have been in the past week.

"Whatever you can do or dream you can, begin it.
Boldness has genius power and magic in it"

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Does Miss Manners Have A Chapter For This?

I wondered if it would even happen. If I would get the dreaded question. It was probably only a matter of time before it happened, but even so, I was ill prepared.

"Did you have Gastric Bypass Surgery"?

There was a strange dichotomy of joy and fury.

Joy because, hey, I have lost a lot of weight and for most people in todays society with GBS being so prevalent, they think that they only way that people can lose is to get sliced open and have the majority of your stomach stapled or removed. People have noticed the large weight loss and may think that it is a compliment. The media has brainwashed the masses into believing that self control is almost non-existent and that because we live in a self indulgent society that there is just no way that people can lose weight the old fashioned way. Eat less. Move more.

Then comes the fury. Who the hell do you think you are by assuming that I had to get cut open to do what I have done? Do I look like someone with no self control? Have you not observed me exercising nearly every day and bringing in healthly, portion controlled meals? If you assume that I had surgery, then you haven't been paying attention.

Instead of asking me if I had surgery, it would be more polite to ask me flat out how I lost the weight that I have. Believe me, I am so excited and have immersed myself so fully into this lifestyle that I can do on ad nauseum about Weight Watchers, exercise, menus, activity points, etc. etc. etc.

Phew! It felt good to get that off my still size D chest.

Have I told you all that I am now able to shop in regular stores? How cool is that. I am still at the point where I can shop plus sizes if I want to, but I CAN shop regular sizes too. Currently I am in a size 16 (getting pretty close to a 14) or a size XL.

Oh, and I also forgot to tell you. Last week I officially made over 75 pounds lost. Actually it was 77.9. Due to a volcano that is currently residing on my chin, I decided to wait to take my 75 pounds down photo until the volcano was slightly smaller than Mt. Vesuvius.

Well, this week I went in expecting not to lose anything. It had been a good week, but my scale at home wasn't showing much movement. Shock the shit out of me. I am officially down 80.1 pounds. That means instead of a 75 lb. pic, you will be all blessed with an 80 pounds lost pic this weekend or early next week.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

A Letter I Wish I Could Have Written 10 Years Ago

Hi Self,

I have been here with you for the past 34 years. I know that you are tired and that you want to play with your son and that you just get way too tired.

People love you for who you are, but I know that you aren't happy with yourself. The way that clothing fits, how tight theater and airline seats are, feeling like people are watching you eat, the pain in your feet and back.

I know that you are scared to lose weight because of things that have happened in the past. You are incarcerated in the fat and flab that you think protects you. It isn't protecting you. It is imprisoning you.

Just start today. Just give it a shot. It works. Really! I know you can do it. I am here waiting for you. The freedom you will feel is exhilarating.

You will feel sexy and energetic. Your clothing will fit and look good on you. Men will notice your confidence and you will get the attention that you never thought you deserved.

You will still be loved. But now you will be inspiring and respected and admired.

P.S. It isn't as hard as you think it is.



Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Random Bar Conversations

This is an actual conversation that I had with a guy at the club. I had previously scoped him out for my friend Eric to find out if he was gay or straight. He was straight but followed me back to my table so I quickly introduced him to a girl that I had befriended at the table next to mine.

Me: It looks like you are having luck at the bar. Are you taking her home with you?

Him: I would rather take you home with me.

Me: I'm celibate.

Him: I'm Rodney.

And that is why I doubt that I will ever meet a Mensa member at the club.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008


Well, I had my date last night. We met at a small bar for a drink and sat and chatted for about an hour.

Me, smarty pants that I am, had a self imposed time limit on the date. I promised my babysitter that I would be home by 8:00 which forced me to leave an hour after I arrived. I think that it was a good thing.

My date, we'll call him Martin, looked a bit older than his 32 years. He grew up in California and has a passion for fishing and so this could account for the lines around his eyes and mouth. What it didn't explain is why he talked like a fifty year old man.

I am not sure how to explain this. He talked like a 50 year old life long smoker. The way his mouth moved. It was very strange. I knew that he was only 32 but he looked 15 years older.

I was fine with him looking older, heck, it makes me look younger still. But, I doubt that I will see him again.

Almost the entire time we were talking, he was bad mouthing his ex-wife and her family. It was obvious that there are a lot of issues that he has yet to work through in regards to the dissolution of that relationship while still having to be in contact with her because of their child.

I totally understand. I was there myself for a few years. It can be so frustrating that it can nearly consume you. But I have moved past that and don't want to really deal with the baggage that comes along with emotions being so close to the surface.

On a brighter note, I have been asked out on a date by Aaron, a very sweet guy that I met Saturday night. Not sure if he is my type either, but I have no problem going on a date with him to get to know him better.

This is not the guy that called me when I was at work. His name is John and we chatted for a few minutes while I was headed to meet Martin last night. Hopefully he will call me again. He is the closest to what I would consider my type of all of the men that I have met recently.

I should have decided that I didn't want to date a long time ago. I would probably be married by now... LOL

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Freaking Out Right Now

I have a date. A semi-blind date. We have seen photos of each other and talked on the phone but haven't met in person.

I haven't had a date since July of 2006. I am really nervous.

I don't know why I am freaking out. He has seen photos from before I started losing weight to photos that were taken last Saturday. He knows what I look like and what to expect.

Maybe I am nervous because for the first time, there is a bit of potential. He is funny, good looking and a great conversationalist.

On a very strange note...his ex wife has the same name as I do.. then we found out that we both work in the insurance industry. Then we found out that his ex and I work for the same company.

I don't know her. She works in a different building. I just thought that the coincidences were very strange.

How crazy is that?

Oh, and while I was writing this, I got a call from another gentlemen that I met. I was still at work and told him that I would call him right back.

All of this right when I decided that I wasn't looking to date.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Call The Fire Department (Yeah, I Am That Hot)!

I went out with my friends on Saturday night dancing and had a fantastic time. I had a few drinks and met a few people but the best part is that I just felt sexy as hell the entire night.

I even have evidence...

I was uploading this photo and I realized, I am one sexy bitch.

For the past 5-10 years I have just felt diminished as a person the larger that I became. I am finally starting to feel like the hot, sexy woman that I deserve to be.

When I compared the photo to my previous favorite photo (seen below), I am finally realizing how far I have come (68 pounds down so far ...Holla!) and the fact that I am only half way to my goal weight doesn't mean that I am not allowed to feel sexy until then.

I spent half the night dancing with a 25 year old cutie and definitely worked off (most) of the calories that I consumed in the Rum and diet Cokes that I drank.

I just feel so damn fabulous.

P.S. What do you think about the bangs? I ♥ them!

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Mo' Money! Mo' Money!

I have been reading for weeks about the death knell of CRT televisions or any kind of television without a high definition receiver. I was reading article after article to try and see how much the converter boxes were going to run and which converter box would work the best for me etc. etc. etc.

It didn't take long for me to realize that as long as you have cable you were good to go without a converter box.

Then my TV died. It was 10 years old and worked perfectly up until yesterday morning. It started fading. You could still see the picture but it looked like it had been out in the sun for a year. Then the flickering started and occasionally it would black out to a thin line and then go back to full screen. It would do this a few times and then go back to the faded picture again.

I have a really large living room so anything smaller than a 30 inch screen would look like a dollhouse TV. I started pricing out all of the televisions out there and although I knew that they were pricey, I didn't realize exactly how expensive they were. To get an HDTV with the same screen size was going to cost at least $559.00 and that was the super cheap ones.

I don't know about you, but I don't have $600 lying around to use willy nilly on anything that I want. I tend to budget things and even with my quarterly bonus and tax return, I had pretty much already allocated them to other things like paying the hospital bill, airline tickets to Seattle this summer and paying off a credit card.

I am not a techie. I don't have to have the latest and greatest and frankly, it pisses me off that the majority of stores no longer even carry the CRT style of television that is less than half the price of the Plasma, LCD, Projection styles for the same screen size.

Sears is one of the few stores that still sells them and they were pretty reasonably priced at $299.00 for a 32 inch model. I probably would have gone there to purchase a new TV, but instead started scouring Craigslist.

If my TV was going to go on the fritz, this is the perfect time. Lots of people upgraded to HD or Plasma for the SuperBowl and want to get rid of their old TV. I was able to find a 32 inch television that is only 2 years old for $150 and a 25 inch that is 4 years old for $70. Since the television in my bedroom is borrowed and REALLY old, I figured that since I could get two televisions for less than a new CRT one, that is what I would do.

I will be picking them both up on Friday. Then I won't go cross-eyed when I am trying to watch the Biggest Loser episode that is currently sitting on my TiVo.

Thursday, January 31, 2008

When Love Is Not Enough

I know that I haven't been posting much. My life is very hectic right now but I wanted to pop in and give you an update.

I am down 62.5 pounds so far for an average weekly weight loss of 1.8 pounds. I know that the first 60 pounds made a big difference, but I think that the next 60 pounds lost will be incredible to see.

My next goal is 75 pounds lost by April 1. I am pretty sure that I can hit that goal and will be sure to post photos.

I still read everyone's blogs and although I rarely comment, I want you to know that I enjoy everything.

One blog in particular , Boobs, Injuries & Dr. Pepper, had a post that made me cry but also made me angry and proud.

PLEASE, PLEASE go and read it here:

I have never donated to someone based on a blog post, but I did today. Go and read it and I know that you will do what you can.

Going to call my Nana kisses,


Thursday, January 17, 2008

Mac Attack

I was around 11 or 12 and had just boiled noodles for macaroni and cheese and realized that I needed the strainer.

I bent down the get the strainer and failed to notice that my hand was still on the handle of the pot and it was sitting on the counter right above me and accidentally dumped boiling hot water on my head.

Genius that I am, I always put butter in the water to give the noodles a better taste. Of course, this helps keep the heat in too.

I screamed and ran into the bathroom and stuck my head under the bathtub faucet. My mom brought me a bucket and we filled it and I stood there leaning over the side of the bathtub with my head in the bucket of cold water for about 20 - 30 minutes.

When I was feeling better and had my hair in a towel, my mom brought me a bowl of the macaroni and cheese (the noodles had stayed in the pan). I didn't want it, but when me sister told my mom that she was stupid for bringing it to me because there was no way that I would want it after I dumped the boiling water on my head, I ate it and told my mom that it was really good so that I didn't hurt her feelings.

Got any good stories about hurting yourself?

Monday, January 14, 2008

Chuffage ~ A Tale of Two Stomachs

Sunday dinner is a big thing at my house. My room mate makes a big dinner and invites lots of people over.

Last night was "Soul Food Sunday". Fried chicken, greens, mac & cheese, cornbread and a salad. I started out great with about 1/2 cup mac & cheese, a huge salad, 1 small piece of cornbread and 1 piece of boneless skinless chicken that had been breaded and fried.

I ate my meal and was pleasantly full. I didn't want anything else.

About an hour later I went into the kitchen and everything still looked so good, I made myself another place with more mac & cheese, another piece of chicken and 2 pieces of cornbread.

I basically inhaled it and within 2 minutes of eating everything I had shooting pains in my stomach and major cramping. I haven't felt that way ever. I was on the couch doubled over in pain. I went to the bathroom and most of what I had eaten came back up.

It was just too much for my body and my smaller stomach to handle.

Before WW I could have eaten that and gone back for dessert.

I did track everything and before the chuffage, my dinner came to 38 points. After the chuffage I took back half of the weeklies that I had used (11 out of 22).

I definitely learned my lesson last night.

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Wordless Hump Day Hottie

This weeks Hump Day Hottie is ~ Michelangelo's David