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17 April 2014

Thursday, right? I feel like that cartoon that reads 'I would have enjoyed Spring more if I'd known it only lasted 3 days'.

I woke this morning totally psyched on going Atkins for at least 30 days to 'shake things up a bit' but caved to vegetable soup (with carrots & tomatoes) by 2pm. This AFTER dipping into the candy bowl too many times to confess.

Ahh well, there's always tomorrow to be perfect.

But our challenge today instructs us to accent the positive instead of the negative so although I didn't give it the opening headline time to turn this journal around by bragging about how very cool I was changing the bed this morning including turning both mattresses end to end (two twins for the split king) as well as completely making it in less than 15 mins without getting hot, sweaty, tired, or needing to fall back onto it and take a nap. This was NOT possible two years ago. I know the F2MC is happening because I flipped those mattresses like flapjacks. Grrr! Step right up and buy a ticket to see the amazingly strong bed changing lady. Doesn't exactly roll off the tongue. Oh well.

For an update on the 'dating myself' experiment - not bad - but then again, we haven't had our first fight yet. I'm still 'getting to know me' (cue the soundtrack from King & I) and have been proceeding with it by answering date questions suggested online. They seem fairly shallow and I'm not sure I'd really want to hang around anyone to whom such information is important for very long but these are what I consider 'the baby steps.' For my first week of dating I gifted myself with accessories for my bike: basket, mirror and bell. Isn't that cute! I'm so darn thoughtful! (Huge LOL with an eye roll).

On the other hand I have been using this insight to actually draft a 'profile' on Match and ... surprise surprise... I'm not getting 'winked' like I was when I was vague and mysterious. What does THAT have to say about internet dating? Was it that line in my profile that shared 'I'm financially independent so I'll never ask you to loan me money but will never loan you any either'?

I couldn't resist. I'd walked thru the living room far too many times when Cutty was watching Judge Judy and invariably, in between the 'your pit bull dog bit my chihuahua' case there was some person who'd loaned their internet dating person (sometimes men but usually a woman) money. Cutty would make me stop and watch as a training film for widowhood. Seriously.

And another kind of snarky comment - at least 9 out of 10 profiles read the man is seeking a woman who's 'slender, athletic and toned' and my thought was 'well, let's see, statistically over 50% of society is considered obese so I would imagine THAT woman got snapped up early, dude.' Then again there was a guy seeking a woman anywhere from 23 to 121. Seriously? 122 is the cutoff? You snob.

On the positive note - I'm beginning to wonder if photoshop made a fortune with these profiles or if I've just been overestimating a person's age for years. I would have guessed those 55-65 year old men, in person, to be in their 40's. It's making me rethink everything I ever knew about anything. Hmm.

Ok, enough silliness. The soup finally warmed me and took away my sugar frenzie. Yay. ATF is doing well. I'm supposed to go watch the youngest Gson play tennis this afternoon but it's cold and cloudy and I just don't want to go. Then again, maybe I'll take my new racket & bag of balls and get to hit a few with him in between matches. My mood flips faster than those mattresses this morning so I'll give you the final decision tomorrow.

Until then, a few little funnies ~ this is what happens on low traffic days in the shop ;-)

Y'all be good now, ya hear?

Bells










16 April 2014

Wednesday Morning - April 16th. This weekend was warm enough for shorts but I’ve been back in turtlenecks since Monday. That’s okay though.

If I were savvy enough to make one of those ‘meme’ things yesterday mine would have read, “I didn’t go ride my bicycle just because I had an asiago cheese bagel for an afternoon snack but then again I’m glad I did”, LOL.

The oldest grandson stopped in the shop at closing and asked if I wanted to go riding (he has a bike too). That was pretty cool because I’ve been in such a foggy funk for two days I was just planning on staying open another hour because I didn’t have anything else to do. The sun was shining, the temp was comfortable enough Mushy didn’t get overheated and I was especially proud of myself for conquering ‘that overpass’. And yes, Mush still has 19 toenails; no basket dismount tragedies this time.

ATF is doing okay. I still haven’t stepped on the scale but my other measurers (snug jeans, bracelet, rings, how I feel) are all the same; my second snug jeans felt a little looser in the thighs yesterday so I have to conclude more F2M conversion going on. I slept well last night and am proud of that because I am trying to decrease and eventually eliminate taking Xanax. I’ve taken it a long time so I’ll do it slow.

Deciding to ‘date myself’ has been very revealing during this ‘getting to know myself’ phase. Finding myself stumped answering the ‘date question’ of ‘share 20 things about yourself’ certainly illuminated Cutty’s remark before passing, “I feel after all these years I really don’t know anything about you.” I’m not so sure this is due to a lack of self attention as it is just age and evolving leads to a different frame of mind. And I had to laugh that once I answered those questions and updated my ‘practice profile’ on ‘match’ I stopped getting winked, LOL. I think I scared the computer. Haha. But that’s okay. I recognized I’m just not ready for any heavy emotional lifting right now - I don’t want to have to take care of anyone else’s heart; I’m still caring for mine.

I noticed this is the second year in a row that right about Springtime I find myself considering going ‘low carb’ for a change of WOE. Ironic as this is the edge of all the great fresh veggies and fruits to soon be hitting the Farmers Market. I’m thinking there is some reaction of ‘coming out of winter hibernation leads to wanting to leave those pasta / noodle / biscuit warming comfort foods behind.’ So I work all this out in my mind and assure my body it’ll be able to have it’s spinach and eat it too; we’re just going to back off the tortellini for a while.

And as they say in Looney tunes… that’s all folks. Hope you’re having a great day where ever you are. Thank you for stopping to visit me and know that I read and cherish every single comment, support, advice and suggestion you leave for me on my journals. I am truly blessed and feel the love. You’re wonderful friends.

Bella


Doesn't this look wonderful? I'm trying to get a bid from the carpenter on putting one in my church.

Weigh-in: 180.0 lb lost so far: 105.0 lb still to go: 0 lb Diet followed reasonably well
   (9 comments) on diet Make Peace with Myself   steady weight

13 April 2014

Sunday - April 13th and I’ve decided I’m going to date myself. Not ‘date’ as in “Yes, I was a little girl the day Armstrong walked on the Moon” but if you know I meant Neil not Lance you just dated yourself as well.

I’m referring to dating ala a form of courtship which may include any social activity undertaken by, typically, two persons with the aim of assessing each other's suitability as a partner. I copied that off Wikipedia and am so relieved they added the ‘typically two persons’ so I still feel semi sane.

I didn’t date that much before marriage so I’m basing this experiment on what I’ve read or seen on TV. That phase of a relationship where everything the other person does is cute and they are the most interesting person in the world and liked and accepted unconditionally. Moreover, you can’t wait to see them again.

I came to this decision last night. Friday I was horribly depressed and feeling self destructive though not really sure why. Survivor’s guilt? Some left over crap from the past? I don’t know. All I knew was after stupidly listening to sad music in the shop I wanted to go to some dark and dusty honky-tonk (that’s southern for bar) and have too many drinks while some cowboy pushed me around the floor (southern for dancing). I wanted to feel my sadness while being held in someone’s arms.

I didn’t - despite my wonderful accepting friend Kathy supporting and encouraging me. The bar within walking distance doesn’t have dancing and when I started crying just thinking about it in the kitchen I knew I needed to stay home and tend to myself.

So I googled ‘dating guidelines for widows’ and of course Match.com came up on the first page. I thought ‘well, can’t hurt to browse for free’ but quickly discovered *I* had to answer a few thousand ( or so it seems ) questions first. Even harder was drafting a headline.

I KNOW - ME? The FS Queen of endless rambling journals with writer's block? WTF? This was part ONE of me deciding I needed to date MYSELF for a while. If I can’t define myself online ~ how am I supposed to do it in person?

But I finally managed to get enough words to fulfill the mandatory word count without pulling that junior high school trick of repeating ‘really, really’ and ‘very, very’ every other sentence. I think my headline reads, “ I have NO idea What I’m Doing”.

IN the event you are on Match.com ~ bless you. That takes a lot of guts.

Surprisingly, it seemed every bio I read included “looking for a special lady to love.” Even more surprisingly as I found myself skipping thru them while responding out loud, “Sorry, kiddo, but I’m not looking for lo….”

What? NOT looking for LOVE? Who ISN’T looking for LOVE? What’s wrong with me?

My thoughts flashed to the current ‘Love Yourself’ challenge and faster than it takes to type this the pieces fell in place. I’m struggling to love myself right now because I still need to get to know myself again and that includes LIKING myself as if I’m dating me. Rather than pursuing another person to validate me with that unconditional ‘gee, every freaking thing you do is so darn cute and loveable you’re instantly forgiven’ emotion that usually shows up during the honeymoon of dating - I need to do that for myself for a while.

So I decided last night and woke this morning with a plan to date myself. I’m going to pamper and do nice things for no reason. I’m going to surprise myself by not over thinking the things I want. I am going to shut OUT that voice of reason that asks ‘really, another blouse.. don’t you have a closet of them already’ or questions my aptitude to do and try things. If I wake myself at 2am I’m going to be happy I did just for the joy of spending time with me. If I stand at a store and pick up then put down the same object ten times because I can’t make a decision, I’m going to think I’m just cute as a button. I’m going to smile even when I’m alone. And I’m going to express myself out loud even when it sounds silly.

And maybe with that ~ I will be open enough to love myself to the point the point that reading the bio’s that include ‘looking for love’ doesn’t make me flinch.

Thank you for stopping to visit with me. Happy Sunday.

Bella

PS - as this is FS I will add that ATF is going really well; no 3M and I haven’t stepped on the scale in two weeks now and I’m fine with that. I use my ‘snuggest’ jeans, the bracelet on my left wrist and the way I feel and move to measure that I’m still converting fat to muscle. I was going to take a ride on my bike today but it’s raining so Mushy and I are stretched on the bed with watching the rain thru the open back door. A pot of pork roast, bean and veggie soup is simmering in the kitchen. Life is good today.




10 April 2014

Thursday - April 10th - and I'm thinking about declaring Bellawood a Sovereign State and inventing my own weight loss calculation system. Something in between imperial and metric math with a little bit of love and insanity stirred in and topped of with immeasurable appreciation and forgiveness.

For example, I think I'll start weighing in here daily based on what I 'feel' I weigh that day. Some days I feel so light, limber, and energetic I'd swear on a stack of pancakes I've reached my original (but now seemingly unattainable) goal weight of 150. Other days I feel so fatigued, stiff, and heavy I'd swear I went back to my original start weight of 300 overnight. And sometimes those days happen in the same week. I'd drive the FS scale remark application crazy and probably end up on the 'featured' page too.

Maybe I'll record my food the same way. Give myself a lower recording when I eat mindfully to meet hunger needs only. When I eat too much of something, even if it's a low calorie but high quantity soup or salad, record it as triple. If I eat to beyond hunger and find myself waddling around like I'd just left Sizzlers it costs me in RDI points.

And how about 'activity'? I was thrilled to be able to haul TWO cases of water at the same time this morning as well as felt my heart race when I realized I did NOT have to unbuckle the seat belt to make a drive thru bank deposit ((and the interior of the bank was closed lest the question of 'parking and walking inside' be asked)). That outta be worth more 'energy out' points than walking two miles on a treadmill, shouldn't it? Starting to follow me with this logic?

I'm just thinking of another method to keep this 'way of life' fresh and avoid it running out it's 'shelf life' and expiring as I am approaching my 'two year' anniversary. I've done it before. The free fall roller coaster of the initial weight loss gradually morphs into an elementary school 'merry go 'round'. It's not that I don't 'like' eating and feeling healthy; just somewhere in me is that 'thing' that gets complacent and stops paying attention. I don't want to start taking myself for granted at this phase of my journey. Well, not just this phase, ever. But how to keep the focus going day after week after month after year?

This topic caught my attention recently when I stumbled across an internet article sharing Kirstie was returning as the XBrand diet spokesperson so I guess Valerie is taking a break. Both have regained at least 30lbs since their SP days and Val was on a talk show recently stating quite adamantly that we as women should give each other a break about our weight.

So let me confess the cheeky things that went through my mind:
** I'm so glad I'm not famous enough to have had my FIVE weight losses and regains publicly splashed across tabloids like Kirstie and Oprah; at least my humilitation was only on a local and personal scale (pun intended)
** If the rich and famous can't keep their weight off with private cooks, trainers and a full entourage how are normal folk like us supposed to do it?
** Gee, I don't remember either of you being so kind and accepting of weight when you were showing off your slim body for the commercials
** Did y'all regain the weight while still eating Xbrand prepackaged food or did it lose it's allure along the way?
** Did Xbrand offer a back up plan to help deal with the overeating, binge eating and other things that lead to weight gain?
** Okay, you broke your foot. For that I'm sorry. Does that give every injured person the right to gain? What if it's a permanent injury? Is this parced out like insurance ala X amount for fingers vs XX amount for a whole hand.

That's enough. You get the idea. As a lifelong yo-yo dieter (( or as some people think me, just an out & out Yo-Yo period - I'll say it first WAYNE)) I've chased the elusive magic beans too. Every plan worked for a while especially when I've been morbidly obese and the first 50lbs practically FELL off I always felt I was right on track with whatever plan I chose. Even the first 100lbs has come off in under a year every time. Magic, right?

Wrong. I've been through this enough times now to speak on an expert mode; I've earned my stretch marks and saggy skin. I've paid my dues.

Everything can work for anyone for a while. It's like a new relationship, brand new car, or that great pair of shoes that felt so great when first tried on in the store.

In a way, it's like marriage. Once the honeymoon is over... then what? There are a ton of us (another pun intended) who've heard the groans of those closest to us whenever we've decided to try 'another diet'. Yeah, yeah, I know... it's not a diet, it's a lifestyle change. Call it what you will, label it however it works, but it's a diet. One we have to stay on for the REST of our lives or we'll end up on the cover of our own local in-house National Enquirer too.

I am doing that 'love yourself' challenge because I have this voice in my head that tells me of all things I do really, really, really well (such an ego) keeping weight off and being healthy on the 'long game' isn't one of them.

Well, it's time. It's MY time. It's MY TIME to GET IT RIGHT.

And I will do whatever insane off the charts makes no sense seems silly thing it takes to keep me coming back, paying attention to my food, loving
myself, and trying to live healthy for the rest of my life. Even it if means seceding from the nation for CICO tracking purposes.

Bella













09 April 2014

Wednesday - April 9th. Nearly four days of quiet self reflection has felt like camping out at the 'all you can think' buffet of life. I have several different topics brewing but am going to start with the one closest to me which is: my grieving is taking on a more balanced perspective.

Grace is of the opinion that 'dreams' are how we defrag and reboot our brains at night. It takes all the things of which we are aware and those subliminal things of which we aren't and clears SOME of the slate for another day. And much like reading a horoscope or fortune cookie ~ dream interpretation is merely a guess based on the experiences and emotions we bring into them.

For the first few months after Cutty's passing I'd dream he was still alive; he'd died, but came back. And I was panicked trying to get his clothes, get him back home, figure out what happened and why, etc. Lately my dreams have been that he is back ... he did die and returned .. but the panic is gone, the Mr. Hyde personality of his (one we all possess) is in full throttle, and it's a little stressful.

Very revealing was when a person asked me in one of my dreams the other night, "When are you going to start living YOUR life?" my answer was, "I was just on the verge of it when he came back." I am beginning to wake from those dreams relieved instead of mournful. Progress, not perfection.

While I'm not always crazy about this phase of my life - being not only 'lonely' but being the only decision maker and yeah, having to accept the responsibility of the decisions that fail without a fall back plan to blame someone else - I am recognizing how much of 'me' has been hiding the past few years.

I don't blame him for that - I blame myself. In effort to avoid confrontation I'd just 'go along' in whatever direction it took to avoid an argument.

An example would be 'dressing up' for the shop. If I'd strapped on these ridiculously high heeled sandals, perfume, makeup and a pretty dressy outfit as I am today, there would have been questions. "Who are you dressing up for out there?" Saying, 'No one but you, my darling" was never accepted as the truth.

Why didn't I say "Me. I like the way I feel when I dress up. It makes me feel good about myself"? But I didn't. To avoid feeding his suspicion and the confrontations the 'longshoreman' look (over sized denim jacket over turtleneck sweater over slouchy nondescript jeans over boots or loafers with no makeup and usually a 'cap' became my daily uniform.

And my brain worked like this: day by day the 'life' was being sucked out of me and I felt I had nothing to live for other than indentured servitude so why prolong it by being healthy? I felt like that old joke where the patient asks, "Doc, If I give up fatty foods, smoking, drinking and sex, will I live longer?" and the Doc answers, "Why would you want to?"

Lest this read like I'm turning into some wilting flower, I am not. I pushed back plenty on business, household, finances, healthcare and dealing with 'issues'. It was just, in the midst of all that.... *I* got lost. Me. The one who likes dressing up without judgement or suspicion. The one who likes getting a new 'welcome mat' even though the ugly old brown one refused to wear out. The one who let herself feel guilty or irresponsible to publicly purchase new clothes and instead snuck them in while he slept and pretended 'this old thing? had it for years'.

And I'm beginning to understand why widows mourn for a year. It is within this year I'm beginning to remember who I was, who I am, and who I want to be without allowing the opinion of another to influence me. I feel it is important to take this time to step back and get better centered in my own personality. There are days when it feels like that direction out of '28 Days' where the people in recovery are advised to stay away from relationships. I think Cornell recommends, "get a plant. If you can keep it alive for a year, get a dog. If after two years both are still alive, then you can date."

It could be that it's recommended so that the person in recovery isn't pressured by another person in their life or fooled by the infatuation of 'new love'. This is the time for discovery and it needs proper attention. Time for reinforcing my personality now that I'm older and hopefully a little wiser. Time to remember of all things I'll battle, I'll fight for me the most.

Thank you for visiting with me.

Bells





Weigh-in: 180.0 lb lost so far: 105.0 lb still to go: 0 lb Diet followed reasonably well
   (12 comments) on diet Make Peace with Myself   steady weight

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