Thursday, October 12, 2006

Mr Men.

Bear with me, this gets a little rambly.

Anyone remember those Mr Men and Little Miss books by Roger Hargreaves? I loved them as a child, still do love 'em, but they're packed away in boxes for whenever we have kids of our own to enjoy them. My brother and I loved them so much that Mum and Dad even got us some stuffed toys. Mine were Mr Greedy, Mr Tickle, and Mr Funny. Poor Mr Tickle only has one arm, he was so much fun to fling around and spin and whirl and turn in all kinds of acrobatic tumbles. (My brother had Mr Snow, Mr Bump and Mr Happy.) I remember I always wanted to trade Mr Funny for Mr Bump. Mr Funny was a bit poncy with that flower in his hat, and Mr Bump was the colour of my favourite football team.

Now, if I were to be a Little Miss character, this week I'd have to be Little Miss Grumpybum. I know she doesn't exist, but that's who I've been these last few days. It all started on the weekend when we got a debt collection bill, for an emergency room visit last year, that we'd already taken care of by giving the hospital our insurance information -- nearly ELEVEN MONTHS AGO! Thankfully, that got sorted out on Monday morning, and there was a brief return to my usual self. But, that Little Miss Grumpybum, she's persistent.

I was out on my walk Monday evening, and halfway across the pedestrian crossing at the traffic lights I noticed I was starting to hurry. Now, I know this is something I do quite often, and I know why I do it, I just had never fully realised the complete connotations of what I was doing, before. I got through the intersection and continued on my merry way, and sure enough, once I'd gotten off the crossing and onto the footpath, I slowed down to my more normal walking pace. But the damage had been done. I couldn't get my stride back. I had nearly re-strained my groin by going out too fast before I was really ready for it, and I was furious with myself for doing so. There was also the icing on the cake, a stitch! Say hello again to Little Miss Grumpybum. I walked the rest of the walk like that. It was agony. And it showed in my times too. Despite feeling like I was walking at a fairly quick pace, it took me five minutes longer than usual to complete my route.

As I continued around the course I was berating myself for being so stupid and nearly putting myself through the same injury hell I went through around this time last year. Then I stopped doing it when my brain thought of something else. I'd just got done over the weekend reading through the archives of Dietgirl. (The blog of an Aussie woman living in Scotland, and her battle with losing weight. Almost stalkerish, but hey, I felt I could empathise with a lot of what she was saying. Not only the losing weight stuff, but the whole being a fellow expat thing as well.

Aaaaanyway, something she had said at various times had obviously struck a nerve within and I was finally ready to deal with yet another aspect of my weight and low self esteem. (I'd think after twelve months of this psychobabble shit that I'd be out of things to deal with, but nope.) Basically, I've long looked at myself as a second class citizen. This would manifest itself in a few different ways. There was trying harder than everyone else, just to prove the fat chick wasn't lazy. There was not bothering at all, because honestly, who expects anything from a fat chick? There was pretending I was invisible. There was pretending I was still “normal” and not fat in the slightest. That selective amnesia was always fun while it lasted. And then there was the defiance, screw yas all I'll be however I damn well please.

The entry that really resonated with me was when she talked about watching an obese women getting on a train and making a beeline straight for the single seat in the back. How being obese is constantly about calculations of how you're going to move your mass through the day. It's all true, I remember being at my heaviest and constantly having bruises on various body parts, because in my head I was still svelte and didn't have to turn quite so much to avoid objects as much as I obviously did. Then there was needing to move my boobs with my hands when I rolled over in bed. Why? Because I was afraid that it would hurt when I rolled over and they went plonk on the other side, and more importantly I was sure I'd drown in them halfway through the manoeuvre. I could even see the headlines, “Fat Woman Drowns In Own Tits! Looks Like You CAN Have Too Much Of A Good Thing.”

Other entries also got me right where I didn't wanna look just yet. The invisible factor. Dietgirl talked about how she always tried to be invisible. Looks like my subconscious agreed with hers. Second class citizens should be seen and not heard.
Why did I feel the need to hurry across every single traffic intersection whenever there was a car waiting to turn the corner?
Why did I apologise within my own head for my very existence?
Fat, people, the fat!
I know what people are like, especially when impatient or in a hurry. I was projecting up on a big movie screen inside my head, the soundtrack and inner dialogue of what those drivers were saying as they watching me walk towards them. “If she lost a few pounds, she'd be able to get out of my way faster.” “Look at that! She's so fat she can't even walk at a normal speed.” “Move it, Bargearse!” “It's, Waddle McDuck. Waddle faster, fatty!” And so, I'd walk faster. It doesn't help that I'm short, so I feel even more conscientious about trying to hurry across the road at a fair clip. Heaven help me if the light went red before I made it and I'd have to jog. There was the obscure pride that I still could muster up a jog, with good form, but there was the horror of knowing all my bits would be sproinging around with minds of their own.

And so, I nearly strained my groin because I felt like I didn't have the right to walk across a fucking road going whatever speed I felt comfortable. Never mind the fact that even if a slimtastic Barbie jogged across the road the drivers'd still be shitty for having to wait, it's still ALL YOUR FAULT YOU WORTHLESS HUNK OF FAT! And so, I gave myself a stern talking to the whole way through the walk. Hopefully today out on my walk I can be a little less self-conscious when crossing major intersections.

Little Miss Grumpybum wasn't listening though. Especially when I got up yesterday morning and weighed, and it said I was back up to 227lbs. WTF? Two whole weeks of exercising at least 40 minutes a day, and I GAINED two lbs? This is bullshit. Logically I knew I was bloated from the salt I'd had at dinner the night before, and from not drinking as much water as I normally would during the day, but two whole lbs! I waited a while longer, had another pee, and got back on the scales. Ahh.. much more respectable. But, then I was grumpy at myself for the whole day because I'd let those stupid numbers dictate how I was feeling. I know I'm healthier, I know I'm stronger, fitter and there's a whole lot less fat than two weeks ago, but I wanted to not be bloated. I wanted to see 223 or 224 on that scale, since I'd weighed in on Saturday at 225, not fuckin' 227! To make matters worse I was shitty with hubby all evening. In the end I did apologise for it, but I did make progress, I didn't apologise for the fact I was grumpy, just apologised for how I was snipping at him. I admitted I was feeling grumpy, and just allowed myself to be that way, instead of feeling like (as a second class citizen) that I didn't deserve to be grumpy, or that I had to always be as perky as bloody Pixie-Anne Wheatley

Last night at dinner time I nearly reached for the hot Milo, Vegemite toast with a shitload of butter, as well as the banana I'd been craving. But, I stopped myself. Did I wanna put back on those 13 lbs? Had I gone to the trouble of making a yummy, filling and healthy lunch, just so I could scarf down food I really didn't want for tea? NO! And then I realised the reason I wasn't all that hungry was because I'd had a substantial lunch, and a good-sized snack only a few hours before. So, I just had the banana, which is what I really wanted anyway, and some more water. You know what? I was satisfied. So many times in the past I'd eat, just because I thought it was dinner time, and so, I should eat. Who eats just a banana for a meal? That's just nuckin' futs that is. But, normal people do do that. If they're not that hungry, they'll just have something small, or won't have anything at all. It's all about listening to the body! And I figured, if I wake up hungry during the night, there's nothing that says I can't have a snack then anyway!

Little Miss Grumpybum? She got the arse, and I got to sleep really well last night without the unwanted food repeating on me all night long! Woohoo!

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