Friday, February 08, 2008

Weight Watchers

I must admit that I've become one recently. No, not attending meetings at Weight Watchers, rather I've been stepping on the scales a couple of times a week. I know, I know, I shouldn't do it, but it's almost like I'm enjoying the gambling buzz that comes just before you step on that scale. Will this be the morning I hit the jackpot?

Come oooooon lucky number lower-than-last-time!

This morning was a bust. Let's say, if I was playing at a casino, the house'd own me. And if it was in a sleazy movie, the casino boss's underling, with a lascivious leer and bit of wink-wink-nudge-nudge, would offer to come to some sort of arrangement to help me repay my debt.

In that moment when I saw the number flashing on the little computer screen my innards went nova. This was way beyond throwing myself on the floor and having a tantrum. My inner weight watcher picked up the scale in my mind and threw it against the wall and then when that wasn't good enough she kicked it around the bathroom a few times, then lofted it out the window. Of course, being an imaginary scale, it didn't break after falling two floors. It merely continued to flash that stupid number at her. Bastard of a thing. Need to get a batter imagination!

In reality I stomped out of the bathroom, saying some awful things to myself and the scale in equal measure as I yanked my clothes on. At one point I blurted out, "That can't be right!"

"What?" asked Alaskaboy in all innocence.

"The scale," I whined. "It says that I'm 227 lbs. That CAN"T be right!"

In his quiet way, he didn't respond with words. He walked over to the bathroom and jumped on the scale himself. He was up three pounds from yesterday.

Funny that. We both ate the same meals yesterday, except I had an afternoon snack, and he had an after dinner one. Also, as Alaskaboy reminded me, the last few days we've been eating vegetarian but yesterday we had a burger combo for lunch.

To scales everywhere, but mine in particular, I say this!

This morning's reaction, and number, is why I'm feeling a mite foolish. I know all this about the scales. I know how untruthful they are. I've known for years. And yet still when I'm feeling unsure of myself or in need of self castigation or an excuse to give up, I resort to my bestest enemy.

I don't need some number on a scale to tell me I feel good about myself. In fact, it usually ends up making me feel the opposite. By buying into the lower number good and higher number bad mentality I'm hurting myself, in a big way.

Last night on our walk, I remarked to Alaskaboy how much better I'm feeling. My legs feel stronger. When doing laps of the courtyard, I used to be puffing and ready to stop by three quarters of a mile. Now, I'm ready to keep going when it's time to stop at a mile. In fact, last night we did a mile and a half, and I still felt good. This is a huge improvement in just 15 days.

Yet, I chose to ignore that sense of achievement and health and headed straight for the scale this morning. I think in some corner of my mind I was thinking that that level of feeling great had to have transferred to an equal result on the scale. No, no it hadn't. But if I hadn't taken the time to sit down and think it through, and without my husband's insightful responses, I'd probably be sitting here plotting ways to stuff myself stupid.

And this is the point, once again, that I realise I need to ask him to hide the scales once more. I can't ask him to throw them out because he does have a healthy relationship with them and so will I have eventually. But at the moment, I'm using them as both a crutch and a flagellum, so away they go. I won't be bringing them back out until I finish my one hundred days challenge...and perhaps not even then.

I feel great. I'm increasing my cardio endurance. And since the walking at the moment is toning my lower body quite nicely, I'm also hoping to start a light upper body training program when we get back from our Pennsylvania holiday. My tastebuds have mostly returned. I'm sleeping through the night. I'm happy. I'm loved. I'm writing again.

All of these things matter.

The scales don't.

Well, whatta ya know. That was a different kind of weight watching. I watched myself measure up the scale in comparison to other means of judging health, and I picked the one that carried the most weight.

Sorry, couldn't help the pun.


Tuesday, February 05, 2008

I don't need no stinkin' ice cream cone!

I've been hankering for ice cream in the cone, for several days now. We've had the ice cream for well over a week, but no cones. Today, I remembered to chuck some into the trolley on the way to the checkout.

A delightful dinner of grilled rib eye with spicy lentil and veg hot pot on the side made me want to eat until I was full. But I knew I had more delectable things to come, so I made sure I left room.

To really make sure I was hungry and would enjoy my dessert, I went and cobbled together the post for Marshy's competition. That took me a little longer to accomplish than I thought it would, since me and computer whizbangery no can haz a friendship.

Alaskaboy's slaving away at aerobics while I get the ice cream out of the fridge and grab the box of cones out of the pantry.

My evil taunting backfires on me when I realise that if I open the pack tonight, or any time in the next week, we'll have to somehow eat twelve icecream cones between us by Monday morning. After what's already gotten in mah belly the last few weeks, thanks but no thanks.

After bitching and moaning for a good ten minutes...which mostly fell on deaf ears since Alaskaboy was concentrating on not falling arse over tit like he does if he tries to do aerobics and talk(or listen to something else) at the same time.

Should I make waffles? At 11 pm? Naaaaah!

Oooh, how about some raisin toast and bananas? I love that, it's quick, and we have two really ripe 'nanas that need gobbling up.

Good wifey that I am, I threw in some toast for Alaskaboy as well, and made enough mashed banana for two people.

But the ice cream, I still really want the ice cream! Sliced bananas goes well with waffles and icecream...{light bulb moment} I bet icecream goes really well on top of raisin toast and mashed banana.

Yes. Yes, it does!

And that's a bread and butter plate that it's on. Teeeny, tiny slices of raisin toast over here in the US.


Marshy's Goodies Competition.

1. Brown: A photo of a brown koala, taken while at the Koala Conservatory on Phillip Island during our recent Vacation.

2. Orange: Alaskaboy's birthday cake from last year. Icing is both orange coloured AND flavoured!

3. Purple: If this was closer to Easter I would have bought some purple peeps and taken a photo of me biting into one with the caption "A Purple Peeper Eater" but alas, i must do with a stock photo of one instead. It is perty though!

4. Marshmallow: This is kinda cheating. This is the peeps fun bus that travels around the country. Biiiig Marshmallow peep on top, but it's not really made of marshmallow. Although, the purple peep from number four is, sooo....

5. Cat: Love this book.

6. Sleepin': My dog, Scruffy. Christmastime.

7. M: Loved this Mushroom-bedecked M.

8. W: {sigh} How I miss Bundaberg Sarsparilla. Oh well. Had to soothe my root beer craving somehow, so bought some A&W today.


Sunday, February 03, 2008


My desk sits right next to the study window. This evening, since I made the mistake of wearing only thongs (flipflops) instead of my usual warm socks and shoes, I got chilled. The wonky shower head we have was spraying in its halfhearted way, so I wasn't warming up very much. Off went the shower, in went the plug and down I sat in the tub.

Ahhhh! Nice and toasty. Did I mention relaxing?

Even the rhythmical thump-thumpthump-thump of Alaskaboy's feet on the aerobic step echoing down the hallway soothed me. But, if I was so fine and dandy, why was I feeling lightheaded? Sitting up a little higher didn't help. Nor did having a glass of cold water. That meant I was warm, but not overheating. And then down the hallway came the line. "Are you having fun yet? I know you've been having fun all along."

Then I was having a crying jag. The kind where your eyes are scrunched tight, your mouth is wide open and yet an eeueueeueueeh noise only comes out every other sob or so. I cried so hard I thought I was either going to pass out, or vomit. Neither of which is a good option when you're in a tub full to the brim.

The jealousy and anger transfixed me to the bottom of the tub like a butterfly pinned to a board. I wanted to lash out at something, anything, but I couldn't move under the onslaught of what I was feeling. Most of all, I wanted to be out there with Alaskaboy, doing aerobics.

Who's gonna be my Kathe to encourage me in my exercise? Stars on a chart are well and dandy...but Kathe is so perky and encouraging! What's the fun in trudging along one foot in front of another on boring walks? How can I get my muscles and fitness back? Why is this recovery process taking so long? Where's my confidence gone?

It wasn't until this evening that I truly realised how much my view of myself included my strong muscles and athletic ability. I acknowledged just how much I've been hating myself now that I'm weaker than I've ever been before. I hate being a girly girl. I want to be out there pumping iron and watching/feeling my muscles grow. I feel soft. Soft and flabby and unfit. My body isn't my own anymore and I hate that feeling.

After I stopped crying and calmed down a little, my nurturing side smacked me in the head and said, "wake up to yourself." Just the other day you'd been all excited that you were able to quickly trot down the stairs. Something you haven't been able to do in a long time.

My negative side scoffed at that achievement. Stairs? Pah! Remember when you helped move the queen-sized bed and heavy dresser into the house? And on the holiday you couldn't even carry your two year old niece more than fifteen metres up the beach before handing her off to her father.

Positive me was quick with a riposte. Oh yeah? Remember when I couldn't even lift a frying pan without using two hands or go from the bed to the loungeroom without stopping or had to use the lift because I couldn't even get down the short stairs? And you're knockin' that I carried a 12 kg child 15 metres on soft, dry sand--AFTER walking down to the beach in the first place, then along it, and back and forth to the water several times from where we sat. Need I go on?

Yeah, but--

But, nothing! Stop being so negative about everything!

{whines} But, I coulda been soooo fit and strong and healthy by now! I coulda been using the full on step AND going bike riding and all that fun stuff we'd planned for this year.

{positive side thinks for a little minute} Would you have done half as well with you internal work if you were still completely focused on the outer fitness?

Ummm...I don't know.

Then how about you shut the fuck up?


Friday, February 01, 2008

Here's a poem I wrote this evening.

It was cold out tonight and all my track pants were too dirty to wear for my walk, so I went to throw on my huff'n'puff jeans. You know, the ones that fit me great just last month? Sure they were a little tight the other week, but that's to be expected with being back up to 220 lbs.

{self delusional cackle}

Make that 224.5 as of this morning.

No wonder they didn't do up. Not even the button! I've spent the day finally admitting to a lot of anger I had about some things in my life at the moment, but those jeans tonight? Ugh. My disappointment in myself is very keen at the moment.

I don't have a title for this yet, but hopefully one will come to me in the next few days.

Listen, Stomach, what a load of bull!
There's no way you could be full.
Come on eat another bite,
you haven't finished all in sight.
Peanuts, butter, cheese galore.
In the cupboard there's always more.
Help me bury what it is I'm feeling,
With this second banana I am peeling.
Minestrone slurped by the quart,
means no emotions to be fought.

“You're doing so good,” the voice will say,
“'Cos you walk a little every day.”
But deep down I know that's not true.
The jeans that fit me are too few.
The clothes I wear don't feel quite right,
now they're too short or far too tight.
How I regret my charitable bent.
All that comfy stuff, out it went.
But I never thought I'd fall so far,
to again seek comfort in a jar!

I truly thought I was done with all this
bitching, moaning, vinegar and piss.
Falling back into that dull, old pattern,
makes me feel like a worn out slattern.
Some days too tired to give a fuck,
feeling downtrodden and out of luck.
But then I'm not the only wench,
stuck in this godforsaken trench.
So perhaps I should put down the peach,
and head on back out into the breach?

Girding my loins I prepare for war,
and remember what it is I'm fighting for.
Not for love, nor fame, or even wealth,
but instead for a clean bill of health.
That means I need to always remember,
what I promised myself last December.
Let no one, 'specially myself,
put my feelings up on a shelf.
Even if only in my heart I bare,
my emotions both the foul and the fair.

Funny thing is, I didn't rush right out with the old diet thinking. On the walk I got into a rhythm that suggested the poem, and I hashed out the first verse before I was done. And after writing it all out I realise that I have to be better about having my crying jags or angry fits, even though Alaskaboy is home. I didn't realise how hard I've been holding back these last few days or how much I'd relished the privacy to work through my shit while he was away at work last year.

And to be honest, I thought I had my crap under control. I thought I was beyond the need to work through any more stuff. I believed that I'd waved my magic wand, and even if there might be times my life wasn't full of bunnies, flowers and cute things, that I no longer needed to struggle through any of this.

So, I guess I'm not so much the head of the class as I thought. And those pounds won't magically stay off or melt away even further. Despite all the progress I made last year, I'm still human. I still have times where I need a little extra food to dull what I'm feeling. Good news is it only took me a little while to figure out what I was doing and can now work on expressing and feeling those emotions.

I'm glad I do have the tools in my belt to help me deal with the job at hand. Now, I'm learning how to recognise which tool I need at any given time.
And so the lessons continue.