Monday, July 25, 2011

Confession, Monday Miscellany and Gratitude

Confession: I have been laughing for a week about Jen's comment on my bomb suit post that the bomb suit made my legs look skinny! If only I could wear a bomb suit around to emphasize my skinny legs! Seriously, every time I pull up my blog, or think of that post, or that day with the police department, I am laughing about my figure-flattering bomb suit. Thanks Jen!

Other miscellany in my head right now:

- I am so over food. It is a pain to figure out what I'm going to eat every day. I need to do a better job with this, because if I don't have a plan in mind, I run amuck. What's that saying? "Failure to plan is a plan to fail." My eating is not bad, but it is unstructured. I should start using again because sometimes I actually wonder if I'm starving myself to death! Other times I wonder if I have found a way to completely circumvent the sleeve and take in 10K calories a day.

- Along those lines, I have to say one of the most striking things about eating/eating issues/binging tendencies etc with the sleeve is that the *amount* of food changes, but the feelings don't. Yesterday I had two falafels from Costco (I don't actually recommend them - they were very dry, even with my pseduo-tsaziki sauce I made with greek yogurt and a little sour cream.). Two falafels: way too much food for my stomach (they look like they're made in mini-muffin pans). Also, since surgery, my sleeve gets very irritable with certain dairy foods, so when I tried to eat the yummy greek yogurt/sour cream concoction, my stomach immediately started rumbling unhappily.

But I was *gonna* eat those falafels and dip, and I did. That's the bingey eater in me. And so I laid there with my overly full, unhappy stomach, feeling every bit as badly as I used to when I put away a ton of food, pre-op. The feelings are the same. The behavior is the same. Only my sleeve restriction stops me from doing what I used to do. Thank goodness for that! But I need to find a way to *mentally* control this, rather than *be* controlled.

Edited to add - I have been rather mopey lately and decided what I really need to is count my blessings. I have so much to be thankful for! I have to be careful of these mopey moods, as I can really get sucked into them. And so, in no particular order, I am grateful for:

- 80 pounds lost! Woohoo! I truly feel so much more alive and healthy and bright and optimistic than when I was luggging around 263 pounds on a 5'3" frame.

- My kiddos. Oh my, they can wear me out, but they are an awesome little crew and they are just really *good* kids (or as I say, at any given time, at least one of them is being a really good kid). I can't believe how much older and more mature my oldest two have gotten just this year - they are 10 and 12 and their maturity just astounds me sometimes. My littlest? :) He favors life with great vim and vigor and passion and enthusiasm over maturity. Just having him around makes you smile - whether or not you're also gnashing your teeth!

- My ex. I don't always have a lot of great things to say about him, but whenever I hear divorce/custody horror stories, I am grateful for him. He shares time with the kids, he loves them and parents responsibly and with care, and we parent well together. I say that divorce with kids sucks, but as far as things go, we've got it about as good as I could hope.

- My parents. From loaning me money to delivering tents to camp out in the yard with no notice (ex seems to have lost my tent that he used last summer - I did not realize this until I had already promised the kids we could backyard camp on Saturday), my mom and dad have pushed, carried and dragged me through single parenting and any other life event going on.

- My friends! Honestly, I am a bit of a PITA, and I frequently wonder how I have been so lucky to make and maintain such wonderful friendships over my life. I have a small, "core group" of friends and I just love them all to death. Cannot imagine life without them.

- My babysitter. I will frequently get grumpy about the lack of activity the kids and babysitter engage in while I'm at work, but truth be told, I am just very lucky with our babysitter. She loves the kids, she is super reliable and always there when I need her. She's a sweet kid who is now living with us and she makes getting to work so much easier. She's been with us for over a year now, and quickly became part of the family.

- My job. I'm just saying that to be nice right now. :) Seriously, I am very grateful for my job and it's good pay and excellent benefits. I do not always love it, but I am always glad to have it.

- My car. What a nice reliable little Saturn I have! I was thinking this weekend about how car payments used to just be par for the course for me and now it seems inconceivable. I'm glad to have a cute little car that runs really well.

- Self-improvement. I am glad to be working so hard on my physical and mental health this year. I am really working a lot on the mental side of what led me to be obese, because I want to reign in my struggles with weight and food issues as much as possible for the long haul. It's funny, and true, that WLS is not magic wand. I still struggle with the same behaviors and obstacles that I did pre-op. It is also true that losing weight does not make you happy (but it doesn't hurt, either!!). I confess that I heard this a lot before surgery and pooh-pooh'd it - knowing that if I just lost weight it would be a magic fix for my life. Of course it is not! I still feel very fat some days, still get lonely, still worry about how my life will unfold, etc. I am *delighted* for my success with WLS, but am accepting that it is not the fix-all I secretly hoped it would be.

- Sunny days! As I sit here listening to the thunderstorm raging outside, dreading walking to the drugstore in the monsoon raging outside, well, I am glad for the glorious weekend we just had. Ugh, Seattle. I love you, and hate you.

There is more, but that's a good solid list for right now. I will just also say that I am grateful for SBUX free tea refills all day, as I certainly get my money's worth while I'm at work. :)

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Feelin' Greaty Cuz I Lost Eighty!

Yeah, baby! This feels goooood. The 100-pound mark is within my sights, and I likey! My body is really changing - I should take my measurements again, and my swimsuit photos. Oops, I haven't taken them for the last two months, since the kids were with my ex on my anniversary date two months ago, and last month I didn't want to subject Kim or her husband, Insanity, to taking them. Then I never got around to taking them at all. But now it will be fun to see how much I've changed! I'm really seeing it in my upper body: collarbones, neck, shoulders, etc. Today I had a nasty, nasty root canal appointment, and I'm home now with the babysitter and kids. When I walked in, our babysitter said right off the bat, "Wow, you are looking skinny!" and the kids all agreed. I feel it, too. There have been a few times during this weight loss process where my body just noticeably changes in a short time, and happily, this is one of those times!

I stopped at Nordy's and bought a couple new bras, too. I noticed in recent pictures that my rather substantial breasts were flumping off to the side again. I want the girls high and tight! I wish I were a lady of luxury who could buy lots and lots of new clothes and bras, it is such a nice feeling. I'm a 38G now - my last bra was a 40G and it doesn't seem like all that long ago that I bought it. I had a moment where I was torn between frugality and vanity: in another brand, I was a 36G, but the one I bought was a the smaller size for more money? Tempting, tempting. :) Funny how my mind works! I went for the cheaper one in a brand that I always love (Wacoal?).

Ah, I think that's all I've got for right now. It is a good day, despite the two-hour root canal. Now I will take a nap and let the anesthesia wear off. Oh! When I was on the nitrous gas, I had a moment that just cracked me up - I kept thinking about what a circular question and answer this was. I am easily amused. I should also point out that I have no nerves about going to the dentist, but after having my children (all drug-free births) I decided that I would be a fool to turn down a legal high, so I get the nitrous whenever possible. (Sometimes when I write this blog, I think about sending myself to some sort of 12-step program, haha!)

Anyway - I was on the gas and had received the shots to numb my mouth. "How's that numbing," the hygienist asked.

"I'm definitely feeling it," I said.

We both kind of paused, then started laughing. I was stoned, so I laughed a little harder, haha. "Definitely feeling it," wasn't really answering the question too well - was I feeling numb, or still feeling sensation? She rephrased the question. "Are you numb?"

I think you had to be there. :) But it was funny. And if I could carry around a cannister of nitrous, I would, and I would recommend it for all of us, too. Now, where is that 12-step meeting?

Edited to add: I am still having trouble commenting on a lot of blogs. It is driving me a little batty. Ordinary Girl Starts Extraordinary Journey, Manda's Life, Waning Woman, today I have tried like everything to comment on your recent posts, to no avail. :( If I follow your blog, I do read them and love them, but the commenting problems have pretty much turned me off from making many comments. I wish blogger would fix it. :(

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Surly Grrrl

I have been a big crab this week. One, I am ovulating (thanks "iPeriod" app!) and we all know this makes me cranky. Two, I have to have a re-root canal tomorrow morning. That's a root canal on a tooth that has already been root canaled. I am in a fair amount of pain, but mostly I am skeered: the endodontist does not know if I'll be able to keep my tooth. I want my tooth! I have a bone infection and bone loss, and we'll just have to see what happens. I consider this very unfair, as I take great care of my teeth. They, however, are fragile and easily offended, and thus have caused me a fair amount of angst over recent years.

To try to feel better, I have been really focusing on my vitamins and supplements. Not doing an especially good job at taking them, but at least focusing on that fact, haha. No, really, I am getting better. It's just that I am so sensitive to them, I dread taking them. I have found that taking my multi- and iron supplement at night is helping, although I still wake up frequently thinking, "Ouch" and "Blech." My stomach, pre- and post-op, does not approve of iron in any form.

Today I had my first BAD EATING EXPERIENCE in a very long time. I oven roasted some boneless/skinless chicken cutlets last night. Granted, I did overcook them a bit. Even my five-year-old tapped on one and said he wouldn't eat it because "you made it too hard." Hrm. This should have been a warning to me. Today, I gnawed on one for breakfast (it really wasn't that bad, sheesh). As I was eating it, I thought, hmm, that's a little dry. My stomach didn't exactly welcome it without open arms, either. But I was hungry, and stoopid, and I ate it.

Fast forward to when I am fleeing down to SBUX to get something to wash it through my stomach. Or when I laid on the floor to make the pain stop. Or when I went for a walk to make the pain stop. Or when I decided the pain was never going to stop. Or a couple hours later when...the pain didn't stop but at least mostly subsided.

Okay. Duly noted. Stomach does not like overly dry meat.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011


Some people lose weight in their faces first, and this may have a tendency to make them look "too thin" early on in their weight loss process. Or they may reveal this hidden bone structure that is just super-glamorous, and they get to enjoy this beauty while they continue to work on the rest of their bodies.

Those people suck. ;)

Then there are people like me: oh, hello, am I losing any weight off my face? Do I even *have* cheekbones? Hrm, yes, I am losing weight from my face, I can tell by the big, wrinkly turkey waddle hanging from my jawline as the weight comes off. (Really - I know I am, I can in pictures that my eyes and smile are's just, well, a long ways to go.)

But I never really had cheekbones to begin with. A friend was just telling me that I have a cute little pointy chin emerging...I present to you, me, as a young'un with no cheekbones and a cute little pointy chin. This is the last day of school - probably kindergarten, with my dear friend Mike.

Anyway - I say this because I continue to notice that my "trouble spots" are my boobs, belly and face - (OH, AND UPPER ARMS - HELLO! Yipes. Holy Batwings.) where the weight is just hanging on for dear life. Some women hate to lose weight in their breasts. I am all for it. :) I really like and appreciate that I am not losing roundness/fullness, but I would happily go back to a time when my breasts didn't pull my spine into a "c"-shape.

So, that's where my remaining 45+ pounds are lingering. My next focus is to work on some stomach muscles and core strength. I am going to want to have a tummy tuck one day, I suspect, and it would behoove me to have some strong muscles under there when I do. I was *amazed* the other day when I realized that I cannot even do one proper sit-up. Here I am feeling so great, and no sit-ups! No tummy strength. It's on the to-do list.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Bombs, Guns, Burns, Bad Flix, Blues - A Good Weekend

Happy Monday! It is sunny here this morning, and I very chipperly walked to the bus freeway station (1.2 miles) and then got off the bus .4 miles early (Thank you, google maps for providing these distances!). So by the time I got into the office, I was all warmed up and ready to go.

A very nice weekend. Friday night, I saw "Horrible Bosses" with a friend. Oh jeez, it was a horrible movie. Blech. But we saw it at The Big Picture, where you can pre-order your mid-movie wine, and also we sat in the front row, which includes comfy ottomans to rest your weary legs. So we stayed. Still a horrible movie. The outtakes at the end were the best part.

And understand, please, that I am pretty crass and not at all pious. But when did movies get so RAUNCHY?? Wow, that was a raunchy movie.

Saturday morning, I did the Seattle Police Department Community Policing Academy. Fun! My volunteer partner and I did this in lieu of a volunteer shift we had planned for the day. Anyone can go to this training, although we heard about it through the volunteer grapevine, since we already volunteer for the police department. Anyway, the training was fun - it was a day-long dog and pony show for the department and I really enjoyed it. SPD has had a hard time in the press the last year or two: all I can say is I've worked with many officers in a professional and volunteer capacity and they have always been wonderful. And after I got to play with their toys have some equipment demonstrated, I have more respect for some of the challenges they face! I have always said I would be a bad cop, because even wearing the bulky radio makes me cranky. Add in all that extra gear, and I would be a raving beeyatch. How do you go to the bathroom??

It was *very* cool to put on the bomb suit, because just the top half of the suit weighs sixty pounds. Guess who got to experience instant regain of all that extra weight I've lost? That was a very cool experience, to feel 60+ pounds back on my frame. Yay me! I have had the opportunity in the past to try on this suit, but passed because I didn't want the shame of it not fitting. No problemo, now. :)

Also, we got to play with a simulator. It shows these video scenarios of responding to a 911 call, pulling over a vehicle, etc. It's like a Choose Your Own Adventure book. :) Scenarios unfold, and sometimes it's a shoot/don't shoot situation. When the cops train, they do their whole spiel - freeze, put down your weapon, etc. When I do it, it's "ACK! Stop that! Oh!" But here's my victory picture - the blue dot is me blowing the bad guy's head off, and you can see me in the very bottom right of the picture.

We also met the bomb-sniffing dog and his handler, both super-cuties. It was a very fun day! I really identified with the dog - he only works for food, he is otherwise lazy and not at all protective or motivated to work unless he's told to do so. He was such a sweetheart it made me miss having a dog. I will have to be careful not to fall into that trap now that we are in a house.

Burns! OH MY! I went to the SBUX drive-thru on my way to the SPD class and they handed me my tea, but the lid wasn't on tight and the cup collapsed in my hand. I was covered head to toe in hot tea!! OUCH!! Thankfully I take my tea with lots of milk: I think that's what saved me. But I still got blistered burns on my inner thigh. OUCH!! I was running late to the class, so I just kind of "uhh, I have to go now..." and left. They gave me a comp card for a free drink. It was a surreal experience.

Finally, blues. We went to see a bad blues band on Saturday night. I didn't like them at all, plus I am not a blues girl. But it was nice to see the venue...I am always trying to broaden my horizons and I had never been to this type of place, so it was good to check it out. Too bad none of us liked the music.

My weight continues to hover at 185. My body is telling me clearly that this is just how the weight loss will go. Lose 5 pounds or so, then hang out at that weight for a bit. It doesn't seem like all that long ago that my weight hovered endlessly at 190, and 195. I am just impatient, impatient, impatient.

One thing from seeing myself in pictures this weekend, specifically watching the replay of the shooting simulator, and some pictures my friend took of my posterior:

Firstly: yay me! I'm looking so much better. Secondly: Hrm, I still have a long way to go. Thirdly: Am I going to need a butt-prosthetic?

Edited to add: Oh, imagine how peeved I was to see my portrait hanging at the art museum last Friday! I had been so clear with the artist that it was private and not to be shown publicly!

Voluptas, 1897
Franz von Lenbach

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Tortured Women (COMMA) and Monkeys

It's not like I don't have men in my life, you know. I have many fine men, just no men that want to do what I want to do, which is let me lay on them while I watch tv.

I'm building the perfect man. I have a pretty good sense of what he is like, and I actually have the parts for him in several friends. Tomorrow, I am having lunch with two of them. Each are wonderfully funny and smart and handsome and...

One is married and the other is gay. Sigh.

I have a habit of collecting inaccessible men, I think. Bummer. But tomorrow will be fun: we are traipsing up to the Frye Art Museum to see what I am calling the Tortured Women (COMMA) and Monkeys exhibit. The museum has a different name for it, but I think mine is more reflective of the artist's work.

My one friend (married) and I wander around to art exhibits fairly regularly. Except for the married part, and a couple other minor reservations - he's sort of the model of what I'm looking for in a man. Smart, funny and handsome. Jeez, I don't think I'm asking too much.

Both men are knowledgeable about travel and art and the world. I am knowledgeable about none of these things. But, I love looking at art, and am a willing student. And both men are well-experienced in my smart ass, uninformed, uneducated opinions, and so, we have a lovely time together. J, my married friend, and I have been planning this trip for awhile, and I was talking to D, my gay friend, about it this afternoon and invited him to join us.

I sent them an appointment for our calendars and it reads:

Tortured Women (COMMA) and Monkeys
(I wanted you to understand that no monkeys will be harmed.)

Mr. J: Mr. D has professed to me a love of both monkeys and torturing women. It has been a busy day for him, what with this confession, as well as declaring publicly in a crowded elevator that a coworker is on “work release,” not “light duty” as we had been led to believe, what with said employee feigning a limp and all.

Anyway. I can hardly beat the man away from horning in on our date – especially since he was just remarking the other day that you are a nice fellow and your new job appears to be draining your life force (I said it was just making you mean – but D’s nicer than I am). The two of you – being knowledgeable about art and travel and things besides raising too many children and researching which bug bombs are best to buy to kill spiders in your spidery new house…well, you won’t need me to have lively, intelligent conversation…but yet, there’ll I be, dragging you down.

I, being an intelligent woman in the sense of knowing how to surround myself with handsome men, am looking forward to strolling to the museum on what will undoubtedly be a beautiful sunny day, each arm hooked through one of my wonderful art beaus. You will not even realize that you are actually pulling me up that damn hill.  J: D. already carries the title of being my Sugar Daddy – please do not try to take this prestige away from him. I simply cannot allow it. You’ll have to come up with something else.

Onward – to the monkeys and crucifixes! Art!

J. has promised to keep the art discussion "down to the 10,000 foot level, or the 'artsy fartsy' level, as we like to call it." I thanked them both for their compassion and ability to dumb down the conversation for me.
Hmm - the point of this post was that I am looking forward to social events of the next couple days. Tonight, I am going to Artopia, a $20 all-inclusive art/food/booze/music extravaganza. So excited! Or at least I was, until I saw the venue where it is being held. Now I'm just as intimidated as hell. Uh, this does not look like a place where I will feel comfortable. I am telling myself that the event itself will not be appealing to the under 25 year old crowd. I sent the link to my girlfriend, who also said OMG. Oh well, we'll check it out. Four of us are going, so maybe there's strength (and confidence) in numbers.
Then Tortured Women (COMMA) and Monkeys tomorrow, followed by Horrible Bosses at The Big Picture, where I can have wine delivered to my seat during the movie. Then on Saturday, it's an all day Police Academy (probably called Community Policing Academy, but I am too lazy to search for the real name). My volunteer friend and I are doing this in lieu of the volunteer shift we had signed up for, since it's a rare opportunity and both of us have tried to make the last few sessions. Saturday night, I'm supposed to...hmmm...what were we doing? Oh - cajun music?
These veterans of Blues and Zydeco bands have come together to make real New Orleans music, firing up the dance tunes and bringing their own brand of voodoo. The dancers dig it, and it's a sound seldom heard around these parts. Funky Nawlin’s R&B. $12
This may not happen, as my friend was trying to rally a group, and only came up with me, and I don't dance, haha. But we'll see.
Anyway, good weekend on the agenda. Kid-free, obviously.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

When I am a Waif-Like Skinny Bitch

who struggles to keep my weight over 110 pounds...who must eat rich, high caloric foods in order to keep my weight from dropping too low...

I am going to drink half and half in my tea all day. Right now, I drink, oh, five bazillion cups of Earl Gray tea a day, with two or three ounces of whole milk. When SBUX is out of whole milk on the drink station, I "force myself" to use half and half. And it is the most decadent treat ever. The rule is that I can't use half and half unless the whole milk carafe is empty - you can imagine how HAPPY I am when I stumble on an empty carafe! Unfortunately, it hardly ever happens: my SBUX staff is much too efficient. It happened this morning. I am a happy camper!

Also, when I am a Waif-Like Skinny Bitch (WLSB), I will drink wine freely and without guilt. Alas, my little banana-tummy can only hold so much food, so I must indulge in the empty calories. What else can I do?

My aunt (and her husband) and grandma are coming up from Missouri/Georgia next month. They are wispy little bird women. I took after my mother's side of the family, none of whom are wispy or bird-like. I am glad that I will not feel like such a gelatinous blob around them this time. Ack, when I look at pictures from their last visit several years ago...well, they are uncomfortable photos to look at. I do not know my dad's family well at all, but I like them. My aunt's husband is HILARIOUS - I just fell for him right away when I met him. He and my aunt are very successful small business owners. He is also a dyed-in-the-wool Republican. I find this amusing in small doses. ;)

I had a reality check this morning. Oh, two actually. The first (and easiest) one: uh, I could stand to dress a little nicer. Now that I am slumming it with the regular folk on the bus every day, I realized that I am quite possibly the most casually dressed on the bus. Me: jeans, t-shirt, Keen tennies. Others: business casual. Perhaps they are the ones slumming it with me! Ok. Well, I am just a very casual person, anyway, but I suppose it really is time to take it up a notch. I'm 45-57 pounds off my goal (my first goal is 140 pounds, but my true goal is to be in my 120s: 128, specifically. However, I have absolutely no frame of reference for this weight range, so it's hard to pick a real goal. It is important to me to get to 140 and a normal BMI, then I will figure out what a good permanent weight is, e.g. the weight that I must force myself to drink wine and tea with half and half to maintain.

Anyway, 45 pounds seems rather doable, yes? Not even as a long-term goal, but as a "let's knock out this last 45 pounds!" goal. I am not quite sure what to do about clothing in the meantime, because it was a bit exciting exasperating to have bought a top for Nancy's birthday dinner that was too big to wear the next time I tried it on. I will continue to mull over the nicer wardrobe. Really, you just feel better with a little bit of glam on. Case in point: two people have told me today how nice my make-up is. Uh, I just put on some mascara. See, my fans are just craving a little bit more glitz from me, if mascara is a compliment-worthy occasion. ;)

I could try a little harder, in other words. :)

Second revelation (you forgot there was one coming, didn't you?). Now that long-since closed doors are re-opening for me, it's time to shove them open and celebrate. Specifically - my weight has long, long been a (self-)limiting factor for me. Oh, I can't do that, I'm too fat. Excuses range from "not being able to fit" to "exceeding weight limits" to "looking ridiculous."

Well, at 185 pounds, I was thinking, I probably don't need to worry about weight limits and fitting into things anymore. It may not always be a comfortable fit, but I would probably fit most places just fine. And I don't think I really exceed any weight limits anymore, either. And I may look ridiculous doing some things, but I am just tough enough not to care.

Specifically, I was thinking of a few things. Today's groupon or dailydeal or whatever is paddle boat lessons. This looks very fun to me. But I would not have done it because I was too big. I love the water, swim like a fish, love to kayak, etc, but nope, even in today's in-box, I ruled that out automatically, even though I found it appealing.

Hrm. It's time to stop thinking like a fat chick with self-loathing issues. It's time to stop selling myself short. There is no reason, except my poor beleaugured checking account balance, that I can't take paddle boat lessons. Also, Kim over at did a "Dirty Dash" last weekend. I have two boys whose eyes would go bigger than moon pies to do something like this. So I automatically thought about taking them to it, but never did I think about *doing* it with them. Until I did. Hey, I would have a blast doing that, too. It's time for me to get off the sidelines. Again, money plays a limiting factor, because for the family, this would be a pricey adventure. I am actually thinking of driving all the way to Spokane in August to let the boys do the "Piglet Plunge" for 12 and under, which is only $5/person.

Anyway. I may not be a Waif-Like Skinny Bitch, yet, but I think it's time to work on adopting her mindset, and letting go of the sad, sitting on the sidelines, mindset of the woman who stopped trying a long, long time ago.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Six Months Post-Op: 78 Pounds Lost (pictures)

Wooohooo! Not sure if I have any profound six-months post-op advice or revelations, so I'll just post this picture now and come back to add text if I have inspiration. For now, I just want to admire the pictures. :)

Thursday, July 7, 2011


Well, it has been a very long time since I was "only" forty-something pounds overweight. What a nice feeling! I am happily enjoying my status in the 260s, 250s, 240s, 230s, 220s, 210s, 200s, 190s, 180s. Plus, it is is a nice feeling to only be a few pounds off my drivers license weight. My license has been a bald-faced lie for many, many, many years! Ironically, I did just go in and update my license with the new address, but the wait to have a new picture done was over an hour. My other option was to drop off the change of address form and have a new license with the old picture sent to me. I picked the easy option. :) I will go in around my next birthday, when it expires, and have a new picture taken.

I have said many times lately that all this weight loss is like "aging backwards." It is, really. Things that used to hurt no longer hurt. Without thinking, I grab the first available parking spot at the back of the lot. I'd rather walk than hassle with looking for a spot up front. When my friend and I started climbing stairs, I was near collapse after 12 flights, now we are meeting to run "a quick 20." I fit in places I haven't fit in a long time: my smaller body is just squeezing in narrow spaces to grab something, move something, etc. Again with the parking, I don't worry about how much space is between me and the car next to me, or grabbing an end spot that leaves a controlled amount of space on the drivers side.

I'm not as tired. I wake up easily at 5:00 or 5:30, usually without the aid of an alarm, and I am ready to start the day. I'm not sweating very much. I naturally sweat a lot, only on my face, which is its own form of humiliation...standing around mopping the sweat off my brow. I did this even when I was thin - it's just part and parcel. But when I was morbidly obese, I did it a lot, and I *hated* it. Now, it's just a minor annoyance to deal with sometimes.

This week, I started riding the bus again. In a cost-cutting measure, I gave up my $200/month parking at my building and take the neighborhood bus. Parking had really become a ridiculous luxury, as the neighborhood bus picks me up 100 yards from my front door and drops me off a couple escalator rides from my office. When I started driving to work, it was post-divorce, when all the kids were consumed by stress and anxiety (or just being his wild self) and I was constantly rushing over to pick some sick kid up from school. Things have settled down now where I can take the bus. I *hated* taking the bus as a fat person. You just know everyone dreads you sitting next to them. I am very touchy, feely with my friends and people I love, but cannot stand strangers mashed up against me. Now, I just easily slide into my seat and don't have to feel too squished.

It is hard to imagine my frame with another 40-something or 50-something pounds gone! I know, of course, I have a lot more weight to lose, but I'm getting into "regular" proportions. Size 10 or 12 jeans, size L or XL shirts. It is a nice feeling. :) I am not thinking extra skin is going to be a huge problem. Things seems to be shrinking up in relative proportion to the weight loss, especially considering another 40/50-something pounds to go. I can see I will have flaps and flabs, but I don't think I'll look like I'm wearing an oversized skin suit.

All in all, it is a time of great celebration and feelings of accomplishment. I am holding my own feet to the fire, because I have been getting lax with both my eating and my exercise. I still have a lot I want to accomplish. But it is a really, really cool feeling to know that I have gotten into manageable territory. That's what ultimately pushed me into the surgery: a feeling of complete and utter despair, an inability to see how I could possibly improve my situation. Now, I just feel like the path rolls out in front of me, ready for me to run.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Freedom! 75 Pounds Lost! Wardrobe Malfunctions!

Happy Independence Day! You know it has special meaning for us this year. :) I've got a lapful of boys right now, both wanting breakfast and my undivided attention, but I'll post some pictures here real quick.

(Boys are off in search of syrup in the mysteries that are our kitchen cabinets right now...)

Hey! I've lost 75 pounds! Verrrry cool. I hope my weight loss is on the decline again! No fancy clipart for that one right now...I have just wrestled facebook to get the family pictures I want to post, and I am weary from the effort, haha.

Oh! I wanted to tell you about my volunteer shift on Saturday. Specifically, I wanted to tell you about my wardrobe malfunctions. :) Ok. You always wear a belt. YOU ALWAYS WEAR A BELT!! You have to wear the police radio on your belt. Period. Did I wear a belt? Uh, no. Completely and utterly forgot. "That's ok," says my handsome MALE partner (emphasis "male" here, because I can endure most weight-related humiliation in front of a woman, I suppose. Neither is my preference, however.) Anyway, "That's ok," says my partner, "the other precinct has spare belts in the cabinet."

Hrm. I've seen those belts, I recollect. They seem to have been donated by young children. I am not at ease.

So, we go to the other precinct, where he sweetly offered two belts from a cabinet. Yes, as I suspected, they are belts meant for Barbie dolls. One of them is marked by a tag that reads "Size 6." That's the BIGGER one.

Well, you can damn sure bet I won't forget to wear a belt again! We ran to Target and picked one up for me, which I donated to the program when I left. Now there will be at least one REAL PEOPLE sized belt in the cabinet, plus it was one with all the rivets in it, so it can fit people of many sizes. And I have to say, either my partner fell squarely in the clueless man category, or he took the paramilitary "partner" aspect much more seriously than I do, because even in the belt section, that man was glued to my side while I chose one out. HAD I NOT SUFFERED ENOUGH? :)

The other ironic wardrobe malfunction was that my wardrobe is pretty damn sparse right now. I selected a t-shirt that I thought would be serviceable, although I knew it, like the others, were really too big to be wearing anymore. Add in a police microphone clipped to my neckline, and I was flashing that poor man all day long. Pardon me while I tuck my boobs back into my shirt, pardner.

Yeesh. But, it was a gorgeous sunshiney day, and as I suspected, the partner was very nice and good-humored and explained that most men do not mind a peep show, even while on duty. We are working together again in August and I will look forward to it. I am rather a shift snob (beings that I, like all rational people, do not like to be stuck in a car for eight hours with someone I cannot stand), so I am happy to have another person with whom I would happily volunteer.

Pictures! Look at my beautiful family. :)

My family and our new home. Unintentional, but not especially regretful, thumb in the eye to the photographer (X)

Fire pit in the backyard. Blake is giving me his "smolder," a la the movie "Tangled." Reid's body is always vibrating with emotion. :)

Big Stuff took off his training wheels, and Mr. Cool is just, well, cool.

Aliya (BFF) and Alli (my daughter) were instrumental in the move, and deciding where everything goes in the cabinets. Most times, they made good choices. ;)

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Home Free!

What a busy weekend! The kids and I are getting set up in the new house, and I LOVE IT!!! It is such a great house. The kids are so happy and love exploring every corner. It is my ex's weekend to have them, but we agreed to keep them with me so they can get settled in. Today, however, I very, very foolishly took on a last minute volunteer shift, so X is picking them up later this morning. (Okay, my thought process in taking on the extra shift was that I have been derelict in working shifts the last several months; I figured I would need a break from unpacking; it might feel good to have a "forced break" in all the moving hulabaloo; (whispering: the shift is working with a handsome man and that didn't hurt in my decision process); etc. All those things are still true: I am looking forward to getting out of the house and getting away from this mountain of boxes and piles of stuff. While this home is big - I have two completely empty rooms, purposes as yet undesignated - the kitchen lacks storage space. I had to haul in a gnarly rubbermaid-type cabinet I generally keep on the patio for storage. It looks out of place in the kitchen, but it will do for now. This morning, I will cook the inaugural meal in the house! (ummm, cereal and milk? No, maybe eggs and bacon with toast.) That is cause for celebration because it means I got the kitchen cleared out and can actually find most things.

Two pounds!! Wowsa, have I ever fought for those two pounds this month. Errr, they are the only two pounds I've lost this month. Yipes. I am chalking it up to stress, my body revelling in it's new "less than 200 pounds" status, and just reason for me to kick it back into high gear now that we've moved into the new place. The first time I stepped on the scale this morning, it actually gave me the 75 pound loss I'm looking for (but had completely given up expecting, haha, after this slow month). However, the second and third times I weighed it refused to show me any more love. Neurotic, anyone? Yes, I did say the second and third times I weighed. And if I go back in that bathroom to take a shower and step on that scale and pick up the 75 pound loss, you can damn well bet I'll come back and change this blog. ;)

Okay! Lots of pictures coming later today or tomorrow. I've got the camera charging up because I am going to have X take our picture in front of the house before he takes the kids. This occurred to me simply because he was a handy photographer - I meant to have our nanny take the picture yesterday, but it slipped my mind. As I've been putzing around the house this morning, it occurred to me that it's a little bittersweet to have X take our family portrait without him in it. Not that I want him in it, I mean, it's just a little "thumb in your eye" to him. Oh well. That wasn't my intention and I really just want a picture of me and the kids in front of our new home, so I will ask him to take it. He was very kind, getting us all moved in here and getting my KING SIZED BED (YAY! Angels singing...) and the boys' bunk bed set up for me, my absolute nemesis tasks. He hired a mover friend to help, and he even paid for the truck and the friend. This was very cool. I am not sure how I will pay for it later. He mentioned taking it off what he owes me, and I didn't dare remind him to pay his share of our nanny this week, after he had worked so hard. We will sort it out later. I didn't want to spoil what was a very nice amicable-divorce day for all of us.

Oh! I took the training wheels off my five-year-old's bike yesterday! It has been a big weekend! He has not needed the wheels forever - I had those suckers adjusted as high as they go, and one of them was even bent where it wouldn't touch the ground. But he clung to them like a howler monkey, refusing to allow me to take them off. Yesterday, he told me "Mom, I need my training wheels off so I can race Blake." He asked me to come push him to get started, and never looked back from there. Later, he summed it up best, "Oh yeah, I'm awesome!" True dat.

I just have to say, this is a brand new chapter in my life. I am nervous about handling it all on my own: higher rent, increased expenses, YARD WORK...but I am beyond excited. It is just such an amazing feeling. The kids have been all over me this weekend with hugs and kisses...everyone feels the positive change in our direction.