Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Batten down the hatches!

According to Wikipedia (love), the DEFense readiness CONdition (DEFCON) is a measure of the activation and readiness level of the United States Armed Forces. During peacetime, we here in the ol' U.S. of A. are at DEFCON 5 and the number decreases with the severity of the situation. To put a little perspective on it, during the September 11 attacks we only made it to DEFCON 2. There is no record of the U.S. ever reaching DEFCON 1.

Ladies and gentlemen, Operation Shrink A Bootie is at DEFCON 1. We are at war. Rally the troops and batten down the hatches cuz we're comin' in hot! The target? Fat. Rally point? My ass. Mission? Destroy the enemy and leave no evidence of its existence. Modern day civilian translation? Make fat my bitch!

It has become apparent that all previous methods of defense were inadequate. All ground we may have gained with those tactics has officially been lost. Luckily, the enemy has not defeated us. We will prevail!

In other words, my meeting last night proved as tragic as expected. I'm weighing in at 366. I know, I know. Dressed, after eating all day, water retention, holiday, yada yada yada. Regardless, I've pretty much gained everything back...again. What is my plan of attack? I'm going to treat my weight loss with the same tenacity as I do my education. I am a 4.0 student and refuse to accept less than that. I put my all into my grades and making sure that I excel in this program. I'm going above and beyond the call of duty on most assignments and paying ridiculous attention to detail. I'm focused. I'm determined. I'm driven.

Monday nights I have my new Weight Watchers meeting. Tuesday and Thursday (for this upcoming term anyway) I'll have class from 8am to 9pm (roughly) and who knows when I'll be pimping videos. I'm going to schedule my exercise just like I would my classes and consider attendance points vital to my grade. Journaling and meal planning are my homework. If I want to keep my 4.0 then I not only have to do the homework, but get the answers right. I may not pass every test, but it's the overall effort and understanding of the material that determines my grade. It's the extra credit, the participation, and the willingness to learn from my mistakes.

This is the most important class of my life. I cannot fail this one. This class affects the rest of my life and the success I have in it. I WILL be on the Dean's List! Hoorah!

Monday, December 29, 2008

Ice ice baby...too cold, too cold.

What would this blog be without a nod to the lyrical poet Rob Van Winkle. You, Mr. Ice, with your rag-top down so your hair can blow and your girlies on standby waving just to say hi? The way you rocked a mic like a vandal and lit up a stage and waxed a chump like a candle? Legendary. It's in your honor that I flow like harpoon daily and nightly (or at least in this blog). Check out the hook while my DJ revolves it.

That being said, it's cold...too cold in fact. Oregon got dumped on. We broke 40 year snow records. Not just that, but we had ice ice baby. Six inches of snow, with a 1/2 inch of ice 'wiched between that and another six inches of snow. Nightmare. My car didn't leave the driveway for over a week. My mom and I chained up her Bronco and drove up to Portland to get my sister so she could make it home for Christmas. The trip should have taken 2 hours max; it took 6.5. Six and a half hours of sliding, gut wrenching, white knuckling, exhaustive driving...and I was just a passenger. When it was all over I asked my sister if that meant that she was now our bitch for the weekend. Mom said, "I don't know about you, but she's mine!" Nothing like a white Christmas to bring the family together.

I tried to get to a new weight watchers meeting last week, but couldn't. Now that we're all dug out and sufficiently melted, I'm venturing that way tonight. It won't be pretty. My scale is off its meds and the multiple personalities are flowing freely. One day I'm 330 and the next day I'm 360+. I don't have a clue where I'm at; I'm not sure I ever did for that matter. I do know that I'm going to take whatever number they give me at the meeting and run with it. That's what I need...a stable number. Not a number that fluctuates with the tides. Not a number that gives me false hope of being rescued by a crazy hot lifeguard one day and leaves me crashing against the reef the next. Stability people, stability. Although, if that number is higher than three sixty something I might throw myself in front of a Ben & Jerry's truck. There are worse ways to go.

I have plans, big plans, but I'll save that for after the meeting. I'm off...like a heard of turtles.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Walking in a Winter...

clusterfuck! Oregon is famous for one thing. Rain. We have no football team, no baseball team, we had a basketball team once (I kid, I kid...go Blazers and all that). When you tell someone that you're from Oregon you can expect a comment about the rain (and occasionally a reference to crowbars and kneecaps, but we aren't proud I assure you). Try as you might to convince them that it truly does NOT rain all the time, it is futile. As familiar as we Pacific Northwesterners are with rain, we are just as unfamiliar with snow. Yes, we have Mt. Hood, Mt. Bachelor, and are a hop skip and an eruption away from Mt. St. Helens, but down here on the valley floor? Snow is a rarity. Thus, when it does happen, we freak out.

We don't know how to drive in it, walk in it, live in it. Some people have snow chains, somewhere, but if they can find them, they probably don't know how to put them on. The evening news becomes the all day news as we watch the WINTER STORM OF DOOM 2008 broadcasting live from Sylvan Hill where we have one inch of snow and a 10 car pile up. Schools are closed, roads are closed, businesses are closed. Add ice to the mix and we might as well be undergoing chemical warfare of some sort cuz ain't nobody going nowhere (it's not often that I get to spout double, dare I say triple, negatives in a sentence...freeing, but I feel stupider for having done so).

On Saturday night, one such cold spell struck. Typical winter temperatures in the Portland Metropolitan area are in the 30's, we are currently experiencing the low 20's and the teens. By Sunday morning the ground had about an inch of snow on it. The problem was, all the aforementioned rain that we had before that was frozen solid underneath. I got sucked into the broadcast of ARCTIC BLAST 2008 (I shit you not, it's covered in similar intensity as natural disasters like Katrina around here) and watched as car after car couldn't make it up portions of the freeway. I listened to ODOT, Trimet, PDOT, and any fool stupid enough to walk past news cameras give their take on the impending doom.

Sunday night it only got colder and slicker. My parent's house is on a sharp curve that slants and has large ditches on either side. We're just outside City limits and sanding our road wasn't a priority...until we had 11 cars in our ditch at one time. ELEVEN. Tow trucks slid into cop cars, gravel trucks slid ever so Stars on Ice like between two of the stranded cars without even touching them, and bystanders are falling on their asses like drunks in a 3-legged race. Soundtrack provided by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky.

I haven't left the house since my last class of the term on Saturday morning. The sun is out, but it's still only in the upper 20's out there. The rest of the week promises more rain and snow...and I love it. It's so peaceful and calm when the ground is covered in snow. I wake up in the morning and I know, without even having gotten out of bed, whether or not it has snowed. There is no sound of speeding cars on the road outside, my room is brighter, and everything is so...silent. It all affords me the luxury of being able to do nothing. To think. To sort through clutter and find some sense of clarity under it all. I don't need to be out in it like I did when I was a child; I enjoy just watching it. I don't like footprints in my snow; I prefer it untouched. I don't need hot chocolate with marshmallows; I do need coffee with eggnog in it. I'm no longer a child; just a child at heart.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Five years. 260 weeks. 1,825 days. 2,333,000 minutes.

A few years ago someone I worked with was talking about working on the five year plan for the company. I never understood the "five year plan" concept. The "Where do you see yourself in five years" question has always seemed stupid to me. My life has always been the same and for so long I felt like it always would be. I was never the little girl that fantasized about her future wedding because I never thought anyone would want me. I've never been the person that fixated on what her life could be like because it was too painful to realize it might never be. You see, MY life, was not my own. MY life was in someone else's hands. I would simply go through the motions as if a roll of someone else's dice determined my next move. It wasn't until recently that I realized that I have a say in it. My destiny is what I make it.

I was at Starbucks last weekend before class and as I waited for my Venti Pumpkin Spice Latte chalk full of fat and whip cream (don't judge me) I saw a book. On the cover of it was a de-bossed number 5. I looked closer and it said "Where will you be five years from today?" Interesting enough. There was a paper wrapping on the front that said, "The greatest day of your life is the one on which you decide your life is your own. The gift of life is yours--it is an amazing journey--and you get to determine the quality of it. Live the next five years on purpose. Now is the time. Imagine the possibilities. Go places, have adventures, make a real difference, do what you love. Follow your dreams, they know the way." I got chills. Here I was coming out of a very dark place and these words couldn't have meant more. I opened it up and saw "DECIDE what's next in your life and STRATEGIZE how to get it." Well, fuck me. SOLD! I got back in line and bought the book. It's been sitting on my desk ever since because I wanted to wait until classes were over before getting into it. Classes were over Saturday and now it's time to strategize. To make my five year plan. To live my life on purpose.

The book itself isn't very intense. It's full of inspirational quotes and aids in doing things like determining your values and writing a mission statement. It asks you which 5 people support you the most and would help you reach your goals. It asks you when the last time was that you did something for the first time. An easy enough read if not for all the thought provoking that it does. I'll keep you posted, natch.

"Don't say you don't have enough time. you have exactly the same number of hours per day that were given to Helen Keller, Louis Pasteur, Michelangelo, Mother Teresa, Leonardo da Vinci, Thomas Jefferson and Albert Einstein." -H. Jackson Brown, Jr.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Changing life's aperture setting

Last spring I took a digital photography class at school. I've always had a secret crush on photography, but never had a sassy enough camera to take a serious class. I never had a grasp on terms like shutter speed and aperture, but I thought we'd be best of friends if only we could become properly acquainted with one another. This class was amazing and so is my Nikon D60. I quickly discovered that when I found myself with camera in hand, nothing else mattered but capturing the perfect shot. Unemployment wasn't a concern. Weight wasn't a concern. Life wasn't a concern. My concern, in that brief shining moment, was quite simply...photography.

Among the many things I learned in that class, aperture was one of the most important. Aperture is the setting that controls the amount of light allowed in by adjusting the size of the hole it passes through. By adjusting this setting you can help control the depth of field. More plainly put, you can control which part of your photo is clear and which part is unclear. You can bring out of focus the less important aspects of your composition. If the elements right in front of you are what you feel the focus should be and the things in the distance are of lesser consequence, then you can adjust accordingly. There are other factors involved in achieving depth of field such as lighting and distance (and possibly alcohol), but aperture is as amazing as I'd always dreamed it would be (my professor would be so proud).

I've had far to wide a depth of field as of late. I was trying to focus on everything and lost site of what was important. I've been depressed and barely able to get out of bed in the morning. If not for the intense pressure of school, I'm not sure I ever would have. I created the illusion of happiness most of the time, at least for the people close to me, and it eventually got to be too much. Just when I was on the verge of breaking, there was a family dispute that pushed me soundly off the edge. I couldn't stop it. I couldn't control it. I couldn't snap out of it. I had a complete breakdown. I, quite frankly, was scared I wouldn't make it out safely. One day my mom even walked in during a right proper meltdown. I was sobbing uncontrollably and she just hugged me (we're not much of a hugging family what with being Dutch and all...er, the Dutch are habitually unaffectionate). I said things I shouldn't have. Not hateful, just things I know scared her. I said things I've never verbalized. I said things that I needed someone to know for fear I'd explode.

I'm better now. Though I was without it for a few weeks, I've managed to get more unemployment money thanks to the extensions signed by George W. (bout time you did something smart). I should have money coming in for quite a little while if all goes as they tell me it should. I'm still a video pimp on the weekends and I still hate it, but it's slightly less agonizing for the time being. This term is almost up at school and I'll have 3 weeks to recoup before the next battle begins. I'm still on the prowl for a job, but still hoping to find something that will work with my school schedule.

So now is the time to adjust my aperture setting. To find out what's most important to me and make that my focus. I think I need to focus on what's right in front of me and take things one day at a time. As of right now, my weight and my education are most important. I may not be able to be a fanatic about losing weight with the time constraints of school, but I certainly need to make the two mesh come January. Everything else will fall into place. So, what's your aperture setting? What are you focused on?

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Depression, it's what's for dinner.

I'm sinking deep. Just trying to claw my way out of it.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Would you like fries with that?

I realize that the job I've taken could be worse. I realize that I could be pushing fries as an aside to burger consumption. I could be smelling like fast food every night as I depart or, God forbid, spending my meager duckets on the very food I'm slinging. Nay, my job? I get to work with Gerard Butler every night. I get to watch movies...even if it is Shrek over, and over, and over, and over (I could quote it line for line and probably act it out in shadow puppet theater. I shit you not). Movie stars pass before my eyes one after another, after another, after another. I? I am P.R. for 75% of Hollywood as I sing the praises of their latest masterpiece while assuring our guests that yes, in fact you CAN get 2 popcorn, a soda, and a candy for just a 1.99 more. Why, I'm a goddamn movie pushin' prodigy.

aaaaand CUT!

Who are we kidding? My feet hurt. All. The. Time. I wake up? And my feet hurt. I got a really expensive pedicure with my sister on Saturday as a late birthday gift to her, but I could have given that woman my first born after how much better my feet felt after she was done with me. Then Sunday I was back at work and now they hurt again. I'm anxious for hours before I have to go to work because I fear that I'll screw something up or that I'm not learning everything I need to know to be in charge of these kids in a few weeks. I walk around in pain and act like everything is OK. I smile at guest after guest and try to pretend like this isn't the worst job I've ever had. I try not to think about how I once made more money than my parents and now I'm living under their roof and barely able to pay them rent. This isn't a crack on my parents, it's just the truth. They work hard and aren't paid enough. Period. I think about the work I did before and how easy it all was for me and can't help but realize that I work harder now than I ever have and it's for $10 less an hour.

I'm a week into my new McCareer. On my second day on the job I was standing there learning something with the manager and a "regular" (as I'm told) came in and during conversation said, "Are you guys hiring?" Then with a look of disgust added, "Oh, it's not for me. It's for my daughter. I make WAY too much money to ever work here." I wanted to jump over that counter and body slam her smug, self-righteous little ass right there in the Previously Viewed section. I thought "Look, Bitch, I used to, too. Shit happens. You don't KNOW me. You don't know why I'm here or what my circumstances are. Don't judge me OR my McJob." I politely smiled and handed her her movies, "Due back Sunday by midnight. Have a great day. Whore." Ok, so I didn't call her a whore, but I wanted to.

Thursday I managed to squeeze in lunch with a friend. I love her to bits and hadn't seen her in ages. We used to work together and after I got laid off she kept me abreast of all the office gossip (until they closed their doors and she got a new job). We sat eating burritos and the like as we caught up on everything. Then I noticed a couple sit behind her (facing me). They were both in bright red and black and you couldn't help but notice them what with them looking like the wonder twins. Then another guy sat down. He was kinda hot and he, too, was dressed in red and black. Then a fourth guy...red and black. I looked at their outfits closer. You gotta be f'n kidding me. What kind of kharmic mishap have I undergone to have FOUR Bally trainers sit next to me while I chow down on a burrito the size of a small child. It's a cruel cruel world.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Oh how the mighty have fallen.

The question becomes...how much further until I hit rock bottom? Cuz seriously? I can't take much more. Before delving into the goings on of the last month (or is it two now?) I should first apologize for my leave of absence. I do realize how rude it is to reel you in and then leave you dangling on the hook. So, uh, sorry...heartfelt even. I'm ashamed.

After my last entry my scale truly developed a Sybil like personality(ies). Could it be resolved with a new battery? Perhaps. Have I had time to get one? No. The combination of scale psychosis and starting school has left my diet ventures stale. I have not been to the gym since the Enell made it's first venture out in public. I have not counted points in, hell, I don't even remember. The only thing I have going for me is that I'm maintaining...or at least I think I am what with the scale and all.

It's at this point that I feel I should explain why school is kicking my relatively ginormous posterior. I am in the Graphic Design program at a local Community College here in the good ol' state of Oregon. One would see "Community College" and think "Psshhh, it's a Community College, how hard can it be?" Well, I assure you, they don't F around here. Graphic Design is highly competitive in Portland and you have to be good, nay, brilliant to succeed at it. Getting a C average won't get you a job in this market. My school requires you to get a B or better to continue on in the program. The program is highly structured and most classes are to be taken according to a very strict timeline. If I were to get under a B in, say, my Intro to Typography class, I would have to wait an entire year to be able to take it again and continue on. But wait, there's more. The grading scale is 5 points higher which means to get an A I have to get 95% or higher and a B is 85% to 94%. We got our midterms back yesterday. I missed one and got 97%. My new friend that I have all three of my design classes with missed 2 and that dropped her to a 93%. She got a B. The pressure (some placed upon myself by myself) is enormous. The projects are very time consuming (especially if your goal is perfection) and I'm not JUST taking the three Graphic Design classes required this term. I am also taking an art class and a business class. I'm 14 credits deep, again, and drowning.

On top of that, I got a McJob. My unemployment runs out in about 3 weeks and any and all interviews I had in the last month didn't get me anywhere. I sort of realized that a full time job in the capacity that I was once familiar was not going to be possible as this program in school progresses. Not all the classes are offered in the evening and I will have quite the job juggling conflict at that point. So, aforementioned friend from classes suggested I call her friend that works at a well known video rental establishment and the rest is history. I am now a movie pimp. I've gone from $19 an hour just 8 or 9 months ago to $9 an hour (minimum wage in Oregon at this time is $7.95 I believe). Oh, but I do get all the free movie rentals a girl can handle. Like I have time to watch movies. You can file THAT in the Comedy section. I've never worked retail and never had a job that involved me being on my feet the whole time. I've only been working for a week and though I don't yet have anything resembling love for it, I know it's a sacrifice I've had to make (among many) to be able to get my degree.

That being said, I'm depressed. I feel like I have lost everything. I'm no longer dating (it just kind of fizzled out once we both got busy), still living with my parents, barely paying my bills and not sure how I will after this month, and still over 300 pounds. I'm 32 and doing nothing but going backwards despite my valiant efforts. I have to find a way to turn this around. Rock bottom is no place for a fat girl. The climb back up is likely more than she can bear.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008


Last night was the first episode of the new season of Biggest Loser. Feeling inspired by their double digit loss after double digit loss, I decided that I would kick it up a notch at the gym today. I also decided that I needed to dress appropriately for the battle and reached to the back of the drawer for the Enell Sports Bra that I bought four years ago. I've tried it on a couple times, but have never worked out in it because it makes my typically robust tatas look like one flat as a crepe uniboob which results in my gut looking even bigger. The twins have never ridden so high as when encompassed by an Enell.

I got the Enell after Oprah touted it as her favorite sports bra ever. After promising that your girls wouldn't move an inch in this thing, I jumped online and ordered the most expensive bra I've ever owned. When I got it I tore into the package and swore I heard the Hallelujah Chorus as rays of sunlight shown upon it. It was the bra of all bras. It fastens in the front and must have a good 20 hooks to hold back the flood gates. I slipped into it like a vest and tried to pull it together and get it fastened. Oh there is just no way. I obviously ordered the wrong size. I grabbed the little note card that came with it. It explained that it would be a very tight fit. It gave instructions on how to fasten it, and that once you do get it fastened, to reach down inside and pull the girls up to report for duty. Since when do bras need instructions? I've pretty much had this down since 5th grade. Nevertheless, I followed the instructions and got strapped in. I looked in the mirror and finally knew what it was like to be an A cup, cuz my lovely lady lumps were AWOL! My gaze drew lower to my abnormally giant gut. I stripped out of that bra and refused to work out in it with a gut like that.

Well, four years later, today was that day. I strapped in and headed to the gym. I've apparently lost just enough weight not to be completely mortified as long as I sucked my gut in whenever anyone looked in my direction. As I drove to the gym I felt confident that if S.W.A.T. should call, me and my new flak jacket were ready to serve. This thing is heavy and thick and I felt like I could either stop bullets with it or deflect even the fiercest of X-rays. I also felt like I was losing circulation, but forge on I did.

I started by lifting weights, which is surprisingly easier when you trade in DD's for A's. When I moved over to do the elliptical I chose the harder model. Not all ellipticals are created equal and this one kicks my butt. I was sweating all up in my Enell and was out of breath by the 10 minute mark. I wanted off this thing. I wanted to go home. I wanted to curl up in a ball in the corner and suck my thumb. Then it hit me. W.W.J.D.? No, not What Would Jesus Do...I'm pretty sure Jesus was gifted with a killer metabolic rate and working out is not on his list of things to do. I mean What Would Jillian Do? If I were on Biggest Loser and Jillian were my trainer, what would she do if I were gettin' all pansy on her ass? I imagined her getting in my face and screaming at me. Telling me to keep going. I pressed onward to 15 minutes. At that point I felt like I'd earned an out, but there was Jillian telling me that unless I faint, puke, or die, I better not quit. "Just FIVE MORE MINUTES!" She is so not as cute when screaming in your face as she is on TV and I am wholly confident that I could snap her like a twig if I could just catch her spry little ass.

After 20 minutes I peeled myself off the elliptical and I stood in front of one of the fans to catch my breath and evaporate some of the sweat from my brow. With Jillian on my heels I also did 20 minutes on the recumbent bike. At this point, I no longer cared W.J.W.D. and I headed home. I considered taking the Enell off in the car as I drove, but I didn't want to put out an eye with the force that they'd explode forth with once set free. As soon as I walked in the door I started to release the hounds and I let a out a Braveheart worthy roar of "FREEEEEEEDOM!" I think I need a hug from Trainer Bob now. Yum.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Welcome to Mayberry...er, Aurora.

I've passed through Aurora, Oregon more times than I can count. It's the easiest way to get to Southeast Portland from my parent's house. I stay on the main highway that runs through it and, though I've wondered what lies beyond, I've never deviated from my path. All I really knew about Aurora was that there are a lot of antique shops and that one should never speed when going through it. I've found myself occasionally wondering if it was like the quaint little towns I sometimes see in movies where everyone knows your name and people are actually nice. When I see those towns I, even if briefly, find myself longing for the comforting hug of a nice small town instead of the harsh kick in the ass that the city often doles out.

Until now.

Today I had to go to court for my ticket. I called prior to my allotted time to make sure I had the right date and time (being as how one can barely read what must be the 10th level of a carbon nightmare) and that the address given was where I was supposed to go. Good thing I called. Why no, that isn't where I go. I should go to "this" address instead. The town itself has a population of about 950 people. So, blink and you just might miss it. I drove up and down Main Street twice looking for the address I was given and the closest thing I found ended in 10 not 20 and it was the American Legion building. Well, that can't be it. That's not a courtroom. I went to the building that matched the address on my ticket (which was also the Police Station). I felt dirty just looking at this place. It was gross and run down and made me feel like I needed a tetanus shot to enter. I walked into the musty smelling front office of the Municipal Court building, explained my dismay and was directed back to the American Legion building. She told me that she was also the Court Clerk so she'd be over there soon. I suddenly found myself wondering if this Municipal Court building/Police Station also doubled as the General Store, Post Office, and local watering hole thus making it impossible to hold "court" in the building that actually had Court in the name. I bid farewell to Aunt Bee and made my way back over to the American Legion building to wait.

Aunt Bee eventually let us inside, checked us in, and asked us to have a seat. I took in my surroundings and found it all very laughable. Basically, it was a room that probably had a potluck in it prior to court and would certainly have a Ho'down in it just as soon as they moved the beat up desk out, folded back up the tables, and stacked all the chairs back up. I determined that Officer McCrosswalk was there (apparently being out of plain clothes and into full uniform adds like 20 pounds...I'm just sayin'). He was playing the role of Bailiff at today's festivities. Opie was setting up the mics and Barney Fife was trying to work a TV for a reason I still don't know. We continued to wait and then I saw an older lady walk in through the very doors that we did and grab a black robe from Aunt Bee. She walked up to the aforementioned beat up desk and took her seat (20 minutes late, but who can blame her what with running the post office and general store and all). You gotta be kidding me. What kind of parallel podunk universe did I just cross into?

When it was my turn I walked up to the mic at the sad little podium atop a fold up table. She read my heinous charge of "Failing to Stop and Remain Stopped for a Pedestrian" and followed with "How do you plead?" I said, "Guilty sounds good." She asked if there was anything I wanted to say on my behalf before she assigned my fine. I said, "Well, does pointing out that I'm typically an annoyingly cautious driver and currently unemployed do anything for me?" There were chuckles from the "courtroom" and she smiled. She said she wasn't sure, that my record was clean, and she asked how long I'd been driving in Oregon. I said, "Since I was 16 and I'm mumblethirtymumbletwomumble now." She informed me that she'd reduce the fine to $190, but that was the lowest she could go. She didn't even cut it in half. Podunk towns need all the money they can get I guess. People aren't all that friendly in Mayberry anymore.

I called the company I had the interview with last week (no, it wasn't Lucy). They haven't made a decision. She hasn't gotten much feedback at all, actually. She told me that all the big wig (who I'd never met) told her was to keep searching. Not looking all that promising anymore. I'm still in limbo and feeling like I'm about to fall flat on my ass.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Move over baby Jesus, there's a new miracle in town!

I lost 3 more pounds. Let me now put some perspective on the miracle that is this weigh in. First, as you know, I "supposedly" lost 7 pounds last week so I wasn't expecting much this week. Back to back big losses is a rarity in my world. Second, I ate complete and utter gluttonous crap Thursday through Sunday. If you think I'm kidding the list follows:

Taco Bell, Ice Cream

Gelato, Burger King, Starbucks, Chinese Food, Alcohol, Gelato (why yes, I do realize I said gelato twice, but thanks for not pointing and laughing).


Taco Bell

Now that we're all chalk full of perspective, would anyone like to explain just how in the hell I pulled that one off? I feel that next week I'll get on my scale and will suffer a serious gut punch as it screams "Psych!" and I'm 15 pounds heavier. This just can't be. I probably have to change the batteries in it or it's time to move it to a more balanced locale in the room. I just don't deserve that.

There is only one thing telling me that it's a legit and well deserved loss. A little thing I like to call Gastrointestinal Pyrotechnics. If you've ever eaten healthy for longer than a month or two then you know what I'm talking about. You can't dive head first back into greasy, fattening, morally degrading food like that and not suffer the consequences. Your body calls for back up via the morse code that is the gurgling of your tortured insides. It calls into action every available inch of intestine, colon, and bowel with tactical support from the liver, pancreas, gallbladder, and stomach. Together they force the enemy from your body as quickly and efficiently as possible. Obliterated, it seems, from the recesses of ones fat cells.

My body pulled together and saved me this week. I must thank it by being 100% back on program. I think I got a little out of control because my life is in limbo. My future is currently resting in everyone's hands but my own. I'm still waiting to hear from the literary agent. I had an interview for a job I would kill to have (ok, maybe just mame). I don't know what's going on with me and "the boy." I start school next week. I have court for the ticket tomorrow. Yeah, I don't do well in limbo land. Mama likes everything to have order and fat girls have no business doing the limbo anyway.

So, now weighing 323 (or do I), I've officially lost 10% of my body weight. Hoorah, Bitches!

Monday, September 8, 2008

Can I get a witness?

Because when I got on the scale this morning, it said I’d lost seven (7) pounds. Not once, not twice, but THREE times. Though I gave it plenty of chances to change its mind, it still gave me seven. I say take it and run. For all those good at math, you know I’ve lost 34 pounds. For all those good at history, you know this is the point that I always, without fail, she’s nothing if not consistent, QUIT!

So, what will she do this time? That’s an excellent question. One in which I’d like to answer, but I can’t. I’m going to the gym. This is still Sparta, Bitches!

Friday, September 5, 2008

This is Sparta, Bitches!

I’ve been considering changing my name to Antigone because I’ve been feeling like my life is like a goddamn Greek tragedy lately. Still no job, my savings account has been summarily wiped out, ticket, last month’s weight loss has been pretty slow, I may never move back out of my parent’s house, and to top it off I’ve been breaking out in what I can only describe as hives since, like, May. I take a little swig of Children’s Benadryl almost every day just to keep from scratching off my own skin. I no longer have health insurance, me being that of the unemployed, so I can’t really go get it figured out without spending more money I don’t have. Et tu, Brute? Et tu?

The first time I watched “300” I was distracted because I was hold up in my room, in the dark, with the volume turned down to almost nothing, hiding from my psycho roommate (and I may or may not have been distracted by all the abs). My crush on Gerard Butler (he’s since been deemed Matthew’s replacement and is now the desktop image on my computer) was not fully developed at this point and I wasn’t even aware that he was the King of the Abs, er, Spartans.

With nothing else really on tonight, and me actually having control over the remote for a change, I watched it again. Those Spartans, boy, they had nuts the size of small children. You know a guy is testicularly gifted when he is huddled under his shield, giggling like a school boy, while millions of razor sharp arrows are plummeting to the earth around them. Not a lot of people would find that sort of thing funny, but a Spartan? Nothing is funnier than possible death by decapitation.

After watching it this time I felt like I, too, was a Spartan warrior (albeit a softer, gentler, more estrogen filled version). I will make Xerxes my bitch. Xerxes, in this case, being my job status, my financial status, and my fat ass status. I took my butt to the computer and emailed an activewear company that is based in Portland and hiring for a girl of my qualifications. I had wanted to email them earlier, but felt that would be a very awkward interview for a big girl, what with it being ACTIVEwear and all. Well, I’m a Spartan now. I kicked them in the chest and sent them spiraling down into a dark cavernous well.

“Good evening,

Attached, you will find my professional cover letter and resume. Here, you will find a little more. My job search has been bleak and I’m feeling the need to step it up. The things that I feel compelled to say in this submittal will most certainly set me apart (whether in a good way or a bad way I’ve yet to determine). The unemployment office would surely give me a solid swat on the back of my hands for even thinking about typing this, but here I am...typing.

I am a woman that has never shopped at Lucy. Don’t get me wrong, I love your store. I’ve been in there often. I walk in with my sister or my friends and my tactile nature has me touching everything. I put together outfits for them and point out what I think is super cute, and yet, I buy nothing. You see, I don’t fit into anything you have. I am a plus-sized woman and I aspire to wear your clothes. I have picked things out that I tell myself I will one day wear and have almost gotten to the check out line. I stop myself just in time and I leave. I step outside to wait aching for the day that Lucy and I will be BFF’s (I know, I can’t believe I just said BFF either).

The fact of the matter is, I’m losing weight. I’m even writing a book about the experience. All of my dates with Gym have me longing to spend time with Lucy even more as the baggy t-shirts just aren’t cutting it. When I picture my future self doing yoga, Pilates, hiking, and the like I see me doing it with Lucy. When I saw your posting for Office Administrative Assistant I told myself that if I can’t wear her yet...I’ll work for her. So, here I am, writing a completely inappropriate letter for employment in hopes that my humor, chutzpah, and secret crush will somehow work in my favor. If not, please disregard and see attached.


Kelly Anderson”

They'll either think I'm completely crazy and delete it or they'll think that I also have balls the size of small children and they'll call me in for an interview despite my girth. Either way, I'll get noticed. No retreat, no surrender; that is Spartan law!

Note: If the job for Spartan Queen is open and it entails diddling Gerard Butler, I have an updated resume and references available upon request.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Fear does not exist in this dojo.

If you’re like my friend, you believe that Ralph Macchio’s career was cut tragically short (and who doesn’t really?). If you’re like me, you believe that anything worth learning in life could be taught by Mr. Miyagi. “Look eye, always look eye!” Wise words, Mr. M., wise words.

Though pain often does exist in my dojo, fear apparently does not. I did something that I thought I’d never do. Leaving my fear of rejection behind me like a baton meant for the hands of a U.S. Olympic track athlete, I emailed a literary agent. After all the years of people telling me I need to write a book or telling me I need to publish my blog, I’m setting it into motion. I sent the following email to said agent:

“Dear Mr. Literary Agent,

Please do forgive me if my submission reeks of shock and awe as I thought hell would surely have had to freeze over before I submitted a query to a literary agent. And yet, here I am. Initially conflicted with the voice that should come across in my email, I surmised that I should attempt to mimic the one most often present in my writing...intelligence and wit (often also referred to as “a raging smart ass sense of humor”).

My family often hounded me about writing a book, but seriously? They’re my family. They’re supposed to encourage even the most ridiculous of fantasies. Enter November, 2004. I started a memoir/blog about my journey to lose weight (current working title Operation Shrink A Bootie). Having been fat my entire life, I felt more than qualified to broach the subject. Though more a way for me to collect my thoughts and stay focused than anything else, I also hoped that at least a few people would be able to relate to what I said. What resulted was, well, a following. A mini fan club of people that are either inspired or entertained. Now complete strangers (read: people I’m not related to) leave comments on my blog about how much they love my writing, how they relate to what I’m saying, how I inspire them. Though I’d rather have my eyelashes plucked out one by one than admit my family might be right, I’m left begging the question...what if?

There really is no better way to give you a feel for my writing then to let you glimpse into the blog itself. Since I’m not sure how you feel about links to random blogs, I have inserted a few entries below. Though they are in order, there are many entries missing. My hope is to publish my entries in a style similar to a journal. I realize that edits need to be made and I also realize I should stop posting to my blog if I am serious about publishing it in something I expect someone to actually pay money for (buying the cow, free milk, yada yada). I do hope that this is the beginning of a beautiful relationship and that some day I’ll be afforded the opportunity to thank you in a cleverly crafted “Acknowledgements” page.

Thank you for your time.


Kelly Anderson”

Then I inserted a few of my entries. Now, I wait…and wait…and wait. Rumor has it that these people will respond in one way, shape or form (unlike the staff at Oprah when I suggested a meet and greet with Matthew). The questions is, will they tell me I’m a talentless hack or will they agree that I have an audience and they’d like to hear what other pointless ramblings I’m able to muster? I, obviously, vote for the latter. I think we can all agree, when it comes to pointless ramblings, I am queen!

I know that it can take weeks for a response, but every ding alerting me to email received finds me with my heart in my throat. I just want to know, either way, what someone in the industry actually thinks (not that your opinions are in any way less important to me, natch).

Gasp! Email.

Rats! Junkmail.

Monday’s weigh in had me losing the 2 pounds from last week. One more to lose to get back to where I was. I’m at 333. On “the boy” front, he got back from his trip last night. He missed me (giggle) and wanted me to come up to see him (giggle), so I did (giggle). Since I wasn’t expecting him back so soon and had to get decent, it was midnight before I got there. This was the first time I saw him since he finished up with school. We snuggled up on the couch (giggle), watched a movie (giggle), and then I stayed the night (giggle). We didn’t study. Banzai, Danielsan! Banzai!

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Doing my part to support the men in blue...

one ticket at a time. Or, in this case, the men in plain clothes performing a sting operation to catch the most heinous of violators; those that don't stop for pedestrians that they are in no way, shape, or form going to hit. Oregon has acquired itself a fairly new pedestrian law. Something about if they set one foot off the safety of their precious little curb then seas better part for them. Thou shalt stop and remain stopped until their fragile sensibilities make it safely across regardless of how long they dawdle or whether or not they themselves were following traffic safety (next we'll be required to offer them a ride to their destination paying no never mind to the ax they wield). For they, said pedestrians, walk on water.

My pedestrian happened to be a plain clothed police officer and, as I can only giggle at imagining, was spending his Saturday walking back and forth across the tiny streets of Aurora, Oregon to catch violators such as myself. Seriously? Aren't there crimes being committed somewhere? Anyway, as my nephew and I were heading to stay the night with my sister we came upon said pedestrian. He was not even in our lane yet as we passed him. Now, typically I am the first to stop and let people cross the street, however, in this instance, I thought getting the hell out of the way and not slamming on my breaks to stop was the wiser decision. As I passed him, I looked in my rear view mirror and saw him getting on his cell phone all the while watching my car. I thought to myself, "No one watches a car like that unless they're calling in a violation of some sort." Enter cop car side street right. Fucker.

I pull over to the sounds of my nephew uttering "Oh my God. We're going to jail." I considered assuring him that the only jail worthy thing I've done was between me and Ben & Jerry and that I stealthfully disposed of any evidence, but thought he might freak out, jump from the car, and have me arrested for kidnapping.

To his credit, Officer What's His Face was not a complete dick as is so typical. Should the circumstances have been different, I might have even liked the guy. I do find it interesting that my thing for men in uniform completely disappears when they are standing next to my car, with their hand on their gun, asking for my license, proof of insurance, and registration. He didn't even take very long writing me my ticket so I didn't have to sit on the side of the road being subjected to rubbernecking for very long. Of course, as they were doing this all day, he probably had them filled out in advance for uber-effectiveness. Sort of like a Mad Lib. Just fill in "Person's Name", "Adverb", "Noun", and "Dollar Amount" and you're done. My dollar amount? Two hundred forty seven (247) dollars. Did I mention I'm unemployed? As he handed me my ticket he said, "Just so you know, I'm not the officer that's issuing the ticket. The officer that was walking is and he'll be the one in court" Thanks, Officer What's His Face, but that doesn't make me hate you any less. No, No, YOU have a nice day. Fucker. Albeit a nicer fucker than most.

I quickly called my sister to warn her before she passed through Aurora, Oregon. HA! One less sucker to meet your quota, bitches. And, should any of our fine men in blue be reading this...I respect what you do, hard job, blah blah blah, don't arrest me. Free speech and what not.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Be sure to drink your Ovaltine!

I’ve been single for four years and in that time I rarely got past the awkward first date. In the off chance that I did, I never saw someone more than three times. At first this was fun and all, but the more time you spend with someone the more you begin to remember why you’ve been single for four years...well, the more I do anyway. It’s just flat out easier that way. In the last four years I never had to worry about just how many other girls I was competing with or if they were skinnier or prettier (OK, realistically, there is a 99.9% chance that they are skinnier, so I guess I still don't have to worry about that, but I still hope I'm cuter). I haven't been forced to come to the realization that I still have a lot of trust issues from previous debacles some would call "relationships". I never had to worry if I was being used for my 4.0 and my insane ability to formulate a sentence in just the right way (I’ve been writing "the boys" papers for school). I never had to worry that I wasn’t appropriately walking the fine line of not saying enough and saying too much. I've never in my life had to sit on someone's couch and wonder what it meant that I was there, alone, while he was showing off my car (not me) to his friends somewhere. And in the last four years, I sure as hell haven’t had to break out my special Women's Edition Little Orphan Annie Secret Decoder Ring that I choked down Ovaltine for to figure out what a guy REALLY means when he says things.

There I sit, listening intently to the things "the boy" says, mentalnoting (new word? shame.) every last bit. Then I rush to the bathroom and perch myself aside the sink as I intently gaze upon my special Women's Edition Little Orphan Annie Secret Decoder Ring. In true Ralphie Parker style, I anxiously turn the intricate dials of my new age cipher and begin to make sense of it all (while my own personal narrator humorously keeps everyone abreast of the situation as if they can't see for themselves). Here is what I've learned:

"Do you think you could help me study?" really means "Hey, how about you write these papers for me?"

"Are you dating anyone else?" really means "I need to know how many other girls I can get away with dating before I actually have to make up excuses."

"Let's take a nap." really means "Let's lay in my bed and fuck around a little."

"I need to go drop something off at my buddies house." really means "You wait here. I'll take your car. I'll show off your car, not you, while driving my buddies around in it."

"I'd have you come along, but my buddy needs to get to work and it's just going to be a quick thing." really means "I'm ready to show off your car, but not ready to show off you. But, hey, at least they know about you, right?"

"What's wrong?" really means "What did you find out and how am I going to get out of this?"

"I don't think I'm going to be ready to be anyone's boyfriend for a while." really means "I haven't quite decided which girl I want nor am I ready to cut ties with all of them just yet."

"Let's take a study break." really means "I'm tired from watching you type my papers so fast, let's lay in my bed and fuck around a little."

"I'm worried that you're going to turn out to be just like all the other girls I've dated. No one can be this great." really means "I'm worried that you're seeing more people than I am and I need to say something that makes you feel guilty about it."

"We are more than friends." really means "I'm worried that you're seeing more people than I am and I need to say something that makes you feel guilty about it...but I'm not ready to be anyone's boyfriend for a while." and in some regions "Let's lay in my bed and fuck around a little."

It has been a very informative few weeks. The biggest lesson learned is that I have got trust issues like you write home about. Everything he says and everything he does...I analyze. Every text message he gets (and subsequently responds to) and every call he makes...I suspect. Every compliment he gives me and every sweet thing he does...I wonder. I don't verbalize any of it, I do what I'm famous for...I let it stew, fester if you will, until I either push someone away or rationalize it away.

Right now, I'm voting for rationalizing it. I've known "the boy" for only three weeks. In that three weeks we have talked every day, usually multiple times a day, and spent all three weekends together. We are by no means even close to relationship status and who he flirts with and who he dates is none of my business...just yet. Though I'm not spending time with anyone else, there are other guys I talk to and I can't go getting all hypocritical just because he talks to other girls. That's what "dating" is supposed to be about...right? Just because I opt not to hang out with other guys does not mean that my personal choice has to be his. He'll be done with this term of school in a couple days. He'll be less stressed and there will be no papers for me to write for him. Then, we'll see why it was he was hanging out with me; my 4.0 or my stellar good looks coupled with unparalleled wit. For now, I shall keep my special Women's Edition Little Orphan Annie Secret Decoder Ring at the ready and forge on into the dating abyss.

p.s. my week of gluttony and lack of motivation resulted in another gain. I'm back to 335...you do the math cuz this girl is tired of doing other people's homework.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

All Points Bulletin

An APB is a broadcast issued from one law enforcement agency to another. It typically contains information about a wanted suspect who is to be arrested or a person of interest, whom law enforcement officers are to look for. They are usually dangerous or missing persons. An All Points Bulletin can also be known as a BOLO, which stands for "be on the lookout." I don't care what you call it, someone needs to find the shady bastard that stole my motivation. He is to be considered armed and dangerous. Bring him in, dead or alive!

I can fairly accurately pinpoint when it happened. I saw the culprit tiptoeing around last week when I only hit the gym twice and ate crap for the first couple days of the week. Then I spent all weekend with "the boy" again and I could swear we were being followed. I thought I saw him in the line at the Chinese buffet we went to and then at the Mexican restaurant the next day. Everywhere we went I felt like he was waiting to snatch my commitment...and now he has. I haven't counted points at all this week and it is now Thursday. I haven't been to the gym since last Wednesday. I take really really long naps and everything else I seem to do seems, well, boring. It's like I have Cabin Fever with a side of A.D.D. I have been, for the most part, locked in this house for months and it's really taking it's tole. Now, even if I do break free for a little while, wherever I end up seems just as boring.

When I weighed in on Monday I had gained a pound. I was lucky. I know that. With the way I ate over the weekend, I should have gained more. Now, in the aftermath of going off track for an entire weekend, I can't seem to get back on track. I'm not even drinking my water. I'm destined for very bad things when I get back on the scale. So, I'm tacking on an Amber Alert to that APB and that BOLO. If you've seen my drive, my passion, my fierceness, could you please bring her back home? Please?

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Big Girl Dating

I haven't been in a relationship in almost 4 years. Have I mentioned that lately? For the first two years of that I was completely and totally content with being single. I didn't want a man and found them fairly stomach turning most of the time thanks to the tragedies that were my past relationships. Around the halfway mark I started to venture back out there a little. I knew what I wanted now and would no longer settle. I've gone on plenty of sad excuses for first dates in that time, but rarely did anyone make it to date number two. My personal ad was a bold attempt to end the single streak. If this weekend was any indicator of how my dating life will be, things are lookin' UP!

I woke up feeling fairly positive about the day ahead. The bad news is...the growth on my face that appeared a week ago was still there and no amount of makeup would hide it. I'm not talking a zit, that would have been a pleasure in comparison. I'm talking about a carbuncle (a distant relative of a boil). I've gotten this thing in the same spot, under my eye, close to my nose, every year, for FOUR years. It ain't pretty. The good news is...I was so self-conscious about that, that I didn't have room for being self-conscious about my size. I had pangs of nervousness throughout the day, but nothing too drastic. We talked on the phone a couple times and then it was time to face the music. I went over to his house.

When I got there the front door was open. I walked up as he came out of his room which put him down the hall from me. He smiled and just looked at me for a few seconds. He walked towards me and was still smiling. I'll take that as a good sign. He gave me a great big hug and lingered for a minute. He smelled AWESOME, but before I could tell him, he was telling me the same thing. Well, at least we agree that we smell good. We went to dinner and my booth phobia kicked in. I was cringing as the hostess asked him if we wanted a booth or a table. He chose one of the little romantic tables in the middle. He shoots, he scores! We played some pool and then I helped him study. He must have told me a dozen times what a good time he was having. The chemistry was great and the flirting was obviously there. We ended up spending all of Sunday together, too, which included a lot of studying and a trip to have sushi. I had a great time.

So now what? I'm not sure. We talked a couple times once I got home on Sunday and we talked a couple times yesterday. We're supposed to get together this coming weekend, too. So just how DOES a girl know when a guy is truly interested in her and it's not a bunch of talk to see what he can get? Yes, I'm jaded. I guess only time will tell. I know you're probably hoping for more details, but a lady doesn't kiss and tell...she just makes comments suggesting that there was lots of kissing. Weigh in this morning went well. Five pounds down. We're 28 pounds down and rockin' a 332.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

I've never had a Pina Colada,

but I'm not opposed to getting caught in the rain. Have you ever done a personal ad? SWF seeks SWM for LTR, ASAP? In this day and age, internet dating is all the rage, but how do you sell yourself when you're a BBW (big beautiful woman) when 80% of the men out there are looking for SLB's (skinny little bitches)? Well, if you're me it goes a little something like this...

I'm What Willis Was Talking About

First, and most importantly, my life is in a state of transition. Among the many aspects of my life that are a work in progress is the fact that I'm busting my tail to lose weight and live a healthier/better life. I'm very focused and very determined. YES, I'm a bbw, but I won't be forever. It's cool if you don't find me to be "relationship" material due to that, I get it. You should, however, hang with me if you find me at all appealing. After all, I'm kinda cute and in a year or so I'm kinda gonna be a big deal. :o) I'm just saying.

So, if you're still reading you probably want to know what else I'm about. I'm big into photography and art. I like the outdoors and camping/fishing. Hiking is big on my list of things to do once I lose a little more weight. We can go anyway, but if the incline is all stupid you might have to break out your CPR skills if I pass out or hyperventilate. I hit the gym 3-4 times a week and fit in walks and other stuff on the other days. I eat healthy 95% of the time. I will never give up ice cream/gelato (that's crazy talk), but my threesomes with Ben & Jerry are few and far between now. I crave great conversation...especially over yummy coffee. My friends and family find me highly entertaining and often cry from laughter. If we were to play Uno I would wipe the floor with you. Seriously, it would be embarrassing. I am allergic to chronic negativity, drama chasers, and perpetual stupidity...I'll likely break out in hives. I will cry at movies and I believe that laughter is best when it hurts. I am often found loitering at Starbucks, but my Dutch Brother from another mother scores far more points with me...if only they had places for me to sit and draw/read. I'm just a skosh sarcastic, but I can control it. I love dogs and sometimes tolerate cats. I have an often misunderstood Boston Terrier named Lola. I don't have kids, but like them (er, most of them). I sing in the car AND the shower. I like to go on drives on some of the old scenic highways that Oregon has to offer and often prefer it topless, but before you jump on that email, I only mean in my convertible beetle. I take care of myself and carry myself well, like a lady even. I even rock the pedicures and use yummy smelling lotions and perfume. I hate to state the obvious, but I'm kind of a catch. ;o)

If you can make me laugh, won't make me break out in hives and think I'm cute...shoot a girl an email with some pics.

I posted this little gem, along with a photo, on Craigslist. I decided that my sarcasm was my golden ticket...and it was. I seriously got a lot of responses. There was only one, though, that scored himself a date thus far. He and I started talking on Monday evening...the same day I posted the ad. A couple emails lead to chatting online, which lead to flirting until 2 am, which lead to talking on the phone until 4 am. Nice start, no? At 10:30 the next morning he called me before he even got out of bed. Hmmm. Maybe he digs me. By Tuesday night he was asking when he could meet me. We agreed on Saturday. Let the paranoia begin.

For the entirety of the time between then and now, I've worried about whether or not he would like me. He's seen my pictures and I've seen his, but when you tell someone you're a big girl you have to wonder if their version of "big girl" is in the same weight class as mine. Did he think I just meant I had a J-Lo bootie? Did he think I was simply a thick girl with a fat complex? Did the lighting in my pics have me looking 100 pounds lighter? If so, can I have my own lighting crew follow me around wherever I go? A couple nights ago I flat out told him that I knew he'd like my personality because I'm no different in person than I am on the phone, but that I worried that I was bigger than he was expecting. He basically told me not to worry about it. That he knows I'm working on it and part of the reason he wanted to get to know me was because he was attracted to how determined and focused I sounded in my ad. Alright, sucker, but don't say I didn't warn you.

So, tomorrow is D Day. He's been counting down. He actually wanted us to hang out tonight, too, because his plans changed, but I couldn't. If tomorrow goes well he wants to hang out on Sunday, too. He's very excited about it all. I would be, too, if I weren't preparing myself for potential let down. I know...Miss. Cup Half Empty. I've been doing this "blind date" style dating for decades and never have had someone be disappointed with me. Why do I feel compelled to convince myself that there is a chance they'll run screaming when they see me? I'm sick. I need therapy. After we hung up tonight I lay in bed worrying about it and the phone rang again. It was him. He just wanted to tell me that he was really looking forward to tomorrow and for me not to worry...everything will be fine. I hope he's right.

Friday, August 8, 2008

Paging Dr. Kevorkian...Dr. Kevorkian?

On October 27, 1997 Oregon enacted the Death with Dignity Act which allows terminally-ill Oregonians to end their lives through the voluntary self-administration of lethal medications, expressly prescribed by a physician for that purpose. This entry is not up for political debate, but I will say I'm a believer in Death with Dignity after having watched two grandmothers waste away to nothing from diseases with no cures and knowing there was nothing that could be done for them. They deserved better than that and so does my scale. I feel the courts would consider the assisted suicide of my scale to be a valid one if only they knew how sick it truly is.

I got on it this morning for a Pre Weigh In weigh in. I have suffered one pound losses for 2 weeks in a row and with all the working out I was doing I wanted to see if it was paying off yet. I typically have to get on it 3 or 4 times before I get matching numbers as I don't think the floor in my room is exactly even. I got on it this morning and the number was the same as it was on Monday. It was disheartening, but I knew I had to get on it a couple more times to know the truth. I got on it five times and the number was different every time. I nudged it forward and it just kept on being different. I nudged it sideways and more of the same. Different, different, slightly different, DOH we have a match, different again, and again, and again. I shit you not, I got on there 30 times. If that's an exaggeration, it ain't much of one. It was ranging between 337, my weight from Monday, to 327. Now 327 is a beautiful thing. I've told myself I have to wait until 329 before I can get another pedicure and I could justify getting one before my date on Saturday (yes, you read that correctly) if it truly was 327. I nudged it to a 4th location and got on again. 331.5, 331.5, 331.5...hmmm, apparently we're going with 331.5. It's no pedicure, but I'll take it over one pound any day. I still have until Monday to pull off even bigger numbers for the week (or completely stress eat my way into Saturday's date and gain it all back).

So ladies and gentlemen of the jury, as the facts have clearly shown, Death with Dignity is the only real humane choice before us. With your express permission, I shall open the window at the top of the stairs and send her plummeting to her death. No really, it's a very dignified way for a scale to go.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Is it love?

I think about him all the time. I find myself wanting to spend more and more time with him every day and the more time I do spend with him the better I feel. Any day that I haven't seen him is a day that I feel lost and out of control. Sometimes our time together leaves me disappointed, but sometimes I come home feeling like it could not have possibly gone better. He makes my heart race. He gives me faith in myself. He makes me stronger. He makes me proud. He makes me see my potential. He makes me feel like there's hope for my future...that there's nothing I can't do.

Is it love...or is it a psychotic break from reality brought on by 7ish weeks of calorie reduction? Things are getting serious between Gym and I. Our initial plan was only to meet on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays and to see other people the rest of the week. I can't live without him (literally). Today is Thursday and I found myself at his doorstep for an unscheduled rendezvous. If feeling this way is wrong...I don't wanna be right.

So pick yourselves up off the floor kiddies, mamas pushin' all her limits. Not only am I consistently going, but I'm busting my pasty pale tail. No, really, I'm even sweating...errrr "glistening." Yesterday I even tackled my arch nemesis...the elliptical. If you'll recall, I've tried it only once. I lasted all of three seconds. I had to hold my weight up myself (uh huh, I do realize the world record I broke pulling THAT off) and was going so fast that I thought for sure I would fly right off the thing. I didn't know how to use it and didn't set any resistance or incline. I am now aware that this is a critical component of successful elliptical workouts. I managed 15 minutes yesterday and did 30 today. Tack on the other cardio I'm doing as well and all those Barbie lookin' Phi Beta Delta Kappa Gamma Ho's better watch their backs. I'm bringin' my "A" game, bitches. You're goin' DOWN!

Before I go, I want to give a HOLLAAAAA to all of you that read this and especially those that post comments for me. It really keeps me motivated to finish this journey when I know I have the support of all of you. You are loved!

Monday, July 28, 2008

My date with Gym.

I woke up this morning feeling, well, like a waste of space...and a LOT of space at that. I was fed up with everything. It had been building for days and this morning it all came to a head. I was fed up with being fat, fed up with being single, fed up with being unemfuckingployed, fed up with my living situation...and the list goes on from there. I got on the scale for my weigh in and was kicked in the ovaries with a one pound loss. "Well, fuck you, too." I thought.

My morning progressed along just as blah as it began. Lunch time rolled around and I was still in what most would call pajamas. I kept thinking about the gym. Have been for days. This weeks mini mission for the Boot Camp I'm in charge of is simple enough. Just earn Activity Points as described by Weight Watchers. Do what you want, how ever intense you want, and count those points. I've done virtually nothing. I posted a message on the WW message boards about feeling like a slacker and one of the girls that posted back ended her response with "I wish I could be as motivating as you are." to which I replied, "How the hell is it that I can motivate others, but can't motivate myself?" Seriously! What the hell is my problem? I pondered for a second and then said to myself (upcoming vulgarity warning), "Self," I said, "Shut the fuck up. Stop being such a fucking pussy, get dressed for the love of God, and get your big badunkadunk to the gym!" Harsh? Perhaps. Effective? Very! I got dressed, grabbed my stuff, shouted a hearty "I'm going to the gym." to my Dad in passing, and drove the 15 miles necessary.

I walked in trying to look as though I'm there all the time and not draw too much attention to myself. I've only been to this particular location once before. I went up the stairs hoping that I remembered things correctly and that the cardio machines were up there. There were only about five people up there, four of which were on treadmills by the windows. The TV's in front of the other treadmills were all static so, figuring that's why everyone was over there, I joined them. Four guys and me. Got my music ready, stepped up on the treadmill, started it, looked up and out the window and, huh? The pool is down there. These guys weren't avoiding staring at static for the duration of their cardio fitness, they were staring at T&A 2008 down there at the pool. "Oh, I'm on to you now, pervs. Pssssh! Uh huh, I bet they're watching her. Look at her...skinny bitch in her little black bikini with her perfect tan and her blonde hair. She is skin cancer waiting to happen. Those tits have got to be fake. Oh, what's this? Well, hello Buff Daddy. Ohhhhh yeah, swim to mama." Buff Daddy, aka Sven, was a tall, blonde, tanned, muscular, speedo wearing, testosterone filled addition to the pool. I can't tell you if he was good looking, he was too far away and, really, does it matter? I've never wanted to be a towel so much in my life. He proceeded to swim laps and I proceeded to enjoy my workout.

Fifteen minutes later, shin splints kicked in. I pulled myself away from the view long enough to get in ten minutes on the recumbent bike so that my shin muscles could relax and then it was back to the treadmill. "What's this? Ohhh, the backstroke now. Nice!" Then my concentration was thwarted as Phi Beta Delta Kappa Gamma Ho stepped onto the treadmill next to me. "You have GOT to be kidding me. Does she shop at Baby Gap? Those clothes wouldn't fit a Cabbage Patch Doll for Christ sake. Are you? Is her? Her ass IS totally hanging out the back of those shorts. Daisy Duke wouldn't be caught dead in anything this revealing. Tramp. Oh, look, Sven is getting out of the pool." Fifteen more minutes on the treadmill, shin splints are kicking back in, view is leaving, seems like as good a time as any to stop. I did 40 minutes of resistance training in the women's only area and headed home.

On the way home I obviously stopped at our local crack dealer's house, because I passed my driveway and headed out to my brother's. I snagged my nephew and we started to go for our walk. He's been out of commission lately so it was good to see him feeling better and us picking up where we left off. This time we decided to walk the opposite direction to my aunt and uncle's farm. Once there we walked around a little and then headed back. For your safety I would now ask that you make sure you're seated firmly in your chairs so as not to cause injury. OK? OK. I kept having the urge to, well, RUN! Not only did I have the urge, but i DID run...TWICE! I know, right? It was at this point that I was glad that my nephew was in the habit of carrying around his mom's old cell phone. It doesn't have service, but it is charged and he could have called 911 if I either A. poked an eye out with the twins, or B. had a heart attack. Did I mention that I ran? Just checking.

We got back to the house after 45 minutes and sat at the kitchen table in the air conditioning. He brought me an Otter Pop and we sat eating them, playing Hungry Hungry Hippo (coincidence? I think not), talking and laughing. It was a good day after all.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Mic Check (tap tap tap). Is this thing on?

Check! Check one! Check two! Can you hear me now? I've been asked by a few to provide a recap of events that unfolded during my hiatus. So, now that I have your attention...

November: As you know from my entries, I moved home. My tragic roommate prompted it, but it was also to pay off debt, save for a house, and be able to go to school without Lola never seeing the light of day. It was only a matter of days before my weight loss efforts were completely and totally sabotaged.

February: I lost my job. As stressful as unemployment can be, it was as if a weight had been lifted from my shoulders. I'd spent the last year wondering when it would be my turn. I watched as colleagues...friends...dropped like flies around me. I watched as the company sank further and further into debt. I knew it was only a matter of time. February 7th was my time. Did I mention that I got NO severance pay? Pay me with what?

March: Towards the beginning of March I got a new tattoo. I drew up a pink ribbon in remembrance of my grandma that I lost to breast cancer when I was a freshman in high school. My sister took it to our tattoo artist and had him add the cherry blossoms. She got a smaller version on the top of her foot and I got mine on the outside of my left leg, above my ankle.
And, at the end of March, after about 14 years, I returned to school. College life at 32 and a Community College is a far cry from the drunken binges, parties, and dorm life I might have partaken in at 18 at a University, but the studying is the same. Since I no longer had a job I threw myself wholeheartedly into my grades. I pulled a 4.0 and was taking 14 credits. School life suits me. My brain was screaming for stimulation. It does not, however, suit my eating habits. My evening class schedule threw my dinners into a tailspin. I ate a lot of fast food and drank a lot of Starbucks.

April: My grandma finally lost her battle with Alzheimer's. As I stated when I returned from hiatus, it's easier to just let your loved one go then to watch them battle this disease. You lose a little more of them every single day. She's in a better place now.

June: I turned 32. Whoopdie doo. Spring term ended and I decided to take the summer off to really focus on trying to find a new job since that hadn't been going very well. There just isn't much out there that would pay me enough to ever be able to move out of my parent's house and afford the gas money to get to school. Most required a long commute and that's not cutting it unless they're paying well. I got on the scale to reassess what moving home and going to school had done to me. I gained more than half of my 30ish pounds back. Time to take matters back into my own hands regardless of who is and isn't willing to help me.

July: I just applied for a job with the City that I live in and it would be perfect. Maybe not mind blowing, but perfect for now. Fingers are most definitely crossed. I started another Boot Camp challenge on the Weight Watcher's message boards and am in charge of coordinating weekly missions for about 28 people. I keep track of all their info, award points for the effort they put out, try to keep them motivated and, hopefully, that keeps me on track as well. It ends on Halloween. I've lost about 9 pounds or so since I recommitted. I was at 339 as of Monday morning. 2008 has not been especially kind to me, but I'm here. I'm keeping my head up and taking it one day at a time. I'm trying to take control of my life and make 2009 one most definitely worth remembering.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Fat girls can't jump.

I felt the palms of my hands start to sweat. There was a hint of perspiration on my brow. They were picking teams. At first the teams were decided by where ever you happened to end up when you walked onto the court (read: field). No rhyme or reason to it really. No pressure. No humiliation. Now, after two games had determined one team's suck value as being exponentially greater than the other's, it was decided that we should pick teams. Great. My worst playground nightmare revisited. I hung my head and walked over to the line up.

What you should first understand is that I was camping with my family. After dinner Thursday night various cousins, their friends, and their kids decided it was time for Volleyball. What you should also understand is that my oldest male cousin considers Volleyball to be a sacred sport. All rules should be followed and all pansies should be left behind. I used to play when I was in Junior High, but hadn't gone down that road since. Perhaps all the times I declined playing in the past was the reason I wasn't asked to play this time...or perhaps I'm just a pansy.

I went and got my camera and started taking pictures as they warmed up and called over more people to play. When I heard them say that they needed another player on one side I had an out of body experience when the words "I'll play." came forth from my lips as I put my camera away. Enthusiasm actually rang out, but I'm sure it was quickly deemed overkill after my first few run in's with the ball proved futile. Bumps sent the ball soaring to the left about 4 times in a row. My first set had such incoming spin on it that it went spiraling behind me instead of up or forward. It was all very tragic. The only things I really had going for me were my serves. Though underhanded, they were solid and consistent. We lost the first game and rallied a little for the second, but still ended up defeated. My inner Volleyball Diva gradually appeared, but I didn't feel she was ready to sustain the fatal blow of being left last picked for a team...again.

What had often been the case in my youth was that teams would be formed and if people were unaware of my playing ability, I was strictly assessed by my size. She's fat, she can't possibly play well. What they failed to realize was that when my arm is warmed up and my weight is put behind a softball, I can throw from center field to home with ease and when my lefthandedness and girth were put behind a solidly placed pitch, it didn't really matter how slow I ran because I will have at least hit everyone else home even if I only made it to second or third base. What they failed to realize is that my thigh muscles are huge from carrying around my weight and when put to use in kickball no one really stood a chance. What they failed to realize is that what I may have lacked in speed, I made up for in strength. Regardless, I was often left, well, last girl standing.

So there I stood, lined up in front of my family, resolved to be last again. The obvious first picks, the guys, the power hitters, the one's willing to dive for the ball and show their true appreciation for the game, were called out first. I am not one of those people. I am OK with that. A couple of the girls were picked and it was down to a straggling few. I got called. I almost had to ask them if they were sure. Who? Me? As the games progressed I steadily moved up in rank when they chose new teams. I wasn't last girl standing anymore.

We played for three and a half hours straight on Thursday and another 2 hours yesterday morning before I left. Between games people went off to hydrate, smoke, potty, etc. Yesterday I stayed and decided to see if the old girl still had some overhand serves left in her. Old girl does. I sent 6 in a row blazing over the net. Aforementioned oldest male cousin said, "Why the hell haven't you been serving like that in the games?" I confessed that I was a chicken shit and didn't think I still had it in me. He said I did. I had first serve when the next game started. I opted to break out the overhand serves. Untouchable. They soon realized that what I lacked in speed, I made up for in strength. I soon realized that I can't laugh and overhand serve at the same time. Oh well. Nobody's perfect.

I opted to only spend one night camping with my family because I didn't want to completely sabotage my efforts with the garbage we usually consume while camping. The calories I did eat while there were easily burnt off with all of my time spent playing Volleyball, but I thought it best to end my trip and head for home. It was only about a 20 minute drive home, but that is apparently time enough for my body to feel the effects of five or so hours of Volleyball. I got out of the car and my joints ached. My ankles, my knees, my hips, my wrists. After my shower I laid on the couch and I could not get comfortable. No matter how I seemed to lay, my hips were lecturing me on how 340something pound girls have no business lurching hither and thither at a moment's notice just to hit a silly little ball back and forth. My knees and ankles shook a stern bit of cartilage at me for running after the ball so often (uh huh, I said RUNNING). That my joints and I must first come to an understanding before making any repeated sudden movements. I tried to shut them up with plenty of ibuprofen, but it was too busy trying to console the pinched nerve in my neck that I've had for two weeks (yeah, I still played, even when said nerve gave me a headache throughout all of yesterday's game play). I hurt...and I didn't care.

This morning when I woke up I slowly got out of bed as the realization of what I'd done to my body thoroughly sank in. Every muscle hurt, every joint hurt, every eyelash hurt. Not excruciatingly so, but I hurt nonetheless. Every time I move today I am reminded of what I did...and I'm proud. Fat girls still can't jump, but at least this one got out there and tried.

Monday, June 30, 2008

Exercise, bringing family together.

Yesterday I decided to go for a walk out at my brother's house (formerly known as my grandparent's house). It's in the country and only about 2.5 miles from my house. From the end of their driveway to the end of the street it is exactly one mile. I asked my oldest nephew, who is 7, if he would like to walk with me. He did. There aren't many cars out there at that time, but I told him to stay on the edge of the road and we walked. We walked, and we learned.

He learned that pedestrians walk against traffic and bicyclists ride with traffic. I learned that my shin splints act up at around the quarter mile mark. He learned that cars are supposed to give us plenty of room when we walk, even if that means swerving into the other lane. I learned that at a half mile, I have to turn around and go back or my legs might never get me home. It was at this point, after continuously drifting to the middle of the road, that I felt compelled to teach him another valuable lesson.

I asked him if he remembered the little purple cross at the opposite end of the street. He said he did. I proceeded to tell him that the little girl of the lady that used to babysit him was hit by a car down there and killed. That she was riding her bike with her family and that someone wasn't paying attention and hit her. He looked up at me and I explained that even though cars are supposed to watch out for people walking, that sometimes they aren't paying attention. That it's our job to watch out for them and to make sure we are walking where we're supposed to be walking. As we turned around to head back, he pointed out that I was on the wrong side of the street. Lesson learned.

Tonight I went out there to walk again. I didn't go in the house and get my nephew. I didn't know walking with me meant so much and I brought Lola to work with her on the leash and thought he might be too distracting for her. I had to turn around at the half mile mark again and when I had about a quarter of a mile left to go, my sister-in-law pulled up and my nephew jumped out. He wanted to walk the rest of the way with me. After a while I handed him Lola's leash and told him to hold on tight. He walked on the edge of the road and we talked. Once we were almost there I let him run with Lola (Lord knows I can't) and I met him in the front yard. As I went to leave he asked me when we could walk again. I told him I'd be back tomorrow. So now, if I don't go walk, I'm not just letting myself down, I'm letting my nephew down.

My nephew is rail thin and by no means in NEED of additional exercise, but it left me wondering...where would I be if one of the relatives that I looked up to would have let me walk with them? Would have gotten me to exercise without making it clear that I was fat and needed to lose weight. Where would I be if, when I was 7, someone said, "Hey Kel, I'm going for a walk. Would you like to come with me?" Instead of "Go run up and down the stairs, you're fat and you need to lose weight." What if someone would have cared more about how I felt than how I looked? What if...

As promised, I did weigh in this morning. I lost 5 pounds this week. Total of 16.5.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Do they make waders in my size?

I'm chugging water as if my water bottle were fashioned from a rubber tube and a funnel. I hear hundreds of college students yelling "Chug! Chug! Chug!" as I down it as fast as possible. It's not to score the admiration of a twenty something jock, though, it's to offset the MSG and whatever other ancient Chinese secrets I subjected myself to at dinner last night...and, well, lunch today. Our favorite local Chinese joint would have to close it's doors my first week back on track. What was I supposed to do? They've got the best crab puffs EVER! I had to say goodbye. Wait while I chug...

Don't get me wrong. I didn't just tear into the brightly colored take out containers and eat whatever was put in front of me. I looked everything up beforehand and ordered what seemed to be a more realistic meal. I got Beef with Broccoli and the ever so delicious Crab Puffs and tracked every last point. When it came time to eat the fortune cookie, it was stale (lucky Lola). What was funny is that mine said "Eat your vegetables. They are good for your health." Giggle. It's not the choices I made at dinner that stress me out right now, it's the water retention Chinese food brings that has me worried. Must...fill...water...bottle.

Enter today stage right. I'M SO HUNGRY! All week I don't think I've felt one real hunger pang and today I'm hungry the second I get done eating (reason number two for currently chugging water). It makes me feel anxious. Like I'm going to lose control. I know I won't. I know that even if I did find comfort in the refrigerator that it's OK. I know that tomorrow is another day and that each day, each meal, is a fresh start, but it's too soon. The rest of the week was too easy. Tomorrow is weigh in day. I have to fight it. I have to be strong. I have to pee.

Friday, June 27, 2008

Make room for my big badonkadonk

cuz I'm here to stay!

I took new "before" pictures yesterday. I originally intended to at least do my hair and makeup for them to alleviate some of the trauma, but I'm sick and I really didn't feel like it. Besides, you can put lipstick on a pig and call her Sally, but...oh, nevermind. So, after my shower I pulled my short hair back into a tragic little ponytail and put on clothes that are tight enough to show all my fat rolls without the threat of blindness that being naked would provide. I set up my tripod and my new fancy Nikon D60 camera and proceeded to break off a few timer shots. To be honest, I expected my camera to sprout little arms to unscrew itself from the tripod and wee little legs to walk itself over to the window and throw itself spiraling to the ground. I now have shots from various frightening angles over on the sidebar slideshow that are to eventually prove me to be the incredible shrinking woman.

(waiting while you look, cringe, and nod agreeably with my spot on evaluation. Tolja so!)

Are we all clear on why I'm here now? Good, because I need unanimous and unequivocal understanding of the obstacle before me. Have you read all the entries and taken note of how many times I've recommitted, said I was back, talked about how badly I need to beat the beast that is my weight? Have you noticed all the things I had hoped to do and goals I wanted to meet? Rewards I intended to give myself? Have I been to Italy? No. Tahiti? No. Been on Oprah? No. Have I gotten off diabetes medication, gotten under 300 even once, or made jaws drop with how fierce I am? No.

Am I a quitter? No. I'm still here aren't I? Am I a failure? No. I may be taking my sweet time, but I'm only a failure if I stop trying. I took those pictures and when I looked at them, though hard to see, I didn't cry. I didn't binge. I didn't sit and stare at them as if I had no idea I was that big. I looked, cringed slightly, posted them, and said, "OK, so now we change it." Will I lose the 200 pounds I mentioned when I started this? Maybe not, and that's fine with me. Will I get under 300? You bet your sweet ass I will. Under 200? Who knows. For now we are no longer focusing on anything that far in the future. Right now we are focusing on things more attainable...things like seeing 299 on the scale again. Right now we're focused on today. Anything beyond this weekend is more than I care to think about. No one knows what tomorrow holds.

I'm 5 days into my reattempt at this home improvement project and you might as well bring me another board cuz THIS ONE...is nailed! 100% on track and no inkling of deviation. I can't even say that the reason it's been easy is because I'm sick and haven't had an appetite. Since when has not having an appetite stopped THIS girl from eating? Exactly! I'm just not thinking about food. I'm eating, don't get me wrong. I'm just not consumed by it. I'm not watching the clock and counting down to when I can justify eating again. I'm not making my food choices wishing it were something better. I'm just giving my body nourishment and then going about my day. You know, like skinny people do. I'm not depriving myself and I'm not going overboard. I've had points left most nights and sometimes I had a bowl of ice cream and sometimes I just had a diet ice cream bar instead. Tonight we were going to have pizza. Fine. I got the Papa Murphy's Delite pizza for me. I counted all my points. I'm fine.

Thank you for the praise, for the pats on the back, and for the words of encouragement. You'll be hearing from me often.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Hi. Remember me?

I'm that girl that used to have her eye on the weight loss prize. The girl that always seemed to have the end goal in mind even if she did slip off track on occasion. The girl that would go on and on about how she got off track and the reasons behind it and how she wants to change and undo whatever damage she did to whatever progress she had made. She'd sit here eagerly typing away with a renewed sense of self, an uplifted spirit, and the fire of recommitment burning to her very core. She would probably have just spent countless hours planning her attack, marking her calendar with the days she would be working out and her routines, setting up check points and deadlines for what she should weigh and when. She would have had positivity coursing through her veins. She would have had hope. She would have had good intentions. She would have felt fierce.

Today, however, I sit here, today I write this entry, defeated. I won't make excuses. I won't blame the cards I've been dealt recently or my schedule. I won't blame my living arrangement or saboteurs. I will blame me. I'm responsible for my bad food choices through times of crisis and times of hardship. I'm responsible for my lack of motivation and lack of commitment to me. I'm responsible for my complete disregard for my health, for my life, for my happiness. I'm responsible for me.

I'm responsible for swallowing my pride, venturing back here to those that might still be reading this. I'm responsible for at least trying, again, to beat this demon. I am responsible for the exercise I got yesterday and the few days before that. I'm responsible for the ice cream I didn't eat last night and the new shoes I bought so that I can go to the gym. I'm responsible for me.

I've learned a lot while I've been away: losing your job is less stressful than being in a job that makes you miserable; losing your grandmother to Alzheimer's is less painful than watching her live with it; if you're not sure who your real friends are, find yourself in a time of crisis and everything becomes clear; you can not only go back to school after fourteen years, but you can get straight A's; finding yourself is far more important than finding a man; and regardless of how often people tell you that you need to lose weight, they sure as heck aren't going to help you do it.

So, I'm back??? It may not be with the fierceness of my previous attempts. It may not be chalk full of positivity and hope, but I'm back.