Monday, February 15, 2010

Day 1... again....

So here's what's up y'all:

1 baby + 1 preschooler + 1 mommy + a nasty flu = no blogging + no diet + really really really messy house.

So, since my house work is getting caught up (sort of), and since everyone is feeling better (mostly), I have deemed today as the first day of my 20-day diet... again...

The plot: 1 twenty-something overweight wife and mom, twenty days, 600 calories, and a blog where it all goes down.

Soooo... that seems to be all the creative oomph I have tonight... soooo... I'll end with my end-of-the-week weight.

As of Saturday, February 13, three weeks (a full 17 days) into the process....

I have lost 18 POUNDS!!!!!

My doctor's goal for the first 30 days: 20 lbs. Looks like I might make that and then some.

Woo hoooooooooooooooooooo!!!!!!!!!!

19 days down; 71 days to go.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Monday, February 8, 2010

(Re)Start Your Engines....

It's 2pm, and both girls are napping (amen?). We had a glorious snow-day today, and even though Maple Anne has a nasty little cold-plus-fever, I have enjoyed both the house cleaning and the lounging that snow days bring.

Last night was the super bowl... and the super bowl party... and the super bowl party food that comes with the super bowl and the super bowl party...

Combine that with a busy day and lack of food preparation, I broke down.

It's not cool. I'm not supposed to break this diet at. all. for 20 days. But, sometimes life happens, and as much as I would like to think that I will always be prepared with a handful of almonds when only chips are available, the truth is that I don't always have control over what food is set before me. So, I ate what was deliciously available... in small, single portions.

If I weren't on this 600-calorie-a-day kick, I might even be proud of the way I ate last night.

So here's the thing...

I'm an all-or-nuthin' kinda gal. And since I "fell off the wagon" last night, my first instinct is to say, "Dang, I failed. It's over. I will forever be overweight."

But I have been down that path, and I know where it leads.

So today I'm making a choice. Last night, and nights like last night, are and forever will be inevitable. I must choose to eat in moderation and jump right back on that wagon the next morning.

I hate that my 20 days have been interrupted, and I am considering starting the 20 days over again tomorrow (while still counting the past 12 days as part of the grander 90-day goal).

According to the good Doc, it takes 20 days for the brain to "reprogram" itself out of old addictions and ways of burning fat. If those 20 days are interrupted, the "cycle" may not be completely broken.

Soo... I'm in a bit of a quandary. Start the 20 days over again tomorrow? Or keep on truckin' for the remaining 9 days and hope that all the hormone stuff has been fixed???

Even posting that question makes me think I should start over... what do you think?

Saturday, February 6, 2010

On Being "Fat"...

The word is a faux pas in American society. Ugly. Shameful. "Obese" is a little less offensive, but only when used in medical conversations. "Fluffy." "Chubby." "Full-figured." "Plus-size." These are words that, in one way or another, shape our view of people. People like the lady in the Wal-Mart check-out line. People like the guy buying power tools at Lowes. People like a neighbor. Or a friend. A mother. A daughter. A brother. People like me.

I've been debating with myself for quite a while now. Is this topic too raw, too real for a blog? But, frankly, it's something I am comfortable talking about. I recognize that the topic often makes people around me uncomfortable; so I try to steer clear of it unless I'm with my closest friends and family. But you know what? I'm kind of tired of keeping it quiet.

I am "obese."

And since it's something I'm not "allowed" to talk about to the general public, I have decided to dispel a few fat fables here on my own little piece of the bloggersphere.

Fable #1: I am fat. Correction: I have fat.
I can remember a very distinct thought that struck me two years ago around Christmas time. Hubby and I were in the car, leaving a Christmas party, and I was feeling pretty bummed about my weight. At that point in time, I was the heaviest I had ever been: 140 lbs above my healthy weight limit. I had just been to my third doctor who told me that nothing was wrong with me and that I just needed to "become more active." I was discouraged and disgusted with myself. It was in that moment, that a vivid picture popped into my head: it was me, inside a fat suit. I pictured walking into that party and unzipping the suit, as everyone watched the real me step out of it. That was when I realized: I am not fat. It's not who I am. It doesn't define me. The real me is fun and vivacious, full of energy, and confident and comfortable enough to do all the things that "skinny" girls do. She's just trapped inside a fat suit that slows her down, saps her energy, and limits her ability to do certain activities. Somehow I had to find a way to "unzip" that fat suit.

Fable #2: I have low self-esteem. Correction: I have a realistic self-image.
I was talking with a friend a few months ago about my upcoming treatment with Dr.Z. She was so sweet and so excited for me. She told me how proud she was of me for even trying it, and then she said, "And when it's all over, won't you be so happy to feel beautiful again?" Yeah. I was completely flabbergasted by that comment. I had never thought of losing weight as making me "beautiful." I don't feel un-beautiful now. As a matter of fact, there are a LOT of things I like about my looks. Of course I have days when I hate my hair, and I feel like a bloated cow. But I have a feeling all women of all shapes and sizes have days like that. For the most part, I like myself and the way I look. However, I am not blind. I do see myself in the mirror, and I do see the numbers on the scale. I recognize that things need to change. But do you know what excites me the most about this change? I get to play sports with my husband. I get to have a chance at a long life - to see my grandchildren. I get a wider variety of clothing available to me, including dresses! Do you know how long it has been since I've felt comfortable wearing a dress?? I'm so stinkin' excited!

Fable #3: I'm uncomfortable talking about my weight. Correction: Other people are uncomfortable talking about it.
In American culture, when someone says, "My hair looks awful," the natural response is to say, "Noooo, it looks great!" To "My makeup is too thick" we say "I think it looks fabulous!" So, naturally, when someone says "I'm fat," the instinctual response is to say, "No, you're not!" But you can't really say that to a person who is obese because, well, everyone - including the obese person - knows it's not true. There is no scripted response when that person talks about his or her weight. There's no obvious reply. People shift in their seats. They look at their feet. It's uncomfortable. I know. Don't worry. Here's all I'm tryin' to say with this fable: I don't talk about it in public because I know it makes people uncomfortable. But this whole weight-loss thing is an important part of my life right now. It's changing things (I hope). It's giving me a healthier, longer future (I pray). It's an area of bondage in my life from which God is actively working to free me. That doesn't make me uncomfortable. It makes me excited. So ask me the difficult questions. Talk to me about it in casual conversation. I'm coo' wid'dat.

So that's it, y'all. That's pretty much all I have to say on the matter... for today.

Here's hoping for a great week and lots and lots of yummy, healthy food...


End of week 2: 14.5 pounds lost!

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Qualified Cheating

I broke my diet tonight. But you know what? I’m okay with that. You see, there have been times over the past week that I have been sooooo tempted to scarf down a cheeseburger at McD’s, or devour a HUGE slice of death by chocolate cake, or inhale a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. But I have resisted because I’m doing my very best to keep the end results in mind: “Will that decision help me become who I am called to be?”

So what happened tonight? Well, for starters, I ate real sushi for the first time in my life. Some of it I loved; some of it I did not love. I also ate a salad with a scrumptious, flavor-packed ginger dressing. So while I did break my diet, it’s not like I went all-out, deep-fried, chocolate-smothered, butter-laden fat. I had fish and rice and lettuce and ginger. Mmmmm…

But that’s not why I don’t feel bad about breaking my diet tonight. The reason I feel like it was a really good decision was because of the company with which I “broke fast.” It was girls’ night ‘round these parts, and I had a blast with three lovely ladies from the office. As I got in the car on the way to the restaurant, I was completely torn as to what to do about my diet stuff when eatin' time came around. Would they have a calorie count of each and every California roll? Could I ask for “anything that doesn’t contain sugar, fat, oil, bread, rice, carbs, starch, or more than 100 calories?”

It didn’t seem likely.

But it only took a few minutes with these ladies to realize that, if I chose to stress over this meal in order to stay on the diet, I would completely lose the true blessing of getting to know the women sitting around the table with me. It was in that second that the choice became clear: a set-back in my diet is sooo worth a step forward in friendship. And I have a feeling, these friends are gonna be totally worth it…

And so, as we sat down at the table, I smiled: “I’ve never eaten real sushi before. What do y’all like?”

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Movin' and Groovin'

Can I just say, tonight ranks pretty high in the great nights of parenting.

In one night, Maple Anne said her first word AND semi-crawled across the floor.

There was one night a few weeks ago where we thought waving arms and "bah bah bah" was actually her first word of "bye, bye." We were wrong. But then... tonight... she dropped a toy and said, "Ah, Uh oh!" Of course, I was alone in the room and thought, "Yeah right, that was a fluke." So when Brandon walked in, I said, "I swear she just said 'Uh oh'." As if on cue, she giggled and said, "Uh oh." It has been the word of the night. When she drops something. When she topples over. When she just feels like talking: "Uh oh."

Not too long after that first word, we put her on the floor to do her standard roll-around. Next thing we know, she's doing a military-style crawl across the room. Arms and legs were moving in time; she was moving forward in one certain direction. All she's lacking is actually getting her belly off the ground. Still, this too was no fluke. We kept moving toys several feet in front of her, and she kept military crawling to get them.

All the while, big sister Chloe was clapping and cheering and encouraging her on.

I tell you what, it was a big night in the Thixton household. A big, big night.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Day 5: teeny tiny crisis

It's way past my bedtime. I breezed past the laptop on the way to take my night-time meds, but as I turned to head towards the sound of snores that were wafting from my bedroom (poor hubby has a cold), it beckoned. I swear, y'all, it called my name. And since I didn't blog yesterday (oops!) I thought I'd pop in for a little update.

Physically, things are bit rough today. My hormones are going a nuts, as evidenced by the THREE hot flashes that laid siege in the early morning hours. I'm not very hungry these days. As a matter of fact, I realized at lunch that I had completely forgotten breakfast! It was a super sweet treat to have an extra piece of fruit to munch on this afternoon.

But I don't want to talk about the diet or the hormones or the hot flashes or the food tonight.

Because today, today I have had something else on the brain. It's something that has been bugging me for a few months now, but it really came into focus as I stood in the face-wash aisle of the new CVS down the road.

I think, perhaps, I'm having a mild identity crises. I said mild, y'all, calm down. You see, up until January of 2009, I pretty much knew who I was. I knew my favorite beverage (Starbucks Sumatra with one pack of Sweet'n'Low - NOT Splenda). I knew my favorite color (red). I knew what I like to wear (hats and scarves and red red red). I knew myself. And I was pretty (perhaps overly) confident in that person.

Then I went to Korea. Korean coffee is instant - with cream and sugar already mixed in. I drank it every single morning for a year. Now I must have cream and sweetener in my coffee (preferably sugar or Splenda). And red? Well, nobody decorated with red EVER. And do you want to know who wore red clothing? Sweet old ladies. So now I don't know... do people my age wear red in America?

But it goes deeper than all that...

I'm having a hard time putting this into words...

Before Korea, I didn't have time to think about who I was because I was too busy thinking about what I was doing. Life was overwhelming. Work, school, church, babies, cooking, cleaning, driving... I swear I spent half my life in the car.

But when I went to Korea, and after the initial culture shock wore off, I realized that I really like who I am. I got to think - free of any of the things that had previously identified me. My job, my cooking skills, my unique (read: odd)fashion sense - all of those things were gone. It was just me, in my quiet home.

But now I'm back. And life is busy again. Job, church, grocery store, hair cut, car wash, bank, pediatrician, preschool... and in the midst of this hubbub, I find myself struggling to find a footing.

So where does the face wash aisle at CVS come in?

I have a $1 coupon for one - rather pricey - brand of face wash. I may or may not have mentioned that I LUH-HUV me some Korean face wash, and the last itty-bitty bit of my very last bottle ran out... two weeks ago. (Shampoo is a poor substitute.) So I'm standing in the aisle debating over whether I should get the brand for which I have a coupon or get cheaper, less appealing brand sitting next to it. (Just so we're in the same ballgame here, I'm talking about a price difference of about $2.) Seriously, y'all, I stood in that aisle, like, 10 minutes. Then I put it down and walked around. Then I came back and picked it up.


And as I'm sitting there debating over this $2-more-expensive face wash, I heard a clear question in my mind: "Does this product fit into who you want to be?" And the answer surprised me: yes.

When I was using the Korean face wash, which gave me silky-smooth skin and small pores, I felt beautiful. I felt confident. And though (I'm sure) no one else in the world could tell a difference, I knew - I felt - that I was beautiful.

Good face wash... makes me a better person.

And with that rather unsettling fact floating around in my head, I have realized something that I have somehow missed up to this point.

Last year, the year of the reset button, we were handed a fairly blank slate in life. Most of the mistakes we have made - especially in the area of priorities - were completely wiped away. And as we took our first steps on American soil, we were walking into a new life. Praise God!

But here's the thing about blank slates... they can become whatever you want them to be. They can be beautiful or ugly. Brite or dark. They can be a unique masterpiece... or they can look exactly like another one you've seen (or lived) before.

And as weird as it sounds, I feel like the question that was posed to me in the face wash aisle of the new CVS is one that the Lord has given me regarding every single area of this new life He has given us.

Does this decision... this action... this hobby... this purchase... this attitude... this bite of food... fit into who I want to be?

But more importantly... does it fit into who I AM in HIM?

These are questions I plan to ask myself a lot more often.

Thank you, Lord, for crumbling my city, and thank you for rebuilding my walls.

The Quote That Started It All...

I myself have twelve hats, each one representing a different personality. Why be just yourself? - Margaret Atwood