Hello 2008!

It’s going to be a great year. I just know it! I’m not really into resolutions, but I do have hopes and intentions. In 2008, I will:

Be gentler to myself.

  • That means that when I’m frustrated and disappointed after surgery while I try to learn to eat again in a different way, that’s ok. Perfection is not the goal; rather, health is the only prize.
  • I start a PhD program in August, but again, the goal is not perfection. I cannot do everything at once. To do well in this program, I may need to work less or go away for writing weekends or let go of other distractions. I don’t have to do it all.

Make time for myself.

  • I don’t have to over-achieve to be noticed. I don’t have to schedule every last hour of my life with some kind of work that equals achievement. It’s ok to rest. It’s ok to breathe. It’s not lazy, it’s good self-care.
  • Instead of devoting so much of myself to caring for and worrying about others, I will take care of ME in the following ways: meal planning, support groups, therapy, exercise, and rewards. Those 5 things are the signals of how well I’m caring for my body and my mind.

Be gentler with others.

  • As I learn to accept imperfection in my own life and learn to be more gentle with myself, I will extend that kindness outward to my husband. He isn’t perfect. He won’t be perfect. This year will be hard with my emotions flying all over the place, but he is wonderful and trustworthy and steadfast and he deserves the best wife the world has to offer.

And now, to indulge my planning nature, a list of expectations /hopes /changes by month:

  • January is all about preparing my mind for surgery. Buying vitamins, creating a schedule, organizing time off from work, etc. Pre-op appointment is the 17th, surgery is the 22nd. In January, the odds in my battle against this weight shift dramatically and I have a new tool that will make it possible–even probable–that I will succeed in achieving a healthy weight. And this month, I turn 26 years old.
  • February is about continued recovery and liquid or soft foods. I expect it to be difficult, but I can also expect a loss of 20-30 pounds by my 1-month post-op appointment. Goodbye, size 24’s!
  • March will mark a new commitment to exercise. I will be released for moderate physical activity and can walk, swim, bike, and otherwise commit to physical health. I will learn to eat solid foods for the first time after surgery.
  • April brings clearance for full-on vigorous exercise. At 3 months post-op, I can expect 35% of my excess weight to be gone, which would bring me to about 242 pounds. That’s pretty darned unbelievable! As part of the vigorous exercise regiment, I’d like to learn to SCUBA in preparation for a trip to the Keys this summer. April will also bring Lee’s 27th birthday!
  • May will bring more exercise, more weight loss, more self-care.
  • June will bring our 4th wedding anniversary and a dive trip to the Keys with family and friends (if all goes as planned). Good times!
  • July will bring my 6-month anniversary after surgery, which could see a loss of 60% of my excess weight which would put me right at 201 pounds. I’m aiming for the one-hundred’s instead!
  • In August, I start the PhD program and move once step closer to accomplishing a goal I’ve had since high school. It will be hard work, but with fulfilling rewards! Depending on fellowship guidelines, I may need to change my employment situation to part-time (and then figure out how to pay the bills).
  • In September-December, I’ll have my first holiday season post-op and will be in the thick of a fall semester of coursework. At Christmas, I’ll be 11 months out and I’ll have another great year to be proud of!

In all, 2008 will be full of great things. Thank you, God, for new opportunities, new beginnings, and another year full of wonder.

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2 Responses

  1. Love your list, Meg! I need to remember the bit about my husband myself…I can be too critical at times and need to remember to look at myself in the mirror daily. It’s one of those things I want to change about myself this year.

  2. I think your goals and plans sound really good. March is going to be the hardest – I’m moving to solid foods now… and it’s tough! I’ve had two meals that have brought on throwing up, and I haven’t done that since LONG before the surgery… so it’s a little strange.

    Good luck with preparing for the surgery – it really will be the best thing you’ve ever done for yourself… but make sure to do EVERYTHING they tell you to at the hospital… walking as soon as you can after surgery and as much as possible will really help. I walked about 4 hours after surgery and walked at least every hour or two hours…

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