Letter of Forgiveness

Dear Meghan,

You’ve come a long way! The steps you’re taking now are the steps you’ve wanted to take, have thought about taking, have started to take… since you were 13.

But stop and take inventory of yourself for a second: you have a spring in your step. A spark of energy in your personality. A blooming sense of confidence. You’re not stagnant… you’re moving full speed ahead!

The 13 year-old who wrote a letter to herself is beaming. The 18-year old is cheering you on. The future You is doing backflips in excitement.

You’re doing all the work it takes to stop, turn around, and walk a different path. The daily decisions you make are inching you one step closer to the person you want to be.

This isn’t everybody’s story, this is YOUR story. And the work you’re doing will move 364 pounds further and further into your past. If you were lingering there, you might feel ashamed. But you’re not lingering… you’re plodding forward every single day, every single morning, with every single meal toward something far better. There’s no shame in turning things around.

I won’t say I forgive you like it’s done and over with. But I do forgive you, each and every day, all over again, as you make every decision.

And keep your head up.

Love,

Meghan

Taste Buds Reactivate!

Fresh out of surgery, following a month of liquids, ISS OhYeah! Protein Wafers tasted like little pieces of heaven.

Maybe it’s the fact that I’ve been able to resume somewhat-normal eating habits. Maybe it’s that “your-tastes-will-constantly-change-after-surgery” phenomena. Maybe it’s that the packages aren’t quite as fresh as they were a month ago.

But today? ISS Oh Yeah! Protein Wafers taste like freaking TREE BARK.

Weekend Wrap-Up

I have been busily keeping myself from eating all weekend. Sound crazy? Well, I mean it. Lee’s back to work, so I have two long days to be home by myself, supposedly cleaning and relaxing and doing chores and what-not. But what do I immediately resort to when I’m home by myself? Snacking. And TV. That’s the life of a fat girl, so I’ve got to build new habits. And dammit, I’m trying!

So to keep myself occupied, here’s my weekend:

Friday. I get off of work at 4, home by 5. Lee was working until 9pm, so I needed something to keep me busy. I decided to swing on by my parents’ house and spend the evening with them. Not that their house is a snack-free zone, by any means, but I missed them and wanted to chat and not sit home alone. So I went, had a great time, and left with leftovers to take home for Lee to eat (SCORE!)

Saturday, I actually had to work. My University was doing some volunteer work at the House of Hope, and I got there at 8:30 to start registering volunteers and directing people to their stations. My parents decided to come and lend a hand, and I’m so glad they did… my dad somehow became the Painting Team Captain, mom became Queen of Communicating with Teenage Girls, and I… I don’t have superpowers like they do. So I just cleaned aluminum for resale, raked leaves, and delivered water bottles to everybody else.

When that was over, I went to Chick-fil-A with my mom and dad. I ate a grilled chicken breast with cheese, which always goes down just fine. But the diet lemonade? Omigosh, I looooove it. I can’t drink with meals, but I buy it anyway and SAVE it. For a REWARD. It’s that good.

So when I got home, I decided to hit the gym. I needed to work for my diet lemonade reward, after all. I did an hour on the treadmill, burning like 680-something calories. Boo-yow!

I came home, stripped naked, started laundry, and eventually made it into the shower. What can I say, it’s not everyday you can do naked laundry, you know? (I probably just revealed way too much, but whatever).

I watched a movie on TV, did some reading, and then… my mom called inviting me over for dinner. For the 3rd meal in a row, I got to each with my folks! I ate a grilled chicken breast again, some grilled onions, and pretty much all of a small baked potato. Then my heart started racing wildly and I fell asleep. I’m thinking the potato did me in. I woke up while their movie was almost over, decided to go home, and met Lee right as he walked in the door. With leftovers from mom & dad’s again. (DOUBLE SCORE!)

Sunday, however, was rough. Lee was supposed to work 8-5, so that left me all day home alone. I’d exhausted escapes to my parents house. Grocery shopping was done. House was clean. Laundry done. And I really didn’t feel like going to the gym. So I watched a little TV, drank my protein shake, watched a little more TV, and then started chomping on some leftover spaghetti… ALL BEFORE 10 AM. Fat girl behavior, y’all.

I had to get out of the house or the cycle would continue all day. I decided to go to the beach by myself (sister couldn’t meet me) because the weather was perfect. Loaded the car, put on my swimsuit, and headed out of the driveway. But then I realized that it’ll cost me half a tank of gas, and I’m already going to the beach on Wednesday, so I turned around. And decided to “lay out” in my backyard. I did an hour on each side, and then… hubby walked in! He left a little early, so we had from about 3:00 on to hang out together, so I narrowly avoided a few more hours left home alone with nothing to do.

Lessons from this weekend?

  1. WLS doesn’t cure habits. I still have work really hard to not fall into old patterns when I’m home by myself. THAT’S MY DANGER ZONE.
  2. I need some friends to hang out with on weekends. They all have husbands off of work and little kids, so they’re not particularly available on Saturdays and Sundays.
  3. And if I can’t find a friend to hang with, I need to just GET OUT OF THE HOUSE. Anywhere is fine. The gym. The beach. Shopping. Walking. Anything… just get out!

And so there you have it. I’m a work in progress. And I’ve still got to write my stupid Letter of Forgiveness some time within the next two and half hours. And I’m stuck at 260.5 pounds. IT WON’T BUDGE. But I know I just need to be patient, because after these stalls comes the freefall!

Bathing Suit Shopping

I’m a Florida girl. It’s like the law that I have at least one new bathing suit every season. I don’t get them for vacation, I get them for, like, weekly use.

My mother is the Bathing Suit Queen. Unlike me, she has been the same size for a number of years, so she has built up quite an extensive stylish swimming suit collection. You never know which suit she’ll show up at the beach in.

Our last trip to the beach was pretty pitiful. I wore the bottoms of an old tankini, with a black tank top and black bra from Lane Bryant. It looked like a bathing suit, but dudes: tank tops and bras do NOT dry like bathing suits do. One dip in the ocean and you’re soaked for hours I tell you! And my sister? She was even worse. She showed up at the beach in workout PANTS and a tank top. (Northerners, take note: we make fun of people who wear actual clothing to the beach.) My mom literally made my sister roll up her pant legs… it was just too embarassing to sit with someone in pants!

On the one hand, I know I need a new bathing suit. I’m going back to the beach next Wednesday with all my aunts and cousins since they’re out on spring break. Even more importantly, the entire family is heading out for a beach day on April 20th: this means aunts, cousins, and UNCLES. You have to impress your uncles. (totally kidding.)

But, on the other hand, I hate bathing suit shopping. Forget about the whole body image thing… it’s the freaking ridiculous prices for plus-size swimsuits nowadays that drive me batty! And some place cheap like Target? WHY ARE THEY OBSESSED WITH HALTER STYLE TOPS? The weight of my boobs would literally BREAK MY NECK.

So my mom, being the generous and ever-stylish gal that she is, offered up her Real Woman Dollars from Lane Bryant as an incentive to get myself a new suit. That means she’s serious–it’s time for me to be outfitted. So I met mom on my lunch break and we went hog-wild on the bathing suits. I swear, I tried on EVERY SINGLE ONE they had. Because you can never tell what will look best from the hanger. That’s rule #1, by the way.

I’ve always loved tankinis, but I did try a few 1-pieces too. Those Miracle Suits everyone sells? Not miraculous. (and $150?? Are you JOKING?).

I finally decided on a pink and black tankini (which has mysteriously disappeared from the Lane Bryant website since yesterday) and a skirt-type coverup as well. Since I can’t show you what the bathing suit looks like online, I might just have to post a picture of myself in it on Wednesday.

That’s a huge maybe.

But overall, a successful shopping expedition. And I am NOT unhappy about buying that size 20 either! (size 20 Old Navy jeans on today… woot!)

Staff Meetings No Longer Suck

We had a huge staff meeting yesterday because our University is up for re-accreditation, which is a stressful time in the life of any college. Our auditors will be here in less than two weeks, so we drew every faculty and staff member on our campus together for a big audit prep party/meeting/pow-wow.

And it started like this:

Dean:  “Hi everybody, thank you for coming today. Before we get started, I’d like everyone to look over at Meghan. Doesn’t she look fantastic?”

Everyone else: “oh yes, mm hmm, yeah, you know it, work it girl!” (okay, so I only heard the “work it girl” in my  head, but whatever)

Dean: “So let’s look at this QEP document and have everyone share their department’s bulleted list of how we’re in compliance…” blah blah blah.

Normally, I’d be embarassed by the attention. But it was so brief, and so not “HOW MUCH HAVE YOU LOST?” that I actually enjoyed it.

Good times!

This might just stop you in your tracks…

I had an epiphany logging my weight today. We’ve got 39 weeks and 5 days left in 2008.

Where do YOU want your weight to be on December 31, 2008?

Me? I dream that I could be done by then, hitting a low of 140 and maintaining below 145 forevermore. And you know what? It’s possible. 3.09 pounds per week and I’m there.

I know it’s important to set realistic goals (because as slow as I’m losing, 3 pounds per week is pretty agressive). And weight isn’t the goal anyway–health is.

But seriously? I’m going to have that 39 week number in my head all day. I’m going to make this a kick-ass 39 weeks!

Water: What Goes In Must Come Out

Okay, so I’m totally sold on the 64 ounces of water per day requirement. It’s down to a science now. First bottle: during morning workout. Second: 10-11 am. Third: 2-3pm. Fourth: on the ride home from work.

Add to that my protein drink and whatever I sip on after dinner, and I’m nearing more like 80 ounces a day easily.

Hydration is awesome. I’m totally for it. But the PEEING? It’s driving me INSANE! I feel like I’m constantly getting up to go to the bathroom!

/end whine fest.