Hi. I am not dead.

This sad, sad little blog has been abandoned. Poor thing. There’s a lot going on in my world right now, and for some reason I think of this space as diet-and-exercise and weight-loss related. That’s not really where I am right now (though I could sure use a swift kick to get my nutrition in gear).

So! In the spirit of old times, how about some bullet points?

  • Let’s start with the bad news. I should weigh about 145 right now to be “normal.” If I had maintained all my loss, I’d still be at 161. Instead, I’m right at 185ish. I know! But it’s okay: I know healthy practices, I know how to treat myself well, I know what I need to do. Not about weight, just about wellness. It’s all good.
  • Now! Good news: my PhD program is progressing and I am 100% officially DONE with classes! That went super-fast, right? Now I have the next two years to pass my comprehensive exams and write my dissertation.
  • Better news: I’M PREGNANT!!! Only 8 weeks, so it’s super-early, but I’m super-excited. So excited, in fact, that I went and picked up furniture already and every time I think about it, I squeal “there’s a CRIB in my house!!!”

Lee & I planned this pregnancy so that the baby will be born after my exams and before I get too far into the dissertation. I have so many women in my life who struggle with infertility that I didn’t really know what to expect and didn’t take for granted that this would be fast or easy. I figured we’d try through August, and then see what happens. Surprisingly, we got pregnant quickly. Now we’re praying constantly for a big fat healthy baby! Unofficial due date is November 30th. Baby by Christmas!!

This is so exciting for my family, but it’s also hard. I have a cousin who is 31, and she has been trying to get pregnant for the last four years. Her husband is an officer in the Air Force, and he’s constantly leaving for duty or specialized training. I absolutely hate that while he’s off fighting for our freedom, Lee & I are getting pregnant at the first try. Their infertility is completely unexplained–there are no physiological causes that have been identified. Nobody understands why this happens, and I only pray that Candace and Jason will get their baby soon! Candace doesn’t live nearby and hasn’t said anything to me about the pregnancy, but I know she knows. It’s hard for her, and I wish I could fix it. 😦

But! We all know God has a plan for every family!

I also have a cousin (other side of the family) who decided to try for her second baby and got TRIPLETS! Out of the blue! The babies are due in 6 weeks, and although she’s on bedrest, the pregnancy has gone incredibly well. Triplets are coming soon, and that means a summer of baby boot camp for me!

So yeah, babies everywhere. Also, books everywhere. Time to get back to studying! One exam in August, two in September!

Signed, sealed, and (almost) delivered!

Three weeks from tonight, I’ll be laid up in bed moaning and groaning in agony. But it will be worth it, because I’ll be rid of my batwings. And I’ll have acquired a ginormous set of new boobies!

Out with the old, in with the new! Maybe I’ll even get a smashing new tank:

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I kid, I kid.

But really… remember all that talk about “do I want implants? do I not? isn’t it weird get implants? shouldn’t I be natural? I’ll just get the smallest implant available.”

Screw all that. When you get in the room and you try on a surgical bra and actually place the implants inside to get an idea for the size, it’s soooo easy to just say bigger! Bigger!! BIGGER!!

When I said I didn’t want anything insane, Dr. Hartog said, “Okay, we can place a 200cc implant during the lift. If you decide bigger, we can place the implant, leave a tube hanging out, and fill it a week after the lift so your tissue has time to heal before we stretch it back out.”

He knew me better than I knew myself.

I tried the 200. I tried 225. I tried 250.

The nurse smiled a knowing smile and handed me 300.

325.

350.

375!

We stopped there. I was kinda having a crazy identity crisis seeing myself in the mirror with ta-tas again. How I’ve missed them! And cleavage! Remember cleavage?!

My mom and Lee came with me, and it was hilarious. Lee was getting more and more excited with each bigger size. The poor guy was ready to do back hand springs when I kept trying bigger ones!

I lost my mom at 350. For her, that was the max size that didn’t look unnatural. Lee is trying to convince me 375 is the only possible solution or else the earth will crumble.

In my opinion, 350 is luscious and large and proportionate. 375 is hot dayum nice rack! and not exactly, shall we say, conservative.

The nurse thought anything smaller than 300cc’s was too small, and that any where from 300-400cc’s would look right on me.

So here’s what we decided on:  an implant that can be filled within the range of 325-390. So Dr. Hartog will place those implants during my breast lift, leave a little tube out, let the incisions start to heal, and then actually fill the implant with saline one week after the surgery. And we’ll do it in front of a mirror so I’ll actually be able to see my boobs inflate and deflate to the exact fill size I want. How cool is that?!

So I’m signed. (Eight million consent forms)

Sealed. (Paid. Bye, bye savings!)

And almost delivered. (three weeks three weeks three weeks!!)

Bye bye arms. Hellooooo boobs!

Itty Bits

Some good things:

  • My sister Rachel is coming with me to the conference in Rhode Island the weekend of March 28th. We’ll stay for a few days, boom in and boom out of my presentation, and get lots of sister time! We haven’t traveled together in ages. I’m really looking forward to quality time with her! (And I’m glad I won’t be traveling all by my lonesome.)
  • I’m off hormonal birth control for upcoming plastics (since hormonal birth control is a risk factor for blood clots). Being off birth control has forced Lee & I to think long and hard about when we want to try for kids, and we’re praying together and separately about this issue. But the good news is that we’ve identified a “window” of time to start trying that we can pray about. I’ll spare you the OCD spreadsheet where I worked this out, but we’ve identified April 2010 through August 2010 as an ideal time to conceive. That’s more than a year from now, which means a baby would be two years from now. And I know these things can’t really be planned to great detail, but this is huge for us. We’ve got a window picked out and we’re praying about it!
  • My scale is finally moving again. I’m 168.2 today. Still hoping I can reach 155 by May, but we’ll see about that.
  • I had a counseling appointment this week, and it’s the first time I’ve been since December due to scheduling conflicts. It was SO GOOD to get back there. I’m convinced it’s part of me transitioning into a well-balanced, healthy life! I won’t go forever, of course, but I’m grateful to have my counselor right now!
  • I’m making homemade chicken soup for dinner. I’ll be trying a whole bunch of new recipes this week as I’m trying for more fiber, lower calories for both me and Lee, and I’ll post anything that turns out to be good!

And now I’m off to study and have a great weekend. 🙂

Stolen from Dooce

A meme about me & Lee:

What are your middle names?
Ernest and Louise. According to our middle names, we’re approximately 85 years old.

How long have you been together?
8 years, 2 months, and 1 week since our first date. Just short of 5 years since we got married.

How long did you know each other before you started dating?
The first time I talked to Lee was when he asked me out. Apparently, he had been “studying” me for months, but we never talked to each other. Which is weird since we went to the same high school, worked in the same store, and had a few mutual friends. I just totally never noticed him before!

Who asked whom out?
Lee asked me out, but first he had several people ask me what I was looking for in a guy, if I  liked anyone, blah blah blah. So he had friends do the preliminary work and then he asked me on a date.

How old are each of you?
I just turned 27. He’ll be 28 in April.

Whose siblings do you see the most?
I have one sister who lives in Jacksonville. Lee has 5 sisters and a brother who live within 20 miles. You do the math.

Which situation is the hardest on you as a couple?

Something that’s hard on both of us is dealing with our extended families. On my end, I cannot deal with some of the drama and selfishness of his mom and other relatives. From his perspective, my side of the family demands way too much time… get-togethers for every occasion and often for no occasion at all!

Did you go to the same school?
We went to the same High School but didn’t know each other then.

Are you from the same home town?
Yep! We both call Apopka, FL home although you could safely say we had two entirely different experiences of the same city.

Who is smarter?
In terms of reading people or “street smarts”, it’s Lee. I’m naive and would probably get us killed in two shakes. In terms of “book smarts,” definitely me.

Who is the most sensitive?
We’re both sensitive about different issues, but I’d definitely say Lee is more sensitive than I am. I have a background full of security–I know that no matter what happens, I have people who love me, that I’ll be fine, and that life goes on. Lee has been through a lot and doesn’t have that underlying calm that comes from a solid, peaceful upbringing. Because of that, he reacts to lifes ups and downs a bit more than I do. At least that’s how I see it! Now if somebody called us both ugly, he’d forget about it and say “screw them!” and I’d be worried I was ugly for three days. So maybe it’s a tie?

Where do you eat out most as a couple?
Wherever Lee wants. He’s so picky! He loves Chili’s. I’m sick to death of Chili’s.

Where is the furthest you two have traveled together as a couple?
South Carolina. Gawd, we need to get out more! (I’ve been to Nicaragua and Spain, but poor Lee has never left the Southern US and Caribbean).

Who has the craziest exes?
Lee and I both have only 1 significant ex, probably since we met so young. Neither of us talk to those exes, and I don’t think either of them are crazy! In fact, they’re both nice people! Lee has had, however, a crazy stalker. She worked at Chick-fil-a where he used to get lunch, took a liking to him, and started following him to work. He had to have management escort her out of his store, at which time she threw BBQ packets at his car. That chick was bananas.

Who has the worst temper?

Another hard one! I have a temper in the sense that I can get irritated pretty darn fast, and then I’ll be all snippy and pissy. But I don’t ever get, like, mad. I’ve never really seen Lee with a temper, but that that’s probably because when he gets upset his response is to LEAVE THE SCENE. If he’s mad at me, he’ll go for a drive or something. But I have seen him almost rip a guy’s head off once. That was a pretty scary experience. I know Lee could protect us if needed!

Who does the cooking?
I do basics like daily dinners, but Lee makes fancy meals, desserts, and big breakfasts. So I do the daily stuff, he does the good stuff!

Who is the neat-freak?
Lee loves everything to look spotless. SPOTLESS! But. If you open his dresser drawers, they are INSANELY DISORGANIZED. I am the opposite. Things may look askew, but I know where everything is, and there’s an order to it, and each item has its place.

Who is more stubborn?
I am.

Who hogs the bed?
Neither of us, now that we have a King!

Who wakes up earlier?
Lee gets up for work pretty early, but if it’s a day we’re both off I will always wake up first. I’m a morning person!

Where was your first date?
An arcade at the mall, McDonald’s, and a movie. He tried!

Who is more jealous?
Neither of us. I know he works with skanks who would love nothing more than to ruin his marriage. He knows I’m getting more looks now that I’ve lost a lot of weight. We both know we’re coming home to one another at the end of the day, so it’s all good!

How long did it take to get serious?
Well, we immediately started dating each other exclusively and we spent every waking moment together. But it was probably 4 months before it was, like, serious. We got engaged after dating for two years.

Who eats more?
Lee. He always has.

Who does the laundry?
Me unless Lee is looking for a beat-down! Seriously, I hate when he attempts laundry. He washes my stuff all wrong, stuff shrinks, he puts it away in the wrong drawers… disaster! (ok so maybe I’m the neat freak.)

Who’s better with the computer?
Me.

Who drives when you are together?
Depends. Usually Lee, but if he thinks people are driving crazy and he starts getting upset, he’ll ask me to take over.

I totally fainted

I want to write about this mainly for documentation. I *hope* it doesn’t keep happening!
So I’ve noticed that sometimes when I’ve been sitting awhile and I stand up, I feel a little faint, as if blood is rushing away from my head. I have to kind of stop, wait a second, and then walk wherever I’m going. This is my new normal, no big deal, I’m used to it.
Last night, Lee & I went out to dinner with some friends. Before dinner, I was trying not to snack, so I made coffee in the afternoon. I had 3 cups of coffee between 3pm and 6pm, and I knew I’d be over-caffeinated.
Dinner was at 8 at Kiku, a Japanese steak house. I had a few bites of rice, veggies, chicken, and steak and got full. I brought the rest home and munched on leftover rice while I was packing Lee’s lunch for today. Then I had a banana because I was dying for something sweet. (Hello high glycemic index: rice + banana!??)
So I finished watching CSI and went to join Lee in bed. Since I was so hyped on caffeine from earlier, I started reading in bed to fall asleep. Once I was sufficiently drowsy, I stood up to turn of the lamp.
And that’s all I remember, until Lee came rushing to my side. I woke up on the floor. I could see that I set my book on the night stand, so I remembered I had gotten up to turn off the lamp. I could feel that I must have hit my head on something because it hurt like crazy. I fell so that my face was actually touching the carpet! This was not a graceful fall! I still have no memory after standing up.
I guess I fainted?
Then all could do was laugh about it. So as I lay there in bed, all caffeinated, I started wanting to write this down. But now I was feeling sweaty and shaky, as if I was on the verge of fainting again. I’d sit up, wait to see if I could stand, and have to lay down again. If I stood up, I was going to pass out.
Eventually, I woke Lee up and asked him to bring me an apple and some paper so I could write (the caffeine was making me want to write to-do lists!) When he got frustrated with me because I kept waking him up, I felt bad and started to cry. Then I couldn’t stop laughing again. I have no idea if the emotional state of this whole incident is relevant, but I don’t do a whole lot of giggling or crying over stupid stuff, so it seems relevant to me.
So. I ate my apple. I had my paper. And as started writing, I noticed my handwriting was ridiculously shaky. Like kindergartener-style. Obviously, I was in worse shape than I realized. After the apple, I felt a bit better and was eventually able to stand and turn off the lamp.
I slept like a baby the rest of the night.
So. Is this low blood sugar after rice and banana (STUPID me)? Does that make this reactive hypoglycemia? Is this a “swoosh”? What the crap is happening to me? (Beth, what do you think??)
I’m suddenly feeling the urge to get in to see my primary doctor and have some labs done to see if anything substantial is “off.” But if it’s just low blood sugar, maybe I can just prevent it by eating how I’m supposed to and all will be well?
Can you imagine if something like this happened right after my brachioplasty? I could seriously burst my arm stitches! I’m not having any surgery until I know I’m 100% healthy!

14 Reasons I Love Lee

Because I’m a copycat! Here goes:

1.       Lee is the most giving person I know. He always puts my needs above his own.

2.       Lee always tells me the truth, even when I don’t want to hear it.

In 2002

In 2002

3.       He gives excellent massages!

4.       The way he irons his clothes. It’s so cute how everything has to be creased just so.

2004

2004

5.       Long hugs in the kitchen when we get home from work.

6.       I am amazed that even as a child living under horrible circumstances, Lee knew what he wanted for his life and worked to make it happen. Lee is the embodiment of being “pressed but not crushed, persecuted not abandoned, struck down but not destroyed” (2 Corinth 4:8-9).

n1321527849_228526_41687.       I love Lee because he gets cranky when he’s hungry, but he returns to his normal sweet self within twenty seconds of getting food.

8.       Lee is comfortable with himself. He doesn’t care if you like his clothes, the way he talks, or the same movies he does. He’s happy being himself.

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9.       Lee has an innocent spirit. I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again—if I find out thirty years from now that he’s an angel living on earth, I will not be surprised!

10.   He’s big and strong but vulnerable, and he doesn’t hide that from me.

2008

2008

11.   If I tell him I’m sick to death of talking about cars (an obsession of his), he’ll give me a break.

12.   I love the way Lee keeps his feet touching together at all times. When he’s playing video games—his feet are crossed one over the other. When he’s sleeping—feet are crossed. Eating dinner? Feet crossed. I can’t wait to see if our kids inherit that strange habit!

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13.   I love how he puts toothpaste on my toothbrush for me.

14.   I love how sometimes we’ll lie in bed at night and sing. Dorky? Yes. But that’s us.

I’m a lucky girl!

Randomness

Since I’m refraining from the unmentionable subject, I shall proceed with my standard Bulleted List of Randomness.

  • If Jessica Simpson is fat, I want to be fat.

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  • Is it weird that I’m still upset that Nick & Jessica got divorced? Doesn’t it seem like a cosmic mistake? And I remember it was announced on Thanksgiving Day 2005. I was so sad. I’m still sad. Waaa.

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  • I am now obsessed with the OH board devoted to the unmentionable subject.
  • I am presenting at a billion conferences this semester. March 6th–Gainesville, FL; March 7th–Tampa, FL; March 28th–Kingston, RI; April 3rd–Lookout Mountain, GA; April 11th–New Orleans, LA. It’s like my world tour. Lord help me survive the next few months!
  • I love my bike, but I have my eyes on another. Lee gave me the go-ahead. We don’t have the money now, but it will be very, very difficult to restrain myself if the opportunity to buy this bike does arise. I’m drooling just looking at it!

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  • I would like to join the Bobbies. A group of women cyclists? Sign me up!
  • I’m getting tingling in my toes. I’m hoping this isn’t the beginning of neuropathy. I’m going to be proactive and get on a B-complex instead of just B-12.
  • I ordered Baby Love from my local library via books by mail. I love Rebecca Walker and her famous writer mother Alice Walker. I can’t wait to read about Rebecca’s decision to “choose motherhood after a lifetime of ambivalence.” Something always resonates with me when a Walker writes, so I can’t wait to devour this book.
  • I want to get my husband eating healthier. It wouldn’t be that difficult, since I prepare all of this man’s food! I feel so guilty when I pack his lunch every day with two Orange sodas (45g of sugar EACH!) because I’m too lazy to prepare him some splenda-sweetened tea in a thermos. Heart disease, stroke, and diabetes run in his family (like many african-americans) and I have a responsibility to do what I can to prevent it. I need to find alternatives to the teddy grahams, cheetos, and little debbies. I wouldn’t feed it to myself, so why am I feeding it to him? LAZINESS. Bad wife!

And that is all for now!