Friday, January 30, 2009

And so it begins....

So where was I? Oh, yeah. 235. Yuck. When I saw that number, I was in shock. I remember when I was younger, and I got up to 160 at around the time I had surgery on my foot, and I felt like a house. So, how did I let myself go to 235??? I guess how I got there isn't as important as the rest of the story. The story of my fighting my way back...

It took me a lot of time to let go of the guilt. I still don't think I have let go of all of it. I still get really paranoid after working out and go to check my phone. I worry about my kids needing me, or my husband, and million other things. Sometimes I take my phone with me. Sometimes I don't. Ya, I have paranoia issues. But, considering the past, I think I am allowed a little.

When my size 18's quit fitting and I was just wearing sweats all the time, I knew I had to do something. A few small changes made a big difference. I have tried many different things over the last 3 years, MANY, MANY things, and I will share the good, bad and the ugly with you. We'll talk about what works, what doesn't and everything in between. What works for me, might not work for you, and vice versa. But, maybe something I say will spark something in you. I hope you find the same spark that I have right now. Let's take this walk together and see what we find.

Let's start with my Weight Watchers review. I did weight watchers BEFORE I hit 235, before my mom died, and before I really got serious. It was on the way UP to 235 that I tried it. Maybe back in 2003 or so?

I have NOTHING but positive things to say about Weight Watchers. Now, I didn't go to the meetings. I was too scared and ashamed to actually go to Weight Watchers meetings, so I can only comment on the online version of Weight Watchers. It was a wonderful tool for me. When I first started, I had no idea about portion sizes or what I needed to eat, or how much or how often. WW was a great tool for learning about portion sizes without needing to know specifics about calories, proteins, carbs and fats.

They make it very easy for beginners. They have a nifty online tool that helps you journal your food. This is the key aspect of the program. To be able to lose weight, you have to be aware of how much you are eating. I have found over and over, in talking to countless people, that once they start journaling, they are absolutely flabbergasted when they realize how much food they are eating.

I know that sounds crazy, but ask anyone who's been down this road. The first step in losing weight and starting the healthy journey is to be aware of what you are doing wrong. WW really helps with that.

They have lots of online support forums to help you learn the system. It's a neat site. The cost got to me, as well as boredom eventually. I am like a 3 year old that needs to be constantly amused. I swear, I am such a pain. I got sick of journaling. I got sick of counting points. I slipped into my old habits. I probably lost 10-20 pounds on WW.

It wasn't the magic key for me, and I quit and gained the weight back. Like I said, it just wasn't for me. I know many people who love the program and have good success with it. I'd love to hear from you if it worked or not.

In my next blog we'll talk about Atkins.... ah, delicious meat! LOL.

Love, laughter and light,

Mrs. ChildFun

Monday, January 26, 2009

Time to get this blog rolling...

The story behind this blog started before this blog started. Ha. How's THAT for confusing? My mom was morbidly obese. So was her mother. So was her mother. So was her mother. Gee, seeing a pattern here? My only genetic hope is my father's family was slim. My mom always said I looked like him and acted like him. Maybe there is hope for me yet!

Anyway, I have always struggled with my weight. I wasn't obese as a child, but I wasn't slim either. And because not only was I not the slim one, I was also the REALLY poor one in a town full of fricking snobs, and so I got picked on. I can still hear the joyful calls of "Fatty Fatty Two by Four Can't Fit Through Any Door." Oh, what a joyful childhood I had. NOT!

Well, after 6th grade hit, so did I! My baby fat turned into curves and as a teen, I had a pretty nice body. Looking back at photos, I was pretty decent. But my childhood stuck with me, and of course, I still thought I was fat. Ugh. Eating disorders! That's a whole nother chapter of my life that I don't want to discuss here, but I am just giving some background as to how I got where I am today.

Fast forward to adulthood. My weight hovered about 130-145. I looked good, but would have looked better and felt better if I could lose 10-15 pounds. Between 120-130 I feel and look great. Feeling good of course being the most important!

Anyway, I met the most wonderful man in the whole world. Got married. Had three kids. Not to skim over them, they are my everything, but this blog isn't about them. It's about my fat ass. HA! I gained a lot of weight with my first two pregnancies, then lost it, then did a little better on my third, but never really lost it all. After my daughter, the lowest I went to was 150. Then things went haywire.

Over the next several years, stress sort of took over. My husband and I had some issues to work on with each other. We had financial problems. We had car problems. We had just problems that every young couple goes through. Then 9/11 came. It changed my life. I know it changed many people in many ways. For me, it made me take a good hard look at my life, and how much I love my family and how I wanted to be around them forever, so I did the one thing I could to insure that I would be here as long as possible....

On October 2, 2001 I quit smoking. That is where this journey begins, because that is the event that changed my life and my weight to go up dramatically. It was slow at first. 5 pounds here. 10 there. I kept fooling myself and telling myself it was okay, because I was healthier not smoking. Yeah, but I was drowning myself in food. Unhealthy fat filled crap. Then I had foot surgery. Packed on more pounds. It spiraled out of control.

By the middle of 2004, I was up to 198 pounds! I knew I couldn't let myself go over 200 pounds. So, I joined the YMCA and started going regularly. I swam, I walked, I lifted weights, I did it all! The pounds were melting away.

By the time March 2005 rolled around, I was down to 170 pounds. I was feeling wonderful. I was working out on a regular schedule, my husband and I were past all our issues from our younger years and had settled into a wonderful comfortable best friend/lover relationship and my mother had moved to my town to spend more time with her grand kids. Life was finally going the way it should.

Now, remember I said she was morbidly obese? Ya, she was. She had a lot of medical issues because of it too. A LOT. Diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, heart problems, knee problems, getting out of bed problems, walking problems. I mean, she was a ticking time bomb. Her life was really sad. She was so fat she couldn't drive or walk or do most things on her own. And it made her sad. So she ate more. I never knew for sure how much she weighed, but I think she was close to 500 pounds. Boy, how can someone let themselves go that badly? I knew I would never do that to myself. I worked out longer and harder every chance I got.

In fact, I went every weekday. The kids left for school, I left for the gym. Until March 3. That was the day I got done with my shower after working out and saw that I had 26 missed phone calls. The first few were from Mom. The next few were from Lifeline. You know the "I've fallen and can't get up people." Listening to the voice mails was like someone was ripping off my fingernails. It was that painful.

The first couple of Mom said things like, "Honey, I don't feel so good. I am having trouble breathing. Call me back." The next was "Honey, I can't breathe. I am scared. Where are you?" The next was hard to understand because she sounded so bad, but the gyst of it was that she was calling 911.

She ended up pressing her lifeline button, and they called me. By the time I got all these calls, Mom was in the emergency room fighting for her life. Congestive heart failure. When I walked in, she looked awful. She had this giant mask on her face, and her eyes were scared. For the first time in her life, it finally dawned on her what all her horrible eating habits had done. Her eyes were sad and she looked at me and said, "Where were you when I needed you?" The guilt washed over me in waves.

I always knew she was a very selfish person but that's a whole nother blog too. Again, this one is about me and how I got to where I am today. She is just background right now. But, that one comment sent me into a tailspin. I never left her side. I stayed every minute of every day. It didn't take long. I didn't leave her side until the limosine pulled away from her gravesite....

And then I ate. And drank. I drank more than I ate. But then I'd get drunk and eat. And I stayed drunk for a long time. Staying drunk doesn't really erase guilt, but it made a nifty temporary bandage. That 170 I worked so hard to attain easily slipped away. The scale numbers flew up and I didn't care. I couldn't go workout. I was frozen. My mother needed me, and I was being selfish and working on me. What kind of daughter was I? Blah. Guilt sucks.

The months flew by. Fast forward to February 2006. Now, another blog would be all my health issues of a female concern. To make a long story short, I needed a hysterectomy. That sucked. What sucked more was the morning of surgery when they made me step on a scale and I saw this most disgusting thing. 235 flashed at me. 235 pounds. In less than one year I had gained 65 pounds. WOW! Part of it I blamed on the antidepressants I was taking, but a lot of it was just me....

And THAT is where this story begins. With a number. 235. That is where it all begins for real. Stick with me on this journey. Not sure where we will end up, but no matter where, it will be a wild ride!

Love, laughter and light,

Mrs. ChildFun