Friday, June 29, 2007

Good for me
(This is mostly going to be weight/diet and self-esteem related, so skip it if you don't like the introspective stuff.)

One of the results of DD's visit this week is a renewed sense of optimism about my health, weight and general outlook. Except for a few moments during her terrible twos, and perhaps the evil elevens, I ALWAYS knew I loved her.
What I had underestimated was her love for me.
And her brilliance!
She is a take-no-prisoners kind of woman when it comes to good self care. Several times while she was here, she challenged my negative thinking, offered positive alternatives and made suggestions on how I could make healthier choices -- especially around food and exercise.

For several years, we've mailed a journal back and forth to each other. It's kind of funny, but what gets put in the journal isn't quite the same as what gets put into emails (which are nearly daily), or letters, or cards. The journal entries cut close to the heart in both directions. What follows is a summary of the entry she wrote before she left to go back to Rhode Island.

  1. It's not a diet. Rather it's about small changes, better choices, and understanding nutrition. For her, Weight Watchers was very helpful.
  2. "If you bite it, write it." Being able to review everything you eat becomes "a tool to unlock the food part of the weight loss cycle." It's not a score card .... You control it.
  3. You WILL be hungry.
  4. Results are part of a cycle of [>motivation >action >results >]. And motivation doesn't matter as much as you think as long as you consistently take some sort of action. "Results are the biggest boost to motivation ever."
  5. Nothing tastes as good as thin feels. (Now I have heard this for 30 years or so since my first OA meeting. But I always internalized it as selling out to the "fat bigots" and size-Nazis. DD writes: "This is more about getting over the self-hate and guilt... Taking care of yourself is really liberating, even if at first the changes feel confining."
  6. Isn't she smart? I hope that if you, dear reader, have any weight, size or food issues, you can benefit as much as I have.
I bought a little week at a glance calendar and have written down everything I've eaten. I've looked up calories at http://www.calorieking.com/ . I've given myself stickers (!) for writing food down, exercising, and staying under 1500 calories. If I do all three, I give myself a big star, too. The pages visually reflect my activity and change. It's important to me that even if I make bad food choices and don't exercise, I CAN GET A STICKER!!

And I've started back at Curves.

And this image which I designed here, looks more like me that I want to admit. But when I get really down on myself, I go watch Kelly's Fat Rant Video or see what she's doing on her blog.

I'm no longer in pain. For 6 months, my knees, hips, ankles and feet hurt. When I got up in the morning, they were stiff and they hurt. When I got up from sitting, they were stiff and they hurt. Now, I'm a wee bit creaky first thing in the morning, but there is not pain. (Still a bit on stairs, but about 1% of what it was before.) Good for me.

I am feeling enough better about myself, that I went back and reviewed pictures and "autographs" in my high school year book (Next year would be my 40th reunion! EGAD.) How did I miss realizing that I had lots of friends who thought I was "cute," funny, smart, helpful, patient, creative, talented, persistent and a very good friend? How did I let my negative Mother's single opinion outweigh all of those others?

And looky here *if you're willing to read an alternative to "Skinny is all there is." *(Warning: Salty language and reasonable anger!)

So, whether you are skinny or fat or something else, will you be kind to yourself, and kind to others so that people can be their very best selves?

2 comments:

Ninotchka said...

I'm constantly working at being kinder to myself. Lately, I'm succeeding more often than not. But I can get back to that place quicker than *I'd* like to admit.

I also keep an exercise sticker calendar. It is surprisingly motivating, isn't it? It's so colorful. I love it!

wenders said...

I'm proud of you. You are not ALONE! Think about the billions that are in play in terms of industry to make us think we're never good enough. What a crock. You're making changes and being a rebel, Mama! Good work! :)