Week 51–Selfish, NOT Selfish

For this second to last post on this Year of Accountability journey, I want to share a couple of experiences I had this week for the way they encapsulate how this journey has moved in my own life.

For the first, my hubs has been struggling with pain for several weeks. It finally reached the point he made a doctor’s appointment all by himself (which should tell you how much he was being bothered…lol).

Now for weeks I have been telling him he needs to be moving more and his foot pain is plantar faciitis which for as much as it hurts demands movement to heal.  Of course, he wasn’t going to believe me.

For a $25 co-pay, the doctor told him exactly what I have been telling him for weeks right down to freezing a water bottle and rolling his foot on it to simultaneously stretch the fascia and quell the pain.  BOOM!!!

But, being right is not the interesting part of the conversation.

My hubs said, “Why is it so easy for me to run get parts for my truck or chainsaw and spend whatever it takes to repair it but when it comes to my body I just can’t do it.”

Though the words may change so many people feel this way too.

One of my friends struggled to accept a gift she didn’t feel like she deserved while buying gifts for those she loves without questioning her own motives.

They both indicated it feels selfish for them to focus on themselves.

So here’s my question…

Why is is so easy for my hubs to take care of his tools and my friend her family but both struggle to feel they deserve similar attention?

It’s something I have struggled with too.  If anything, this Year of Accountability has well-documented that struggle.  With two weeks remaining, I can honestly say I deserve good health which includes a healthy weight.

Do you feel you DESERVE a healthy body?

Do you?

Really?

Then what are you doing about it?

What are YOU going to do?

Your first step has to be learning it is never SELFISH to take care of yourself.  My hubs tools sit idle when he is not feeling the best.  My friend cannot be what she wants to be to her family when she is not feeling the best.  And for both, those ‘not feeling it’ moments breed more negative feelings.

But, the struggle is real.

For a myriad of reasons, most of us are conditioned to care for things and people better than we care for ourselves.

It has to stop!

If we are serious about improving our lives–in whatever way is meaningful to us–then we have to get over feeling like we do not deserve to treat ourselves as well as the things and people we care about.

Selfish meme

Health is never selfish.

Do you hear me?

It is NOT…I repeat NOT…selfish to allow goodness into your own life.

It may take work.  Do it.

It may be uncomfortable.  Feel it.

It may be hard.  Get tough.

It may mean change.  Embrace it.

It may mean trial and error.  Experience it.

It may mean learning new things.  Study it.

It may mean growth.  Stretch for it.

I’m ready…bring it on!!!!

 

 

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Week 25–Wait, wait, wait…I see a chin

If you’re my Facebook friend, this is going to be a bit of a repeat.  It’s late.  I’m wide awake, thanks to a late nap, and I’m still cleaning house.  But here’s the thing I didn’t say on Facebook….three weeks ago I would totally trashed regardless of the nap.

If you’re my Facebook friend, you also know I have been doing the 100 Days of Selfie project.  Thanks to it I can see the progression of my face and how my thyroid levels affect my appearance.  Today I took a smiley selfie and just as I was about to post it I noticed my chin was even more defined than last week and the week before.  It’s been a while since I’ve had a non-scale victory.

Progress.

The scale, however, was trending up when I last looked on Friday morning.

Sigh.

I haven’t looked since them because honestly I needed to just not know.  I’m not being “bad” food wise I just needed to not have a stupid number ruin my weekend.  Now that I noticed my chin, I’m really glad I don’t know the number on the scale.  I know it’s partially lying to me anyway.  I know most, if not all, of the gain is water simply because my clothes still fit the same as they did a month ago even though the scale is up more than five pounds.

I’m also working a hunch.

Quite by accident I mentioned how us chronic babes need to keep an extra close eye on our hydration status during the heat–108+ in my world–and how water isn’t going to be enough so to use sports drinks to maintain electrolyte levels.

All the bells and whistles started chiming…I have been drinking plenty and still feeling parched and “off”–lethargic, weak, more tried–all signs of dehydration AND electrolyte imbalances.  Friday morning, I bought a Gatorade and felt better almost instantly.  Since then I have been working on building my electrolytes back up with homemade electrolyte solutions.

Today I wore my most restrictive socks just to see what would happen.  My neuropathy has been going nuts but the retention is not as bad as it has been.  Maybe I’m on to something.  I know I feel better.

Moving on to next week…

Week 16–No Scale, No Problem

I thought it was going to be a lot harder to have my husband put the scale up where it’s really hard for me to reach it but thanks to a drama-filled week and very little sleep I haven’t cared–too much 🙂

I did have a medical appointment during the week and I wanted to ask but the fact that it was late in the day and I was wearing my sneakers was just enough to stop me from asking.

I’m really trying to let myself follow the Lose It program and give my body a chance to adjust.  I did take a tiny peak at the scale on Saturday to make sure my body wasn’t freaking out.  I was up just a little bit but Saturdays are never my low weight and we’d had chips the night before AND I put the scale back by myself.

It was one thing to say, “Take this away from me,” and watch my husband not only take it but put it in the top of the closet but it was entirely something different to take it down, use it, breathe, check myself, and then put it right back on the shelf all by myself.

It actually felt pretty freakin’ amazing!

Non-scale victory…uh, huh, oh yeah, woot woot!

I will peek at my weight again next Saturday just to see if I’ve balanced out.  If not, I will go in and adjust my program.  If I’m on a down swing, no weighing for a month!!  Yeah, a WHOLE month.

I have also tracked every single morsel I’ve eaten without concentrating too much on hitting a certain target.  Actually, that felt pretty good too.  I did worry when I had one really high calorie day but I also watched as my body naturally adjusted the next few days with a lower appetite.

Humm, maybe my body is smart…lol…and yes I am really laughing at that one.  The smart-ness of my body remains to be seen.

Week 15–Adjusting My Sails

This has been a poopy week.  Yes, literally.  Our plumbing backed up every single drain in the house.  Some drains were even spewing raw sewage.  Gross!

The only day we didn’t have plumbers tearing up the house was Friday and that’s only because they had an emergency call and needed a full day to chip out the tile in the hall bathroom, pull the bathtub, and to repair what we are all sure is a broken pipe.  They’ll be here Monday to do that.  Just shoot me.

I bet you’re wondering why I’m using my weight loss blog to share that with you.

I am so glad you’re wondering because my point is life is going to throw you these moments and you are going to be tempted to let the stress pull you off track.  This week I avoided sinking my plan very well.

I need to tell you a little story to explain how I arrived here without stress eating.

My very first weight loss goal in 2002 was simple, “I want to lose weight gracefully.”Grace

Yep, that’s it.

Graceful weight loss?

Yeah.

I had come from a place where I had lost weight very un-gracefully.  I was exercising up to five hours a day and eating less than 1000 calories a day.  I was reading books about anorexia and was seriously disappointed I lack a strong gag reflex so I cannot induce vomiting.  I was in a terrible space in time and in my own head.

When I decided to finally shed the baby weight of four pregnancies, where for half of them I didn’t even lose the weight of the baby at delivery, I needed to find a better way so I picked “with grace” as my only goal.  About the baby weight, no, I am not exaggerating.  One delivery I left the hospital weighing MORE than when I went in and even had a 9 pound 1/2 ounce, 22 1/2 inch baby.  I also had four c-sections and was told it was normal every single time.

When that last baby was almost seven years old in 2002, I needed grace in the worst way.

Fast forward to last year, my endocrinologist flipped out when I told him they advised me it was normal.  The look of shock and horror in his eyes validated years of knowing something screwy is going on with my body.

I was so grateful in that moment to be treating my body with grace all along.  I cannot imagine the damage I would have done.

As stinky as this week was (and we’ve had more going on than just plumbing issues) I am really proud of myself for not stress eating and arriving with my grace intact.  That is one of the best non-scale victories there is.

But…

Oh you had to know there was a but coming, right?

I did give in on my need to have some illusion of control.  I do not feel bad about it either.

It-doesnt-matter-how-slowly-you-go-so-long-as-you-do-not-stopI made this my year of accountability and one of the things I need to be accountable for is how stuck the scale is and has been for a long time.  Yes, I know the scale isn’t the only measure.  My black cargo pants do not fit and haven’t since the ‘mystery’ 12 pounds.  The tape measure also isn’t moving.

After reading a weight loss success story where the loser used the Lose It website and app, I decided to give it a try.  I really like it.  I’ve been using Fitday.com since 2002 and love it but Lose It is sleeker and divides my day into breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks so it lets me see where the room for improvement actually is.

I also joined a weight loss challenge posted on the Lose It community boards.  It’s the 1/2 pound a week one so it’s not totally out of the realm of possibility BUT I also know this is danger zone for me.  My will and weight loss goals are at direct odds with my body.  So let me stress that I do not have a goal to actually lose 1/2 pound per week.  I meant what I said when I said, “No More Unicorn Chasing,” and I am not abandoning that stance for one second.  I’m new to the Lose It program so I needed a place to ask questions and this group looked safe enough.  I have already promised myself if seeing the success of others becomes a burden I’ll unclick immediately.

Scales Are For FishAnd that leads me to the next Lose It group I joined….drum roll please….

I am giving up my scale for 30 days. 

Someone send me an extra helping of grace please!

I also joined the 30 Days of Logging challenge where the goal is to log every bite for 30 days.  I’ve been slacking here and there and with a general sense of “Why do I even bother.”  That’s such a dangerous thought because I know it matters.  After one day, I already found a couple of places to tighten things up simply because the format is different.

Plus, if some things fall in place just right our lives are in for a major change and it would be so easy, too easy for me to throw in the towel and say, “I’ll be back when things calm down again.”  Honestly, knowing that potential is there is scarier than giving up the scale.  Right now, I need these challenges to keep me on track.  The 30 day format will be enough to keep me holding on through the worst of it.  (I bet you wish you knew what I was hinting at but I’m not telling until it’s a done deal.)

Goal-less and extra accountability, I love it.

Week 14–Don’t Lose Yourself Trying to Lose Yourself

The road to weight loss is not as straight as reality t.v. would have us believe.  It is real for the contestants because they have an abundance of support and help.
For the rest of us, there are so many more twists and turns along the way.  Many of us navigate those twists and turns entirely alone.  For those of us ‘suffering’–and I am not using that word lightly as most of you know I try to avoid labeling the journey that way–with stubborn weight loss, which is actually called diet resistant obesity (yep, it’s a real thing…look it up) that journey can be downright depressing and especially frustrating.
Take me for example, I’ve been at this for over 12 years.
Twelve.
Years.
In this pre-dawn moment of my life, I am tempted to say I’ve learned nothing in 12 years about losing weight.  But that really is not the truth.  The truth is I have yet to successfully apply any of that knowledge to my body in such a way that it yields the desired result.  Part of the reason why is my body does not follow the rules.  No, that’s not some lame cop-out or some dysmorphic delusion and I say that with all confidence because multiple doctors agree something is screwy.  I take an enormous amount of comfort in knowing they cannot figure me out either as they tell me to continue doing all the right things I am doing.
However, that does leave me feeling stuck sometimes.
I want to know what to do to help my body lose weight.  Everything I know to date is of little help.
It can be maddening sometimes.
When I am feeling stuck, I have developed the practice of searching for inspiration.  This week, I found others who are stuck and that helped me feel better.  Oh I’m not happy they’re stuck too.  No.  But I do find comfort knowing it’s not just me.  Sometimes my state of stuckhood can leave me feeling lost, isolated, and alone.
Now that you know my state of mind, you might be surprised to know I also took a huge leap this week and applied for a job as a personal trainer at a local gym.
Less than 24 hours after sending my resume, I was interviewed by the manager for the personal trainers.  As we talked about my journey and how I could help others she kept saying, “Wow, you really know your stuff,” or “Wow, you’ve really got the psychology part of this down.” She didn’t treat me like an insane fat girl who thinks she’s all that enough to train others.  Nope.  She treated me like a real person, like a wannabe trainer.  She even gave me a few tips about how to mix-up my own routine.
That felt great!  Super great!
At the end of the interview she recommended me for an interview with the location manager who happens to also be the territory manager for this particular chain.  The training manager said I would know by Friday so I do not think I got the job.
As much as I need a job right now, selling an obese personal trainer to their clients is about as hard as it gets.  Personal trainers are supposed to fit.  I’m not.  I get it.
Interestingly enough, this is the same gym that I did not join last week because money is beyond tight (that ended up being a good call, btw, as our plumbing backed up this week…ugh).
There is a teeny part of me who was hoping they’d look past the extra pounds so those extra pounds would have a free place to work out.
But, the part I want you to get is I applied anyway.  I applied anyway because I know WHEN I get this weight off I am going to be one damned fine trainer.  I’m living my life as if I were a fit girl…at least when I feel brave enough to click ‘send’ on an application.
But I do not always feel brave.  Honestly sometimes I feel a bit more like this post from…

I had a client yesterday who was referred to me by her general practitioner for treatment of depression. She was a beautiful young woman but her grey eyes had lost their sparkle. She had a numbness about her… a dullness that made me feel sad for her.

She said she’d had a miscarriage a few years ago, and since then she tried everything in her power to ‘fix’ her body. She didn’t eat anything sweet or yummy; she exhausted herself with a punishing exercise regime. She gave up on the one cup of coffee she used to enjoy every morning in her sunny little garden, and wouldn’t touch a drop of the red wine she used to love. She was determined to live a healthy lifestyle, to do everything ‘right’ in the hope of carrying a baby to full term if she ever fell pregnant again.

As I sat there listening to her, I was aware that her intentions were noble. Her willpower, driven by the need to hold a baby of her own in her arms, was made of steel.
But in the process, she lost her joy.
And it occurred to me there and then that the path to wellbeing can NEVER be through deprivation.

Isn’t this the truth?  Sometimes we all get so wrapped up in achieving weight loss we forget to love ourselves through the journey.  And that’s why I love the advice that came next….

There’s a lovely flow that happens when you allow pleasure into your life. When you relax into what brings you joy.
You can eat nutritious wholefoods (and you should!) in a way that lights your taste buds on fire and indulges all your senses.
You can move your body in ways that enhance your wildness, your freedom, your ecstasy.

The path to wellbeing is through JOY.
And that is what our first Soulwoman Circle is all about: Body Bliss. Finding joy through your body. Finding joy being IN your body.
Let’s make it so!
http://soulwomancircles.com/ 

(Used with permission from Soulwoman Sanctuary)

I didn’t get the job.  So what.  I was ready to put myself out there.  My body’s not ready for the “You’re hired.”  I can be both.  I am both.  It’s okay.  Super non-scale victory!

In other news, I’m pondering giving up the scale thanks in part to a conversation the training manager and I had.  My weight is ‘up’ but thanks to my nifty body fat measurement I know it’s not ‘real’.  I’m thinking I’m over the torture of weigh ins especially when my real goal is 30-percent body fat regardless of the number on the scale.  If I am really serious about that as my goal rather than a weight, then why do I continue to weigh myself?

Week 11.5—Did I Make Good On My Promise To Go Swimming?

In a word: YEP!

However, I was entirely un-emotionally-prepared for what happened during my first two seconds under the water.

To help you understand, I need to take you back to my life 27 years ago.

I was living with my mom for the first time since I was two years old.  My mom is mentally ill so it is hard to be around her but it was better than living with both of my step-grandparents (yes, both steps).  The psychological abuse in their home was more than I could handle so one day I loaded my suitcase and a friend helped me drag it around the block, down the quarter-mile of train tracks, and around another block to my mother’s apartment.  My ‘grandparents’ threatened me that if I did not come home I’d be written out of the will.  I rather impolitely suggested they keep their money.

This is NOT the pool at my mom's apartment but it is very, very close.

This is NOT the pool at my mom’s apartment but it is very, very close.

Like many apartments there was a small swimming pool.  I spent so much time in it I had patterned tan lines on my skin where the sun had permeated the white stripes on my bathing suit.  That’s a lot of swimming!

The pools aboard the Crown Princess are of a similar size to the one that was my second home.  When I slid under the water for the first time, I was back in that pool.

Sixteen again.  Free again.

I was not baptized by religion until I was in my teens and the sensation was eerily similar to the experience of being submersed in those holy waters.

Exhilaration enveloped my whole body.

While still under the water tears came to my eyes while I smiled.  As my head breached the surface I blinked away the salty, chlorine-y water from my eyelashes.  I was seeing the world for the first time.  Again.Neptune Pool

“I have to bring this back,” I nearly blurted aloud.

I was changed.

I knew it.

However, not only did I put myself in those healing waters I walked to them clothed only in my swimsuit.  No cover up.  No towel to hide behind.  Just me and my orange flip flops with the white hibiscus flowers on the soles which make no sense but amuse me just the same.

Cruising from our port side aft cabin on the Riviera deck, outside then up two sets of stairs to the Lido deck, through the doors leading to two moderately packed dining areas, through more doors, around several outdoor seating areas, and down the ladder my swimsuit clad body was on display.

Obviously, I did not die.

But, I know I am going to live…more of my life in the water holding tightly to the memory of that first moment of freedom.  It is both fitting and beautiful to me one of the Princess Cruise ad campaigns uses the tag line, “Come Back New.”  I did.

A cartoon by Yeni Karikatürler

A cartoon by Yeni Karikatürler

Found on http://crispychickenfeet.blogspot.com and used without permission from the blog or original image owner.

Found on http://crispychickenfeet.blogspot.com and used without permission from the blog or original image owner.

PS…I have already checked into fitness center membership options and I’ll be signing up next week.  I’ll also be using my only cruise ship souvenir: a Princess Cruises beach towel to help me remember I am always braver than I believe.

CI #99–No More Unicorn Chasing

Weight loss is all about changing habits.  Most people rush straight to food and fitness and there’s nothing wrong with that but weight loss is more the just changing the way we eat and move.  Weight loss has to include changing all habits which do not promote health and happiness with our bodies.

All.

No arguing.

I have a habit I need to change.  It’s an odd one for sure.  It is the kind that might even go unrecognized because it is a good habit in disguise.  Without the struggle this past year has been and without a fortuitous chain of events as the old year was slipping away and the new year would charging in I might not have really latched on to my need to change.

My good habit is creating goals but it becomes bad when I create goals for my body that are not in balance with my body.

At the end of the year I decided to keep the last goal I missed and give it a deadline of the morning I step on the cruise ship.  It would mean to reach 236.6 I would need to lose 11 pounds in 7 weeks.

Let’s forget the cruise for a sec.

That number is emotionally charged all by itself.  236.6 was what I happened to weigh on the morning of my last day of full-time work.  I was fired from my job that afternoon in large part because I became physically unable to keep up with the demands of the job.  It was my weight when I finally realized the weight of fibromyalgia.  Getting back there and taking that number back is a big deal to me.  Huge.  I can be honest about that.

Now, back to reality…

I am a woman who loves big goals and dreams.  Ask anyone who knows me.  I know that about myself and those around it know me for it.  Honestly, it’s kinda one of my favorite things about me.

Except.

It does not, never has, and likely never will apply to my body and weight loss.Habits

It bothers the ever-living hell out of me.

Yet, I keep setting those goals and pushing to accomplish them only to feel like I’m sitting on the sidelines watching my thyroid crap-out or a fibro flare to hit.  The deadline whizzes by and I’m left sad, discouraged and angry.  I pout for a while and then I pull up my big girl panties and try again.

And again.

And again.

For over 12 years!!!

There is one thing I know…

11 pounds in 7 weeks…not even if I starved myself!!!!

At best, it is an unattainable goal.  At worst, it is a symptom of habitual self-destruction.  Attaching yet another weight loss goal to another high point of my life sure sounds–and has felt–like self-destruction.  I spend a lot of time soothing my wounded will as another deadline passes without me achieving my weight loss goal.  I also miss out on celebrating the good, and even, great moments of my life because I’ve tagged successful weight loss to the event.

So I have to ask myself why would I want to attach all of this negative reality to leaving for Mexico?

That’s nuts!

I am stepping on the ship for the adventure of a lifetime.  Whatever pounds I am carrying will be along for the ride.  Is it really the end of the world if I don’t love the number on the scale that morning?  It could be…if I am the one creating that drama for myself.

Uhh, that doesn’t sound like a loving or vacation-y thing to do to myself.

Time to deal with the truth.

My truth is my body is broken metabolically, auto-immune-ly, fibromyalgia-ly, B-R-O-K-E-N!

I am not entirely in control.

Now, if I really–and I mean REALLY–know that then why on Earth do I keep setting weight loss goals only to watch my body miss them.  Apparently I’m into beating myself up.

No more.

While zillions of people are making weight loss resolutions, I resolve to avoid them.

Once I decided no more, I un-clicked my weight loss goals from Fitday.com.

Fitday.com is one of my favorite tools but sometimes it lies to me and tells me my goals are achievable. They are if I was a normal person.  I am not so it lies and I eat it up.

By the math–for normal bodies–losing 11 pounds in 7 weeks is not impossible.  It’s actually a respectable 1.5 pounds a week.

My normal average?

Oh I’m so glad you asked…one half pound.

Yeah.

On a good week I can muster a whole pound.  On a bad week I’m thrilled to pieces to see 2/10ths (the increment my scale uses).  Over time it works out to about one-half pound.

The sad thing is, for my body, this is an improvement.  Before my Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis was diagnosed, I went years averaging only one-quarter pound a week.

For my body losing what is consider a normal 1-2 pounds a week is the equivalent of unicorn hunting–something to be chased, believing it could be true, but secretly knowing it isn’t.Unicorn

No more.

And, honestly it’s kinda killin’ me.  Unicorns are awesome.  Weight loss goals that become unicorns…not so much.

I’m a goal setting, goal achieving freak and that part of me is twitching at the notion of not having a weight loss goal.

BTW,  that is precisely how I know I have a problem.

Out with the oldThe unsettled feelings in the pit of my stomach tell me I am not as loving to my body as I think I am.

If the anxiety wells simply because I un-click a goal, I’ve been in trouble for a long, long time.

This is the year that changes. 

The fear I feel lets me know I am on to something huge.

With all goals defining accountability is the best way to determine success.

My accountability is now a weekly series of ‘kiss and cry’ posts where I resolve to be open, raw, and even downright mean with myself if necessary to disconnect goals and weight loss from my psyche once and for all.

Of course, I’ll be doing the right things to inspire my body to let go of the pounds.

Of course, there are going to be weeks my body just sits there and laughs.

Of course, I’ll even have times when I get totally fed up and disgusted with my body’s passion for making me feeling the journey is unicorn-like and use that as an excuse to fall off track.

It’s all normal even the unicorn-y part.  For me…it’s normal for me.

Isn’t it about time I come to terms with what I know about my own body?

Yes.

No goals.  No unicorns.  Accountability for actions.

2015 The Year of Weight Loss Goal-Less Wisdom

 

 

My “Unoffical” Weight Loss For The Year, CI#93B (with video)

Exactly one year ago today I weighed, 277.4 pounds.  Today I weighed in at 249.6…HOWEVER…and this is why I’m calling it unofficial…I’m retaining water and flaring like a beast…but on 3 July I weighed 247.4…for a total and what I am going to call my OFFICIAL weight loss of 30 pounds.

My fellow fibro gals and guys this stupid beast can pack on the pounds overnight and my best advice: Do whatever you need to so that does not mess with your head.

Anytime the scale takes a “fake” jump I just do not count it.  Nope.  Now, if I’ve been horking down the goodies I will absolutely own and record it but gains from water retention and/or flaring, which also causes your muscles to store water and glycogen, there’s no way in hell I am ever going to say “Oops, my bad,” to that.

Here’s my Fitday.com screen shot of my weight loss.  Each one of those green dots represents a day the scale moved up or down.  There are approximately 36 down dots and I’m not bothering to count the up ones (nor did I count the down ones unless they were lower than the most recent lowest dot so going up and then down did not count until it passed the previous lowest dot).

Screenshot 2014-07-09 17.55.08Just a note about the screenshot.  To give you an accurate representation of what my weight loss looked like through the year I needed to change my “goal weight” to 247.4.  Obviously that is not my goal since I do not have a weight loss goal but in the interest of full-disclosure my next “goal weight” is 236.6–the weight I was before fibromyalgia found me.  That’s right I am just 10.8 pounds away.  I had dearly hoped to reach it today but considering my recent thyroid med change only produced a whopping .8 pound loss for the month of June it just was not in the cards.  Finding that number is the ultimate middle finger to fibro.  I know I will get there but I also know right now my body is fighting my thyroid to have a functioning metabolism and until that battle is through the very best I can do is to stay me and do all the good things I normally do.

So that’s it kiddos…30 pounds in one year…almost double my “normal” average quarter of a pound a week.  Read that again.  Even WITH fibro and a funky thyroid I DOUBLED my normal weight loss.

DO NOT LET YOUR DISEASE–no matter what it is–DEFINE WHAT YOU CAN AND CANNOT DO.

You are better than that.  Your body deserves better than that so if weight loss is on your mind you just pick yourself up and go for a walk because that has been the “magic” I have used.  Healthy food in the right quantity and movement appropriate for my battered body is what brought me here today.

People always ask “what’s your secret” and I always laugh and say, “Hard work.”  I do find it interesting that it is rare for someone to ask what the hard work is but in the event they do I share my daily routine, no matter how much I hurt–even today–is making sure I burn MORE calories than I eat.  I hurt, I move.  I don’t hurt, I move a little more.

Flares are never an excuse to stuff my face with crap to “ease my pain” and people who do that make me entirely crazy.  People…sugar is a known inflammatory agent so when your body is going berserk it is really the last thing you should be giving yourself.

Feed your body…not your pain.

No matter how comforting that sugary food feels you are wrecking your body and prolonging your pain.

Now while there is no magic to the scale creeping ever-downward, keeping myself sane with the pace and being happy with what my fibro body will allow me to do when my soul wants to run–oh if only my body would let me I would be a 5k running freak.  My real work happens–IN MY HEAD–because the difficulty level is second only to dealing with my thyroid body’s nonsense.

Do you notice I separate them from each other and who I really am and what I really want to be?

As long as my soul soars, I will THRIVE to find that balance with my different “bodies”–thyroid and fibro but also defective hip, knee, and spine–because they are just parts of my body and my soul is all mine.  Perhaps it sounds like a silly head game and I guess it is but it is also how I cope.

I am the author of my experience and my diseases are the annoying punctuation.

Today I celebrate one year.

Today I hurt like hell and to the point I cancelled part of my day–yeah, if you know me at all how often do you hear me say that–that’s where my pain levels are and I am celebrating anyway.

It’s called THRIVING.

Use the vents in the fireplace: Multi Animal Print top, December 2012, Black Jumper, December 2013 and Brown floral print, today.

Progress

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364 Days Ago I Could Not Sleep, CI#92

On this night a year ago, I knew I was taking a big step.  I was terrified.  I had been down this road so many times I was not sure I could really do it again.

I have been letting myself wander through all the memories…and Old Navy…Yeah, I can fit in their clothes now...total Non-Scale Victory!!!!

This has been an amazing year and I am so excited to let it unfold for you over the next few days.

Today was all about ending stronger than I started.

Oh I jumped in with both feet last year but I was still so nervous and timid.

Today I barreled through like it was nothing.

I’m not feeling the greatest, I feel a weather-headache coming on, and my bad hip and knee are screaming but today I know so much more about my body and I knew I would be okay…uncomfortable but okay.

 

 

An Open Thank You To Chris Powell For NOT Picking Me As A Contestant On Extreme Weight Loss, CI#84

Hey Chris Powell….THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR not PUTTING ME IN THE CASTING POOL.

Here’s why…I already decided either way I was on a mission to figure out my body once and for all.  And, In the five weeks since I sent that nerve-wracking video to you the floodgates of information have been unleashed.

As I told you in my audition, my medical issues present more than a few challenges and honestly if you had picked me I was hoping your muscles would help the doctors pay attention to the things I have been saying FOR YEARS. You see I know my body and I know when she’s not working right. But, you didn’t pick me. And because of that I keep looking and searching and NEVER GIVING UP HOPE ON MYSELF (not that I would have anyway).  I told you with or without you I was going to WIN at losing this time.  I highly suspected you would not take a chance on me and I do not blame you one single bit.  I am a complicated cookie, it is a fact–my fact–but I also know, or at least I think I do, part of the reason why you passed on me is because you could see the fire in my eyes and in my being and knew I would be okay without you.  If that is part of the reason, I just want you to know you did me the biggest favor by seeing that in me.  If not, well it is a nice enough story I am telling myself to keep me from being super sad you didn’t pick me.  Either way, I am figuring things out like never before and I am sure that the very emotional process of digging deep enough to make that uber scary video plays a huge part in why.

A few weeks ago, I was feeling pretty yucky, and yes that’s the right word for it.  My body, my thyroid specifically, was just off and had little energy to do than read articles on the internet and in my email.

Learning to harness those low energy, low health moments has been one of my greatest finds along my journey.  Whenever they happen instead of sulking on the couch I ask myself, “What CAN I do?” and then I go do that instead of frittering away my time on mindless television or getting drawn into the drama that spewing about my symptoms on social media can be.  On that fateful Saturday, I could sit and I could read.  So I sat and I read.

Well wonder of wonders I found out my almost-weight-loss surgeon’s practice added the just-right endocrinologist and have an appointment with him in a few weeks. He has already ordered the proper lab tests and will have the results waiting for me at my first appointment with a plan of action.  I like action.  It has taken me twenty years–20 YEARS–to find an endocrinologist though I honestly only knew I needed one for about the last three or four years on my journey.

But, I am not one to sit back content to wait. I was still on the hunt for any little tweak in the meantime.

What’s the scripture, “Seek and Ye Shall Find.”

Well, as I was sitting there near-motion-and-energy-less. I found a tweak I never tried.

Thank goodness for the past ten years I have kept excellent track of what I eat because I took that new information and combed through my food journal and sure enough what this new source advised matched my pattern of losing sometimes and not other times. I can demonstrate to anyone who will listen that my body gains AND loses eating the same number of calories and exercise the same amount and I’ve never been able to figure out why.  Well, for the last three weeks I have employed that very simple little tweak–a small handful of antioxidants known to help the thyroid–and I have been richly reward with the best weight loss of my life.   For the first time ever, I feel like I have a handle on Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis.

For the first time ever–and I mean ever in my whole entire life–I am losing weight like a normal person. Normal?  Me!!!!  For the first time ever, my weight loss matches the exact calorie deficit I have created.  Not only that but last week while I was battling bronchitis.  That’s right Chris, even when I was sicker than a dog I was still logging what I was eating and making sure I had the right deficit.  That is how determined I am.

I cannot help but sit here in the quiet of my day and as my lungs are still healing and wonder if maybe you and I would have ever come across this tweak because maybe I would have stopped looking because I decided to shift some of this responsibility to you. Maybe. Possible but not probable if the past 12 years of my ever-searching life stands as a testament to my determination to find MY answers.  Maybe, even with your muscles we could not have convinced a doctor to listen.  Maybe.

Had you taken such a huge risk with me and put me in the casting pool I would have been wading through that process hoping, praying to ultimately be chosen and perhaps doing less to help myself. No offense to the process but the fact is it seems right in this very moment it might have been a setback in my personal progress.  Until this very moment only a select few family members and friends knew I applied to be on the show.  Well, obviously now the whole world is going to know or at least the small fraction of it reading my blog.

So Chris Powell as much as I would have loved to meet you, work with you, be a very public example to disabled people everywhere and let’s be honest here and have you pay for the plastic surgery I am absolutely going to need at some future point, I have to give you a great big THANK YOU for turning me down. I will find a way to pay for that surgery when that time comes and maybe at some point I will still have the opportunity to meet you but the rest of it I think I can handle myself and when I cannot I know I am stubborn enough to keep looking for the answers.  I know I am already example to the handful of people following this specific blog and to hundreds, and maybe thousands, of fibromyalgia patients around the world through.

Thanks again Chris!

And for you, my dear friends who might be reading this I hope this explains all the references to “the big project.”  I have debated back and forth about opening this video to the public but today, for some inexplicable reason, I feel strong enough to send it flying through cyberspace.  Be kind, and if you cannot, be quiet.  Please.

Here’s the link to the full 15 minute video as Chris Powell and the Extreme Weight Loss Casting Team saw it: https://vimeo.com/user24777484/videos

Credit unavailable.  If you know the source of this image, please let me know.  As best as I could discover it was a free graphic.  If it is not, please notify me otherwise.

Credit unavailable. If you know the source of this image, please let me know. As best as I could discover it was a free graphic. If it is not, please notify me otherwise.