GRACEINAZ   26,322
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A Will and Ice Skates

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Let me begin by stating that no, I did not inherit a pair of skates. Rather, I am speaking of the will that lives inside of me. That will keeps me going. It's what makes me return to work each day to a challenging and demanding management job. It's what helped me to make the choices that led to my goal weight -- the first time. It's what made me pick myself back up 3 years later to repeat it once again.

And it's also what enabled me at 52 yrs old to drive myself to the ice rink and put on a pair of rental skates. It further propelled me onto the ice where half a dozen professionals were practicing. It's what made me clunk around the perimeters of the rink amid those agile, twirling skaters as they practiced performance routines while hockey players sped between us. It's what made me dare to come back again and again... to work a weekend day so I can practice during the week... and lastly to buy myself a pair of skates on my 53rd birthday.

When I put them and wore them out to the ice for the first time yesterday... I just stood there.... I literally couldn't move... could not maneuver those skates to go forward a single inch. Wondering if this was all in vain, an older man skated up to me... he had spoken to me on a couple of other occasions and was the instigator for my buying the skates as soon as I did (insisting I would never do very well in the rentals). Talking with him loosened me up a bit and I tried to push off... he left me to work it out. I grabbed a hold of the rail and shoved off -- never clunked so loud or slow before and felt every extra pound of my extra weight. Having made it around twice at the slowest speed in history, I was nearly ready to give up and return the skates.

The gentleman approached me again -- I explained the new problem. (The skates were giving me incredible pain -- their stiffness didn't help). Anyway, he suggested I talk to another skater there. Having introduced us, he left me to speak with her; I was encouraged to give it another round. Things seemed a tad bit better. After another lap, she asked my name and gave me some pointers. In 5 minutes, she helped me overcome an issue I had been having for weeks. She let me be and I stated making my rounds a little faster. Another skater approached and marveled at my progress in 10 minutes.

You know, I will probably never amount to much of a skater. And that's okay as it is not my goal to wow the world. You see, I am happy if I can just glide around on the ice and feel graceful for those few moments. I could have just sat at home but...

But is that really living? would I be content? I have lost so very much and have so little left. One thing I do still possess is life. I AM alive. I will not live a life regretting that which I never gave a chance. I may not accomplish everything I set out to but I will rest in knowing I tried those things which interest and excite me.

So I will keep showing up for that job. I will continue visiting the rink. I will get better at making the right choices for me. Those things will include exercise, food, rest and a bit of frivolity. Yes! that means a $150 pair of ice skates on a 109° day in the Arizona desert because health is not just about my body and its ideal weight. It's about what's in my heart and mind and soul... what I do for myself... it's also about what I project to the world... and what I share or give to others.

My will made me try and the encouragement of others fueled me on. Encouragement is not a little thing and I take no small delight in doing so for others. More on that in a moment...

This month is not just that of my birthday... it is also the anniversary of my mother's passing. In these few years that have gone by, I have mourned not only her loss but lamented those things she still had in her heart to do. I know that she accomplished much... loving culture and people, there were many, many times she brought those two together. She had this need to use culture to enrich other people's lives but she also entered their lives in numerous other ways: feeding, praying, caring, visiting, inviting, including, laughing, dancing, singing... Interestingly, a close friend of hers shared some wonderful, healing words about her life to me. He said, "Your mother's life was a success -- a complete success." Those words have soothed me many a time.

Now back to encouragement, “One of the highest of human duties is the duty of encouragement. It is easy to laugh at men’s ideals; it is easy to pour cold water on their enthusiasm; it is easy to discourage others. The world is full of discouragers. We have a Christian duty to encourage one another. Many a time a word of praise or thanks or appreciation or cheer has kept a man on his feet. Blessed is the man who speaks such a word.” ~William Barclay

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

IRON_RESOLVE 7/2/2014 11:45AM

    Every word written here, resonates in my heart. I miss and long for my own Mother, gone 6 years. But I hear her laughter every time one of my sisters or I laugh. I love my family the way she loved all of us. I will continue to carry out her Legacy of Love, as that was her Success.
As a Canadian, where the CANSKATE program, exists to give 6 skating rink sessions for gym class to every kid in Canada, I love to skate and wonder why I never lace up and get myself to a rink. We sure cleared the pond of it's snow when the kids were growing up. We skated then. I am going to look into it now!
Even if I have to wait till fall for public session, I will do that, and buy myself new skates.
Your Blog is so perfect to remind us that we EXIST TO LIVE
Thank you for writing this, and please give us more offerings
coming back to revisit your page

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AALLEY2 6/23/2014 5:42PM

    emoticon wow! Good for you! Skating is not one of my many activities. emoticon

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GRACEINAZ 6/25/2013 11:38PM

    Thanks for your comment! Get those skates ready emoticon

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2BEHEALTHY2014 6/24/2013 11:21AM

    Good for you for getting those skates and getting out there I the ice! I bought a pair of ice skates and roller skates when I was inky 40's. a good friend and I spent our lunch hours skating once or pavement. She had to give up skating due to health issues. I haven't skated since. Your blog had inspired me to get those skates out and try again!

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It's 8 lbs!

Sunday, June 03, 2012

Yep, it's 8 lbs but it ain't no baby and it ain't no baby fat.

So I need to lose 8 lbs and I'd like to have it off by, say, umm, next week! Please! No? Right there on that package of raspberry ketones, it says "lose a pound a day". It's doable then, right! No?

I remember now. The last time I had weight to lose I {gasp} worked at it, hard, and {more gasps} for a long time. Yes, the old-fashioned way... with consistency in diet AND exercise AND it seems to me a reduced stress load was certainly helping things.

Oh, that I would be able to discipline myself once again. The first time around there were times I never believed I would reach my goal but I just kept working towards it. What a surprise to not only reach that 129 lbs but go several pounds beyond it!

However, I realize I haven't been making much progress going it alone. I've been trying for months, and went from 4 lbs to 8 lbs needing to come off. So, here I go again. I've got the tools. I've got the desire.


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ADAM2298 6/6/2012 9:40AM

    You have lots of great support. I like your use of the word of consistency. It is truly the thing that helps us reach our goals. Take small steps and be consistent in exercise and diet and those excess pounds will be gone.

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    i'm definitely here for you, G!
How are the ladies???
We were in CA, but just came to Hawaii (on the island of Kauai) and will be here til Oct.

Look, it's JUST 8 lbs... at worse, it will take you two months! I'll still be in Hawaii, motivating YOU!

It would be nice for me to lose 24 lbs while I'm here. I'm so up for that. You wanna hold me accountable???

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MARYINMAINE 6/3/2012 7:44PM

    It's so hard sticking to a program all by yourself, I'm with you on that! Hopefully SP will help you to feel more motivated! You can do it!

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DEBBY4576 6/3/2012 7:12PM

    boy do I hear ya!!! I am at the eight pounds and have been for months. good luck to us both!

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GRACEINAZ 6/3/2012 4:01PM

    Editor, Kim, thanks so much for the encouragement! It's frustrating when hardly anything fits, and everything looks really bad {tacky, even}. I went to thrift store last night for a pair of jeans to tide me over but nothing looked appealing to me.

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KIM--POSSIBLE 6/3/2012 11:06AM

    Right there with you! Stress and changes in my lifestyle (sahmom to working full time and grad school!) have my weight up 10-15 pounds! Gotta focus again, and find what works in this new lifestyle! We can do this!

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EDITOR 6/3/2012 3:25AM

    And you have the support! God bless you and rid you of the pesky 8 pounds.

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Mama's Sugar Blues

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Although I reached my goal a year and a half ago, I have gained a few pounds back. Sugar is one of the enemies. Not only does it add too many empty carbohydrates to my diet (way of eating) but after many years, I have finally realized it is the source of some of my migraines. emoticon

My daughter (a recent high school grad) knows of my struggle. And so yesterday, when I was eager to have my weekly dessert I decided to buy something ready-made. Driving past a nearby grocery, I pulled in to pick up my favorite cookies: Pepperidge Farm Milanos. The 'mint' variety was chosen since they didn't carry the 'orange'. When I entered our home, she questioned me about the contents of my bag. Alas, there are no secrets to be kept from grown children. emoticon I sheepishly pulled them out of the bag and was quickly met with, "Mom! you don't want those, you'll get a headache..." I returned her concern with, "That's only when I eat like 7 of them, I'm just going to have 2 or 3, and besides, that's also when I eat them right before bed so, so there!" She replies that I need to at least get them out of her sight so I tuck them away but then...

She leaves the room. I sneak them back out and sitting in front of the computer, I open the bag. I eat one, then two, one more makes three, oh what the heck four is an even number, well, good grief, five would be an equal third of the bag and how it is divided. However, I don't stop there, I grab one more and then simultaneously feeling remorse as she walks through the room, I put them away. Damage done. emoticon

Morning comes quick and I race to ready myself for work. By the time I arrive, retribution sets in. I don't feel so good: dizzy, nauseous and horror of horrors, full penance now due as a migraine sets in. Just who is the real enemy here: sugar or self? emoticon I send a text:

MAMA: I have a migraine. (sigh) I hate Milanos.
DAUGHTER: I told you so. :-(

Many uncomfortable hours and several Ibuprofen later, I am fortunate to have the headache gone. I make homemade carrot juice, a large spring salad, a homemade burger (from grass-fed beef) on wheat bread. Oh! aren't I so virtuous? emoticon

I think, yes, that's it, I think I deserve a treat! So off to the kitchen I go... I look in the cabinet, the back of the counter top, another cabinet, ALL the cabinets, in my bags, in the frig, the cabinets again... emoticon Where? where are my Milanos? Aha! SHE has done this to me, indeed I smell a rat... but the rat has taken a daylong road trip, thus another texting session ensues...

MAMA: Can't find my cookies.
DAUGHTER: You are welcome. ;-)
MAMA: LOL (stomp, stomp) LOL (pout) (stomp, stomp, pout) Argh! I hate this but I love you... OK, where are they? Argh! (sigh) Never mind, I surrender. :-(
DAUGHTER: Hahahaha, funniest text I've ever gotten from you! I love you, too. I will give them back to you tomorrow, but only two. :-) I love you!
MAMA: LOLOL I CAN'T WAIT FOR TOMORROW! Thank you for love in action. :-)
DAUGHTER: You can wait! You'll be thankful that you did. :-)

15 min later... (feeling virtuous again, hmm, how about an innocent bowl of cereal with just a little spoon of...)

MAMA: Um, I can't find the sugar... I can't FIND the sugar... is this, is this part of your master plan?
DAUGHTER: Yes. :-) I got you good!

She got me alright. She's got my number but good.

emoticonSugar and spice and everything nice
That's what little girls are made of. emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:


    Good for you! I'm glad she helped you like that.
Gracey, why don't you quit sugar all together. I did and I"m happy. Just get stuff sweetened with honey or agave!!!! Get the stuff out of your house forever! I don't want you to suffer like that ever again. Another thing that gives migraines for me is MSG. And it has so many names and a lot of time it appears as a sweetener. YUCK! So please be careful! NO more SUGAR!!!!

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GRACEINAZ 9/21/2011 12:45PM

    Thank you, Editor! LOL @ sugar denoms. My sugar cop daughter can sometimes be corrupt... and we do much jesting, lol, that's when her "spice" shows.

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EDITOR 9/21/2011 4:18AM

    Was this ever cute! I get the sugar demons when I think one won't hurt. And then I have to eat whatever offender I bring in the house until it is gone. Bless your sugar cop daughter!

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GRACEINAZ 9/21/2011 1:23AM

    Thank you for reading, so glad you enjoyed it!

LOL, yes, indeed, children are great and worth every minute I invested in them.

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ADAM2298 9/20/2011 9:49AM

    Love the blog. And aren't children great?

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I reached my goal!

Thursday, January 14, 2010

It took me 4 years but I finally reached my goal! I first joined Sparkpeople in Jan '06 at 164 lbs. I had just lost 14 lbs having reached my all-time high weight of 178 just a few months before in Nov '05. Twice I got down to just below 150 but starting this past summer, I broke a 2 yr plateau.

And now it's off -- woohoo! There were times I almost gave in or that I considered letting go of my goal. Thank goodness, I didn't. Never give up.


Never, ever give up.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SLAYINGDRAGONS 3/28/2010 10:43AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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HISRAINE 1/20/2010 4:23PM

    Way to go, especially with all you have dealt with in the last several years... Congratulations!

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IMALBY 1/15/2010 5:27PM

    Congratulations! YOu look great!

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WALKINGANNIE 1/14/2010 5:46PM

    Brilliant! Well done you - especially for sticking in there when the going got tough.

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WALKINGANNIE 1/14/2010 5:46PM

    Brilliant! Well done you - especially for sticking in there when the going got tough.

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VEGANNEWBIE 1/14/2010 5:03PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

I am very proud of you! Kudos for never giving up. Enjoy your victory!

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NOVAHARRIS1 1/14/2010 4:44PM

    Your an inspiration!! Well done x

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MSSNOWY 1/14/2010 4:24PM

    Fabulous! Congratulations!

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QUILTINGQUE 1/14/2010 4:23PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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CECINOAKLAND 1/14/2010 4:18PM

    awesome, congrats!

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MSUNEK 1/14/2010 4:16PM


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ETORRES88 1/14/2010 4:15PM


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Working on the last 10...

Wednesday, October 07, 2009

I started my weight loss journey over 4 years ago with 49 pounds to lose in order to reach my ideal goal. This past year, I've told myself (and others) that I would be quite content if I only lost 38 of those pounds but I seemed to hit a groove and go just beyond that. Anyway, I am in the last 10 pound range and have been moving along quite well until... until this weekend (it had many food indiscretions but I'm recovering from that now and experienced a loss this past week).

What happened, I don't know but I did some serious overeating over the weekend. And all of it was food devoid of good nutrition. Emotional? Possibly. In which case, I still have some more things to overcome besides weight. Overeating and making poor choices is only a symptom. I think perhaps the real problem is depending on things (food) and people (relationships) to make me happy. Of course, I am in the biggest transition of my life with absolutely no security now or in the foreseeable future. That is a scary and terrifying thing for me. It makes it tempting to want to depend on another person, if for nothing else, to at least feel good about myself. But we all know how unhealthy that is so I must stop. Stop it now. Nip it in the bud. So, while I work on this last 10, I have some new goals I will be making and they have to do in finding satisfaction and happiness with myself and the pursuits that interest me.

So that's it for now, no specifics about my dietary intake lately although I finally succumbed to a low, or rather, very moderate carb intake. I've also given in to protein shakes (perhaps 4-5 times a week), another strategy I did not want to take but sort of fell into (with a generous supply of free samples to start with) and I am not displeased with the results. And you know what else? With all of the stress I have been under, it has been a wonderful way to keep up my strength. Also, a couple teaspoons of raw apple cider vinegar before lunch each day has become a staple.

There have been many times that I wondered if I'd ever even get this close to my goal. I'm not sure I always believed but I did always strive, even after the two year weight plateau which had me barely halfway to my goal. You know what they say, "Don't give up." Don't e-v-e-r give up. 8.8 lbs to go!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:


    You are rockin´ baby! emoticon

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