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Humbled = Attitude Adjustment

Tuesday, February 07, 2012

I've been having a bad attitude for a while now about looming stress at work. My friend and coworker Yvonne is going on two vacations - one this Friday to Mexico to photograph monarch butterflies and next month to Canada to photograph the harp seals. Of course I am happy for her, but I am not at all happy about covering her desk. Past experience shows that she will be at least nominally grateful, her boss will merely grunt at me and they will expect that I will somehow be able to do her desk all day and still do my job! On top of that, I am training and mentoring a brand new student employee and trying to support 7 attorneys. I have no back-up when I go on vacation. So I have been full of self-righteous resentment and have not been happy about that. My internal efforts to adjust my attitude have not been successful.

Then last night, I clicked on an email link and read a really inspiring story. This week was the anniversary of the sinking of the USAT Dorchester by a German sub in 1943. A lot of men died that morning, but it could have been worse. Four chaplains were on board and they gave away their gloves and life jackets, spoke words of encouragement and faith to the men as they helped them get on lifeboats. As the ship sank, the chaplains stood arm in arm on the deck and prayed.

If they could do that, I thought, I can certainly handle what's on my plate! I once gave a Toastmaster speech about being surrounded by heroes. My elder brother gave his life at age 14 when he saved another boy's life, my younger brother has put his life on the line more times than he will tell me wearing the uniform of the US Navy, my father served in the army during the cold war, both grandmothers were nurses during WWII - the list goes on.

Reading the story of those four chaplains made me cry. I can only hope that. if ever presented with the opportunity to give of myself to someone else, that I would follow through.

Today's training session for the new process on Yvonne's desk went much better than I anticipated. I sang the Prayer of St Francis on the way to work and my resentment was gone. At the end of the day, I had an amazingly smooth commute home - I did not expect that given that I had stayed late. I am at peace and grateful for the attitude adjustment. I needed that!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ROX2013 2/10/2012 6:40PM

    Thanks for sharing such a inspiring story and I am so glad your day was better than you thought it would be. Makes me remember to count my blessings instead of the disappointments.
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CMRAND54 2/9/2012 5:26PM

    I'm so happy for you. I woke up happy the other day, and had a really good day. I finally realized that the day was good because I was happy, rather than the other way around. A good attitude makes every go smoother. Other people respond to your happiness in a positive way, and things get better and better. Hang in there. Do as much as you can in a cheerful manner, and praise yourself, even if your coworkers don't seem to notice.

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NEWMAC2011 2/9/2012 12:14AM

    So glad that your day was better than expected.

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CATLADY52 2/8/2012 3:40PM

    Every so often we can read or see something that reminds us that what we see as obstacles are nothing more than ripples in the pond. emoticon I hope tomorrow will be better than today.

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LIBBYFITZ 2/8/2012 9:33AM

    emoticonI still think it is a bit unfair with what you are expected to do at work.

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_LINDA 2/8/2012 12:58AM

    That is very, very generous and noble of you. I don't think I would be handling it that well. I simply wouldn't think its fair and that I was be used and not appreciated. That begs the question, why wouldn't Yvonne cover for you if you must cover for her?? That is a very heavy workload they are expecting you to carry..
I hope your peaceful state of mind continues..
Very well done!!
emoticon emoticon emoticon

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BAMBI31311 2/7/2012 11:55PM

  So glad you found your peace. Resentment only hurts the person feeling it, your co-worker won't feel it, glad you have let it go. Best of luck.

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A Hug that May Save My Life

Thursday, February 02, 2012

I have pretty much floundered for the past year for a variety of reasons and a collection of excuses. A few months ago, I joined the at work WW program, more to be the last person they needed in order to go than because I thought I would benefit. It was, for me, a colossal disaster both in terms of tonnage not lost and the emotion spiral that went with that.

They are trying to get the next session going, so I went to support the team. Most of the people at work are at goal or very close. I am the biggest by far. I am still morbidly obese. I have not committed to the session and it looks as if it is not going to go. They need 20 and they are not close to getting that many (people at goal do not pay so they don't count towards the body count.)

As we left the meeting, one of my friends pulled me aside and asked me how I am doing. She is at goal and has been for a while. She knows I have been struggling (it's obvious because my size has not changed much). In the course of the conversation, I said that I am not sure I can succeed but I know I need to because my life depends on it.

Long story short, she gave me a hug and said that she will walk with me every day if that is what it will take. I asked if she was sure and she said she is because we are friends. What I said about my life being at stake really caught her attention. It is not melodrama, it is the truth.

She gave me a hug and we are going to walk tomorrow. Her name is Linda, just like one of my SparkFamily members!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

STAROFD00M 2/6/2012 3:34PM

    You CAN do this!!! Just focus on 1-2 small goals a week and work your way slowly to where you want to be. And what an amazing friend! I've heard some wonderful things about WW as well, it sounds like you have some great support. And of course, your sparkpeople fam will always be behind you 150,000%
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WOWPLAYER 2/5/2012 8:59PM

    Glad you found someone to walk with you!! It makes a huge difference. (I miss my neighbor she moved away we used to walk together and I did a whole lot better then) Keep going at your goals, I started doing less than 1000 steps a day, and now I'm working on 10,000 steps a day....and it has taken about a year...I have had mixed results with sparkpeople, I get bored with adding in stuff LOL probably like every one, but even when I quit, I come back so even if you get sidetracked come back! I haven't lost the weight I wanted to but I am going to start measuring...I think my portions are larger than I think and I am totally adicted to sugar so I think I sabotage the weight. I am switching to a smaller plate they say that helps! Good Luck! emoticon

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ROX2013 2/5/2012 3:43PM

    Sounds like you got yourself a true friend and walking partner. I know you can do it!

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CMRAND54 2/3/2012 7:14PM

    What a good friend. Accept her offer to walk with you and you will be helped in so many ways.

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DBCLARINET 2/3/2012 7:00PM

    Thanks for the comment on my blog!

That sounds like a true-blue friend. And you're right, your NOT being melodramatic. Your life does depend on it. Glad you found someone who understands!

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BYEFATNANNY 2/3/2012 12:34PM

    She sounds like a gem. Great to hear there are such fine people out there and you get to work with her and have her as a friend. She sounds like just the help you need. Enjoy your walks

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LIBBYFITZ 2/3/2012 7:02AM

    So glad you got a REAL hug! They are the best. That is fantastic to have a walking buddy! emoticon emoticon

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_LINDA 2/3/2012 12:01AM

    That is fabulous! I am so glad you are finally getting some real life support that you so very much need. Kudos to Linda! Enjoy your new exercise buddy! I am SO HAPPY for you!!!
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MISSY455 2/2/2012 11:35PM

    So glad that your friend is going to walk with you. It has made a big difference for me since my friend and I started walking together. I feel so much more accountable to getting out there, no matter what I feel like because I know she got out of bed at 6 AM to walk with me. I hope that this gets you started in the right direction.

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41 years and 2 years

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Today is my older brother's birthday. It is his 41st birthday in heaven. He died saving another boy's life. In death, the world saw he was a hero, but he was and is my hero in life. I thought about eating out for dinner, but traffic was too much, so I just came home. I thought about buying some sweets for dessert and walked to the corner store, but did not like anything I saw there. If only I'd stopped there, this would be a celebratory blog. I smashed a banana with chocolate flavored almond butter and spread it on some cinnamon graham crackers. In the background was an emotional story on that show called "Freaky Eaters", I had never seen the show before, but was doing dishes when it came on and did not change the channel when a story similar to mine came on. I cannot blame it on the emotional triggers. I should have changed the channel.

A few days ago was my 2 year anniversary on SparkPeople. I meant to blog, thought about it a few days before, but did not remember the day of. Perhaps it's because I am not pleased with how this journey has gone over the past year. I am not anywhere near my goal weight, not anywhere near making the full lifestyle change I thought would be part of my life by now.

I honestly am not sure I can succeed. That scares me because I know my life and the quality of it is at stake.

This is not fishing for encouragement or compliments or whatever. It is where I am today. I do not even dare fully express my thoughts.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CMRAND54 2/2/2012 7:56AM

    Remembering your brother must be a sad time for you. You can be strong. You can get where you want to go. You're still here trying. emoticon

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ROX2013 2/1/2012 10:33PM

    It is hard to see progress when we are looking and expecting perfection. Sometimes you need to sit down and list all theright things you have accomplished and know there are many. I find myself chalking up the not dones instead of the great things we all accomplish each day. So, I go back read some of my old blogs and then realize how much I accomplished. I still have to loss the weight and get back into a exercise routine but I can truly say that I am no longer afraid to start again! I know I can do it! And so can you! emoticon

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    So sorry for your loss. I have also lost a brother. 6 years ago. I still feel the pain like it was yesterday. You can do this. Emotionally and physically. You can do this. I'm not gonna sugar coat it for you. You do what you have to do to survive. Pick yourself up, dust yourself off and start all over again.

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WONDEROONA 2/1/2012 8:21AM

    I'm so sorry about the loss of your brother. It must be tough. You know how tough it has been for me with the death of my mother. I gained back everything that I had lost!! We can do this together. One day at a time, one step at a time. C'mon.....we can do this!!

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LIBBYFITZ 2/1/2012 6:57AM

    To have lost a brother in such tragic circumstances is sad. I feel for your loss and heart ache. Think aobut what would he would want you to be doing at this stage in your life?

One day at a time. It is my 2 year Sparkerversary in 2 weeks time and after losing 5 kgs in the first 6 months NOTHING else has come off! I still weigh the same, but I keep plugging along as I don't like the alternative, emoticon

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BYEFATNANNY 2/1/2012 1:43AM

    No shame in being emotional today and yes emotional eating is a problem we all have...as long as you don't resort to excuses like "bad traffic" or simple stuff, hang in there, tomorrow is another day.

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MISSY455 2/1/2012 1:15AM

    You are still here, and you are still plugging along. I, like you, haven't made the progress I thought I would this year for many different reasons. As long as we are here, I have to believe, we are trying to get to our goals. As Linda said, just focus on one thing at a time, you can do this. You are worth the effort!

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_LINDA 1/31/2012 11:48PM

    So sorry for the sorrow the remembering of this tragic day brings you.
Happy belated emoticon
One thing. Its never too late to start over. Small steps, from the beginning. LOTS of people come crawling back to Sparks after having regained the weight they lost. But you have dared to remain, failure to advance for all to see. That takes some form of guts. Not to go slinking away in misery. So that can only mean there is a Spark within you, waiting to be reignited again. You DO have some wish to make this a permanent change or else you wouldn't be here. Think about it and think about one thing you need to urgently get under control. No more than one thing. Focus all your being on it. Put it on your calender as a daily must. Until you do this one thing, your day is not done. Doesn't matter what it is. Water drinking, 10 fitness minutes, tracking or measuring all your food. Just pick something you know will help and what will make you feel better. You can do this. Your Spark friends will be here as always to cheer you on..
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Head's Up on New SP Feature (Sharing Blogs)

Sunday, January 15, 2012

The leader of one of my teams emailed me the following:
Some of you may not be aware of a new SP feature recently added before members were advised.

There now is a new share bar added to our blogs that allows other members who "like" them to share them on their Facebook wall. Is this something you want? Many of us discuss personal thoughts, feelings and weight loss information in our blogs on SP that we'd just as soon not share with the Facebook and Twitter world. This new feature is a default setting on our SparkPages, however, it can be turned off.

If you'd like to turn this new feature off,

Go to your SparkPage.
Click on Edit My SparkPage.
Uncheck the "Show share bar on my blog posts" option on the upper right of the page.
Save your changes.

While nothing that we share on the internet is really private (for that reason alone we should be cautious as to what we do say in our blogs) and many of you may not be concerned about this new default setting on SP, this was new info to me and I wanted to pass it on as I only learned about it from a member on another team.

I have a Facebbok account, but I do not share anything about SP on it. I am leery of Facebook's respect for privacy, so I am very careful about how I use it. I DO enjoy being in touch with distant family and friends, but do what I can to minimize chances for anyone attempting to do nefarious things with my information.

This is, of course, a personal decision. Other people may have a different comfort level.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

POORGIRL_DIET 1/17/2012 9:44PM

    For some reason I don't have that button but I know I write allot of personal things on here and I am now a bit panicky as just in case other friends and family members read it on facebook. I am now raging that Sparkpeople have added that to their feature, its just stupid and an evasion of privacy. Thanks for the heads up though

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ROX2013 1/16/2012 11:53PM

    Thanks, I am having to learn my way around again. I do not post to Facebook very much, too many people who may have access. I prefer my thoughts and info I share here on sparkpeople to stay here. If it is something I think I want on Facebook I will put it out there.

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BYEFATNANNY 1/15/2012 7:53PM

    I have made my Sparkpage private, so not anyone on the internet can read my blogs or see my sparkpage. My old Sparkname was Hemi87 and every "car guy" looking up Hemi car engines could see my pics and read about my weight loss journey....kinda creepy. I don't like people sharing my blogs, albeit few and far between. Thank you for letting us know.

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_LINDA 1/15/2012 5:48PM

    I was furious when I saw that button, and was happy when my Spark friends were quick to publish a fix for it. I think it is too much that every site you go on has connections to Twitter, FB, you name it. I like Spark people just as it is and think it is a far better site standing on its own. Thanks for taking the link off your page. Quite a few people have not so far. It actually blocked some words in a person's blog and that was just annoying!!
Hope your Sunday is going well!

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CATHEMARIE 1/15/2012 5:38PM


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GIANTPANDA 1/15/2012 5:34PM

    I just became aware of that feature today and opted out of it. Like you, I also keep my Facebook and SP pages separate. It did surprise me that I hadn't heard about this feature earlier. Not so long ago, I discovered that some of my blogs were on the Internet, just out there. For that reason, I decided to make my SP page private.

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LISA_B68 1/15/2012 5:18PM

    Thanks for the heads up.

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Too fat for Special K!

Friday, January 13, 2012

Some of you may have seen that commercial about Special K "lose 6 pounds in 2 weeks". I got an email about it, so, just because I am a curious person, I clicked through to their website, entered my stats and got a message "Sorry, you need to see your doctor. We are unable to help you at this time." Wow!

I was about to say something like "isn't it great that I have already made progress on my journey via SparkPeople because otherwise I would have such a sense of failure." But I can't say that because, as I typed that paragraph, I realized I was eating MORE CARBS!

I am obviously not in a good mental/emotional state! Yikes! I'd laugh except I'd probably start crying!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CMRAND54 1/24/2012 8:09PM

    You're better off without Special K anyhow. What a joke. I look for cereal that has more grams of fiber than grams of sugar. And I have to get gluten free cereal. My favorite cold cereal has flax in it, is gluten free, and has lots of fiber. My favorite hot cereal is gluten free oatmeal - not the instant variety.

You are such a wonderful person. Don't let a advertising web site get you down.

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ROX2013 1/17/2012 12:06AM

    Remember when we first"meant", we always reminded each other that slow and steady wins the race. And remember that it is two steps forward one step back. You are a great,smart and caring person who is by no means a failure! I am right there beside you so lean on me whenever you need to.

I also checked out the Special K idea, what I found out was that it has very very little fiber content!

I have so many other cereals that do boost my fiber intake that I decided I wasn't missing anything by skipping the Special K (and the Chex cereals for the same reason.


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LIBBYFITZ 1/14/2012 10:22PM

    emoticonYou are a wonderful caring person, that was not a nice response!

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SLOLOSER 1/14/2012 1:44PM

    I'm not impressed with the Special K plan anyway. A bowl of cereal and a piece of fruit for both breakfast and lunch?

It's a short term fix for someone who wants to lose 6 pounds fast. It's not a healthy diet.

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1_AMAZING_WOMAN 1/14/2012 8:16AM

    Lose 6 pounds in 2 weeks with Special K?! I guess if you ate (a) portion of the stuff at every meal, and ate nothing else - maybe.


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MRE1956 1/14/2012 6:54AM

    Wow! Makes ya almost want to think about "fudging" those stats should you try that again, eh?

Bur seriously, though.....

Not knowing you or your personal health situation, you may *or may NOT* need to seek help - for all I know, you may very well be in touch with good health care folks regularly - but all that having been said.....

That message is very rude, condescending, and even worse, VERY COLD IN TONE! I tell ya, if I did eat SK regularly, I'd throw the stuff out and ban it from the house! Sheesh!

Hang in there!

emoticon - with or without that damned SK!

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    How rude of them! We have faith in you emoticon

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_LINDA 1/14/2012 1:37AM

    I don't watch TV, so never saw this ad. That is hard to believe that it would have a message like that. Anyone can start to live a healthy lifestyle at any time and start to lose weight. Although Sparks doesn't recommend losing that much in a week. They obvioulsy don't know what they are talking about.
You are not a failure. You are here. You are NOT giving up! I am right there with you, loading up on bad carbs (salty chips and popcorn are my weakness at the moment) But it can be turned around. When my stash is gone its not coming back. No more temptations.
Lets heal our mind and body together. We CAN come back from the abyss. Its never too late to start again.
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