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    POOKASLUAGH   117,392
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Cruise to Cruise

Monday, April 22, 2013

In four days, Jason and I will be on our way to Puerto Rico for the start of our cruise! It's been thirteen months since last year's cruise, and honestly, while I know I've lost some weight and inches since then, it's been so slow-going that it's hard to really see sometimes. Then this weekend, I came across a picture from last year's cruise, and it struck me that my forearm was much bigger in that picture than it is now.

Now, I don't measure my forearm at all, so I have no idea really if I've lost inches there, but it SEEMS bigger in this picture, and so I decided to take a look at the difference in my measurements over the last 13 months. The comparison really surprised me.

Weight: -28 lbs
Pants Size: -2 sizes (16 to 12)
Inches: -17 inches total, from my neck (-0.75), upper arm (-1.25), bust (-3.5), waist (-3.75), abdomen (-3), hips (-3), thigh (-1), and calf (-0.75).

So it's not a HUGE amount, compared to what other people lose in 13 months, but I'm pretty pleased over all with those numbers. Especially as these last few inches in all those places seem to have made a huge difference in the way my clothes fit. Take, for instance, the formal gown I got for my 2012 cruise, a size 16 that fit perfectly as I'd just crossed the line from obese to overweight. This year, I tried it on, and with some alterations (yay for husbands who can sew!), we made it into a size 12 dress that fits me now that I've crossed from overweight to a healthy BMI. Here is last year versus this year, side by side:

I love that we shortened the straps by almost two inches, and yet the dress is actually longer on me!

Then there's the sundress I wore one of the cruise days last year. I thought this one would still fit, and planned to wear it, but when I tried it on this weekend, it was practically falling off me. In this particular brand, I currently fit a size medium, and this dress is an extra-large. So, um, no. Unfortunately, there's no altering this one:

From these pictures, it just seems like I've lost more inches than I named above, but I haven't. I mean seriously? Less than an inch from my calves and yet they look that much smaller?? Crazy. My body must have changed shape or something...

Anyway, we had to go out last minute and replace this dress with another one (or, I admit, it was just fun to do this instead of making due with something else already in my closet, haha!). I found a great dress that can be either formal or casual, and it came with a BRIGHT YELLOW JACKET, which, if you know me, you know is a very usual choice given that I rarely wear yellow OR bright colors. was fun! And I figured what the heck? So here's that dress (though the only picture I got actually wearing the jacket, I was moving, so sorry about that...)

I am trying to see the positive here; trying to acknowledge that even though the last year has been rough, my body HAS changed. I want to thank everyone who commented on my last blog, about body image, which is something I'm still struggling with. Since I wrote it, I've thought a lot and realized that most of my issues come down to my battle with my stomach. It's the last place I lose weight/size, so that it bulges and looks horrible when I'm sitting down, plus it got all stretched/destroyed/folded over by pregnancies. It drives me crazy, because before pregnancy, my stomach was my very favorite part of my body. I loved my abs. Grr. I know that they will never be what they once were, and so I'm trying to focus on more positive things: good legs, fun hair, muscular shoulders, straight white teeth (despite never whitening them or wearing braces), no loose skin because I lost weight so slowly, etc. I know this will take some time - my brain automatically focuses on my belly, zones into it in every photo - but I'm trying very hard to retrain my thoughts.

And on that note, I wanted to share a picture Jason took of me in that same formal dress above. He asked me to strike this pose, and I was literally rolling my eyes here because I thought it was going to look stupid. Then I ended up really liking it.

I look...far better than I ever would have expected. Once the filter was on the photo - making it look like I'm wearing make-up, which I never wear - I love it even more. I don't look like myself at all. It almost looks like a modeling photo. This is the kind of thing I'm trying to embrace: seeing myself with new eyes, and hoping to accept myself better that way. Baby steps, right?

I'm not sure if I'll have time to blog again before we leave in the wee hours of Friday morning, so I'll go ahead and say bon voyage now! Thank you again, to all of you who have been so supportive. :)

Member Comments About This Blog Post:
NANNBIRD 5/22/2013 11:33PM

    Hope you had a great cruise!

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TINAJANE76 5/7/2013 8:18PM

    Um, hello? The difference between this year and last year's photos is HUGE! You've totally rounded a corner and I think that maybe your brain hasn't quite caught up to your new body. I know that it's hard not to be self-critical of all of our perceived flaws, but honestly, you look great! Not only are you so much smaller, but you've also turned back the clock and look years younger--I'd dare say like some of your old high school photos.

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AMBER281 4/30/2013 5:48PM

    You look great!
Have fun on the cruise.

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VEGSARA 4/28/2013 10:51PM

    You look great! Hve fun on the cruise!

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BACK2PHAT 4/26/2013 5:07PM

    You look great Amanda, have a super great time on your cruise :)

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RYDERB 4/24/2013 2:24PM

    Amanda, thank you so much for posting this blog! The changes in your body are AMAZING! It helps reinforce that our scales don't know everything and even our tape measures don't see the whole picture. You are so beautiful and strong. You've rocked your journey with determination. You've never been afraid to experiment and to push yourself past YOUR limits. You've blazed your own path, and you've shown the rest of us that we can do it too!
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C8TSON 4/23/2013 2:20PM

  I think you look fabulous! I can see definite changes from last year to this year. I'm glad you are going with the bright yellow! It's good to step out of the comfort zone and I think it looks great on you. As for the body image, you will get there. And, I think your stomach will get back in shape even if it doesn't look exactly the way it did before your pregnancies. I have to say, my stomach was always my biggest enemy to the way I saw myself. One week after I was married, a guy at the fast food restaurant I was eating at loudly stated to me, "Congratulations!" I was perplexed at how he knew I was a newlywed. Then I realized he thought I was pregnant because of my bulging belly. emoticon It was crushing, and I have been fighting for a long time to get rid of it. I know it's hard to embrace your body when you see imperfections, but I think you are on the right track. You look wonderful! emoticon

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KAMINEKO 4/23/2013 1:55PM

    The increased definition in your neck, arms, shoulders areas is striking when comparing this year's pics to last year's!

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CHANGINGSAM 4/23/2013 12:08PM

    I'm so so proud of you! You look fantastic!

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MOMMASHUTT 4/23/2013 8:06AM

    You look fabulous!!! I hope you feel better soon and aren't too drug hazy.

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NANNABLACK 4/23/2013 7:37AM


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LOTUSFLOWER 4/22/2013 11:47PM

    The pictures tell it all, you look amazing!!!!

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KARENLEIGH32 4/22/2013 8:48PM

    Say what you want Pookie, but I can def. see the changes in your pictures! They are looking like a lot more than the inches you claim to have lost, take it & run with it! If you're not careful people will start calling you 'Skinny' instead of Pookie!

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TANYA602 4/22/2013 8:34PM

    Oh hon, you are amazing! I also love the last pic and the pose. Absolutely stunning, and what great attitude I get from you. I can't believe the time for your cruise is already here, and what a wardrobe! I had to laugh - and am slightly envious - that you mention DH sews! How very cool.
I hope you have a marvelous time, and take lots of pictures. WOW!

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MISTY_MOUNTAINS 4/22/2013 7:05PM

    Those inches made a big difference!! You should be very proud. emoticon

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HOLLYS_NEW_LIFE 4/22/2013 6:53PM

    You look AMAZING!!! You looked great before, but you totally see a big difference on all of those photos. Have an awesome time, you SOOO deserve it!

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ROBYNROSE26 4/22/2013 2:48PM

    Looks great!

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MSBOOKDRAGON 4/22/2013 2:38PM

    have a great time! You look fantastic

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    Great photos and accompanying narrative - thanks for sharing this. You have made amazing strides - don't downplay your "little" numbers - they've made a big difference!

Have a wonderful time on the cruise .... hope you can relax and just enjoy!

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THINNYGINNY 4/22/2013 11:58AM

    Those inches sure made a difference - and now that I am in the slow-loss part of my weight loss, I understand that it can be discouraging. I keep telling myself tht IT ALL COUNTS... And oh my goodness - isn't it great to NOT BE OBESE and self concious all the time. You look slim and healthy and happy and you will have fun on your cruise. Perfection (when it comes to body shape/size) is unreachable. But healthy, happy, fun - you got that. I want to go ziplining!!!

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PROGRESSINWORK 4/22/2013 10:29AM

    Have fun on your cruise, and OMG! The comparison between 13 months ago and now is just awesome! Even if it's only been a "small" loss (no such thing in my humble opinion). The loss might be hard for you to see because it was slow and you see yourself every day, but there's no arguing with pictures!

Your legs, shoulders, and collar bone are ah-mazing! We all have our trouble spots, and you're right that we should focus more on the parts we love.

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KAREBEARCARES 4/22/2013 10:18AM

    you are looking amazing! :-D

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MJ-SHE-BEAST 4/22/2013 10:12AM

    The difference are so obvious, so visible. Even with the dress altered, it still looks bigger on you than in the picture from last year. THIS is progress, results, and proof! Have a wonderful cruise!

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LITTLETEALOVER 4/22/2013 10:11AM

  Wow. The difference between last year and this year is very apparent to me. You look fantastic. And, I LOVE the yellow jacket!

I totally get what you mean about focusing on your stomach in every picture. I do the same thing. My stomach has always been my least favorite spot. I am the absolute definition of an apple shape. All my weight settles in my stomach and even when I was thin, I had very little definition in my waist. It doesn't help, either, that I have small hips and no butt to speak of.

Anyway, have a wonderful time on your cruise!

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    I can TELL the difference a year makes on you! You look much smaller now- noticeably so! Way to go on the progress! Sometimes when we scoff at a small weight-loss/month or week, we just have to add up the losses across the long-term to see the results!

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VAPIDWENCH 4/22/2013 8:51AM

    Great job - and wow, you can certainly see a massive difference in the photos! Well done you. Have a wonderful cruise! emoticon

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WALLINMW 4/22/2013 8:49AM

  If I can, YOU can!

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