Thursday, June 27, 2013
So my dad used to say it when I was a kid... usually when he was trying to get me to improve my attitude. He'd say something like, "Samantha, I know you acted like a brat yesterday when you threw that temper tantrum and put cracks in the wall from slamming the door so hard, but today is first day of the rest of your life! You can go downstairs and repaint the wall and choose to be a productive member of the family! Isn't that wonderful?"
And so this was a phrase that was usually very ominous and indicated that the rest of my life should be full of harder work and a friendlier, more helpful outlook. It wasn't motivating, per se. The "rest of my life" seemed to be just as burdensome as the days before. What can I say, I wasn't the best behaved child.
But well, when I weighed myself on Tuesday morning and saw a number I hoped I'd never see again... I shouted up to Matt (who was still groggy in bed), "Hey honey, great news--TODAY is the FIRST DAY of the rest of my life!!!" The phrase has taken on a richer, more promising meaning through the years.
This time last year I was doing great. I had lost 25 pounds, I was in the high 150s, I was feeling positive. But somewhere in the drama of the past year things just turned around.
First I lost the momentum--I stopped tracking my calories, I stopped paying attention to what I was eating and the quantities I was eating it in. I started thinking of my weight loss as "on hold". Then grandma moved in with us, and I started picking at the junk food that we keep in the house for her (because she has the opposite problem--the lady won't eat and needs to put on some weight!) Then we found out that we had bedbugs, which is truly a life-changing, terrible experience that I don't wish on anyone. We packed all of our belongings (including our pots, pans, spices, food processor, baking trays, etc.) into plastic bags and started eating take-out. My pants were getting a little tighter, but it didn't seem like too big of a deal. And through all of this, I truly thought that I'd pick up again right where I left off, instead of gaining 15 lbs. back.
Then Matt and I decided that we are going to get married, and suddenly I kind of freaked out. We're going to get engaged! There are going to be so many pictures! Oh Christ, this isn't me, right? This is like, me plus 40 or so pounds. (It's amazing how long I have felt that the body that I'm living in is only a temporary phase I'm going through--heck, I don't think I've felt like my body is my "real" body since high school.)
But here I am, realizing that I don't want to spend my whole engagement focused on losing weight. We're going to get married in Spring of 2015, and I want to lose the weight and start this new phase of my life healthy.
So Tuesday morning, when I looked at the scale, I freaked out momentarily, and then started planning food for the week and getting everything in order, and I faced a hard reality: I want to eat more food than my body needs. I'm addicted to food. Tracking my food might be something I need to do my whole life to get healthy and to stay healthy. My overweight-ness might feel temporary, but carefully watching my food as a primary way of taking care of myself is probably going to have to be permanent. So I've got to start figuring out how to make it work for me as a permanent part of my life.
So--Tuesday was the first day of the rest of my life. And now, in the mid-afternoon Thursday, I've been on plan for 2.5 days.