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Weight Loss and Weddings

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

I haven't blogged a lot. I've explained before that I was in a year-long health slump, due to some legitimate distractions (and some that were not so legitimate). All the weight I previously lost has piled back on and I don't feel good about my health. Notice I said, "I don't feel good about my HEALTH", not "I don't feel good about MYSELF." That's a pretty important distinction.

I am a happy woman. I have children who love me and they know I love them. I have a man who still gives me butterflies and makes me blush when he looks at me in that particularly tender way. I am getting ready to stand in my best friend, Joe's, wedding in May and it will be the first gay marriage I have the privilege of being involved with. I have BONUS children that are sweet, affectionate, good little boys. I have a job that pays pretty well and, for the first time in my life, I have a man who also has a job that pays pretty well and we are helping each other get through the difficult work of everyday bills and responsibilities. I have a church that has given me the freedom to truly understand what I believe and why and who does so much in the community, I want to cry. Not only that, but they encourage their members to THINK about everything, to explore, to learn about ALL cultures and denominations and religions and to really figure out how faith fits into our lives and how we are to be involved in social justice in a way that honors God and edifies that which is authentic in our own spirits. I have no complaints about my life at all.

Here I am now, ready to hop back on the Spark train (even as I've said those words so many times before and not followed through). But this time I have some advantages that I didn't have the last time around...mainly, life experience in how to navigate the rockiest and most emotional of days. I figure, if I can make it through something as awful as a divorce, I am strong enough to make it through damn near anything.

In addition, I have this little carrot at the end of the stick - Joe's wedding. Last week, Joe texted me and asked me to send my measurements so he could order this dress for me:

I promptly went to the seamstress and asked her to take my measurements and I was shocked at how they had grown since I last recorded them in SparkPeople a year ago. It made me sad and slightly embarrassed to send the numbers to Joe, knowing that the other two bridesmaids would have much smaller numbers to contend with.

The second carrot at the end of the stick is MY OWN wedding, which is not until December 27th, thank God!

On the same day as the horrifying measurements debacle, my Mom and sister and niece came into town to join me and my two daughters at the Bloomington Bridal Expo. We had such a lovely day together - sampling foods and cakes and looking at flowers and string quartets and stationary. Since my mom had driven an hour to be with me that day, and since she brought a couple members of my bridal party with her, I scheduled dress fittings for the girls and for me. We headed to David's Bridal and the girls tried stuff on first. We found the perfect dress for all of them. (They will all be that same red color). We also found an adorable dress for my flower girl.

Then came my turn to try on dresses. Let me just say...things do not look the same on the rack as you imagine they will look on your body! Especially when you are bigger than you expected to be. Satin is a NO NO for my body. It just accentuates my size. If you will notice, the dress I am wearing for Joe's wedding on May 3...yep, it's a GORGEOUS dress...but...it's satin. Zoinks!

After a few colossal failures, the attendant started bringing me things that really worked for my figure, like all-over lace. But, truth be told, I was not actually looking to wear a real wedding gown this time around. Don't get me wrong, this wedding will be beautiful and the decorations will be extravagant and the dinner will be sit-down. But it will be very small (just our parents/brothers/sisters/kids and a few friends - like 5 friends). Our wedding will total 45 people and that includes US, the wedding party and our officiant.

After some time, I found a bridesmaid dress that I just love. I think this is the one, but I will probably go for one more fitting in May before I place the order. Our wedding colors are red, black and silver. I thought this would be lovely to accent with red jewelry and hairpiece (maybe even a shrug in red since it will be winter). I would NEVER EVER have chosen this to try on off the rack but my Mom was speechless when she saw it on me. I think that's a good sign. It fits my body PERFECTLY and really is slimming. Still, I hope to order it a few sizes smaller when it's actually time to order!

As you can see, nothing about this wedding will be traditional. We are holding our ceremony at the Tibetan Mongolian Buddhist Cultural Center and our Christian minister will be presiding. The ceremony AND reception dinner will take place there. We will write our own vows to each other and to each other's children. My 5 yr old son will walk me down the aisle. And we won't have any of that normal wedding stuff like a unity candle or readings or any of that. Short and sweet and simple. Some vows, some rings and a kiss. The end. There will be a first dance for us but we won't have dancing or any of the traditional parent dances - our parents have already been around the block and done that stuff. It's going to be a lovely day. We have a wedding planner that is handling ALL the details of our ceremony and reception and once I get my tax refund in a few weeks, I will hand over all the money she needs to do so and we will have nothing to worry about except tasting things and walking down the aisle to get married in December.

Even though the whole thing is very non-traditional, one tradition remains. I am the Bride and I want to be beautiful on my day. Am I beautiful now? Oh yes. He never stops telling me. But could I FEEL better about my appearance and be more energetic and have less weight to haul around by the time I get married? Heck yeah. That is why I have joined the Melaleuca Vitality Total Health Challenge, which runs February 1st through April 30th. And, even though it starts Feb. 1, I have already started it this week. I've been doing great and paying attention to my diet and finally got back in the pool, only to find that I've still got it! I was able to do my regular 30 lengths in 30 mins with no problem at all! Even after a year of not working out! So, apparently, my body retained at least SOME of its prior fitness. Yay! I have all my workouts and strength sessions calendared and I am religiously tracking those calories again.

This time, I don't expect perfection. I realize I will screw up some days but the TOTAL of all my efforts will result in weight loss. I just know it.
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
  • JAYDEE16
    I love ALL of the dresses above, I'd like to say. But yours is the best of all - stunning!!! I hope it's okay with you if I add you as a friend . . . I followed your blogs for ages and then, well, it looks like we both fell off the Sparkwagon for awhile. But now I think it's time I friend you properly so I can see when you post a new blog. :)
    I'm so glad to see you are so happy! Congratulations on your engagement, and your clearly spectacular genetics, as your children are absolutely gorgeous just like you :).
    1500 days ago
  • GEORGE815
    Glad things are going well for you. I had not heard from you in a while.
    1504 days ago
    How wonderful that you have accepted yourself and are so happy! I am just thrilled for you. And the dress!!!!! WOWZER!!! It is beautiful, and so are you! My DH & I got married on the beach in Maui at sunset with the minister, my BFF, and the photographer. It was small but beautiful. I had a dress made - it was actually CHEAPER and more beautiful than any I found, but had I seen your dress I might have changed my mind! I know I will be telling you this again in a few short months, but I wish you a lifetime of happiness!
    1507 days ago
  • KIPPER15
    Glad to see you back. Small weddings are wonderful. You can enjoy yourself and you can really talk to all the guests. The dress is lovely!. emoticon
    1510 days ago
  • GEORGE815
    Glad you are back. Good luck with the weddings.
    1513 days ago
    We're so excited about your wedding! You'll be so lovely no matter what. You are so lovely. And we're all in this journey that often goes up and down. You've got a whole crew to help you reach your goals.
    Good luck! and Spark on!
    We're here for you.

    1513 days ago
    The dress is lovely. You're going to be a beautiful bride!
    1513 days ago
    Welcome back! Love the dresses. Best wishes!!
    1513 days ago
    Hi Leah;
    Thank you for sharing your news, the dresses you will wear are simply awesome Your gonna rock it out!! I've told you this before I think you are so beautiful & you have a lovely smile, that always warms my heart. It's so good to hear you are so happy & you age getting the wedding You want,
    Glad to hear your back in the pool and the body doesn't forget, all you need to do is allow yourself to be human, you may have a tiny slip but You've learned how to pick yourself up & start going again towards your goals.
    I'm here praying for you & cheering you on I know you'll succeed one day one bite at a time.

    Many Blessings Always Debby emoticon emoticon emoticon
    1513 days ago
    Good to hear your news update and that's a most beautiful dress you've chosen!

    Best wishes with the healthy eating and exercising - you know you can do it, you've just got to stay focused and believe in yourself.

    I look forward to seeing a photo of you in The Dress in due course!
    1514 days ago
    Sounds wonderful and a great attitude! Best Wishes! emoticon
    1514 days ago
    Your dress is beautiful. Sounds like your journey is moving forward very nicely. Isn't it wonderful to look back and actually see progress? YES - look where you have come from. You've got this Leah! Perfection is not as wonderful as we think it will be when we attain it - because we all know life has shown us that perfection is never attained.
    1514 days ago
    Very nicely said. You sound ready to go and have a beautiful destination to reach. emoticon
    1514 days ago
  • CAROLZ1967
    Glad you are back! Always loved your blogs. Dresses are beautiful too!!
    1514 days ago
    Lovely dress. Will be nice to hear how it goes on Saturday. You have a lot of great reasons to pursue your goals.
    1514 days ago
  • MOM-MOM8
    I an so happy that things are going well for you. Your dress is beautiful! Welcome back to tracking and planning. You can do it.
    1514 days ago
    I love your dresses, too. Your wisdom to begin a plan immediately is the sign of a truly diligent woman. You can do this! Hug, hug -- Evelyn
    1514 days ago
  • LINDAK25
    Oh, I love the dresses and the girls look beautiful! You can do this!
    1514 days ago
    What's funny is I ended up in a wedding dress that when I saw it on the rack I was like "No way!!!" But as soon as I put it on I knew it was the one for me!! Good luck and I am sure you will look beautiful!!
    1514 days ago
  • SHIRE33
    Glad to see you back. I'm back this week, too. What else is there to do?! As long as we're here, we're doing something right. :) Congratulations on your upcoming wedding!

    1514 days ago
    I love the dresses! I am so glad you are back. I have missed your blogs.

    We had a nontraditional wedding, also in December. Our colors were red and white. I am excited because I am almost back into my wedding dress. I am hoping to wear it on our Valentines Day date. We have been married 26 years.

    Take care of yourself. So happy for you.
    1514 days ago
    Your dress is lovely and you will look great in it. emoticon
    1514 days ago
    1514 days ago
    the Wedding dress is Beautiful!! AND I KNOW emoticon
    1514 days ago
    Very exciting!
    One day at a time... you'll do great!
    1514 days ago
    That dress for Joe's wedding is GAWGEOUS! I love love love the color!

    I also love the dress you picked out for your own wedding. I'm 100% sure you will be stunning in it!

    I almost wish someone would ask me to be a bridesmaid now so that I could go try on dresses!

    1514 days ago
  • JUNEAU2010
    Your blog is brimming full of peace! I love it! I absolutely love the bridemaid dress and the description of your wedding. Congrats way in advance! My gay sister is getting married in June and I am so happy that she has finally found someone with whom she can completely share her life. I don't know if I will be able to attend (work demands and a very thin wallet), so I am having to choose the words for my reply to her invitation very carefully.

    Congrats to your friend Joe! May he be as happy as I know my Cathy will be!
    1514 days ago
  • SANDYL54
    Oh your dress is stunning. And your ceremony and dinner sound so refreshing and relaxing. It is wonderful to be unencumbered by tradition and free to find just the right mix for you! Congrats!
    1514 days ago
    Woo hoo! Congratulations on all the upcoming excitement. Know that is within you to succeed grandly! I love how you phrased your love of self. Go girl!
    1514 days ago
    OMG! Your wedding dress is beautiful and you will look fabulous in it! emoticon emoticon emoticon

    What a wonderful day it will be but so far off, we will all be anxiously awaiting! Your plans sound perfect! I am so very happy for you!

    1514 days ago
    Welcome back aboard the Spark Train! emoticon
    1514 days ago
    One day at a time!! That's the only thing to do...

    I will be a bridesmaid for the first time this July and she sent me a picture of what she wants to get...I really want to shed at least 15 lbs and try to lose some 'girls' because the dress is a sweetheart neckline...and I have DD cup!!!

    WE CAN DO IT!!
    1514 days ago
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