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Musings from the week of the Fourth

Friday, July 05, 2013

I had so many blog ideas from this past week, that I just decided I'm going to put them all into one blog. So I apologize in advance for all the random thoughts and paragraphs and pictures!

We spent the week in San Antonio (about 4 hours from my home) just to kinda relax, get away, and take the girls to Sea World. It's not always easy to relax away from home, but thankfully I had no food-anxiety or external pressure to social-eat or indulge on unnecessary junk. So I did end up enjoying myself.

Here's from the San Antonio Riverwalk

Here's a couple from Sea World


Ok, I used to HATE, HATE, HATE going on vacation because I've always been heavy (or, at least, as a child I was considered 'heavy.' By today's standards I would be considered 'normal'). I would eat alot and stuff myself too much and end up feeling uncomfortable and not enjoying myself. So in a sense, yes it's about body image because of course a girl likes to look good. But also, it's about feeling comfortable. Even today when people ask me what the greatest thing about losing weight is, I tell the absolute honest truth... and that is COMFORT.
With that being said, I can't imagine how the majority of the people at Sea World yesterday were comfortable. The only foods available were sugary sodas and frozen lemonades, ice cream, cheap pizzas and hamburgers (cheap in quality, not in price), and smoked turkey legs. I ate about half of a smoked turkey leg. But everywhere I looked, people were stuffing their selves with all of this junk. And believe me, I haven't become judgemental or snobbish about it. I'm genuinely curious how we, as a people, live like this. Texas (especially San Antonio) is really, really, really hot. Everyone was dripping with sweat and red from a combination of sun and cellular malnutrition from binging on junk, I'm sure. I know, cause I've been there. It's not fun to carry around a 100+ pound blanket in that kind of weather. There were a lot of people rolling around in scooters because their bodies were too large to walk around all day. But what was really sad were all of the morbidly obese children.


I do not promote a culture of shame, and I don't endorse any kind of shaming or hatred. But as a concerned citizen of a country that is obviously in the midst of an epidemic, I just can't ignore what I'm seeing. It's one thing to see grown, consenting adults walking around in bikinis flaunting bodies that they have put absolutely no effort into caring for. But to see malnourished and sick children walking around in this condition... it's just scary. Also, I'd like to point out that when a person is in a severe state of morbid obesity, the malnourishment on a cellular level is just as acute and severe as a person in an extreme state of anorexia... FWIW.

People act like they're just shocked when they see a consenting adult, who is obviously healthy and conscientious, walking around like this...

But this is becoming more and more and more common with our youth (she was no older than 10)...

Anyway, I'll get off my soap box. I've never been "skinny." My BMI is currently about 21.5 so I realize I'm "thin" or "average." What's important to me is that I'm comfortable. And I honestly don't judge another person's comfort level. But as a nurse I'm aware of some of the health concerns that these children face. It's not that I don't care about the adults, it's just that they can make their own decisions and it's their business. i feel very badly for the children who are literally starving to death inside a body that is 5 times the size it should be.

Traveling and Food

This is not as difficult as it was 6 or 7 years ago. Or really even about a year ago! I've become accustomed to wanting more healthy food. And so have my family. When I do desire a treat, I am picky. This is nice.

Here is my oldest daughter chowing down on some beets at a salad bar...

Here is my youngest munching on salad...

When we ate out at restaurants I tried to pick the wise options. But I also made a lot of trips to grocery stores. Fruits and Veggies are the ULTIMATE fast food, y'all!

Here's an indulgent meal I enjoyed... authentic Mole (not from a jar) on chicken thigh. Rich and sultry! I was able to eat about a third of it! I'm not always a health nut! Mole is about 100 calories per tbsp!


My dogs were so happy to see us get home!

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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    You are truly blessed.
    1790 days ago
    I think what I appreciated most is that you not only touched on obesity, but on the opposite as well. In our pursuit of healthiness, we need to make sure that when we reach our goal weights, we don't obsess to become unhealthy in the opposite end of the spectrum. I'm already starting to think about maintenance strategies, which gets me kind of excited. Everytime I look at you, I'm just so proud of you and what you've accomplished. Such a beautiful girl you are, and such an amazing legacy you've started for your little girls.

    As for the people who wander around in darkness, not realizing what they're doing to themselves, I feel like it's kind of like the movie 'The Matrix'. It's like we don't realize it until one day we unplug ourselves from the system, and see it for what it really is, and then see all those who are still plugged in. It's a shame that we all have to unplug ourselves in our own time, but it's great that your little girls are growing up with a mother who has already unplugged herself.
    1805 days ago
  • CAMAEL100
    I remember one of the reasons I had for losing weight was so I wouldn't feel so hot and uncomfortable when it was warm! Ireland is in the midst of a heatwave which we haven't seen for years and I am glad I am not any bigger!! We are not used to heat in Ireland!!

    I think that it is not just health risks kids face, it is not actually being able to run about and have fun like children are meant to. I am always being told my girl is small but i wonder what they are comparing her to. There are 4 girls in her class. One is obese, one is overweight and two are what is considered 'skinny'. I think they are perfectly normal and spend most of their time outside running about.

    We have lots of sports camps here and i hear the parents of the obese kids saying their kids are too tired after the school year to go to the camps. Most kids love them and get in lots of exercise without even knowing it.

    I think that many of the parents are in denial about the size of their kids and how much junk they eat. I am not surprised you rant. I think we know what it was to grow up thinking we were overweight. These kids are way over weight and there is no way it is not effecting their confidence and self esteem! I hear people say the stats are wrong. When I look at kids they are totally right if not unfortunately a little conservative!!
    1806 days ago
    I loved this blog post! It's so difficult to go on vacation and battle the changing environment, whether it is the people, the weather, food, and more. I really caught an interest in the mal nourishment of overweight children starving in their bodies.

    --"The malnourishment on a cellular level is just as acute and severe as a person in an extreme state of anorexia."

    That definitely gives me something to think about...

    Best Wishes,

    1808 days ago
    Great blog--you're right, it is sad to see kids that are learning unhealthy habits and are on the track to health problems. I have become more and more concerned and aware. I see my students eating junk (candy, chips, soda) for breakfast, snack, and lunch=NO nutritional value! I am a running coach and also did a healthy eating campaign at school.

    Glad you had fun on vacation! Looks great and glad you were comfortable! Yes, losing weight does make it easier to get around--especially in the heat!

    Keep up the good work! You're a great role model for your girls and as a health care professional.

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    1809 days ago
    Excellent blog and pictures, Marie!

    Thank you for highlighting the "obesity comfort" that our society has become comfortable with. Obesity is now accepted as the "normal state" for both adults and children. Anyone who is "skinny" is quickly slapped with an "eating disorder" label of some sort.

    Your girls look so vibrant and healthy!
    1809 days ago
    I must agree with you about the state ofour children, I was comparing two yearbook, mine from 1971 and another from 2011. The change in how many "fat kids" there are is astounding! I you don't believe in shaming, but doggone it, what I am see is a shame and people should be ashamed of themselves. But all we seem to do is molly-coddle with concept of "good body image" instead of telling them that their lifestyle is unhealthy. We aren't asking these kids to be anorexic super models, just to take care to eat better and move around. My own son, who has me as an example ate an entire box of Macaroni and Cheese today ... three 360 Calorie servings, then sat on his ass in front of the idiot box all afternoon. Me? I had a black bean omelette and changed a tire, went to the dump, mowed the lawn and ran 13 miles.

    Soapbox vacated.
    1810 days ago
    I think comfort is a key thing. Although I'm nowhere near where I want my eventual weight to be, I know I am more comfortable as I get healthier.
    1810 days ago
  • ROCKMAN6797
    It is sadly more and more common to see these sights wherever you go. Thankfully it is not hopeless as evidenced by your daughters. Good for them (and you)!
    BTW, that mole looks absolutely sinful! I love it so much!
    1810 days ago
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