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Sometimes It’s Better Not To Think Too Much

On Friday I wasn’t sure how I was going to make it through this weekend…

The boys weren’t going to see The Ex like they should, so no break for me…I had such an awful day on Friday, that I could have spent the whole weekend dwelling…I just wasn’t excited about the weekend…

And I learned (or reminded myself) that if I just stay busy, keep moving, and focus on the here and now, I could survive…I’m a thinker, a dweller by nature…this weekend was exhausting

My house is clean, my life is a little more organized, Aidan and I have a new understanding about his behavior, and I have worked out and eaten right all weekend…and I’ve kept my mind blissfully blank…

I don’t think I could keep it up forever, but for one weekend, it was necessary that I not think too much…

Some Days Are Better Than Others…This Wasn’t One of Them

I don’t know how I managed to keep my game face on today, but I did…I wanted to cry at 10am, and it was 10pm before I let it go…

The hits kept coming all day…typical stuff, random stuff, stuff that probably isn’t that big a deal, but felt bigger because of my mood…

I should probably discuss the details, get it out of my system…but I don’t want to…some stuff doesn’t have to live on the internet forever…and it doesn’t really matter…I believe the technical term is “same shit, different day.”

There are rare moments, today was one of them, when I wonder if I wouldn’t have been better off staying married…sometimes it just seems too hard…sometimes the number of changes and adjustments are too many and too overwhelming…my heart immediately rejects that notion, though…because I want something better than I had in my marriage…and before someone who doesn’t know offers a lecture, I worked damn hard on my marriage for years before I was strong enough to walk away…

I want something I didn’t believe in when I was married…I want the freaking fairy tale…I want the man who gets me and doesn’t run screaming…I want to have someone I trust enough to lean on…I want the man who understands I don’t lean easily but makes me…I want to be romanced…I want to be loved…I want to be brought back down to earth when I get too nuts and I want to be lifted up when I get too down…

I got sucked into an episode of Say Yes to the Dress…that didn’t help…but I know if I ever get remarried, I will get the freaking fairy tale dress, and I dare anyone to try and tell me no…

On the bright side (because there’s always a bright side), I did not emotionally eat my way through this day…

Gotta Get My Swagger Back

I am so pissed at myself…

I finally had to face a hard reality this morning…those 15 pounds I keep saying I’ve gained are real, y’all!

I have a pair of pants I’ve avoided for at least a month, maybe longer, because I know how they fit without the 15 pounds…I knew it wouldn’t be good…holy crap, it was horrible…I looked like a stuffed sausage!!

Losing weight is hard, gaining weight is easy…the will to do the hard work it takes to lose weight requires a catalyst…when I was at my heaviest, 5 years ago, at 260 pounds, it took a picture…it was probably the first picture I had allowed to be taken of me in a couple of years…and it was terrifying…I didn’t recognize myself…some fat people have multiple chins – I had one giant chin…it was disgusting…and I think it was the disgust I felt at looking at myself that motivated me…88 pounds later, I was happy and only needed to lose another 20 pounds…

Fast forward a few years…I maintained the weight, got pregnant, gained a few, lost them, and went through a turbulent, emotional year…I’m an emotional eater…I know that about myself and it’s something I have to fight…I also love food…the divorce, the adjustment to being a single mom, the craziness at work, the new life, the money problems – all of this and more drives me to fast food and too much food, even when it’s NOT fast food…15 pounds later (on top of the 20 I still wanted to lose), here we are…

I started my day very determined to do what I know what I need to do…I broadcast my intentions to anyone who would listen..right now, it’s easy because my motivation is high…but I gotta a little extra push today…

Big Brother said something to me that hit home, but still surprised me…”Michaela, you’ve got to get your swagger back…get back to who you were before when you were working out and cared more.” I was surprised because I figured it hadn’t been that noticeable…

But the reality is that it’s very clear to anyone who knows me…I started hiding in my clothes…I stopped wearing my sassy earrings that make me happy…I barely wear makeup most days…I keep my head down a lot…I notice that my shoulders are slumped more often than not…

And I’ve got to get over this crap! So today is day one…today was a good day…I even ran on the treadmill a little…that felt damn good…

It’s not just about the 15 pounds…it’s not just about looking like a sausage in my pants…it’s about getting my swagger back…

The Will To Change

Everyone probably needs to change something in their lives…I’d love to meet the person who doesn’t need to…I already know plenty who don’t think they need to change…

I can name several things that I’d like to change…my ability to procrastinate on the things I don’t want to deal with…my inability to save any amount of money, even if it’s just $1 a month (I promise that’s about all I can do some months)…my (new) inability to focus on my own health for more than about 5 minutes – it’s new because I spent 3 years losing weight with nothing more than focus, determination, and hard work…

I think I know what I need to get back on track…I need to rest and rejuvenate…I mean, actually rest…get a real break from work and kids…but I live in the real world…not everyone gets the luxury of taking time away from their lives to refocus, so I’m no different from anyone else…so what do I do?

I have to find the will to make the changes necessary to move forward in a more positive way…I need to remember that the quicker I get through the dreaded stuff, the quicker it’s over…and often no where near as bad as I fear it will be…I have to be willing to not run through drive thru and spend $5 when I don’t really have that money to spend and it’s unhealthy…but it feels like a sacrifice…

I recognize the falseness of that thinking…not having the “luxury” of spending a few dollars on crappy food sounds silly…but it’s a mindset I have fallen in to and I don’t know how to change it…I remember growing up broke and being told no, a lot…I remember getting easy credit in college, feeling like I had money, spending it, paying it all off, and then spending it again – ruined my credit for a few years…I remember being pregnant with Aidan and making about $8 an hour (with no income from The Ex)…

I’m not any different from a lot of people…money is tight for most of the world…what I can’t get over is how not spending money (that I don’t have) is a sacrifice…and then I need to find a way to figure out how to be ok with the “sacrifice” if it means that I save a few dollars or I have breathing room, financially or I eat less crap, which is killing my health…

The first step is the will to change…the next step is the first small step of change…either way, for whatever reason, I’m stuck at that first step…which makes me wonder where my focus, determination, and ability to work hard have gone…why can’t I just strong arm my way through this until I make the necessary changes?

Gotta Love Those Endorphins

I think I have a new rule for my loved ones…if we’re talking and I seem unnecessarily down, sad, mopey, or any other basketcase-like emotion, please, please ask me if I’ve worked out yet for the day…

For the second day in a row, I whined to BBFF on the phone about how stressful life is, how I feel pretty miserable, blah blah blah…and then picked myself up, changed clothes, let Jillian Michaels kick my ass (I just love her) and felt like crap for dumping all over him…the things that have been bothering me still bother me, but I’m in a better frame of mind…I’m thinking more clearly and logically…my feelings aren’t clouding my thought process…now I’m good company…

It’s gotta be the endorphins…or it’s simply that my ass really got kicked, and I can’t focus on anything but the pain…either way, it works…

Yesterday, it was money…today, it was loneliness…sometimes, even now, I am shocked at how some of the changes in my life since the divorce can affect me…I’m very used to and comfortable with being single…with the boys and I being the Three Musketeers…but I don’t really think my life is meant to be just the three of us…and maybe that’s where the loneliness comes from…

I have BFF and I have BBFF, and I have others…but because of the way life works and the physical distance between me and a lot of the people I care about, sometimes I feel very isolated…I can admit, sometimes I do it to myself…I’m a homebody (because gas costs money)…I don’t trust people (stranger-danger)…and I am unwilling to randomly call people and whine to them (except for poor BBFF)…but I can’t spend my life wallowing in misery…

The next time I wallow and whine, someone please hit me over the head with a Jillian Michaels DVD…

A Love Letter To My Treadmill

My dearest ‘mill,

I know you’re angry with me…it’s been so long since we spent time together.  I know, I know, you feel like I neglected you, that I’ve ignored you.  I promise I thought about you…I never forgot you.  I missed you everyday.

Like all relationships, the beginning was the sweetest…getting to know one another, seeing each other every day, all those great walks…it was a wonderful time in our lives.  It’s when we moved to the next level that it became harder to keep the same intensity…that’s not your fault, I know! I’m the one who insisted on running again…you tried to warn me…every time I nearly tripped and fell, I know that was your way of telling me to slow down before I hurt myself…I didn’t appreciate what you were trying to do for me…I’m so sorry…I should have listened to you.

And then, and I know this is no excuse, I got sick…that cold kicked my ass…the nagging cough that followed was horrible…I knew I couldn’t run like that.  I know, I can hear you now…of course I could have walked…but you know I have a mental block about just walking when I could be running…and the busy nights.  I felt you staring at me all those nights I was on the computer working…you felt neglected then, too, didn’t you? Oh, ‘mill, I’m so sorry…

Tonight was good, right?  Like old times?  Before the craziness of me trying to run…I’ve had to admit that my knees can’t handle it anymore…it’s my own fault…I never went to a doctor when I blew my knee out…maybe I’ll never run again…but with you, I’ll walk hundreds of miles…

I have a favor, beloved…will you help me get race-ready again?  I can’t run, but I know I can walk faster than most people…with your help, I can be a racer again…it will mean a lot of time together…I promise, I won’t just disappear on you again…if I have to take a break, I will give you an explanation first…please say you forgive me…

Love,
Michaela

**Yeah, I know, I’m a nut.**

Big, Fat, Hairy…Goals

I’m a goal person…if I don’t have a goal (no matter how small), I feel like I have no purpose…which leads to stress, chaos, and all sorts of negative things…including procrastination and loss of focus…

I complained earlier about feeling soft…I complained yesterday about stressing and emotional eating (today was worse)…I’m sure I’ve gained 10 lbs in the past two weeks – mostly from sweet tea and cheeseburgers…I’ve talked before about taking control and taking care of myself…and it worked, while I stayed focused…

But, that’s not happening anymore…and I feel….blech…

This morning, while I was driving to work, I was thinking about why I’m not able to sustain the focus on myself…and I think my goal is too vague and I’m too vague about how I’m going to get there…I’m a planner…I’m an organized planner…it’s what I do, it’s who I am…

But I don’t plan our meals…I barely write a grocery list…I don’t keep us (as a family) organized…and it’s leading to chaos, utter chaos…and 10 extra lbs…because it’s easier to run through drive thru and order off the $1 menu (especially since sweet tea is a $1 – that’s just EVIL!)…

With any big, fat, hairy goal I give myself, I need a plan…but first, let’s start with the goal.  My birthday is at the end of October (October 30 to be exact).  I thought that it would be fitting to give myself a birthday present this year – the gift of not feeling like mush.  The official start date is October 1 but since I’m pretty excited, I’ll probably get started a little tomorrow…I would like to lose 10 lbs by the end of the month, but overall I want to be less like a side of mashed potatoes (soft and mushy)…

What’s the plan?  That’s where I’m fuzzy – I know I need to eat right and exercise…that’s a big ole duh…but what exactly do I need to do?  Since this goal is a 30 day goal, I’m thinking of doing Jillian Michael’s 30-Day Shred, again…but this time the straight 30 days instead the 6 weeks it usually takes me…but I’m also adverse to pain, so I was thinking 30 Day Shred 3-4 times a week and supplementing with the treadmill 3-4 days a week…opinions?

With the food side, I think I just need to get organized…I’m envisioning charts, calendars, color-coded things…and a trip to Staples to make it happen (I’m sure different colored Sharpies will be involved)…I need to plan out every meal – so that’s it one less thing to think about…and, this is going to sound crazy, but I need to stop with leftovers…I hate leftovers…if I like a meal well enough to want to eat leftovers the next day, I usually end up eating the extra helping the same day I cook it (soooooo not good for me)…and I’ll bring leftovers for lunch the next day with every intention of eating it…and then find 10 reasons why I need to hit the drive thru…bad, I know…I need to accept the fact that I almost never eat leftovers and stop pretending that I do…

I know how to eat, I know what to eat, I know when to eat…I just need to make it one less thing to think about…because frankly, I’ve got too much on my plate (no pun intended) to be worrying about what we’re going to have for dinner…

Time to treat this like the office…where’s my clipboard and to do list?  It’s time to get to work!

Feeling Soft

Please do not mistake that title as anything warm, fuzzy, and/or sweet…I mean soft as in flabby, lacking definition, blech…

A couple of weeks ago I made the decision to let something, anything slide so that I could sort of maintain my sanity…and it ended up being exercise.  Yes, I realize that if I exercised I would probably have more energy, sleep better, feel better about myself, and a million other things…I could write the book on why I should work out…

Unfortunately, I’ve also been emotionally eating for a couple of weeks – yes, I am an emotional eater…stress, conflict, uncertainty – those are my usual triggers…I don’t feel like I have time…I constantly feel rushed…there’s always something else that needs to be done, handled, finished, completed, submitted, whatever…it never stops…and so I never stop…it’s my own fault…

And all of this has created this horrible soft, mushy feeling…and I hate it!

I was becoming firm, toned, high and tight…now, not so much…my treadmill just looks on in sadness, wondering when I’ll come play again…

I keep telling myself when life calms down a little – especially work – I’ll focus on myself again.  I know taking time for me is the healthiest thing I can do…I get that…I just need to slow down a little first…

As for the emotional eating, I have another reason excuse for that one…The Ex told me yesterday that he’s getting married in October…at the end of October…but he assured me it wouldn’t be on my birthday…um…ok?  Eebee wondered if I was going to be ok once it sank in…surprisingly, it doesn’t bother me…it seems strange to me….but it doesn’t hurt at all or make me angry…I feel like I’m learning something about a stranger…it’s just information that has no bearing on my life…is that healthy?

I wish it would mean he’d stop being so interested in my personal life, but somehow I doubt that…

But, it hasn’t stopped me from reaching for the cheeseburgers, either…

I Wouldn’t Mind Being Pampered…Maybe

I’ve been sick all week…and since it’s the second time in a few weeks, I’m feeling a little sorry for myself…wishing someone would pamper me, baby me, take care of me…except, I don’t allow that kind of thing…not since I was a kid and didn’t have a choice…

And that got me to thinking…why do I want to be pampered?  What does it mean to be pampered – what would I expect someone to do for me?  And why I haven’t I been pampered in the past?

I think I know the answer to the first one…like most of us (I hope!), the few times I was sick as a kid, my parents took great care of me…sometimes a little overzealously – the only time I ever had the flu, all my dad fed me for a solid week was Campbell’s chicken noodle soup and Saltines…and to this day, I detest chicken noodle soup…but I think there’s something comforting about having a parent take care of you when you’re in need…I hope Aidan and Sean feel that way about me one day…

I’m not sure what it means to be taken care of- I think it’s different for everyone…today, I would have said it was someone carrying Sean for me (he’s sick, too, so he’s definitely being babied)…or cooking dinner for me…but I don’t really know which answers the last question…

Why haven’t I ever been pampered, coddled, or babied?  Easy, because I don’t allow it…hell, I don’t even take good, well-meaning advice when I’m sick…you think I’m actually going to sit still and let someone else do everything for me?  I have no need to analyze this one to death…it’s just how I am…it’s probably a trust thing (and I have plenty of trust issues)…

This isn’t a woe-is-me, poor Michaela kind of thing…this is a genuine curiosity at why I have a desire for it when I’m sick and what it really means.  If I know what pampering is, I’ll recognize it when someone’s doing it…and then tell them to stop that shit and let me take care of myself…

I Shall Call Him…Uncle Bert

I have this weird habit of naming the vehicles I drive…I haven’t always done it, but the last 3 all had names…

The Mercury Grand Marquis was Grandma…Grandma was cool – chrome trim, tinted windows…she was sweet…I lost her in the divorce (prior to it being finalized, in a dirty under-handed way)…karma being the bitch she is, Grandma stopped working a few weeks after The Ex started driving her…I only laughed a little…

The Ford Explorer is/was Bubba…Bubba was not-so-cool – literally, the AC stopped working less than a month ago…Bubba should never have been purchased…that was a fight I lost, and technically I was proven right about why he should have stayed on the lot, but that’s irrelevant…Bubba is my problem now…Bubba is rusted out on the bottom, chipping paint on the top, and blows mostly hot air…no offense to anybody out there named Bubba, but that perfectly describes all the Bubbas I’ve ever known…

This one is a Buick LeSabre…Mom #2 has a newer model LeSabre that she calls Grandpa…it’s definitely a male car…I consider this one Grandpa’s older brother…and I think he’s an Uncle Bert…Uncle Bert is a loaner…while I’m grateful to have reliable transportation again, I’m glad he’s only on loan…that means there’s light at the end of this automotive tunnel I’ve been in for several years…

I said the other day that I would tell the story about how I acquired Uncle Bert…all of my level-headed friends keep telling me that I should be grateful and not get emotional about it, and that’s probably true, but I can’t help it…this one just makes me sad…

Let me start out by saying I am probably the least religious person on the planet…I respect other people’s beliefs, even those that I don’t understand…but my beliefs and spirituality are my own business and I don’t discuss them with anyone…that being said, even I have to admit that God (or whatever you choose to follow) works in mysterious ways…

The Step is not my only newly extended family (I say newly extended but my mom has been married to him for nearly 7 years, so not that new)…his mother, a very sweet lady, is still alive and has loved my boys and been kind to me from the very beginning…she was even pleasant to The Ex…

About two weeks ago (closer to 3 now), she fell at home and broke her hip…she had hip replacement surgery and went to a rehab center to recover…during that time, she told my mom that she had been praying that I would get a new car and find a way to move closer to work (I’ve got a 45 minute commute – hence the need for a newer vehicle and new home)…

Several days ago, she had a stroke and then had brain surgery to stop the bleeding on her brain…while the doctor’s were doing a routine, post-op scan, they found what they believe to be cancer…because of her age and condition, they don’t recommend chemo and will just make her as comfortable as possible…are you crying yet? I know I am when I think too hard about it all…In the past few days, she’s come down with an infection that you only get in hospitals or nursing homes…not MRSA, but one like it…for her family to visit her in ICU, they have to wear a hazmat suit…Are you freaking kidding me?!

When I called The Step about Bubba the other day, he and his sister decided to loan me their mother’s car…and all I’ve been able to think is that this isn’t how her prayer should have been answered…isn’t there a Plan B we can utilize? The fact that this sweet little old lady ever prayed for me at all when she has a massive family that could also use some prayers is humbling…the fact that her prayer was answered (if you subscribe to that thinking) is even more humbling…I’ve never felt less worthy in my life…

So I will treat Uncle Bert with all the respect I can…and I will add my thoughts to those of everyone’s else for a speedy recovery for that wonderful woman…

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