Thursday, December 31, 2009


A healthy me means more than just exercise, eating right, and taking care of my teeth. Healthy me means being able to process emotional events that are an everyday part of life in a manner that is not self-destructive. For whatever reason, my family seems to implode right around Christmas time. It's like everyone in my family from the aunts and uncles on the east coast, to my nuclear family in California secretly decide that December 25th is going to be the day that they act selfish and crazy and throw hissy fits and yell and pout and guilt and cry and tease and hurt.

This year, as I have done a few times in the past, decided to opt out of the holiday "traditions." I chose to have Christmas with my boyfriend and his family, who live only 20 minutes north of us. I had a very busy fall, and was traveling nearly the entire month of October (Spain, France, Las Vegas, Walla Walla, Cle I couldn't even think of booking another flight and having to haggle with my boss for MORE time off around Christmas, so I told my family I would be staying up here.

My boyfriend and I had a really mellow Christmas. It was nice. I got periodic text messages from my older sister about the happenings at home. I got e-mailed pictures of my dad's $90 Christmas tree (running joke in my family, he always gets taken to the cleaners when buying a tree), and phone calls from my mom. There was the usual drama with the east coast family, but things seemed calm in California.

I was back at work the Monday after Christmas, and around lunch time I got a call from my mom. She was calling to inform me that she was taking a two week hiatus from family. O---K--- was my response...knowing there was more to come. She talked about how her and my sister discussed things, and she got confirmation from my sister that the reason I didn't come home for Christmas was because of my weight, and didn't want to get harassed by her. I just listened. I let her go on and on about how she feels like she is drowning from all of her family needing her and she needs a break. She's going to seek therapy (again) and take some time to herself. Just listening...

So I entertained the thought. Did I really not go home because of my weight? I tried to make that true, but couldn't. I've gone home plenty of times fat, and I've stayed home skinny. I just really didn't want to travel this year. But it doesn't matter what the real reason is, if my mom thinks something, then that is the way it is. No exceptions. I should have saved the song and dance and said "yes mom, you are the reason I didn't come home. You and only you. Never mind all the real reasons, it was you." What became really apparent to me as I mulled over my mom's words is that my sister was using me as a sheild. She cannot say to my mom the things she wants to, so she uses me.

Weird that I didn't want to go home, eh? Families are complicated, I know. My mom sees my not coming home as me "not dealing with things." If history shows that a bomb goes off in the same place, the same time every year, and I chose not to go to that place isn't After all, isn't the definition of insanity repeating the same action over and over and expecting a different result? Sigh...I don't think there is any right answer or winning in this situation. I wish I could call Dr. Phil and have him tell me what to do.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

My Story

My story is nearly identical to every contestant they show on The Biggest Loser (I was a chubby kid, tried every diet, now things have escalated, etc.) I won't bore you with the details of how I got here, the important thing is that I'm here, and I'm ready to change. One of the best things I've ever heard is (paraphrased) "if you want the things you do not have, you must do things you have never done."

In April, I met a girl on craigslist. She was looking for a workout buddy, as she was training for a half-marathon in November. I was looking for a workout buddy because I was signed up to do a half-marathon in June. Scheduling conflicts made it so Tracy and I didn't meet till well after my half-marathon (August) and her half-marathon was inching closer by the day. We began meeting for workout sessions...swimming in icky neighborhood ponds, or in the intimidatingly large Lake Washington. We met at 7am on Saturday mornings for walk/runs around Greenlake. She had a blog of her journey to do the half-marathon and lose an amazing 113 pounds. Mis-understandings, work, life, and tragedy prevented us from keeping up our meetings. I thought we had lost touch permanently.

A few weeks ago, I received a text from Tracy, checking in with me. I was glad to have her back. So glad in fact, I agreed to go to a Weight Watchers meeting with her, as she had become a recent member. I have not joined WW yet, but I'm not ruling it out. My boyfriend encouraged me to try on my own, because "you already know everything they are saying" was his rationale. He's right. But he's also skinny.

Fast forward to two days ago. Two days ago I began my new routine. I started "brushing and flossing" if you will. I started to do the things I have never done. What is different about this time? I don't know. Nothing yet. Anyone that has tried to lose weight knows it always starts out the same. Losing weight is easy, its the keeping it off part that is hard.

Today, without any knowledge of my new routine, Tracy posted a shout out to the followers of her blog to begin their own fight. After the ego boost of calling us all supermodels, she challenged us to join her. I couldn't type "I'm in" fast enough. That's the best thing about support. Its always there, waiting for you to take advantage of it. Do I think the timing of her call is coincidence? No. Its me getting exactly what I need, when I need it.

And now for the ever-cliche before photo:

I'm on the right (duh).

A dime a dozen...

Yes, blogs today are a dime a dozen. This blog will be no different then the average cyber-drool, except it will be MY cyber-drool. I have been toying with the idea of a blog for a few months now, but could never think of a title. Or a subject for that matter. Then I realized that this was solely for my benefit and no one would be reading it anyway. I now have my own electronic soap box and the support of the Verizon network to make it available to all!

About me: I'm 30. I live in Seattle. I love dogs (in a borderline creepy way). I am overweight. I'm ready to pull my life together, starting today.

I know, I know, yet another "journey" blog. I hope that in this blog my journey becomes more of a background set, not the main stage. It is more important for me to learn and reflect on the causes of why I do things, not the symptoms.

For example, I recently had and Oprah-esk "ah-hah" moment at my last dentist visit. My gums were not in the best shape, and the hygienist explained she was giving me a fresh start. It was up to me to maintain the level of cleanliness she had just given me. I realized my gums were a metaphor for my life...not being properly cared for. So I did every single thing she said. I bought new floss (and actually started using it), I rinsed with saltwater for a week, I bought these weird plastic toothpick thingys for after meals, and even bought a new sonicare toothbrush. I have been maintaining this routine for over a month and a half, and realized if I could change my oral health habits, I can change more of my bad habits. This case is pretty straight forward; symptom- unhealthy gums, cause-laziness/poor habits.

I know the causes of my other unhealthy habits will require slightly more detective work, but all have a common root- if can conquer one, I can conquer all.