My Progress!

Thursday, December 31, 2009

I guess it's fitting...

since I'm counting on 2010 being the year of changes for me (it's either put up or shut up as far as I'm concerned), Erik is making changes of his own. Apparently tonight, on what would have been our 15th anniversary, he has his first date with a guy. He's trying to pass it off as a casual get together with an old friend, but I could just tell by the look on his face and the "casual" way he tried to make it sound that there is more to it than that. His friend is gay...he's gay...there will most likely be beer or some other hard(no pun intended) beverages involved, they are watching a movie together at this guy's do you guys think this sounds?

He knows I've been somewhat depressed over our "anniversary" coming up, I really can't tell you why. I did fairly well last year...I almost forgot it was our anniversary (which is hard to do when you do something stupid like get married on new year's eve), but this year has been hard. Maybe because it was always kind of a milestone in our heads. We used to talk in terms of how far from 40 we were....we'd be married 15 years, Tanner would be almost 15 years old...etc. It was always so hard to fathom what our life would look like at 40. I can guarantee you I never thought it would look like this.

Anyway, him having his first date shouldn't really matter much. It isn't as if I would have wanted this marriage anymore if he stayed celibate for the rest of his life. Why then do I feel physically ill every time I think about him taking this next step?

I just talked to him about it and supposedly it isn't a date. Just two gay guys getting together for a movie and an introduction to World of Warcraft. A friend of mine on the SSN list I'm on said the following which got me laughing:

"2 gay guys, alone, watching a movie over NYE? No party? No Celebration? No Dancing? Sounds like a damn date to me. Either that or an incredibly sad night."

Hehe, thanks Kev. Whatever this is what it is. I guess it is better than having us two home together trying to avoid the elephant in the room (and I don't mean ME for once ;)

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Monday, December 28, 2009

Christmas Update

I apologize that I'm so late in updating how Christmas went. It went about as well as Christmas can go when you have to work. I was able to get a few minutes away from the phones to go watch Tanner open his gifts. He was thrilled with what little we were able to get for him. He was most thrilled with what his Papa got for him (a new ocarina with music books and a ipod shuffle). We got him several new Zelda books in this series he is reading...they are more like graphic novels,a book that teaches him to draw zelda and a new sketch pad with pencils. We also had a few stocking stuffers for him (kiss playing cards, zelda mints, and of course lots and lots of candy!

I got erik a new cook book by Ina Garten (we actually refer to her as 'Gina lol). He has some mad crush on her and had asked for one of her cookbooks. Can't wait for him to try out a few of her recipes. He actually made this chicken breast stuffed with goat cheese and sundried tomatoes the other day. I thought it was ok but Tanner said it was HORRIBLE lol. No worrying about dad's feelings hehe. He has made some other stuff from her that turned out really good though. I also picked him up David Sedaris' new book. I was amazed at how freaking tiny it was!!

I got my beautiful flowers a few days before Christmas and of course Tanner's gift :) It turned out to be this little decorative thing that says "FAMILY" on it. It actually is very pretty and goes with our current decor very well. A lot of our colors are kind of tuscany type colors (burnt oranges, deep burgandies, browns, etc) and his gift matches everything perfectly. We found a place of honor for it atop our entertainment center, but we still have to take a picture with it. I'll post that as soon as we get it taken.

Erik and Tanner spent most of the days with his family at my sister in laws. It sounded like they had fun. My youngest nephew is so cute and from the pics, I can't believe how much the other two have grown! Childhood passes so fast :(

Uggh, I just finished this post and lost about half of it due to a blogger error :S In a nutshell, I detailed how I had torn a tendon in my left calf on Christmas day. I finally went to the doctor later that night and learned that it was some kind of vestigial tendon or something that only a certain percentage of the population even has. It usually POPS when someone who hasn't been active in a while overdoes it. Unfortunately, I didn't have a cool story about how my injury occurred. Basically I was standing at my kitchen counter fixing breakfast...lame! I have been trying to challenge myself over the last month...making myself stand for longer periods, not use the chair in the kitchen at the first sign of fatigue...that sort of thing. That morning, I could feel my calf muscle tightening up, but kept thinking i would stand for just a few seconds soon as I finished a certain task...then I took a step and POW...I felt and heard something POP in my calf. It was incredibly painful and made walking difficult of course.

The doctor gave me some muscle relaxers and pain pills and we discussed bariatric surgery. I can't remember how much I've actually gone into it on here, but this is something I've looked into in the past. I got as far as trying to lose the weight for the surgery and then it all fell apart...I can't really remember what caused it. In truth, I was afraid of having the surgery and probably latched on to the first excuse NOT to have it done. Well, after talking with this doctor, i think I've decided to check into it again. It is certainly something I'll be exploring here in the next few months. I just realize that I'm at a point where it may just be impossible to really get the ball rolling in the other direction on my own anymore. I seem to encounter injuries and other obstacles trying to make the smallest changes and its frustrating.

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Thursday, December 24, 2009

Christmas Eve News

To celebrate my magically transformed attitude just in time for Christmas, I've decided to give semi-hourly updates. I'm starting this a bit late, but so far this is what I've recorded. I hope to record in real time from here on out:

8:00 AM: I'm working. Most of my customers are traveling and calling me for crazy requests like finding two alabama jersies in size L #8 along rt 231. Also have one co-worker hard at work tracking Santa along his route. He is currently in Japan.

10:00AM: Ok, so Tanner is so fricken' cute about what he "bought" at his school Christmas fair for us. He told me last night that it is "very beautiful" and he wants to set up the tripod and camera so that he can get a picture of Erik and I holding it. Remember when you got/made something for your parents and were SURE it was the absolute perfect gift? For was a pair of purple plastic heart grandmother tried to talk me out of them, but I remember thinking they were the most beautiful thing in the world and that my mom was going to LOVE them lol.

11:00AM: I have officially asked to get off early today. Looks like I'm first in the running yay! We'll see if they actually let me go. Tanner is napping and Erik is cleaning the kitchen in preparation of more cake baking and cookie making later tonight. Nothing like waiting until the last minute right? I guess it saved us from eating it all before it could be given away.

12:00PM: Tanner wants fudge for lunch. We offered a Lean Cuisine or Peanut butter sandwich with a small fudge chaser. He opted to take a nap instead.

1:20PM: Tanner is awake and demanding fudge. He won't take "Lean Cuisine" for an answer...stay tuned.

1:30PM: It's official, Tanner has declared a christmas eve hunger strike unless we give into his demands for a fudge only diet. We are currently in negotiations and hope to arrive at a settlement before things get too crazy.

2:49PM: Yay! I get off about an hour and a half early! On an entirely different subject...I peeked at my feedjit info and I'm always sorry. eta: I took out those particular phrases because it just dawned on me that actually putting those phrases in my blog is going to make it more likely for these freaks to find it.

5:25PM: Sorry I haven't updated in a few hours. I've been working on some layouts for my niece's christmas present. In the past few hours, Tanner has taken another nap since his dad and I are apparently boring the daylights out of him. Erik has reported that he dreamed he was at a Janet Jackson concert last night and she got tired and asked Erik to finish her concert. I told him that was the gayest dream he'd ever described to me. We've also spent quite a bit of our time listening to the worst Christmas station ever yet had the best time singing each song in the loungiest lizardiest style we could. We are having a sort of unspoken contest to see who can sing the cheesiest. So far, I think I'm winning

5:50PM: I just asked Erik if he could go get more coke. His answer: "Michelle, look at me:


I'm in the mood for cowbell...NO I can NOT go out for more coke!" That got a chuckle out of me lol.

7:40: watching White Christmas with Tanner. He needs a serious attitude readjustment. I think it is partly due to fudge withdrawal. I tried to watch "It's a Wonderful Life" with him; we made it as far as the pharmacy scene before he collapsed in a fit of tears. I think he is scarred for life. my work as a mother is done. guess I'll check out for today. Hope you all have a peaceful Christmas Eve and a lovely and safe Christmas day!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Still working on perspective

I haven't posted much lately because, to be quite honest...I've been indulging in a little holiday blues. I say indulging because sometimes, I really think you have to work harder at being unhappy than being happy. I must get something out of making myself miserable right? Otherwise I'd be doing more to make the changes I need to make and I've basically spent the last year going nowhere..literally. Ok, but this is me kind of getting drawn back into the wallowing so let's move on shall we?

I mentioned in my last post that this holiday season has been rough on me. I honestly don't know what my problem is. Maybe its because I expected to be somewhere else on my life's journey by now. I've spent the entire year passing all those goal weights I optimistically put on my google calendar only to find myself unchanged as each date came and went.

It isn't just about the weight. It has a lot to do with how empty my life is. Nothing has changed there either. Sometimes I think I stay away from the blog because I have nothing new to say. My days are pretty predictable and boring. I don't get out much, I don't have a life really beyond the walls of my home and I have only myself to blame. Something as simple as taking a trip to the store or even to the doctor takes prior planning to make sure I can handle the walk, won't have to wait long, etc.

There have been other things on my mind too. My upcoming 15 year anniversary with Erik, minor family drama, issues with friends...I think it all just kind of came to a head just in time for Christmas. So, I've spent most of the holidays seriously depressed and kind of just had the attitude of "Let's get this over with."

Yesterday, I slept until 11:00AM, woke up and spent about four hours with Tanner and Erik, then went back to bed when Erik took Tanner to a Dr's appointment. I woke up when they got home and intended on helping with Christmas cookies, but we got one batch made and I went to bed early (around 7:00PM). I don't know what happened between then and the time I woke up, but I woke up with this new perspective that kind of came out of nowhere.

I have been trying to count my blessings, but to be quite honest...all it really did was make me feel like crap for being unable to pull myself out of this depression. I actually prayed about it last night...and I don't pray often anymore...and this morning...instant clarity. I realized that I have spent the last several weeks mooning over what used to be...the family Christmases with my exciting it used to be to have my cousins there, my grandmother's house all decorated. My uncle and mom and later his wife playing pinochle until all hours while I watched tv or played video games with my cousins in the other room. It wasn't the Cleavers by any stretch of the imagination, but it was what made Christmas special to me. For many years, this was the only time I saw most of my family.

I've also thought about the extended family my mom built for us through her many friendships. The rounds we used to make on Thanksgiving,Christmas and New Years and how much fun it was to see everyone and remember old times. I lost touch with many of these people after she passed away.

So, I let myself get mired in what I didn't have anymore, but this morning I woke up and realized that I was LIVING as if I had much less than that. Because I was sleeping all the time and letting the depression kick my ass, I wasn't able to enjoy what I HAVE: a son who relies on ME to make sure HE has childhood memories to think back on. A husband who, despite all of our very non-traditional marital issues, loves me and cares about me. These were the people I was ignoring while I nursed and nurtured (?) this depression. They might have well not even existed for all the time I was devoting to mourning what no longer is. I was ignoring what was right in front of my face. Shame on me :(

Erik walked by my office today, after he and Tanner got back from the store and I stopped him to apologize. I knew he'd been worried about me and doing his best to make me feel better. I apologized for being so self indulgent and told him that I think I had finally realized what it meant to count your isn't just a simple listing of things one by is embracing and truly cherishing those things in our life that mean the most to us and not taking them for granted. It means taking time NOW to recognize them and experience them. Why is it so hard to just enjoy what IS and not what used to be or what might be in the future?

Later, when I got a break at work, I went downstairs to get some lunch and there on the island in our kitchen was a bouquet of my favorite flowers in a crystal vase. How awesome are they? Yeah, I'm feeling pretty blessed :)

I hope everyone has a wonderful holiday. I'm looking forward to spending the rest of the year working on my perspective and attacking 2010 with a vengeance! I'll be setting new goals and making plans and hopefully, I'll make some progress. xx

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Monday, December 14, 2009

It's a Wonderful Life?

Ok, I just had a God moment I think. I’ve been mulling things over since my last post. If you read my blog with any regularity, you have probably noticed a few patterns. First, I’ve had some crappy things happen to me. Second, I’m sometimes willing to take an honest look at myself and how I’ve managed to get to where I am today. Third, I just LOVE to pull out the violin every couple of posts and whine and complain and throw a grand ol’ pity party for myself. It is kind of a warped little dance I’ve been doing all year. I think the great thing about my blogging is that there is PROOF out there now; proof that I can’t ignore when it’s convenient. Proof that shows me that yes, while I have made some progress in some areas over the last decade or two…I still have a lot to learn. There is still a LOT of room for growth…and I’m not just talking about my weight. We all know that my weight is a symptom of much BIGGER struggle I have going on in my head.

The other day, I read a friend’s blog. She never fails to put a smile on my face, whether I’m reading her blog or chatting with her via msn. It is kind of ironic honestly, because as funny as she is…there have been many times in the time I’ve known her that she hasn’t always told me what I wanted to hear. We work together and when things between Erik and I started to go south, she was the one that really helped strip my blinders off. She helped me see all the excuses I was making for him and for myself and was relentless in forcing me to see things as they really WERE and not the way I was trying to imagine them to be. Until recently (when I gave her a link to my blog) I don’t think she had ANY idea about the extent of my weight problem and I was really ashamed to share the link with her. I even asked her not to read it until I was ready and as far as I know, she honored that request (I gave her the ok a few months ago). She hasn’t really said anything about the blog or about the realization that I am a ginormous fatty(we don’t work together as often as we used to so maybe it’s because of that…I find it hard to believe she would hold back if she truly had something to say ;) . To be honest, I wasn’t so embarrassed about her learning how much I weighed, seeing actual pictures, or reviewing my gargantuan measurements. I was ashamed because she was going to see my overwhelming and pathetic penchant for wallowing in my problems. Now I say she hasn’t really said anything about my blog, but today I think she told me just what I needed to hear…more on this later.

As ashamed as I am about my weight, I am truly probably more ashamed that I will turn 40 next year and while I may have moments where I can recognize my own part or responsibility in where I am at today, I haven’t quite figured out how to USE these realizations to move me PAST my problems; which brings me to this recent post of hers. I would encourage you to go read it for yourself, but here’s a little synopsis: Basically, she wrote about “It’s a Wonderful Life” and how she’s always had a problem watching it; not because it was sappy and at times saccharine, but mainly because, in typical Tammy fashion, she saw things in it that many other people missed: the fact that George had an awful lot to do with his current situation. George made decisions and choices throughout his life and those choices set him, as much as any circumstances outside of his control, on the path that led him to where we see him at the beginning of the movie. I read that and immediately felt the bright glaring spotlight of shame focused on my own glaring culpability in my current situation.

The weight is easy. I’m fat because ultimately, I make choices about what I’m going to or not going to put in my mouth and most of the time, I choose poorly. I also choose to not go to the gym or even do little things around the house that might slowly begin to build my strength up. Granted, I have a lot of crap in my head that often defeats me, but ultimately…the responsibility is on me. I choose to give into it all. I allow it to overwhelm me and defeat me. Even that is a decision I make.

Let’s talk about some other decisions I’ve made that have gotten me to where I am. First, I fell in love with Erik. I knew from the beginning that something wasn’t quite right. It took us two years (as good friends) with subtle and most times not so subtle chasing on my part to land him. That probably should have been my first clue. Once we were together, there were plenty of other signs that I chose to ignore. Regardless of anything Erik did in this situation, I made many decisions and really almost “forced” our relationship in a direction it wasn’t going in naturally. I didn’t get pregnant on purpose, but since we all know Tanner wasn’t immaculately conceived, I think we can agree that I should accept my part in creating him.

The financial problems we have encountered have also largely been due to our own choices. Yes, we have had oodles and oodles of medical bills and other unexpected things come up, I’m fairly certain that if we hadn’t been living way beyond our means for quite some time, things wouldn’t be quite as desperate as they are now. We would have been in trouble, but I think we could have dug our way out by now.

So yes, in many ways, my life sucks, but ultimately I think the thing that sucks the most is that I have to cope with the fact that I am the biggest reason it sucks; not erik, or Tanner, or my mom dying or whatever else I latch on to periodically to distract myself from the reality of my situation.

So these are things I’ve been mulling over since reading Tammy’s post. Flash forward to today…I get a call from my grandfather (hi papa :). He called to tell me he was sending money for Tanner’s Christmas, we talked about his upcoming wedding next March and how I was going to try to get Tanner and I up there around that time and somehow we ended up talking about my blog. Basically, he mentioned that he had read my last pity party (my words, not his) and felt like he needed to remark on some common threads or patterns he’s seen in the weave of my blog over the last year. I’m sure you can guess what they were. He acknowledged that while I can at times have moments of crystal clear self realization where I am open to accepting my part in the way my life has turned out…I also have many moments where I slip back into these periods of stagnation which keeps me stuck in this warped little static cha-cha you’ve watched me do all year. There can’t be any real growth because every time I take one step forward, I lose ground again. I set goals and then almost immediately lose sight of them and fall back into old patterns…the same old patterns that got me right to where I am today. Here is where I could come up with a bunch of excuses WHY I lose ground, but come on…you’ve heard them all before and in the end, you and I both know they are irrelevant. If I want to change my circumstances, I am the only one with the power to do that.

In the end, I thanked my grandfather for his advice, we said our goodbyes and, pondering the last bit of our conversation, went to check my email and there…like a period at the end of that conversation with my grandfather was Tammy’s comment on my last blog. You can go read it for yourself, but once again…I had to smile. I don’t know if it is God or fate or what, but someone or something is definitely trying to slap me upside the head this morning. Thanks Papa and Tammy for giving me the swift kick I needed. Here’s hoping I can keep my eye on the prize this next year and actually make some progress towards my goals.

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Friday, December 11, 2009

The scale is calling me

It's been calling me for a week. I know where it is. It isn't difficult to get to, but somehow I keep forgetting to pull it out and step on it. Part of me is worried I'm going to get the big "E" which means "EEEEEK you are too damn fat for this scale, please exit the platform." I have a feeling I may have gained some weight in the last few weeks. I feel like I have. I've been fighting a depression the last month or so and while I've made some gains emotionally, I think I've been resorting to old habits to cope with the depression.

The holidays pretty much suck for me nowdays. I lost my mom on Thanksgiving back in 2002 so every year I have to cope with that anniversary. Add to that the fact that I have NO family around me (outside of Tanner and Erik's family) and the holidays overall just seem like a non-event anymore. I feel bad, because Tanner gets shortchanged too. Our house is too small for a real tree so we have this sad little charlie brown Christmas tree on a coffee table downstairs. We haven't even bothered decorating it. I also have my 15th wedding anniversary coming up this New Years Eve. Both Erik and I really stopped counting our anniversaries back in 2008 since that is when we officially decided we were splitting up. The only reason we are still married really is because we are too poor to get a divorce.

I was talking to a friend yesterday about my grief over my marriage resurfacing and how difficult it was to understand it because I knew that I would never take Erik back and ...just for the record...I'm pretty sure Erik has NO plans on trying to come back (to the marriage...he lives with us, but you's complicated lol) 20 years of wondering why I was never enough for him was quite enough for me thanks. We have a much better relationship now that all that pressure is off to keep a fake marriage going while ignoring the elephant (which wasn't ME btw!) in the room.

In talking to my friend yesterday, I realized that what I think I was grieving most about was that I really didn't have a chance to fight for my marriage. The fact that he is gay means there is absolutely nothing I could have done to save my marriage (short of growing a new appendage and taking steroids to get the kind of physique he is apparently attracted to). When I was thinner, I just thought I wasn't good enough of a person for him...and even though I was in fairly good shape, I always felt like the "fat girl" so I guess I probably still blamed how I looked even then. As I gained weight, our relationship actually improved; probably because I wasn't pressing him for sex or getting upset at the lack of physical affection he failed to show or initiate.

I don't want you to think that Erik was a jerk. He wasn't and he isn't. He is a really great guy who made all the wrong decisions for the right reasons. He was trying to live the life he felt was moral. The life his family wanted for him. He got me pregnant trying to convince himself he was straight and then married me because it was the right thing to do. He was always a great father and a great friend, but I realize he was never really a husband to me. Not in the way that separates a great friend from a great husband. I'm not just talking sex here...I'm talking about the fact that I realized the other day that I have never had a man look in my eyes, tell me he loves me, and MEAN it the same way I MEAN it. I've never had a man be just as happy to be with me as I was to be with him. I've never known THAT kind of love and I sometimes wonder if I ever will.

Of course it could be a lot worse. For the time that we were married, I had a man that I enjoyed being around, was a great father, good provider for the most part and yes....he did love me, still loves me...just more of the brother/sister kind of love and not the passionate sort. I know many other couples who have that passion, but every other aspect of their marriage sucks! All in all, if I had to chose between the two, I'd probably choose Erik all over again even knowing what I know now. Of course, if I had ever had the choice between Erik and a happy and healthy relationship with a straight man, I would have chosen the straight man hands down and kept Erik as my fabulous gay best friend.

Tanner, in his uncanny ability to pick up on my emotional state, broke my heart the other day. Erik calls him from work on his lunch break and out of absolutely NOWHERE, Tanner gets on the phone with him and says "I don't want you to break up." Not knowing what he was referring to, Erik said "What do you mean you don't want what to break?" Tanner said "I don't want you to break up with mommy" and started to cry :( Wahhhhh I have no idea where it came from, we haven't talked about anything like this recently and hadn't prior to him talking to Erik that evening. Erik did a great job of reassuring Tanner that we would always be there for him no matter what happened between Erik and I, that he would never have to choose between us, etc. In the end, Tanner was somewhat satisfied, but I think it was hard for both Erik and I to see him struggling with the concept.

Ok, well guess this is proof that blogging helps because I think I'm in a much better frame of mind at the end of this post than I was at the beginning. Someone recently told me to count my blessings when I asked how to get through a rough holiday season. It seems so obvious doesn't it? Almost cliche, but when I read her suggestion it really did help. Instead of focusing on what I don't have this holiday season, count my blessings...Tanner is doing great in his new placement at school, Erik has a new job he loves, I have good friends around me and great blogging buddies who put up with my sporadic posting style.

Btw, I am very grateful to those of you who still read and comment despite my obvious neglect (both in posting and commenting and reading your blogs). In the past week, just getting a comment now and then actually helped me pull my but out of bed on my days off so that I could get a few things accomplished around the house.

One more update: the craft fair didn't happen. I spent weeks upon weeks preparing for it then the morning of, Erik got sick and the friend that was going with me had a domestic issue and I couldn't manage getting there and setting up on my own. I probably should have tried, but to be honest....I was scared....scared because I didn't know how far I was going to have to walk, could I unload the car by myself without having a heart attack. If I did manage it, was I going to be in any shape at the end of the day to pack everything back up, etc. For some reason, the person that could muster up the courage to carry a folding chair through Hobby Lobby took a holiday that morning. I stayed home rather than expose myself to some embarrassment at not being able to manage it on my own. This probably triggered the following week's depression to because it is yet another time my weight has limited my independence :(

Ok, enough of that! I was on my way to ending this on a positive note and I still am dammit! There is a Christmas party at Tanner's big brother's church tonight and he invited all of us. As usual, part of me doesn't want to go for all the reasons I didn't go to the craft fair, but I may force myself to go anyway. I'm sure it will be fine and I'll enjoy spending some time with Tanner OUTSIDE the darn house.

I'll let you know if courage wins out over cowardice tomorrow.

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Thursday, December 3, 2009

Shopping and the poor man's wheelchair

So some of you might wonder how I'm managing shopping if I can't even cook an entire meal without a chair in the kitchen. I am still amazed at how easily it was to go from kick boxing to my current state. When all you have to do is roll out of bed and take a 5 second walk to your office and that is about the extent of the activity you get for the day, is it any wonder I can even muster up the strength to roll out of bed? To say I am out of shape just doesn't even do justice to how SERIOUSLY out of shape I truly am. Every time I have the least little problem health-wise, I'm reminded how close I am to becoming completely bedridden. Just one little mishap or illness can erode what little strength I have left and possibly compromise my mobility to the extent that I WON'T even be able to roll out of bed any longer.

So, with this in mind, I made a drastic and humiliating decision. I am going to have to start reclaiming some of the things Erik started doing...first, because I was working too much to do them myself (running errands, grocery shopping, taking Tanner to doctor's appointments, etc), then later because I no longer had the strength to do them myself. The situation was snowballing on me and I realized that it wasn't going to take much more before I couldn't even do the things I was doing now...that's scary. If you've ever wondered (like a thinner me used to wonder) exactly *how* an extremely obese person gets blog should answer your question. It starts slowly. You gain weight over time and gradually you start adjusting your life and activities to accommodate that weight gain. At first, you start waiting for a parking spot closer to the entrance of the store, leave earlier to get a closer spot at work. When you go grocery shopping, you stop doing the once every week or so shopping and start shopping in more manageable bites of time that won't require you to be on your feet an hour or longer or require you walking the entire store. You start using the elevator instead of the stairs. Before you know it, this reduction in activity means you lose bits of muscle mass which makes mobility and physical activity even more difficult. The lack of activity contributes to your weight gain which makes everything more difficult. Before you know it, you discover internet need to leave the house at all for that. You go through the drive through at the drug store pharmacy vs. walking in. And so on, and so see the vicious cycle here.

If you happen to have problems with depression (like I do) that only exacerbates your problems as you likely will spend most of your free time sleeping. The more weight you gain, the more mobility you lose, the more depressed you get. Again, vicious cycle.

The problem I was faced with was I going to attempt these outings without getting myself into a situation that I might have a problem getting out of. How was I going to go to the store, walk from my car into the store, walk around the store browsing products AND stand at the check out line long enough to pay for my items and then walk back to my car? Sounds like a simple outing to most of you. For me, it might as well be climbing mount everest. I finally came up with a solution. Yes, I get funny looks, yes it is somewhat humiliating (it would probably be incredibly humiliating for most of you, but when you weigh what I weigh, the bar for what sort of humiliating situations you can endure definitely gets raised. What I did was load a folding chair in the backseat of the car. When I got to the store, I threw the folding chair into a cart and walked until I really needed to sit down. I tried to last as long as I could which quite honestly, wasn't all that long. We are talking way under 5 minutes at a time on my feet. Usually my cue to break out the poor man's wheelchair was about the time my back started aching, knees started trembling, calves get the picture. Pretty much, if I knew the next step was going to possibly endanger anyone who might be unfortunate enough to share the aisle with me should I fall, I sat down. A few clerks gave me funny looks when I whipped out the chair. Some customers tried to act as if it was the most normal thing in the world to carry a folding chair under your arm while you shop and avoided my gaze. In all honesty, they probably could have cared less lol...they were probably more interested in their own crafting pursuits to worry about the morbidly obese woman taking a crafting break in the middle of aisle 12. Yes, it was a bit embarrassing, but I was proud of myself for getting out there despite my limitations. I have to start somewhere.

I suppose I could have used one of their wheelchairs or hopped on the motorized chairs they have at some stores, but to me...that is only one more step towards immobility. Right now...that is MY "waiting for a closer parking spot" or giving up another errand to erik. If I accept my current limitations then I'm only setting myself up for the next step...becoming completely immobile and I refuse to accept that. I may not have made much progress this year where my weight is concerned. I've actually lost about 30 lbs in total which is progress I suppose seeing as I've managed to gain about 25 lbs a year for the last 10 years. I'll take what I can get :)

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