Monday, January 23, 2012

A Milestone

Well....I have hit a milestone. I lost 1.6 pounds this last week and I have gotten my first milestone star of 5 pounds. I have officially lost a sack of potatoes. Woo Hoo! Honestly....I was not sure the scales would show a loss. I gave up on exercise last week after Monday, Friday I ate over my points and Saturday and Sunday I stayed within my points but didn't make great choices in what I ate. I was mentally prepared for a gain. Yeah....this weekend was kind of stressful. Why? It just was. Probably the mental preparation for going to St. Louis, the nagging worry that they might not be able to help David once we are there and just a million other little things that go with living in Lisaland. Several times over the weekend I had the I don't give a sh!t! feeling. But I tried my best to persevere. Truth is though....that if I had made better choices, the loss numbers might have been greater. As it is though.....I am good with 1.6 pounds and when I have made it through this current week, it will be much easier to get down to business with continuing to make changes and get serious about working out.

This week is going to be another week where my will to change is going to have to override my stress levels and my need for comfort food. Today and tomorrow will be all about  getting everything ready and not forgetting anything. That is stressful in itself. Then the trip. It is an 8 hour trip and long road trips stress me. (I also haven't forgotten my last trip where I got lost in East Hell and thought I would never find my way out.) Once mother in law is a fantastic cook and I know she will be conjuring some wonderful food because she is celebrating Z's birthday and then there is going to be family in and out. The beauty of WW is that I can eat what everyone else eats....I just have to decide how much and what I want to use my points on. Finally...we will be running all the time, so normal eating times and meals won't always be possible. I also know that a trip to Steak n' Shake is on the agenda. I looked at the online menu and I have decided the only thing I can have on there and stay within my points is a glass of water. Even their salads have ridiculous points. I could feel my arteries clogging just reading the menu.

The last three weeks and especially the last few days have taught me that I can do this! I have a goal and I keep it pictured in my head and I can meet that goal if I want it bad enough. I have what it takes I just have to want my goal more than I want the second helping or the huge slice of cake.

Well...I am off today and I have a list longer than my arm of things I must do. Organization will help keep the stress down, but to be quite honest...laying down and going back to sleep would make me so happy right now! Not gonna happen though. Guess I am ready to get this day into full swing and to keep myself on track. Wish me luck! Oh and....Yay me on my milestone!!!!

Saturday, January 21, 2012

So....About Last Night.......

So....about last night......

Well Z turned sixteen yesterday and last night my house was inundated with high school kids. This morning my house smells of teen and shame. The shame is on my part. Okay....really I shouldn't be ashamed because I did fairly well, but I didn't do as well as I had hoped I would do. What the heck am I talking about? Keep reading!

They say it takes 28 days of repetitive behavior for a habit to form. While I had not hit the 28th day yet, apparently I was far enough in to be getting the thinking right. As I said....yesterday the Z-man turned 16. He was planning on a night of friends, karaoke and then his guy friends staying the night. The festivities started right after school and I came home with pizza, soda and cake. Just what I was thinking in purchasing sugar for already uber hyper teens is a mystery to us all, but I did. Z has kids over quite often for these little all nighters but last night was a larger scale. I think there were about 20 kids in and out throughout the evening and about 15 guys ended up staying the night. Right here let me give a shout out to Little Ceasars Pizza. I was able to get six large pizza's for $30 which more than fed all the kids. LC has pepperoni, sausage and cheese pizza's in the large size ready to go for $5 a piece and their pizza is good. Any place else I would have paid at least twice that. For a budgeted was awesome. Now....back to our story.....

So for nineteen days I have been a model Weight Watcher girl. I have been hyper vigilant on my points and haven't veered once. Last night though....some of the old thinking of (I don't give a sh!t...I want cake) started rearing its ugly head. Luckily I recognized the thought process and behavior and put it in check before any catastrophic damage was done. I had done my points carefully throughout the day so that I would be able to have two slices of pizza (cheese and sausage were 5 points each) and a slice of cake (7 points). Once those were used up....I was actually full. Then it began.

It was a Friday night and the kids were coming in and out of my front door as if it were revolving. Z was super charged with it being his birthday and all the other kids followed suit. The minute the cake and soda started hitting their systems my house and yard became very energetic and loud. They weren't doing anything wrong....they were all just wound up. They were chasing each other up the stairs, running through the yard and being super loud wherever they went. It had been a long week and I could feel my nerves starting to twitch. Soon they wanted to head to the ball game and then go karaoke. Since Z is now 16 he can drive without restrictions and he was preparing to take a couple of kids in his car. My stomach was in knots as they took off. Once I knew they had reached their body went right in for the kill. I grabbed a piece of pizza and a piece of cake. Immediately I felt alarms going off in my body. I kept telling myself that I didn't care. I had been really good and tomorrow I would get back on track. I deserved this after all. My son just turned 16! All these thoughts were trying to block out the sound of WARNING LISA! YOU ARE ABOUT TO DERAIL YOURSELF!!!! As I sat down and took my first bite of pizza.....the warning took a hold. I said....What am I doing? I was not hungry, I was stressed. I was worried. I was tired and I wanted some comfort, but I was NOT hungry. Since I was feeling all these emotions I allowed myself two bites of pizza and two bites of cake. David happily ate the rest.

Yes...I went over my points a bit and I made sure I documented it, but I didn't do anywhere near the damage that I would have done a month ago. I would have eaten the pizza, the cake and probably had more never looking back and excusing myself because I was stressed. So will probably take me another 28 days until I have the thinking completely down, but I can see that I have changed my thought processes dramatically. In fact I have been trying to figure out how I can change my eating the next two days so I can stay full and still cut back a bit. After all....Monday is weigh in day.

The rest of the party went fine....although I haven't had the nerve to go down and do an actual body count yet. The sugar kept them wired until well after 1 a.m.. and between that and our house getting TP'd no one got much sleep until close to 2. Oh well....16 only comes once and in the words of the great John Mellencamp "hold onto sixteen as long as you can....changes come around soon to make us women and men!"

So while I wasn't perfect....I was pretty darn good and I am proud of myself to know that I am finally not only physically trying to make changes but the mental is starting to change too. Will this be my last stumble? Of course not. Change does not come over night and it is not without its uphill battles from time to time. If change was easy....I would have done it a long time ago. As it is.....some days are giant leaps and others are the tiniest of baby steps. As long as none of those steps go backward....then I am good with the journey.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Defying Gravity is really really official that I am fine. I had my follow up exam this morning with my doctor and I was given a clean bill of health. What a huge relief. So now on to what this particular blog is all about....Happy ME!!! Well okay let us say....trying to be a healthy me!

Today ended week two of me actually doing Weight Watchers the way it was intended. After two full weeks of sticking to my points like glue...I have lost 4 lbs. It is not exactly a Biggest Loser loss, but trust me, I will take it. This weight was lost with me eating only within my points and drinking lots of water. There was absolutely no exercise involved. While it is a my book there is more to a healthy body than weight loss. I feel like as much as I hate exercise and holy batman I truly is necessary to make everything function at its peak. So today I began. Sigh!!!

I was still on the fence as I crawled from my bed this morning as to whether working out was going to happen today or not. I then decided just not to think about it and do it. As I was driving to the gym I made up my mind that this workout was going to be an easing into it workout and not a crazy workout where I end up feeling awful or hurt myself and then I don't want to do it again. I limited myself to 10 minutes of walking and 20 minutes on the elliptical. Man...I thought I was going to die. Missing all those months sure does show. I am going to try to workout at least 4 times this week. It will be a gradual progression back into the workouts I need to be doing. It will also be interesting next Monday to see what WW and working out combined do for the numbers.

So since I am doing this...I thought I would share info as I go. This maybe a recipe, a workout or just something that works for me and maybe will work for you. Today what I am sharing is water. Most people do not drink enough water and it shows in their skin and in overall how they feel. I try to drink 6-8 glasses a day. When I do it like I should then my body definitely tells me when it feels dehydrated. I can feel it in my lips (they start chapping), in the dryness of my skin and even in how my hair looks. So one day as I was playing on Pintrest I found this really interesting recipe for water from Jillian Michaels. It is actually super water as it cleanses the liver as well as body impurities. It is also great for people who really don't like the taste of water. Michaels recommends drinking this for 7 days as a way to help with weight loss numbers. The drink is simple:
Mix 60 oz of purified (bottled) water with
1 dandelion tea bag (you can get these at most GNC's or online at GNC)
1 Tbsp sugar free cranberry juice
2 Tbsps. lemon juice
Drink it throughout the day and drink it all.
The drink does not have a bad flavor and it is actually thirst quenching. It is also your recommended amount of daily water. My David who is not a fan of water will guzzle the stuff. The added bonus that I have found is that sometimes when walking or working out my fingers tend to swell a bit and they don't when I drink this. And this is great for not only someone on a diet but also women who bloat at that time of the month and anyone who needs to up their amount of daily water. It you try this...let me know what you think.

So a new year and a new healthier chapter has begun in my life. So much is happening this year a reunion, a birthday and with any luck multiple trips to St. Louis to improve Davids life. I want to be fit and healthy for it all. As I was working out this morning a song came on my playlist an I decided to make it my theme song for the week. We all need a soundtrack to our lives and this week...this is mine. I really think I might just try defying gravity!

Friday, January 13, 2012

Preach a Little....Teach a Little

Phewwwww! In case you haven't already heard.....I AM FINE! No....not in the bragging sort of way. I am fine in the my girls have no lumps sort of way. Maybe this means I will actually get a good nights sleep tonight full of no dreams or at the very least peaceful dreams.

As scared as I was....and I was definitely scared....the clean bill of health made all of the fear worth it. It also gave me some good life lessons and I am about to preach a little to all the wonderful women who read this and the wonderful men who read this who have women in their lives that they love.

I found my lump by doing a regular self breast exam. I am a firm believer that women should start these as young as possible. The reason for this is that whether you realize it or not....your fingers get to know your breasts. Once a doctor gave me some kind of a gel filled bag and said that in it were lump/knots of varying sizes. He told me to feel around on the bag until I could find all the lumps. I was only able to feel the largest one. The rest were undetected. He said this bag was a facsimile of a woman's breast. I felt then and there that if that is how hard it was to find breast lumps...I would never even know if I had one. I was wrong. The more exams you do....the more familiar you are with what should and shouldn't be under you fingers. Twice I have found lumps and twice they were actually something....just not cancerous tumors. The first time was a cyst that just burst/dissolved on its own. Today there was actually something there but it is just under the skin like a small clogged duct. So in both cases my fingers did feel something that was there and shouldn't be. Because of all of this....I will continue to be vigilant in my self exams (I do the 1st of every month).

Second...when you reach the age of 40, regardless of how clean your family history is....get regular mammograms. If you have a active family history of breast cancer, your doctor may advise you to start even earlier. While mammograms are not particularly a fun way to spend a half hour or so.....they can be life saving (especially if you are not great at doing the self exams). For those who have as yet to experience a mammogram: in a screening mammogram an x-ray machine is used to take pictures of your breasts. Before all is said and done, your girls do feel quite squished (I am now a AA thanks to this mornings activities) but the few seconds of discomfort are worth it to hear the doctor say "All is well." After a screening mammogram you are then allowed to leave and your results are sent to your doctor. If you do feel a lump or something is found on the screening mammogram, then a diagnostic mammogram is done.  A diagnostic mammogram is much like the screening only a little more in depth making sure to take pictures of the suspicious place. Following the diagnostic you are ask to wait until the radiologist reads your films. Usually if there is a question following the films a sonogram is done on the area. After the radiologist reads those too....then you are invited back and the radiologist gives your their findings. This is usually followed by a follow up visit with your doctor in which you and your doctor discuss the results. If something has been found then a biopsy is usually done to determine whether it is a cyst or a tumor and if a tumor what kind. If it is the worst case scenario then you and your doctor form a game plan to remove the tumor and get you healthy.

The important thing to remember is that breast cancer and colon cancer are two VERY curable cancers because with proper screening, both can be caught in early stages and survived. Late stage cancers that have gone unscreened and undetected are the ones where the mortality rate is very high. As women....we owe it to ourselves and the other women we love to keep up with these screenings. If you are a man....let the women in your life know just how much you love them by encouraging them to stay proactive with their health. A few minutes once a month and a half hour once a year really isn't too much to do to ensure a healthy future and peace of mind.

Okay the lesson and preaching are over. I am fine and David gets to go to Shriners on schedule with a healthy mama! Now it is time to get down to the business of getting really healthy and changing less than stellar habits. Still through it all....I have been a good little Weight Watcher girl even though I have not had the desire to workout this week. Next week though....will be a different story. I plan on changing my destiny one day at a time!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Life is Interesting

Life is a lot of things, but I would have to say one thing that sticks out the most is that life is interesting. More interesting than that is how we humans handle the more "interesting" times life provides us. I myself throw emotional tantrums when life gets interesting in a way that makes me scared, mad or just plain unhappy. People don't see me do it outwardly but on the inside I tend to fall apart. My mind races to the worst possible place or shuts down altogether and something inside me screams out about the injustice of it all.That is when I look for the most self sabotaging things I can find. When I was young it was alcohol. It is flat out amazing that I didn't turn into an alcoholic because I was ticked off and unhappy a lot. As I grew older though and life really swung out of and I started our love/hate relationship. I loved to eat when I was upset but afterwards I hated what the food did to me and the fact that food was where I chose to bury my sorrows. It has taken me a lot of years to admit this stuff but once I admitted seems that I am aware enough of it that I am trying to change. Believe me....this week has been a test.

Since Monday and finding my lump....I have known of two people close to my age that have died of cancer. I have seen nothing but commercials for Cancer Centers of America and since cancer seems to be a hot button here in the USA, I have randomly turned into several TV shows whose main focus was cancer. I am about to put myself into a self-imposed media blackout. Every time I am inundated with this stuff I feel my heart race and apparently my blood pressure is reacting to my stress, because it  has sent it from a nice 117/78 to a not so nice 136/96. It is all just stress, worry and fear. You know...the inner tantrum I was speaking of.

I am somewhat proud of myself though. In all of this....I have not gone off Weight Watchers once. I confess that I have done zero exercise, but I have eaten healthy and not once have I reached for any of my go to comfort foods. Peanut butter is often one of my comfort foods and being on WW peanut butter is acceptable if you can fit into your points. It fit nicely into a peanut butter sandwich the other night on Sara Lee 45 calorie bread. For a mere 5 points....I was comforted. maybe I am still reaching a little for the comfort food, but it isn't like I downed a whole carton of Chunky Monkey. In fact....even after my little comfort sammie, I still had points to spare. Yay me!

I did wind up at the doctor yesterday though (my GP) and found out that my back is in fact muscle pain. It appears that lifting a 70+ lb. child  along with carrying my 25 lb. purse and my equally heavy work bag (all on my left side) can cause muscle strain and pain. Who knew????? So we are back to the muscle relaxers. It is feeling magically better today. I have also gotten to take Z to the doctor where he was diagnosed with the latest virus. For two days he has had his head stuck in a trash can as he has dry heaved all his internal organs out.  Hoping tomorrow will be the end of PukeFest 2012 and that David doesn't come down with it.

So you see....I have been a bit preoccupied and other than the media blitz on cancer....I really haven't had much time to dwell. Don't get me wrong....I have gone to and through the worst case scenario in my mind. It wasn't pretty....but seldom do our worst fears come into play. If they do though....I have to have faith that everything will work out the way it is suppose to. There are simply some things we have no control over.

This morning I woke up and felt around for my lump. I know that will be the first thing the x-ray tech will want to know is the location. I couldn't find it. Is it still there and I was just willing myself not to feel it? Has it vanished like the last one? Who knows?! I refuse to get my hopes up nor will I let myself fall apart physically or any further emotionally until I know something. The thing is....tomorrow since it is a diagnostic mammogram and not a screening they will hold me there until the films are read. They will then call me back (they being the radiologist) and tell me what they see or don't see. If they don't see anything.....I am good to go and on my way. However....if they do see something then all I will know is that they do in fact see something. That something could be a fibroid cyst or a tumor. I will then have to wait until Monday to see when I can be scheduled for a biopsy. Once biopsied I will have to wait longer still to see if we are dealing with cancer or not and if we are......what course of action to take. Unless nothing is found tomorrow....I could be sitting on the edge of my seat for some time to come....and anyone who knows me......knows that I am anything but a patient person!!!! Arrrggghhhh

So why all the detail and why do I feel the need to inundate my blog readers with all this stuff? Because.....regardless of the outcome.....I am not the first woman who has gone through all of this and I will not be the last. It is of some comfort to know that others have gone through what you are going through and.......survived! It is nice to know that you are not alone and if you have questions...there might just be someone out there not particularly connected to the medical community that has been there and can help. I have a couple of those people who have been there....done that....and are still here to tell about it. They have been my inspiration and though I am sure they don't know it.....they have helped me not fall apart physically. Maybe someday...I can do the same for someone else. Even if this does prove to be nothing more than a cyst.....the not knowing is enough to drive you mad. is interesting. It can be smooth or it can knock you off course. It can give you great joy and it can also give you great sorrow. We never know what is just around the it or good or bad, but with a little bit of faith and wonderful friends and family the road is surely a whole lot easier.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

The "C" Word

I know! Day 2 on this dusty old blog. Well...there is a reason. I like to think of this blog more as a place for self-improvement instead of self-expression. Yesterday I talked about lies we tell ourselves and also about my addiction which is FOOD. I also admitted that I am a stress eater. Any amount of stress (and I always have stress which explains a lot) and I am looking for the yummiest thing I can find to comfort me. Thus I guess the name....Comfort Food. Well yesterday...I jumped a big hurdle with stress eating. I was highly stressed and yet I didn't dive for the cookies. In fact....I did just the opposite. It was as if all hunger or desire for food shut down. Fear not...I am sure my appetite will be back in full swing soon, but for is not even on my radar.

So why all the stress? Because once again I am dealing with something I hoped I would never have to go through. The "c" word has come back into my life...and no....I'm not talking cheesecake. I am however referring to cancer. I can't even say it out loud and I can barely type it. But here is what has come to pass. I am like a pitbull on crack when it comes to being hyper vigilant about cancer screening. My mother ended up with four primary cancers and two of her sisters along with one of her brothers have had breast cancer. Mom and another brother also had colon cancer. As we have gotten older.....I have had several cousins who have had breast and colon cancer. After watching my mother fight through, suffer through and eventually die from this horrid disease it has become a great fear of mine....especially while my kids are still young. I have though been tested for both the breast and colon cancer gene and both came back negative. You would think this would give me peace of mind....and it did until Jan. 1st of 2012.

The first of every month I do a regular breast exam and on Jan. 1st, I thought I might have felt something in my right breast. Not being sure and not wanting to truly admit I might have felt something....I thought I would wait a week and check it again. Sadly my little lump was never far from my mind as a local news woman who had fought breast cancer for 7 years died this week and it was pretty much all you saw and read about locally. So yesterday afternoon after I got off work I decided to check again and see if I still felt the lump. I did. Was it bigger? More prominent? Was it the same? I had no idea. All I knew was this is the month we are suppose to take David to Shriners Hospital and I didn't want this standing in the way. I called my doctor and said I had found the lump. I was not due for a check up until February but the nurse immediately scheduled me for a diagnostic mammogram on Friday (yeah I know....Friday the 13th) and a follow up with the doctor on Monday. In medical time this was very swift. In patient is an eternity. Thus my new stress.

So here's the deal. Reality tells me that I have been vigilant in keeping up with screenings and testing and if this is something....then chances are very good that it has been detected early and I will be fine. There is also the possibility that it is a cyst or some other benign foreign lump. This is not the first time I have gone through this. In 2008 I found a lump doing a self exam. I went to my doctor and he too felt it which prompted him to send me to a breast cancer specialist. By the time I got to her...the lump was gone. I guess I was hoping that between the 1st and yesterday that is what would happen to this one. No such luck.

A little side note. When I first started doing self breast exams....I always wondered if I got a lump if I would be able to feel it. In fact...I highly doubted it. Apparently though...after years of doing so, you know immediately when something doesn't feel like it should. So don't scoff at self exams!!!!!!!

Added to all of this....I have an extremely creative mind.  Most writer/artistic types do. So now I am questioning everything. I have dealt with left side pain for several years. I even had a CT a couple of years ago and the doctor feels that is is muscle related (duh...I lift David all the time). Muscle relaxants do seem to help and yet my mind is questioning whether it is something worse. Possibly something related to the breast lump. I have known so many people who were fine and then gone because cancer was unknowingly growing inside them and spread. Ridiculous? Of course....well maybe....but I am alone with two kids and their future is what I have to worry about. They have already lost so much and Z has had more put on his plate since he was four years old than any kid should have to deal with. So yeah! I am a wreck...and a bit bewildered that I am not breaking land speed records to find the closest McDonald's. I guess I am just trying to face life head on and deal. A Big Mac will only make me fatter and....I will still have a breast lump. Why compound the issue?!

So....I know I am not the only one who has/is going/gone through this. I know many facebook friends and family members who have been right where I sit today...wondering and waiting and yes....fearing the worst. Some walked out of their doctors office in relief and others had a battle a head of them. All that I know though (other than my mom) are still here and fought their battles with grace and courage. I have no idea if I will be one of the ones crying with relief or one with a battle in front of me, but which ever way it goes....I am sure you all will hear every little detail. And let me thank you in advance for reading and commenting. In case you all didn't know all have become the support that I need and you have no idea just how much it is appreciated. And if you get a chance.....if you could keep my family in your prayers because Shriners is so important for David....we would surely appreciate it. Thank you all.

Monday, January 9, 2012

The Lies We Tell Ourselves (and others)

Honesty seems to be a running theme when anyone talks about self improvement. Possibly the reason is that when we aren't honest with ourselves....that is when things tend to spiral out of control. I have found that often, even the most honest of people can be in so much denial about something that they habitually lie to themselves. The lies we most often tell ourselves (and others too) often concern some sort of addiction or addictive behavior.

A perfect example of what I am referring to would be my mother. There was no more honest woman on the planet. She would rather have her tongue cut out than be dishonest about anything.........except her smoking. Back in the 1950's when mom took her first puff, cigarette smoking was not looked on as a vice. It was viewed as manly for men and elegant for women. A woman who smoked had a mystery about her. She was deemed very modern and sexy if she was seen holding a cigarette. Apparently lung killing smoke and ash tray breath were also sexy back then. Sadly even the medical industry didn't know or were in their own form of denial as nursing school was where my mom learned to smoke. When each of the nursing students did their psych rotation they were "forced" to smoke with the patients. It was believed that smoking relaxed the patients and kept them calmer. I guess then the nurses smoking with them kept them even calmer. At any rate....Mom said 26 girls (all non-smokers) started the rotation and when it was done...all but two were hooked. Yes folks....that was the medical field for you back then. And we all know what BS that the info they were given was. It would be interesting to know what percentage of those girls ended up with lung cancer. Mom did!

Once addicted though....smoking became a crutch for mom. Just like anyone with an addiction smoking was what she used to cope. When she divorced, when she and Dad fought after the divorce, when times where tight, when us kids acted up or when she was just alone.....cigarette smoking was how she handled life. And believe one has that kind of an addiction without a lot denial and self lying going on. My brother and I were both horrid asthmatics and common sense would tell you that it was exasperated by her smoking. She convinced herself though that it wasn't her smoke but pollen, grass and anything and everything else. Thus our asthma raged until we moved out. Magically our asthma symptoms resided. Mom's answer to that was that we simply had grown out of our asthma.

My brother and I literally spent years begging her to quit smoking. After my uncle died of lung cancer and I watched my aunt and cousins suffer I once again begged her to quit smoking. Mom took our pleas as us finding personal fault with her. She was NOT going to get lung cancer and we were trying to take away the only enjoyment she had in life. Yeah....coughing up phlegm everyday for 40 some years is nothing but pure enjoyment? 

It wasn't until they found Mom's uterine cancer and then her lungs collapsed after surgery that she was finally jolted into the reality of what she had done to herself. Once out of the hospital she quit cold turkey and never looked back. Later....she realized just how much in denial she had been believing that her four pack a day addiction was just a moderate problem. She had lied to herself and everyone else around her for years. It took almost dying and losing everything for her to realize that she really was addicted and even that realization was too little too late. She ultimately died because of her addiction.

My son sadly did not learn from his grandmothers mistakes. At 25 he is a heavy smoker and has been since he was 18. To compound this addiction....he is also addicted to pot. I hear the same type of self lies from him that I used to hear from my mother. Pot shouldn't be illegal. It is safer than alcohol. He only uses it to relax. There is no long term effects from smoking pot. I have heard it all and yet his life tells a different story.  He has no ambition and he will always choose cigarettes and pot over any one or anything in his life. I want to shake him and wake him up, but I know all too well that decades of pleading didn't work with my mom. The only thing that did was having reality hit her smack dab in the middle of the face. I just hope when it happens for is not too late. 

After thinking about all of this I ended up doing some major soul searching of my own. While I only smoked for about five minutes in my life (yeah...I thought I was cool) and I only smoked pot once (it made me sick as a dog), I too am not without my lies and addictions. My 

In my lifetime....I have lost and gained the same 10-15 lbs over and over again. I am short (5' 1 3/4") so five extra pounds sticks out like a sore thumb. In my late teens and twenties I yo-yoed with those pounds over and over again. In my early thirties I was thin......very thin and then after I met my husband and started having kids I was happy and my weight issues went to the back burner. My husband loved me (as much or as little of me as there was) and I stayed at a healthy weight . After my youngest was born prematurely and then my husband and mother died....healthy weight went out the window. Food became my comfort. I was dealing with loss and with my oldest sons antics (drinking, drugs, running off, sneaking out) and I was in over my head. So I did with food what Mom did with cigarettes and my son is doing with pot.....I started lying to myself. I refused to look in a full length mirror and I told myself that I needed the comfort. I was almost a recluse hiding from the world and not wanting to face the day to day realities that I was alone and doing everything all by myself....and if you listened to my oldest....doing it all VERY VERY wrong. It didn't help that at the same time I went through a total hysterectomy and was thrown into menopause about a decade too early. My thyroid was out of whack and I was using all these things as excuses for the fact that I couldn't put down the banana bread, ice cream, fast food, etc.

Now none of my children has ever called me fat. My father on the other hand has numerous times. Funny though...his insistence that I was fat happened when I was young and really wasn't fat at all. I have been fully aware of my addiction to food for some time. I have also been aware that my clothes size has also blossomed with my ever expanding waist. Still....knowing that I was gaining and that it could have ill effects on my health (open me up for cancer, heart disease, diabetes, stroke, etc) didn't keep the fries, the burgers and the shakes from finding their way to my mouth.  It wasn't until someone pointed out to me that my children had already lost one parent and didn't need to loose another that I really started admitting my own personal addiction. Yes...I have been lying to myself and in turn others about why I have gained for years, but the bottom line is.....I have and the only way to change the situation is to admit that I have gained and to take steps to quit denying and making excuses for my bad behavior. I have to find solace in something other than pizza  or sweets and stop putting food in my mouth as a knee jerk reaction to a bad day. I also have to get moving again.

Last year when I was working out....I was feeling so much better, but my love of exercise borders between slim and none. takes very little for me to throw in the towel or make excuses not to hit the gym. I think I also have an underlying desire to sabotage myself when I work out. I push myself to the very limit...often times causing me to hurt myself...thus giving me a reason to give up...thus making me feel like I need comfort.....thus causing me to find the nearest McDonalds. Yep...I am all about feeding the addiction.

So....after a long talk with myself I came to the conclusion that the only real failure here would be if I didn't keep trying. I know my weaknesses, my excuses and my sabotage points. I know that with the highs there will be lows and that some days.....every minute will be a battle to stay focused and on track. The important thing though is that I have decided to choose myself over my addiction. I choose having time to spend and time to live,  over time in the fast food line. I choose slow but steady exercise over my tv and computer and most of all.....I choose watching my kids grow, graduate, marry and have families of their own rather than an early death from some disease related to my unhealthy eating habits. Maybe if my mother had decided to choose herself or us kids over her addiction she might still be with us. Who knows?!

This is not a new years resolution....those rarely come to fruition. What this a choice to love myself and my kids more than I love food. No more lies!