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Date

June 18, 2009

Putting On the Brakes

I don’t want to make it seem like I am complaining about something great that I have been hoping for, but this post is about the weird/unsettling side of losing weight, which I don’t see written about very often.  At the risk of seeming complainy or ungrateful, I want to write about some of the more unnerving parts of weight loss.

Today I went through my closet (again) and tried on a bunch of clothes.  I have a fun party for one of my closest friends coming up this weekend, and I thought, YAY I can wear something cute! Remember my nifty Cleopatra dress? I just bought that in April. When I tried it on this morning, it hung on me like a loose sack. The armholes are huge and it just doesn’t look right anymore. The only way I can wear it is if I get it professionally altered, which is what I guess I am going to have to do. I know, maybe some of you are saying POOR BABY, I WISH I HAD YOUR PROBLEMS! but this was the first time in my weight loss that I have felt weird and unsettled. It made me feel sad and suddenly like everything was shifting and that I was somehow not holding on to my image, or something. It’s hard to explain.

I feel in a way like things are moving more quickly than my psyche can keep up with. It’s like every few weeks I am a different size and while on one hand this is very exciting, it’s also strange. Like the ground is made of jello.

After I tried on the dress, I went to the kitchen and ate a little leftover bowl of mac and cheese that my daughter made a few days ago. I have not eaten any mac and cheese since January- it was my one go-to comfort food, and it just has a tinge of danger for me. But in that moment I was feeling like I needed to be grounded in something familiar, and I thought, I need to put on the brakes.

Let me say right out. I am not “skinny” by any stretch. I’m not like falling into anorexia or anything. I’m just venturing into a physical territory where I have not been in probably 20 years and that is disorienting and strange. Like I’m in some sort of Alice in Wonderland funny mirror shapeshifting place.

I do think it is time for me to halt the loss and maintain for a while. Maybe a LONG while. I need to get used to this, and stay here for some time. I can’t be buying new clothes every four weeks.

(NOTE: I almost deleted this post. I don’t want people getting mad at me for a “problem” they WISH they had. But I’m going to keep it up.)

This reminds me of many writer friends of mine, published writers who get flak for expressing a hard time they might have in the publication process – it’s lonely and hard to be on book tour. There’s “too much” attention. They have to deal with book reviews or readers who might not like their book.

The thing is, with any success there also comes some kind of loss: a loss of identity that has been familiar for a very long time. For a long time, I have comfortably lived in the role of Overweight Person. (as well as Unpublished Novelist, but that’s a different story) Even though I didn’t like much about it, I was USED to it. I am not used to this. I feel like I am stepping into the big unknown – exciting but also terrifying on some level.

BTW, it was good to have that little foray into the mac and cheese. It gave me a stomach ache, and didn’t really help me feel any better. A good reminder.

Little Tidbits of This and That

Last night I had an absolutely delicious and beautiful lobster dinner. There’s a local restaurant featuring special lobster dinners for $20 on Tuesdays and I jumped at the chance, along with the other adults in my family. I ate all the accompanying buttery rice pilaf. There was a lot of butter on that table. Also had one bite of dessert. But no wine or other drinks this time. I think the butter was enough.

Today, I worked out twice. In the gym with my trainer in the morning (5 double lengths of monkey walk, 20 minutes of hard stairmaster, and some pull up thingies). Then an hour of outdoor class with a group (again with my trainer) in the evening. I ran more than half of it. Hills, hills, hills. It felt good.

I didn’t work out at all yesterday. So today had to happen. But I liked it a lot.

Tomorrow morning, more running with my 5k buddy.

Also: got more official stuff from The Company today. Turns out I am A-OK, officially, fine print, legal-wise, etc. And I got my official ID card. So it’s all proceeding as per the plan.

OH, and I did some more clothes shopping today. Remember my shopping spree back in April? Many of those clothes are too large now. Luckily, I still have tags on some and can return them. Other stuff is just big. I am constantly walking around, hiking up my pants. Today I woke up and it was ridiculously freezing out. I went to the one small department store in our neighborhood.  It has a lot of inexpensive polyester stuff with elastic waistbands, but occasionally some decent things hidden here and there. I felt desperate to get some WARM clothing because it is in the 50s here and all the new clothes I bought are summer wear. I ended up buying two pairs of pants: one in a size 6 (WHAT MEEEE???) and one size ten. They both fit me fine. Two different brands.  Funny that size 8 was too big in the one brand and too small in the other. Ha.  Then I bought a size L quilted vest that was ALMOST too small. Isn’t that weird? It is OK when I am upright, but when I am sitting I sort of have to suck it in like Scarlett OHara in her corset. Almost.

So, that was my day.

I finished it up by watching Top Chef Masters which I loved to bits. They had to create a dinner from LOST island ingredients (including Dharma Initiative canned food, ha!) so I was just giddy happy watching it. The Top Chef Masters is overall a LOT more fun to watch than regular TC (although I do miss Padma and Tom). The chefs are relaxed, they are collegial and respectful and they aren’t the least bit insecure or mean or bitchy. So I’m liking it a lot.

Good night now!

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