My Eats

How "The Accidental Fat Chick" Hatched...

Welcome to The Accidental Fat Chick's new online home!

During the summer 0f 2008, I woke up one morning with a drive to live a healthy lifestyle. Since then, I've made many changes and lost nearly 50 pounds. Many of my friends and family members have come to me, asking about what I'm doing & how I'm doing it. While I certainly would never claim to be an expert, I'm happy to share what I've learned along the way.

So after careful thought... "The Accidental Fat Chick" has hatched... with the hope of helping at least one person and to be the accountability I need to finish what I started. :)

Thank you for visiting!!

Friday, October 15, 2010

Kids & Food

It seems there has been a flurry of chatter in blogland about kids & diet talk, etc. This is a post I've been working on all week - I swear something must be in the air - and thinking about much longer.


A few weeks ago, I was at dinner with a friend, his two daughters and The Boy One. The oldest girl is the same age as The Boy One (12) & is very nearly my size. So, at dinner she ordered this HUGE platter meal - literally enough food to feed me for an entire day - and proceeded to eat the entire thing! Upon completion of the meal (er, feast), she looks at The Boy One and says, "Look how much food I just ate!!!" There was such a look of satisfaction on her face & glee in her voice. Her joy over this "feat" made me sick to my stomach. It was all I could do to bite my tongue. I felt just sad for her... sad that she thinks eating like that is something to be proud of... sad that her father apparently knows very little about nutrition and what it means to eat healthfully.

Since that day, I have paid careful attention when dining out. The occurrence with her really opened my eyes... but it is far from isolated. It seems nearly every time I dine out, I see/hear children being praised for the amount of food they eat and/or chastised if they dare to leave food on their plate. In one instance, I actually heard a mother tell her child, "I'm paying for that meal and we are not leaving here til you eat every bite." And omg, a trip to the buffet (where I go only for sushi) about had me wanting to cry for the children being allowed to go back for three and four plates of food.

Here in blogland, I have read multiple accounts of people who do things like preparing two meals each night - one healthy meal for themselves and then the "usual" stuff for their kids/spouses, purchase school lunches for their children while packing a healthy lunch for themselves, etc.

All of this has gotten me to thinking A LOT about kids & food. While I would NEVER encourage my child or any other to "diet," I do think we have a responsibility to teach children the importance of eating healthy, nutritious foods.

While I understand the temptation to feed kids a different set of food from what we eat when we are trying to lose weight, I have to be honest and say its not something I agree with doing.

How many of us site how important our children are & wanting to be more actively involved with them as a reason for wanting to lose weight/get healthy? If that is true, why would we want to continue feeding our children foods that set them up to have the same struggles with food that we do? Why would we want to continue feeding our children foods that will put them at an increased risk of high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, maybe even cancer? If we recognize these foods are not healthy for us to be eating, why on earth would we feel comfortable feeding these foods to our children?

How many of use grew up in homes with an overweight parent (or two) and learned the eating/activity habits that lead us to becoming overweight adults? Its no secret kids learn by example and (especially the little ones) want to mimic the adults they look up to in life. If we are setting a good example, by eating healthy foods, why not take it one step further and feed the whole family the same healthy foods?

In our home, we all eat the same foods. That's not to say we don't have treats... but they are treats we ALL indulge in. One day a week, The Boy One & I have ice cream after his therapy session. On weekdays, we all eat a healthy breakfast - for The Boy One its a Cheerios type cereal with low fat yogurt. Then on weekends, he is allowed his choice of sugary cereals, in a reasonable portion. On our "payday" dinners, we all eat whatever looks appealing on the menu and I don't worry about what I'm eating because I know its just one meal. While things like cookies & chips don't typically come in the house, we all enjoy them as an occasional part of life... not the daily norm. The Boy One knows candy is something we have once in a awhile - because it tastes good - but that it is not "real food" to eat on a regular basis. The Boy One (and The Husband when he's here) happily eat the healthy recipes I prepare... they are tasty & honestly I don't think they even realize they are eating "healthy food." For me, this is part of the "doing it in a way I can sustain for the rest of my life" approach. It only makes sense to teach him to eat, now, in a way that he can eat for his whole life to maintain his health & wellness.

This is the approach I have taken with him since he was small & it works for us. A few years ago, he had a beloved uncle pass away after battling cancer & congestive heart failure. In the process of explaining the illness to him... we told The Boy One gently, but honestly, that part of what contributed to his uncle becoming ill was his unhealthy diet, drinking alcohol excessively, and smoking. That put the first seed in his head that he needed to take care of himself. Today, he watches his Grandma's health deteriorate and when he asks why she is sick... I continue to be honest with him. He knows that while people are sometimes predisposed to illnesses, that there are ways you can take care of yourself to help stay healthy. And yes, despite his "differences" he really does know and understand these concepts. Am I burdening him in some way by being so open and honest about these things with him? I hope not. I believe with my whole heart it is important to be honest with him & not beat around the bush when it comes to matters of illness & what can be done to minimize the risks.

For me, it is critically important to help our children learn to eat in a healthy manner, NOW when they are young, so that it becomes a life long habit... not something they struggle to learn as they reach adulthood. Because of that I am going to focus most of my healthy recipe tests on meals & snacks that are kid friendly. I'm guessing this will involve some recipe "makeovers" and some brand new creations. We will let The Boy One be the "kid taste tester" and I will share our findings.

For those of you that take this approach or a similar one, what are some of your kids' favorite "healthy" meals?

And for those of you who feed your kids a different "diet" from yourself, I'm genuinely curious as to why you do this.

Please know I'm not trying to attack anyone for the way they choose to feed their children. I am merely burdened with fear over what America - at large - is doing to our children (often without even realizing it). It makes me sad to see a generation of children growing up on Happy Meals & cardboard pizza... especially when there are so many ways to make kid-friendly healthy meals.

I keep coming back to this one thought...

If we love ourselves enough to fuel our bodies with nutrious foods on a regular basis... shouldn't we love our children enough to do that and more?

Thursday, October 14, 2010

A Blank Screen

For the last hour I have sat staring at a blank computer screen... debating what to write about. I have several posts in the works, but none that feel like they fit where I am this moment. Today I feel like a fraud. My actions have been the classic example of saying one thing and doing something else entirely.

Food today was anti-healthy at each and every turn - chips & salsa, McDonalds and pasta salad. There is no good reason for this day of awful eating. Truthfully, Wednesdays are always crazy with kids group & this day is much like all of my Wednesdays were in the past. Last year, I had done a pretty good job of making it a priority to take healthy meals with me on Wednesday nights... this fall I've yet to get back in the habit. That needs to change IMMEDIATELY!

Exercise did not happen. Yes, I could still pop in a video or get the Wii going and get in something that would technically count. But, I'm exhausted - emotionally and physically - and just don't have it in me right now.

One important thing did happen today though. I wrote Draz earlier, telling her that I wasn't planning to blog about it, but I've changed my mind... because quite honestly I'm proud of myself and feel like a major step toward standing up for myself in life was taken. Today, I took steps to end the friendship with the "friend" I wrote about a few days ago. After much thought, I realized that the emotional damage that would continue to be done to my heart if I attempted to patch things up just wasn't worth any perceived benefit. So... this morning I set about the necessary tasks... phone number changed, email sent stating exactly why I can't continue the friendship, deleted & blocked on facebook. All of that may seem extreme to you, but to me its what has to happen. If I didn't take such serious steps, she would keep pushing to "fix" things and eventually I would give in. It is hard to thing of this person no longer being a part of my life, but I know all in all... Its better this way...

As I was taking each of these steps a feeling of freedom & satisfaction swept through me... like a weight was lifting off my shoulders and stress was leaving my body. I felt empowered. Never before in my life have I stood up for myself in such a concrete, definitive way! While a little part of me was sad to be ending such a long friendship this way, I was mostly relieved to be resolving the situation... and to be resolving it on my terms! To do it without the opportunity to be browbeaten into changing my mind! It was empowering!!!

The Boy One is done with school for the week thanks to parent-teacher conferences. Tomorrow we will be visiting my gym together. He is old enough to be added to my membership. If he is comfortable there, I can start bringing him with me part of the time. That will help me get more workout time in, so I'm hopeful. Besides, he is wanting to exercise and has been upset that he isn't getting a full PE period at school this year.

Bedtime for me... early tonight. LOL

PS- This is my first post from my brand new laptop. HP really went above & beyond in replacing my broken one. Plus, they refunded the price of the extended warranty I purchased. I'm truly, oddly, impressed with them right now. :)

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Scale Day & Blog Business

Tuesday brought my first scale day since I started the "Out with a Bang!" Plan. I wasn't sure what to expect... yeah I actually got my tush moving again... but in all honesty my food was HORRIBLE over the past few days.

197 lbs... for a one pound loss. I'm good with that! This week will be even better!!

My things to work on for "Out with a Bang!" this week are my water intake (I've been getting more than I was, but still not as much as I should) and tracking my food. I've been writing my food in my little green book, but NOT getting it transferred here or tracking calories. So I need to step up the efforts there.


I spent a copious amount of my Tuesday doing some blog business. I was browsing the blogs I followed & realized I had a whole list I had never gotten a chance to add - some of my lovely BOOBs & a lot of people who recently started following me (and sadly some who have followed for a long time). I feel bad its taken me so long to a chance to do this, hopefully its a forgivable offense, lol. I tried to get everyone, but if I missed someone please please let me know. My goal is to get my blog roll updated in the next couple of days too. :)

The last few weeks I have been feeling like my blog is in need of a "face lift." I want it to have an identity that is a little more me... so that's something I hope to get to work on SOON.


Before I go crawl in bed to catch a few hours of sleep, I want to thank everyone who commented on my previous post. Each of you is proof that REAL friends exist everywhere. You don't have to physically meet someone to be a true friend to them. All of your kind comments meant so much to me... more than you will likely ever know. I am beyond grateful for the gift of friendship I have found here in blogland!

Hope Wednesday is a wonderful day for each and every one of you!


Monday, October 11, 2010

What Kind of Friend Are You?

Yesterday, Dawn over at Fixing Myself Thinner, wrote a single sentence that sums up the way I view life & my relationships with people - in summary - that she gives to others (in blogland) what she would like to receive in return. In other words, treating people the way you want to be treated. That's me. That's what I do.

She went on to say that she had to "lose some of the things that would drive her to eat." One of those things being a people pleaser. While I don't think being a "people pleaser" necessarily drives me to eat, as I have recently mentioned, I know it has hindered my healthful efforts.

I hope she doesn't mind me paraphrasing her here... but her post was exactly what I needed to read after the events of Saturday. I needed to see that I'm not alone in the way I think and treat people... or in what I hope to receive in return. I needed to see - through someone else's success - that its okay to make changes in my relationships with people for my own benefit. I needed her words!

As you probably know, I've been observing and reevaluating a lot of my relationships since returning home from Chicago. I'm reaching the limits of tolerating one-sided friendships. Saturday was a boiling point with one such friendship. After months of being there for this friend - with my time, resources & wallet - she more or less indicated that she is not comfortable coming to my house (because she doesn't have her things here & I have different rules for kids in my house)... that if I want to hang out I will have to do 100% of the traveling. Lame reasons if you ask me & I couldn't take it any more. I pretty much told her that if that's how its going to be then she can expect not to be seeing me or having my help from now on. While I may be willing to do the majority of the visiting - because of logistics - I am not up for it being my sole responsibility.

This led to her attacking me for my decision to stay here with The Husband. She doesn't know of the posts I've written here on the matter & how torn I am about what the "right" thing is. She knows that I am here still - in part - because staying allows me to be available to The Boy One in a way I wouldn't be able to if I had to work to support us. She knows what a difference it made in his functioning when I did the temporary job in the Spring & that it took weeks for him to "recover" from it. She knows that I have several serious health concerns going on right now & having medical/dental coverage is critical for me with those things. Still... knowing all of this she told me "your reasons for staying are bullshit reasons & you deserve what you get!"

Pretty much I felt like she was saying my LIFE is not a good reason to stay. Realizing that my very life could be of such little consequence to someone I have considered a dear friend for years was soul crushing. To the point where I can understand a person who wants a physical pain to match their emotional pain.

Thinking about her & our friendship since this conversation, I realized something big. One of those things you blind yourself to because if you see it you have to deal with it. She is a classic example of words vs. actions. The type of person who says all the right things, but rarely backs up what she says without her actions. I don't know why it took me so long to open my eyes and see it. At this point, I don't know what will become of our "friendship," but for now I know that have to severely distance myself from this person. To do anything else would be pouring salt in the gaping wound her thoughtlessness created.

Since I'm on the friend topic, I want to share one more thing. When I was preparing for the trip to Chicago, my Mom made the comment about how weird it was to take such a trip to meet people that weren't "real" friends. I keep thinking about that statement in light of what happened with my "friend" over the weekend. To me a real friend is someone who supports, encourages, loves and wants the best for you. In a very REAL way, all of you here in blogland are my "real" friends. We support, encourage & want the best for each other... in my mind it doesn't get much more REAL than that. It doesn't matter that I haven't met many of you... I still think of you as friends in every sense of the word.

So, to my REAL FRIENDS in blogland... thank you for your love, support & encouragement. I hope that I can be the friend to you that you have been to me.

Solitude Has Its Place...

After yesterday's emotional trauma, I woke up knowing I needed some time for myself. I was planning on a visit to the gym, but when I saw the gorgeous blue skies I knew there was no way I could be stuck inside for a workout. Considering it is quickly headed toward mid-October, days like this are going to be few & far between so being the logical person that I am it made sense to head to one of my favorite places on the island.

This place has miles of trails - some where you feel like you're "lost" deep within the forest, some that parallel the water line & some that do both... like the ones I chose today. It starts out a little like this...

A nice, level tree lined path with all sorts of vegetation on either side. There were hundreds of mushrooms through this area... no clue if they were the edible kind or not.

Then you round the bend to find yourself right on the edge of this high bluff & have this gorgeous view. One could fall over the edge from gaping at the view if they weren't careful.

After walking that trail, which loops around, I decided to go to the lower section... which leads you to this...

Now, I've stood at this point before... looked up the incredibly steep side of the bluff and thought there was no way that was ever going to happen. It's steep, all dirt, and there is nothing to grab if you lose your footing. No thank you... too dangerous for my blood. I kind of like my limbs all intact... thank you very much.

Well... today was different. I hesitated only a moment before deciding to go for it! I don't know what came over me - maybe it was the "screw it all" mood I'm in after yesterday - whatever it was I charged straight ahead.

What you can't see in the picture & don't realize until you're part way up is that the upward climb continues for a good 20-30 feet beyond what you can see in the picture. Once I started, I knew there was no stopping and no turning back. Up is the only way to go... unless you want to slide down on your butt (that MIGHT work). Despite going at a snail's pace in a couple of spots, I NEVER once stopped moving. No breaks all the way to the top!

Here I am - at the top - feeling accomplished in a way I haven't for quite some time.

I took a couple minute breather before continuing on - during which I posted on facebook that I was dead and asked people to attend my funeral. I typed it in there jokingly... but you know the more I've thought about it... there is actually some truth to it. The "me" that has so many times looked at that exact bluff (and other huge physical obstacles) and immediately written them off as too difficult or made excuses for not being able to do them is dead and gone. In this area of my life, I'm not afraid to take on new challenges anymore. I may not do things as fast or with the skill of another person... but I can do them and feel good for my efforts. That said... let's have a PARTY instead of a funeral. :)

After my breather, I took the trail one mile in the other direction. This part of the trail starts out right along the edge of the bluff (and it was windy, unlike the other side) and then winds up and down through foresty areas. There were parts where it was so steep you had to run down the trail to keep from falling, muddy parts, rocky parts, parts where I was sure a bear might jump out at me. Then it opened to the gorgeous beach area... where I veered off the trail and sat on a log for a good 20 minutes... letting the sea spray hit me in the face... watching the waves roll in.

All in all, I ended my walk (okay more of a hike) at 3 miles. I could have kept going but the sun was sinking in the sky and by the end I really was getting nervous about animals in the woods.

For me, sometimes solitude & time alone with my thoughts is a good thing; other times its a bad thing. Today it was a good thing. It reaffirmed that this is the life I want. A life where I can get out and tackle whatever physical endeavor I choose - without worrying about my size, my health, or my emotions hindering me. And, anyone who truly loves me will support me and encourage me to keep on keeping on with it!

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Short n Sweet

That's what the bartender at our local Applebee's is and that's what this post is gonna be. It was a very long long, very emotional day. Lots of wounds opened up with the feeling of salt being poured in them... nothing I feel up to writing about now.

On the bright side, my BFF drug me out to dinner at Applebee's and our favorite bartender was there. This girl can make drinks like nobody's business. If we'd had her in Chicago with us... oh I don't even wanna think about that. Small NSV, sort of, I managed to nurse a single margarita... even with her there. Usually its a two drink minimum if she's there... just cuz she isn't there so often anymore & we don't go as often as we used to. So yeah... one drink with her there to mix em is an accomplishment... though I suspect my mama would argue the point. :)

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Chicago Keeps Giving!

Chicago keeps giving AND feeding my addiction!

Yesterday's trip to the mailbox packed one very welcome little surprise. Sifting through the mail I caught sight of this envelope.

At first glance I thought it was an invitation I'm expecting... then I noticed it was sent from Chicago. Figuring it was somehow related to BOOBs, I set it at the bottom of the pile... save the best for last and all.

So, after sorting all of the CRAPOLA, I settled in with my little envelope. Turning it over, I saw it was from the Coach store... the one that I visited with Maria... the one where I indulged in some fabulous new sunglasses and a ring set. Opening it I found this...

One handwritten note, in which the associate actually remembered details about our visit (not just the merchandise logged into their computer system) AND one $50 gift card to use at a Coach retail store here!!!! OMG, this is seriously the best piece of mail I have received in a VERY long time!!! Now I have an excuse to visit the Coach store and shop a little more!

Maria allowed me to go smell the air in the Coach store... I fed my addiction... I fed the addiction of a certain Coach lover that we all know & love... and now Coach is feeding my addiction. Its a big circle of Coach love I tell ya! :)

Today was pretty good for food and activity.

Ten miles on the wuss bike at the gym. Then, I came home and mowed the backyard... which took forever. Mowing the yard is to me what taking a bath is to some kids... I hate the idea, but once I get started I actually enjoy it. Needless to say, it had been way too long since I last tackled it and the grass was TALL. Even using the self-propelled feature (I usually don't use it), there were sections of grass that were very hard to push through. Then there's the monster tree out there that has decided to give birth to triplets if not more. It was a workout in itself!

Between the gym and the backyard workout I had this yummy salad for lunch.

Spinach, spicy sprouts, peas, mushrooms, tomatoes (from my backyard), shrimp & feta with Caesar spritz for dressing. YUMMY!!!!
I also spent time cutting chicken breasts into three and four ounce portions... so no excuses for not eating lean protein for quite some time... 12 pounds worth should last awhile... especially when The Boy One is still refusing to eat chicken because it comes from chicken. :)
Two NSVs today... one health related and one life related. Health related: I forgot my post-workout snack when I went to the gym today & I managed to resist the call (errr smell) of Starbucks when I was done. Life related: I made today about me, The Boy One and my home... it felt strange, but good in a way too! The yard is mostly done, we had good food together and enjoyed movie time together before he went to bed. He loves the Home Alone movies & I love to watch him be amused by them. It was a good evening.
Hope everyone has a great weekend!

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Out with a Bang!

After weeks of floundering & half-hearted discussion of getting my butt in gear, I finally have a plan in place... one that started today... and my plan is to send 2010 "Out with a Bang!" Something about there being less than eight weeks left of deployment and well under 90 days left in the calendar year signals to me that I must take action now.

Do I feel ready to take on a challenging regimen? Not in the slightest! Is my heart fully in it? It wants to be, but if I'm being honest... no its not! Does that set me up for failure before I even fully begin? I hope not. My shrink told me a year ago when I was so depressed I couldn't do anything more productive than play Facebook games that sometimes you just have to start doing to feel better. So that's what I'm gonna do... the plan is made and I'm just gonna do it... whether I feel like it or not. Because it is for me and it will be good for me... and because I deserve to put myself first. That putting myself first thing is still a foreign concept in my mind. I feel guilty for doing it, guilty for shutting myself down... but I think I would end up feeling more guilty if i didn't do it and do it NOW!

Here's the "Out with a Bang!" plan:

  1. Drink buckets of water daily (maybe not buckets, but at least 64oz.)

  2. Blog daily

  3. Track food daily

  4. Try three new healthy recipes each week

  5. Exercise daily - to include completing "Around the World" gym requirements

You will notice in there that there is nothing about eating "healthy" or limiting calories. While I will be monitoring both, I will not be obsessing over it or chastising myself if I end up in restaurants frequently. Over the last several months, I am certain it has been my lack of exercise that has hurt me... so that will be my primary focus.

Doing "Around the World" gym requirements will force me back into a solid fitness routine. Granted I will have an extra forty days beyond what the gym allots during the challenge... but considering what an infrequent gym visitor I have become & the two weeks I will likely be gone around the holidays, I'm pretty sure it will be challenging enough as is. :)

For the sake of being able to measure results, I did a Thursday morning scale visit and measurements:

  • 198 pounds (ugh... but still down a tiny bit from the start of deployment)

  • Waist - 38 1/2"

  • Hips - 47"

  • Chest - 42"

  • Thigh - 26 1/4"

  • Calf - 19"

  • Arm - 16 1/2"

Scale day is going to remain Tuesday. I plan to check measurements for progress at about the middle of November and then again at the end of the year.

The only thing I haven't figured out fully is rewards... and its no secret I thrive on rewards. They will be figured out & posted by the end of the weekend... and chances are they will include jewelry and/or handbags, lol.

So that's it... my plan to send 2010 "Out with a Bang!"

What are you going to do to finish 2010 strong???

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

87 Days & Accountability

Its official! Its "me first" time... and I'm going to stick to it no matter how foreign it feels.

I have to.

For ME.

For The Boy One.

For my health.

For my sense of well-being.

For my sanity.

For my personal happiness.

This decision - coupled with Draz's counting 87 days until the end of the year - means that this girl has some serious planning to do... and quickly!

I was thinking last night that there are about eight weeks of deployment left and I should make some sort of major effort over those eight weeks. But, Mama Pimp is Mama Pimp for a reason and she makes some very wise points about finishing the year strong and getting through the holidays... so yeah I'm liking her 87 days better than the eight week plan. :)

I don't know exactly what that plan is going to look like yet... but I'm working on it (quickly) and I have ideas galore. However, after not being able to manage my time and do my "Deployment Challenge" as I had planned I want to make sure I don't overwhelm myself with something that's going to be unrealistic... don't like failing myself that way...

Another realization that struck me last night... with The Husband gone & being essentially alone so much of the time... I have NO true accountability for what I eat or how active I am. No one knows if I sit here and eat a diet of frozen dinners and pastries. No one knows if I go to the gym or walk around the block. Unless I blog about it... NO ONE KNOWS!

I must have accountability. So... I'm going to make some changes to my blog... include more tickers and such to have more accountability for what I'm doing here in blog-land. I'm also going to make a more consistent effort to blog daily... regardless of how busy I am (which should be a lot less since I will be sticking to "me first). And, last but not least... I'm going to renew my effort to report my food intake on the "My Eats" tab. Perhaps I will even get all crazy and add an "Activity" tab up there too, lol.

Smile of the week so far (not sure if I shared this already or not): The Boy One informed me a couple days ago that he can't eat chicken anymore. I asked him why and his response: "Chicken comes from chickens and that's mean Mom!" He was giving me this look of how could you be so cruel as to eat those poor little birdies, lol. Then when I was buying chicken at the grocery store tonight, he was telling me that he doesn't want to eat chicken. He is so goofy sometimes... :)

Sleepy time for me... Hope everyone has a great Wednesday!

Monday, October 4, 2010

Gaining Perspective

Before I get to the heart of the matter, let me say a quick word about Chicago & the BOOBs... it was AMAZING!!! I'm not gonna write a book about it at this point (seems kind of redundant after reading what everyone else wrote). But I did have a wonderful time meeting everyone and seeing a new city. Draz summed it up well with "life-changing," I know I will never be the same.
Fellow BOOBs that I have added on Facebook, please remember no one there knows about this blog (except all of you lol). And BOOBs I haven't added, feel free to add me... I've been trying to find everyone. :)

Do you ever feel like you need someone to smack you up side the head and point out all of the things that should be obvious, but aren't? Okay more like things that are obvious, but you don't want to see them.

That has been me for a few weeks now... needing someone to give me a reality check. And guess what... I gave myself one! Its no secret to anyone that I've been majorly down in the dumps. Putting on a (semi)happy face for Chicago was a bigger challenge than you can imagine. Coming home, I knew it was time to really figure out what is going on with me... what is making me so sad all the time... because how can I ever expect anything to change if I don't know the cause?

For the last week, I have chosen to go with the flow and quietly observe the people in my life... I mean who they REALLY are... what their ACTIONS say vs. the WORDS that come from their mouths. The vast difference in those two things and how they affect my moods has been really eye-opening.

This is the thing about me... I am the type of person that fully commits to relationships (of all types)... if I am in your life its 100%, NOT just when its convenient for me. When I make plans with you or agree to do something for you, nothing short of being near death with prevent me from doing it. Big or small - it doesn't matter - I'm gonna keep my word regardless of how inconvenient it may be to me personally. And I'm going to do it with a cheerful heart because that's how I am. I am also the type of person that pays attention to the wants and needs of others... if I'm out somewhere and see something I know someone needs/wants I will happily get it for them if I can... just because I care. Not always - but often - you will find my shopping cart filled with things for a variety of different people in my life. Again... its just how I am.

Sadly, I think I'm growing selfish. I feel like I want my turn - for someone to value me and my presence in their life the way I value them in mine. For someone to go that extra mile for me, even when its not convenient. Not all the time... just once in a while... so I know I matter to someone beyond what I have to offer them. And the thing is, I've realized most of the people in my life talk a really good game, but have very poor follow through (assuming the intent was ever truly there to begin with). It makes me sad to think how one sided things have become with certain people. I feel like I need equality... which it seems means to stop "doing" so much for other people... which feels selfish and totally NOT me. Or, alternatively, separating myself from people that primarily TAKE, TAKE, TAKE. I don't know what the solution is... but at least I have identified this as a major source of my sadness and my feelings of being unworthy lately. That's a start...

Honestly, I think that is probably one of the biggest issue for me right now... so much seems to stem from it. Here I am so busy doing for other people that I have completely slacked off on my house, home projects, hobbies, and most sadly... taking care of myself and my health. Everything related to me and my personal well-being seems to have taken a backseat to caring for and doing for others. Even if its selfish and changes who I am in some way that has to STOP! I can't be so wrapped up in other people that I lose myself and what matters to me... especially when those other people are the way they are.

Maybe the solution is this... to plan my life & my time to take care of me (and The Boy One of course) and only allow other people to fill the space I have left over. I suppose there is a happy medium somewhere, but right now I feel so burned out on "being there" and getting little to nothing in return I don't even want to think about a compromise. That's so not me, it sounds foreign to even think it aloud, much less type it. Is that terribly selfish of me? Does that make me a bad person?

Happy news... I drug my tush to the gym this afternoon and lived to tell about it. Seriously sad how long it had been since my last gym visit! I hopped right on the StairMaster and did 50 floors... I felt like I could have kept going, but didn't want to overdo it on my first day back. Wrapped things up with 30 minutes on a wuss bike. My body is definitely telling me that I've spent way too long out of the gym... though not as bad as I thought it might be.

More happy news from the gym... they finally have the plaque up for the Around the World Challenge! It lists the names of the people that completed the entire challenge this year... five names I believe... including mine, followed by that of my BFF! :)

And now I've just remembered the trash cans are still at the curb... I'd better drag them in before the housing Nazis attack, lol.