Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Why I Couldn’t Join a Weightloss Challenge

Two words: I'm Hungry.

No, really, about 5 hours ago all I wanted was a Burger King Original Chicken Sandwich with gobs of their 210 calorie mayonnaise oozing out from under the bun. That sounds disgusting, I know, but it's just so freakin' good!

I resisted the urge. I couldn't do it. I've worked out everyday for 2 weeks straight and I couldn't ruin it all for a slab of microwaved chicken covered in the world's unhealthiest mayo. Nope, I ordered a cheese burger with ketchup, mustard, and pickles instead, and at only 340 calories, it was a much healthier choice. Baby steps, I guess.

All in all I'm getting a little discouraged by the scale's unwillingness to budge anymore than 3 pounds lower, but I've learned a very valuable lesson: exercise makes me feel wonderful. I feel healthy, optimistic, and, wait for it...happy...all the time. I swear 2 weeks worth of positivity is a new record for me. Who knew that when Psychiatrist Number 4 recommended yoga as a cure for my depression he actually knew what he was talking about?

While the scale may not be moving much I am noticing very subtle changes in my body like the return of my quadriceps whose appearance went MIA about 6 years ago--I can actually see them again. Oh, and my butt is lifting, looking a little more round. I've practically had to beat my husband off with a stick on more than one occasion in these last couple of weeks. I haven't seen much of a change in the spare tire though, but I'm holding out hope that it will start deflating soon.

I guess in the big scheme of things being hungry and denying myself the food that I should have been swearing off all along is small potatoes. And whether or not I lose 3 pounds or 20 pounds doesn't really matter as long as I'm taking care of myself, being the healthiest I can be, and feeling more confident, which I do and I am.

Now if only Burger King would fall off the face of the Earth I might have a chance at reaching that 22 pound goal...19 more to go.

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Sunday Letters Vol. 5

Dear Kristin,

Today is your 21st birthday! Jon and I met you and a few of your friends down in the valley at midnight last night and we stood next to each other as you nursed a Long Island Iced Tea and we sipped a couple of warm beers. Jon and I debated on the way home as to what was worse; the shot the three of us had together that tasted like Sprite and tart liquor, or the seemingly heated Coors Light and Corona that felt like it was curdling everything in our bellies. I think the warm beer won as worst drink of the night, but we really didn't have much desire to complain. No, for the most part, we were too busy texting and calling people about having a drink less than 10 feet away from LeBron James! Dude had it going on even in his Yankees cap as he sipped a Vitamin Water at a bumping bar. Thanks for inviting us, and for giving us a great story to tell when we go back to work tomorrow.

Boy, you and I sure have come a long way, haven't we? How often do two sisters fight so much that their grandmother, who lives three states over and visits once or twice a year, begins all of her check-in phone conversations by asking "How are Katie and Kristin getting along?" Life in our house was an all out war between you and I. I wanted privacy, you wanted attention, we both knew which buttons to push at just the right moment to make the other one fly off the deep end. You had the advantage though, because I was older and I should have known better, blah, blah, blah…you could have suffocated me in my sleep and Mom and Dad would have still blamed me, because I didn't love you enough or something equally absurd.

I can't even begin to tell you how happy I am that the constant bickering is over. Everyone said we would grow out of it, but to be completely honest, I had some serious doubts we would ever get along. I mean, c'mon, when you were 6-years-old you took the screen out of our bedroom window and threw all of my stuff out into the rain. You painted my bed and dresser with bright red nail polish. I still don't know how I ever forgave you.

A turning point came for me one day when you were able to look at Jon and say, "I hate you because you took my best friend away." You must have been 11 or 12 at the time, and the way you said it, as if you truly believed that we had ever been friends, let alone best friends, almost knocked me off of my feet. All those years I spent despising you, ridiculing you, pushing you away, and you still thought we were friends. It was at that point that I decided to let you in a little at a time, and we've been going strong ever since. I still cry whenever I come across a picture you drew for me, or an award you made for me, proclaiming me as The World's Best Big Sister, because I was never that kind to you.

That being said, Thank You, Kristin, for sticking around long enough to become one of my best friends--for being one of the very few people who I feel completely comfortable around, and for not judging me. Thank you for honoring Jon and I as Godparents to Isaiah, and of course, thanks for inviting us to that bar last night where we got stare at the back of LeBron James' head.

Happy Birthday!

Your big sis,


Friday, June 6, 2008

Sunday? Letters Vol. 4

Dear Rob,

If I didn't know you I would be tempted to apologize to you since this letter was supposed to have been written and posted a week ago, but since I do know you, I know that the existence of this letter will only annoy or embarrass you for bringing unwanted attention your way, so I'll save myself an apology. Actually, I can see it now…should this letter ever be known to you your eyes will slowly roll back in to your head and a soft "psscht" will escape from between your teeth just for knowing that I'm writing about you without your permission. This knowledge has plagued me all week as I wrote drafts one, two, three, and four of this letter, but I've finally come to the conclusion that, you know what? I'm on an important mission to write letters to those who have made a big impact on my life, and whether you like it or not, you've made one of the biggest impressions on me, so you'll just have to accept my sign of appreciation the only way I know how to show it, and let me go with the flow.

I have this tiny notebook--I think it used to be red but it has turned to more of a burnt orange color with age. It's covered in pictures of white roses and the shiny smiley face stickers that were so popular back in 8th grade. The notebook was given to me as a Christmas gift from my Sunday School instructor and I chose to use it as a "Book of My Thoughts and Opinions"--that's a direct quote from one of the first few pages. I wrote that I didn't want to use the terms diary or journal because everyone else does that and I wanted to be different--that was so like me back in the 90s', wasn't it? Anyway, it was my first attempt at writing anything autobiographical outside of school, my first "journal", and you played both the protagonist and antagonist in the second journal entry I ever wrote.

I won't rehash all of the painful details but I will say it was about a certain night back in February of 1996 when you obviously found yourself in a very dark and lonely hole without any hope of finding your way out, and so you took the only road that appeared plausible at the time. And the words I used to describe that particular night were obviously those of a naive 14-year-old girl who hadn't yet experienced true despair or hopelessness, but however inexperienced or caddy my words may have been, one thing was made very clear in my page and a half entry--I loved you immensely, and I was scared out of my wits that you were going to leave me alone in this tough world that I couldn't even begin to know how to navigate. Television sitcoms promised me that high school would be an exciting adventure full of boys, dances, football games, and driver's licenses, and your two week stint in the hospital was reason for me to not believe everything I saw on TV.

I overheard you and Mom talking one night, many years ago, debating whether or not watching you suffer through high school was the culprit for my own anxiety, and truth be told, I still don't know if my depression was brought on by a very timely chemical imbalance or if that particular night in February is guilty of ripping the rose-colored glasses from my eyes and showing me the world for what it really is. Either way, whatever happened to me, whatever darkness took over the both of us in our teenage years, I am thankful for it. It is those years, albeit trying and uncomfortable, that turned me into the thoughtful, observant, sensible woman that I am today. If I'd had it easy in high school there's a good possibility that I never would have found the means of dipping into my emotions and the desire to write them down. I can't even think, don't want to think, about the person I would be without the ability or drive to express myself on paper. It's too big a part of me to even fathom my life without writing.

It's been over 12 years since I wrote my first "Thoughts and Opinions" entry, and believe it or not, you're up there with Mom and Jon for most commonly used character. You've always been someone for me to look up to, someone who is so down-to-earth, intelligent, accepting, who has incredible taste in music, and someone who is so laidback that everyone loves to be around you. You are sarcastic, funny, wise beyond your years, and so smart that you can do something I'll never be able to do--think on your feet. You are the epitome of cool without even realizing it, which makes you even more cool.

I went in search of a husband who held all of your amazing qualities and you know what I discovered? You are one of a kind. So, I had to settle for the next best thing--a friend of yours. Give yourself credit where credit is deserved, and for God's sake, let yourself be loved.

Your sister,