In the beginning..

There was just me...
Big ole fat me...
in about 2005 I was at the bottom.
Mentally, physically and emotionally.
Old readers know this.
New readers may, if they were
A.) incredibly ambitious and read the whole blog
B.) mind readers

I was going through my husband's third and eventually fourth deployment to Iraq.
I had been alone for a long time. I was homeschooling, i had no breaks of any kind really.
I had no real support system here...I had one friend but you can't just dump all this crap on one person.
I had no family close by and no one to really, really talk to.
I found out my brother had a progressive terminal illness ( he is still alive) and to top it all off I miscarried.
So, two months after the miscarriage I enrolled my oldest daughter in a self defense class.
For discipline, because I simply didn't have the energy to correct her anymore.
And I found myself watching her instructor with this question foremost in my mind.
"Why is he so D*mn happy?"

I felt dead inside.
No joy, no pain, no sorrow.
Just "i have to get up, and do what I should and go to bed'
My only joy was food.
after the miscarriage I felt myself slip even further away.
I couldn't even respond correctly to my kids.
And since I had to go three times a week to this class and sit and watch this dude...
There was that nagging question..
Where did he get all that energy?
Why was he so happy?
Why was he so helpful?
Then one day I got it.
He was PASSIONATE about what he was doing!
I mean, sold out to it.
All in.
And I thought.
What do I have in my life that I am PASSIONATE ABOUT?
I loved my kids.
But at that point everything in my life felt like duty.
In fact, I couldn't even remember what it felt like.

And I realized that I wanted that.
I wanted to feel passionate about something.
That was it...that was the spark.
But once I realized that I wanted to feel something.
That I wanted to feel Excited, happy and passionate.
I realized that I had set my WHOLE LIFE UP TO BE DUTY.
That the map I had created, the rules I had set up for both myself and others...my very principles were what was causing me to be sucked dry.
Sure there were a lot of culprits.
But the truth was...it was how I had set up and constructed my reality that was the root of my problem.
Here are some personal truths that can throw a wrench in your gears.

1.) I am responsible for my spouses happiness.
2.) A mother should put herself last.
3.) Don't be a burden, be a blessing.
4.) when your work is done, then you can play.
5.) I must not make others uncomfortable with my wants.

These look good on the surface but underneath can cause some SERIOUS ISSUES.
And quite frankly, these 'truths' were rooted in past trauma. So to even get to what my truths are (because I couldn't identify them when I started) I had to name them, and then trace them back to the roots of where they came from. Then dig them up, hold them to the light and decide if they were real diamonds or just big chunks of chicken crap.
Many of these were truths I stumbled over before I lost the weight, and some AS I lost the weight. These were 'truths' that were much more deeply buried..truths I didn't even know I lived by.
The biggest truth and the one that caused alot of the punchline truths up above?
That I was unlovable, so I had better make myself useful.
But all of these 'truths' had led me to a point where I had many symptoms.

Burnout. Resentment. Bad Health. Loneliness. Isolation. A sense of inferiority and a Fearful Soul.
I will start talking about how I over came these issues tomorrow (and how I am still overcoming them).
When you are swimming in this much crap, you have to clear some of it out before you can start to move forward. It took me four years of getting healthy mentally before I was ready to face myself physically.

So, as promised.
My food...(I am sure you are all riveted)
1 BACC (big @ss cuppa coffee)
2 small cups of coffee
in my big cup I had 1/3 cuppa milk and 3 Tbs sugar (178 calories)
2 small cups
total 1/2 cuppa milk and splenda...(65 cal.) (these were interspersed throughout my day to keep me from being too hungry)
2 large eggs/1 extra large egg with 1 piece dry toast (320 cal.)
(let me explain first...I hoover food after my workout which is between 4-6 pm. I come home and need at least 200 calories out the door, so my intention is to keep it light in the middle of the day.)
I ate chicken bullion "soup" with a smidge of green onion... (12 cal.)
Then I ate 5.5 ounces of skinless apple slices with splenda and cinnamon (75 cal.)
Then I ate 3 thin slices of ham with 1/2 of a wedge of laughing cow..( 40 cal.)

Then I go and do my workout
33 minutes elliptical 330 calories
23 minutes stationary bike 185 calories
1 mile walk 100 calories
upper body weights
(calculated low around 50 calories)
total probable burn 665 calories.

Now I am hungry...really hungry.
I come home (and as sad as this is...the only thing that got me through that bike ride was the thought that once I got home, I could have 10 crackers with one Tablespoon of butter)
what I actually had was
6 crackers with 1 Tbn of butter
and 2 more crackers with the other half of the laughing cow cheese wedge (213 cal.).

and then dinner
7.7 ounces of chicken with 2 Tbsn of coating...(280 calories)
31/2 cups of broccoli (70 cal.)
2 Tbspns of parmesan cheese (40 cal.)
5 walnut pieces 80 cal.

2 chews
1 multi vitamin (20 cal.)
1 calcium chew (20 cal.)

Which puts me at 1403... So by rights I could go down and eat 67 calories of something...
But there really isn't anything I want.
That isn't covered in chocolate.
have a good night guys.
See you tomorrow.


Leslie said...

I'm riveted to your blog right now. Wish I'd done this work at your age rather than now, though I've worked on some pretty substantial shit over the years if I think of it.

I greatly appreciate you sharing your process at such depth. It's how I relate to life and my own journey.

Finally, and most important (not) - to have 6 crackers with the butter instead of 10, the 6 got more butter apiece! I'm a cracker and butter girl myself. The LC lite is good, but those 6 with real buttah are the best.

Sheilagh said...

Great post Christine.
As Lesley says before me, I wish I had learnt to do this years ago. I'm getting there (slowly) and reading your blog is a great inspiration to me.

Thank you


Putz said...

i love you chris

Helen said...

Though you've done the work (and are still doing it) at a young age, this post is ageless and timeless Chris. I hope lots of folks read it.

Re your comment on my Tuesday Ten: Of course NOW, as an adult, I so appreciate the values, etc. that my parents were trying to instill in us in regards to Christmas. But as a 14, 15, 16 year old? I hated it. Like everyone else that age, I just wanted to be like everyone else!

Anonymous said...

excellent post... You are always so down to earth and no hold backs... I enjoy your blog

Trece said...

I've been following your blog for a long time. This post is resonating like mad with me. All of those things are beliefs I hold, and the lack of passion, and the "can't be loved, be useful". I do not know how to turn this around. I can barely walk (overdid my workouts, need surgeries), weigh 300lbs., don't love my husband, have no financial resources. And I cannot figure how to lose weight without exercise. . .

Linda Pressman said...

Chris, I loved reading this, even though I've been reading you long enough to remember it. It just makes me take a deep breath, thinking about infusing life with joy and the lies we tell ourselves. I've also been thinking a lot lately about your "no way to retreat" post where you ran that video from the Kollel. Do you remember? I love that. I'm about to do that with my writing and I've been thinking about it and how appropriate it is to truly trust that there's a plan and it's not suffering. :)

anastasia said...

Chris, I've been following your blog for a few months. We couldn't lead more different lives. You have a strong faith while I am a non-militant, ever-hopeful atheist; your views are much more conservative than my very liberal ones; even our geography/nationality differs in that you're an Amercian and I'm as Canadian as they come; I'm likely old enough to be your mother yet, mysteriously, I come back to your blog consistently--even when I have time to only read two or three, yours is definitely included. I guess this entry explains why. I love that you ask so much of yourself and won't let yourself off the hook. You're dead serious about your goals, the way you lead your life and your values but have a wonderful sense of humour that always shines through. You're always a big help to me and I'm sure to all of your readers. Looking forward to tomorrow's post!

Robin said...

I don't know how many times you have written that whatever your battle, it is mental. I didn't know that you started waging yours in 2005. Sometimes it takes a long time to weed out a belief that just isn't working for you.

E. Jane said...

This post almost moved me to tears because I saw so much of myself in it. Although our lives are quite different (age, etc.) we have had many of the same experiences, and because of childhood issues, we have had the same attitude about ourselves that just screamed LOW SELF-ESTEEM and FAULTY BELIEF SYSTEM. I'm glad that you're working that out while you're still young. I'm still working on it at the age of 64. I never felt that I deserved to be thin and look good. It just felt so alien to me and I was frightened. As I became older, I developed some very internalized anger at the ways things had been. I'm not whining, and I take responsibility for much of it, but things could have been different during the best years of my life. Keep up the good work--you're worth it!