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Posts Tagged ‘youth’

I recently succeeded in losing another 20 lbs (since New Years), putting me just below my wedding weight and edging ever closer to my ideal weight.  A friend asked me how I did it and it got me thinking about the recipe for weight loss.

These days my weight loss recipe is a combination of dog walking, Weight Watchers, running after a 1-year-old and Vita Muffins (they are awesome!).

But upon discussing our party hey-day and how skinny we all were then, I got to thinking about what the old weight loss recipe.  For me, it primarily consisted of a high protein diet, in which I substituted nearly all of my allowed carb calories for alcohol.  At 23, I also had the freedom to spend two hours at the gym in the morning and take an hour-long power walk along the beach in the afternoon, followed by a night of running around Newport Beach like the party girl I was.

Yet, I don’t think that fully explains how I got to the lowest weight I have ever been in my adult life.  I think it’s important to factor in a couple of key emotional points:

1) My life was high drama at that point: boys, parties, crazy parties, long nights, etc..  It seemed that my weight inversely corresponded with the amount of drama I was dealing with.  The higher the drama, the lower my weight.  Perhaps my body was feeding off of drama, allowing me to never miss those other calories.

2) I was losing weight out of spite.  An ex-boyfriend of mine, just before he went for a three-month vacation abroad, left me with a loving parting gift in that he basically told me I was fat (his exact words were something along the lines of “why don’t you work out more and diet? you could have an awesome body if you wanted to.” also, he hinted that we could never end up together, since he loved “petite” girls.).  I know, I know.  HOW did I let such a gem slip through my fingers?!?!  So while he was gone, I decided I’d show him just how good I could look and he could have none of it!  I’m not sure that the logic is sound in that statement, but it captures my sentiment at the time.  It didn’t work out so well for him in the end though, as I met my husband around the same time my ex returned from his trip.  Ah, fate!

Today my life exists in a drama vacuum and the only emotional vendetta I have is against the makers of KitKats (so that’s a lose lose situation as I feel both better and worse when I eat them).

These days my main weight loss motivation centers around clothing and how I long to wear the pretty dresses I have stored in my closet from my thinner, crazier days (not that I have anywhere to wear them to, but none-the-less, I love them).  I also think about and dread the remaining bachelorette parties I have to attend, at which swimsuits seem to be required clothing.  And yes, my bust is bigger and my stretch marks are still visible so I will be in a one piece, but I’ll be darned if I’m not going to rock it!

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Beer

Last night I drank three of those large cup beers at a hockey game.  It definitely gave me a very strong buzz and made me so full I thought I was going to burst.  I felt as though the liquid was sloshing around inside me, making movement uncomfortable.  This lead me to think about my past beer drinking.

So why was it in college I drank beer all the time, but never felt as full as I do now?  I drank beer on a semi-constant basis: weeknight fraternity socials, beer pong and beer bongs, kegs at friends houses, six or twelve packs picked up just before 2am, pitchers in the afternoons after class, bottle after bottle at the bar. Yet I was still thirsty for more, never full.

Maybe it was the quality of the beer I was drinking.  Maybe Coors Light and Natural “Natty” Ice aren’t quite as filling as the nice Hefenweisens I drink these days.  Is it impossible to become full on Natty Ice?  I can remember drinking and drinking bottles of cold Coors on Spring or Summer breaks, never feeling a full sloshy stomach, only a full bladder.

I miss those days of empty pitchers on a sunny table.  I miss the social quality of drinking beers with friends.  Today, I’ve replaced it with the social camaraderie of wine, which has a different feeling to it.  So what changed? Why is beer so filling now?  Any ideas, my dear reader?

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My sister has a friend who is me. I know that sounds odd, but she is. She is the younger, shorter version of me. Same goals, same dreams, same faults, same virtues, same propensity for getting our heart crushed. And I can see all the steps laid out before her. I know how she feels about the people in her life, both past and present, because I felt that once. I know mistakes she wants to make, because she can’t help but make them, just as I did. I want to help her, stop her, save her, but should I? or better yet, can I?

I was talking to her last night and my sister looked over and said, you guys are the same person. We were discussing her becoming friends with her ex-boyfriend and I scoffed at her “we’re just friends” speech she was giving me. I scoffed because, as my sister said, I knew how she was feeling, because I had felt that way. I knew what she wanted to do and what she was going to do, because I had done it.

It’s strange to find such a strong kinship with a young woman I am unrelated to, since I have two sisters. I share many things in common with my sisters, but in matters of the heart, they have always been very different from me. Maybe it’s the fact that I’m the oldest, as is Kristina, and we must blaze our own trail. We have no one to shine a light on the direction we should go or the trials we’ll have to face if we chose one path or another. We also are full of the ideals of youth far beyond youth, because we are the first born and no one has taught us that these ideals cannot be. I still hold on to mine, in some ways, though not as fervently and with much greater cynicism than I once did. But these ideals still sleep in my chest, ready to awaken at any time. Kristina’s are still awake all the time and constantly moving.

Because I know her and I know me, I want to protect her from the trials ahead. I want to be the big sister to her as I was to my sisters. I want to show her the cliffs before she goes over them and just where the hidden bridges are to higher, safer places. I want to shelter her from the pain that I suffered. But if I do that I know I will be doing her a great disservice. If she is me, she’ll find a way to experience the pain one way or another, or rather the pain will find her. She has to learn on her own how to navigate the rocky edges of the world, or one day she might fall and be unprepared to climb her way back up.

I suppose in the end, I just wish her luck and pray that maybe she isn’t me after all. Maybe her path is different. And hopefully her path is better.

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